This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
 It is not difficult to imagine the appearance of a congregation in 1650,--the men on one side, and the women on the other, sitting on wooden benches, in January, under a thatched roof, with one or two open window-places, without stoves, singing Sternhold and Hopkins and the New England Psalms, and then listening to a two-hours' service with devotion! On Sunday, March 11, 1770, our fathers and mothers, with their entire families, entered, for the first time, their new meeting-house. Unfortunately, their beloved pastor was ill; and the services of the day were performed by Mr. Andrew Elliot, jun., a tutor in Harvard College. The celebrated George Whitefield preached a dedicatory discourse in this house, Aug. 26, 1770, fron 2 Chron. v. 14. Our fathers had no special services for the dedication of a new house of worship, because they could not tolerate any imitation of the English church; and we have always had to regret their further indiscretion in banishing, for the same poor reason, the sacred observance of Christmas and Good Friday. June 11, 1770: “Voted not to grant seats for singers.” July 28, 1771, Sunday: On this day was used, for the first time, the new pulpit-cushion given by William Pepperell, Esq., who imported it from England, at a cost of eleven guineas. March 5, 1787: Some inhabitants of taste and public spirit propose to plant ornamental trees in front of the meeting-house. The town voted not to have them! May 10, 1802: Voted to buy a new bell. Oct. 5, 1812: Voted not to have a stove in the meeting-house! Never was there a house that received fewer repairs. In 1814, they who are first to discover needs, and quickest to relieve them, subscribed one hundred and fifty dollars; and soon the pulpit wore a new color, showed a new cushion, and rejoiced in new curtains. One gentleman was admitted to participation in this pious offering of the ladies, by presenting a copy of the Sacred Scriptures in two volumes.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.