1775 May 1 (Monday). A most admirable spring Season. Thanks to God! [blot] Public Distress increases. The Inhabitants of Boston are getting out of it, but with great Difficulty. Mr. Loyd leaves his Wife and three Children here, and the Chaise they came in, and goes to try to get into Boston that he may get out his Goods and Effects. I wrote by him to Mr. Thomas Bailey (who has the Care of my Brother) recommending it to him to remove him to his Son Bradshaws at Stoughtonham. I gave Mr. Loyd 50/ to pay Edes and Gill for the News. Afterwards heard they had moved out of Boston.
1775 May 2 (Tuesday). Prec. and Jejun. From Day to Day fresh Accounts of the Troubles at Boston etc. One Asa Cheney, of the Provincials, a Soldier at Roxbury belonging to Medfield Company, was accidentally shot by the Gun of another last Friday, and dyed next Morning. Mrs. Spring goes with her Children, to live at home.
1775 May 3 (Wednesday). Rev. Mr. Gordon of Roxbury is here with us at Breakfast. Informs me that his Wife and her Maid are gone to Philadelphia: his Library is carryed to Mr. Welds of Attlebury. He comes from Worcester this Morning, and is returning to Roxbury. Connecticut and other soldiers are continually coming back from Cambridge and Roxbury. Some that have enlisted come home to prepare themselves to join the Army for Continuance in the Service.
1775 May 4 (Thursday). My Neighbour Spring returns home, but is to go to Cambridge again. Sophy rides to Northborough to improve Mr. Bass in getting a Letter to my son Samuel. Mr. Mellen here. He informs me that a News Paper is published at Worcester.
1775 May 5 (Friday). Ripley from Cambridge here. Certifies that my Daughter Forbes at Cape-Ann, recovers apace. He goes to Brookfield. I sent by him my subscription for Worcester News Paper.
1775 May 6 (Saturday). Mr. Spring returns to Cambridge. My son John came from Lancaster. Is an Invalid. Asa Ware came for his Note of Hand from me for 10£ lawfull money — [therefore?] being [blank] £ which I remain indebted to him — and [blank] £ for Breck for which he gives me Credit in my Account. Mr. Fitch calls here in his way to Shrewsbury.
1775 May 7 (Sunday). I preached on Heb. 12.2 and administered the Lords Supper. Capt. Brigham and Mr. Tainter were at Meeting but went out. Mr. Batheric not at meeting a.m. but came P.M. So did Mr. Daniel Forbes (he comes from Shrewsbury). Was at Meeting P.M. Mrs. Maynard dines here, as does Crosby (from College). P.M. I went on with the Repetition of Sermon on Gal. 1.3. May the Lord Himself Pity and Pardon us, and bless His holy Institutions to us!
1775 May 8 (Monday). Mr. Fitch returns from Shrewsbury; Mr. Sumner preached (as I conclude) for Mr. Mellen. Mr. Mellen went to Hopkinton. P.M. Came Mr. Eli Whitney to see me, and invite me to the raising of his Barn tomorrow; which considering the great Duty of preparing for the Fast, I Should have soon excused my self from attending upon it, but this Token of Respect from Him, at this time, is very engaging.
1775 May 9 (Tuesday). In the morning came my Son Baldwin from Mr. Gales Tavern, whither he came last night from Cambridge. N.B. I gave him 25/ old Tenor, to be delivered to Mr. Isaiah Thomas, Printer at Worcester, for his Spy. Moses Brigham is about to return to Dartmouth College; improve therefore the Opportunity by him, to write to Mr. Cushing of my Cousen Loyds Consent to the proposal made by my Daughter to take her Nabby, of 9 years old, to live with her. Mr. Isaac Pratt of Worcester and his Wife came in to see us and dined here. P.M. I rode to Mr. Nathaniel Whitneys, agreeable to his son’s invitation when they raised a Barn of 65 feet long; and without any Disaster; Blessed be God! Plentifull Entertainment after work, And in peace; no lisp of any Jarrs. May God be praised for this also!
1775 May 10 (Wednesday). Elias works with Aaron in the Planting, as he has been chiefly assisting him in the Business of the season, since he came from Brookfield. William Bradford, my Young Kinsman, came from Dr. Willsons of Hopkinton, having come from Boston last Saturday on Foot with Capt. John Tyler of Boston, and brought me a Letter from his Father, of their very distressed Condition — and that he, [blot] etc., intend, if possible, to go to Bristol. He brings also another Letter from my Son Samuel of the 6th, in which he says, “I can form no Idea of the Distress of the people of that Town, and the Amazing Difficulty of obtaining Permitts to get into the Country.” May God most gracious and Mercifull look upon their Afflictions, and grant His almighty Grace to prepare them for His holy Will!
1775 May 11 (Thursday). Publick Fast, recommended by the Congress, on Account of the present Distresses; and the Meeting of the General Congress at Philadelphia. In the morning Several Teams, that had carryed Goods to Grafton or further, were returning; one of the drivers was Mr. John Coburn of Brookline. I committ to him my son Samuels Letter, to be delivered to Breck at Cambridge least Breck has missed of the Letter, which Samuel depends upon his receiving. I met with too many Interruptions in my studys to be able to finish the Preparations I endeavoured to make for this peculiar and important Fast. I was desirous indeed to preach one part of the Day on 1 Pet. 5.6. But I found it necessary to preach on it, both parts of the Day. May God graciously accept the Humiliations, the Supplications and [Instructions?] and Pity and relieve His People. John droops: is too poorly to go to Meeting.
1775 May 12 (Friday). [No entry.]
1775 May 13 (Saturday). I rode down through our South East Corner to Hopkinton to Dr. Wilsons. Called at Capt. Clarks to See him. He has been confined to his Bed by reason of a Fall — in which his Hip bone was greatly injured. Mrs. Cotton also was not well. I dined there. Young Stimson took Capt. Clarks Horse and rode to one Mr. Alexanders to bring up William Bradfords Bundle, which was Supposed to be brought there from Charlestown with Goods of [Capt.?] John Tyler of Boston. But it was not there. Went to Mr. Fitch’s, and he to Westborough. Visit at Mr. Barretts where is Mr. Bowen, his wife and Child, who with Difficulty have escaped out of Boston. Lodged at Mr. Fitch’s.
1775 May 14 (Sunday). Preached at Hopkinton a. and P.M. on Judg. 18.104.22.168. I baptized Lawson, of Samuel and Hannah Haven. N.B. Mr. William Blair Townshend was there, having removed from Boston, to Cambridge first — and afterwards to Hopkinton. At Eve I returned home unhurt through divine Goodness, and may God forgive what was amiss and be pleased to bless my poor Labors! Mr. Fitch went home. He preached a.m. on Heb. 10.24, P.M. on Exod. 15.18. He Baptized Elisha, of Abijah and Susanna Gale, and Aaron of Joseph and Ruth Harrington. When I came home found my Daughter in Law, Sally, and her Son Samuel here. Also Edward Procter who waited on her. A Letter also from my son (Samuel) concerning his Troubles and Difficultys– what goods are got over to Charlestown, and a Team to bring them up; etc.
1775 May 15 (Monday). Young Procter returned to Charlestown, in the Chaise he came up in. Capt. Amariah Williams and Mr. Turner of Mansfield returning from the Army, dined here. Mr. James Godfry rides to Cambridge on Brecks Mare for him to ride home upon.
1775 May 16 (Tuesday). Mr. Joseph Wheeler of Harvard at Breakfast with us. He is on his Journey to Providence.
1775 May 17 (Wednesday). Breck came home this morn, from Cambridge. Arrived about 1/2 after two o’Clock. He relates another Disaster by the accidental going off of a Gun. A Stockbridge man was killed by a fellow soldier. I visited Miss Lois Burnap, who lies at Lt. Bakers, under the unhappiness of a Broken Bone. Mr. Bacon, late Pastor of the old South at Boston, was here and dined. He is riding to Connecticut. By Thomas’s Massachusetts Spy (which John returning from Oxford through Worcester, brings) we have an Account that Ticonderogo was lately taken out of the Hands of [the Regulars?], by Connecticut men.
1775 May 18 (Thursday). Elias goes part of the Way with Mr. B. Newton to drive Cattle to Leicester to Alexanders Pasture: one Cow, Two that are called two year olds, and three Yearlings. William Bradford, with a Letter to Alexander, concerning him, goes also.
1775 May 19 (Friday). There being no News of Billy Bradfords Bundle of Cloths etc. which was got out of Boston when he came out; and therefore I send Elias to Capt. Tyler and Mr. Alexander of Hopkinton to See whether they had received it — who Send Word that they had not. Elias borrowed of John Barrett, Davidsons Virgil Vol. 2. Elias returned at Eve.
1775 May 20 (Saturday). After long looking for Mr. Loyd, to day he came, and brought with him his Daughter Nabby (about 9 Years) and it makes my Family Somewhat numerous, to have the Loyd Addition (which are them Selves now Six) and John is still with us, drooping and almost unstrung. I am strictly employed in my preparations as these unhappy Times bespeak.
1775 May 21 (Sunday). Though I Spent much time on my Subject, and wrote a good many Pages, yet it was not So done as to be prepared to Preach it. I therefore took another Discourse, viz. on Ps. L, read a few of the first, a middle and final v. P.M. went on with the Same which (being the [illegible] for the Seasonableness thereof) I hope God will make profitable!
1775 May 22 (Monday). Town Meeting to choose a Member for the Provincial Congress: and to Choose a Committee of Correspondence. Mr. Loyd, his Wife, his Children (3 of them Billy, Sammy and Sally) left us to See whether they could journey upwards to Leicester.
1775 May 23 (Tuesday). I attended the Church-Meeting. See Church Records. N.B. Neither of the Papers which had been presented at the former meetings, but a new one of to Day, and never brought me before, but delivered me in the Time of the Meeting, containing 3 Articles — all which were exceptionable, but as the present Torrent of Liberty is irresistable, I was obliged to condescend, [and] for Peace Sake, and to avoid a Rupture among us, Should be acted upon. The First, was phrased so as I thought could do no harm, and therefore with Remark upon it, it was suffered to pass. The Second, I Shewed my Sense of, and how Churches and particularly Members ought to proceed — but it passed as the Framers of it pleased. The Third I shewed was against Platform and the Generality of the Writings of the Fathers of the Congregational way etc. and therefore I dissented — pleading the unreasonableness of binding Ministers to do what was not [only?] against their Consciences — that they may be assured I would not be obliged thereto. But it passed as they would have it. N.B. Brother Tainter made a motion to have the Votes recorded and read to the Church before they broke up — which Motion I opposed and Resented. Several of the Church vindicated me, and resisted the Motion as groundless and injurious: neither could Mr. Tainter make any Defence. The Meeting was dissolved. May God forgive what has been displeasing in His Sight! and Commend Peace to this dear Flock — through the Merits of Jesus Christ!
1775 May 24 (Wednesday). John undertakes to ride to Lancaster; Breck to Medford. I visited Joseph Grout, who is exceeding low — dined there. Called to see Miss Lois Burnap, confined by Lameness Still. While I was gone Alexander came here, and brought his little Brother in law, Ebenezer Brown, who goes home to Deacon Browns at Framingham under the Care of the Mr. Elisha Forbes.
1775 May 25 (Thursday). My Wife and Daughter in Law walked to Mr. Seth Morse’s. At Eve Breck came home: brought Billy Bradfords Bundle from Capt. Barnards of Watertown.
1775 May 26 (Friday). Mr. Putnam of Pomfret, in his way home, calls here. A very serious religious Man. Alme Deus, teus prefice ubique Gregi! Miss Kezia Adams came from Holliston and lodged here.
1775 May 27 (Saturday). Mrs. Allen of Shrewsbury and her son Lewis here. Miss Kezia Adams P.M. after Coffee returns to Holliston. I wrote by her to Mr. Thomas Adams for Bostons 4 fold state and Mason on self-Knowledge.
1775 May 28 (Sunday). Preached a. and P.M. on Rev. II.5. Before we entered the Meeting House P.M. we had news by two soldiers from Cambridge that there was yesterday P.M. and this morning, an Engagement of our people with the Regulars at Hog Island. Mrs. Spring and her Children lodge here.
1775 May 29 (Monday). Further Account of what Occurred at Hog Island and Noddles Island by our people from Chelsey, and Towns round about.
1775 May 30 (Tuesday). Sat out for Watertown, where the Provincial Congress is to sit. I had Jonathan Maynards Horse. Stopped at Mr. Stones and refreshed. Mr. Leonard of Woodstock and Several others overtook me. I dined at Mr. Mat. Bridges. Called at Mr. Woodwards — drank Coffee at Mr. Jacob Cushings. I was at Eve greatly perplexed for Lodging. Went to Capt. Tainters at Watertown where I was kindly welcomed and entertained.
1775 May 31 (Wednesday). Rev. Dr. Langdon preached before the Congress at Watertown, on Isa. 1.26. A large Collection of Ministers. Our Convention (as our Dining was also) at Coollidge’s Tavern on the South side of the Bridge. Dr. Langdon was chose Moderator. The Treasurer, Dr. Eliot, was not present: the Affairs of the Moneys, the Distribution of the Collections, and all the Accounts of the Funds, were deferred to another Time. The Congress having Shewn us great Respect, in providing for us, their President Dr. Joseph Warrin dining with us etc., the Convention chose a Committee to draw up an Address to them, and it was Sent by them. They were Dr. Cooper, Mr. [C?]hute, Williams of Sandwich, and Bridge of Chelmsford. Mr. Cooke was confirmed Preacher for the next Year. Dr. Langdon was chose his Second. The Convention Book of Accounts was delivered to Mr. Maccarty, to keep till Dr. Eliot (who is at present Shut up in Boston) may be able to receive it.
Old Mrs. Hunt, widow of the late Mr. Samuel Hunt, caused some body to ask me (as I was passing by) to be called in to her House, renewing old Friendship, with much endearing Regards. I again lodged at Capt. Tainter’s. The Times are more and more alarming. May God most gracious Prepare His People for His holy Will!