1777 November 1 (Saturday). This Month begins with a cold, frosty Air. The Morning [torn] Cold. Breck in looking over some of my Bills of mo[illegible] finds among some that I took of Alexander, a 30/ New Hampshire Money Bill which he fears is counterfeit.
1777 November 2 (Sunday). I preached a.m. on Ps. 119.71, but used the Notes on Ps[illegible] 9 from p. 19 to 25, and p.m. on Eph. 2.1.2, which I composed on Occasion of the Dissoluteness of these Times. May God be pleased thoroughly to awaken us hereby! Mrs. Gale and her sister Jones, Winslow Brigham and his sister Mindwell dined here. N.B. Great Killing of Cattle at squire Bakers to day. At Eve read Drexelius on Eternity.
1777 November 3 (Monday). I gave Mr. Cornelius Biglow some New-Hampshire Bills to be by him changed at Exeter.
I visited Mrs. Lucy Forbush who is Sick, and prayed with her. P.M. late, was at Deacon Woods; and at Eve at squire Bakers. N.B. Cattle killed yesterday, which are to be sent to Worcester for the Supply of the Army, with the other Necessarys of Life, as now at this time, General Burgoynes Army are expected to be on their road to Boston.
1777 November 4 (Tuesday). This was to have been private Meeting at Mr. Tainters, but it is put off to next week, by reason of many people going over to the Post-Road to see the Regulars in their moving towards Boston. Breck and Suse, Elias and Sophy ride there.
Two Regular Ensigns here and lodge, viz. Messrs. Jonas Parker of London and Robert Mercy of Ireland. Paid Reuben Lambson twelve Dollars or 3£ 12.
1777 November 5 (Wednesday). The two Ensigns, after attending Prayer and Breakfast, left us to go to their Regiments. Elias, on Brecks Mare, undertakes to go up to Cois Hill to drive down my young Cattle. My Husbandry Business run sadly behind, by reason of Reubens working, now the fourth Day, for his uncle Paul: and wants to go away to Worcester tomorrow also.
1777 November 6 (Thursday). Reuben went to his uncles in order to his going to Worcester, but though he tarried there all the forenoon, yet he went not. It rained, and the Horse he was to have rid got away. But p.m. he returned and went to my Business — husking.
1777 November 7 (Friday). [illegible] Lambson himself went to Worcester — and in my stead [torn] with the Printer for the remainder of the Year’s Papers. This Evening finishes the 53d Year since the Gathering of this Church and my Ordination as Pastor thereof.
1777 November 8 (Saturday). [Ble]ssed be God for the Light of this Morning which begins the 54th year of my Ministry. I kept the Day retrospectively and religiously. May God most merciful and gracious forgive all the many and great Defects I have been guilty of, through so long a Course, and especially the Deficiencys and Miscarriages [of the?] Year past! And now I am grown old and my Death [must?] be near, may God grant I may improve my Time [and?] all my Other Talents to the divine Glory, and the eternal good of Precious Souls! O that I might be quickened in Proportion to my Age and the short Remains of my Life yet to come! Hear that Major Asa Brigham is Dead.
1777 November 9 (Sunday). I preached a.m. again on Eph. 2.1.2 and closed with some Remarks and Observations on the Day. May almighty [Grace?] succeed my feeble Efforts. Preached p.m. again on Ps. 119.71 and carryed on the Subject of the Benefit of Afflictions from pag. 24 to 29 inclusively. At Eve repeated the forenoon Sermon. N.B. Mrs. P________ read in the Study Masons Discourse on Phil. 3.13.14.
1777 November 10 (Monday). Reuben did not come home last night. This morning I went to Neighbour [Lambsons?]; and found that Reuben was gone to Lancaster, to my Disappointment — but came home after Dinner, and it being rainy shelled Corn. I am much disappointed in not having my Island Field plowed; which had been occasioned by Reubens being so much gone in the Weeks past.
1777 November 11 (Tuesday). My Older Oxen are come from Squire Bakers Templetown Pasture; I went to the Squires, and committed them to him to kill and dispose of as He thinks best for my Advantage: but he must provide me a good Cow for my Beef, and I think I must have at least a side of one of them. P.M. I walked to Mr. Tainters to the Family Meeting and preached again on Phil. 4.6 to p. 9. Which may God bless to us for Christs sake!
1777 November 12 (Wednesday). Elias returned from Coi’s Hill, Brookfield but from Baldwins of Shrewsbury only, this morning. He has brought but 4 Creatures out of six — but an Heiffer I designed to kill, in missing. See the 5th. I wrote to my Daughter Baldwin and to Mr. David [torn]cock Taverner, with Notification to be set up at [torn] Public Houses. Committed them to the Care of Mr. [torn] [Work?] of Royalston. Read Sir William Temples works Vol. 1.
1777 November 13 (Thursday). Visit Asa Forbush who has come home from the Army, sick, His Mother still very much wrought down by her illness. Prayed there. P.M. Read Sir William Temple. Mr. William May came and lodged here, but put up his Horse at Deacon Woods.
1777 November 14 (Friday). Mr. Joseph Bond came and with Brecks help, killed a [Red?] Steer for me. Mr. May and Mr. Bond dine here. P.M. Mr. May [torn]
1777 November 15 (Saturday). We are disappointed in the Worcester Spy: no body goes for it. Deacon Livermore dined with us. Sent by him to Mr. Whitney to [torn] after [Thanksgiving?].
1777 November 16 (Sunday). A.M. on Eph. 2.1.2. P.M. on Ps. 25.10 and used the last sermon on Ps. 39.9. Read the Proclamation for Thanksgiving.
1777 November 17 (Monday). Though a rough, cold, stormy Season, visit Mrs. Ann Maynard and prayed with her. Dined at squire Whipples. Visit at Mr. Greens. Went to Mr. Gleasons. Stayed there while he shod the Mare. At Eve was at Mr. Amasa Maynards in the Snow. Got home safe. D.G.
1777 November 18 (Tuesday). Visit poor [Benj. Garfield?] under a sad sore and prayed with him. P.M. Visit the Widow Ruhamah [Pratt?], sick of a Fever and prayed. Called at Mr. Benjamin Fays, who is uneasy because I dont proceed to propound him to the Church, though he is in sad Contest with Mr. Thomas Whitney. Called to see Ensign Fay and his Wife. Also at squire Bakers, who has my Fatt Oxen to kill and dispose of.
1777 November 19 (Wednesday). Elias goes to Capt. Maynards for a Barrell of Cyder given by Mr. Ebenezer Maynard. At Night came the worthy Dr. Ezra Styles, on his journey from New-Haven to Portsmouth and lodged here.
1777 November 20 (Thursday). Public Thanksgiving. Dr. Stiles preached on Gen. 49, v. 22, 23, 24. A very acceptable Entertainment. May God bless it to us, and may it please God to grant His servant Wisdom and Direction in the weighty Affair before [torn] respecting the Presidentship of Yale College, to which [he has?] [torn] Election, and concerning which he asks my Advice. N.B. a Number [of Persons?], namely Lt. Bond, Mr. Joseph Harrington, Mr. Ebenezer [torn], Mr. Jonathan Forbes and [blank] came in after the Exercise to manifest their Acceptance of what was delivered, and [torn]sult me touching the printing [illegible] but they d[torn]d to consult the Town on the [matter at their Meeting?] tomorrow. May God be pleased to [illegible] this [torn] Glory and our highest Benefit! I am thankful for [torn] Providence which brought Dr. Stiles to us, and enabled him to [torn] so agreeably and profitably.
“This day a Gen1 Thanksgiving through Mass. & Connecticutt. I preached at Westboro in Mass. for Revd & venerable Mr Parkman on Gen. xlix, 22-26. The people immedy requested a copy for the Press, but the Sermon being a hasty production only a few minutes of that Mornings Composition & mostly extempore, I declined it. Mr Parker [sic] persuaded me to accept the Presidency.” Franklin Bowditch Dexter, ed., The Literary Diary of Ezra Stiles, D.D., LL.D., President of Yale College (3 vols.; New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1901), 2:230. Stiles also noted that Parkman “gave me an account of Pres. Leveretts Presidency at Harv. Coll. where he was educated under him. Mr Parkman shewed me a Volume of his Academic Manuscript containg Copies of Brattles Logic, Leveretts Philosophy or Physics, Flynts Geography &c. Mr. Leverett was a fine classic Scholar but seldom made public Orations, not so often as Mr. Holyoke. Mr. Levrett great and awful in Government.” Ibid., 2:231.
1777 November 21 (Friday). Dr. Stiles leaves [torn] Cambridge in his way to Portsmouth. Wrote by him to [torn]on respecting Elias’s staying at home till the Vaca[torn] [illegible] shall [torn]turn, he may have a Waitership [torn] [How?] dines here, being at work for Breck. Suse [and Sophy?] [torn] down to Col. Brighams, where [torn] an Entertainment. Mr. Whitney and his Lady are there. Town Meeting, for [illegible] my Wood, Sallery, Soldiers Families etc. Mr. Joseph Harrington came and ask’d me to head a Paper for Subscriptions to printing Dr. Stiles’ Sermon.
1777 November 22 (Saturday). Young [Forsdick?] here going to Cambridge; and by him I write to Mrs. Hicks about her son James, his Chapt Hands and Feet. Elias brings me return from Squire Baker that they who he employs in Business have killed my fat Oxen — the weight of which [blank].
1777 November 23 (Sunday). Preached a.m. on Eph. 2.4.5. P.M. delivered sermon on Heb. 12.23 to the End of p. 9, omitting p. 1. After the public Exercise Visit old Mrs. Ruhamah Pratt and prayed with her.
1777 November 24 (Monday). Reuben Lambson (or Lamson) is in such Earnestness to go away, though he has not filled up his lost time by Eight Days, that his uncle Paul undertaking for 4 of them and himself to either serve or drop [the pay?] of 4 more, I payed him 45 Dollars, which with 12 [torn] paid him heretofore made 57. The remaining three, which I have not paid, is to[torn] shooe Leather and the Deduction aforesaid, or his further service. Upon which he went off in Haste.
Mr. Nathaniel Sherman of New-Haven, came, dined and lodged. I Headed a paper for subscriptions to print Dr. Stiles’s late Thanksgiving Sermon, at the Desire of Mr. Joseph Harrington.
Town Meeting. I’m informed that they vote £100 for my sallery, and 42£ for my Wood — viz. for 35 Cord, at [blank] Dollars per Cord.
1777 November 25 (Tuesday). I was prevented going to Ministers Meeting at Stow, by the Stormy Weather. Dr. Hall of Sutton called here in his way to Boston. Mr. Sherman dined and p.m. left us. Breck papered his lesser Room; and Elias [helps?] him great part of the Day and the Evening. I am sorry [torn] [Loss?] of his time.
1777 November 26 (Wednesday). Sophy has been at Mr. [illegible] yesterday, brings from them the Desire of Miss [ilegible and torn] of Ipswich, who is at her uncle’s, and is very ill, that [torn] visit her: for which reason this Morning I [went — ?] called at Neighbour [torn] (who has great pain etc. [torn] his Sore). Dr. Hawes with me [torn] to [torn] [found?] him better: In the road there [torn] two Grandsons Ebenezer and Elias who had been down at M[torn] I believe [torn] Ebenezers Wife and Child were in [torn] I did not know [torn] they were returning to Bro [torn] dined at Mr. [Stones?]. On my Road back met [torn] who has begun to preach, and a [torn] Kinsman [torn] to Dedham. I called at [Mr.?] William Woods’s to see [torn] [stranger?], who is sick there; one William [torn]. Made a Visit at Mr. Andrews’s — discoursed and prayed with the [torn] woman abovesaid. Mrs. P________ visits at Cousen Maynards. The [torn].
1777 November 27 (Thursday). Mrs. Mary Crosby (Widow) who has lived here for more than two years, now leaves us. Mr. John Harrington by the Direction of the select me of this Town, takes her into his Waggon, to transport her to Boston. May god graciously restrain her from Vice, convert her to Himself, and eternally Save her!
N.B. Elias so looses his time from Day to Day that I am full of Trouble, and I could not but complain and resent it.
1777 November 28 (Friday). Elias goes in search of my Heiffer and steer missing from Coi’s Hill. The Widow Eunice Cook from Douglass dines here. Dr. Hall coming from Boston was here in his Way home. Mrs. P______ walked to Squire Bakers: and Mr. Lambson visits us.
1777 November 29 (Saturday). A very tedious storm of Rain — but through the Mercy and Goodness of God we have shelter, Fuel, Health and comfortable supplys. May the Great Name of [our?] Preserver and Benefactor be magnifyed. I pity those [torn]oor and destitute, and peculiarly the sick. May God graciously [torn] supply and heal! But a Number of Capt. Maynards Children, having the Meazles, I hope are well provided for, though I know not how my son Alexanders Family is, being visited with that Distemper, himself being gone a Journey after [illegible] [not?] returned yester Day.
1777 November 30 (Sunday). Preached a.m. from Ps. 73.28 but carryed on the Subject from Mat. 17.4. Administered the Lords supper. P.M. repeated sermon on Heb. 12.28 and finished it. A Dark Day, as to the Weather — but Darker as to Attendance, there being but few at Meeting, or at Communion.