1768 December 1 (Thursday). Thanksgiving. I preached on Rev. 19.6.7. Many Strangers, I understand, were at Meeting. May it please God to accept our Sacrifices! Master Jamison dines with us. At Eve I married Thomas Hale junior of Brookfield and Ruth Hardy, Daughter of Mr. Phinehas Hardy.
1768 December 2 (Friday). Read chiefly in Vol. 1 of Admirable and memorable Historys of our Times (but writ above an hundred years since). Was at Mr. Nurse’s and Settle Accounts with him: and paid all as we supposed.
1768 December 3 (Saturday). Rode to Southborough. Bought 1 3/4 Broadcloth of Capt. Ward, who gave in 1/2 Quarter of Cloth besides (it being a Remnant) and 1/4 of Tea. Mr. Stone to Westborough. I lodged there.
1768 December 4 (Sunday). I preached at Southborough on Phil. 1.21 a. and p.m. Returned home at Evening. Mr. Stone preached here on Ezra 9.8, his late Thanksgiving Sermon. P.M. he preached on 1 Chron. 17.13. I met him in the Rain going home. Mrs. P________ was gone over to Capt. Maynards, their young Child being extreme bad.
1768 December 5 (Monday). Before sunrise Solomon Maynard came for me to go to Capt. Maynards. I went presently — but the Child expired just before I got there. I prayed with them. Captain had met with a bad Fall and hurt him much especially in his Back. My Wife had been up with them in their Distresses almost all night. I now brought her home. Temple (who worked for me last Saturday in building me an Hovel at the East End of the Barn and had lodged here till this morning) goes to work at Lt. Bakers. P.M. Dr. Hawes and his wife make us a Visit.
1768 December 6 (Tuesday). Preached at Mr. Daniel Hardys on Joh. 13.17 to p. 6. May God add His Blessing! N.B. Mr. Jonah Warrin and Mr. Hardy accost me about the 99 just persons in Mat. 18.12, which they say I preached upon some years ago; and gave a sense they did not like, whereas I gave them the Sense of learned Expositors upon it. Sarah to Capt. Maynards.
1768 December 7 (Wednesday). Mrs. P________ and I ride to Capt. Maynards at their Request by Sarah, to dine there. P.M. attend the Burying of their Child, Elizabeth.
1768 December 8 (Thursday). Full of Concern that Alexander does not come from Sturbridge in order to his going to Framingham. Persis Newton here to work. She is making a Coat for Elias, of Cloth I have bought at Capt. Wards of Southborough. Mr. Batheric at Eve.
1768 December 9 (Friday). The Twins, Joseph and Benjamin Rice, lately come from Annapolis, came to See me. N.B. Persis had finished Elias’s Coat before noon, and went home, though she began it but little before noon yesterday.
1768 December 10 (Saturday). Wrote again to Alexander and Send it to Deacon Wood for Conveyance. Mr. John Mead here, and wish earnestly I could make any good Impression upon him. May God pity him! We are much grieved on the Account of Alexander.
1768 December 11 (Sunday). Omitt Reading still it being Stormy. Preached on 2 Cor. 5.5. The former part of the v. a.m., the latter p.m., but therefrom carryed on the Discourse begun from Heb. 2.15, which a Variety of Providences had caused me to discontinue. Was my self so affected therewith that I can’t but wish that others also might be so. Mrs. Maynard dined with us. At Night I gave solemn Warning to my Children etc.
1768 December 12 (Monday). Am exceeding uneasy at Alexanders Delay. Deacon Wood and Mr. Tainter killed a Cow for me — weighed, the Quarters 332. And an Hog. Miss Pamela Mellen came, and lodges here. Mr. Gleason new setts and corks my mares Shooes: for I know not what is before me. Desire to committ all my Case to God!
1768 December 13 (Tuesday). Ride over to Capt. Maynard as the Principal Friend I can trust with my distressing Trouble. He can’t go to Day, would go tomorrow early; but will Send his son John forthwith, and he goes accordingly to Sturbridge to see why my son does not come down. I rode to Mr. Whitney’s at Northborough to see his Wife, who was delivered of a Child last Saturday Evening. They having called him Thomas Lambert. I dined there (having called to see Mrs. Martyn). Returned at Evening. Found my son Alexander here. He tells me he went to Framingham last Saturday Night — was marryed last Evening to Mr. Browns Daughter Kezia. Deacon Wood, Mr. Tainter and Mr. Zebulun Rice here to cutt out and salt up my Beef and Pork, which was killed yesterday. The Cow’s Quarters weighed [blank]. The Hog weighed 253.
1768 December 14 (Wednesday). Alexander setts out early for Sturbridge. Hear the sorrowfull News of the Death of Mr. John Curtis (son of Capt. Curtis) of Worcester by a Cart, on Waltham plain last might. Mr. John Wood comes at Eve and confirms it, having come from thence and seen the Corps. O what a Warning to be always ready! The Lord grant me His Grace!
1768 December 15 (Thursday). Ruth Bellows comes again to spin here. N.B. Mr. [blank] Child here last Evening to desire me to preach at their House: as Mr. Jonah Warrin had been here to request me to Preach at his when the next private Meeting shall return.
1768 December 16 (Friday). Mr. Elisha Corben of Dudley, here, to desire me to go to a Council which he is calling, assisted by thirteen others of the Church being under Grievance by Some late transactions of the Church there but I utterly refuse to go: direct him to Mr. Maccarty.
1768 December 17 (Saturday). Very Short of Wood. The Door wholly empty. The Baker Team brings Some at Eve: but I don’t love to be thus reduced.
1768 December 18 (Sunday). Omitted Reading, this Short, cold Stormy Day. Preached on Eccl. 3.14. On Occasion of Several Sorrowfull Deaths of late, viz. Mr. Curtis’s and Dr. Young’s last Tuesday Night. This latter (Dr. Joseph Young of Hopkinton) was killed by an heavy Rider falling upon Him as he was creeping through a log Fence, in the Evening after the 13th. May God grant His Blessing to accompany both His Word and Providence! Master Jamison dined with us.
1768 December 19 (Monday). Visit and pray with Lt. Thomas Forb. who is very ill, of nervous hypochondriac Disorders. Hear of 3d Person killed last Tuesday — one [blank] of Holliston.
1768 December 20 (Tuesday). Rode with Mrs. P________ to our Shrewsbury Corner. Visit Mr. William Nurse and Mr. Artemas Bruce’s Wife, who is very weakly and long confined. Dined at the Widow Smiths (or her son in Law, Child’s). She is still in a very distressed, melancholy, desponding state. I preached there (according to appointment last Lords Day). My Text was the forepart of Ps. 43 — to page 10 of the Discourse. As we returned we visited Mr. Moses Brigham who also is very weak and has not been at Meeting a great while. We supped there.
1768 December 21 (Wednesday). I visit Mr. Williams as I pass over to Mr. Whipples saw Mill after Plank. Mr. Cushing from Ashburnham — and lodges here. He brings me Mr. Maccartys sermon on the Execution of Arthur, from the Author.
1768 December 22 (Thursday). Mr. Cushing dines here. P.M. returns to Shrewsbury notwithstanding the Storm.
1768 December 23 (Friday). Mr. Keys of Ashby here and dines. Wrote to Billy by him and Send Samuels late Letter, of the Condition of Boston etc.
1768 December 24 (Saturday). Mr. Ephraim Sherman calls, in his Return from Portsmouth. He has been to get the Patent for Croydon Township renewed.
1768 December 25 (Sunday). Still omitt Reading publickly. Preached again on 2 Cor. 5.5, but carryed on the Design begun from Heb. 2.15. P.M. Preached on Joh. 1.41, repeating part of my Discourse on that Text. Began at page 11, but with some Introduction concerning Christ’s-Mass. Forasmuch as, though we don’t keep the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord yet we would not be behindhand in paying our highest Regards to the Great and Glorious Redeemer. O that I might be able, with true Spiritual Joy and Gladness, to declare, I have found the Messiah, which [“]is the Christ.” Might also many Others! It presses my mind and Heart.
1768 December 26 (Monday). Mr. Hall of Sutton going to Boston, calls and dines here. I write by him to Messrs. Mein and Fleming to continue the Chronicle another Year. He gives me account of Mr. Edward Putnams Case among them, and of Mr. Corbens Case at Dudley. Relates what he met with himself from [Dane?] Campb: Esq. Towards Evening I went in my Sleigh to see Lt. Forbush again — found him Sitting up, but Still much troubled with Hyp.
1768 December 27 (Tuesday). Having last Evening brought home a Gander which I have bought for 15/ of Dr. Hawes, this morning I went to Lt. Bakers and got a Goose, which he gave me; and likewise an Arm full (5 1/2 lbs.) of Tobacco which he has brought from Providence and Sells at 3/ per lb. Mr. George Smith is here at Dinner Time, and he eats with us. Old Mr. Seth Morse here; but alas! in poor Trim. P.M. Mrs. P________ and I ride in the Sleigh to See Capt. Jonas Brigham, and his Wife and Family: but Captain was not at Home. Dr. Hawes and his Wife there.
1768 December 28 (Wednesday). [No entry.]
1768 December 29 (Thursday). Letters from Rochester of the 21, by way of Grafton, certifying of their Happiness: especially Suse’s Health. Agreeable to an Invitation Mr. John Wood made, My Wife and I rode up there, and after Spending the Evening and handsomely Supping with them we returned well pleased with the Visit we had made, except that I did not go in to t’other House to see old Mrs. Woods, who lodges at the Deacons and has done so for some Time: and Should be heartily glad that no more of Religious Conversation can be introduced into our Discourse: that God may be glorifyed and the Company more profited than by our Common Methods of entertaining one another.
1768 December 30 (Friday). [No entry.]
1768 December 31 (Saturday). Mr. Hall of Sutton only calls to inform me he had delivered my Letter to Mein and Fleming for the Continuance of the Chronicle, and other Letters to my Son Samuel etc. but brought nothing for me.