1776 March 1 (Friday). Exceeding Cold.
1776 March 2 (Saturday). Deacon Wood — advises to have the desired Contribution for Mr. Nichols. Joshua Twitchell came on Saturday Evening to request me to go to his sister Suse who was very bad of Throat Distemper. We sat out at 8 o’Clock; 3 mile and an half to ride — found her very ill — also her sister Sarah and others of their Family, their Parents especially, had been and continue affected with the same Distemper. I returned home at Eleven.
1776 March 3 (Sunday). Preached a.m. on Rom. 3.20. P.M. on consideration of the ensuing Fast I preached on Zech. 7.5, using, with New Introduction and various alterations, a sermon composed Oct. 17 in the year 1723. Appointed the Contribution to be after the Fast. And the Communion to be next Lords Day. May God prepare us all for those Solemnitys!
1776 March 4 (Monday). I visited Abel Woods, who was wounded by the Kings Forces 11 weeks agoe, and is still languishing under the sore. A little iron Ball of one pound went through him just below the Ossaerum, came out at his Groin, and dropped down within his Trowzers. Some small scaling of the Bone had come away — He has So much F[illegible]r that he is not out of Danger. Discoursed and prayed with him. P.M. Town Meeting. Mr. B. Tainter and Lt. Thomas [Barns?] came to me in the Name of the Town, desiring me to go to the Meeting House and Pray with them. Which I complyed with. N.B. Divers persons heard many Guns firing last night as if there were some Attempt from [illegible] upon Boston.
1776 March 5 (Tuesday). Wrote to my Son Ebenezer by Mr. William Bowman of Brookfield. He informs that Mr. Joseph Gilbert of Brookfield (tis Said he was commissioned to be a Lieutenant Colonel) lately dyed of a Fever.
1776 March 6 (Wednesday). There is much Talk of some great Action now undertaking, by our Forces, against Boston. May God give Wisdom and Direction!
1776 March 7 (Thursday). Public Fast. I preached a.m. on Rev. XIV.6.7. P.M. used 6 pages of Sermon on Jer. 12.3 and some Hints of Application in loose papers, and divers Extemporaneous Addresses. After the Blessing we made a Collection for Mr. Malachi Nichols of Munson, and gathered £22.214.171.124 lawful money for him: which was brought here by the Deacons, and I took it under my Care. May God graciously hear Our Prayers, bless the word delivered, and accept our Alms!
1776 March 8 (Friday). Reckoned with Samuel Williams and paid in full, viz. for Cutting 7 Cord of Wood at 6/ and for 2 Days work @ 10/ and for 1 Day in this Month at 11/ old Tenor.
1776 March 9 (Saturday). Mr. Whitney came to desire me to Change tomorrow, but this being out of my power, he asks the Same for next sabbath. To which I consent, D. V. N.B. Tainter is deficient as a Post — neither rides himself nor Sends any one for the Papers — so that we go without.
1776 March 10 (Sunday). Preached on 1 Cor. 5.8. Administered the Sacrament of the Supper. N.B. No wine to be got — the Deacons brought Metheglin. Suse Brigham dined here. P.M. on J [er?]. 7.3. May God be graciously pleased to accept our renewed Engagements and bless this word to us! At Even went to see Mrs. Piper, newly brought to bed, and is very low; prayed with her in her Distresses.
1776 March 11 (Monday). A.M. went to see Mrs. Piper again. She is in a dangerous state. P.M. read part of Willisons excellent Sacramental Directory. Which may a gracious God bless!
1776 March 12 (Tuesday). Capt. Wheelock early, Suddenly, hastily calls me to Visit Mrs. Piper as being near her End. I rode speedily (before Breakfast — nay before Family Prayer), found her groaning as in very great Distress. Prayed with her, Commending her Case to God, most gracious and compassionate. Read in Flavell on Fear. Deacon Batchellor of Grafton, brought home a Piece of Diaper which he has been weaving for us. The Measure is 35 Yards. For Weaving I payd him £7.0.0 old Tenor in full. Mrs. Piper dyed about noon, about 42 and an half.
1776 March 13 (Wednesday). A.M. visit Refugees from Charlestown, at Mr. Levi Warrins. They are, aged, paralytick Miss Stone, Mrs. [Mallet?] and Mrs. Scott with 3 Children. P.M. was at Squire Bakers first, and then to Mr. Pipers, Sympathizing with him under his Bereavement. Read part of Mr. Flavells excellent Discourse on Fear.
1776 March 14 (Thursday). Finished a Second Reading of Bishop Burnetts Conclusion of his History of his own time. Read further in Flavells Treatise on Fear. Little Samuel is ill with the Rash (as it is commonly called) and is very uneasy. I attended the Funeral of Mrs. Piper. N.B. her Father Whitcomb and one of her Brothers were there.
1776 March 15 (Friday). Spend a great part of my Time in Reading Chambers Cyclopedia on Mercury — Chymistry — Paper. Mr. Bowman of Oxford from the Camp. He says it seems as if the Regulars are moving off. It looks as if they were going to New York: And 5 Regiments of our own Forces are going that Way.
1776 March 16 (Saturday). Was to have (by appointment) changed with Mr. Whitney on the morrow; but the bad Roads and great Rains, caused me to write to him by Mr. Daniel Wood of Upton who was going by the Door, requesting that Mr. Whitney would defer our Changing till the next Sabbath.
1776 March 17 (Sunday). The Roads are full of Soldiers. Many are travelling to Day. My Son Baldwin came here this Morning — eats Breakfast, and presently leaves us. He is going to New York, as Engineer, and does not know (he says) but that he Shall go to Canada. He tells me the Regulars are Pillaging and destroying Boston; and preparing to go off. It was so fine a morning that (notwithstanding my Letter to Mr. Whitney) I sat out for Northborough; but found the Roads too muddy and hollow, and the attempt to travell, impracticable. I returned, and preached at Home — a.m. on Rev. 14.7, which I had newly prepared: and p.m. Sermon on 2 Chron. 20.20, with many Omissions and Alterations. May God bless my poor Essays!
1776 March 18 (Monday). Mr. Phin. Hardy came with a Message from his son Elijah’s Wife, who is in a low Condition of Body, but wants to See me on account of Some Troubles of a Spiritual Nature. I therefore went — discoursed with her, and upon her discovering her Difficulty to me, I (by divine Blessing) gave her Light and Instruction: prayed with her and din’d there. P.M. Visited at Mr. Twitchells, Mr. Sol. Millers, John Harr [ing?] tons, Lt. Harringtons, Mr. Elisha Forbes, where is Still old Mr. Woods. Was at Mr. Tainters to See several Persons who have come out of Boston, viz. one Sucker a poor Woman of about [blank] Years; and one Mr. Safford, his wife and Several Children. When I returned home in the Evening Every Mouth was open to relate to Me the News of the Day from Boston. Scil. that the Regulars evacuated the Town yesterday, and that at or about noon a Regiment of Provincial marched in.
1776 March 19 (Tuesday). My Son Samuel early this Morning Sat out for Boston. I impatiently wait for further Confirmation of the News from thence. P.M. Mr. Philips (from Grafton) brought a Letter from Breck, dated the 11th instant to his Brother Samuel informing that he had been to Philadelphia, and was hastening as he could, his Return home; though obliged to tarry a while till he could convey Goods he had purchased, to Norwich. Deacon Livermore of Northborough came in and would know of me (I understood him as bearing a Message from Mr. Whitney) whether I should attend the Lecture there tomorrow? I told him that by leave of Providence I would. At Eve Miss Eunice Fish and another young Lady (a Baldwin) were here. Agreed with Nathaniel Chamberlin to live with me six Months to do my Work on the Place for 11£ to begin the First of April next; but has Liberty to lodge at Mr. Moses Nurse’s, where his Wife and Children are: agreed that he must attend my Bus’ness in fowl weather as well as fair, and that he be here in the Evening if I want a small Chore to be done. N.B. Mr. Abraham Bond shews Resentment because I made Enquiries into the Report of his Drinking: upon which I admonished and warned him.
1776 March 20 (Wednesday). Notwithstanding the badness of the Roads I rode over (on Mr. Nurse’s Horse) to Northborough Lecture. Called at Mr. John Maynards and paid him (old Tenor) 5£ 5/ for making 4 pair of Shooes; and 25/ upon Account of what work he did for us heretofore. Dined at Mr. Whitneys, and preached on Rev. 14.6.7. In returning home I met Mr. Beeton, who came up from Boston and brought home my Son Samuels Mare with a Letter to Sally — informing that at the Regulars leaving the town (Boston) Lieut. Robinson who lodged at Mr. Shaws, has, like a Villain, carryed off 3-4ths of his Shop Goods. My Son is obliged to stay there to look after his Interest, at this extraordinary juncture. At night, about 9 o’Clock an extraordinary Light, as of a great Burning, appears in the East. We are full of Fears what it may be. But we hope in the Goodness of God.
1776 March 21 (Thursday). Companys of Soldiers are continually marching upwards — Supposed to be going to N. York. P.M. Dr. Ball here. I visited Abel Woods who is Still confined by his Wound at Mr. Tim. Warrins — instructed and prayed with him. He is in an hopeful way of Recovery. I drank Coffee at Dr. Hawes.
1776 March 22 (Friday). I visited a Young Soldier, named Jason Walker, of Brookfield, about 17 or 18 Years old, who is Sick at Mrs. Springs. Elias goes to Samuel Allens with 3 Legs for Bacon.
1776 March 23 (Saturday). Breck returned from his long Tour to Philadelphia. Samuel also returned from Boston p.m. and came most of the way on foot. He rectifies what is before said about the carrying off his Goods — not Lieut. Robinson, but two Jones’s, Sons of the late Col. Elisha, were known to do it.
1776 March 24 (Sunday). I prepared an Exercise on Faith justifying without Works, carrying on the Discourse on Rom. 3.28, but by reason of these remarkable Times, I preached a. and p.m. on Ps. 145.8 to page 17; the middle of it. May God bless it to us for our Saving Benefit! Suse Brigham dined with us. In our Evening Exercise, for the Family Good I read the 4th of Mr. Jos. Alleines Letters, being a Call to the Unconverted. Mrs. P________ has been out of Health for several Days; but especially has been full of Pain in the Nights. Suky [Moore?] is also from Day to Day much indisposed.
1776 March 25 (Monday). My Kinsmen Messrs. Samuel and Benjamin Hicks of Sutton call here in their way to Cambridge. Master Samuel Crosby dines here. Read in Chambers Cyclop. and Practice of Piety. Mrs. P________ is rheumatic and feverish. Sukey remains ill.
1776 March 26 (Tuesday). My Son Samuel goes to Boston again. Agreed further with Nat Chamberlin, that on Consideration of his going home on Saturday Nights and tarrying at home over the sabbath, and that his wife will wash and mend for him, I shall allow him 13/4 more than the 11£ which I before engaged to him for 6 Months — and that he must begin next Monday Morning. I visited Mrs. Amsden, [blot?] and prayed with her. I dined there (at Capt. Maynards). Went also to see old Mrs. Kelley. As I returned home, was at Mr. Ebenezer Maynards who was not there, but Jonathan and his wife inform me that their Father, they expected to bring home his new-marryed wife, this afternoon. Mr. Leonard returns to Woodstock, but did only call here, I not being at home, and he in Company.
1776 March 27 (Wednesday). Breck goes to Providence. Messrs. Samuel and Benjamin Hicks returning home, call and dine. They bring a Letter from my son Cushing, who informs that Mr. Clarke of Ashburnham does not incline to Send his Son Ben. Also that Mr. Lawrence of Ashby has taken up his Note, having paid the Remainder of his Debt: that he has Sent the Money by his Neighbour Davis, to his Brother of Waltham, for me.
1776 March 28 (Thursday). I visited Mr. Paul Biglow (after the Death of their Child), and Prayed (by Desire) with them. Went in also to See Mr. Daniel Adams’s Wife, who has been long confined with Sickness. P.M. solemnized the Marriage of Simon Forbes and Susan Miller. Wrote a Letter to Mr. Cushing about Ben. Clark. At Eve a letter from my Son Forbes, dated March 2, in which he laments that he had not had any Answer to his Sorrowful Account of the Death of his Wife: whereas I did Send by Elisha Forbes, Soon after. He now writes more particularly, of Some Things Especialy which were omitted before. Mr. Ebenezer Davis of Charlton lodged here. Received a mournful Letter from Mr. Forbes.
1776 March 29 (Friday). Mr. Davis dined here. Breck returned from Providence. P.M. Mr. Jos. Coollidge from Lancaster. At Eve came Mr. Thomas Adams. They both lodged here.
1776 March 30 (Saturday). I deliver Mr. Adams the Books I have borrowed of him, Except what I have bought of him, and except Johnsons Christian Plea. He takes away with him, of my Books, Dr. Twiss’s Vendicae Gratiae; and Shepherds Parables. For which he is to Send me Dr. Fullers Worthys, and Lord Landsdown; and I have his View of human Nature. Both Mr. Adams and Mr. Coollidge left us a.m. P.M. I wrote to Mr. Forbes.
1776 March 31 (Sunday). Though it was Stormy I undertook to ride to Northborough, agreeable to a Message sent to Mr. Whitney. Met him coming here; but he tells me Mr. Smith is at his House, and I must go to Marlborough; with which I complyed, though it was difficult to face the Storm, Snow, not a little (under Foot) and Rain in my Face. Meet Several Companys of Soldiers, marching upwards. I preached at Marlborough a. and p.m. on Jer. 11.3. May God bless the word to all of us, for our thorow Amendment and Reformation! At Eve it was so wet, and So difficult travelling, that I was obliged to tarry there. Neither did Mr. Smith return home. His Negro Woman Happy, has a strong Fitt. They needed, and had, my Help. And call in a Neighbour who was Strong to lift her, being very heavy. The Fitt came on again. She was lifted to the Bed, and lay composed, though she had not her Senses. Mr. Noah Rice a young Scholar (Son of Mr. Jabez), came in the Evening to see Me.