1756 February 1 (Sunday). Read 1 Kings 7 to 23 v. Preached a. and p.m. on Dan. 4.27. Read p.m. Mat. 9 from v. 18 to the End. Mrs. Chamberlin dyed in the morning. This is the 4th Death of late in that House — but what an Awful Breach This!
May God Support the poor Man under Such grievous Trials!
1756 February 2 (Monday). It was Somewhat rainy and the Roads very heavy, yet I ventured out to the Funeral of Mrs. Chamberlin and truely this was a sore Bereavement indeed!
Six Children are [illegible] all of them confined still with sickness: a Daughter of about 12, the Eldest Daughter living is very bad. I was also at Mr. Ithamar Bellows’, to see his Daughter Mary, who is past Speaking to; his Wife [likewise?] is ill. May God in his infinite Mercy prevent the further Spread of this mortal Disease! My Wife’s Rheumatism increases — but Lucy, through divine Goodness, recovers.
1756 February 3 (Tuesday). A fine, pleasant Day, as to Weather; but a gloomy Day as to Trouble, for now another is dead (Mary Bellows) of the wasting Sickness. O that God would Stay His Hand, and not inflict as we deserve!
1756 February 4 (Wednesday). My Wife is Still exercised with Rheumatism, but Lucy, to our Joy, through divine Favor daily recovers. I attended the Funeral of Mary Bellows junior — her Mother grows worse.
1756 February 5 (Thursday). The Weather generally for some time Southerly; the Earth open; the Frost going out of the Ground — tis feared this Air is insalubrious, and that the Distemper among us will have advantage hereby. We hear the Doctors Willson and Brigham are Sick. Dr. Chase also complains much of Fever and Canker. I preached at old Mr. Bradish’s on Rev. 22.14. May God enable me to understand and Do His Commandments that I may have happy Share in that Blessedness! But what abundant Reason to be deeply humbled that I fall so extremely Short! And what infinite need of the Mediation and Righteousness of Jesus Christ, in Order to my Acceptance with God!
1756 February 6 (Friday). Reckoned and settled an old Account with Mr. Ephraim Bruce late Collector. This I have the more reason to take notice of as I have so innumerable Times requested this Settlement of him and it was always deferred. At Eve came Mr. Daniel Forbush and brought a live Pig, which weighed 90 lb. at 12 d. per pound. N.B. He tells me that Several Friends have desired that I would finish the Affair of the Towns arrearage for the Year 1744 by giving a full Discharge. I told him it was not so much the Money which made me refuse, as the Injustice, and the unsuitable Treatment I met with from them which they ought to be made sensible of: but I thanked him for his kind Office, and told him I would think of what was best to be done, and prepare something against the Meeting next Monday.
1756 February 7 (Saturday). Billy has cleared up my few Oates and brought them in. I had chiefly prepared for the Sabbath ensuing Some time agoe yet fearing there was not a sufficiency, and my thoughts running out further in my Subject I wrote considerable more. May God affect my own Heart there with! And O that I might always first feel and Obey what I prepare as the Counsel of God!
1756 February 8 (Sunday). Read a.m. 1 K. 7 from v. 23. Preached a. and p.m. on Dan. 4.27. P.M. read Mat. 10. O that every thing that Obstructs the Success of the Word of God might be removed, and that the Divine Counsel might be acceptable and be obeyed by us all!
1756 February 9 (Monday). Billy went to Mr. Cutlers in Sudbury to change Barley for Malt. P.M. came Messrs. Daniel Forb. and Solomon Woods as they went to the Adjournment of the Town Meeting at Capt. Maynards. I had prepared a Paper directed to the Moderator but I sent it Somewhat unwillingly by them considering the different Frame they were in from what I expected. However, I committed to God who has the Hearts of all Men in His Hands, the whole Affair, and desire humbly to repose my Self in His Goodness. At Evening those Brethren returned from the Town Meeting and Young Deacon Forb. with them, and they reported that my Paper was read, and after a few had Spoke (Lt. Wood and Mr. Francis Whipple against it, and Lt. Forb. whether something might not be done upon it) it was delivered to the Town Clerk (the said Mr. Whipple). No further regard was shewn it. May God grant me wisdom and Grace Suitably to conduct under such Treatment! And God be gracious to them and forgive them!
1756 February 10 (Tuesday). A number of Men, Mr. Daniel Forb., Deacon Forb., Moses Warrin, Neighbour Pratt, Neighbour Eli[e]zer Rice, etc. clear up the Burying Place. The 3 first dined here and I asked divers besides but they were provided. N.B. Wrote to Capt. Stevens of Groton and desired Lt. Tainter to deliver it to Coll. Lawrence, the Representative of that Town. P.M. The Precinct Meeting for Debts, was accompanyed (according to the Warrant) with an Article concerning my Wood. It was tryed, but though there was a major Vote, yet it was but of one. And they could not obtain a vote of how it Should be got. So that it was revoked. However, there was a Subscription, which Deacon Bond brought me at Eve. God grant me an Equal Mind whatever befalls me!
1756 February 11 (Wednesday). Wrote to Messrs. Edes and Gill for their News Paper. This I did at the Desire and Cost of three of my Neighbours, viz. Messrs. Nat. Whitney, Daniel Forb. and Zebulun Rice. Was at Mr. Ebenezer Rice’s and reckoned and settled with him; as I did also with Mr. Beeton. Mary Lattiner here about her joining to the Church.
1756 February 12 (Thursday). Am in much Concern what to do in providing for my son William, it being high time he Should be put out an Apprentice since I can’t (as I Should much rather choose) give him a Liberal Education. At Eve Lt. Tainter brings various Things from Boston for us: particularly 20£ of Wool. N.B. he has found a Purse on the Road with a Quantity of money both silver and Gold.
1756 February 13 (Friday). Thomas Drury (by whom I sent to Messrs. Edes and Gill) returns without having delivered my Letter, or seeing the men. Thomas and Lucy ride in my Chair to Brookfield. Messrs. Snow and Gale at work in preparing to lay my Kitchin Floors.
1756 February 14 (Saturday). [No Entry.]
1756 February 15 (Sunday). Read 1 King 8 to v. 23. Preached on Heb. 12.29, repeating what I had heretofore delivered on that Text, but with Alterations and Additions. The Occasion was Several, late remarkable Judgments of God, not only Malignant Fever among our selves, but very Observable Desolations of great Citys abroad, by Fires and Earthquake. Ex. gr. Constantinople, in which last Sept. 25,000 Houses and above 800 Persons were destroyed. P.M. read Mat. 11 and Preached on Mat. 16.24 and May God give His Special Blessing!
1756 February 16 (Monday). Brother Hicks here, going to Boston on the Affair of Elijah Collins. I visited Mr. Ithamar Bellows’ Wife and Daughter, who are sick. It is Still open, moderate Weather. An uncommon Winter. Heard that Dr. Brigham dyed yesterday.
1756 February 17 (Tuesday). Spring like Weather. Read Dr. Gill against Mr. Dickinson on Infant Baptism. Received considerable sum of Money of Deacon Forb. — above 50£ Old Tenor in Gold.
1756 February 18 (Wednesday). It being a pleasant Day, I walked over to t’other House. My son not at home, but I renewed my Desires and Instructions to my Daughter in Law, respecting her Making a profession of Religion. N.B. her Father called at my House this Morning as he was in his way from his son Bonds to his Brother Davids Funeral. I made a Visit at Mr. Ebenezer Maynards.
1756 February 19 (Thursday). The Winds exceeding high last night. Windy and Cold to Day. I rode to Marlborough to the Funeral of Dr. Samuel Brigham. Neighbour Pratt favored me with his Horse — visited the widow of the late Mr. Elisha Ward. Dined at Mr. Smiths, where was also Mr. Stone. I prayed before the Corps were carryed out. This Death is much lamented. May God Support the Relatives under the Sore Bereavement especially our dear Kinswoman. I returned home at Evening. Thomas is come back from Brookfield. My Daughter Forbush, through God’s Goodness has another Daughter born on the 17th. May our Covenant God command His Blessing to rest upon her! And make her a rich Blessing! Ebenezer here at Evening.
1756 February 20 (Friday). Mr. Moses Twitchell dined here. At Eve settled with Mr. Jonah Warrin. My Wife much Exercised with Rheumatic Pains, and Clouds before her Eyes. Thomas so ill he is confined to the House.
1756 February 21 (Saturday). A very unusual Sight this Morning: the Earth Covered with Snow; which we have not seen this great While. Thomas no better.
1756 February 22 (Sunday). A.M. delivered an Expository Exercise on 1 K. 8 to 21. P.M. read Mat. 12. Preached on Mark 8.34. May God grant me to be one of the true, gracious, Cross-bearers! My Son Thomas keeps House yet.
1756 February 23 (Monday). Messrs. Cushing and Martyn dined here. The former requests me to assist at a Fast in Shrewsbury next Thursday appointed by the Church on Account of Mr. Samuel Wheelock who remains in a distracted Condition. Mr. Martyn came with a View to going to Mendon with Mr. Stone, to consult Mr. Dor upon Woodstock affairs. Both of them return home unsuccessful.
Mr. Cushing, because I am going to Boston (by leave and help of God), Mr. Martyn, because Mr. Stone does not come, but sends to me a Letter of the Sickness and Mortality among them in Southborough; which prevents his going; or meeting Mr. Martyn here. P.M. I visited at Mr. Biglows and at Mr. Jonah Warrins. High Winds in the night.
1756 February 24 (Tuesday). Sat out, on my sons Mare, for Boston. Mr. Stone had sent to me, but the Message had not arrived, to assist him in a Fast next Thursday in Southborough on Account of the Sickness there. N.B. five lay dead yesterday in that place. Old Mr. Graves and his wife were buryed there to day in one grave. When I got to Mr. Bridge’s at Framingham it was so cold and late that I tarried there over Night.
1756 February 25 (Wednesday). Sharp Cold Morning but I prosecuted my Journey, to Mr. Woodwards of Weston and obtained a promise of him to go on Thursday to the Assistance of Mr. Stone. Dined at Mr. Cushings, but without him. At Newtown took Capt. Thomas Prentice with me to Mr. John Rogers’s to talk with him about his taking my son William Apprentice and to teach him the Smiths and Clock-Makers Business. N.B. Capt. Prentice’s wife Sick. At Boston put up at Proctors; and lodged at my Brother Parkmans. The Coldest night of a long time. One James Allen, a French man, who has been burnt out, at Hopkinton, was with me at Framingham, to desire the Charity of our Congregation.
1756 February 26 (Thursday). Visited my Sister Rebecca. N.B. her Negro woman dead Since I was last there. At the Public Lecture, Mr. Cooper preached an excellent though Short Sermon on 1 Cor. 6.11. Dined at my Kinsman Winters. P.M. Settled my Account with Mrs. Stoddard. Visited Mr. Prince. At Eve at Mr. Lowders. Lodged at Brother Samuels. It was a Cold Day, but I enjoy, through God’s Goodness, Comfort and Health.
1756 February 27 (Friday). My Business required haste. It was my Wish and endeavour to get up to Weston by 2 p.m. to preach Mr. Woodwards Lecture — but It was a Cold morning So that people stirred early very unwillingly and I had much to do which I could not dispatch yesterday. Got only as far as Mrs. Negus’s by dinner time. Dined there. At Capt. Prentice’s found his Spouse very low. Prayed with her. Mrs. Cotton there. At parting my Friend was greatly distressed, under the apprehension of the very dangerous Condition of one so near to him. Mr. Rogers gives me no determinate answer about Billy. Lodged at Mr. Williams at Weston. How sorrowful (alas!) that Such Talents Should be buryed in Obscurity!
1756 February 28 (Saturday). Mr. Williams gives me Some Account of the Conduct of the Gales among them and what a Sorrowfull Condition the whole Family is in. Called at Mr. Woodwards — find that it would be very difficult to attempt any thing in favour of Mr. Williams preaching again. Dined at Mr. Bridge’s. N.B. Sent Rev. Mr. Badger of Natick a Pamphlet, the Oeconomy of human Life, by an Oriental Bramin, in the room of that which I borrowed of him, and sent back but never arrived to his Hands. I sent this by Mr. Joseph Graves of Natick, who called with me at Dr. Hemingways. When I got to Mr. Stones heard that Mr. David Burnap dyed last night, in Southborough. Got home in safety and found my House in safety — Blessed be God! Our great Preserver and Benefactor!
1756 February 29 (Sunday). Read a. and p.m. Mat. 13 and preached both a. and p.m. on v. 9-17. O that God would grant us an Ear, and enable us to hear! Save us from Spiritual Judgment, and grant us the Special Blessings which are the genuine Fruit of distinguishing Privileges rightly improved! Mr. Martyn not well, many of the North side here at Meeting. Sir Gardner and Mr. John Martyn junior dined here.