February 3, 1779

1779 February 3 (Wednesday).  Rode to Shrewsbury (at Mr. Sumner’s Request).  Dined there. Mr. Fairbank preached the Lecture on 1 Joh. 4.16, latter part.  After sermon we had some Conversation about several passages delivered concerning God permitting Evil — and on the Fallen Spirits and Pharaoh, that they ought to bless God for their Existence.  I answered (among other things) our Lord’s saying of the Traytor, “it were good for that man if he had never been born.”  I returned home at Evening.

February 4, 1779

1779 February 4 (Thursday).  A SINGING LECTURE at the Request of the Singing School.  Mr. Sumner preached.  His text was Ps. 149.1.  It was conducted thus.  After Dinner (at which besides Mr. Sumner and Col. Job Cushing that came with him, was Mr. Stone of Southborough) when we first went into the Meeting House, An Anthem was sung.  Then Mr. Stone made a short Prayer.  After which I appointed and read Ps. 149, which was Sung without Reading the Lines by the Deacon.  Then Mr. Sumner prayed, after which we sung Ps. 113, Deacon reading as usual, and the Sermon next followed.  Mr. Sumner prayed again and we sung the 5th Hymn without reading, except my first reading over the whole.  In Conclusion of the Exercise, I pronounced the Blessing.  But then Mr. Badcock, the Master began an exercise of Singing — of Anthems and Tunes — which was very grateful, and may God graciously Condescend to accept the Sacrifice!  At eve a number of other Gentlemen here, viz. Dr. Crosby, Master Benj. Stone of Shrewsbury, Masters Brigham (Elijah and Moses) and Fisk.

February 8, 1779

1779 February 8 (Monday).  Bills of two Emissions, viz. of May 20, 1777 and of Apr. 11, 1778, are refused in common Trade.  I acquainted Squire Baker with this Difficulty with respect to some part of my Money, and some Considerable which I received of him.  He told me he would change such bills as I had of Those Emissions.  This day I went up to him, and his clerk changed 142 Dollars for me.  P.M. I wrote to Mrs. Moore.

February 12, 1779

1779 February 12 (Friday).  Mr. Thos. Warrin and Stephen Maynard cutt up part of the woodpile today to pay Mrs. Parkman for knitting for the latter of them.  They dined.  They work till evening.  Nathan Maynard junior gives me a note for 16 Dollars (lent him with much more) Dec. 21 last.  At Even I rec’d a Letter dated January 25, from my son Forbes, acquainting with the Death of one of Mr. Forbes’ Daughters, by a Fever, and the Distress Cape Ann is in by the Small Pox, that he, being desired by the Selectmen and the Doctors Plummer and Coffin to assist, has innoculated and administered physic to near 100: Col. Stevens and his Wife have got safely through.  But alas for the poor people, who want Bread, and Cloths and Fuel!  May God pity them and grant Supplys, especially of his Almighty Grace and Spirit: that they may duly improve providences, and the Seasons and means of Salvation!  A sad disappointment in the over rotted flax, which appeared by the breaking and swingling a part of it.  The young man (Phin Brigham) desists as working in vain, throws in his pains and leaves it.  A.M. Breck goes to Brookfield to look after his Bradshaw affairs.  Dr. Stimson was here from Marlborough and tells me old Mr. Thos. Biglo an old Friend (perhaps about 86) is dead,[1] And old Mr. Jonas Morse (about 84) is dead also, and to be buryed this day.  May God grant Me to be ready, in all respects so for the Time is hastening upon me.

[1]Thomas, son of Thomas and Mary, was born Apr. 26, 1706 (Marlborough VR, 30); married Elizabeth Nurse in 1730 (p. 224), who died Jan. 1, 1770 in her 63rd year (p. 345).  Lt. Thomas Biglo died Feb. 10, 1779, in his 74th year (p. 345).

February 14, 1779

1779 February 14 (Sunday).  Rain a.m.  A thin congregation.  Preached again on Mat. 22.39.  Master Fisk dined here.  P.M. go on with repeating (with incidental variations) on 2 Cor. 3.14 former part.  Used from Artic. 6th in continuation of page 8 to middle of page 11.  After our evening Exercise Mrs. read good part of the Touchstone of Saving Faith.  O that God would add His Blessing to these fervant and powerful means of Grace!

February 16, 1779

1779 February 16 (Tuesday).  Elias with Mr. Harrington about the Steers, and I compleated a Bargain with him: His steers are coming 3.  He asks 80£ for them.  I give him my large Steer and 35£, and paid him the Bills in Hand.  The steers are duly exchanged.  Elias p.m. makes a Business of trimming the great Apple trees in the Garden etc.  Mrs. Harrington, both, here.  Breck returns from Brookfield and New Braintree.  Gives me but a Sorrowful account of the Insolvency of the late Mr. Bradshaw, of the Afflicted state of my Daughter Baldwin, by reason of her Husband’s absence so long from his Farm and Business etc.  Also Ebenezer’s Affairs difficult.

February 19, 1779

1779 February 19 (Friday).  Capt. Morse came here and brought me an handsome Cheese which he says his Wife made on purpose for me.  N.B. This was unexpected as I had apprehended he had been under Disgust from Thanksgiving Time.  But I hope it is gone over.  Breck here and asks for Liberty to build a Smith’s shop at the Corner of my Land next the Burying Place.  At eve came Master Fisk to see us.  With Elias at Even to a Singing Meeting at Mr. Newton’s but lodges here.

February 23, 1779

1779 February 23 (Tuesday).  I go on reviewing and disposing Letters, Papers and Collections. Mr. Goodall, who preached at Southborough last Sabbath, came to me to ask Advice about his going to preach at Otter Creek.  N.B. I sent by him to Mr. Johnathan Loring his Book of the life of the renowned Piereskins. Breck and Elias p.m. go over to Upton to singing meeting there.

February 24, 1779

1779 February 24 (Wednesday).  I rode to Mr. Elijah Hardy’s to see their little Elijah, who had been very ill, but was much better.  To Mr. Joseph Grout’s to see his William who languished, but is recovering.  Proceeded to Mr. Grosvenor’s, but he was gone to Pomfret.  I dined there, with Mr. Farrar.  He went with me to see Mr. Joseph Brown, who was gone to Providence.  Viewed his Library, but not his Electrical Machine.  To this Mrs. Brown invited me and to bring Mrs. P________ when Mr. Brown may be at Home.  In returning from Grafton, had Capt’n Woods and his Wife’s Company from Dr. Jos. Woods, where we drank Tea.  In the evening came Moses Warren to let himself to me for six months, and asks an hundred pounds lawful money for that term.  I defer giving him an answer till next Monday.  My son Ebenezer came from Brookfield; in his way to Watertown, tells me Col. Baldwin is come home, and Alexander Oliver is dismissed, but is suffered to stay, his Wife’s Circumstances considered till April.  Ebenezer lodges here.

February 25, 1779

1779 February 25 (Thursday).  I walked to Mr. Thad. Warrin’s to hire him to get out Fencing stuff, posts and Rails; thence to Mr. Isaac Parker’s to see and talk with his brother Ephraim about living with me, and he seems disposed.  At eve, my son relates somewhat of his sorrowful case, and how his son in law had beguiled him to give a Warrantee Deed of his Place, without a proper Security, an unhappy step!