1766 September 1 (Monday). Visit old Mr. How — and pray with him. In my Way called to see old Capt. Forbush. At Mr. Beetons saw Mr. Andrew Adams of Grafton. Lament to him his sister Andrews’s Condition.
1766 September 2 (Tuesday). Went to See Mrs. Wood; and She dys while I was at the House; but I was not with her till her last Breath. I prayed and gave some Exhortation. May the Lord be with us, that we may duely improve it! P.M. Mrs. Cotton (Capt. Thomas Clarks Daughter) from Hopkinton made us a kind Visit. Jos. Joslin accompanyed her.
1766 September 3 (Wednesday). Mr. Smith dined with us, and preached my Lecture on Joh. 9.22. Which may God accompany with His Blessing!
1766 September 4 (Thursday). Mrs. Wood’s Funeral. Mr. Barrett, his son, and sons wife came. Dined with us. Then went to Capt. Woods. Mr. Barrett prayed. May it please God to grant us to be sensible how frail we are, and quicken us to due preparation for Death and Judgment! Mr. B. etc. returned at Eve. Rev. Hall of Sutton, called here in his way home. My Daughter in Law and her Daughter Betty came from Brookfield and lodged here. N.B. Mr. Barnabas Newton with a Yoke of Oxen, Levi Rice, with one Yoke, Caleb and John with my own Cattle and Nathan Kennys — finished the Crossing my new Field.
1766 September 5 (Friday). Eliza and her Daughter go to Watertown. Elisha Forbes brings up a brass Kittle from Mr. Loyd at Boston. Weighed 23 lbs. Caleb mows Rowing. My wife to Capt. Maynards and Mr. How’s.
1766 September 6 (Saturday). Sarah very full of pain, and has Fever and great Pain in her Head as well as Breast. Brother Hicks from Boston. He is Engaged in Land Bank Troubles, and his Case against Mr. Danforth, soon to come on at Worcester Superior Court.
1766 September 7 (Sunday). Read Isa. 35 and John 6 to v. 35. Preached a. and p.m. on Luke. 2.14 which I had delivered before in 3 Exercises. But now in two — having omitted the Beginning and altered and added in many places. I had prepared sufficient for a sermon, but could not finish the Subject I am there upon; which I shall choose to do if I can: but I could not prepare another for the Communion by Reason of the many Engagements and unavoidable Avocations of last Week from Day to Day. I administered the Lord’s Supper. Mr. Cushing and Mrs. Maynard dined here: as did Dr. Wilson and Jos. Joslin who Visits Sarah, and opens her Breast again. At Eve read part of Mr. Henry Grove on the Lord’s Supper, p. 161.
1766 September 8 (Monday). Had Dr. Hawes Chair and carryed Sarah to Hopkinton. Alexander Chamberlin and his Wife here. N.B. At Capt. Millers. Viewed his survey of the Roads; West, to Albany — East, to Georges. We dined at Mr. Barretts. We go to Capt. Clarks, and I lodge Sarah there. Return at Eve. Find Billy here, and with him his Neighbour Barrett to accompany him to Medfield, to his Marriage. N.B. Caleb has Lt. Baker’s Oxen again, with Nathan Kennys and mine to harrow our New Ground.
1766 September 9 (Tuesday). Messrs. Wheelock and John Maynard come; they go with Billy to Medfield. Mr. Zebulun Rice, makes a Barrell of Cyder for me, which we pick up in my Orchard. Read Mr. Simonds Deserted Soul — an Excellent useful Book!
1766 September 10 (Wednesday). A very considerable Quantity of Flax this Year. Read Epistolary Correspondence between Pike and Sandeman, which is Sent to me by Mr. John Welch the Carver, at Boston. Received a Letter of Vindication from Cousen Elias Parkman, relative to what occurred July 17th last. Though it was a rainy Day, yet at Evening Billy came and the Young Lady (heretofore Miss Lydia Adams) whom he had last night marryed at Medfield. Besides those that went with Billy then, none except her Brother Mr. Elijah Adams, came hither with them. We were altogether unprepared, having no Expectation at all of them, but designed, tomorrow, to give our Selves to make Preparations for them. Mr. Adams and Barrett lodge here. The Others, respectively, went home.
1766 September 11 (Thursday). My Son Billy and his Bride leave us for Townshend. All the Company we have a Breakfast (besides my son and Daughter) is Mr. Adams and Barrett — And but two more join them to go home with them, viz. Messrs. Wheelock and John Maynard.
1766 September 12 (Friday). Mr. William Pierce comes to work upon the Wall of the further Field. Caleb and John help him. Mr. Francis Hutchinson returning to Grafton, calls and dines here. Lent him Ayres Arithm. and Sent him to Mrs. Johnson for her Hodder or Cocker. P.M. I am Sent for hastily to go to Mr. Samuel Thurstons Wife, being in a Dying State. I found her Departing — yet She seemed to have her senses so far as to consent to prayer. I prayed — and She soon expired. At my Return home found here, Mr. Whitman of Hartford and his Wife. He is riding for his Health. They were charged to come here by Mrs. Ledger, heretofore Ellery. They lodge here, as did Mr. Asaph Rice and his Wife. My Daughter Parkman and her Daughter Betty came; but went to Deacon Bonds, and lodged there. Blessed be God who has continued my Wife and Me in the Conjugal Relation 29 Years together — which affords us Matter of Joy and Thanks — but Humilliation also for our great Defects. The Lord pardon us, and grant us His undeserved Favour and most needed Grace still!
1766 September 13 (Saturday). Our Company left us. P.M. Mr. Stone here going to Grafton. My Daughter and Grand Daughter came from Watertown.
1766 September 14 (Sunday). Read Isa. 36 and preached a. and p.m. on 2 Thess. 3.1. P.M. read Joh. 6 from v. 35. Besides my Daughter in Law and my grand Daughter, Miss Peggy Fessenden dined here. My Discourses to Day were Somewhat animated, and I spoke Plainly. When I was Speaking of the Impediment to the word arising from pastoral Examinations I said I could appeal to those who had been with me upon that Occasion, that I had treated them tenderly and affectionately, Ensign Jeduthun Fay went out. N.B. Mr. Hutchinson returning from Southborough, and Mr. Stone (who called here on Saturday last in his Way up) returning from Grafton, were here and Supp’d with us. The latter lodged here.
1766 September 15 (Monday). Mr. Stone left us in the Morning. See the work done by Caleb etc. in the Almanack. At 9 o’Clock I attended the Funeral of Mrs. Thurston. After the Burial Mr. Tainter informed me that a Number of the Brethren designed to be at my House, upon the Affair of Mrs. Andrews. It was now 1/2 after 11 o’Clock. I told him I was obliged to visit Mrs. Smith who was in a very distressed Condition. Her son Ezekiel had acquainted me with it: and I perceived her Case was growing desperate apace, and could not be neglected: I had also Company at my House (My Daughter in Law and Grand Daughter, who would leave me in the Morning, and under take their Journey home); Mrs. Parkman was preparing also to go with them designing to go further than Brookfield: Besides other pressing Affairs that would engage me this Evening — so that I was very sorry they Should come at Such a Time, and give me so short warning; that I could not be prepared for them. P.M. I visited Mrs. Smith and found her in a very melancholy, desponding State. Much in the Same Road to Despair, that her poor Brother (the late Mr. Joseph Miles of Shrewsbury) was in. Capt. Benjamin Fay came there also. We prayed — and I did my utmost to comfort her; but it seems to be in Vain. I had run to See Mr. Artemas Bruce’s Wife, because of her weak State — and called to See Mr. Eleazer Pratts Wife who is Sick again; and prayed with her. In the Evening, instead of my being in my Preparation for so remarkable Day with me, as to morrow, or attending upon the Affair of my Wife’s Journey, or enjoying the Company of those whom I so rarely see, and are so soon to leave me, there came in no less than 16 Brethren of the Church, viz. Deacon Bond, Capt. Fay, Capt. Brigham, Messrs. Nathaniel Whitney, Daniel Forbes, Zebulun Rice, Ithamar Bellows, Daniel Hardy, Elijah Rice, Thomas Twitchel, B. Tainter, James Bowman, Daniel Adams, Constantine Hardy, John Wood. And I can’t tell but there were more. I gave them to understand how unhappy it was to come at this Time; how unprepared I was for it — that I could not attend upon it — that it was unkind not to give me more seasonable Warning of their Design. I prayed ‘em to consider how my Case was. Nevertheless they tarryed and some of them especially were very Zealous in Mrs. Andrews Behalf — rejecting what ever Defence I could make: especially making light of the Results of the Councils, Letters of Ministers, Informations which a Number of Ministers have given me, besides other Persons, especially of late, of the great irregularity among that people at Chebacco. Nor could anything I could Say appease them who so warmly withstood me — nor did it signifie for me to endeavour to Set them right in Things they had taken wrong. Yet vehemently urging and pressing that I must be reconciled — that I must — though I had assured them that I had done many Things in order to it, and had informed them so, over and over — yet it was in Vain — especially with Capt. Brigham, Mr. Whitney, Forbes, Tainter, D. Hardy — and I fear I must add Deacon Bond. This Altercation lasted till full, if not past, Nine o’Clock. For I think it was 1/2 past nine when they left me. May God look upon it and be gracious to us! A Sorrowful Manner of concluding this Year of my Life. The Lord Sanctifie it to me and give me Grace and Wisdom to conduct Suitably in this Day of Temptation — that I may be patient, and resigned, humble and penitent — and may God be gracious to all those who are dissatisfyed with me when I have taken so much Pains to give them no Cause for it! My Wife is preparing to go to Stafford and if Brother Breck be so bad as we hear, I suppose She will go to Springfield also. Secretary Oliver went last Monday through this Town in his Way to Stafford-spring.
1766 September 16 (Tuesday). See Natal: My Wife and Daughter ride together in a Chaise, and John takes up Betty behind him on my Mare; but John is to go no further than Worcester. The rest aim at Seeing Brookfield to night. May they have a prosperous Journey by the Will of God! Have word at Eve by John Belknap that my Son is gone up to Brookfield. They were well, as far as Leicester about 12 o’Clock. At Evening came Mr. Tainter and his Wife. They brought a present of Peaches. He had appointed to reckon yesterday, but he did not come Seasonably; therefore it was unavoidable to Night (unless I had too much exposed my Self). He paid me all — and I gave him a Receipt for £166.13.4. N.B. No Word passed, of any Andrews Matter.
1766 September 17 (Wednesday). Employed in Writing Chiefly. John returns from Brookfield. Serious Reflections on the Andrews-Troubles etc. etc.
1766 September 18 (Thursday). Catechized the Children a. and p.m. N.B. 54 Boys: 28 Girls. Mr. Loyd returns from Brandford and Stafford, and Mr. Peace Casneaut, who (having the Jaundice) has been to the Spring, with him. They dine here in haste. But they would not tarry with us — but pushed along, to get as far as they could. Mrs. Rice, Wife of Elijah here after Catechizing. I carry on her Examination. At Eve walk’d up to See Capt. Wood, in his Solitariness. N.B. He seems to urge my taking some Brethren of the Church, or more, and visiting Mrs. Andrews.
1766 September 19 (Friday). [No entry.]
1766 September 20 (Saturday). Mr. Pierce and his son William having worked till noon, we reckoned and the Father having worked 4 1/2 Days and his son 3 1/2 at 18/ — They both go to finishing the wall, gratis this afternoon. A.M. I went to Mr. Beetons for some Beef. Visit Mr. Nathan Maynards Wife and prayed there. Went also to Mr. David Maynards to Speak to him about going with me to Mrs. Andrews, if she would accept a proposal which I purposed to make to her. To which he consented. And I desired him to go to Mr. Solomon Baker to go also. And apprize Squire Whipple that I Should be glad to have him near at Hand, if I should have Occasion for him, to be sworn before him, respecting any thing I had writ, or should assert. Which he said he would. The Time I proposed to be next Tuesday 2 p.m. To these he agreed. When I came home I prepared a line to Mrs. Andrews, and sent John to her, with it. Then I rode to Hopkinton and Mr. Barrett came here.
1766 September 21 (Sunday). I preached at Hopkinton on Rom. 7.9 a. and p.m. and baptized Sarah-Watts, Daughter of Richard Kelly: and Sarah, Daughter of Gilbert Dench. At Eve I rode to Capt. Clarks to see my Daughter, who grows better (through the Goodness of God), called at Dr. Wilsons, and came home. Mr. Barrett preached a. and p.m. on Ps. 17.15 and returned at Eve. Mrs. Tainter, Miss Betty Gott and Miss Peggy Fessenden dined here.
1766 September 22 (Monday). Mr. John Marrit dined with me. Wrote to Mrs. P. by Nathan Kenny, who with widow Williams and Jonas Kenny, go to Stafford. P.M. Mr. Ezekiel Smiths wife here, Examined and approved.
1766 September 23 (Tuesday). Having received a Line from Mr. Andrews that they consented to my Proposal, Walked to Mr. David Maynard and Mr. Solomon Baker to get them to come to my House, to Meet Mr. Andrews and his wife, and such Brethren as they Should bring. I went also to Squire Whipple’s, that I might have him either to bear Testimony or take mine, if the Case Should require it. He said he would be at Mrs. Johnson’s. Mr. and Mrs. A. came and Capt. Jonas Brigham and Mr. N. Whitney with them. Also Messrs. Maynard and Baker here: I proposed that Mrs. A. should first exhibit her Complaint, which it seems is very bitter against me: To which I would make Reply: and then the Brethren having heard us, on both sides, they must use their best Endeavours to reconcile us. Mr. Andrews began. He attempted the story of the Beginning of their Conversing with me: but sadly mixed Things that occurred some time after — by which mixing, the story was Set in a Strange Light. Mrs. A. helped it along. The Complaint seems to be briefly This, that when She first came into the Town, she asked me to let her Communicate, but I would not: and that She desired me to lay her Request before the Church, but I would not. After a great deal of Jarr and Difficulty by reason of Interruptions, I undertook to deliver a Narrative (about 8 pages) of the very first Visit I made them and what occurred afterward, that it might be seen how Mrs. A. had asked — and what kind of Denial I gave her; and whether I ever gave her the least Ground of Offence. Although Messrs. Maynard and Baker, I think very hardly Spoke at all, openly or Audibly to us, Capt. Brigham and Mr. Whitney, did abundantly especially the former, as if they were their Advocates, instead of Peace makers between us. In brief, although on each part we professed to be for Peace, yet we unhappily broke up without Reconcilement to my great Grief and sorrow. They did indeed desire to throw up all — and they wanted that my papers might be burnt. But I was not willing to accept of their Offer, unless they would give some sign of their being Sensible of the Wrong they had done me — namely by being so causelessly and so deeply affronted with me, which they have manifested by continual Revilings, Staying at Home, etc. Capt. Brigham and Mr. Whitney ought not to have come upon this Occasion, because they were Such Men as are excepted against in my Letter of Proposal of this Meeting: for they were men that had so shewn their Judgments before — as witness what was said by both of them with great Zeal, on the 15th at Eve. Yet I thought I would try them. Memorandum. I did not pretend to meddle with the other part of the Case, viz. relating to the Society which she comes from. It had been well if we could have made up what lay only between us two only. Capt. B. and Mr. W. would have it that We had both of us been to blame. I entreated them to tell me wherein I had. They answered In my calling them Separates. I replyed, that I was Sufficiently warranted in using that Term, for it was what the Books that were printed about them frequently used, and what they were called in the Letters from the Ministers who had writ about them and what I had my Self found ‘em to be. Again, in saying at Mr. Andrews’s the Night Mr. C. was there that he was a troublesome man among the Neighbours. I replyed, that That was (drawn out I might say) upon my Defence (when he boasted so much of his being a very peaceable, quiet Man among us). And I [ins?]ed in several Things which I had been credibly enough certifyed of. Briefly, I did not think that these were so blameworthy Articles as to bring me upon a par with them, and to such a Degree as to cut me off from that Christian Satisfaction which was due to me from them. They would lump and drop all now, without their being in the least sensible that they had done me any Wrong. And yet I would heartily go as far as can be just in coalescing and comprimising — being very weary of the Contest. N.B. Mr. A. did not go away near so warm as she did: so that there was more hope of him than of her. Mr. A. told me Mr. C. was coming up again, would preach at his House, and he hoped I would come and hear him. I answered that as they were some of his people and they would not put them Selves nor theirs under my Care (for I had about the same time been inviting them to Meeting and to send their Children to Catechizing and they positively refused) it might not be very improper, if he preached anywhere. (However, I Should be afraid of the Evil Consequence of it among my Neighbours.)
1766 September 24 (Wednesday). I felt poorly — owing to a Cold I suppose taken last Night Standing abroad with Capt. Brigham. Yet Visit old Capt. Forbes. Mr. David Hills on behalf of his Brother Benjamin asks prayer and Visit.
1766 September 25 (Thursday). Rev. Mr. Bowen of Boston brings Polly Forbes, in the Rain. I am still poorly, but am refreshed by hearing that Mrs. P. got well to Stafford last Friday. My Son Ebenezer waited upon her, and tarried there till Monday; but then, leaving her there, returned to Brookfield. The long Sweep-Pole at the upper Well, broke down. Mr. B. Tainter supposes that nigh 100 lbs. of Meat was Stole out of his Cellar the night before last.
1766 September 26 (Friday). Caleb goes to Mr. Nurse’s to get a Well-Sweep, but without Success. Mr. Simon Tainter of Sutton, and his Wife here. By them I return to Mr. Welman, his Henry Vol. 1 and to Mr. Taynter I return his Pamphlet relating to turning to the Church of England. Capt. Clark of Hopkinton was So good as to come to see me; and dined with us. Mr. Solomon Millers Wife came and brought her Relation. And because of her Deafness I read over the Church-Covenant to her, loud and into her Ear, so as that She declared before two Witnesses, that She understood it, and freely consented to it. Deacon Tainter from Boston, brought me 1/8 of hundred of Sugar from Mr. Loyd; and 4 large Oranges from my Son Samuel. N.B. Deacon again declared that he heard Mrs. Andrews say “I don’t believe that Mr. P. has a spark of Grace in him, for I never could see any.” Deacon repeated and I wrote the words from his Mouth. The Occasion of this was, She t’other Night stiffly denyed it. O how my Heart grieves for this bitter Contention, and Sad Contradiction!
1766 September 27 (Saturday). Mr. Ezekiel Smith here and Examined.
1766 September 28 (Sunday). Read Isa. 37. Preached a. and p.m. on Isa. 54.13. P.M. read Joh. 7. Widow Smith and Mrs. Maynard dined here. Mr. Moore from Shrewsbury at Evening and lodged here.
1766 September 29 (Monday). Mr. Hardy and Lieut. Hezekiah Ward had agreed to leave their dispute about my 5 acres of Chauncy Swamp to Arbitration of Capt. Ephraim Brigham of Marlborough, Capt. Maynard and Mr. Timothy Warrin. They all came here. The first dined here. They all went and viewed; and considered the Antient Platt etc. At Eve they drew up their Judgment and signed it — by which the Land was awarded to me, and Mr. Hardy signed as consenting to it. Mrs. Lydia Brigham, heretofore Green, here, Penitent. Mr. Silas Biglow returns from the Eastward.
1766 September 30 (Tuesday). I rode to Grafton to visit Mr. Benjamin Hills in his Languishment. Dined there; prayed with him. Visit Solomon Prentice junior who is recovering from his grievous Scald. Called at Mr. Hutchinsons but he was gone to Ministers Meeting at Mill-river. N.B. am informed by Mrs. Hutchinson that Messrs. Hutchinson, Conklin and Chaplin with their Delegates formed a Council last week at New Rutland, as Mr. Frinks and his Partys Desire, but that they chiefly advised them to Agree with the Church. While I was gone Mr. Moore takes Suse and Polly Forbes in a Chaise and goes to Marlborough. They return at Evening and Mr. Steward with them. They lodge here.