April 1, 1776

1776 April 1 (Monday).  Hap. was quiet through the Night.  In returning home I called to See Coll. Williams.  Lit at Mr. Caleb Rice’s — His Wife very low and distressed.  Lit also and refreshed at Cornet Brigham’s.  When I came home, found that Mrs. P________ had been poorly, and took Physic yesterday.  Sukey mends slowly.  Mr. Whitney preached a. and p.m. on [blank].  Am informed that my Kinsman Loyd came here last night and lodged here.  This Morning he sat out for Boston.  He Says his Wife dyed Feb. 21 and that a Letter to Leicester from his Sister Bradford certifyed that his son Samuel dyed March [blank].  Mrs. Polly Eyres at work and dines, here.

April 2, 1776

1776 April 2 (Tuesday).  Nath. Chamberlain was yesterday not well, and therefore did not come: but this Morning came and began to work for me for six Months as we have agreed.  I rode to see Joseph Grout junior who is much better.  I dined there, and p.m. visit Mr. Elijah Hardys Wife, who is sick of a Fever.  Prayed with her.  Visited at Ens. Millers.  When I returned found Mr. Phin. Gleason and his wife here who made us a Kind and generous Visit.

April 3, 1776

1776 April 3 (Wednesday).  A.M. Visit old Mrs. Sarah Forbush.  Saw her Cancer.  Prayed with her.  P.M. Mr. John Putnam brought me from Mr. Cushing of Ashburnham, in Bills which Mr. Charles Lawrence of Ashby, left for me when he took up his Note (which was left with Mr. Cushing).  Also a Receipt from Ashby Assessors, of Tax and [Posts?].  He Also drove away Mr. Cushings Cow which I have kept for him through the winter.  I had a Letter from him, and returned an Answer per the Same Bearer.  My son Alexander came from Leicester.  He has been confined with illness — but (through the Goodness of God) is much recovered.  He tarrys overnight.  Mr. Daniel Forbes junior of Brookfield having been at Cape Ann, and Seen his unkle Eli, calls here; and he having undertaken the Charge of my Son Baldwins Coi-Hill Pasture, agrees to take some of my Creatures to keep the ensuing Summer, if I send them.

April 4, 1776

1776 April 4 (Thursday).  My Son Alexander goes home.  N.B. I have prepared the [Way?] with him for pasturing Some Young Cattle, if I shall Stand in need.  Sent a letter to Mr. Forbes, by Mr. Levi Warrin, to be committed to the Care of Gloucester Representative at Waterton.  Read the New Edition of Common Sense, which has Additions.

April 7, 1776

1776 April 7 (Sunday).  A.M. Repeated (with proper Variations according to the Present times) the latter part of Sermons on Ps. 145.8, but this Exercise was introduced by reading Nahum 1.3.  O that God would please to grant His Grace to us all, that His Goodness might so affect as to lead us to Repentance and that His Longsuffering might prove salvation to us!  P.M. preached on Justification by Faith alone, and not by Works, carrying on the Subject began from Rom. 3.28, but the Text of the Exercise was Eph. 2.8, former part.  Our Cousen Maynard dined with us.

April 8, 1776

1776 April 8 (Monday).  An extraordinary Military Meeting of the people to choose Militia-Officers for this Town.  Mr. David Maynard and Mr. Seth Morse came in and gave me Account.  N.B. Neighbour Wheelock (I’m informed) is Major; and Cornet Brigham is made a Lieut. Coll. and these Preside at the Meeting.  Capt. Golding of Grafton is made Chief Col. and Capt. Job Cushing another Major.

Apri l9, 1776

1776 April 9 (Tuesday).  Nathaniel Chamberlain is so indisposed that he does not come to work.  I went over to see him.  Visit also the widow Williams.  At Eve Received a large and very affectionate Letter from my Son Forbes of Gloucester, dated 14 Mar.  He informs me that the Church has given him a Call to settle with them.

April 10, 1776

1776 April 10 (Wednesday).  Visit Mr. Abijah Gales Sick Child, Elisha, which languishes.  Prayed with them and dined there.  Visit the widow Gale, and her son Amsden Gale.  Visit Abel Woods, who remains confined by his Wound yet.  I went in likewise to see aged Lt. [blot] and his Wife who are confined by their Infirmities.  N.B. [blot] Hammett of Boston, dined here, in his way to Connecticutt.

April 11, 1776

1776 April 11 (Thursday).  Abigail Woods came to make me a black Serge Jacket, but works only part of the Day (came late and broke off early — her Brother Abel is gone in a Waggon this afternoon part of the way to Brookfield).  Mr. Cordwell of Sutton here, returning home.  I trade with Capt. Maynard for a 3 year old Steer to match One of Mine; Elijah being fond of obtaining it.  Lt. Uriah Brigham brings me a Letter from Squire [Jos.?] Dorr of Mendon informing me of his Mothers Death and desiring Me to attend the Funeral tomorrow.

April 12, 1776

1776 April 12 (Friday).  I had designed to go to Mendon to the Funeral of old Madam Dorr and my son Samuel had purposed to go to Boston, with his Wife and Babe; but the Morning prov’d very Stormy — snowed very hard — till it lay thick.  Rained afterwards — which prevents our journeying our several Ways.  But I am especially Sollicitous, how poor Abel Woods fares, who was carryed in a Waggon yesterday, as far as Capt. Job Cushing’s — being in his Way to Brookfield to be under the Care of Dr. Kitteridge.

April 16, 1776

1776 April 16 (Tuesday).  Dr. Elliot prosecutes his Journey.  He is going to Fairfield to his Wife and Children.  I rode with him in my Way to Northborough, Ministers Meeting to Day at Mr. Whitneys.  There were present, of the Association, only Mr. Goss and Mr. Newell; but Mr. Morse of Shrewsbury was with us.  I think he said Nothing of his own Affairs.  I was chose Moderator and prayed.  We heard somewhat of Mr. Goss’s present Circumstances.  He intimates that Mr. Walleys Party grow cool, and that some of them attend his Meeting.  In returning home I called at Capt. Maynards to see Mrs. Amsden, but She was so weak She could say nothing to me.  I prayed with her.  I wrote to Mr. Stone to come and preach my Lecture.  Mr. Bradshaw here.  He is come, from Boston, and from his Father’s at Stoughtonham; and lodges with us.

April 17, 1776

1776 April 17 (Wednesday).  Mr. Bradshaw leaves us to go home to New Braintry.  Mr. Stone did not come to preach.  I preached myself to a few that came.  I preached on Ps. 2.11, having regard to Gods Goodness in the precipitant Removal of the Kings Forces from Boston and Castle William by which means the Capital is opened for the Inhabitants to re-enter the Town with Freeness.

April 18, 1776

1776 April 18 (Thursday).  Mr. Caleb Harrington a.m. assists me in setting out Trees etc.  Mrs. Stone of Framingham dines with us — her Daughter Goddard of Shrewsbury also; and Mr. Thomas Townsend (Son of Mr. William Blair Townsend) all dined with us.  At Evening came a soldier, Says his Name is James Formoyle of Bedford, Pensylvania belonging to Capt. Cluggedge’s Company, in Col. Thompson’s Regiment of Riflers — has been Sick, but is now hastening to New York.  Prays he may lodge by our Fire.  I pityed and suffered him.

April 19, 1776

1776 April 19 (Friday).  We have Cause to remember this Day twelve months past.  This was the Commencement of Hostilities between the Kings Troops and the Provincials, at Lexington.  What a Year!  How unparallelled!  We have had of it!  O might it please God, the God of all Grace and Goodness to Sanctifie His holy and righteous but heavy and distressing Judgment of unnatural, intestine War, upon us, a poor Sinful degenerate, Heaven-provoking People!  And in the midst of Wrath remember Mercy!  And as He has begun to shew Compassion to us, in the withdraw of the Oppressing Army and Naval Forces, So would perfect the begun Salvation!

April 20, 1776

1776 April 20 (Saturday).  Mr. Caleb Harrington a.m. setts out a Number of Different sorts of Trees for me, and carrys home a Number for himself.  Hear there was a Lecture at Northborough yesterday in Remembrance of the Battle at Lexington.  But Mr. Whitney gave me no intimation of it, nor any of the Ministers besides (that I know of) last Tuesday when I was at his House.

April 21, 1776

1776 April 21 (Sunday).  I preached a.m. on 1 Cor. 5.8.  Administered the Lords Supper.  May it please God to Pardon the Sins of our holy Things, and accept our Offerings for Christs sake!  May we also be enabled to keep the sacred Bonds which we have been renewing!  P.M. Text Gal. 1.15.  Used, with various Alterations sermon on Isa. 55.5 from p. 135 to p. 143.  N.B. Mrs. Maynard, her Daughter Davis and Suse Brigham dined here.  William Fleet, Flax-Comber, came here before Noon; dines and lodges and (without any Desire of mine) Stays with us.

April 22, 1776

1776 April 22 (Monday).  William Fleet works here in hatchelling Flax.  P.M. Visited Mr. Simeon Bellows’s son Daniel sick of a Fever; and prayed there.  Heard that Mr. Edmund Chamberlains Wife is very ill of a Fever (soon after Childbearing).  I went to see her — and prayed with her.  A worthy, pious woman.  I returned by Ens. Snows.  At home I found my Kinsman Loyd who has been to Boston and is returning to Granville: he lodges here, as does Elijah Brigham, being lately come from Dartmouth College.

April 23, 1776

1776 April 23 (Tuesday).  Fleet at work on Flax.  (N.B. Mrs. P. lately bought of Breck an hundred Weight.)  We do something of Gardening.  Plow etc.  P.M. Visit old Mrs. Smith who is ill and for some time confined.  Conversed and prayed with them.  Called also at Mr. Nurses, Pratts and T. Whitneys.  Conversed with them and their Children.  Return at Eve.  Fleet talkative etc. etc.

April 24, 1776

1776 April 24 (Wednesday).  Would Send Mr. Newells Vol. of Guthries Cicero by Elisha Forbes to Treasurer Gardner at Watertown for Conveyance; but am disappointed.  Fleet proves troublesome in the Family.  Spent a great part of my time in directing the gardening: could do but little my Self.  At Eve received a large Letter from my Friend Edmund Quincy Esq. Still at Lancaster; to my great Refreshing.

April 25, 1776

1776 April 25 (Thursday).  My dear son Forbes came this Forenoon.  He is Journeying in a Surkey from Gloucester to Brookfield.  He lodged last night at the widow Brighams at Southborough.  Dines with us and goes on his Journey.  N.B. He leaves a Letter to our Church requesting Assistance in his Installment.  And asks me to preach on that Solemnity.  P.M. Visit old Mrs. Kelly, and called to see Mr. Ebenezer Maynard and his New Wife, whose Maiden name was Sarah Winchester.  Cousen Mainard and her sister Nichols rode to our House and took up Mrs. P________ with them into their Carriage and carryed her to squire Baker’sFleet is here yet — very talkative and troublesome.  Received Mr. Bowen’s request to change with him, who preaches at Watertown; next Sabbath.  But I was obliged to write a Denyal; having so many pre-engagements to fulfill.

April 26, 1776

1776 April 26 (Friday).  Sent Mr. Newells Book to Squire Gardner (See above 24) and an Answer to Mr. Bowen, by Mr. Daniel Grout.  Deacon Wood here in the Morn to request me to go to his Brother Joseph’s Child’s Burial — but I am bespoke already — for p.m. I attended the Funeral of Mr. Ab. Gale’s Child, Elisha of nigh 11 Months, which dyed yesterday of a Consumption.  I prayed there.  Also I (by desire) called at Mr. Timothy Warrins, Two of his Daughters, Eunice and Ruth, and a grand daughter (of Six years) being Sick of a Fever.  Prayed with them.  N.B. The troublesome William Fleet, having finished his combing 104 lb. of Flax in the forenoon, 1 d. lawful per lb., left us.

April 28, 1776

1776 April 28 (Sunday).  Preached a.m. on my Subject which I have been treating of for Some time, viz. Faith and Justification from Rom. 3.8.  To Day the 6th, 7th and 8th of the Fruits and Effects of it, but read Rom. 5.1 for the present Text.  P.M. delivered again (with peculiar Introduction, connecting it with the forenoon Discourse) Sermon on Isa. 55.5, those words “and Nations etc. shall Run unto thee.”  May God add his Blessing!  Mrs. Rumley dined with us.  After Meeting Deacon Miles here.

April 29, 1776

1776 April 29 (Monday).  Mr. Whitney of Northborough here.  Asks me to his Lecture on Wednesday.  I attended at the House of Mourning and Prayed before the Interrment of Daniel son of Simeon Bellows, about 7 years old — and their youngest is also Sick: both the Father and mother so indisposed as that neither of them could go to the Grave.  I visited also at Mr. Seth Woods, where two Children are sick: and the Man Pleuretic.  Prayed with them.  Mr. Edmund Chamberlin requested me to visit his Wife again.  I complyed, went, discoursed with her and pray’d etc.  When I returned home, found my Son Alexander, his Wife and Ch[blot] a here.  They lodge with us.

April 30, 1776

1776 April 30 (Tuesday).  The heavy [r]ain a.m. hinders Alexander journeying till after dinner.  Then he and His Set out for Framingham.  I rode p.m. to Worcester.  On my way called to talk with Mr. Daniel Forbes (at old serjeant Maynards) concerning the Gloucester Letter.  Called also at Mr. Sumners, but did not go in — his Wife extremely low.  Hastened to Mr. Maccartys — who presented me with one of his Thanksgiving Sermons, on Ps. 34.1.[1]  In returning called at Mr. Samuel Bridge’s etc.  At Capt. Curtis’s.  At Mr. Sumners.  Arrived safely at home between 9 and 10.  Thanks to God!

[1]Thaddeus Maccarty, Praise to God, a Duty of Continual Obligation. A sermon, Preached at Worcester, Thursday, November 23d, 1775. Being a Day of Public Thanksgiving, by the Appointment of the General Assembly (Worcester: Isaiah Thomas, 1776.  Evans 14830).