Paper book No. 17
Copied, Journal Fragments. Vol. 3.
continued on Sheet. 1-11.
[The preceding text was added in the handwriting of Charles Francis Adams]
Inside Front Cover
1771. FEBRUARY APRIL 16. TUESDAY EVENING.
Last Wednesday my Furniture was all removed to Braintree. Saturday, I carried up my Wife and youngest Child, and spent the Sabbath there, very agreably. On the 20th. or 25th. of April 1768, I removed into Boston. In the 3 Years I have spent in that Town, have received innumerable Civilities, from many of the Inhabitants, many Expressions of their good Will both of a public and private Nature. Of these I have the most pleasing and gratefull Remembrance. I wish all the Blessings of this Life and that which is to come, to the worthy People there, who deserve [illegible] from Mankind in general much better Treatment than they meet with. I wish to God it was in my Power to serve them, as much as it is in my Inclination. -- But it is not. -- My Wishes are impotent, my Endeavours fruitless and ineffectual, to them, and ruinous to myself. What are to be the Consequences of the Step I have taken Time only can discover. Whether they shall be prosperous or Adverse, my Design was good, and therefore I never shall repent it.
, I returned to Town and was at my Office before Nine, I find that I shall spend more Time in my Office than ever I did.
Now my family is away, I feel no Inclination at all, no Temptation to be any where
but at my Office. I am in it by 6 in the Morning -- I am in it, at 9 at night-and I spend but a small Space of Time in running down to my Brothers
to Breakfast, Dinner, and Tea.
Yesterday, I rode to Town from Braintree before 9, attended my Office till near two, then dined and went over the ferry to Cambridge, attended the House the whole Afternoon, returned, and spent the whole Evening in my Office, alone -- and I spent the Time much more profitably, as well as pleasantly, than I should have done at Clubb. This Evening is spending the same Way. In the Evening, I can be alone at my Office, and no where else. I never could in my family.
1771. FEB. [i.e. APRIL] I8. THURSDAY. FASTDAY.
Tuesday I staid at my Office in Town, Yesterday went up to Cambridge. Returned at Night to Boston, and to Braintree, still, calm, happy Braintree -- at 9. o Clock at night. This Morning, cast my Eyes out to see what my Workmen had done in my Absence, and rode with my Wife over to Weymouth. There we are to hear young Blake -- a pretty fellow.
SATURDAY [20 APRIL].
Fryday morning by 9 o Clock, arrived at my Office in Boston, and this Afternoon returned to Braintree. Arrived just at Tea time. Drank Tea with my Wife. Since this Hour a Week ago I have led a Life Active enough -- have been to Boston twice, to Cambridge twice, to Weymouth once, and attended my office, and the Court too. But I shall be no more perplexed, in this Manner. I shall have no journeys to make to Cambridge -- no general Court to attend -- But shall divide my Time between Boston and Braintree, between Law And Husbandry. Farewell Politicks. Every Evening I have been in Town, has been spent till after 9. at my Office. Last Evening I read thro, a Letter from Robt. Morris Barrister at Law and late Secretary to the Bill of Supporters of the Bill of Rights, to Sir Richd. Aston, a Judge of the K's [King] Bench. A bold, free, open, elegant Letter it is. Annihilation would be the certain Consequence of such a Letter here, where the Domination of our miniature infinitessimal Deities, far exceeds any Thing in England.
This mettlesome Barrister gives us the best Account of the Unanimity of the Kings Bench
that I have ever heard or read. According to him, it is not uncommon abilities, [illegible]
Integrity and Temper as Mr. Burrows would perswade
us, but sheer fear of Lord M-d [Mansfield]
, the Scottish Chief which produces
this Miracle in the moral and intellectual World -- i.e. of 4 Judges, agreeing perfectly in every Rule, order and judgment for 74 Years together. 4 Men never agreed so perfectly in Sentiment, for so long a Time, before. 4 Clocks never struck together, a thousandth Part of the Time, 4 Minds never thought, reasoned, and judged alike, before for a ten thousandth Part.
SUNDAY [21 APRIL].
Last night went up to Braintree, and this Evening down to Boston, call'd at S. Adams's and found Mr. Otis, Coll. [Colonel] Warren and Dr. Warren. Otis as Steady and Social, and sober as ever and more so.
MONDAY [22 APRIL].
In the Morning mounted for Worcester, with Pierpoint, Caleb and Rob. Davis, Josa. Quincy, &c. Baited the Horses at Brewers, and at Coll. [Colonel] Buckminsters.
THURDSDAY. APRIL 25TH. 1771.
Dined last Monday at Brighams in Southborough, and lodged at Furnasses in Shrewsbury. Next day dined at Mr. Putnams in Worcester, and at the same Place, dined on Wednesday. This day dined at Mr. Paines -- with much Company. At about 2 O Clock this day We finished the famous Cause of Cutler vs. Pierpont and Davis -- an Action of Trespass for compelling the Plaintiff to store his Goods with the Committee at Boston and carting him &c.
We had Stories about Fort George, the Duke of York, and a warm [illegible] Gentleman at Cambridge, Bob. Temple.
The D. of York was in a Battle at Sea, a cannon Ball hit a
Mans Head and dashed his Blood and Brains in the Dukes Face and Eyes. The Duke started, and leaped quite out of the Rank. The Officer, who commanded, said, pray your Highness dont be frightened. -- The Duke replyed Oh Sir, I am not frightened but I wonder what Business that fellow had here with so much Brains in his Head.
The warm Gentleman at Cambridge was Bob. Temple. A Number of Gentlemen at Cambridge his Friends got into a Quarrell and Squabble and somebody knowing they all had a great Esteem of Temple begged him to interpose and use his Influence to make Peace. At last he was perswaded, and went in among the Persons, and one of the first Steps he took to make Peace was to give one of the Persons a Blow in the Face with his fist.
Strong insinuated privately at the Bar, another Story. He said the Defence put him in Mind of the Answer of a Young fellow to the Father of a Girl. The Father caught the young Fellow in naked Bed with his Daughter. The old Man between Grief and Rage broke out into Reproaches. -- You Wretch, what do [you] mean by trying to get my Daughter with Child? The Young fellow answered him, I try to get your Daughter with Child! I was trying not to get her with Child.
Thus, the Defendants are to be laughed and storied out of large Damages no doubt.
However the jury gave none. They could not Agree. 8 were for Defendants, 4 for Plaintiff.
MAY 1ST. 1771. WEDNESDAY.
Saturday I rode from Martins in Northborough to Boston on horse back, and from thence to Braintree in a Chaise, and when I arrived at my little Retreat, I was quite overcome with Fatigue. Next Morning felt better, and arose early and walked, up Pens Hill and then round, by the Meadow, home.
After Meeting in the Afternoon Mr. Tudor and I rambled up the western Common, and took a View of a Place which I have never seen since my Removal to Boston. [illegible] I felt a joy, I enjoyed a Pleasure, in revisiting my old Haunts, and recollecting my old Meditations among the Rocks and Trees, which was very intense indeed. The rushing Torrent, the purling Stream, the gurgling Rivulet, the dark Thickett, the rugged Ledges and Precipices, are all old Acquaintances of mine. The Young Trees, Walnutts and Oaks which were pruned, and trimmed by me, are grown remarkably. Nay the Pines have grown the better for lopping.
This Evening at the Bar Meeting, I asked and obtained the unanimous Consent of the Bar to take Mr. Elisha Thayer of Braintree Son of Captn. Ebenr. Thayer
Jur. as a Clerk. How few Years are gone since this Gentleman was pleased to call me a petty Lawyer
at Majr. Crosbys
Court. Now [he]
is soliciting me to take his Son, and complementing &c.
May 2. 1771
me, with being the first Lawyer in the Province, as he did, in express Words, tho
it was but a Compliment, and if sincere in him was not true, but a gross Mistake, nay what is more remarkable still complimenting me with his Seat in the House of Representatives, as he did by assuring me in Words, that if I had an Inclination to come from Braintree, he would not stand in my Way. -- Such are the Mistakes we are apt to make in the Characters of Men, and in our Conjectures of their future Fortune. This however is a wretched Tryumph
, a poor Victory, a small Antagonist to defeat -- And I have very few of this Kind of Conquests to boast of. The Governor tells of a vast No.
of these Changes in Sentiment concerning him -- and will be able to tell of many more.
MAY 2. 1771.
The Tryumphs, and Exultations of Ezekl. Goldthwait and his pert Pupil Price, at the Election of a Register of Deeds, are excessive. They Crow like dunghill Cocks. They are rude and disgusting. Goldthwait says he would try the Chance again for 20 dollars, and he would get it by a Majority of 100 Votes even in this Town. Nay more he says, if he would be Rep [ Representative] and would set up he would be chose Rep. before Adams. -- Adams the Lawyer dont succeed in the Interest he makes for People, he is not successful!. -- N.B. very true!
Price says to me, if you was to go and make Interest, for me to be Clerk in the Room of Cook, I should get it no doubt.
These are the Insults that I have exposed myself to, by a very small and feeble Exertion for S. Adams to be Register of Deeds. Thus are the Friends of the People after such dangerous Efforts, and such successful ones too left in the Lurch even by the People themselves. I have acted my sentiments, with the Utmost Frankness, at Hazard of all, and the certain Loss of ten times more than it is in the Power of the People to give me, for the sake of the People, and now I reap nothing but Insult, Ridicule and Contempt for it, even from many of the People themselves. However, I have not hitherto regarded Consequences to myself. I have very chearfully sacrificed my Interest, and my Health and Ease and Pleasure in the service of the People. I have stood by their friends longer than they would stand by them. I have stood by the People much longer than they would stand by themselves. But, I have learn'd Wisdom by Experience. I shall certainly become more retired, and cautious. I shall certainly mind my own Farm, and my own Office.
MAY 3D. 1771. FRYDAY.
Last Evening I went in to take a Pipe with Brother Cranch, and there I found Zeb. Adams. He told me, he heard that I had made two very powerfull Enemies in this Town, and lost two very valuable Clients, Treasurer Gray and Ezek. Goldthwait, and that he heard that Gray had been to me for my Account and paid it off, and determined to have nothing more to do with me. Oh the wretched [illegible] impotent Malice! They shew their teeth, they are eager to bite, but they have not Strength! I despize their Anger, their Resentment, and their Threats. But, I can tell Mr. Treasurer, that I have it in my Power to tell the World a Tale, which will infallibly unhorse him -- whether I am in the House or out. If this Province knew that the public Money had never been counted this twenty Year -- and that no Bonds were given last Year, nor for several Years before, there would be so much Uneasiness about it, that Mr. Gray would loose his Election another Year.
It may be said that I have made Enemies by being in the general Court. The Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Gray, Goldthwait, The Gentry at Cambridge, &c. are made my bitter Foes. But there is nothing in this. These People were all my Foes before, but they [illegible] thought it for their Interest to disguise it. But Now they think themselves at Liberty to speak it out. But there is not one of them but would have done me all the Harm in his Power secretly before.
This Evening Mr. Otis came into my Office, and sat with me most of the Evening -- more calm, more solid, decent and cautious than he ever was, even before his late Disorders. -- I have this Week had an Opportunity of returning an Obligation, of repaying an old Debt to that Gentleman which has given me great Pleasure. Mr. Otis was one of the 3 Gentlemen, Mr. Gridley and Mr. Thatcher were the other two, who introduced me to Practice in this County. I have this Week strongly recommended 14 Clients from Wrentham and 3 or 4 in Boston, to him, and they have accordingly by my Perswasion engaged him in their Causes, and he has come out to Court And behaved very well, so that I have now introduced him to Practice. This Indulgence to my own gratefull Feelings, was equally my Duty and my Pleasure.
He is a singular Man. It will be amusing to observe his Behaviour, upon his Return to active Life in the Senate, and at the Bar, and the Influence of his Presence upon the public Councils of this Province. I was an Hour with him this Morning at his Office, and there he was off his Guard and Reserve with me. I find his Sentiments are not altered, and his Passions are not eradicated. The fervour of his Spirit is not abated, nor the Irritability of his Nerves lessened.
MAY 9. 1771.
From Saturday to Wednesday Morning I staid at Braintree, and rode, walked, rambled and roamed. Enjoyed a Serenity and Satisfaction to which I have been 3 Years a Stranger.
Yet I have had upon my Mind, a puzzling perplexing affair. The Purchase of Elijah Belchers Homestead and two Pastures, has occasioned a journey to Germantown, where I had not been for three Years, and which Mr. Palmer has made a little Paradise, to [illegible] treat with Mrs. Palmer about Terms and Conditions, and many Walks about the Land, to see the Condition of the Fences &c. The Fences are in a ruinous Condition and require a large Expence for Repairs.
Wednesday, after Court I waited on Dr. Gardiner
, Secretary Fluker [Flucker]
, Mr. Josa. Quincy Jur.
and John Erving Jur. Esqr.
, and was very politely treated by each of those Gentlemen, each of them very readily agreeing, to take my single Note for the Money, and two of em Fluker
giving me Assignments of their Mortgages, in Exchange for my Note. A droll Adventure with Mr. Erving
. He took my Note and gave me up Elijah Belchers for upwards of 56 Prin [Principle]
and Int [Interest]
and seemed mightily pleased. In the Evening, upon
seeing Mr. Greenleaf
, I discovered that Deacon Palmer
had never any Thing to do with this Debt, and that it was not in the List which I was to discharge. So that I had given my Note, without Authority, and to my own Prejudice. But, waiting the next Morning on Mr. Erving
, and explaining the Facts to him, he very genteelly gave up my Note and took back that of Belcher
This Day arrived Hall from London with News of the Committment of the Mayor and Mr. Alderman Oliver to the Tower, by the House of Commons. I read this Morning in the English Papers and the Political Register for April, all the Proceedings against the Printers Thompson and Wheble, and vs. the Mayor and Alderman Wilks, and Oliver. What the Consequence will be, of these Movements, it is not easy to foresee or Conjecture. A Struggle, a Battle, so serious and determined, between two such Bodies as the House and the City, must produce Confusion and Carnage, without the most delicate Management, on both sides, or the most uncommon Concurrence of Accidents.
TUESDAY. MAY. 14 1771.
Yesterday came to Town with my Wife. A fine Rain all night. Captn. Bradford sent his Compliments, and desired me to meet the Clubb at his House this Evening which I did -- Dr. Cooper, Mr. Lathrop, Otis, Adams, Dr. Greenleaf, Wm. Greenleaf, Dr. Warren, Thom. Brattle, Wm. Cooper, C. Bradford. A very pleasant Evening. Otis gave us an Account of a present from Dr. Cummings of Concord to H [Harvard] Colledge Chappell of a brass Branch of Candlesticks, such as I. Royal Esqr. gave to the Representatives Room, and that it was sent to N. Hurds to have an Inscription engraven on it. The Inscription is
In Sacelli hujusce ornatum et splendorem
phosphoron hoc Munus, benigne contulit
Cummings Armiger, Medicus concordiensis.
Danforth. The Inscription was much faulted, by the Witts at Clubb -- and as it was to be a durable Thing for the Criticisms of Strangers and of Posterity, it was thought that it ought to be altered.
mentioned an old Proverb that an Ounce of Mother Wit, is worth a Pound of Clergy. Mr. Otis
mentioned another which he said conveyed the same Sentiment -- an Ounce of Prudence is worth a Pound of Wit. [illegible]
This produced a Dispute, and the sense of the Company was that the Word Wit in the 2d.
Proverb, meant, the faculty of suddenly raising pleasant Pictures in the Fancy, but that the Phrase
Mother Wit in the first Proverb meant, natural Parts, and Clergy acquired Learning -- Book Learning. Dr. Cooper
quoted another Proverb, from his Negro Glasgow -- a Mouse can build an House without Timble -- and then told us another Instance of Glasgows Intellect, of which I had before thought him entirely destitute. The Dr.
was speaking to Glasgow about Adams Fall and the Introduction of natural and moral Evil into the World, and Glasgow said they had in his Country a different Account of this matter. The Tradition was that a Dog and a Toad were to run a Race, and if the Dog reached the Goal first, the World was to continue innocent and happy, but if the Toad should outstrip the Dog, the world was to become sinfull and miserable. Every Body
thought there could be no danger. But in the Midst of the Career the Dog found a bone by the Way and stopped to knaw it, and while he was interrupted by his Bone, the Toad, constant in his Malevolence, hopped on, [illegible]
reached the Mark, and spoiled the World
WEDNESDAY MAY 15TH. 1771.
Argued before the Sessions the Question whether the Court had Authority by Law to make an Allowance of Wages and Expences, above the Fees established by Law to the jurors, who tryed C [Captain] Preston and the Soldiers. The two Quincys, Otis and Adams, argued. Otis is the same Man he used to be
He spares nor Friend nor Foe, but calls to Mind
like Doomsday, all the faults of all Mankind.
He will certainly soon relapse into his former Condition. He trembles. His Nerves are irritable. He cannot bear Fatigue. -- "Brother A. has argued so prodigiously like a Rep [Representative] that I cant help considering him as the Ghost of one" -- &c .
WEDNESDAY. MAY 22. 1771.
At Plymouth. Put up at Wetheralls, near the County House -- lodged with Mr. Angier, where we had a Chamber wholly to ourselves -- very still and retired -- very serene and happy. Mrs. Howland and her Family, I hear are very much grieved, and hurt, and concerned about my passing by their House. But my Health is my Excuse of all my Removals. I am not strong enough to bear the Smoke and dirt, and Noise, of Howlands, and their late Hours at night. -- Heard of the Election of Coll. Edson at Bridgwater, and Coll. Gilbert of Freetown. Which proves to me, that the System of the Province will be different, this Year, from what it was the last. The House was very near equally divided, the whole of the last Session, and these two Members will be able to make a ballance in favour of Timidity, Cunning, Artifice, and Trimming. How easily the People change, and give up their Friends and their Interest.
1771. WEDNESDAY 29. MAY.
General Election. Went to Boston and to Cambridge, and returned to Boston at night.
1771. THURDSDAY MAY 30.
Mounted my Horse for Connecticutt. Stopped, and chatted an Hour with Tom Crafts who is very low with Rheumatism and an Hectic, but the same honest, good humoured Man as ever. Stopped again at little Cambridge at the House by the Meeting House, and gave my Horse Hay and Oats, at Mr. Jacksons. Rode alone. My Mind has been running, chiefly upon my Farm and its Inhabitants and Furniture, my Horses, Oxen, Cows, Swine, Walls, Fences &c. I have in several late Rambles very particularly traced, and pursued every [illegible] Swamp and Spring upon the North Side of Penns Hill from its Sourse to its Outlet. And I think if I owned the whole of that Side of the Hill I could make great Improvements upon it, by Means of Springs, and Descents and falls of Water.
The first is the Swamp in the Pasture, by John Curtis, which my father gave me, which Swamp is fed by Springs which come from Land that was Curtis's. This Swamp discharges its Waters two Ways. The first is by a range of low, wet, rocky ground, which runs down directly
to Plymouth Road, near S. Curtis's Lane, and the Bars of my new Pasture, and therefore flows down Pens hill in Wash. The other turns round and runs down into a Meadow in the lower Part of the Pasture, I purchased of Curtis, and from thence flows thro
a range of low Land of S. Curtis into Bridgwater Road, and so in great freshitts, and plentifull
Rains, flows down across the Road into my Pasture, and Coll.
Verchilds, and mine again and Jo. Fields
, into the fresh Meadow and Brook.
In the next Place there is a Spring, a living Spring never dry, which originates in my new Pasture opposite S. Curtis's lane. It arises directly beneath a great Rock, and flows in a Rivulet, down, thro S. Pennimans Land, and the narrow Lane, and Nat. Belchers and into my Meadow, which was Deacon Belchers, and then into Deacon Belchers Pond and thence thro Mrs. Vesey, Bass, Gay, Ruggles, Winslow, Peter Adams across the Road, [illegible] and over Peter Adamss Meadow and into the Brook by Major Millers Bridge.
Now the Questions are, what Improvement could I make of these Courses of Water, if I owned the whole North Side of the Hill? And what Improvements can I make with what I own already.
I can clear my Swamp, and cutt a Ditch through it and extend that Ditch down to my Pasture Barrs, along the low, rocky, Spungy Valley there.
Then I can cutt another Ditch, down to the lower Part of my Pasture, and another Ditch thro the Meadow there, and if there was a Ditch to communicate with it, thro S. Curtis's Land, down to the [illegible] long slough in the Road on one side of the Causey opposite to my Pasture, a Gutter might be opened directly into my Pasture, or it might be carried round by a Channell in the Road along side of the Causy, by my Pasture and Verchilds, and all turned directly into my four Acres, and Orchard -- and carried all round the Walls of that and shed upon the Land as I pleas'd. And as to the other Spring and Rivulet, I might make a Dam just within my Meadow and turn half the Water, by a Channel, round by Nat. Belchers Wall and by my Wall against the Street and round by the House, and thence down into the Pond, and the other half, round the Side of the bushy Pasture Hill, so as to oose over several Acres there before it fell down into the Pond.
Rode along to Captn.
Brewers in Waltham, and turned my Horse out to Pasture, about 11 . O. Clock perhaps, so that I have spent the forenoon in getting about 9 Miles. I rode this forenoon from little Cambridge to Brewers, with Mr. Ruggles of Roxbury, the Butcher, and
I find him my Relation. -- His Mother, who is still living above 70, is Sister to my Grandmother
, Aunt Fairfield, Aunt Sharp, and Aunt Ruggles of Rochester, and Parson Ruggles of Rochester, and the Butchers Father were Brothers, so that Tim and he are very near both by fathers and Mothers side. We talked about Family, Cattle fat and lean, and Farms, and Improvement of Land &c. He says that Roxbury People make no Profit, by carting Dung out of Boston, it must be done every Year, and they must put on 10 Load to an Acre, which will cost them 12 or 15 in Boston besides the Labour
of Carting, and when all this is done, they may get 30 Hundred of Hay -- besides after feed. Roxbury People dont dung their Grass Land so much as they used to do -- for of late Years they have got
more into gardening, and 4 or 5 Acres of Garden takes all the dung they can get. Dr. Davis
, he says, dungs his Close vs.
Warrens, but little. The Wash helps it, and he dont feed it till quite Winter.
Dined at Brewers, and spent good Part of the Afternoon there. A vast Drove of fat Cattle went by while I was there from the River Towns. Rode from Brewers to Munns in Sudbury, where I drank Tea and put out my Horse to Pasture, and put up myself for the Night.
Spent the Evening at Munns, in Conversation with him about the Husbandry of the River Towns, Hatfield, Deerfield, Springfield, Northampton
and Hadley, &c. and about Captn.
Carvers journal of his Travells
in the Wilderness, among the Savages in search of the South sea
The Farmers upon Connecticutt River, fat their Cattle on the very best of English Hay, and Oats and Pees, ground to meal. They would not digest the Corn whole, so they grind their Provender. One of the great Farmers, will fatten 20 Head of Cattle in a Year, and it is the whole Business of one Man to take the care of em -- to feed, Water, and curry them. They give an Ox but little Provender at first, but increase the Quantity till an Ox will eat a Peck at a Time, twice a day. [illegible] The County of Hampshire is the best Place to send to for Stock -- Oxen, Cows, Horses, young Cattle of all Ages, their Breed is large and excellent and store Cattle are much cheaper there than below. -- Lodged at Muns.
1771. MAY 31. FRYDAY.
A fair, soft, pleasant Morning. -- I believe the Peasants round about the Town of Boston are as contracted, in their Views and Notions, as any People in the Province. On the North Side of Charlestown Ferry, their Lands are divided into little Strips and they spend the whole Year in providing for a few Cows and in carrying their Milk in Bottles over the ferry and Wheeling it about the Town of Boston. On the South Side of the Neck, they raise Garden Stuff and Hay, for the Market. But they have less Conversation with Travellers And
Strangers, and therefore less Civility, Knowledge &c. [illegible] than
Countrymen at a greater Distance. -- Turned out my Horse at Coll.
Williams's Marlborough. Dined at Martins, Northborough, where I met with my Class Mate Wheeler
of George Town the Episcopal Priest. He says the Deer in St. James's Park are as tame as Catts
, they will come up to you and eat any Thing
out of your Hands. There is a large Number of them in the Park, and it is a rare Thing to have one of them stolen or kill'd
. It is transportation to do Either. So there is a Number of Swans upon the Thames, none of em get killed, nor any of their Eggs destroyed. Mr. Wheeler informed me, that Coll.
Lithgow of George Town, had a Son which he designed to get me to take. He is 20 Years of Age, has studied Latin with Mr. Wheeler, but has never been at Colledge
, &c. He gives a pitifull Account of our Classmate, his Brother Bayley [Bailey]
, and his Wife, their want of CEconomy, and their wretched jig, &c. -- Oated, and drank Tea at Furnaces, lodged at Mr. Putnams
1771. SATURDAY JUNE 1st.
Spent the Day at Worcester in Riding about with Mr. Putnam to see his Farm. He does what he pleases with Meadows and Rivers of Water. He carries round [illegible] the Streams wherever he pleases.
Took one Ride up to Baggachoag Hill, one Way, and another up the Lane by Doolittles shop, and I found that great Alterations have been made, and many Improvements, in 13 Years, for it is so long since I was in Either of those Parts of the Town of Worcester before. In the latter Road, I missed many objects of my former Acquaintance, many shady Thicketts and gloomy Grottos, where I have sat by the Hour together to ruminate and listen to the falls of Water.
This Pleasure of revisiting an old Haunt is very great. Mr. Putnam says he was lately at Danvers, and visited the very Path where he used to drive the Cows to Pasture when he was 7 Years old. It gave him a strange Feeling. It made him feel young, 7 Year old.
I visited [illegible] Dr. Willard, I see little Alteration in him or his Wife in 16 Years, his Sons are grown Up. Sam, the eldest who has been to Colledge is settled at Uxbridge in the Practice of Physick, Levi is at home.
I met Coll. Gardiner Chandler. He said he heard I was in Quest of Health -- if I found more than I wanted he begged a little -- no poor Creature ever suffered more for Want of it. Thus he is the same Man. 16 Years, I have been a Witness to his continual Complaints of Weakness, and Want of Health.
This Day, Mr. Putnams eldest Daughter Eleanor, brought to the World her first Daughter, being married to Rufus Chandler, Son of Coll. John.
1771. SUNDAY JUNE 2D.
Heard Mr. Wheeler, late Minister of Harvard, at Worcester all day.
Here I saw many Faces much altered and many others not at all, since I first knew this Place which is now 16 Years. Here I saw many young Gentlemen, who were my Scholars and Pupils, when I kept School, here -- Jno. Chandler Esq. of Petersham, Rufus Chandler, the Lawyer, Dr. Wm. Paine, who now studies Physick with Dr. Holyoke of Salem, Nat. Chandler, who studies Law with Mr. Putnam, and Dr. Thad. Maccarty, who is now in the Practice of Physick at Dudley. Most of these began to learn Latin with me.
Mem [Memorandum]. Gard. Chandler Yesterday said, that many Regulations were wanting, but the Town of Boston more than any Thing -- and that after Election every Body used to be enquiring, who was chosen Councillors, very anxious and inquisitive to know. But now no Body asked any Thing about it. And Putnam said Yesterday He did not like the Town of Boston, He did not like their Manners -- &c. I record these curious Speeches, because they are Characteristick of Persons, and of the Age.
Drank Tea at Mr. Putnams with Mr. Paine, Mrs. Paine, Dr. Holyokes Lady and Dr. Billy Paine. The Dr. is a very civil, agreable and sensible young Gentleman.
Went in the Evening over to G. Chandlers and chatted with him an Hour. He is very bitter vs. the Town of Boston. I hate 'em from my Soul says he. -- Great Patriots -- were for Non Importation, while their old Rags lasted, and as soon as they were sold at enormous Prices, they were for importing -- no more to be heard about Manufactures -- and now, there is a greater Flood of Goods than ever were known -- and as to Tea, those who were most strenuous against it are the only Persons who have any to sell.
Jno. Chandler Esqr. of Petersham came into P.s in the Evening from Boston Yesterday, and gave us an Account of Mr. Otis's Conversion to Toryism. -- Adams was going on, in the old Road, and Otis started up and said they had gone far enough in that Way, the Governor had an undoubted Right to carry the Court where he pleased, and moved for a Committee to represent the Inconveniences of sitting there, and moved for an Address to the Governor. He was a good Man -- the Ministers said so -- the justices said so and it must be so -- and moved to go on with Business, and the House voted every Thing he moved for. -- Boston People say he is distracted. &c.
1771. MONDAY JUNE 3D.
A fine Morning -- a soft, sweet S.W. Wind. Oated in Spencer -- turned my Horse to grass at Wolcotts in Brookfield. I ride alone, I find no Amusement, no Conversation, and have nothing to think about. But my Office and Farm frequently steal into my Mind, and seem to demand my Return. They must both suffer for Want of my Presence.
The Road to Stafford turns off, by Brookfield Meeting House, into Brimfield in the County of Hampshire.
Dined at Cheneys of Western in the County of Hampshire. An old Man came in, and after some Conversation with the old Landlady, she asked him, if he was not the Man who called here about 17 Years ago and was intrusted with a Jill of W. India Rum? He said Yes. Hant you had your Money? -- No. -- Well I sent it by a Brimfield Man, within a fortnight after. I'le at him about it. I'm desperate glad you mentioned it. I had the Rum. I was driving down a drove of Hogs. My two Boys were with me, I lost em both in the Year 1759, one at Crownpoint and one about 10 mile from Albany. They drinked the Rum with me. I'm glad you mentioned it -- the Money is justly your due. I'le pay you nowhow much is it. -- 2s: 4d. -- But says I, interposing for Curiosity, that will hardly do justice for the Interest is as much as the Principall.
The whole Debt is 4s: 8d. -- I'm a poor Man says he. Landlady wont ask me Interest. -- I was much amused with the old Womans quick and tenacious Memory, and with the old Mans Honesty. But it seems to be, that the whole Anecdote shews
that these are but two Penny People.
This honest Man whose Name is Frost, hearing that I was bound to the Spring, and unacquainted with the Way, very obligingly waited for me, to shew me the Way as far as he went which was several Miles. His father came from Billerica, to Springfield. Mrs. Cheney says her Husband came from Roxbury. I found that Frost was a great Partisan of the mineral Spring. He said, He had been weakly this 30 Year, and the Spring had done him more good in a few days, than all the Drs. had done, in 30 Year-and he went on and told of a great Number of marvellous Instances of Cures wrought there by Washing and drinking while he was there.
Oated at Silas Hodges's in Brimfield, near the baptist Meeting House. There I find they have not so much faith in the Spring. Lodged at Colburns the first House in Stafford. There I found one David Orcutt, who came from Bridgwater 30 Years ago, a Relation of the Orcutts in Weymouth. He I find is also a great Advocate for the Spring. He was miserable many Years with Rheumatism &c., and by means of the Spring was now a comfortable Man. The Landlord came with
Father 30 Years ago from Roxbury. He has a farm of Zoo Acres of Land, 100 under Improvement, keeps near 30 Head of neat Cattle, 3 Horses, 50 sheep, and yet offers to sell me his Place for 500 L.M.
1771. TUESDAY. JUNE 4TH.
Rode over to the Spring. One Childs had built a little House, within a few Yards of the Spring, and there some of the lame and infirm People keep. The Spring arises at the Foot of a Steep high Hill, between a Cluster of Rocks very near the Side of a River. The Water is very clear, limpid and transparent, the Rocks And Stones and Earth at the Bottom are tinged with a reddish yellow Colour
, and so is the little Wooden Gutter that is placed at the Mouth of the Spring to carry the Water off-indeed the Water communicates that Colour
, which resembles that of the Rust of Iron, to whatever Object it washes. Mrs. Child furnished me with a Glass Mugg, broken to Pieces and painted together again, and with that I drank pretty plentifully of the Water. It has the Taste of fair Water with an Infusion of some Preparation of steel in it, which I have taken, heretofore -- Sal Martis
, somewhat like Copperas. They have built [illegible]
a shed over a little Reservoir made of Wood, about 3 feet deep and
and into that have conveyed the Water from the Spring, and there People bath, Wash
and plunge, for which Childs has 8d. a time. I plunged in twice -- but the 2d
time was superfluous and did me more hurt than good, it is very cold indeed.
Mrs. Child directed me to one Greens about half a Mile from the Spring, as a Place to lodge at, and when I got there I found it was my old Acquaintance John Green who lived with Coll. Chandler at Worcester while I lived with Putnam and married A. Ward, daughter of Captn. Ward and Sister of Sam. Ward who married Dolly Chandler.
Green told me, to day, that he had lived in Woodstock 13 Years and had nothing but bad luck, all the Time. Now he was about to try whether Change of Place, would alter his fortune. I asked what bad Luck? He said he had fail'd in Trade like a fool -- and after Dinner he [said] that the richest Men were such as had fail'd in Trade. His Uncle John Chandler broke once, and very nigh breaking another Time. His Uncle Tommy Green broke once. John Spooner broke once. So I dont entirely despair. -- This News I was not att all surprized to hear, for I thought fifteen Year ago, that Jno. Green would turn out so. He was a boaster of his Vices -- a [illegible] great affecter of licentiousness-and at last got in Love, like a fool, with a Girl, much too good for him. He says that McClelan of Woodstock is the richest Man in that Town, by a great Run of surprizing Luck in Trade in English, W. India Goods and Potash.
Dined at Greens, and after 2 Hours by Sun took my Horse and went to the Spring again, and drank
of the Water. Then I rode up the Mountain, at the Foot of which this Spring ooses. The Hill is high And the Prospect from it, extensive, but few cultivated Spots appear, the Horison
is chiefly Wilderness. The Mountain seems to be a Body of Oar, Iron Oar, I suppose, and the Water filtrating thro
that Mountain of Mineral's imbibes its salubrious Quality. What Particles it is impregnated with, I cant tell -- But it is saturated with something. The Bottom and sides of the Cistern are painted a deep yellow, and a plentifull
Dust or flour remains after the Water is drawn off. They say, that this yellow Sediment is the best thing for Scrophulous Humours, or any other Breakings out, Eruptions, Sores, Ulcers, Cankers, &c.
and his Wife reminded me to day
of the old Story of Betsy Friswell, who staid
at Mrs. Putnams when I was there and afterwards fell in Love, with Green
. She fell in Love [at]
Worcester, but restrained and suppressed her Passion, till sometime after Green
made his Appearance at Woodstock Meeting and the sight of him revived all her old Thoughts and Emotions, and quite overcame her. She went into Fits &c. and her Brother prevailed on Green
to go and see her, and she asked him, whether she should live or die, for her life and death were in his Power. If he would have her she should live, if not, she should die. He said He could not -- he was engaged -- or could not like her well enough -- and She went into Fits, immediately, and
languished away and died. This Anecdote was very familiar to me, when I first left Worcester. I have told it 100 times, with much Pleasure and Laughter, but had entirely forgot it, so that I could not for some Time recollect the Name of Betsy Friswell. But I never heard before the melancholly
Circumstance that the poor Girl died.
The Place where I now sit, in the Chamber in Greens House, has the Command of a great View, this is a Mountainous Country. This House stands upon very high Land, and here is a fine spacious Road laid out, very wide and of great Length and quite strait, which lies right before me now, with the Meeting House in the Middle of it, more than half a Mile off.
Coll. Abijah Willard and Sam Ward and another bought of Wm. [illegible] Brown of Salem, or Virginia, 7000 Acres of Land in this Town, and they are about erecting Iron Mills here, Furnaces, &c. and there is a Talk of making this a Shire Town, &c. Unimproved Land is to be bought in this Town in great Plenty for 6s. an Acre.
At Night, Green call'd to his Wife, come put by your Work and come in, and takes his Family Bible, and reads a Chapter and then makes a long Prayer of half an Hour, and we all go to bed.
1771. WEDNESDAY JUNE 5TH.
Rode to the Spring, drank and plunged. Dipped but once. Sky cloudy.
Activity and Industry, care, and CEconomy, are not the Characteristicks of this Family. Green was to set out upon a journey to Providence to day to get Stores &c. and Stock for Trade, but he lounged and loitered away, hour after Hour till 9 O Clock before he mounted. The Cow, whose Titts strutt with Milk, is unmilked till 9 O Clock. My Horse would stand by the [Head?] Hour after Hour if I did not put him out my self, tho I call upon the father and the Sons to put him out.
Looking into a little Closet in my Chamber this Morning I found a pretty Collection of Books, the Preceptor, Douglass's History, Paradise lost, the musical Miscellany in two Volumes, the Life of the Czar, Peter the great &c.
I laid hold of the ad Volume of the Preceptor, and began to read the Elements of Logick, and considered the four fold Division of the Subject, simple Apprehension, or Perception, judgment or Intuition, Reasoning, and Method. This little Compendium of Logick, I admired at Colledge. I read it over and over. I recommended it to others, particularly to my Chum David Wyer, and I took the Pains to read a great Part of it to him and with him.
By simple Apprehension or Perception we get Ideas, by Sensation and by Reflection, the Ideas we get are Simple, &c.
Mem. -- I hope I shall not forget to purchase these Preceptors, and to make my Sons transcribe this Treatise on Logick
entirely with their own Hands, in fair Characters, as soon as they can write, in order to imprint it on their Memories. Nor would it hurt my Daughter to do
the same. I have a great Opinion of the Exercise of transcribing, in youth.
About 11. O Clock arrived, Dr. McKinstry of Taunton and spoke for Lodgings for himself and Co [Colborn] Barrell and his Wife. -- It is not you? Is it? says he. -- Persons in your Way are subject to a certain weak Muscle and lax Fibre, which occasions Glooms to plague you. But the Spring will brace you. -- I Joy and rejoice at his Arrival. I shall have Opportunity to examine him about this mineral, medicinal Water.
I have spent this day in sauntering about, down in the Pasture to see my Horse, and over the fields in the Neighbourhood
. Took my Horse after noon and rode away East, a rugged rocky Road, to take View of the Lands about the Town -- and went to the Spring. 30 People have been there to day
, they say. The Halt, the Lame, the vapoury, hypochondriac, scrophulous, &c. all resort here. Met Dr. McKinstry
at the Spring. We mounted our Horses together, and turned away the Western Road toward Somers to see the Improvements, that I saw Yesterday from the Mountain by the Spring, and returned, to our Lodgings. -- The Dr.
I find is a very learned Man. He said that the Roman Empire came to its Destruction as soon as the People got set against the Nobles and Commons as they are now in England, and they went on Quarrelling, till one Brutus carried all before him and enslaved em all. -- Caesar, you mean Dr.
-- No I think it was Brutus, want it? -- Thus We see the Dr
. is very Book learnt
. And when we were drinking
Tea, [illegible] I
said, 500 Years hence there would be a great Number of Empires in America, independent of Europe and of each other. -- Oh says he I have no Idea that the World will stand so long -- not half 500 Years. The World is to conform to the Jewish Calculations, every seventh day was to be a day of Rest, every 7th Year was to be a jubilee, and [illegible]
the 7th. Thousand Years will be a Thousand Years of Rest and Jubilee -- no Wars, no fightings, and there is but about 230 wanting to compleat
the 6000 Years. Till that Time, there will be more furious Warrs
Thus I find I shall have in the Dr. a fund of Entertainment. He is superficial enough, and conceited enough, and enthusiastical enough to entertain.
1771. THURDSDAY JUNE 6.
Spent this fine day in rambling on horseback and on foot with Dr. McKinstry East and West, North and South. Went with him twice to the Spring and drank freely of the Waters, and rode about to hire an Horse to carry me to Springfield and Northampton. At last obtained one. The Dr. is alert and chearfull and obliging and agreable.
In the afternoon Colburn Barrell and his Wife and Daughter came, and took Lodgings at our House. Drank Tea and spent the Evening with them. When the Dr.
took his Hat to go out to a Neighbours
to lodge, Colburn
sprung out of his Chair and went up to the Dr.
, took him by the Hand And
kissed him, before all the Company in the Room. This is Sandemanianism.
Rode this day, beyond the Meeting House, and found my old Acquaintance the Parson, John Willard, at his own Door. He lives in a little, mean looking Hutt. How many of my Contemporaries at Colledge, worthy Men, live in poor and low Circumstances! Few of them have so much of this Worlds Goods as have fallen even to my Share, tho some of them have much more. Let me enjoy then what I have, and be gratefull.
Mr. Barrell confirms the Account of Mr. Otis's Behaviour in the House, which Mr. Chandler gave me at Worcester. But says he cannot reconcile this, to Mr. Otis's whole Conduct for a Course of Years
1771. FRYDAY. JUNE 7TH.
Went to the Spring with the Dr. and drank a Glass and an half i.e. a Jill and an half. My Horse was brought very early -- my own Mare I shall leave in a very fine Pasture, with Oats for her twice a Day that she may [illegible] rest and recruit.
this Morning at Breakfast entertained Us with an Account of his extravagant Fondness for Fruit. When he lived at New market he could get no fruit but Strawberries, and he used frequently to eat 6 Quarts in a Day. At Boston, in the very hottest of the Weather he breakfasts upon Water Melons -- neither Eats nor drinks any Thing
else for Breakfast. In the Season of Peaches he buys a Peck, every Morning, and eats more than half of them himself.
In short he eats so much fruit in the Season of it that he has very little Inclination to any other Food. He never found any Inconvenience or ill Effect from fruit enjoys as much Health as any Body
. Father Dana is immoderately fond of fruit, and from several other Instances one would conclude it very wholsome
Rode [illegible] to Somers, over a very high large Mountain which the People here call Chesnut Hill. It is 5 miles over, very bad Road, very high Land. It is one of a Range of great Mountains, which runs North and South Parallell with Connecticutt River, about 10 miles to the East of it, as another similar Range runs on the Western Side of it. There is a Mountain which they call the bald Mountain which you pass by as you cross Chesnutt hill, much higher from whence you can see the great River, and many of the great Turns upon it, as they say. -- Dined at Kibbys, met People going over to the Spring.
In Kibbys Barr Room in a little Shelf within the Barr, I spied 2 Books. I asked what they were. He said every Man his own Lawyer, and Gilberts Law of Evidence. Upon this I asked some Questions of the People there, and they told me that Kibby was a sort of Lawyer among them -- that he pleaded some of their home Cases before justices and Arbitrators &c. Upon this I told Kibby to purchase a Copy of Blackstones Commentaries.
Rode from Kibbys over to Enfield, which lies upon Connecticutt River, oated and drank Tea at Peases -- a smart House and Landlord truly, well dressed, with his Ruffles &c., and upon Enquiry I found he was the great Man of the Town-their Representative &c. as well as Tavern Keeper, and just returned from the gen [general] Assembly at Hartford. -- Somers and Enfield are upon a Levell, a fine Champaign Country. Suffield lies over the River on the West Side of it.
Rode along the great River to Windsor, and put up at Bissalls -- i.e. in East Windsor, for the Town of Windsor it seems lies on the West Side of the River.
The People in this Part of Connecticutt, make Potash, and raise a great Number of Colts, which they send to the West Indies, and barter away for Rum &c. They trade with Boston and New York but most to New York. They say there is a much greater Demand for Flaxseed of which they raise a great deal, at N. York, than there is at Boston, and they get a better Price for it. Kibby at Somers keeps a Shop, and sells W. India goods and English Trinketts, keeps a Tavern, and petty foggs it.
At Enfield you come into the great Road upon Connecticutt River, which runs back to Springfield, Deerfield, Northampton &c. Northward and down to Windsor and Hartford, Weathersfield and Middleton, Southward.
The Soil as far as I have ridden upon the River if I may judge by the Road is dry and sandy. But the Road is 3/4 of a mile from the River and the intervale Land lies between.
I begin to grow weary of this idle, romantic jaunt. I believe [it] would have been as well to have staid in my own Country and amused myself with my farm, and rode to Boston every day. I shall not suddenly take such a Ramble again, merely for my Health. I want to see my Wife, my Children, my Farm, my Horse, Oxen, Cows, Walls, Fences, Workmen, Office, Books, and Clerks. I want to hear the News, and Politicks of the Day. But here I am, at Bissills in Windsor, hearing my Landlord read a Chapter in the Kitchen and go to Prayers with his Family, in the genuine Tone of a Puritan.
1771. SATURDAY JUNE 8TH.
Bissill says, there are Settlements, upon this River, for 300 Miles -- i.e. from Seabrook [Saybrook] where it discharges itself. The River, in the Spring, when the Snow melts, swells prodigiously and brings down the Washings of Mountains and old Swamps, rotten Wood and Leaves &c. to inrich the Intervale Lands, upon its banks.
At eleven O Clock arrived at Wrights in Weathersfield. I have spent this Morning in Riding thro
Paradise. My Eyes never beheld so fine a Country. From Bissills in Windsor to Hartford Ferry, 8 Miles, is one continued Street -- Houses all along, and a vast
Prospect of level Country on each Hand, the Lands very rich and the Husbandry pretty good. The Town of Hartford is not very compact, there are some very handsome and large Houses, some of brick. The State House is pretty large, and looks well. I stopped only to oat my Horse and get my Head and Face shaved, and then rode to Weathersfield 4 miles, on the West Side of the River. -- Here is the finest Ride in America, I believe. Nothing can exceed the Beauty, and Fertility of the Country. The Lands upon the River, the flatt
low Lands, are loaded with rich, noble Crops of Grass, and Grain and Corn. Wright says, some of their Lands, will yeild 2 Crops of English Grass, and two Ton and an half at each Crop, and plenty of after feed besides -- but these must be nicely managed and largely dunged. They have in Weathersfield a large brick Meeting House, Lockwood the Minister. A Gentleman came in and told me, that there was not such another Street in America as this at Weathersfield excepting one at Hadley, and that Mr. Ingersol the Stamp Master told him, he had never seen in Phyladelphia nor in England, any Place equal to Hartford and Weathersfield. -- One Joseph Webb, one Deane
and one Verstille, are the principal Traders here, both in English and W. India Goods.
Dined at the Widow Griswalls [Griswolds]
in Weathersfield about 3 Miles from Wrights, the Road and Country are equally pleasant
all the Way. Sat down to Table with the old Woman and another Woman, and a dirty, long, greybearded Carpenter who was at Work for Landlady, and might be smelled from one Room to the other -- So that these Republicans are not very decent or neat. Landlady and her House -- Wright very very chatty about Boston, Providence, Newport, Marthas Vineyard And Nantuckett. Landlady says the Deputy Governor calls here and always has some comical Story to tell her. He asked her tother
day to come down and see his Wife make cheese. He has 22 Cows, and his Women make Cheese in the forenoon and then dress up and go out, or receive Company at home.
Rode to Middletown, and put up for the Sabbath at Shalers, near the Court House. Middleton I think is the most beautifull
Town of all. When I first opened into the Town which was upon the Top of a hill, there opened before me the most beautifull
Prospect of the River, and the Intervals and Improvements, on each Side of it, and the Mountains at about 10 Miles distance both on the East and West Side of the River, and of the main Body of the Town at a Distance. I went down this Hill, and into a great Gate, which led me to the very Banks of the River. The Road lies here along the Bank of the River and on the right Hand is a fine level Tract of Interval Land as rich as the Soil of Egypt. The Lotts
are divided by no Fence, but here are Strips runing back at right Angles from the River, on one is Indian
Corn, on another Parrallell
to it is Rye, on another Barley, on another Flax, on another a rich Burden of Clover and other English Grasses, and after riding in this enchanting Meadow for some Time you come to another Gate, which lets you into the main Body of the Town, which is ornamented as is the Meadow I just mentioned, with fine Rows of Trees and appears to me as populous, as compact and as polite as Hartford.
The Air all along from Somers to Middleton appears to me to be very clear, dry, and elastic. And therefore, if I were to plan another journey for my Health, I would go from Boston to Lancaster and Lunenbourg, thence to No. 4. and thence down to N. Hampton, Deerfield, Hadley, Springfield, then to Endfield, and along the River down to Seabrook, and from thence over to Rhode Island and from thence to Braintree. And here I might possibly, i.e. at No. 4. look up some Land to purchase for my Benefit, or the Benefit of my Children. But I hope I shall not take another journey merely for my Health very soon. I feel sometimes sick of this -- I feel guilty -- I feel as if I ought not to saunter and loyter and trifle away this Time -- I feel as if I ought to be employed, for the Benefit of my fellow Men, in some Way or other.
In all this Ramble from Stafford, I have met with nobody that I knew, excepting Jo. Trumble, who with his father the Governor were crossing the ferry for the East Side when I was for the West.
Bespoke Entertainment for the Sabbath, at Shalers, and drank Tea. She brought me in the finest and sweetest of Wheat Bread, and Butter, as yellow as Gold, and fine Radishes, very good Tea and sugar. I regaled without Reserve. But my Wife is 150 Miles from me at least, and I am not yet homeward bound. I wish Connecticutt River flowed through Braintree. But the barren rocky Mountains of Braintree are as great a Contrast as can be conceived to the level smoth, fertile Plains of this Country. Yet Braintree pleases me more.
I long to be foul of Deacon Belchers Orchard. I am impatient to begin my Canal, and banks, to convey the Water all round, by the Road and the House. I must make a Pool in the Road by the Corner of my Land at the Yard in front of the House, for the cool Spring Water to come into the Road there -- that the Cattle, and Hogs, and Ducks may regale themselves there.
Looking into the Almanac, I am startled. S [Superior] C [Court] Ipswich is the 18th. day of June. I thought it a Week later 25. So that I have only next Week to go home 150 Miles. I must improve every Moment. It is 25 miles a day if I ride every day next Week.
1771. SUNDAY, JUNE 9TH.
Feel a little discomposed this Morning. Rested but poorly last night. Anxious about my Return -- fearfull of very hot or rainy weather. I have before me an uncomfortable journey to Casco Bay -- little short of 300 miles.
Looking into a little bedroom, in this House Shaylers, I found a few Books, the musical Miscellany, Johnsons Dictionary, the farmers Letters, and the Ninth Volume of Dr. Clarks
sermons. This last
I took for my Sabbath Day Book, and read the Sermon on the Fundamentals of Christianity, which he says [are]
the Doctrines concerning the Being and Providence of God, the Necessity of Repentance and Obedience to his Commands, the Certainty of a Life to come, a Resurrection from the dead and a future judgment.
Read also another Sermon on the Reward of Justice. "There is, says the Dr., a Duty of justice towards the Public. There is incumbent upon Men the very same Obligation, not to wrong the Community; as there is, not to violate any private Mans Right, or defraud any particular Person of his Property. The only Reason, why Men are not always sufficiently sensible of this; so that many, who are very just in their Dealings between Man and Man, will yet be very fraudulent or rapacious with Regard to the Public; is because in this latter Case, it is not so obviously and immediately apparent upon whom the Injury falls, as it is in the Case of private Wrongs. But so long as the Injury is clear and certain; the Uncertainty of the Persons upon whom the Injury falls in Particular, or the Number of the Persons among whom the damage may chance to be divided, alters not at all the Nature of the Crime itself."
Went to Meeting in the Morning, and tumbled into the first Pew I could find -- heard a pretty sensible, Yalensian, Connecticuttensian Preacher. At Meeting I first saw Dr. Eliot Rawson, an old School fellow. He invited me to dine.
His House is handsome without, but neither clean nor elegant within, in furniture or any Thing
else. His Wife is such another old Puritan as his Cousin, Peter Adams's Wife at Braintree. His Children are dirty, and ill governed. He first took me into his Physick
Room, and shewed
me a No.
of Curiosities which he has collected in the Course of his Practice -- first an odd kind of long slender Worm preserved in Spirits. He says he has had between 20 and 30 Patients with such Worms -- several Yards long and some of them several Rods. He shewed
me some fingers he cutt
off and some Wens, and his Physick
Drawers And his Machine to pound with his Pestle &c.
His dining Room is crouded with a Bed and a Cradle, &c. &c. We had a picked up Dinner. Went to Meeting with him in the Afternoon, and heard the finest Singing, that ever I heard in my Life, the front, and side Galleries were crowded with Rows of Lads and Lasses, who performed all the Parts in the Utmost Perfection. I thought I was wrapped up. A Row of Women all standing up, and playing their Parts with perfect Skill and Judgment, added a Sweetness and Sprightliness to the whole which absolutely charmed me. -- I saw at Meeting this Afternoon Moses Paine, who made a decent Appearance and the Dr. tells me lives by his Trade of a shoemaker comfortably from Day to day.
The more I see of this Town the more I admire it. I regrett extremely that I cant pursue my Tour to New Haven.
The Dr. thinks Hancock vain. Told a Story. -- "I was at school with him, and then upon a level with him. My father was richer than his. But I was not long since at his Store and said to Mr. Glover whom I knew, this I think is Mr. Hancock. Mr. H. just asked my Name and nothing more -- it was such a Piece of Vanity! There is not the meanest Creature that comes from your Way, but I take Notice of him -- and I ought. What tho I am worth a little more than they -- I am glad of it, and that I have it that I may give them some of it." I told the Dr. that Mr. H. must have had something upon his Mind -- that he was far from being Arrogant -- &c.
Drank Tea with Landlady, and her Son Mr. Shaylor, in pretty, western Room. But they are not very sociable. In short, I have been most miserably destitute of Conversation here. The People here all Trade to N. York, and have very little Connection with Boston. After Tea went over to the Drs., and found him very social and very learned. We talked much about History &c. He says, that Boston lost the Trade of this Colony by the severe Laws vs. their old Tenor. But they may easily regain the Trade, for the People here are much disgusted with N. York for their Defection from the N [Non] Importation Agreement, and for some frauds and unfair Practises in Trade. He says they have found out that N. York Merchants have wrote home to the Manufacturers in England to make their Goods narrower and of a meaner fabric that they might sell cheaper, and undersell Boston. The Dr. says that Coll. Josa. Quincy quarrells with his Workmen &c. but Norton is a clever Man, he called to see him and was much pleased, &c.
Landlady has an only Son Nat. Shaylor, and she is very fond and very proud of him. He lived with a Merchant -- is now 25 or 26 and contents himself still to keep that Merchants Books without any Inclination to set up for himself. Is a great Proficient in Musick. Plays upon the Flute, Fife, Harpsicord, Spinnett &c. Associates with the Young and the Gay, and is a very fine Connecticutt young Gentleman. Oh the Misery, the Misfortune, the Ruin of being an only Son! I thank my God that I was not, and I devoutly pray, that none of mine may ever be!
1771. MONDAY JUNE 10TH.
Took my Departure from Middleton, homewards, the same Way I went down. Very hot. Oated at Hartford, and reached Bissills of Winser, 23 Miles before Dinner, just as they had got their Indian pudding and their Pork and Greens upon the Table, one quarter after 12. After Dinner attempted to cutt off an Angle, by striking over by Goshen, i.e. Ellington, to Kibbys at Somers, but lost my Way, and got bewildered among Woods and cross Paths, and after riding 10 Miles to no Purpose returned to Bissells, and took the old Rout to Enfield, excessive hot. Lodged at Peases. But passed a very restless uncomfortable Night. Overcome with Fatigue and inflamed with Heat I could not sleep. And my Meditations on my Pillow were unhappy.
1771. TUESDAY JUNE 11.
Rode to Kibbys at Somers but got caught in the Rain -- very heavy plentifull Showers -- I was much wet. Thus I have hitherto had not very good Luck upon my homeward bound Voyage. Dined at Kibbys and then rode over the Mountain to Stafford, went to the Spring and drank of the Waters with a Gentleman from New Jersey, who was there, with a Servant. Dr. McKinstry was gone to Brookfield, to accompany Mr. Barrell so far in his Way home.
1771. WEDNESDAY JUNE 12.
Sat out upon my Return home, oated at Warreners, [illegible] in Brimfield, caught in a cold Rain, obliged to stop at Cheneys in Western in order to dine. Landlord very sick of a Plurisie. While I was at Cheneys 5 Chaises went by. Jona. Amory and Wife, Deacon Newhall and Wife, Ned Paine and Wife and Sister and servants &c. -- Oated at Spencer, drank Tea and putt up at Serjeants in Leicester -- a very good House, neat and clean and convenient &c.
I have had a naked, barren journey. My Brains have been as barren the whole Time, as a sandy Plain, or a gravelly Nole. My Soul has been starved. Came off, just when Company
began to collect. This Week and the next would have brought together a curious Collection of Characters from all Parts of New England, and some perhaps from the Southern Provinces and some from the W. Indies.
1771. THURDSDAY JUNE 13TH.
Remarkable, the Change of Thoughts, and feelings, and Reasonings which are occasioned by a Change of Objects. A Man is known by his Company, and evil Communications corrupt good Manners. "Man is a Social Creature and his Passions, his feelings, his Imaginations are contagious." We receive a Tincture of the Characters of those we converse with.
Stopped at Mr. Putnams, and at the Court House, went in and bowed to the Court and shook Hands with the Bar, [illegible] said How d'ye, and came off. Dined at Coll. Williams's, drank Tea at Munns, with Dr. Cooper and his Lady, Captn. Jona. Freeman and his Lady and Mr. Nat. Barrett and his Lady, who were upon their Return from a Tour to Lancaster.
Rode this day from Worcester to Munns in Company with one Green of Leicester, who was very social, and good Company, an honest, clever Man. By him I learn that Thomas
Faxon of Braintree, has removed with his Family, to Leicester, and hired an House near the Meeting House. And I met Joseph Crane to day
in Marlborough, going to Rutland. He is about removing his Family there. But I find that People in Rutland, and Leicester and Worcester, &c. are more disposed to emigrate still farther into the Wilderness, than the Inhabitants of the old Towns.
I hear much to day and Yesterday of the Harmony prevailing between the Governor and the House. Cushing is unanimous Commissary, not negatived, and Goldthwait is Truckmaster. Behold how good and pleasant it is, for Brethren to dwell together in Unity. It seems to be forgotten entirely, by what means Hutchinson procured the Government -- by his Friendship for Bernard, and by supporting and countenancing all Bernards Measures, and the Commissioners and Army and Navy, and Revenue, and every other Thing we complain of.
I read to day
an Address from the Convention of Ministers, and from the Clergy in the northern Part of the County of Hampshire and from the Town of Almesbury [Amesbury]
, all conceived in very high Terms, of Respect and Confidence and Affection. Posterity will scarcely find it possible, to form a just Idea of this Gentlemans Character. But if this wretched Journal should ever be
read, by my own Family, let them know that there was upon the Scene of Action with Mr. Hutchinson, one determined Enemy to those Principles and that Political System to which alone he owes his own and his Family's late Advancement -- one who thinks that his Character and Conduct have been the Cause of laying a Foundation for perpetual Discontent and Uneasiness between Britain and the Colonies, of perpetual Struggles of one Party for Wealth and Power at the Expence
of the [illegible]
Liberties of this Country, and of perpetual Contention and Opposition in the other Party to preserve them, and that this Contention will never be fully terminated but by Warrs
, and Confusions and Carnage. Caesar
, by destroying the Roman Republic, made himself perpetual Dictator, Hutchinson, by countenancing and supporting a System of Corruption and all Tyranny, has made himself Governor -- and the mad Idolatry of the People, always the surest Instruments of their own Servitude, laid prostrate at the Feet of both. With great Anxiety, and Hazard, with continual Application to Business, with loss of Health, Reputation, Profit, and as fair Prospects and Opportunities of Advancement, as others who
have greedily embraced them, I have for 10 Years together invariably opposed this System, and its fautors. It has prevailed in some Measure, and the People are now worshipping the Authors and Abetters of it, and despizing
, insulting, and abusing, the Opposers of it. -- Edward and Alfred
closed their long Glories with a Sigh to find
th' unwilling Gratitude of base Mankind.
As I came over Sudbury Causey, I saw a Chaplain of one of the Kings Ships fishing in the River, a thick fat Man, with rosy Cheeks and black Eyes. At Night he came in with his fish. I was in the Yard and he spoke to me, and told me the News. -- The Governor gave a very elegant Entertainment to the Gentlemen of the Army and Navy and Revenue, and Mrs. Gambier in the Evening a very elegant Ball -- as elegant a cold Collation as perhaps you ever see -- all in figures &c. &c. &c.
Read this days Paper . The melodious Harmony, the perfect Concords, the entire Confidence and Affection, that seems to be restored greatly surprizes me. Will it be lasting. I believe there is no Man in so curious a Situation as I am. I am for what I can see, quite left alone, in the World.
1771. FRYDAY JUNE 14TH.
A fine Morning.
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Inside Back Cover
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