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led about it. I tell you what, young man, says I, it's mighty pretty now to stroll round here, and pick mosses, and hunt birds' eggs with that gal; but wait till November comes, and everything freezes up stiff and dead except white bears and Ingens, and there's no daylight left to speak of, and you'll be sick enough of your choiceoin, lay buried in the centre of the great swamp in Poplin, New Hampshire; whereupon an immediate search was made for the precious metal. Under the bleak sky of November, in biting frost and sleet rain, some twenty or more grown men, graduates of our common schools, and liable, every mother's son of them, to be made deacons, squitrees by the roadside; and he sighed amidst the rich bottom-lands of his new home for his father's rocky pasture, with its crop of stinted mulleins. So one cold November day, finding himself out of sight and hearing of his wife, he summoned courage to attempt an escape, and, resolutely turning his back on the West, plunged into
November 8th (search for this): chapter 2
ape of a mouse, fall out the bosom of Eunice Cole down into her lap. For all which, the County Court, held at Salisbury, did order her to be sent to the Boston Jail, to await her trial at the Court of Assistants. This last Court, I learn from mine uncle, did not condemn her, as some of the evidence was old, and not reliable. Uncle saith she was a wicked old woman, who had been often whipped and set in the ducking-stool, but whether she was a witch or no, he knows not for a certainty. November 8. Yesterday, to my great joy, came my beloved Cousin Rebecca from Boston. In her company also came the worthy minister and doctor of medicine, Mr. Russ, formerly of Wells, but now settled at a plantation near Cocheco. He is to make some little tarry in this town, where at this present time many complain of sickness. Rebecca saith he is one of the excellent of the earth, and, like his blessed Lord and Master, delighteth in going about doing good, and comforting both soul and body. He
November 13th (search for this): chapter 2
Indians, who had given themselves up for safe keeping, and who had never harmed any, which thing was a great grief and scandal to all well-disposed people. And yet this woman, who scrupled not to say that she would as lief stick an Indian as a hog, and who walked all the way from Marblehead to Boston to see the Quaker woman hung, and did foully jest over her dead body, was allowed to have her way in the church, Mr. Richardson being plainly in fear of her ill tongue and wicked temper. November 13. The Quaker maid, Margaret Brewster, came this morning, inquiring for the Doctor, and desiring him to visit a sick man at her father's house, a little way up the river; whereupon he took his staff and went with her. On his coming back, he said he must do the Quakers the justice to say, that, with all their heresies and pestilent errors of doctrine, they were a kind people; for here was Goodman Brewster, whose small estate had been wellnigh taken from him in fines, and whose wife was a
November 19th (search for this): chapter 2
rtant to take care of the bodies of the little infants which God in his love sends among us, than to seek to pry into the mysteries of His will concerning their souls. He hath no salary or tithe, save the use of a house and farm, choosing rather to labor with his own hands than to burden his neighbors; yet, such is their love and good-will, that in the busy seasons of the hay and corn harvest, they all join together and help him in his fields, counting it a special privilege to do so. November 19. Leonard and Mr. Richardson, talking upon the matter of the ministry, disagreed not a little. Mr. Richardson says my brother hath got into his head many unscriptural notions, and that he will never be of service in the Church until he casts them off. He saith, moreover, that he shall write to Mr. Ward concerning the errors of the young man. His words troubling me, I straightway discoursed my brother as to the points of difference between them; but he, smiling, said it was a long stor
November 22nd (search for this): chapter 2
ice in the Church until he casts them off. He saith, moreover, that he shall write to Mr. Ward concerning the errors of the young man. His words troubling me, I straightway discoursed my brother as to the points of difference between them; but he, smiling, said it was a long story, but that some time he would tell me the substance of the disagreement, bidding me have no fear in his behalf, as what had displeasured Mr. Richardson had arisen only from tenderness of conscience. Haverhill, November 22. Left Newbury day before yesterday. The day cold, but sunshiny, and not unpleasant. Mr. Saltonstall's business calling him that way, we crossed over the ferry to Salisbury, and after a ride of about an hour, got to the Falls of the Powow River, where a great stream of water rushes violently down the rocks, into a dark wooded valley, and from thence runs into the Merrimac, about a mile to the southeast. A wild sight it was, the water swollen by the rains of the season, foaming and da
November 24th (search for this): chapter 2
Wines from France and Muscovado too; to which the young wit replied, that there was Scripture warrant for his drinking, inasmuch as the command was, to give wine to those that be of heavy heart. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more; and, for his part, he had been little better than miserable ever since he heard of Rebecca's betrothal. A light, careless man, but of good parts, and as brave a talker as I have heard since I have been in the Colony. November 24. Mr. Ward's negro girl Dinah came for me yesterday, saying that her master did desire to see me. So, marvelling greatly what he wanted, I went with her, and was shown into the study. Mr. Ward said he had sent for me to have some discourse in regard to my brother Leonard, who he did greatly fear was likely to make shipwreck of the faith; and that Mr. Richardson had written him concerning the young man, telling him that he did visit the Quakers when at Newbury, and even went over to th
nty or more grown men, graduates of our common schools, and liable, every mother's son of them, to be made deacons, squires, and general court members, and such other drill officers as may be requisite in the march of mind, might be seen delving in grim earnest, breaking the frozen earth, uprooting swamp-maples and hemlocks, and waking, with sledge and crowbar, unwonted echoes in a solitude which had heretofore only answered to the woodman's axe or the scream of the wild fowl. The snows of December put an end to their labors; but the yawning excavation still remains, a silent but somewhat expressive commentary upon the age of progress. Still later, in one of our Atlantic cities, an attempt was made, partially at least, successful, to form a company for the purpose of digging for money in one of the desolate sand-keys of the West Indies. It appears that some mesmerized subject, in the course of one of those somnambulic voyages of discovery in which the traveller, like Satan in chao
December 6th (search for this): chapter 2
they feared you would join them. But it is all over now, and you have all the woods to yourself to range in; and if you would let alone strong drink, you would do well. Who makes strong drink? asked the Indian, with an ugly look. Who takes the Indian's beaver-skins and corn for it? Tell me that, Captain. So saying, he put his pack on his back, and calling a poor, lean dog, that was poking his hungry nose into Madam's pots and kettles, he went off talking to himself. Newbury, December 6. We got back from Haverhill last night, Doctor Clark accompanying us, he having business in Newbury. When we came up to the door, Effie met us with a shy look, and told her mistress that Mrs. Prudence (uncle's spinster cousin) had got a braw auld wooer in the east room; and surely enough we found our ancient kinswoman and Deacon Dole, a widower of three years standing, sitting at the supper-table. We did take note that the Deacon had on a stiff new coat; and as for Aunt Prudence (for
December 8th (search for this): chapter 2
ng, Mr. Richardson, who tarried a moment, shook his head at Rebecca, telling her he feared by her looks she was a naughty girl, taking pleasure in other folk's trouble. We did both feel ashamed and sorry enough for our mischief, after it was all over; and poor Mistress Prudence is so sorely mortified, that she told Rebecca this morning not to mention Deacon Dole's name to her again, and that Widow Hepsy is welcome to him, since he is so mean-spirited as to let her rule him as she doth. December 8. Yesterday I did, at my brother's wish, go with him to Goodman Brewster's house, where I was kindly welcomed by the young woman and her parents. After some little tarry, I found means to speak privily with her touching my brother's regard for her, and to assure her that I did truly and freely consent thereunto; while I did hope, for his sake as well as her own, that she would, as far as might be consistent with her notion of duty, forbear to do or say anything which might bring her int
December 31st (search for this): chapter 2
that he was greatly rejoiced to hear of his prospect. He had known Margaret Brewster from a child, and there was scarce her equal in these parts for sweetness of temper and loveliness of person and mind; and, were she ten times a Quaker, he was free to say this in her behalf. I am more and more confirmed in the belief that Leonard hath not done unwisely in this matter, and do cheerfully accept of his choice, believing it to be in the ordering of Him who doeth all things well. Boston, December 31. It wanteth but two hours to the midnight, and the end of the year. The family are all abed, and I can hear nothing save the crackling of the fire now burning low on the hearth, and the ticking of the clock in the corner. The weather being sharp with frost, there is no one stirring in the streets, and the trees and bushes in the yard, being stripped of their leaves, look dismal enough above the white snow with which the ground is covered, so that one would think that all things must
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