October 3, 1737

1737 October 3 (Monday).  Catechised at the Meeting House.  Judge Dudley[1] on his return from Springfield made us a visit, and dined with us.  Lydia Cutting left us.

[1]Forbes: Paul Dudley, afterwards Chief Justice of the Province, at this time a judge of the Superior Court, born in 1675, died in 1751.  He was the son of Gov. Joseph Dudley, of Massachusetts.  He studied law in London.  He bequeathed £100 (about $666) to Harvard College for the support of an annual lecture, called, from its founder, the Dudleian lectures.  He was a Fellow of the Royal Society, and wrote on natural history and against the Church of Rome.

Seven years after this visit to Mr. Parkman, Judge Dudley had the famous “Dudley parting-stone” erected in Roxbury, where it still stands, with the inscriptions which has guided so many travelers for more than a hundred and fifty years,


“The Parting Stone.  1744.  P. Dudley.”

And on one side, “Dedham and Rhode Island,” on the other, “Cambridge and Watertown.”

He had been Speaker of the House and member of the Executive Council.  Judge Sewall writes of him: “Thus, while with pure hands and an upright heart he administered justice in the Circuit thro’ the Province, he gained the general esteem and veneration of the people.”

The town of Dudley is named “in token of respect to William and Paul Dudley.”

Walett: Paul Dudley (Harvard 1690), later Chief Justice of Massachusetts.  Sibley, IV, 42-54.

October 4, 1737

1737 October 4 (Tuesday).  Mr. Jarvis, Sister Lydia[1] and I rode to Cambridge.  Mrs. Susé Champney[2] there.  Mr. Jarvis lodged with me at Father Champney’s.[3]  N.B. I rode down to Mr. Dana’s Tavern[4] about my Wife’s Trunk.

[1]Walett: Lydia Champney.

[2]Walett: Susanna Champney, cousin of the first Mrs. Parkman.

[3]Walett: Samuel Champney, Sr., father of Parkman’s first wife.

[4]Forbes: Dana’s Tavern stood near the centre of the town of Brookline and was a famous hostelry for many years.  It was a large gambrel-roofed house and stood until 1816, when it was destroyed by fire.

A story of the old tavern is given in Historic Sketches of Brookline, by Harriet F. Woods, in which Tom Cook (see Journal, Aug. 27, 1779) figures as chief actor.

She writes: “There was a notorious thief, well known in Brookline and the adjoining towns by the name of Tom Cook.  He had many eccentricities, among which was a habit of stealing from the rich to give to the poor.  In horse-stealing he was especially expert.  He was frequently arrested, convicted and sentenced to short terms of imprisonment at the ‘Castle’ (now Fort Independence), that being then the common prison for all offenders in Boston and vicinity.

“On one occasion Tom stole a goose from a countryman’s wagon, which was under the shed at Dana’s Tavern; not, however, with generous designs for any of his poor protegés, but for the satisfying of his own appetite.  But as an uncooked goose would be about as unsatisfactory as no goose at all, Tom resorted to the old schoolhouse, — school not being in session, to cook and devour it.”

Squire Sharpe’s house was nearest to the schoolhouse, and Squire Sharpe was a grandson of Capt. Robert, and a nephew of Mistress Susanna.

“The Squire, with his sharp eye on the interests of the town, discovered a smoke arising from the schoolhouse chimney, and as ‘where there is smoke, there must be fire,’ he proceeded to reconnoitre and caught Tom in the very act of roasting the goose.  Laying the strong hand of the law upon him, he made him confess where he got the fowl and march back with it under his own escort to the Tavern, and, before the assembled inmates of the bar-room, gave him his choice to take then and there a public whipping, or be tried and sent to the Castle.  Tom considered briefly and decided to take the whipping.

“The countrymen agreed, and flourished their long whips upon him with such vigor, that Tom’s appetite for roast goose was abated in a summary manner, and the punishment proved more effectual than his various sojourns at the Castle.”

Walett: Jonathan Dana kept a tavern near the center of Brookline.

October 6, 1737

1737 October 6 (Thursday).  N.B. I set out from Cambridge before Day — got to Harrington’s before sun rising from there first at sunrise, but did not get up to Westb. till nigh one.  Visited Hannah Bond, who lay sick at Capt. Forbush.[1]  After that dined at Home.  Young men came to gather my Corn.  Set them to work.


Went to the private meeting at Mr. Townsend’s[2] and preached on 2 Pet. 1.10.  Visited Hannah Bond again.  About 18 or 20 hands husked out all my Corn.  N.B. In my absence Winter Apples gathered in.

[1]Walett: Captain Samuel Forbush of Westborough.

[2]Walett: Joshua Townsend of Westborough.

October 11, 1737

1737 October 11 (Tuesday).  Visited Mrs. Rogers[1] who is sick, Hannah Bond and old Mrs. Pratt.[2]  N.B. overtook some Travellers on Foot with their Muskets: one of them very unmannerly and saucy.  P.M. Mr. Tozer[3] and his wife here.  Old Mr. Rice[4] visited us.  John Clung here.

[1]Walett: Mrs. John Rogers.

[2]Walett: Probably Mrs. John Pratt.

[3]Walett: Richard Tozer of Westborough.

[4]Walett: Edmund Rice, an original settler of Westborough.

October 12, 1737

1737 October 12 (Wednesday).  I went to Worcester to see Hugh Henderson, found him in much the same distressed state that I left him in, but I hope more knowing and acquainted with his Condition and with his Duty.  N.B. Mr. Burr at the Goal with me.  I prayed with him, a multitude attending.  He earnestly desired me to see him again and wishes over and over that I would preach to him.


N.B. When I called at Mr. Cushing’s[1] as I went up, Coll. Woods was there, on his return from Rutland.  As I returned in the evening, there rose a storm of Lightening and Rain.  Mr. Lock came and carried in Corn.

[1]Walett: Reverend Job Cushing of Shrewsbury.

October 16, 1737

1737 October 16 (Sunday).  Mat. 3.1-4.  John 16.8.  N.B. I was called away between 8 and 9 in the morning to see old Capt. Byles, who was very bad with his Throat and at night I visited him again.  N.B. The Congregation disturbed P.M. by the burning of Mr. David Brigham’s House but when people gathered in again, and were composed, I went on with the rest of my sermon.  A very sorrowful Providence!  a great Loss!  but I trust them and all of us to profit by it, that our Hearts may be taken off from temporal transitory Enjoyments.

October 18, 1737

1737 October 18 (Tuesday).  Visited Capt. Byles who is grown exceeding bad again.  Visited the wife of William Rogers Jr. and proceeded to Mr. Brigham’s to see their Desolations.  A Sorrowful Sight!  I desire heartily to sympathize.  Returned to Capt. Byles.[1]  He dyed this evening.  N.B. Mr. Jarvis went to Boston in the morning.  N.B. Mr. Jonathan Forbes[2] at my house in the Evening and after him Messrs. Ed and Benj. Goddard.[3]

[1]Forbes: Capt. Joseph Byles had married Rebecca Forbush, the sister of Jonathan, Samuel and Thomas Forbush.  He lived on the south side of Chauncy Pond.  He was one of the “first inhabitants.”

[2]Forbes: Dea. Jonathan Forbes b. in Marlborough in 1684 – married in 1706, when he was a young man of twenty-two, a woman twice married, with a family of four children.  At this time he was living near the present town reservoir.  He was the first one of the family to write his name Forbes – his older brothers, Samuel and Thomas, and their descendants, being always known by the name of Forbush.  The Massachusetts Gazette of March 31, 1768, says: — “His life was exemplary; his departure in the firm hope of a glorious immortality; his progeny numerous.”

Walett: Deacon Jonathan Forbush was one of the first to change the name to Forbes.

[3]Walett: The Goddards were from Shrewsbury.

October 20, 1737

1737 October 20 (Thursday).  Funeral of Capt. Joseph Byles.  My Spouse, Mrs. Richard Burrough and my Dauter Molly all there with me.  The deceased was a bright example of Diligence and Industry in his calling, Constancy at the House of God, diligent attention to the Worship and Word preached: Truth and Faithfulness to his word and exact Honesty in his Trading.  To which add a singularly manly Heroic Spirit.  Visited old Mrs. Pratt at Eve.  Capt. Eager came home with us.

October 21, 1737

1737 October 21 (Friday).  Closely engaged in my preparations.  At eve Brother William Parkman came from the Council at Concord, which had voted Mr. Whiting[1] unfit to sustain the holy ministry and advised the church of Concord to dismiss him, which they complied with.  N.B. Mr. Francis Pierce here — finished with him about his Boards.  N.B. My Brother left us.  Dr. Gott called in.  P.M. I rode to Shrewsbury and met with Mr. Burr at Mr. Cushing’s.[2]  I proceeded to Worcester and stopped at the Goal at the Grates to speak with the Prisoner and to put him in mind of the preparations needful for him to make in order to his keeping his Last Sabbath.  I lodged at Mr. Burr’s.

[1]Walett: Reverend John Whiting, minister of the First Church in Concord, 1712-1737.

[2]Forbes: Rev. Job Cushing, the first minister of Shrewsbury, pastor of the church there from 1723 to his death in 1760.  He was the father of Col. Job Cushing – also of Rev. John Cushing, who married in 1767 Mr. Parkman’s daughter Sarah.  She lived to be eighty-two years of age and died in 1825.  Mrs. Tuckerman writes of this daughter Sarah, as follows: — “My grandmother married Dr. John Cushing, of Ashburnham, who taught school in Westborough the year after he graduated from Harvard College.  He boarded in the minister’s family, and when he was ordained, at the age of twenty-four, he came back and carried off the daughter as his bride.  This was in 1768.  She was a remarkably bright and capable woman, judging from the family traditions.  There were seven children in that large family younger than she, and she had so much to do that her mother could not spare her the time to go to school when it was kept at intervals.  But she was ambitious to learn, and her father helped her all he could.  She taught herself to write by copying letters with a piece of chalk on the barn floor, for paper and ink were precious in those days, and not to be unduly wasted.”

The house where the Rev. Mr. Cushing lived stood east of the Shrewsbury Town Hall.

October 23, 1737

1737 October 23 (Sunday).  Early in the morning began to write my address to the Prisoner.  A.M. on Eccl. 11.9, a crowded assembly, poor Hugh Henderson present.  P.M. on Job 3.36.  A very great congregation, it being in their apprehension the last Sabbath Sermon the poor Criminal is to hear.  At evening called at Mr. Eaton’s[1] and at the Sheriff’s,[2] who went with me to the Prison.  I interrogated the Prisoner what was the occasion of his coming to this country — whether he had discovered and acknowledged all that was fit and proper for him to reveal?  Whether he had any confederates?  A great number flocked in the Goal when at his Request I prayed with him.  I left him between 8 and 9.  By that I went to Mr. Cushing’s where I intended to lodge.  They were all in Bed wherefore, though cold, I proceeded home to my own House.


N.B. Mr. Jarvis came up last night in a chair.

[1]Walett: Joshua Eaton (Harvard 1735), the first lawyer to settle in Worcester and later the first minister of Spencer.  Sibley, IX, 533-538.

[2]Forbes: The first sheriff of Worcester County was Daniel Gookin, who held the office until 1743.

He was a son of Gen’l Daniel Gookin.  (Worc. Hist.)