1773 November 1 (Monday). Read variously. Joshua Chamberlin brought me Langley on Architecture, enriched with Plates, Plans etc. Mr. Wilder left us. At Eve I went to the Committee for the Meeting House, who sit at Deacon Woods; and carried by Desire of Mr. Seth Morse, my Account of the Boarding etc. of the Workmen: but it was not to Effect. For they would not allow of my making Distinctions of Caruths being with us over the Sabbath — so that I took it again.
1773 November 2 (Tuesday). Miss Suse Brigham came to make Sundry Gowns. I visited old Miss Steward who is very low: also old Mrs. Grow. Mr. Fish and his Wife came there. We dined together. But no word of Controversy between us. I left them to go to the private Meeting at Mr. Tainters, where I preached on Ps. 119.126, 8 pages, and recapitulated to page 10, which God bless to all of us!
1773 November 3 (Wednesday). P.M. Mrs. Godfrey here to be examined. Went through what I could. Lent her Mr. Doolittle on the Lords Supper. Capt. John Tainter of Watertown called to See me.
Thomas Doolittle (1632?-1707), A Treatise Concerning the Lord’s Supper: With Three Dialogues for the Full Information of the Work (19th ed.; Boston, 1700). Evans 909. Subsequent American editions appeared in 1708 (Evans 1349), 1713 (Evans 1606, 39,565), and 1727 (Evans 2865).
1773 November 4 (Thursday). My Son Ebenezer was to have returned from below, last Evening: I expected also Mr. Bradshaw with him: but neither Came. P.M. while I was much engaged came Mr. Cook (the miller) to talk with me about Church Government and wants to have something about the Platform inserted in our Church-Covenant. I told him the Church would not be likely to be pleased with Innovations. But Mrs. Stockwell was waiting to be examined as Candidate for the Communion. She was examined in part. Night approached and therefore I was obliged to defer the rest. Mr. Phinehas Hardy asks 35/ O.T. per Barrell for Cyder.
1773 November 5 (Friday). I Sent Elias to Mr. Phinehas Hardy for 4 Barrells of Cyder, and he Sends me 5 and Apples.
1773 November 6 (Saturday). I am informed that Miss Mary Steward expired this Morning. A Person of Solid understanding and much given to Reading; and esteemed a pious woman.
1773 November 7 (Sunday). This being the last Lords Day in our Ecclesiastical Year, Thanks were given to God for His Goodness and Longsuffering in continuing us for the Space of 49 Years. With Humiliations and Prayers according to the Occasion, Read Ps. 34. Preached on Jonah 1.6. Mr. Nathaniel Oake of Bolton dined here. P.M. Read Rev. XII. Preached again on the Subject of forgiving from Mat. 6.14.15, repeating from page 23 to 32 (N.B. pages 30, 31, 32 Capitulation). I would earnestly beg of God to bless these Exercises both to Me and to the People. In the Evening recollecting find, that since this time 12 Months, I and my Family have been exercised with divers and grievous Frowns of divine Providence. In particular by the Death of my dear Daughter Moore, and by the Sickness of divers of us — Old Mrs. Kelly, Mrs. P________, Hannah, Elias. May we be humbled and (Since they are so recovered) thankful to the Lord our Healer!
1773 November 8 (Monday). Suse Brigham who Stayed here after Meeting yesterday and lodged, works for Sophy and Hannah in making New Crape Gowns — altering etc. etc. Mrs. P________ with me to the Funeral of Miss Mary Steward, AEtatis 85. I prayed. May God Himself teach us hereby etc.!
1773 November 9 (Tuesday). My Children have among them the Life of Patty Saunders: I thought it needful to know what they read: find it a Piece of, I wish, I could say, innocent, Entertainment. But whilst such Amusements are apt to teach Amour, and Intrigue, they are like to engage the mind and ensnare the Heart too far, and to consume too much Time: But besides, they being designed to Polish, they instruct in the fashionable, which are the most pleasing, though corrupt, principles and Ends: The loose, gay Sentiments are also clothed in the ensnaring Language of the Age. These are observable in this Author; though they occur, perhaps more rarely here, than in some other Writings of this kind. The very little regard shewn to our glorious and blessed Savior in this Sort of Compositions, is no Small Defect, in a Christian and Protestant Country: The Apostrophe’s or Exclamations — Lord! — Bless me! etc. — with Signs that the Heart is very remote from the Frames of Devotion, are too vain and irreligious. The Duke of C______ns making so light of his grandson’s deflouring Miss Lucy Hawley, and telling her she had done nothing to be ashamed of, deserves heavy blame — and it is inexcusable to teach young persons to disparage the Ordinance of God, marriage; by shewing that the union of their Affections is the Marriage to be looked for, whereas besides the union of the Affections, we are obliged by the Institution of God devoutly to acknowledge Him in it. I Catechized at the south School House. A Young man, Master Nathan Burnap, keeps the school. He had his Children together and he tarried through the Exercises. There were about 26 Children, and I wish divine Blessing might accompany what was Said, both on the Answers and in the Conclusion. Rev. Whitney and his Brother Lambert made a Visit here, but I saw them not. Mr. Joshua Locks Wife also, from Husuck; but was gone when I returned.
1773 November 10 (Wednesday). Mr. Zebulun Rice here. Mrs. Lock came again.
1773 November 11 (Thursday). Breck and Hannah to Lancaster; the Latter expecting to go to Ashburnham. Having Read, I wrote some Remarks on writings of Amusement and Entertainment. Lent Mr. Silas Hill £6.13.4 Lawful Money, For which he gave me his Note.
1773 November 12 (Friday). Mr. David Clark of Ashburnham came with his Son Benjamin, to live with me till he shall be fourteen years old: He, the said Mr. Clark, Says his son is in his twelfth year. Will be twelve on the Sixth Day of next January. They eat their Dinner here, and tarry to night. My Son Baldwin here: he has sold my Sp[ar?]ked Ox for six pounds thirteen and four pence to Mr. William Watson of Brookfield, for which I have his Note of Hand. Mrs. Stockwell here again to be further Examined — and is to be propounded, though not immediately. This Evening I wrote a memorandum of what Mr. David Clark promised about his Son, but we were interrupted. Deacon Fisher of Wrentham here. I spake to him of his Son Nathans neglect to offer his Confession.
1773 November 13 (Saturday). Mr. Clark in the Morning Signed the Said Memorandum and Jonathan Maynard and my Daughter Sophia witnessed it. He leaves Benjamin here, and setts out for home. Cousen Larkin Williams came in to see me, and was full of Talk in Defence of the Conduct of the Town of Marlborough towards Mr. Smith: and has divers Exceptions against Ministers in general — their settling for sallerys, and presently crying out for more, their preaching old sermons, which were paid for already etc. etc. Breck returns — has been with Hannah quite to Ashburnham and left her there. At Eve Mr. Sumner, going to preach at Southborough, calls here. May it please God to prepare me by his Grace for this Sabbath!
1773 November 14 (Sunday). It being the first sabbath of the Church’s and my Fiftieth year. But by Reason of Mr. Whitneys Request to Change and the [illegible] Argument wherewith he urged it (neither was I at home when he came over on purpose to speak to me) I rode over to Northborough, and preached a. and p.m. on Isa. VI.10. At Eve Mr. Thomas Lambert with me. It was a cold Evening, but Mr. Whitney returned and Mrs. Briggs being very ill, I by Desire went with them to see her. Lodged at Mr. Whitneys.
1773 November 15 (Monday). In returning home I called at Mrs. Martyns and wrote to my son Baldwin at Brookfield, about my Cattle there: also at Ensign Rice’s; at Capt. Maynards but did not see him; at Beetons etc. Dined at home, but presently rode to Mr. Thomas Bonds, who is about to go to Brookfield to drive down Cattle. N.B. Mr. Jacob Snow builds a little House for Breck, and diets with us.
1773 November 16 (Tuesday). Breck (who did not return till Saturday Evening, having accompanyed his Sister Hannah to Ashburnham) goes to Mendon. Lent him 27 Dollars. Breck returned from Mendon the Same Night. Mrs. Thankful Rice (Josephs Mother) brought me, at my desire, the Copy of Mrs. Eunice Rice’s Confession to the Church, and with it the Decree of the Governor and Council dissolving the Marriage etc. She dines here.
1773 November 17 (Wednesday). P.M. Mrs. P________ visits Mrs. Bass. I went at Eve to accompany her home. Capt. Baldwin Sends my Cattle home, viz. three — My Steer of 4 years past, and two heiffers. Six yearlings of his also are drove here to be kept for him the winter ensuing. Issachar Bates and Isaac Baldwin came with them and lodged here. Mr. John Marsh, late Tutor at Cambridge, came from thence here, and lodged. He has taken his leave of College, and they have chose another Tutor in his stead, namely Mr. Gannett.
1773 November 18 (Thursday). Mr. Stone and Mr. Smith made me a brotherly Visit, and dined here, but knew not of the Lecture to Day and were unprepared to preach. Mr. Stone prayed and I preached my Self on Isa. XII.1. Stopped the Church on Account of Mrs. Eunice Rice’s Affair, and on Account of Deacon Tainters Legacy. On the former, did nothing further than to desire Mr. Tainter (who had not been to Boston and therefore had not done any thing for the Church as expected) and Squire Whipple to endeavour to procure Copys of the Evidences in the Case, if they could. On the latter, voted that it Should lye as it was. At Eve Mr. Benjamin Webb (our School-master) here. Sups, but does not lodge with us.
1773 November 19 (Friday). My Son Alexander and his Wife’s sister Ruhamah, accompanyed by Young Mr. Buckminster of Rutland, who is going to preach at Charlestown, came and dined here. At Eve came Mr. Forbes, his Wife and son, returning home from Cape Ann, whither they had been to visit their new-marryed Daughter.
1773 November 20 (Saturday). They pursue their Journey to Brookfield. Alexander returns from Framingham — dines and goes home.
1773 November 21 (Sunday). Omitted Public Reading. Preached on 2 Tim. 1.12, partly on Account of the Revolution of the Year with this Church (lasts Lords day was the first of the New Year, but this was the first when I could be at home) and partly on account of the Communion, which was administered. P.M. on Mat. 6.15 and finished the Discourse on those words. O might it please God to render my weak Efforts beneficial! Deacon Bond and Mrs. Maynard dined here.
1773 November 22 (Monday). Mr. Elisha Forbes going to Boston, I wrote to my son Samuel and Sent him a small Token before Thanksgiving. Am very sollicitous about my Subject to preach on, upon the Ensuing Solemnity.
1773 November 23 (Tuesday). Engaged in my preparations. Town Meeting for Debts etc. but adjourned.
1773 November 24 (Wednesday). Much engaged — but one Robert Rose, an Hatter, here, interrupts me with his work.
1773 November 25 (Thursday). Public Thanksgiving. Preached on Eph. 5.4 fervently but too long. N.B. read also, and made use of v. 3. May God grant his Blessing and Success! Invited Mr. Benjamin Webb (who also came) to dine with us, and tarried till Evening. [Mr.?] Benjamin Rice (Mr. Ebenezer of Annapolis’ Son) and Sarah Green were marryed.
1773 November 26 (Friday). I visited Mr. Hannaniah Parkers wife, who had newly lain in, and was poorly. Prayed there and went also to see Mr. Thomas Frost. Breck went to Lancaster on Wednesday Eve, and returned to day. The Town met by adjournment. No Vote for getting my Wood. P.M. Mrs. [Keen?] makes a Visit here. Her Husband at Eve, and Mr. Gleason.
1773 November 27 (Saturday). A Number of Teams are joined to bring a great Stone to the Meeting House for a Step at the East End. [Lieut.?] Baker has given me one of the great Ladders which were used at the Meeting House, and it is brought hither accordingly. It is also laid on my House. I rode to Southborough (though it rained) to Change with Mr. Stone, but he had agreed with Mr. Smith of Marlborough to come here, though I knew it not. I lodged there. N.B. Lent Lt. Baker £13.6.3 for which he gives me his Note.
1773 November 28 (Sunday). Mr. Stone went Early to Marlborough. I preached at Southborough a. and p.m. on 2 Cor. 22.214.171.124.4. Blessed be God for all Assistances. May there be Success! At Eve I returned home, neither was I any way hurt. D.G. Found that Mr. Smith had preached here a. and p.m. on Heb. 11.14.
1773 November 29 (Monday). A Number of Men with Teams, and others, bring Stones and level the Ground and make what steps they can, at the East End of the Meeting House.
1773 November 30 (Tuesday). In my preparations for the next Sabbath. Mr. Lorings Diary.