King William’s War 1689–1697
In 1688 war erupted between French and English colonists (with their respective Native allies) along the northern border of Massachusetts Bay, in present-day Maine. By the summer of 1689, Britain had declared war on France, beginning the War of the League of Augsburg in Europe and King William’s War in North America, but the colonists had already engaged in deadly frontier skirmishes.964 The war was marked by sporadic raids on northern settlements along a border that had been left particularly vulnerable after April 1689, when many militia companies returned home following the overthrow of Edmund Andros’s Dominion of New England during the Glorious Revolution. Increasing Native attacks like the “massacre” at Schenectady to the west prompted Massachusetts Governor Simon Bradstreet to call for an invasion of French Canada in the spring of 1690. Under the command of Sir William Phips, the combined colonial forces first focused on gaining Port Royal, Nova Scotia. Following their success, Phips pushed for an attack on Quebec, for which Plymouth Colony supplied 200 men, including fifty Indians. The October attack failed miserably, as English colonists were repelled by forces commanded by the Governor of Canada, Louis de Baude, comte de Frontenac. The English retreat in smallpox-infested ships suffered gale-force winds that blew some ships so far off course that they eventually landed in the West Indies.
By the war’s end, French colonists and their many Native allies had raided Dover (July 1689), Pemaquid (August 1689), Schenectady (9 February 1690), Salmon Falls (18 March 1690), Falmouth, now Portland, (27 May 1690), York (5 February 1692), Wells (10 June 1692), Oyster River (July 1694), Groton (27 July 1694) and Haverhill (15 March 1697), among other settlements. The English launched retaliatory assaults on the Maine-Quebec border, such as the Battle of Brackett’s Woods in 1689, and on Native forts near Brunswick on the Androscoggin River in September 1691 and on another fort near Lewiston shortly thereafter. The English had succeeded in capturing Port Royal only to endure its recapture by the French a year later. The Treaty of Ryswick (30 September 1697) concluded the war, which had ended in a stalemate, and restored all colonial possessions to their original status.
From In the Devil’s Snare by Mary Beth Norton, copyright © 2002 by Mary Beth Norton. Maps copyright © 2002 by David Lindroth, Inc. Used by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.
Many of the letters in this section include war news, especially since Plymouth Colony contributed both men and money to the war effort. In May 1690 the Plymouth Court ordered that sixty-two men under the command of Major John Walley join the combined forces of Massachusetts, Connecticut and New York at Albany, where they had gathered principally to defend the northern frontier.965 Cotton also received and conveyed news concerning Major Fitz-John Winthrop’s aborted mission to attack Montreal in the summer of 1690;966 the desperate situation faced by families trying to live in border towns;967 the attack on York in February 1692;968 plans to construct Fort William Henry in Pemaquid beginning in 1692;969 the raid on Oyster River in July 1694;970 attempted peace negotiations at Fort William Henry in both 1693 and 1695;971 the capture of Bombazeen;972 attacks on Fort William Henry in 1696;973 and Church’s attempted raids along the Maine coast and Newfoundland,974 among other war news. The taking and redeeming of captives on both sides was a primary war tactic, as it had been along the frontier since settlement began. Many of Cotton’s letters described stealth raids, people taken, negotiations for their return, happy reunions, and even occasionally a daring escape.975
The war effort encountered resistance among Plymouth colony towns, several of which refused to send either men or money; in the years after the war, many towns struggled to pay taxes to the colonial government, which was desperately trying to cover soldiers’ salaries.976
To Thomas Hinckley,
15 February 1689
Plymouth February, 15: 1688: /89:
It is noe small comfort to me, & to many here that feare God to heare of the Lords gratious recovering of you from your late sickness, he in mercy perfect his goodnesse in that respect & grant <in> according to the desire of your heart some blessed fruit to & in you & all yours both of the casting downe & Lifting up; God hath spetiall designes of grace in all his dealings with his Children; & as you have experienced of former, soe doubtlesse you will of this also, that it shall turn to your salvation through prayer & the supply of the spirit of Jesus Christ.
Sir, concerning the papers of which you speake,977 Deac: Faunce978 hath them ready, only waites for a safe hand to convey them by; God give successe to your endeavours to vindicate truth & obtaine Justice & reward your endeavours thereabouts: Concerning Newes, I wholly omit writing, because I conclude all & more then I know comes from Mr M: to his son:979 2 sleds at shipscott going homeward, the latter of them was assaulted, the Indians fired & killed one man, & wounded another who escaped, the dead they scalpt & went home triumphing;980 Mr John Blake is dead.981 & the only maiden-daughter of Capt Philips, sister to Cos: Cotton Mathers wife;982 a dreadfull fine of 10 pd for Farewell; Jemison quasht his Indictment. Mr Stoughton writes me word,983 that when he spake to you of 10 pd for me, it was without booke & by guesse, something I had much short of that summe but all is gone,984 & some Indian creditors are not yet paid, I did hope for some from you till I had your letter, but I am content, having bin faithfull in that litle I received, but of this vivâ voce;985 my wife is for Boston on monday; with our service to you & yours
I rest, Sir, your Honours to serve
Salute Mr Russell.
Hinckley Papers 2:27, Prince Library, Rare Book and Manuscripts, Boston Public Library. Addressed “These For the Honoured, Thomas Hinckley Esquire, at his house in Barnstable.”
George Keith986 to John Cotton,
Here follow a few words of a Letter to John Cotton, called a Minister, at Plymouth in New-England.
Having seen a few Lines from thy hand, attested by thee, and other two Witnesses, wherein thou and they declare, That in the Town of Plymouth in New-England, last summer, save one, ye heard me affirm, That the Scriptures are the Word of God. My Answer to thee and them, is, That ye have not dealt fairly, nor as becoming true Witnesses, in this case; for every Witness should declare all the Truth, and conceal nothing of the Truth which they heard. Now this ye have not done, but diminished from my words, as your Consciences may bear witness, if your Memory be not bad; for I very well remember my words at that time,
which were these, That I did acknowledge the true Sense of the Scripture to be the Word of God, and that in the same I was not singular in my Perswasion, from the people called Quakers; for Samuell Fisher987 in his Book called, Rusticus Academicos,988 that hath been in print upwards of twenty five Years, hath affirmed the same, to wit, That the true Sense of Scripture is the Word of God. And at that time I further said, That not everyone who had the Letter of the Scripture, had the Word of God, to speak properly, because they had not the true sense of Scripture, which none have, but such to whom it is given by the Spirit of God. I also did further affirm, That the Letter or words of Scripture may be called the Word in a figurative sense, as the Map or Card of England is called England, and that the Greek word is used in Scripture in divers acceptations. All this, and more to the same purpose I spoke to thee at that time.
George Keith, A Refutation of Three Opposers of Truth, by plain Evidence of the holy Scripture . . . And a few words of a Letter to John Cotton, called a Minister, in Plymouth in New England (Philadelphia, 1690), 73 [Evans 516]. Charles Evans, American Bibliography (New York, N.Y., 1941–1959).
From John Cotton (1661),
5 August 1690
plimouth August 5: 90:
On Saturday Evening about 16 houses besides warehouses and Bruehouses burnt at Boston989 from ye Mill Bridge down halfe way to ye draw Bridge, Mr Rocks, Mr persons. No News of Indians; Major Winthrop was to march at ye head of ninteene hundred Mawquas990 and Indians, with 600 christian from Albany to mount Royall,991 Last tuesday morning, Canady is poor and discouraged Expect nothing but desolation. port Royall letters give ye account. ye fleete is to sayle to day. ye small pox as bad as ever.992 printer Greene dead of it in thre days, his wive also dead.993 Cous sarah peirce dead Last Saturday night,994 An Lobloone pritty well of it. Cous conrys childe dead. Mr Hale saith God calls, ye Countrey cals, <and> Authority cals and christs Interest cals, and yre sone doth and will goe to Cannady though his church and wife are unwilling.995 Wise: Emerson: Overton:996 no more as I know of. St Christophers retaken by our fleete: forty 3 men Lost in taking of it. A Brigonteene Last Saturday night from ffamouth England designed for New York arrived at Boston. Eleven weeks passage.997 News very discouraging to our Late hectoring Enemys. King william gone to Ireland with a great ffleet. twenty thousand ffrench also Landed there.998 King of france hath call in all pirates privateere, ye seas yrefore not dangerous. some thinke he hath a mind to step to white Hall to see whether an English Crowne will suite a french head. London Gazets say our Agents and Sr Edmonds Crew were safely arrived wn our king was gone downe to his fleete, ye packquet Boat had a moneths passage thither, she Lewis and another are expected every hour. ye two sorts of Gentlemen were ordered to appear before ye committee of Lords for forreigne planons.999 ye first thing alleadged against our fooes was ye seazing him yt brought ye proclamation and imprisoning of him and using all means to keep it from ye knowledge of ye Countrey, witness being by; ye were found Gilty and so are committed, yy are neither Lords nor Governours but Jaile [Bire?] and so like to remaine. Sr. Edmons counsell desired our Agent to set yr hands to ye Articles against him our councell said it was sottish and unresonable for it was New Engl not ye Agents yt Articled againts ym. so yy were Husht. Sr Hen Ashurst1000 Unk Mather1001 yt Agents had access in to her Majesty’s presence and yr Lips were graced with ye salutation of her Hand. as much respect manifested as can be desired we had Hanging over our affaire there1002
ye Queen accounts us some of ye Best of Her subjects, and Gratiously saith we shall be dealt with as such. We are all well here, my mother Love to yourselfe ye duty of ye Rest. My Love to Brother
I rest your dutifull son
Curwen Family Papers, American Antiquarian Society. Addressed “These ffor ye Revend Mr John Cotton A Barnstable.” Endorsed “From my son John Received, August, 7: 1690:”
From William[?] Trail,
15 August 1690
[Beaumorise?] Augt 15. 1690.
Reverend & worthy Sir
I do take hold of the first opportunity I [have] had of writing to you, & of thanking you & yours for the kindness & [. . .] at Plimmouth in April last: I know [it was given?] me in the name of a disciple [the]refore whatever I be, it shall not lose its reward. We had a safe passage to [. . .], which I looked upon, more & rather at the gracious return of your own & your godly neighbors prayers for us, then of our own. The account of the publike affairs of these Nations, you will have from the prints, & from the report of those who carry our Letters to America. I am by good hands informed that our King Wm is a real godly man (a rare thing upon that throne) & has been a seeker of God since he was 8 years of age: I have seen & spoke with a serious godly Gentleman who was intimate with him when in Holland, to whom the then Prince, now King, did give a particular account of his case & exercise, & evidences of his piety; & indeed I think that the Devil & pope & Jacobites know too well that he is such a man, otherwise the English, Irish, Scotch & french hell-hounds would not have banded so against him. The Earle of Melvill (now his Majesties High Commissioner & chief Ruler in Scotland)1003 & severall others of the Nobility are known to be godly men: but there is a very wicked party in Scotland, who cease not to do what mischief they can, & there is a party of Highlanders in arms there & making disturbance: yet in Judah severall things go well, & others are mending; although many evil men & almost all the seducers are waxing worse & worse. I do kindly salute Mistress Cotton & your sons & daughters, & your praying serious friends & neighbours in Plimmouth, to whose kindness you know I am much obliged. I am not unmindfull of my promise to Mistress Cotton, but I have not had acess as yet to my fathers books;1004 yet I intend to send her either the book I promised, or (if I can not get it) a better of the same kinde. Those of the [Prelaticall preachers] that have not been as yet turned out by several State Acts of Parlt & Council in Scotland, nor yet by the rabble (who yet have turned out many) the presbytaries there are trying them, & turning out the scandalous & insufficient; so that few of that gang are like to be left in that Kingdom. So much at present [. . .] Sr
Your very much obliged Brother & Servt
Curwen Family Papers, American Antiquarian Society. Addressed “For ye Revd mr John Cotton In Plimth N England.” Endorsed “From Mr Trail August, 15: 1690:” Two small holes and some staining.
From Cotton Mather,
17 October 1690
Boston. 17.D 8.M 1690.
Die ob Fratres mortem, et memorabili, et miserabili.1005
Seeing of you, and (in ye want thereof) Hearing from you, are things, wch I count among none of my small Satisfactions. I do therefore particularly thank you for your last.1006 I bless God, for that Faith, wch has carried my Cousin Roland thrô his late Exercises, unto such an Issue; Lett him not imagine, that hee shall bee a Looser by any self-denial for ye Interest of God; the great God will see th[a]t hee shall bee no looser: One Sandwich will pro[ve] I am perswaded, worth Ten Dedhams to him, since hee has been determined by God, more than by himself, in his acceptance of ye calls that have been given him.1007 Remember me kindly to him.
The late sheet of Public Occurrences,1008 has been ye Occasion of much Discourse, it seems, about ye Countrey; & some that might as well have been spared. People had & have a Notion, that I was ye Author of it. but as it happened well, ye publisher1009 had not one line of it from mee, only as accidentally meeting him in ye high-way, on his Request, I show’d him how to contract & Express ye Report of ye Expedition at Casco & ye East. However, ye Government, knowing that my Name was tossed about it, & knowing nevertheless that there was but One publisher, who pick’t up here & there what hee inserted, they emitted a very severe proclamation against ye Poor Pamphlett, ye first line whereof thunders against Some, that had published that Scandalous Thing. This Accident gave a mighty Assistance to ye Calumnies of ye people against poor mee, who have deserved so very Ill of ye Countrey. The Reason, why I sent you not one of ye papers, was because I did myself at first agree in my Opinion wth such as Disliked ye two passages of ye Maqua’s1010 & ye monster Louis; but I have since changed my mind. I now find, there is not a Word said of ye Maqua’s, but what wee ought to say To ym, or else wee bring Guilt upon ors[elves]. As for ye French Tyrant, nothing is mention’d of him, but as a Remote Report, and yett wee had ye thing in Print long ago: and hee is permitting ye Wickedest libels in ye World, to bee published of or K. Wm,1011 and for us to talk (as his good subjects here do) of being afraid of offending him, When wee are taking from him ye best Countrey hee has in America, is methinks a pretty Jest. But lett it go as it will; they that had a mind to make mee odious, have attained their End, wth as much Injustice as could well have been used; & a few such Tricks will render mee uncapable of Serving either God or Man, in N. England.
I do not know, Whether Harris will go on wth his Occurrences, or no; but if hee do, I shall Endeavour monthly to supply you. I look upon his Design, to bee a very Noble, useful, & Laudable Design; and some that you have heard Rail against it, might do well to Endeavour themselves to do something that may render ym worthy to bee accounted Serviceable, before they discourage such Honest men, as those three or four (whereof, I tell you again, I was None) Ingenious men, frô wm Harris had his Occurrences.
Sr. Forgive ye Length of this Impertinent letter. I write this meerly for Want of Other Occurrences; whereof th[ere are] at this time a Great Scarcity; God Grant Good ones when they come.
Remember mee, to Relations wth you; and beleeve that I am,
Sr, No Less Your Servant then Your Kinsman
Special Collections, University of Virginia Library. Addressed “To the Reverend John Cotton, Pastor to ye Church in Plymouth.” Endorsed “From my Cousen, Mr Cotton Mather, october, 17: 1690:.”
From Ichabod Wiswall,
17 October 1690
Dyers Court in Aldermanbury London: October: 17: 1690
Revd Sr you are the only person from whom I have received a line since my departure from N:E:1012 under which consideration I hold my selfe more especially obliged to returne you thankes And to give you an epitome of News. so much desired by you.—after one storme of six-weekes and 6 dayes: (with very little Intermission) we arrived at Bristoll. march ye 30: And by Land arrived at London April ye 5. The kings designe to goe persenaly into Ireland was a remora in the Buisines of ye patent. the king went from London June ye 4: and at ye River Boyne June ye 30 And July the 1 showed matchless valour,1013 And god Allmighty showed no less care in that wonderfull preservation of his Royal person After king James’ flight king william Entered Dublin & having conquered many places besieged Limerick but being forced by great raines to raise his siege: he is returned back to England and was welcomed Septemb: 10 with great joy: witness ye many Bonefines trumpets: Bells Trumpets great gunes and fireworks employed that night with repeated huzzas & shouts in all parts of the City. Since his maties returne we are certainly Informed that Tyrronell: Lazune & Berwick with all the ffrench army are gon from Ireland to ffrance1014 despairing of any success there. Corke & kingsaile are surrendered to king william1015 & there is some sickness in Lymerick. so that it is hoped that all Ireland will be reduced this winter. many persons are flocking daily to Ireland to dwell there so general and most mens hopes of an absolute conquest there by king william. June ye 30 there was a sea fight in our chanell In which ye: Dutch and some few English behaved themselves like men: But such complaints rose against E: Torrington the English Admirall1016 that he is put in [. . .] and remaines in the former and in his roome three surren[dered?] viz: Sr John Ashbey Sr Richard Haddock: & Sr Tho: killegrens.1017 the Parliament began to sit October ye 2: And have voted many hundred thousands of pounds to manadge a war with ffrance next summer. The poore vadois have enjoyed wondrous mercys this Last summer. The massachusets [pat]ent is I hope in a faire waye to be compleated in a short time And poore plymouth might have been equaly happy (if they had not neglected their Opportunity.) by sending another Addresse to the king.1018 Here is nothing yet don for plymouth: & I shall tell you the reason if ever god bring me back againe to see youre face with ye faces of my other friends in N:E: which god in mercy hasten.) There have been some moving to annex plymouth: to New york: others to unite Plymouth & the massachusets as one: both which at present seem to be stoped. And if the massachusets patent be granted this winter: it behoves plymouth to use their utmost care & diligence that they be not deprived of their Long enjoyed priviledges by their Oune neglect to Look out in season. Oh Sr bend your knees to the father of mercies that N:E: and partiqularly N:P:1019 may be once more happily setled and not returne againe to her Late bondage: you know not our present Circumstances: pray for us that we may not be Lead into temptation. nil nisi vota p supersunt.1020 The Torys Labour to fill mens eares & hearts with horror on the accot: of ye pretended desolation and Confusion of N:E: and say the Land will be ruined except a generall Governor be sent! I believe some in N:E: will be ashamed when they heare the Extracts of their Owne writings. Sr Improve your Interest with the Governr for to hasten plymouth setlement. Remember me to mr Arnold:1021 to your good wife & children & to my plymouth neighbours as you have occasion partiqularly to Elder Cushman
The eternal god be your comon Refuge & cover poore plymuth in the hollow of hand where is the hiding of his power so prayes he who is Sr your ffellow labourer in xt.
Curwen Family Papers, American Antiquarian Society. Addressed “These for mr John Cotton junr at his house in plimouth.” Endorsed “From mr wiswall october, 17: 1690 from England.”
From Increase Mather,
25 October 1690
London october. 25. 1690.
I have recd serverall lrs from you this sumer;1022 For wch I thank you. I have more yn once desired Mr Boyle1023 & other principal gentlemen cncrned in ye Indian Corporation yt yy would be kind to you. They ordered you 40 pound in silver.1024 Above halfe a year ago it was resolvd yt ye disposal of ye moneys due should be put into more hands yn one. yy were pleased to <ask> call for my Advice as to ye psons to be entrusted. I mentioned to you, mr Hinkley,1025 & Major Treat1026—At Boston, Mr Bradstreet,1027 Mr Stoughton,1028 Major Richards,1029 & Mr [Marston?]1030 yy are pleased to add one more wch I did not nominate, a Relacion of yors here.
I am [sorry?] you mention such a poor mean Argument as yt of yr debt to me. you do not know me if you think such Considerations will sway wth me. That money is due to my wife yor sister, whom I must not see wronged.
I doubt1031 yor Colony will be annexed to new-york [wch?] will not (I suppose) make you ye happiest Colony in N.E. I did once prvent it but I [?] Septimus [?] is able to do yor [illeg] part? then I (or an 100 more wiser yn I am) Can do you service. Rtr to my sister & to all yors.
I am, yor affectinate Brothr
Mather Family Papers, American Antiquarian Society. Addressed “To ye Revd Mr John Cotton, pastor of ye church in plymouth New England” Endorsed “From my Brother, Mr Increase Mather, october, 25: 1690:”
From Shubael Dummer,1032
13 January 1691
yorke Jan 13TH (90)
mr John Cotten
I received yours from Salisbury1033 & acknowledge your kind lines & particular remembrance of this poor place wherein Providence hath Cast my lot, it is a great favour of almighty god (& I heartily wish we ma[y] all see ye goodnesse of god in ye kindnesse of men) to stirr up ye hearts of his People with you to Contribute to ye necessity of ys poor townes.1034 you are ye fir[st] that have done any thing of this Nature ye lord Jesus I hope will accept it as done unto himselfe Amongst whome yr are some Alas yt so few that love him in sincerity. I desire though unknown to be Commended to those our neighbors & xtian freinds that have been ye promoters of & acters in this liberall Contribution & pray yt ye blessing promised to ym yt Consider ye poor may rest upon all yr heads & hearts & yrs after ym. Particularly unto Major church1035 of your Colony whome ye lord has been pleased to make an instrument of good service to this poor province both formerly & also Lately in taking those Captive Indians by which our Captives were redeemed & without whome I believe we should hardly have seen ye faces of any of ym. for what Cause is he no more Improovd I know not. yr are Many in our towne in a suffering Condition sundry Eastern peo[ple] that formerly & some this last Summer were driven from yr dwellings & have litle or nothing to live [. . .] Many widdows & fatherlesse ones & sundry of ym belonging to our church whose Relations helpes & guides were taken away in ye late spreading wasti[ng] sicknesse1036 which through mercy our neighbors at well[s] were not visited with. they in yt towne are General[ly] better to passe in outward [vessels?] yn we in our towne only they may looke upon ymselves in Grea[ter] danger because next to ye Enemy. but who kn[ows] where they may Come first. how ye Contri[bution] shall be disposed of whether to ye [. . .] must be left to your selves & good Reason [. . .] what may be appropriated to our town if y[ou] please to make mention of my Name together with Major Davis1037 or Captain Alcocke1038 or Lieutenant Preble1039 all or any of ys to receive & also to take care of ye dividing ye same as ye Greater need Calls for. Sr. pray for us yt if it be [the] will of god we may yet be preserved. but [. . .] for Sanctification of all affecting Provide[nce] & yt ye lord would please to disquiet those that [. . .] ye rest of our Captives & refuse to let ym goe.
thus in hast. for our thankesgiving is to morrow ye 14th day of this present Month & I am glad we heard of this Contribution that Among other acknowledgments ys may be one. ye lord be with you as he was with your father & as he has Gratiously promist Lo I am with you alway &c. I have Enclosed ye lett[ers] to Capt. Thomas1040 unsealed yt you may understand what they have written. Pray seal it & with all speed deliver it. Service to Mrs Cotton.
Your friend & Servt. in xt
Nichols Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society. Addressed “For ye Revered. Mr John Cotten Pastour of ye Church of xt in Plymouth ys.”
To Rowland Cotton,
31 January 1691
To Mr Roland Cotton at Sandwich.
Plimouth. Jan. 31.1690/91
I know you long for newes: but wn Hannah came, I had none to tell you. But Leift Colimore1041 being at Boston, was desir’d to go to such a man for Letters of great concernmt. He did, & came at Boston with ym yesterday, & is this Day cm hither on purpose to bring ym Hither: & therefore you must This Day post ym to ye Govr.
Brothr Mather1042 hath written Letters to Him, & his son hath sent ym enclos’d in his. Our Condition here calls with speed for a General Court. If it cou’d have been sooner, it had been well. Many Things in my Letters I cannot conveniently [write] but you may see ym when you come. Couz mather1043 [says] yt his Father understanding there was [. . . .] Pl[imouth [. . .] in ye Gov. of New] York Comission [. . .]1044 [joined]1045
The Act of General Indemnity [. . . .] 1690, Pardoned all Treasons &c comm[. . . .] English Plantations before ye last Feb[. . . .] comprehended our late oppresors. Gov[looks like Sloughter, is a]1046 modereate church man, & a good natured Gentleman1047
England will this spring make a powerfull Invation upon France. The Duke of Savoy having restored ye Waldenses their Liberties, hath declared War upon France, & made som powerfull impression upon his adversaries.
Tell Mr Prince his Brothr Thomas1048 is safely arrived in England. Capt Ware brought Mr Dudley, many passengers more, Mr Thomas Fairweather;1049 Mr [Sim]on Eyres1050 Mr Brenton, Mr [like Suckanam]1051 who came to be Collector, Mr Barton [or Paxton]1052 who hath brought much Riggin & can [supply all]1053 ye Countrey. Capt Lewis, Foster, Prince, Bant &c suddenly expected. Much Powder is come. West & Palmer coming to New York. Randolph is desolate,1054 walking about [. . . .] complaints how [. . . .]ne [. . .]1055 Hand was shot off [. . .]1056 cos. mather’s wife was [. . .] with ye small Pox, but Recovering. I shall soon see you after Feb.8. Salute Mr Prince & his wife, ye Elder1057 & his, Capt Basset.1058 The Lord bless & make you a Blessing
your Loving Father
Thomas Prince Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society. Addressed “To Mr Rowland Cotton at Sandwich.” This letter is a manuscript copy in Prince’s hand. The original, now lost, was apparently much degraded. The superscription habits more accurately reflect Prince’s than Cotton’s, who rarely employed superscription.
To Thomas Hinckley,
6 February 1691
Plimouth February, 6: 1690: /91:
Though an opportunity of speaking vivâ voce1059 may be at hand, yet I can noe longer check my desire of speaking to you by this paper-messenger; what my owne letters from Boston & o: E:1060 doe say, render me noe stranger to what was sent you from thence lately; Sir, I doubt not of your faithfulnesse & sollicitous care to promove the best interest of this poore Colony, who hath not only deserved ill from the hands of God, but have soe demeaned themselves to the Authority of their owne choosing, as not to deserve from man to say, I will be your Healer; yet, Good Sir, I hope you will overlooke all such discouraging considerations, & at this day stand forth & play the man for our God & for the cities of our God;1061 That wee are not in Col: Sclaters [Sloughter’s] Commission (who, Mr. Dudley sayes is probably arrived at N: yorke before this day) is noe doubt true, that as yet wee are not conclusively disposed of at whitehall I take for granted, the Question then is, What shall wee doe? I doubt not but you have many a time this weeke made such an enquiry in your addresses unto God, & I know you are wont soe far too condescend as to aske some weake men their opinions; my experience whereoff quickens me to this present boldnesse in thus writing to your Honour; not that I am now ready to presume, in suggesting what seemes to be our present duty, but I make bold to say, that having had converse by letters & otherwise with men of wisdome, prudence & piety, I finde a notable inclination upon their spirits with great unanimity to move that your selfe would thinke favourably & complyingly of taking a voyage to o: E:1062 I believe none among us will be free to trust any but your selfe, & as for the many hundreds of pounds that must be collected to defray the charge of such an undertaking, I finde amongst us a great readyness (maugre all our great charges) to contribute largely thereunto, & the feares of going to N: yorke in most & the unwillingnesse of others to be under Boston, make them willing to any expences to prevent the same; I could almost be willing to thinke, that whatever improbabilities there were (as things were circumstance at whitehall) for us last yeare to obtaine a charter, yet a prudent messenger might (if there himselfe, with such friends as I beleve he would there finde) suggest such Arguments as would either obtaine a distinct charter or at least such priviledges & immunities in our affixing us to Boston, as would render our condition very comfortable; but alas, Good sir, I have quite forgot my selfe, when I first began, I only intended to suggest to your gratious consort that she should be willing to lend You to the Lord in soe great a service, if God shall call you thereunto, & hearing soe many speak much for it, I thought it but duty to acquaint you therewith, that your sedate minde may revolve it before you come hither; It falles in course (& for me unhappily) to be my Lectureday, Mr Arnold1063 intends to be here, I wish Mr Russell1064 would come also if Mr Keith1065 come not, I shall have his lines, never did poore Plimouth (me Judice) need more helpe from heaven & earth than at this day; I know you have candour enough to pardon my boldnesse, I have oft experienced it; with due Respects & service to you & Mris Hinckley, commending you & this great affaire to the Wonderfull, Counssellour, desiring your prayers for me & mine,
I rest, Sir, yours humbly to serve
Capt Clap is dead.1066
Hinckley Papers 3:34, Prince Library, Rare Book & Manuscripts, Boston Public Library. Addressed “These For the Right Worshipfull, Thomas Hinckley Esquire, Governour of the Colony of New-Plimouth, at Barnstable.”
From Cotton Mather,
14 September 1691
14D 7M 1691 Boston
The short and Long & ye Truth, of or Intelligence from England is, That ye K. ye Last Day hee was at Whitehal, declared it his pleasure & purpose, that N.E.1067 should have charter priviledges Restored;1068 Nevertheless (sd hee) ‘I think it will bee for ye Welfare of that people If I send over a General, or a Governr, to Unite ye Territory & inspect ye Militia of it. However (added hee) I will not send any person, but one that shall bee acceptable to that people, & Recomended by their Agents here.’ This notwthstanding, ye clerk of ye Council made a false Entry of ye Kings Order as if wee were to bee settled Like Barbados &c. at wch or Tories there grew mighty brisk. But before ye month was out, they grew down in ye mouth. The clerks forgery was discovered, & by Order, or Charter was finished (tho not yet sealed) by wch or Colony, unto wch ye Eastern parts1069 are added, have power to choose D. Governr & Assistents & all General Officers, on ye Last Wednesday, of every May; Only ye K. Reserves to himself, ye Liberty of sending a General for all ye United Colones: who nevertheless will have no power to do anything in or colony wthout ye Concurrence of or own Magistrates; nor can any Lawes be made, or Taxes Levied, wthout a general Court. There are several Additional priviledges in this charter, wch make it better than or old one; & or friends in England Express much satisfaction in it. This is now like to bee or settlement; but I suppose, Plymouth, which is so wonderfully sottish, as to take no Care of itself, is like to bee thrown in as a Province, wch ye Governr may have particular Instructions about. The K. you know chooses or Magistrates for ye first year, most of or old ones, are pitch’d on; some New ones are added, whose Names tis needless to mention; & Mr Stoughton will be ye first D. Governr. The Governr of ye whole1070 I suppose, I know,—but, multa cadunt intra calicem supremaqe Labra.1071
I suppose p my next, I shall send you my, Little Flocks guarded against Grievous Wolves.1072 Heaven guard us all from all sorte of ym. Remember mee to my Relations wth you. and pray for
Sr, Your Kinsman & Servt
Mather Family Papers, American Antiquarian Society. Addressed “To the Reverend Mr John Cotton, Plymouth” Endorsed “From Mr Cotton Mather September, 14: 1691:”
From Cotton Mather,
8 December 1691
Dec. 8: 1691: Boston
I sent you a letter some weeks ago, wch I suspect by Yours to Day,1073 is not yett come to your Hands. My Newes-Papers were few, and those few that are worth your seeing are not now at hand. The most Considerable thing of all, I now send you not, because I am Reprinting of it; namely, The Blessed, Glorious, Ominous Union, between ye presbyterians & Congregationals.1074 Your dear Brother-in-Law,1075 was a Principal Author of that Long-Train’d Transaction; Whereof You may quickly see more.
I send you all ye Almanacks I have.
Mr Russel, will inform you about ye business of my Removal.1076 The story of my Father’s having sent for his family, is false. If we have certain advice of Andros’s Return to N. E. You will find half a dozen, or half a score of ye most Considerable persons in ye Countrey (who are yett Nameless) immediately to strike into England; <the> and they will not go, Except I accompany ym. There will bee no other way to save All; and That way (for Certain Causes that must not bee mentioned) will certainly save All. The Gentlemen will not Fly, as or Fools call it, but go where or Tories would bee lothe to have ym go. The Danger of things Coming to this pass, has made it necessary for mee to speak aforehand of my Inclinacions; for I shall not stirr, wthout ye Advice of ye Church I belong to; Others may go, with less Antecedent preparations.
But this Day, wee have Advice, that ye King was Returned into England; wch gives us Cause to hope that or Adversaries are still Clog’d. God clog ym a Little further, and all will bee well.
Remember mee, to Yours, and pray continually for
New England Papers (#2833-z), Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Addressed “For ye Revd John Cotton Plymth.” Endorsed “From Mr Cotton Mather December, 8: 1691:.” In another hand: “his going to England.”
1. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 36, Houghton Library, Harvard University.
2. See “Report of Committee to General Court of Connecticut Colony,” 20 March 1662.
3. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts 39 (1961): 60–61.
4. Daniel Gookin, Historical Collections of the Indians in New England (New york, 1972), 50–51.
5. For Cotton’s missionary work on Martha’s Vineyard, see Len Travers, “The Missionary Journal of John Cotton, Jr., 1666–1678,” Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society 109 (1999): 52–101.
6. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1855–61), 10:329.
7. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 144.
8. The records of the Plymouth church during Cotton’s tenure are printed in CSM, 22:144–86.
9. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 47.
10. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 46.
11. CSM, 22:146.
12. See the letter from Joshua Moodey, 1 April 1676.
13. CSM, 22:150, 151.
14. CSM, 22:148.
15. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 36.
16. To Rowland Cotton, 8 and 9 December 1696.
17. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 47.
18. Arthur Lord, “Rev. John Cotton of Plymouth,” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Transactions 26 (1924–26): 79–81.
19. The Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1674–1729, ed. M. Halsey Thomas (New york, 1973), 1:378. If Cotton had gotten wind of Mather’s remarks, he might understandably have regretted his defense of Mather six years earlier.
20. “The Diary of Cotton Mather, 1681–1708,” ed. Worthington Chauncey Ford, Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 7th ser., 8 (Boston, 1911), 236–37.
21. To Joanna Cotton, 8 July 1698.
22. To Joanna Cotton, 8 July 1698.
23. From Rowland Cotton, 25 April 1699.
24. Josiah Cotton, “Account of the Cotton Family,” 37.
25. “Diary of Cotton Mather,” 23 October 1699, 1:319–20.
26. “Thomas Prince” in John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–), 5:341–68.
27. Thomas Prince, A Chronological History of New England in the Form of Annals, Being a summary and exact Account of the most material Transactions and Occurrences relating to This Country, in the Order of Time where in they happened, from the Discovery by Capt Gosnold in 1602, to the Arrival of Governor Belcher in 1730, with an Introduction Containing A brief Epitome of the most remarkable Transactions and Events Abroad from the Creation; Including the connected Line of Time, the Succession of the Patriarchs and Sovereigns of the most famous Kingdoms & Empires, the gradual Discoveries of America, and the Progress of the Reformation to the Discovery of New England (Boston, 1736).
28. John Van de Wetering, “Thomas Prince’s Chronological History,” William and Mary Quarterly, 3d ser., 18 (1961): 546–57.
29. See below, for example, John Cotton to Rowland Cotton, 31 January 1691.
30. Wethersfield was already a troubled town by the time Cotton arrived there. In 1659 some townsmen, disgusted with the church’s changing baptismal policies, left Wethersfield and, along with Hartford dissidents, formed the Connecticut River town of Hadley in Massachusetts. Not all of the dissenters went, however, and lingering resentments may have fueled the impression that the town was subject to a “Judgment or Curse of god.” Samuel Harrison Rankin Jr., “Conservatism and the Problem of Change in the Congregational Churches of Connecticut, 1660–1760” (Ph.D. diss., Kent State University, 1971), 21, 36.
31. Probably Joan Sheaffe Crittenden (d.1668), widow of William Crittenden of Guilford and New Haven. An influential man, Crittenden had been one of the founders of the New Haven church, a lieutenant in the colony’s militia, and a magistrate. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1990), 1:382.
34. Elizabeth Deming Foote Wells, widow of Nathaniel Foote and second wife of Gov. Thomas Wells. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:478.
35. One of the sons of the late Gov. Thomas Wells, who with his siblings had recently made complaint to the court at Hartford concerning Cotton’s handling of Gov. Wells’s estate. Samuel was admitted a freeman of the colony in 1657 and in the year before had been named ensign for the Wethersfield militia. J. Hammond Trumbull, The Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut (Hartford, 1850), 1:297, 311; Records of the Particular Court of Connecticut 1639–1663, Collections of the Connecticut Historical Society, 22 (Hartford, 1928), 242.
36. A reference to Gen. 39, in which Joseph spurns the sexual advances of his master’s wife and is accused by her of the wrongdoing.
37. The names of the committee members are all entered in the same hand as that of the report. Samuel Willis (1632–1709) was chosen a magistrate in Hartford shortly after his graduation from Harvard in 1653; he held the position until 1685. A sometime commissioner to the United Colonies of New England and later an assistant to the Connecticut General Court, he was also actively engaged in trade, frequently traveling to the West Indies. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 1:323–25.
38. Rev. Samuel Stone (1602–1663). In 1637 he negotiated with Natives to purchase the Connecticut land that became Hartford, where he was minister until his death. Allen Tolman and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography (New york, 1957) (hereafter DAB).
39. Rev. Samuel Hooker (1635–1697), son of the famous Rev. Thomas Hooker, founder and first pastor of Hartford. Samuel preached in Plymouth Colony in about 1657; in 1661 he declined the pastorate of Springfield in favor of that of Farmington, Connecticut, where he remained until his death. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:348–52.
40. A lieutenant in the Hartford militia, John Allen was nominated for the magistracy in October 1661 and elected in May 1662. Trumbull, Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, 1:373, 378.
41. Rev. John Davenport (1597–1670) was vicar of St. Stephen’s, London, when John Cotton Sr. fled his parish in 1632. The elder Cotton apparently stayed with Davenport while arranging transport for himself and his wife, John Jr.’s mother. Davenport emigrated five years later, in time to participate in the Antinomian controversy. He left Boston in 1638 to be pastor of New Haven. He strenuously opposed both the 1662 synod’s recommendations (dubbed the “Half Way Covenant” by later historians) and the 1665 union with Connecticut. His controversial return to Boston as the fourth pastor of First Church in 1668 led to the withdrawal of a group of members who then founded Third Church (Old South) DAB.
42. Not found.
43. Samuel Streete (c. 1635–1717) had not yet finished his degree at Harvard at this time but was of an age not to be styled the “Sir” customarily applied to younger matriculating students. Following his graduation in 1664 he taught the Hopkins Grammar School in Hartford and was ordained pastor of the Wallingford church in or about 1674. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:160–62.
44. “Up to that point.”
45. Samuel Hooker.
46. Origen of Alexandria (c. 185–253), a Greek Christian father, who supposedly asserted the ultimate probable salvation of all souls, including those of the fallen angels.
47. “The obstacle.”
48. Edmund Toolie or Tooly of New Haven (d. 1685). Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:312.
49. Jacob Moline of New Haven.
50. “Again, hail.”
51. John Winthrop Jr. (1606–1676), eldest son of Gov. John Winthrop of Massachusetts Bay, was named governor of the Connecticut plantations by founders lords Saye and Sele and Lord Brooke in 1635. After some years of moving among Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Haven, he settled permanently in Hartford after being elected governor in 1657. He served in that office continually until his death. On a mission to England from 1661 to 1663, Winthrop was made a member of the prestigious Royal Society and won a surprisingly liberal charter for Connecticut that annexed the New Haven colony. DAB.
52. Two or three words crossed out.
53. Probably Matthew Allyn, a magistrate and moderator of the General Assembly. Trumbull, Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, 1:425.
54. Capt. John Talcot of Hartford was made Major of the Hartford County militias. George M. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War (1906; reprint, Baltimore, Md., 2000), 467.
55. Possibly James Richards of Hartford, merchant and Commissioner to the United Colonies of New England. Henry R. Stiles, The History of Ancient Wethersfield, Connecticut (New york, 1904), 1:291.
56. Probably Joseph Mygatt or Mygate of Hartford, who frequently served as a juryman for Connecticut’s Particular Court. Records of the Particular Court of Connecticut, 20–199 passim.
57. Winthrop Jr. married his second wife, Elizabeth Reade, in 1635. DAB.
58. Massachusetts Bay.
59. Four or five words crossed out.
60. Winthrop Jr.’s eldest daughter, Elizabeth, married Rev. Antipas Newman of Wenham, Massachusetts, in 1658. Robert C. Black III, The Younger John Winthrop (New york and London, 1966), 187–88.
61. Bryan Rosseter, Cotton’s father-in-law. See the letter of 24 September from Bryan Rosseter, below.
62. Despite whatever help Winthrop may have provided, Boston’s First Church excommunicated Cotton for “lascivious uncleane practices with three women and his horrid lying to hide his sinne.” Humiliated, Cotton made a “penitential acknowledgment openly confessing his sinnes” and was reinstated to church membership five weeks later. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts 39 (1961): 60–61.
63. The Connecticut General Assembly met at Hartford on 13 October 1664. Trumbull, Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, 1:431.
64. Cotton’s restoration to the Boston church apparently came with the condition that he make every sincere effort to mend fences in Connecticut.
65. Literally “under the seal.” Cotton probably means that he has learned of rumors to the effect.
66. Samuel Wells.
67. Len Travers, “The Missionary Journal of John Cotton, Jr., 1666–1678,” Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society 109 (1999): 52–101.
68. Bryan (bray) Rosseter (d. 1672), Cotton’s father-in-law, was among the first of the English from Massachusetts Bay to settle the Connecticut colony in 1636; here he served as a magistrate and recorder until 1652. His grandson Josiah Cotton wrote that Rosseter had a degree in “Physick” and that he was also a feisty character. When he first brought his family to Guilford, “it was under the Government of New-Haven,” and not liking “some Proceedings that were very rigid & arbitrary,” he signed a petition to the King for a union with Connecticut. “In which (altho lawfull for every subject) his House was beset by a Company of armed men Who surrounded the House day & night, But being a Man of good Courage he stood upon his Guard, till he made his Escape to Hartford.” When Rosseter returned to Guilford in 1664, boisterously confident of Connecticut’s consolidation, John Davenport and Nicholas Streete of New Haven complained that he “hath been long, and still is a man of a turbulent, Restless, factious spiritt.” He died in Guilford on 30 September 1672. “Memoirs of Prince’s Subscribers,” New England Historical and Genealogical Register (hereafter NEHGR) 9 (1855): 336–37; Josiah Cotton, Manuscript “Account of the Cotton Family,” 17–18; Isabel MacBeath Calder, ed., Letters of John Davenport, Puritan Divine (New Haven, 1937), 237.
69. Ps. 39:11: “When thou with rebukes dost correct man for iniquity, thou makest his beauty to consume away like a moth: surely every man is vanity. Selah.”
70. See Job 2:11–13.
71. Ps. 39:12–13: “Hear my prayer, O LORD, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears: for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were. O spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go hence, and be no more.”
72. Isa. 22:4: “Therefore said I, Look away from me: I will weep bitterly, labor not to comfort me, because of the spoiling of the daughter of my people.”
73. That is, Joanna’s younger sister Sarah.
74. Joanna’s mother, Elizabeth.
75. This was apparently Sarah’s daughter.
76. Josias, or Josiah, Rosseter (d. 1716), Joanna’s brother, became a magistrate and recorder like his father and a member of the upper house of the Connecticut Assembly from 1701 to 1711. “Memoirs of Prince’s Subscribers,” 337. See the letter of 14 February 1683.
77. Ruth 1:20: “And she said unto them, Call me not Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.”
78. Allen Tolman and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography (New york, 1957) (hereafter DAB), s.v. “Mather, Richard.”
79. Mal. 3:6: “For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.”
80. A line and a half crossed out.
81. Cotton’s sister Maria (1642–1714) married Increase Mather (1639–1723) in 1662.
82. Lionel Lockyer (1600–1672) was famed in his day as an apothecary and physician, especially for the supposed efficacy of his cure-all pills, sold in latten boxes of about 100 pills each. In support of (and to market) the product, he wrote An Advertisement, Concerning Those Most Excellent Pills Called, Piluæ Radiis Solis Extractæ, Being an Universal Medicine (1664). It is not clear whether Cotton (or his wife) acquired the book or the pills themselves, but clearly Lockyer’s fame had reached across the Atlantic. His tomb at Southwark Cathederal, featuring a sculpture of a reclining Lockyer and an inscription of notably bad verse, remained a favorite of monument tourists through the nineteenth century (http://www.southwark.anglican.org/cathedral/tour/lockyer.htm); see also Charles J. S. Thompson, The Quacks of Old London (London, 1928).
83. A close-woven ribbon or braid made with gold, silver, or silk threads and used for trimming garments.
84. Most likely the premises of Joshua Atwater (d. 1676), “a busy trader” from New Haven who moved to Boston in 1659. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1990), 1:76.
85. Rev. Noah Newman (d. 1678), son of Rev. Samuel Newman of Rehoboth, assumed his late father’s ministry in 1668. George H. Tilton, A History of Rehoboth, Massachusetts: Its History for 275 Years 1643–1918 (Boston, 1918), 58, 88.
86. Nemasket, or Namassaket, in what is now Middleborough, Massachusetts.
87. Eliz. Bullocke, possibly Elizabeth Billington, second wife of Richard Bullocke or Bulluk, married 21 September 1660. Samuel N. Arnold, comp., Vital Records of Rehoboth, 1642–1895 (Providence, R.I., 1897), 67.
88. John Miles or Myles (c.1621–1683), “a learned preacher of the Church of England,” took advantage of the atmosphere of religious experimentation and, sometime during Cromwell’s protectorate, became a Baptist and gathered a following. Ejected from his place after the Restoration, in 1662 he and some supporters emigrated to Dorchester in Massachusetts Bay. Probably realizing there would be no tolerance there for his views, Miles moved to Rehoboth. He apparently did some preaching in the area but in 1667 removed with some likeminded people to the western part of the town (now Swansea) to form a separate, Baptist worship with himself as pastor. After the destruction of Swansea in King Philip’s War, Miles established a Baptist gathering in Boston but returned to his rebuilt town in 1680 and died there three years later. Otis Olney Wright, ed., History of Swansea, MA 1667–1917 (Swansea, Mass., 1917), 197–98. See the letter of 6 January 1685.
89. Probably James Brown (1623–1710), a prominent resident and son of one of the town’s original proprietors, who was Rev. Miles’s brother-in-law, a founding member of Miles’s church, and an assistant to the Plymouth General Court. Wright, History of Swansea, 200.
90. At this time the Plymouth election court was held in the first week of June.
91. Jarret ingraham (d. 1717) lived in Rehoboth as early as 1665, when his child Mary was born. Arnold, Vital Records of Rehoboth, 653, 840.
92. Hannah Howland (b. c. 1637), the sixth child of Mayfower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley, married Jonathan Bosworth in 1661. It is probably to her that Cotton refers in an entry in the Plymouth church records for 1670: “A child of this chh who had bin here baptized, removing to Swanzey was rebaptized by the Pastor there, which the chh being informed of, did unanimously declare it to be a matter of offence, & sent letters to those concerned in that action to signify that such a practice would be a barre to our Ecclesiasticall communion & desired they would doe soe noe more.” Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 310–11; Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 146.
93. Zachariah Eedy married Allice Paddock on 7 May 1663. Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed., Records of Plymouth Colony, 13 vols. (Boston, 1855–59), 8:23.
94. Exod. 8:25–26: “And Pharaoh called for Moses and for Aaron, and said, Go ye, sacrifce to your God in the land. And Moses said, It is not meet so to do; for we shall sacrifce the abomination of the Egyptians to the LORD our God: lo, shall we sacrifce the abomination of the Egyptians before their eyes, and will they not stone us?”
96. Thomas Prence (c. 1600–1673) was governor of Plymouth Colony from the death of William Bradford in 1657 to his own death on 29 March 1673. CSM, 22:147; Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 340–41.
97. Two or three words illegible.
98. Henry Newman (b. 1670) graduated from Harvard College in 1687 and was the librarian there from 1690 to 1693. Sometime after 1695, he moved to London, where he lived with the Duke of Somerset’s family and served as the agent for both Harvard and the New Hampshire colony. He was also a corresponding secretary for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 3:389–94.
99. In the Plymouth Church records for the year 1670, Cotton wrote,: “Some persons, a brother & 2 sisters that had formerly walked with his chh being now removed & not owning their chh-relation, the chh agreed & it was openly declared by the Elder in the name of the chh, that wee esteemed them noe longer to be members of us.” CSM, 22:146.
100. Not found.
101. Heb. 6:1–2: “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.”
102. 1 Cor. 10:32: “Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God.”
103. Roger Williams (c. 1603–1683), the famous founder of Providence Plantation. His brief and troubled career as teacher to the Salem church ended with his expulsion from Massachusetts in 1635. Williams traveled to the head of Narragansett Bay and negotiated with Narragansett sachems for land on which to settle. Other dissidents followed and formed the colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, whose autonomy the neighboring New England colonies frequently threatened. Time and again, Williams proved instrumental in defending the colony from its detractors. DAB.
104. Glenn W. LaFantasie included this letter in his edition of The Correspondence of Roger Williams, 2 vols. (Providence, R.I., 1988), 2:627–33. While the letter appears in the present edition with some changes, these are chiefly matters of style. See LaFantasie’s notes for an excellent analysis of Williams’s more confusing passages and references.
105. Not found.
106. A reference to David’s self-abasement in 1 Sam. 24:14: “After whom is the king of Israel come out? after whom dost thou pursue? after a dead dog, after a flea.”
107. Cotton’s father had been one of those who attempted to turn Williams from his “errors” before his banishment. The elder Cotton remembered that he “spent a great part of the Summer [of 1635] in seeking by word and writing” to dissuade Williams from his defance of the Massachusetts General Court. Ultimately, Cotton and the rest of the Bay Colony ministers approved the court’s sentence of banishment later that year. Cotton and Williams’s correspondence continued for a short while afterward but broke down and ceased after some mutual recriminations. Cotton’s last, admonishing letter to Williams found its way into print in 1643 (apparently without Cotton’s approval), arousing Williams to his own defense in Mr. Cotton’s Letter Lately Printed (1644), then to an attack on the “New England Way” in The Bloudy Tenet of Persecution of the same year. Cotton countered with A Reply to Mr. Williams and The Bloudy Tenet Washed, published together in 1647. Williams made the final thrust with The Bloody Tenet Yet More Bloody in 1652, the year Cotton died. The initial volleys in this war of print debated the justice of Williams’s banishment, but Williams quickly raised the stakes, blasting what he considered the orthodox New England colonies’ intolerance, the impurity of Puritan churches, and the inappropriate partnership of church and state in New England. The language of the letters is often personal and acrimonious. For full texts of these works, see James Hammond Trumbull et al, eds., The Complete Writings of Roger Williams, 7 vols. (New york, 1963), vols. 1–4.
108. Williams’s brackets; letter from Winthrop not found.
109. Apparently Cotton was upset by Williams’s final entry in the debate with his father, The Bloody Tenet Yet More Bloody, citing “wrong” done to his father in print. However, Williams’s letter suggests that Cotton may not even have read The Bloody Tenet Yet More Bloody until recently.
110. The reaction of the House of Commons to Williams’s Bloudy Tenet of Persecution was swift; on 9 August 1644 the House ordered the pamphlet to be publicly burned. James E. Ernst, “Roger Williams and the English Revolution,” Rhode Island Historical Society Collections 24 (1931): 12.
111. John Owen (1616–1683) left Oxford University in 1637 rather than submit to Archbishop Laud’s demands for clerical conformity. He wrote a blistering critique of the Anglican Church, Display of Arminianism, and became an independent in thought and practice, even tending toward antinomianism. He served in several civil offices during Cromwell’s Protectorate and pleaded for religious liberty after the Restoration. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols. (London, 1885–1900) (hereafter DNB).
112. Charles I. As LaFantasie points out, it is difficult to understand how Charles could have agreed with Williams’s convictions, if indeed he actually read them. LaFantasie, Correspondence of Roger Williams, 2:632.
114. Daniel Cawdrey (1588–1664), a nonconformist cleric, inclined toward the Presbyterian party during the English Civil War and signed a petition condemning any harm to the captured Charles I. Rewarded with the offer of a bishopric after the Restoration, however, he declined, and he refused to submit to the 1662 Act of Uniformity. Despising both Anglicans and Independents, Cawdrey wrote two pamphlets attacking the liberal tenets of John Owen. DNB.
115. Isa. 64:8: “But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.”
116. Cotton had apparently seen a letter from Williams to Gov. Thomas Prence and Maj. John Mason dated 22 June 1670, in which Williams offered to debate three points in Hartford, Boston, and Plymouth: “First that forc’t Worshipp stincks in Gods Nostrills. 2 That it denies Christ Jesus yet to be come, and makes the Church yet National, figurative and Ceremoniall. 3 That in these flames about Religion, as his Matie his Father, and Grandfather have yielded, there is no other prudent Christian Way of preserving peace in the World but by permission of differing Consciences.” LaFantasie, Correspondence of Roger Williams, 2:617.
117. Not found.
118. Possibly a reference to Thomas Prence’s reply to Williams (of July 1670?), printed in LaFantasie, Correspondence of Roger Williams, 2:625–26. If so, Williams interpreted Prence’s response oddly.
119. Failing to win ordination as pastor of the church in Salem, Williams moved to Plymouth in late 1631. Recounting the year 1633, William Bradford summed up Williams’s experience at Plymouth: “Mr Roger Williams (a man godly and zealous, having many precious parts, but very unsettled in judgemente) came over first to the Massachusets, but upon some discontente left that place, and came hither, (wher he was friendly entertained, according to their poore abilitie,) and exercised his gifts among them, and after some time was admitted a member of the church; and his teaching well approoved, for the benefite wherof I still blese God, and am very thankfull to him, even for his sharpest admonitions and reproufs, so farr as they agreed with truth. He this year began to fall into some strang opinions, and from opinion to practise; which caused some controversie betweene the church and him, and in the end some discontente on his part, by occasion wherof he left them some thing abruptly. Yet after wards sued for his dismission to the church of Salem, which was granted, with some caution to them concerning him, and what care they ought to have of him.” William Bradford, History of Plymouth Plantation, 2 vols. (New york, 1968), 161–63. Another Plymouth eyewitness added detail to Bradford’s restrained account, asserting that Williams actively recruited adherents to his “singular opinions,” some of whom were also dismissed from the church and left with him. Nathaniel Morton, New England’s Memorial (1854, reprint, Bowie, Md., 1997), 102.
120. Hugh Peter (1598–1660), the famous Puritan divine, came to Massachusetts Bay in 1635 and became pastor of the Salem church after Williams left. Returning to England in 1641, he became a chaplain of the Puritan armies in England and Ireland and the personal chaplain to Oliver Cromwell. He urged the trial and execution of Charles I in 1649, and for this he was tried and executed after the Restoration. American National Biography, ed. John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (New york and Oxford, 1999) (hereafter ANB).
121. A reference to Rev. 11:3: “And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.”
122. First Church, or Old Church, was gathered at Charlestown in 1630 and relocated to Boston that same year. It was situated at Cornhill, opposite the Town House.
123. Third Church was formed in 1669 by a group that split off from First Church over the controversial 1662 synod. It was known locally as South Church, later as Old South Church.
124. Thomas Cushman (1608–1691) became Ruling Elder of the Plymouth church in 1649, succeeding the venerable William Brewster. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 276–77.
125. Mary Chilton (1607–1679) arrived in New England on board the Mayfower in 1620. She married John Winslow (1597–1674), who arrived the year after. They removed to Boston in 1655. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 262, 374.
126. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1856–61) (hereafter PCR), 5:74–75.
128. Mount Hope, or Montaup, now in Bristol, Rhode Island, was the home of Metacomet (Philip).
129. Maj. Josiah Winslow (c. 1629–1680), eldest surviving son of Edward Winslow, founding member and governor of Plymouth Colony. Josiah served as Plymouth Colony Assistant (1657–1673) and as Commissioner for the United Colonies (1658–1672). In 1657 the General Court named him “Commander in Chief,” or Major, of the colony’s militia companies. DAB.
130. Nathaniel Morton (c. 1613–1685), the nephew of Gov. William Bradford, became Secretary (later Clerk) of the General Court of Plymouth, a post he held until his death. His access to colony records, and his uncle’s papers, facilitated his publication of New England’s Memorial in 1669. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 330–31.
131. See the letter from Hannah Johnson and Mary Blake of 20 February 1671, above.
132. See the letter from Hannah Johnson and Mary Blake of 20 February 1671, above.
133. Probably Josias Wampatuck, a Massachusett sachem living at the Mattakeesett Ponds in Plymouth Colony (modern-day Pembroke, Massachusetts). Although his mother had received a Christian burial, Josias was reluctant to embrace the new religion; even the “Apostle to the Indians,” John Eliot, had been rebuffed by Wampatuck. In 1669, Josias led a Native contingent against the Mohawks and was killed in battle. Russell Herbert Gardner, “Last Royal Dynasty of the Massachusetts,” Bulletin of the Massachusetts Archaeological Society 57 (1996): 19.
134. By the time Simon Bradstreet (1604–1697) retired from public office in 1692, he had amassed the longest record of public service in colonial New England history. He arrived with the Winthrop fleet in 1630, as secretary of the Massachusetts Bay Company, and after 1636 was elected magistrate every year except those of the Dominion of New England. He lived in Ipswich during most of this time but moved to Boston in 1672, after the death of his wife Anne, the famous poet. In 1678 he was deputy governor, and he became governor the next year. In the New England political spectrum he was a moderate Puritan and was frequently criticized for his moderation. When royal officials arrived after the suspension of the Massachusetts charter in 1684, hard-line Puritans denounced him for his apparent obsequiousness, but Bradstreet refused to serve in the Dominion government. It was to Bradstreet that colony leaders turned after the overthrow of Gov. Andros in 1689; he served as interim governor until the arrival of William Phipps in 1692. ANB.
135. Hezekiah Usher (d. 1676), merchant of Boston, was one of the founders of the Old South Church. He had been a selectman for the town since 1659 and was a member of the prestigious Artillery Company.
136. Thomas Danforth (1623–1699), emigrated to Massachusetts in 1634 and settled in Cambridge. He was a commissioner of the United Colonies, assistant to the General Court 1659–1679, and deputy governor when he sat on the court of Oyer and Terminer during the 1692 Salem witchcraft trials. ANB.
137. Increase Mather (1639–1723), the famous Puritan divine, was Cotton’s step-brother and brother-in-law, having married Maria Cotton (b. 1642) in 1662. After taking his degree at Harvard in 1656, Increase traveled to Dublin, where his older brother Samuel was minister. He took his MA at Trinity College and preached at several places in England and on the island of Guernsey. He rejected the conformity required after the Restoration and returned to New England in 1661. He was besieged with offers for employment, but he accepted a position at Second Church in Boston’s North End and was ordained there in 1664. He initially opposed the baptismal practices advocated by the synod of 1662, but gradually came to tolerate the measures. He was prone to illness from his youth, and his son Cotton described a fever in 1669 as so complicated by “that Comprehensive Mischief which they call, The Hypocondriacs Affection, that he lay confined all the Winter.” Active in religious and intellectual pursuits and a prolifc writer, he also played a crucial role in colonial politics. When Crown authorities demanded the return of the Massachusetts charter in 1683, Mather exhorted the Boston freemen to instruct their deputies to the General Court to reject the order. When the charter was annulled, Mather was chosen an agent to present colony grievances to the court of James II. After the 1688 revolution, Mather worked to get a new charter from William and Mary, a charter that ultimately subsumed Plymouth Colony under Massachusetts. Mather was allowed to nominate the first governor under the new charter, the Maine-born adventurer Sir William Phipps. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:410–70.
138. This appears to refer to Rowland Cotton (1667–1722), the dutiful second son of John Cotton and Joanna Rosseter, who was nearly four years old at this time. If so, the “griefs” are presumably connected to some childhood malady. A graduate of Harvard in 1685, Rowland accepted the call of the Sandwich church in 1692 over the invitation of Dedham, in part “being willing to live near his parents who were then at Plymouth.” Adapting to the local religious environment, he preached several lectures to the town’s Quakers when their speaker died and also preached once a month to nearby Natives, whose language he learned. Rowland achieved the worldly success that had eluded his father. Despite his large family and modest salary, “his excellent wife’s industry,” combined with timely legacies and prudent management, allowed his family to live in moderate wealth, “much of a gentleman in his garb and customs.” Perhaps in consequence of his lifestyle, he became fat and gouty in his last years. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:323–26.
139. Line added by Prince.
140. Thomas Walley (1618–1679) was “driven from the exercise of his ministry in London” after the Restoration, according to Cotton Mather, and arrived in New England about 1663. Shortly thereafter he was ordained minister of the church at Barnstable, which had been “miserably broken with divisions” begun by Quaker-inspired dissent in the mid 1650s. Walley seems to have been temperamentally suited to the task of healing the wounds in the religious community. Mather reports that he possessed a “charming wisdom,” a proper Christian humility, a capacity for independent thinking and a “well-bounded toleration” of “those that peaceably differ from the generality of God’s people in lesser things.” Walley was present at Cotton’s ordination and delivered “a solemne Prayer” for the occasion. Cotton Mather, Magnalia Christi Americana, or The Ecclesiastical History of New-England (1852, reprint, New York, 1967) 599–601; CSM, 22:144.
141. John Cotton Sr., The Way of the Churches of Christ in New England (London, 1645).
142. A reference to Thomas Hooker, A Survey of the Summe of Church-Discipline (London, 1648).
143. 2 Thess. 3:14–15: “And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.”
144. The word at the end of this mutilated part of the letter is probably a version of “uncleanness.” Since the previous October, the General Court had tried two cases of adultery and four cases of fornication, two of these last at the court held only four days prior to this memorandum. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 5:81–84, 86–87.
145. The Old College building at Harvard was so decrepit by 1671 that the college governors decided to begin a subscription drive for a new building. The appeal went out to every town in the Bay Colony but apparently was extended to other New England colonies as well. Predictably, perhaps, Plymouth’s response was meager; though several towns pledged funds, there is no record that the college ever received them. By the end of the year the drive had raised £2280 in pledges. New College, or Old Harvard Hall, was sufficiently finished by the summer of 1677 to be used for Commencement. Samuel Eliot Morison, Harvard College in the Seventeenth Century (Cambridge, Mass., 1936) 2:376–77, 423–25.
146. Morton left out the month, but it is probably July. The Plymouth General Court met on 5 July in 1672, and a letter from that court to the Commissioners for the United Colonies of New England dated 9 September 1672 declares “there is alreddy a contribution made” to the college “according to our low condition.” Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 10:354–55.
147. The writer consistently uses the letter w, when non-initial, as a double v.
149. Thomas Crosby, a member of the “search committee” and whose signature appears below, had been ministering to Eastham but had not been ordained. He later turned up as “merchant” in neighboring Harwich. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 64; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:370–79.
150. Samuel Treat began preaching in the town that year. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 208.
151. John Freeman (1627–1719) was a prominent resident of Eastham and of Plymouth Colony. He came to New England with his father in 1635 and married Mercy, the daughter of Gov. Thomas Prence, in 1650. By the time of this letter he had been a selectman for nine years and also served intermittently as a deputy to the General Court, assistant governor, and in a variety of town and colony offices. In King Philip’s War he was a captain, afterwards rising to the rank of major. Mary Walton Ferris, comp., Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines: A Memorial Volume Containing the American Ancestry of Mary Beman (Gates) Dawes (private printing, 1931), 2:356–61.
152. Daniel Cole (1614–1694) was one of three brothers who emigrated to New England in 1633 and settled in Plymouth Colony. At this point he was both an Eastham selectman and a deputy to the General Court. Frank T. Cole, The Early Genealogies of the Cole Families in America (Columbus, Oh., 1887), 32.
153. Samuel Freeman (1638–1712), no relation to John, was deacon of the church. The American Genealogist 11:73–80, 171–79.
154. The day and month are obliterated. Beneath, in what appears to be Thomas Prince’s hand, is the date “July 31.”
155. Not found.
156. Perhaps one of the published sermons and discourses of John Tillinghast (1604–1655), English preacher and Fifth Monarchist. DNB.
157. Biblical reference superscribed by Cotton. 2 Pet. 1:12 reads: “Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth.”
158. Zech. 14:20: “In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD; and the pots in the LORD’S house shall be like the bowls before the altar.”
159. Rev. George Shove (1634–1687), born in Dorchester, was ordained third minister of the church at Taunton in 1665. He was brother-in-law to another Cotton correspondent, Noah Newman, having married his sister Hopestill Newman (1641–1674). Samuel Hopkins Emery, History of Taunton, Massachusetts, from its Settlement to the Present Time (Syracuse, N.Y., 1893), 1:183–86; Tilton, History of Rehoboth, 49.
160. “To the church of Christ at Taunton.”
161. “Grace, Mercy, and Peace from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ be multiplied,” a standard greeting for church correspondence adopted from the New Testament epistles.
162. William Stoughton (1631–1701) became one of the most powerful men in late seventeenth-century Massachusetts. His family emigrated to the colony in its earliest years (it is not clear whether William was born in England or America) and settled in Dorchester. In 1644 his father returned to England to fght with the army of Parliament, and after William graduated from Harvard College in 1650, he followed him there. William studied at Oxford for a ministry in England but lost his support soon after the Restoration. In 1662 he returned to Massachusetts where, despite a talent for preaching and some offers of a ministerial position, he pursued a life as a landowner and magistrate. He was an assistant at the General Court from 1671 to 1686, served as a commissioner for the United Colonies, and when the Dominion of New England was formed, held positions in the unpopular government. This last notwithstanding, he survived the downfall of the Dominion, and under the 1691 royal charter government was named lieutenant-governor and chief justice of Massachusetts. To most scholars today he is notorious as the chief justice of the Court of Oyer et Terminer during the Salem witchcraft trials, of which he was an unrepentant supporter. He continued as lieutenant-governor until his death in 1701. ANB.
163. Thomas Hinckley (1621–1706), last governor of Plymouth Colony, emigrated from his native Kent to join his father, Samuel, at Barnstable, on Cape Cod, in 1639. He became a deputy to the General Court in 1645 and an assistant from 1658. In June 1681 he was chosen governor of the colony after the death of Josiah Winslow, and he served in that capacity until Plymouth’s absorption by Massachusetts Bay in 1692. As governor, he strongly supported missionary efforts in the colony. Edward Randolph (see 20 December 1679) characterized him as “a rigid independent” in terms of his religious temperament. Certainly he was no friend to Quakers and other dissidents in the colony: he strongly advocated, and enforced, a 1677 law establishing a general tax for the support of properly ordained ministers. This policy, and his position as governor, were suspended during the years of the Dominion of New England (1686–1689). Hinckley accepted a position in the Dominion government but resumed his gubernatorial duties when the Dominion collapsed and Gov. Andros was deposed. Hinckley allowed himself and Plymouth Colony to be drawn by Massachusetts Bay into a series of failed operations against the “Eastern” (Maine) Indians and Canada in the opening years of King William’s War. The high taxes levied to support the war led to a breakdown in colony authority, as strapped towns refused to pay their assessments or carry out directives of the General Court. Unable to marshal enough support for a new colony charter, Hinckley became resigned to Plymouth’s absorption by Massachusetts, made official by that province’s charter, 7 October 1691. He continued to serve as a council member in the new government and died at Barnstable in 1706. Jacob Bailey Moore, Lives of the Governors of New Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay; From the Landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth in 1620, to the Union of the Two Colonies in 1692 (Boston, 1851), 201–32.
164. Daniel Gookin (1612–1687) settled in Virginia as early as 1630 and later served in the House of Burgesses. A zealous Puritan in a predominantly Anglican colony, Gookin emigrated to Massachusetts in 1644. He became a Deputy for Cambridge to the General Court in 1649, was a magistrate (1652–1686), and superintendent of Natives living in Massachusetts “praying towns” from 1656 until his death. DAB.
165. Gookin copied this letter, in parts, in chapters 8 and 9 of his manuscript “Indians Converted or Historicall collections of the indians in New england,” dated 1674, which was first printed as “The Historical Collections of the Indians of New England,” in Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society (1792). In Gookin’s manuscript, the letter appears in segments on three different pages, but Gookin identifies all as bearing the same date. The segments appear here in the order in which Gookin copied them. The original letter has not been found.
166. Rev. Richard Bourne (c. 1610–1682), minister of Sandwich, was an active missionary to Natives on Cape Cod, and served as pastor of the Native congregation at Mashpee. Mary Farwell Ayer, “Richard Bourne, Missionary to the Mashpee Indians,” New England Historic and Genealogical Register 62 (1908): 139–43.
167. Kitteaumut was the area southward from modern-day Manomet, in Plymouth, to Buzzard’s Bay. William T. Davis, Ancient Landmarks of Plymouth (Boston, 1883), 152.
168. Gookin’s margin note reads “10 of them can read Indian.”
169. Namassaket, Ketchiqut/Kuhtiticut/Titicut, and Assowampsett were neighboring Native communities in what are now Middleborough and Lakeville, about halfway between Plymouth and Philip’s village at Mount Hope. Thomas Weston, The History of the Town of Middleborough, Massachusetts (Boston and New York, 1906), 18.
170. See the letter of Richard Bourne to Daniel Gookin, 1 September 1674, also in chapter 8 of Gookin’s manuscript.
171. Mamanuett was a sachem of Sakonet, modern-day Little Compton, Rhode Island. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 5:224–25.
172. Probably Coksit, or Coakset, in modern-day Westport, Massachusetts.
173. The Native Acushnet was located at the head of what is now called the Acushnet River in southeastern Massachusetts, currently the border between New Bedford and the town of Acushnet.
174. Modern-day Chappaquiddick, an islet at the east end of Martha’s Vineyard separated from the larger island by a narrow channel.
175. An area on the eastern shore of Edgartown Great Pond.
176. An area around what is now known as Sengekontacket Pond, between Edgartown and Oak Bluffs.
177. Takemmy is in modern-day West Tisbury.
178. Nashuakemmuk and Talhanio are locales in modern-day Chilmark, near Menemsha.
179. John Eliot (1604–1690), minister of Roxbury, was New England’s most famous missionary and the publisher of numerous texts in the Massachusett dialect. DAB. See Eliot’s letter to Cotton of April 1680.
180. Hiacoomes (d. c.1690), the first and most famous of the Reverend Thomas Mayhew’s converts, lived near Great Harbor (Edgartown) when the English arrived there in 1642. He learned to read English and began preaching to other Natives in 1646. Hiacoomes continued preaching after his mentor’s death in 1657, and when the Native church organized in 1670, John Eliot and John Cotton ordained him pastor and teacher. Experience Mayhew, Indian Converts or Some Account of the Lives and Dying Speeches of a Considerable Number of the Christian Indians of Martha’s Vineyard in New England (London, 1728), 1–12.
181. John Toquenosh (Tockinosh, d. 23 Jan. 1683/4) became teaching elder of the first Native church in 1670. A persuasive preacher, “he was reckoned to exceed Hiacoomes both in his natural and acquired abilities.” Mayhew, Indian Converts, 14–16.
182. John Nahnosoo, “one of the first called among the Indians” of Martha’s Vineyard, was ruling elder of the 1670 Native church, staying with the Vineyard contingent after the church split. Mayhew, Indian Converts, 17–18.
183. When the Martha’s Vineyard Natives formed their first church in 1670, they chose Joshua Momatchegin (d. c. 1703) to be their ruling elder. When the church later split between the converts of Chappaquiddick and of Edgartown, Momatchegin stayed with the former. According to Experience Mayhew, he struggled valiently, but futilely, to arrest the declension and drunkenness that descended on both the English and the Natives on the islet in the 1690s. Mayhew, Indian Converts, 34.
184. Thomas Mayhew Sr. (1593–1682) became the sole English proprietor of Martha’s Vineyard in the early 1640s. After his son, the Reverend Thomas Mayhew (b. 1621) was lost at sea in 1657, Thomas Sr. attempted to carry on his son’s missionary work to the island Natives.
185. Mashpee, on Cape Cod.
186. Josiah Winslow became governor of Plymouth Colony in 1673 upon the death of Gov. Thomas Prence.
187. Gookin identifies John Gibbs’s Native name as Assasamoogh. Gookin, “Indians Converted,” Massachusetts Historical Society.
188. Caleb also taught school for the Christian Indians of Nantucket. “He earnestly desires to learn to read and understand English; and entreated me to procure him an English bible, which accordingly he had by order of the Commissioners.” “Indians Converted,” Massachusetts Historical Society.
189. Not found.
190. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1855–61), 5:117, 168.
191. Douglas Edward Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk: New England in King Philip’s War (New York, 1958), 36–43.
193. Coksit, or Coakset, corresponds to the area around modern-day Westport, Massachusetts, and Little Compton, Rhode Island.
197. 19 July.
198. I.e., advance guard.
199. Pocasset Swamp.
201. Drave (i.e., “drove”).
202. Captain Samuel Mosely (1641–1680) commanded a company of volunteers recruited in Boston that included captured pirates and assorted n’er-do-wells. Though an effective fighting force, Mosely and his company soon became notorious for their brutal treatment of Natives, regardless of their loyalties. Jenny Hale Pulsipher, “Massacre at Hurtleberry Hill: Christian Indians and English Authority in Metacom’s War,” The William and Mary Quarterly 53 (1996): 459–86.
203. Daniel Henchman (d. 1685) first appears in Massachusetts records of 1666. A year later, he helped Daniel Gookin and others establish the plantation at Quinsigamond Ponds (Worcester). Made a freeman of the colony in 1672, he was appointed captain of the Fifth Boston Company in May 1675. He died 13 October 1685 in Worcester. George M. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War (1906; reprint, Baltimore, Md., 2000), 47–48.
204. Jer. 9:12: “Who is the wise man, that may understand this? and who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord hath spoken, that he may declare it, for what the land perisheth and is burned up like a wilderness, that none passeth through?”
205. Quaker dissidents first appeared in Plymouth Colony in the mid 1650s. The colony government enthusiastically participated in their subsequent persecutions until it was restrained by the restored King Charles II in 1661. Thereafter, Quakers found havens on Cape Cod and in the western towns of Plymouth Colony. They made themselves no more popular when, at the beginning of the war, they claimed that English reverses and losses were God’s judgement for having previously persecuted them.
206. So it might have seemed to historically-minded settlers; fifty-five years after Plymoth’s founding, many of the leading lights of the colony’s early days were dead, elderly, or had moved away. Most recently, Gov. Thomas Prence, that “terror to the ungodly,” had passed away in 1673.
207. John Hull (1624–1683), silversmith and goldsmith, was one of Boston’s most esteemed citizens. He was appointed in 1652 to coin money for Massachusetts—the famous “pine tree” currency. A ship owner and substantial property holder, he was colony treasurer in 1676 and a member of the Court of Assistants from 1680–1683. His diaries are among the most valued personal papers of early New England history. DAB.
208. Not found.
209. James 5:14: “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.”
210. According to Walley’s will, Mrs. Clark’s Christian name was Sarah; no marriage record has yet come to hand. “The Island” frequently appears as shorthand for Rhode Island, certainly a place of religious “polutions” to Walley and Cotton, but considering Walley’s position on mid Cape Cod, he may mean the much closer island, Martha’s Vineyard.
211. Samuel Appleton (1624–1696) of Ipswich commanded English forces in the upper Connecticut River valley but lacked adequate numbers either to protect the western Massachusetts settlements or to prosecute an offensive war against the Natives. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 96–97; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 142–58. See the letter of 29 May 1695.
212. Captain Thomas Lathrop emigrated to Salem in 1634. He and eighty men were helping to evacuate the village of Deerfield when they were ambushed at Muddy Brook, five miles south of the village, on 18 September. Seventy-one soldiers and teamsters were killed, Lathrop among them. The stream was renamed Bloody Brook, the designation it bears today. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 88; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 133–41.
213. Major Robert Treat (c. 1622–1710) commanded Connecticut forces in the upper Connecticut River valley. DAB.
214. Mohegan Indians of Connecticut, allied with the English.
215. Quaboag, or Brookfield, was abandoned soon after a devastating attack and siege by Nipmuck Indians. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 81–84.
216. This is probably Cornelius Anderson, one of a number of Dutch privateers or pirates captured by Captain Mosely and reprieved in exchange for joining Mosely’s company to fight against the Wampanoag. Nathaniel Philbrick, Mayfower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War (New York, 2006), 238–39.
217. Massachusetts settlements in Maine came under attack beginning in September 1675. The colony government was forced to divert troops and supplies to that theater through 1677.
218. On 16 September 1676 the Massachusetts General Court gave the Council the discretion to dispose of all Native prisoners, advising that “such of them as shall appeare to have imbrued their hands in English blood should suffer death here, and not be transported into forreigne parts.” Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed., Records of the Governor and Company of the Massachusetts Bay in New England (1628–86), 6 vols. (Boston, 1853–54) (hereafter Mass Bay Recs), 5:115.
219. “Litle Jno Indian yt Came as a messengr from [blank] being prooved to be a murderer of the English in ye warr was Condemnd to be hangd & was executed accordingly [21 September 1675].” Records of the Court of Assistants of the Colony of the Massachusetts Bay 1630–1692, 3 vols. (Boston, 1901–28), 1:53. The Stoughton in question may be a relation of Nicholas Stoughton, who married Elizabeth Knapp in Taunton in 1673. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:214.
220. Rev. Zachariah Walker (1637–1700) was one of seventeen students who left Harvard College without a degree in 1655. He took up a ministry at Jamaica, Long Island, in 1662, but moved to Stratford, Connecticut, six years later. While in that place he married Joanna Cotton’s sister Susannah (b. 1652). The church in Stratford was divided into two factions; each was allowed its own minister. Walker was pastor for one of the parties, which eventually formed the town of Woodbury. Walker continued to minister at both places until 1678, when he moved permanently to Woodbury. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 1:567, 2:84–86.
221. Not found.
222. Joanna’s brother Josias Rosseter.
223. John Leverett (b. 1616), governor of Massachusetts from 1673 until his death in 1679. DAB.
224. Joanna gave birth to her eighth child, Josiah, 10 September 1675.
225. The Commissioners of the United Colonies elected Gov. Josiah Winslow to command the inter-colonial army that would invade the Narragansett country.
226. The war had gone badly for the English, and despite the fact that Christian Indians had fought with the colonists against Philip’s forces from the outset, by late summer English settlers were suspicious of Christian Indian loyalty. Instances of harassment, intimidation, and violence against these people increased ominously through the fall and winter of 1675–76.
227. Reference unclear.
228. Capt. Thomas Prentice of Cambridge (c. 1620–1709) commanded a troop of mounted soldiers in the Narragansett campaign. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 80.
229. Isaac Johnson of Roxbury (d. 1675) was captain of the Artillery Company of Boston in 1667 and commanded a company of Roxbury and Weymouth men in the Narragansett campaign. He was among the first to be killed in the attack on the Narragansett fort, falling just inside the obstacle-strewn entrance. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 159–61.
231. Pawtuxet was a settlement near the mouth of the river by the same name (see note 6, below).
232. Pomham was sachem of the Shawomet Indians, near modern-day Warwick, who had been tributaries to the Narragansetts. In 1643 Pomham submitted himself and his people to the authority of Massachusetts Bay in order to terminate his obligation to the Narragansetts. When the war came, however, he sided with his former overlords and was killed in battle 27 July 1676 near Dedham. Samuel G. Drake, Biography and History of the Indians of North America (Boston, 1837), book 3:75–76.
233. The Pawtuxet River flows easterly into Narragansett Bay between Providence and Warwick, Rhode Island.
234. Richard Smith kept a trading post at Wickford, on the western shore of Narragansett Bay south of Warwick. The colonial army used it as an advance base during the campaign. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 122.
235. Jireh Bull’s stone garrison house stood at Pettaquamscutt, on the western shore of Narragansett Bay. It was to have been a rendezvous for the colonial army but was destroyed by Indians on or just before 16 December. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 127.
236. Jonathan Barnes (1643–1714) inherited most of the considerable estate of his father, John Barnes, one of Plymouth’s few general merchants. Jonathan married Elizabeth Hedge (1647–1731) in 1665 and was elected constable of Plymouth in 1677. Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 665; Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 5:231.
237. Joshua Lamb (1642–1690), Roxbury merchant, owned lands in Roanoke, Virginia, which he had purchased from Sir William Berkley. Lamb married Mary Alcock (1652–1700) of Roxbury. Bowen, Early Rehoboth, 2:50; Clarence Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, 1865), 448.
238. Probably the preceding letter from Noah Newman.
239. Probably “squaw.”
240. Captain (later Major) William Bradford (1624–1705) of Marshfield, son of Plymouth Colony governor William Bradford, served as assistant for many years and commanded the Plymouth contingent during the campaign. See 5 July 1676.
241. William Wetherell was a sergeant in the Plymouth regiment’s second company. Peleg Sanford of Rhode Island later presented a bill to the Plymouth court for “8 yds of Duffle to Sergt. Witherly, James Bell and other Taunton men that came wounded to my house December 24th,” “cash to James Bell, to bear his charges home,” and “To Serg’t Witherell, James Bell & Joseph White for their diett lodging and attendance two of them for one month and one of them three weeks at 8s. per week.” Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 183, 427; Samuel Hopkins Emery, History of Taunton, Massachusetts, from its Settlement to the Present Time (Syracuse, N.y., 1893), 1:404.
242. Rev. John Holmes, minister of Duxbury (1658–1675), died 24 December 1675, remembered as “a godly man . . . efficacious in the great and honorable work of preaching the Gospel.” Justin Winsor, A History of the Town of Duxbury, Massachusetts, with Genealogical Registers (Boston, 1849) 178–79; E. Waldo Long, ed., The Story of Duxbury 1637–1937 (Duxbury, Mass., 1937), 45.
243. At their 2 November meeting, the Commissioners of the United Colonies urged the the constituent governments to appoint Thursday, 2 December “as a sollemne Day of Prayer and humilliation; to supplycat the Lords prdoning Mercye and Compasion towards his poore people; and for successe in our Indeavours for the Repelling the Rage of the enimy.” Nathaniel Shurtleff, ed., Records of Plymouth Colony, 13 vols. (Boston, 1855–59), 10:358.
244. Prince’s note: “Dec.” The reference is to the Great Swamp Fight, 19 December 1675.
245. Not found.
246. After the Great Swamp Fight, the colonial army retired to Wickford. In late December the English raided Pomham’s deserted home village, destroying it.
247. Not found.
248. Narragansett sachem Quinnapin was a well-connected, prominent war leader of the Narragansetts. He was a nephew of the renowned Miantonomo, a brother-in-law to sachem Philip by his first marriage, and husband of the powerful Pocasset sachem Weetamoo. He was captured in August 1676, tried in Newport, and shot 25 August 1676. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 385.
249. Capt. Samuel Brocklebank (c. 1630–1676) of Rowley, Capt. Joseph Sill (1639–1692) of Cambridge, and Capt. Samuel Wadsworth (d. 1676) of Milton commanded reinforcements sent from camps at Dedham and Rehoboth. Brocklebank was a deacon of the church in Rowley and captain of the town’s militia company. Sill had served nearly from the outset of the war and narrowly escaped destruction with Capt. Richard Beers’s detachment on 4 September 1675 near Northfield. He returned to the Connecticut River area in the spring of 1676 and served in the “Eastward,” or Maine, operations in the autumn, after the war in southern New England had wound down. He moved to Lyme, Connecticut, after the war and died there at the age of 53. After garrisoning the Marlboro-Milton area through the winter, Wadsworth and his company of seventy men, including Brocklebank, were drawn into an ambush near Sudbury on 21 April 1676. Only thirteen English escaped the slaughter; Wadsworth and Brocklebank were not among them. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 140; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 206, 218–31, 266–72.
250. Not identified.
251. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:138–39.
252. James Oliver (d. 1682), son of Thomas Oliver, the ruling elder of Boston’s First Church, was made a freeman of Massachusetts Bay in 1640, was captain of the Artillery Company in 1656 and 1666, served in several town offices, and was captain of the First Military Company of Boston c. 1673. Appointed to command a Boston company in the Narragansett campaign, he was discharged in February 1676. The following September a would-be lynch mob approached him to obtain his support for the jailbreak and unlawful execution of some Native prisoners. Although generally no friend to Natives, an indignant Oliver reportedly drove the ringleaders off with his walking stick. In a 1680 petition in which he prayed to be released from further service, he described himself as aged and infirm. The petition was granted, and Oliver died two years later. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 173–78.
254. I.e., tenth month (December).
256. Josiah Winslow.
258. I.e., “John, a rogue,” probably “Stone-wall John,” a Narragansett who had lived with the English before the war and apparently had learned stonemasonry. He led a parlay on 15 December, which the English suspected was a ruse to stall the attackers. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 181.
260. Capt. Joseph Gardner of Salem, in the thick of the Great Swamp Fight, was killed instantly by a bullet through his head, apparently from indiscriminate “friendly” fire. Benjamin Church, “Entertaining Passages Relating to Philip’s War,” in Richard Slotkin and James K. Folsom, So Dreadfull a Judgement: Puritan Responses to King Philip’s War, 1676–1677 (Middletown, Conn., 1978), 413.
261. Capt. Nathaniel Davenport (b. c. 1632) of Boston was killed just within the breach in the Narragansett fort. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 129; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 168.
262. The following line, ending with “undoes them” is written in the margin but seems to have been intended to go here. At least, that is how Cotton read it; see his transcription, which follows.
263. oshua Tifte, a former resident of Pettaquamscutt, had apparently been living with the Narragansett for some time, to the disgust of his family—his father cut him out of his 1674 will with the bequest of only a shilling. Captured near Providence and interrogated, Tifte admitted that he was present in the Narragansett fort during the 19 December battle and probably fighting against the English. Convicted of treason, the notorious renegade was hanged and quartered at Wickford on 18 January 1676. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 139–40.
264. Hinckley’s letter to Cotton (not found) contained the report relayed by Cotton that follows, based upon the testimony of James Quannapaquait, recorded by Daniel Gookin, 24 January 1675/6. The original relation is at the Connecticut Archives; the most recent transcription appears in Neal Salisbury, The Sovereignty and Goodness of God by Mary Rowlandson, with Related Documents (Boston, 1997), 24, 118–28.
265. James Quannapaquait, a.k.a. James Rumneymarsh of Nashaway, and Job Kattanannit were Nipmuck men released from internment on Deer Island to spy for the English. They pretended to be enemies of the English and successfully infiltrated the insurgents’ camps. On 24 January James brought Daniel Gookin word of an imminent attack on Lancaster, Massachusetts. Gookin was unable to persuade authorities of the report’s authenticity, however, and by the time Job brought confirmation on 9 February, it was too late; Lancaster was attacked the next day. Daniel Gookin, An Historical Account of the Doings and Sufferings of the Christian Indians in New England in the years 1675, 1676, 1677 (New York, 1972), 486–90.
266. Wamesit, a Pawtucket “praying town” on the Merrimack River.
267. James and Job were hardly exaggerating. The Christian Indians suffered terribly on the bleak island that winter. Some 400 were incarcerated there by March 1676. By that time, many more had died of exposure and privation. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 150.
268. One-eyed John, a.k.a. Monoco, led an attack on Lancaster the previous August and was shortly to lead another. He was captured in the final days of the war. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 164–65.
269. Matoonus was a Nipmuck war captain who led the first attack against a Massachusetts town, Mendon, at the beginning of the war. In late July 1676 another Nipmuck, Sagamore John, handed him over to Massachusetts authorities when he submitted himself and his followers. Matoonus was then executed by a Nipmuck firing squad on Boston Common. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 223.
270. New York Governor Edmund Andros kept a close eye on the war, especially since King Philip had come to seek help from the Mohawks in the winter of 1675–76.
271. Capt. Richard Beers of Watertown and a company of about thirty-six men were ambushed on 4 September 1675 near Squakeag, north of Deerfield on the Connecticut River. Robert Pepper, a young soldier, was wounded and taken captive at that time. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 87.
272. “Here ends the account.”
273. William Mayo (1654–1691), son of John Mayo and Hannah Reycraft of Eastham. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 7:26; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:189.
274. Lancaster, Massachusetts, was attacked 10 February by a combined force of Narragansett, Nipmuck and Wampanoag warriors. They killed at least fourteen and captured twenty-three, one of whom was the now-famous Mary Rowlandson.
275. This heading appears to have been appended some time after the text was copied and misdated at that time. From the context the actual date seems clear.
276. Gookin, Doings and Sufferings, 493–94.
277. Not found.
278. Henry Adams commanded the town’s militia and was killed in the attack. Gookin, Doings and Sufferings, 493; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 284.
279. One historian asserted that Mrs. Thurston had “probably” been partially scalped, but Newman’s second-hand account (the only source for this incident) will not support that conjecture. A simpler explanation is found further on in this letter, when Newman names some of the wounded, including Sgt. Thurston’s wife, whose “head had been peirct wth one of their Tomheags.” Jill Lepore, The Name of War: King Philip’s War and the Origins of American Identity (New York, 1998), 92–94.
280. I.e., “suspect.”
281. Capt. John Jacob (d. 1693) emigrated with his parents to Hingham in 1633. A veteran of the Narragansett Campaign, he commanded a company of eighty soldiers at Medfield when it was attacked. Lieut. Edward Oakes commanded twenty mounted troopers, also quartered in the town. Gookin, Doings and Sufferings, 493; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 283.
282. Boggestow was the area of the Charles River valley between Medfield on the east and Medway and Sherborn on the west. William S. Tilden, ed., History of the Town of Medfield, Massachusetts 1650–1886 (Boston, 1887), 24.
283. Gookin relates that on the night following the attack that had left her a widow, Mrs. Adams was killed by none other than Capt. Jacob: “having a gun in his hand half bent [half cocked], with the muzzle upward towards the chamber, he being taking his leave to be gone to his quarters, by some accident the gun fired through, and shot floor, mat, and through and through the body of the Lieutenant’s widow.” Gookin, Doings and Sufferings, 494.
284. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 167; Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 347–49.
285. Not found.
286. Owing to the present condition of the letter, some names are missing or illegible. Names in brackets are supplied by Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 349–50. Bodge worked from the same letter a century ago, when it was presumably in better shape, but even then he reported that it was “much worn and mutilated.”
287. This postscript is in John Cotton’s hand.
288. Joshua Moodey (1633–1697), Harvard class of 1653, began his ministry in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in 1658. Following a falling out with Lt. Gov. Edward Cranfield in 1684, Moodey was convicted on a charge of refusing to administer sacraments according to the Church of England liturgy. He was imprisoned for thirteen weeks and forbidden to preach in the province again. He found succor in Boston and was reportedly one of the “Five Ministers of Boston” who participated in the downfall of Sir Edmund Andros in 1689. Cotton’s son John III was called to the Portsmouth church in 1691 but stepped aside when Moodey expressed an interest in his old post. Moodey defended Philip and Mary English during the Salem witchcraft trials of 1692 and encouraged their fight to avoid certain conviction. He then returned to Portsmouth, Cranfield having left in disgrace in 1685. Upon traveling to Boston in 1697 for medical help for “a Complication of Distempers,” he died and was buried there. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates 1:367–80.
289. Shubael Dummer (1636–1692, HC 1656) was a classmate of Increase Mather’s at Harvard. His mother, Mary, had been “led away into the new opinions in Mrs Hutchinson’s time,” after which his father moved to Newbury. Dummer began preaching at York (in what is now Maine) in 1662. Dummer lost only his house and possessions on this occasion; he was not so lucky the next time. On 25 January 1692, “divers hundreds” of snowshoe-shod French Canadians and Indians assaulted the town. As many as forty-eight English were killed and seventy-three were taken captive. Rev. Dummer was reportedly shot dead near his doorway as he was mounting his horse. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates 1:471–75.
290. The colonies increasingly resorted to enslaving Native prisoners, in part to defray the staggering costs of the war. Scores, perhaps hundreds, were sent to English Caribbean colonies. The practice, especially when used against Native women and children, obviously disgusted even English-allied or neutral Natives. James D. Drake, King Philip’s War: Civil War in New England 1675–1676 (Amherst, Mass., 1999), 136–39.
291. The Massachusetts election court was held 3 May 1676. Mass Bay Recs., 5:77.
292. Andover was attacked “in the beginning of April”; one man was killed, a house was burnt, and several animals were killed or mutilated. Increase Mather, A Brief History of the Warr with the Indians in New England, in Slotkin and Folsom, So Dreadfull a Judgement, 115.
293. On 9 April, Increase Mather reported, “sundry of the enemy were seen at Billerica, and (it seemeth) had shot a man there.” Mather, A Brief History, 115.
294. Probably Rhetorices Elementa: quaestionibus et responsionibus explicata (1657) by William Dugard (1606–1662), English schoolmaster, state printer, and friend of John Milton. DNB.
295. The Rehoboth men declined the offer to abandon their town, citing their concern that “we should in soe doing be wanting to the name of God and the interest of Christ in this place, and bewraye much diffidence and cowardice, and give the adversarye occasion to triumph over us, to ye reproach of that great and fearful name of our God.” Thomas Cooper et al to Thomas Hinckley, 14 April 1676, printed in “The Hinckley Papers,” Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 2–4.
296. Capt. George Denison of Stonington and Capt. James Avery of New London, Connecticut, commanded a force of forty-seven English and eighty Natives. Early in April they surprised a band that included the Narragansett sachem Canonchet, son of Miantonomo and presumed leader of the group that had demolished Pierce’s company the month before. Some of Denison’s Native allies captured the sachem and offered to spare his life if he would urge his people to surrender; this Canonchet steadfastly refused to do. He was taken to Stonington and executed there by the Mohegan Oneco (or Oweneco) and two Pequot sachems of equal rank. In an ambiguous passage, Mather’s account suggests that the English “caused” the allied Natives to shoot Canonchet, then cut off his head, in order to drive a permanent wedge between the Indians of Connecticut and the Narragansetts. Canonchet’s captors probably needed no prodding, however; Oneco was the son of Uncas, Canonchet’s old enemy, and the Pequots likewise had little reason to love the Narragansetts. Bodge, Soldiers of King Philip’s War, 383; Mather, A Brief History, 115.
297. Canonchet reportedly received a silver-laced coat in October 1675, when he and other Narragansett sachems, then in Boston, pledged not to participate in the war against the English. According to a chronicler of the war, Canonchet was wearing this coat when his band was surprised, and in his flight he threw off first his blanket, then the distinctive and encumbering coat. William Hubbard, The Present State of New-England, Being a Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians of New England (Boston, 1677) reprinted in Samuel G. Drake, ed., The History of the Indian Wars in New England from the First Settlement to the Termination of the War with King Philip, in 1677, 2 vols. (1865; facsimile, New York, 1969), 1:182, 2:58.
298. In the Plymouth church records Cotton wrote, “The war continuing & also sickness, the chh set apart April, 19: for fasting & prayer, & also May, 30: for the same grounds.” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 1:148.
299. Today’s East Braintree, on the north side of the Monatiquot River.
300. Edward Wanton (d. 1716), Boston shipcarpenter, moved to Scituate in 1661. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:406.
301. Not found.
302. Cape Cod, far removed from the fighting, was unquestionably the safest place for English and allied Native refugees.
303. Rehoboth was attacked 28 March. There was no apparent loss of life, as the people were holed up securely in the town’s garrison houses. This left the attackers free to burn deserted homes, barns, and mills, confiscate food stores, and drive off or kill the town’s cattle. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 168.
304. Valentine Whitman (c. 1627–1701) of Providence was a deputy, town treasurer, and an interpreter who had facilitated land transactions with Native peoples. Richard LeBaron Bowen, Early Rehoboth: Documented Historical Studies of Families and Events in this Plymouth Colony Township (Rehoboth, Mass., 1948), 3:18.
305. Probably John Myles, son of the controversial Reverend John Myles. Bowen, Early Rehoboth, 3:18.
306. Ps. 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”
307. Probably a reference to the death of Rev. John Holmes of Duxbury the preceding December; see 3 January 1676.
308. A Narragansett by birth, Allumps (a.k.a. Hyems or James) was also related to Uncas, the influential sachem of the Mohegan people. Partly through Uncas’s influence, Allumps became sachem of Quinne-baug as early as 1644. Dennis A. Connole, The Indians of the Nipmuck Country in Southern New England, 1630–1750 (Jefferson, N.C., 2001), 144–45.
309. Andrew Pittimee was one of the Massachusett Christian Indians removed to Deer Island. He was subsequently recruited to scout for the English forces. His wife and two sisters were among a group of noncombatants killed by some of Capt. Moseley’s men on 7 August 1676; Pittimee was among those who discovered the bodies two days later. See Gookin, Doings and Sufferings, 501, and Jenny Hale Pulsipher, “Massacre at Hurtleberry Hill: Christian Indians and English Authority in Metacom’s War,” The William and Mary Quarterly 53 (1996): 459–86.
310. During the winter of 1675–76, Philip and his followers traveled to Schaghticoke on the Hudson River in hopes of engaging the aid of his traditional enemies, the Mohawks. Whether at the urging of New York’s Gov. Edmund Andros or for their own reasons, the Mohawks instead attacked Philip’s band, inflicting devastating casualties. Drake, King Philip’s War, 122.
311. A reference to a proposed renewal of the church covenant, a practice supported by both Cotton and Walley. Cotton had better success convincing his Plymouth congregation; see the letter of 19 July 1676 to Thomas Walley, below.
312. John Huckins (d. 1678) of Barnstable was a son-in-law to Elder John Chipman. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:487.
313. Probably a reference to the surprise English attack at Peskeompscut (Turner’s Falls) on 18 May, though the estimate of Native casualties is probably greatly inflated. The large number of remaining Natives counterattacked, and in the course of their retreat the English lost nearly one quarter of their men. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 201–4.
314. Elcanah Cushman (1651–1727), the fifth child of elder Thomas Cushman and Mary Allerton.
315. An area on the west shore of Greenwich Bay, now Warwick, Rhode Island.
316. For his second wife, Bradford married a widow whose name may have been Wiswall, nee Fitch. Robert S. Wakefield and Lee D. Van Antwerp, comps., Mayfower Families in Progress: William Bradford of the Mayfower and his Descendants for Four Generations (Plymouth, Mass., 1987), 3.
317. There is no mention of this boon in the Plymouth colony or Plymouth town records, but it is acknowledged in Plymouth Church records and is consistent with Connecticut’s subsequent actions. When news of the war’s devastation reached Ireland, sympathizers raised £1000 “for the reliefe of distressed persons” in the New England colonies. A grateful Plymouth church “set apart April, 26  to be kept as a day of thanksgiving for peace, health, supplyes of corne & provision by contribution from Connecticott & from Dublin in Ireland.” More help was to come. Connecticut had been spared most of the fighting, and its General Court, citing “good reason moveing them thereunto,” decided on 10 May 1677 to “remitt theire part of the Irish charaty to the distressed persons in the Massachusetts Colony and Plymouth Colony.” Trumbull, Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, 2:304, 483, 496–97; CSM, 22:153.
318. Benjamin Church (1639–1718) of Duxbury had moved to Sakonnet (modern-day Little Compton, Rhode Island) just before the war began. He participated in the early campaigns and in the Great Swamp Fight. In the summer of 1676 he was given command of a mixed force of English and Natives from Plymouth Colony. Even before he took the field, Church was instrumental in persuading the Sakonnet sachem Awashonks to surrender herself and her followers to the colony government. Church recruited some of the Sakonnets to join his force, which captured several bodies of enemy Indians in the Middleborough-Monponset Pond area only days before Walley’s letter. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 208–10, 216–17. See also 13 January 1691.
319. A reference to Jethro, slave of Hezekiah Willet of Swansea. On 30 June Willet was killed in a raid on that place and Jethro was captured, but he soon escaped and found, or was found by, Bradford’s men. During his captivity he had learned of Philip’s plans for an impending attack on Taunton. Bradford detached some soldiers to warn and help protect the town, so that when the attack came on 11 July, Philip’ warriors found the town too well prepared and withdrew. Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk, 210, 215; Emery, History of Taunton, 1:388.
320. Not the modern-day town on Buzzards Bay, but Mattapoisett Neck in Swansea.
321. I.e., Quinnapin’s brother; see the following letter to Thomas Walley.
322. John Bradford (1653–1736), eldest son of William Bradford and his first wife, Alice Richards (c. 1644–1671). Wakefield and Van Antwerp, Mayfower Families in Progress, 2.
323. Letter not found.
324. An account of this event, written by Cotton for the Plymouth church records, is printed in CSM, 22:148–53.
325. Probably Gov. William Bradford’s manuscript history of Plymouth Colony. See the letter to Increase Mather, 24 November 1676, below.
326. Taunton River.
327. Cuinam (spelled Keweenam in Plymouth Colony records) was implicated in the assault on the Clark garrison house by Indians who had already been condemned for the killings (see the following note). He was found guilty and “immediately accordingly executed” by beheading. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony 5:205–6.
328. William Clark’s garrison house, located on the Eel River three miles south of Plymouth center, was attacked about 9:00 a.m. on 12 March, a sabbath day. Clark was not at home, but his wife and two neighbors were killed in the raid. Totosan or Tatoson, “one of the most notorious of our enemies,” was accused of complicity in the murders along with ten others. Three of these, plus one informant who did not actually take part in the raid, were executed, but Tatoson was still at large two years later. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 5:204–6, 209.
329. John Morton (1650–1718), son of one of the original purchasers of Middleborough, moved from Plymouth to take up residence there in 1669. Although he lived in Middleborough for the rest of his life he never transferred his church membership from Plymouth. Weston, History of the Town of Middleborough, 49–50. See 30 January 1688 and 9 July 1688.
330. Wantowapuct, or William Tuspaquin, was the son of Tuspaquin, known to the English as “the black Sachem,” and Amie, Philip’s sister. The senior Tuspaquin was sachem of the Indians at Assawompsett and one of Philip’s chief followers. He was captured by Benjamin Church’s rangers and put to death at Plymouth in September 1676, but Wantowapuct apparently escaped capture. This is the last reported sighting of him; although previous chroniclers have assumed that he was killed in the final stages of the war, there is no evidence that this was the case. Ebenezer W. Peirce, Indian History, Biography and Genealogy (North Abington, Mass., 1878), 211.
331. “Carsh” in the Providence Journal transcription, but the intention is “Church,” i.e., Benjamin Church, who was related to Bradford by his marriage to Alice Southworth.
332. Undoubtedly the word here was “Bay” in the original, i.e., the Massachusetts forces. These obvious errors in transcription, together with the apparent modernizations of capitalization and spelling (see Bradford’s other letters to Cotton for comparison), underscore how unfortunate it is that the original letter is unavailable.
333. Jonathan Sparrow (d. 1707) had come to New England as a child with his parents in 1632. The family settled in Eastham on Cape Cod, where Jonathan married and became active in town affairs. He served numerous terms as deputy to the General Court and married a daughter of fellow townsman Gov. Thomas Prence. He was promoted from ensign to lieutenant in October 1675, but apparently had achieved the rank captain by the time he [Bradford] wrote this letter. Mary Walton Ferris, comp., Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines: A Memorial Volume Containing the American Ancestry of Mary Beman (Gates) Dawes (private printing, 1931), 2:765–68.
334. Presumably Samuel Arnold (1622–1693), minister of Marshfield.
335. Not found.
336. Noah Newman was married to Joanna Flynt, daughter of Rev. Henry Flynt of Braintree. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:390–91.
337. Probably the same Jethro mentioned in the letter of 18 July from William Bradford, above.
338. Thomas Shepard, minister of Charlestown. See letter from Daniel Gookin, 16 December 1677, below.
339. For a fuller account of this literary contest, see Anne Kusener Nelsen, “King Philip’s War and the Hubbard-Mather Rivalry,” The William and Mary Quarterly, 3d ser., 27 (1970): 615–29.
340. On 1 August, Church’s men surprised Philip’s band along the Taunton River in Bridgewater. Philip escaped, but his wife and son of about nine years were captured. A debate ensued over whether the boy’s life was forfeit according to Old Testament law. Douglas Edward Leach, Flintlock and Tomahawk: New England in King Philip’s War (New York, 1958), 230–31.
341. Deut. 24:16: “The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.”
342. Either “for the good of the republic” or “without transgression of the republic.”
343. Walley had married the year before; see his letter of 20 September 1675.
344. Rev. James Keith (c. 1643–1719), first minister of the Bridgewater church, was educated at Aberdeen and emigrated to Boston in 1662. Introduced to the Bridgewater congregation by Increase Mather, he was ordained in 1664. Nahum Mitchell, History of the Early Settlement of Bridgewater in Plymouth County, Massachusetts (1840; reprint, Bowie, Md., 1997), 43–44, 207.
345. William Brett (d. 1681) emigrated to New England by 1645. Described as “a grave and godly man,” he was made ruling elder of the Bridgewater church shortly after Keith’s ordination. Mitchell, History of the Early Settlement of Bridgewater, 45, 120.
346. Ps. 137:8–9: “O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us. Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.”
347. Deut. 24:16: “The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.”
348. 2 Chron. 25:4: “but he slew not their children, but did as it is written in the law in the book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, saying, The fathers shall not die for the children, neither shall the children die for the fathers, but every man shall die for his own sin.”
349. Samuel Arnold of Marshfield; see his letter of 3 April 1677, below.
350. Wamsutta (d. 1662), son and successor of sachem Massasoit of Pokanoket. In 1660, Wamsutta and his younger brother Metacomet adopted the English names Alexander and Philip, respectively, at least in dealings with the English. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1855–61) (hereafter PCR), 3:192. The issue regarding Alexander will come up again; see the letter to Increase Mather of 19 March 1677, below.
351. A reference to Gov. William Bradford’s manuscript history of the colony, known today as Of Plimoth Plantation. Portions of the history appeared in print as early as 1669, but it was not printed in its entirety until the middle of the nineteenth century.
352. [G. Mourt et al.], A Relation or Journall of the beginnings and proceedings of the English Plantation setled at Plimoth in New England, by certaine English Adventurers both Merchants and others (London, 1622).
353. Edward Winslow, Good Newes from New England A true Relation of things very remarkable at the Plantation of Plimoth in New-England (London, 1624).
354. 1 Tim. 1:15: “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.”
355. The object of the Cottons’ concern was their eldest son, John (1661–1706), then at Harvard, from which he graduated four and a half years later. After graduation he preached in Exeter, New Hampshire, for about six years, during which time he apparently took part in an armed protest against the unpopular Gov. Cranfield’s policies. “By reason of the Indian War, &c.” of 1690–91, he moved his family to his parents’ house in Plymouth and occasionally preached at Scituate. In 1691 he went to Yarmouth to assist Rev. Thomas Thornton, and when Thornton moved to Boston two years later, Cotton succeeded him as pastor. In 1704 he “was taken off from public service by a paralytic disorder,” and less than a year later, “being under weakness of body and mind,” he resigned. He resembled his father in one particular way: his brother Josiah descibed him as “of a loving liberal nature, but of a quick spirit so that his haste too often veiled his prudence.” John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 3:212–15.
356. Not found.
357. Boston’s second great fire (the first was in 1653) began on the morning of 27 November 1676. Samuel Sewall wrote an account of the blaze in his famous diary, noting especially that “the House of the Man of God, Mr. Mather, and God’s House were burnt with fire. Yet God mingled mercy, and sent a considerable rain, which gave check in great measure to the (otherwise) masterless flames; lasted all the time of the fire, though fair before and after. Mr. Mather saved his Books and other Goods.” Samuel Sewall, The Diary of Samuel Sewall 1674–1729, ed. M. Halsey Thomas, 2 vols. (New York, 1973), 1:28.
358. A grammatically suspect phrase, the sense of which is apparently “meet the three of us as one”; that is, Walley with Cotton and his wife.
359. The first meetinghouse in Barnstable, erected in 1646, was replaced in 1681 by a larger building on Coggin’s Pond, near Thomas Hinckley’s house. Donald G. Trayser, Barnstable: Three Centuries of a Cape Cod Town (1939; reprint, yarmouthport, Mass., 1971), 12–13.
360. The Cottons’ eighth child, Josiah (b. 10 September 1675), died 9 January 1677.
361. A confusing passage, but given the context it is probably “Religion never used to be in danger among clergymen.”
362. “Or among respectable persons.”
363. Hopestill Newman Shove, the wife of Taunton minister George Shove, died 7 March 1674. Rev. Shove married Hannah Bacon Walley, the widow of Rev. Thomas Walley’s son Thomas, on 18 February 1675. PCR, 8:65; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:554.
364. Not found.
365. James 5:11: “Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.”
367. Not found.
368. Letter not found.
369. A reference to Cushman’s fifth child, Fear (b. 1653). Hubert Kinney Shaw, comp., Families of the Pilgrims (Boston, 1956), 36–37.
370. Not found.
371. Not the famous “Pilgrim” but his “marrinor” son (c. 1626–1702), who moved to Boston before 1669. Esther Littleford Woodworth-Barnes, comp., Alicia Crane Williams, ed., Mayfower Families through Five Generations, vol. 16 (Plymouth, Mass., 1999), 27, 30, 33.
372. Not found.
373. Probably Peter Thatcher. See the letter to Increase Mather of 15 & 16 July 1678, below.
374. Jabez Howland (b. c. 1644–1712), eighth child of Mayfower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley. Shaw, Families of the Pilgrims, 108.
375. Jether/Jethro/Jebber, who appears infrequently in the letters that follow, was a Native lad, perhaps one of the many captive Native children who were given to English settlers after the war. Cotton was obviously preparing the boy for service in Mather’s house.
376. Isa. 39:8: “Then said Hezekiah to Isaiah, Good is the word of the LORD which thou hast spoken. He said moreover, For there shall be peace and truth in my days.”
377. The “consolations” of this last passage, in particular, echo themes found in the above letters of Thomas Walley.
378. Luke 7:13: “And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not.”
379. A reference to Fulfilling of the Scripture: Or, An essay, shewing the exact accomplishment of the word of God in his works performed & to be performed (1669), by Robert Fleming (1630–1694), Scottish divine.
380. Not found.
381. A reference to Gen. 42:36: “And Jacob their father said unto them, Me have ye bereaved of my children: Joseph is not, and Simeon is not, and ye will take Benjamin away: all these things are against me.”
382. Ps. 119:71: “It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.”
383. Actually, Mather’s copy of William Hubbard’s The Present State of New-England, Being a Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians of New England (Boston, 1677). Mather apparently sent his copy to Cotton for comment as he was working on his own A Relation of the Troubles Which Have Happened in New-England (see letter to Increase Mather, 24 November 1676, n. 1). Hubbard’s book first appeared sometime after 16 February 1677, the date of Hubbard’s dedicatory letter printed with the volume. A later printing contained an endorsement of the book, dated 29 March 1677, by Boston magistrates Simon Bradstreet, Daniel Denison and Joseph Dudley. Mather and Hubbard (1621–1704), the minister of Ipswich, were rivals in the print-war of words to interpret the significance of King Philip’s War. See Nelsen, “King Philip’s War and the Hubbard-Mather Rivalry,” 615–29.
384. See the fuller account to which this refers, below in this letter.
385. I.e., “Treasurer”?
386. John Cotton, still at Cambridge.
387. Perhaps a reference to Newman’s exposed position in Taunton during the war.
388. This is the last known record indicating the fate of Philip’s son.
389. Monponset Pond, in present-day Halifax, Massachusetts.
390. Thomas Willet (c. 1607–1674) was captain of the Plymouth company of militia in 1648, a frequent assistant after 1651, and a commissioner of the United Colonies for Plymouth. His connections with the Dutch at Manhattan apparently spanned some years, for in 1654 he was chosen to advise English colonial forces who were preparing to support an attack on the Dutch colony by Cromwell’s government. The assault never materialized, and after the war Willet carried on with business there. When an English squadron seized Manhattan in 1664 and renamed it New York, Willet became the first English governor of the city. He later returned to Plymouth, residing in Seekonk, where he was buried on 3 August 1674. Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 371–72.
391. William Collier (d. c. 1671), one of the original Merchant Adventurers of Plymouth Colony and one of the few to emigrate to New England, in 1633. He lived in Duxbury and served the colony in several high-ranking offices. He was an assistant at the time of this incident. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 268.
392. In Marshfield, Massachusetts.
393. Rev. Hubbard’s account, taken from an unknown source or sources, differs significantly from Winslow’s relation. See Hubbard, Present State of New-England, 1:49–51.
394. Morton’s New England’s Memorial outlines the main points of the General Court held on 6 August 1662, where Philip appeared at the insistence of the worried English. The record says that there he reaffirmed his friendship with the Plymouth government and acknowledged himself to be a subject of King Charles II. Nathaniel Morton, New England’s Memorial (1854, reprint, Bowie, Md., 1997), 187; see also PCR, 4:26.
395. John Philips (c. 1633–1726) was a master mariner of Charlestown who parlayed his success at sea into prominence on land. He was made a freeman in 1677; became first a lieutenant, then captain, of the Artillery Company; was a representative to the colony legislature from 1683 to 1686; and served on the Committee of Safety in the revolt against the Andros government. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1990), 3:412–13.
396. Samuel Danforth (1652–1676), the eldest son of Deputy Governor Thomas Danforth, was a classmate of Samuel Sewall’s at Harvard. Amid some controversy, he was elected Resident Fellow, or Tutor, of the college in 1675. He contracted smallpox on a trip to London and died there on 22 December 1676. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:369–70.
397. Peter Bulkley (1643–1688), deputy from Concord, and William Stoughton (1631–1701), Norfolk County justice, left for England in October 1676 on a mission to answer a complaint that Massachusetts had usurped the proprietary rights of John Mason and Sir Ferdinando Gorges to lands between the Merrimack and Naumkeag Rivers. There were other complaints as well, emanating from the “odious and rapacious” Edward Randolph and from Quakers charging continued persecution in New England. In the event the agents could do little, as the Court was preoccupied with the Popish Plot and other political matters. Bulkley and Stoughton returned to Boston in late 1679, after three years of fruitless lobbying. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:194–96; 2:68–69.
398. Samuel Arnold (1622–1693) lived in Sandwich in the 1640s, then in Yarmouth as early as 1653; there he was elected deputy in 1654 and 1656. He was ordained Marshfield’s third minister in 1658 and served in that capacity until his death. Charles F. Swift, History of Old Yarmouth (yarmouth Port, Mass., 1884), 67.
399. The editors were unable to learn more about the situation to which Arnold here refers, but it sounds intriguing.
400. Gov. Winslow; see below.
401. Not found.
402. Peletiah Glover (1637–1692) attended Harvard College from 1651 to 1654 but did not graduate. He took up the ministry of Springfield, which Samuel Hooker had declined, in 1661. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:558–59.
403. A meeting of the Boston freemen on 5 March 1677 chose Anthony Stoddard and Maj. Thomas Savage as deputies to the General Court. Stoddard (d. 1687) was a merchant and linen draper. Formerly a selectman, he was a member of the Artillery Company and, according to Sewall, “the ancientest shopkeeper in Town.” Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:134. Thomas Savage (1607–1682), who married a daughter of Anne Hutchinson, was a tailor and shopkeeper and a founder of the Old South Church. He had also been a selectman, held the rank of captain in the Artillery Company, and during King Philip’s War had been a major of Massachusetts forces. Thwing Index of Boston Inhabitants, Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston.
404. Seven selectmen for Boston were chosen on 12 March 1677, including Henry Allen and Jacob Eliot. Allen (1627–1696), a housewright, held his office for ten years. Eliot (1633–1693) was a deacon in the Old South Church; upon his death, fellow member Samuel Sewall remarked, “We shall hardly get another such a sweet Singer as we have lost. He was one of the most Serviceable Men in Boston.” Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:312–13; Thwing Index.
405. Two curious choices for the office of constable. John Saffin (c. 1634–1710), originally from Plymouth Colony, was a merchant of Boston and later Speaker of the House of Deputies. Anthony Howard or Haywood (c. 1639–1689) was also a well-off merchant. Thwing Index. For Saffin, see also 19 October 1696.
406. Ephraim Savage (1645–1731) served in King Philip’s War as a sergeant, became an ensign later in 1677, and eventually rose to the rank of captain. He was also town clerk of Boston. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:128–30.
407. Although the war in southern New England was entering its last months, fighting had spread to the Maine settlements; this continued for nearly a year after Philip was slain. In October 1676, Samuel Sewall wrote to a cousin that though “the late massacre” had ended for most of New England, “yet there is some trouble and bloodshed still in the more remote Eastern parts.” Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:26.
408. Wells is on the coast of southern Maine, between the Piscataqua and Saco Rivers.
409. Black Point is in modern-day Scarborough, Maine.
410. Winter Harbor is part of today’s Arcadia National Park, in Maine.
411. Rev. Samuel Willard (1640–1707) was pastor of the church in Groton, Massachusetts, when a series of Native assaults in March 1676 destroyed much of the town, leading to its evacuation by the English. Groton was resettled in 1678, but by that time Willard had accepted a call from Boston’s South Church, where he was installed in March 1678. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:13–14.
413. Joseph Dudley (1647–1720), the son of Gov. Thomas Dudley, graduated from Harvard College in 1665. He began his career as a deputy from Roxbury in 1673, served in the campaign against the Narragansetts, and was chosen an assistant to the General Court in 1678. A vigorous supporter of closer imperial ties, in 1684 he was dropped from office by the voters. Under the Dominion government he flourished, however. He was president of the provisional royal government, and chief justice after Gov. Andros arrived. His part in the introduction of Church of England ceremonies to New England and his participation in the controversial land-grabbing schemes of the Andros government made him one of the most hated men in New England. Considered a traitor of the colony by the Puritan orthodoxy, in particular, he was deposed, imprisoned and ejected when the Dominion fell in 1689. Returning to the colony in 1692, he plotted continuously to become governor, an aspiration that he finally realized in 1702. American National Biography, ed. John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (New York and Oxford, 1999) (hereafter ANB).
414. Probably Peter Thatcher. See the letter to Increase Mather of 15 and 16 July 1678, below.
415. Hubbard’s history says that Mosely and his men took ship at Swansea, landed somewhere on the coast near Smith’s garrison at Wickford, and on their way there “happily surprised thirty six Indians, one of whom he took along with him as a Guide, Peter by Name, that was at that Time under some Disgust with his Country-men, or his Sachim, which made him prove the more real Friend to our Forces in the Service.” Hubbard, Present State of New-England, 1:138–40.
416. See the letter to Increase Mather of 19 March 1677, above.
417. Probably “Letters of Imprematr.”
418. Not found.
419. Barnabas Lothrop of Barnstable; letters not found. See the letter to Thomas Hinckley of 14 February 1679, below.
420. Walley’s daughter Hannah (d. 1711) married Samuel Allen of Barnstable (d. 1726) on 10 May 1664. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:44.
421. It is not clear if this is the same Mr. Clark, or the same situation, referred to in Samuel Arnold’s letter of 4 April 1677.
422. Word missing? “Own” or “admit”?
423. Probably Nicholas Baker, see the letter of 9 July from Nicholas Baker, below.
424. Not identified.
425. I.e., “Churches of Jesus Christ.”
426. Shurtleff, Records of Plymouth Colony, 5:233. For the response of the elders, see the letter of 12 July 1677 to the General Court, below.
427. Not found.
428. Constant Southworth (c. 1615–1679), stepson of Gov. William Bradford, was treasurer for the colony and an assistant to the General Court. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 355–56.
429. There is no record of this event in Plymouth colony, town, or church records.
430. Rev. Arnold recovered from his illness and lived another sixteen years.
431. The Cottons were obviously relieved that their son was under his uncle’s watchful eye.
432. Not found.
433. Rev. Gershom Hobart (1645–1707, H.C. 1667), son of Rev. Peter Hobart of Hingham, found work when the displaced residents of Groton, Massachusetts, returned to their abandoned town in the spring of 1678. He was ordained there in November 1679. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:229–30. See also  August 1694.
434. Jethro, presumably.
435. In June 1677, Edmund Andros sent 100 troops with cannon, a prefabricated fort and a year’s supply of provisions by sea to the Maine coast in an attempt to end the fighting there and to secure the claim of the Duke of York to the region. Adding teeth to his diplomacy with the Wabenaki peoples was a large force of Mohawk and Oneida warriors that traveled overland from New York. Within a month, Andros and the Iroquois had persuaded the Wabenaki to make peace and to return English prisoners and several captured fishing vessels. Stephen Saunders Webb, 1676: The End of American Independence (Cambridge, Mass., 1985), 387–88.
436. The Mohawks thoroughly distrusted Uncas and his son Oweneco. In June 1677 Oweneco was “surprised and taken from the English at Wegwanack & carried away captive,” probably to ensure Uncas’s good behavior while Mohawk war parties were far away helping Andros. By May 1678 the Connecticut government helped to secure Oweneco’s return. J. Hammond Trumbull, The Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut (Hartford, 1850), 2:499.
437. Maj. Thomas Clark (d. 1683), one of Boston’s wealthiest merchants and an officer in the Artillery Company, led a Massachusetts force to Maine on 28 June. Like Andros, the Bay men aimed to neutralize the Wabenaki and to reassert English authority, in this case represented by Massachusetts. Clark and his men fared less well, however, suffering heavy casualties in an ambush at Black Point. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:401; Webb, 1676, 388.
438. Rev. Nicholas Baker (d. 1678) “had but a private education,” according to Cotton Mather, but was invited to preach at Scituate’s First Church after the death of Henry Dunster in 1659. Ordained a year later, in 1675 he was instrumental in reconciling the First and Second Churches, which had been feuding for more than thirty years. Samuel Deane, History of Scituate, Massachusetts, from its First Settlement to 1831 (Boston, 1831), 181–82.
439. Rev. Thomas Thornton (c. 1607–1700) was educated for the ministry in England but was ejected from his pulpit there in 1662. He emigrated to New England and began preaching to the Yarmouth church in 1663, but was not confirmed there for another four years. Some residents had opposed his candidacy and had tried to discourage him. Apparently hard feelings remained, for after one of his sermons a listener declared, “half of it was lies” (he was later persuaded to retract his statement). Thornton also served the community as a physician and, like Cotton, ministered to Native congregations as well. Thornton moved to Boston in 1693, probably to live with his son Timothy, a merchant and representative. Swift, History of Old Yarmouth, 92; Marion Vuillemier, The Town of Yarmouth, Massachusetts: A History, 1639–1989 (Yarmouth, Mass., 1989), 9–10, 243; Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, 1936), 203; Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:426.
440. John Smith left the Barnstable church about 1663, “being different in opinion from them.” He sojourned in New York, returning to Barnstable in 1672. He assisted Thomas Walley in the pastorate until the latter’s death, filling the office until 1688, when he retired. Trayser, Barnstable, 37–38.
441. Rev. William Witherell (1600–1684) moved from Duxbury in 1645 to become the pastor of Scituate’s Second Church. Deane, History of Scituate, 190–92.
442. Thomas King (d. 1691), an early settler of Scituate, was an elder of the Second Church. Deane, History of Scituate, 301. See 3 October 1684.
443. Henry Cobb (d. 1679) was one of the early settlers of Scituate. He moved to Barnstable about 1641and became a deputy for the town and an elder of the church there. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 265–66.
444. John Chipman (c. 1620–1708) was one of two men chosen to be ruling elders of the Barnstable church in 1670. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 262–63.
445. For a fuller account of the activities of the “Indian Mariners,” see Hubbard, Present State of New-England, 2:238–40.
446. This harrowing incident, which occurred on 15 July 1677, is detailed in James Axtell, “The Vengeful Women of Marblehead: Robert Roules’s Deposition of 1677,” The William and Mary Quarterly, 3d ser., 31 (1974): 647–52.
447. A paraphrase of Jabob’s complaint in Gen. 42:36.
448. Probably Simon Cooper, a Newport, Rhode Island, physician. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:454.
450. Not found; presumably not Mather’s letter of 23 July, above.
451. Prince’s note: “Cotton Mather was then 15 years old.”
452. More than a year after King Philip’s War came to an end in southern New England, the upper Connecticut Valley was still a dangerous place. Natives raided Hatfield, whose people were “a little too secure,” on 19 September. Several were killed and two dozen taken prisoner. “About a fortnight after,” according to William Hubbard [actually 10 October], “the same Indians attempted to take a Mill at Hadley, two miles from the Town,” but in Hubbard’s account they failed. Hubbard, Present State of New-England, 2:239–40.
453. On 10 October 1677 the Massachusetts General Court ordered that the third Thursday in November would be held as a day of thanksgiving for “the great plentifull harvest, a cessation of the wrath and rage of the ennemy in great measure, &c.” Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed., Records of the Governor and Company of the Massachusetts Bay in New England (1628–86), 6 vols. (Boston, 1853–54), 5:156.
454. I.e., “have.”
455. Not found.
456. Samuel Angier (1655–1719); see the letter of 17 September 1679 from Thomas Cooper et al., below.
457. On 1 November 1677, the General Court enacted a law that “noe pson whoe hath Not taken the oath of fidellitie shall have libertie to voate in any Towne meeting untill he hath taken the aforesaid oath.” PCR, 11:248.
458. Not found.
459. Capt. John Gorham of Barnstable died 5 February 1676 of wounds suffered in the Great Swamp Fight the previous December. His son John led a company of men in the 1690 campaign against Quebec. Trayser, Barnstable, 107, 112.
460. “Hail, dear sir.”
461. “Dearest relation.”
462. I.e., “timely”? The editors found no other record of this attempted suicide.
463. Samuel Mather (1626–1671) was the older brother of Increase Mather. Cotton Mather later wrote that his uncle was “the first that did Preach the Gospel to the North Church of Boston,” but he left for England in 1650, never to return. He became minister to a church in Dublin in 1656 and died there at the age of forty-five. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:78–87.
464. Urian Oakes (1631–1681) graduated from Harvard in 1649. About 1654 he traveled to England, where he served as “Chaplain to One of the most Noted Persons then in the Nation,” according to Cotton Mather. Bearing with the persecution of nonconformists after the Restoration, in 1671 he finally accepted the repeated invitations from the church in Cambridge to become its pastor. Along with Rev. Thomas Shepard of neighboring Charlestown, he opposed broad toleration in New England. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:173–85.
465. Wilhelm Schickard (1592–1635), German astronomer and mathematician, is perhaps best known today for having devised a calculating machine in 1623. Also in that year, however, he produced Horologium ebraeum, a Hebrew grammar book that was popular at Harvard.
466. Possibly a work by Thomas Tully (1620–1676), English divine. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols., (London, 1885–1900).
467. Possibly a reference to letters of Pliny the Younger, who was governor of Bithnia, or Bithynia (later Byzantium) from 111 to 113. In one famous exchange, Pliny reported his actions against Christians to the emperor Trajen. If this is the reference, then presumably it is a small book used for the instruction of the scholars.
468. Thomas Shepard (1635–1677) was the second son of the famous Rev. Thomas Shepard of Cambridge. A graduate of Harvard College in 1653, he was ordained the teacher of the Charlestown church six years later. He supported the “Coercive Power” of the magistrates in matters of religious toleration, especially with regard to Baptists. During the smallpox epidemic of 1677–1678, more than ninety persons died in Charlestown. Shepard “went with his Life in His Hand,” according to Cotton Mather, to “One of his Flock, who lying sick of this Distemper, desired a Visit from him.” Shepard caught the disease and died on 22 December 1677. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:327–35.
469. Prince’s note: “Plimouth. Jan. 7. 1677/8.”
470. Cotton’s contemporaries believed that some diseases could be transmitted by “miasmas,” foul odors such as those caused by decaying vegetation (for example, in swamps) and flesh.
471. The Cottons’ ninth child, Samuel, was born 10 February 1678 and died 23 December 1682.
472. Seaborn Cotton; see the letter from Seaborn Cotton of 4 February 1679, below.
473. Possibly Richard Way (d. 1697), cooper of Dorchester, member of the Artillery Company and lieutenant at Castle Island. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:440–41.
474. Not found.
475. The details of Cotton’s “case,” to which the mutilated postscript in the previous letter may also refer, is unknown to the editors. In the following letter, Increase Mather appears also to be giving Cotton advice on the matter.
476. Probably the Jonathan Dunham and Mary Delanoy who married 29 November 1655. Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 662. See also 20 July 1694.
477. Prince’s note: “ie George Shove.”
478. Thomas Wally died on 24 March 1678.
479. When John Cotton Sr. resolved to emigrate to New England, he resigned the vicarage of Boston, Lincolnshire. His cousin Anthony Tuckney (1599–1670) succeeded him in that place. By his first of four wives, Tuckney had a son, Jonathan (1639?–1693). As his letter reveals, Jonathan did not pursue the ministry, and he furnishes some reasons for his decision. One observer added that, although Jonathan was of good learning, it was “render’d useless by melancholy.” DNB, s.v. “Tuckney, Anthony.”
480. Not found.
481. Some of Tuckney’s works appeared in print as Forty Sermons (1676); Prælectiones Theologicæ followed (1679). DNB, s.v. “Tuckney, Anthony.”
482. Increase Mather.
483. Rev. Samuel Whiting (1597–1679), like John Cotton Sr., had come from Boston, Lincolnshire. He was pastor of the church in Lynn. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:520.
484. Boston in Lincolnshire.
485. Hab. 3:17–18: “Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.”
486. Mic. 7:7–9: “Therefore I will look unto the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me. Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me. I will bear the indignation of the LORD, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold his righteousness.”
487. “The Lord’s will be done.”
488. In the records of the Plymouth church for 1678, Cotton wrote: “The chh set apart March, 27: as a day of Fasting & prayer for continuance of Peace healing the small px, & for sundry of our ministers that were languishing & for other mercies.” CSM, 22:154. This memo is apparently Cotton’s plan for a personal fast day as well.
489. “Everything as before.”
490. Samuel Treat (1648–1717), an active missionary to the Natives on Cape Cod, began preaching at Eastham in 1672 and was ordained there in 1675. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 208.
491. Dan. 5:27: “TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting.”
492. Cotton Mather’s Harvard commencement took place on Tuesday, 13 August 1678.
493. “How you [I] play at nothing!”
494. “How changed I am from what I was formerly.”
495. “By another name.”
496. Cotton’s maintenance had to be approved by the town each year. A town meeting on 26 June 1678 agreed to pay him “four score pounds . . . on the same Conditions as it was performed the last yeer,” which was one-third in “country pay”—wheat, butter, tar, or shingles; one-third in rye, peas, or malt; and one-third in Indian corn and wheat. PTR, 1:154, 157.
497. Rev. Peter Thatcher (1651–1727) was a Harvard classmate (1671) of jurist Samuel Sewall. At the personal invitation of Gov. Hinckley, Thatcher preached twice in Barnstable in 1678. The church there responded favorably and entered into negotiations with him to settle a ministry in Barnstable. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:370–79. See the letter from Thomas Hinckley of 13 July 1680, below.
498. A reference to the recent capture by Mohawk raiders of twenty-two Natives at Magunkaquog, a “praying town” southwest of Natick. Jean O’Brien, Dispossession by Degrees: Indian Land and Identity in Natick, Massachusetts, 1650–1790 (Cambridge, Mass., 1997), 65; Allen W. Trelease, Indian Affairs of Colonial New York: The Seventeenth Century (Lincoln, Neb., 1997), 237.
499. Punkapoag, located in modern-day Canton and Stoughton, Massachusetts, was the second of fourteen “praying towns” established in Massachusetts for Christian Indians. Richard W. Cogley, John Eliot’s Mission to the Indians before King Philip’s War (Cambridge, Mass., and London, 1999), 140–41.
500. Samuel Hinckley (1653–1697). See 5 March 1696.
501. It is strange to think that a young Cotton Mather, or anyone else, would have come to Plymouth to “take the waters,” but this seems to have been the case. The operation of the spring is not otherwise documented to the editors’ knowledge, but there is a Watercure Street in the center of Plymouth that may suggest its original whereabouts.
502. “Bound to your rules, not to his own.”
503. Rev. Nicholas Baker of Scituate died of “the stone” on 22 August 1678. Deane, History of Scituate, 182.
504. On 12 August 1678, the James Frigate entered Plymouth harbor, having come via Carolina and, most recently, New York. Solomon Blackleach, or Blackleich, “commander in cheiffe,” Capt. Robert Daniel and one John Roads were aboard. Over the next several weeks the crew set about repairing and refitting the vessel, “theire designe unknown to the authoritie heer.” Their evasiveness raised suspicions, the more so when Blackleach began surreptitiously recruiting sailors from ships in Boston. Fearing that Blackleach and company intended a privateering or even piratical voyage, and at the urging of Massachusetts magistrates, Plymouth authorities detained the vessel and examined the officers and Roads. They discovered that in fact Blackleach had no privateer’s commission but had intended to use one issued to Daniel by the Dutch, and that Roads previously had been banished by Massachusetts for piracy. Furthermore, they learned that Roads had broken out of jail in New York and had come on board the James Frigate “in a private way.” The case is recorded in Plymouth Colony Records, 5:265–70.
505. John Sunderland (1618–1703), a parchmentmaker of Boston, had belonged to the Artillery Company in 1658 but had fallen on hard times by 1672. He subsequently moved to Eastham. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:232–33.
506. The reference is to Increase Mather’s The First principles of New-England, concerning the subject of baptisme & communion of churches (Cambridge, Mass., 1675).
507. John Bowles was an elder of the Roxbury church and the father of the John Bowles whom Cotton discussed in his letter to Increase Mather of 14 February 1679, below.
508. Not found.
509. “Oh that all Christians.”
510. Elder Brett; see the letter from James Keith of 30 October 1676.
511. Not found.
512. John Norton (c. 1651–1716), a graduate of the Harvard class of 1671, was ordained a minister at Hingham on 27 November 1678. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:394.
513. “Oh shame!”
514. “Up to/as far as the altars.”
515. Lutetia was an ancient city on the site of Paris.
516. A “calend” is the first day of a Roman month. Since the Greeks did not use calends in their months, the assurance that a thing may happen “in a Greek calend” translates roughly to “when pigs fly.”
517. Increase and Maria Cotton Mather’s fourth child, Nathaniel (1669–1688), who became a classmate of Cotton’s son Rowland at Harvard.
518. Increase and Maria’s fifth child, Sarah, born 1671.
519. Increase and Maria’s second child, Maria, born 1665.
520. “Poised between hope and fear.”
521. At the 3 June 1679 meeting of the General Court, Robert Latham was fined ten shillings “for being twise drunke.” PCR, 6:16.
522. Seaborn Cotton (1633–1686), eldest son of John Cotton Sr., received his name by being born at sea en route to New England. Like his brother after him, he preached in Connecticut following his graduation from Harvard (1651), but in 1657 he accepted a call from Hampton, now in New Hampshire, where he was ordained two years later. As he had required of Joshua Moodey, in 1684 Gov. Cranfield demanded that Cotton administer sacraments according to the Church of England liturgy. Rather than do so, Cotton absented himself from the colony until Cranfield left in 1685. Cotton died the next year. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:286–93.
523. Not found.
524. “Sound like slander.”
525. The identity of “Mr M” is unclear.
526. Bowles was not called back, however. He later preached in Dedham and became the ruling elder of the Roxbury church in 1688. Turning to politics, he was a representative to the General Court, and he was Speaker of the House when he died of smallpox in 1691. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:392–93.
527. Cotton’s son John, still at Harvard.
528. Barnabas Lothrop (1636–1735) was a son of the Rev. John Lothrop (1584–1653), one of the first English settlers of Barnstable. Barnabas became a judge of common pleas and of probate, an assistant, and after the union with Massachusetts, a councillor in the administration of Gov. William Phipps. Trayser, Barnstable, 174.
529. Constant Southworth died on 11 March 1679. His will is dated 27 February 1679; his inventory was taken the following 15 March. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 365.
530. James Cudworth (d. 1681) of Scituate was stripped of his office as deputy, his rank as captain, and his franchise in 1658 for “entertaining” Quakers, but eventually all three were restored. Early in King Philip’s War, he was appointed to command Plymouth Colony forces depite his (accurate) protestations of incompetence. Elected deputy governor in 1681, he was sent to England to press the ministry for a colony charter, but he died soon after his arrival there. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 275; George D. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony: A History of New Plymouth 1620–1691 (New Haven, Conn., 1966), 197–98.
531. Relations between the brothers-in-law apparently became strained after this time; in a letter from Joseph Dudley to Increase Mather, dated 12 December 1681, Dudley refers to a “coldeness” between Mather and Cotton and urges a change of sentiment. Mather Papers 4:23, Prince Library, Rare Book & Manuscripts, Boston Public Library. One wonders if the financial issues concerning the Boston property that are outlined in the letters above had anything to do with the frostiness Dudley observed.
532. Deacon Thomas Cooper (d. 1680) was a prominent citizen of Rehoboth. James N. Arnold, Vital Records of Rehoboth (Providence, R.I., 1897), 817.
533. Rev. Samuel Angier (1655–1719) graduated from Harvard College in 1673. Early in 1677 he was approached by Gov. Hinckley to teach children in Barnstable, but he declined. He became pastor of the Rehoboth church in 1679, in the place of the late Noah Newman. A year later he married Hannah, the only daughter of Harvard president Urian Oakes. Sometime in late 1692 or early 1693, claiming poor health, Angier removed to his native Cambridge, resigning his position in Rehoboth. Eventually recovering his health, in 1696 he became pastor for the church in the part of Watertown that is now Waltham, in which capacity he served the rest of his life. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates 2:422–28; Tilton, A History of Rehoboth, 96.
534. Daniel Smith (d. 1692), deputy and magistrate of Rehoboth. Arnold, Vital Records of Rehoboth, 876; PCR, 5:223.
535. Edward Randolph (1632–1703) first came to Plymouth in 1676 on a fact-finding tour for the Crown. Snubbed in Massachusetts, he received a better reception from Gov. Josiah Winslow, who decided that cultivating Randolph’s friendship would be more in Plymouth Colony’s interests. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 193–94; ANB.
536. See the letter from James Oliver of 27 March 1677, fn. Robert Mason was Randolph’s cousin. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 193.
537. Parliament enacted the first of the Navigation Acts in 1651. These were not enforced in New England, but the Act of 1673 sought to change that with the establishment of salaried customs officers based in Boston. Edward Randolph returned to New England to become the first Collector of Customs for the port. Viola Florence Barnes, The Dominion of New England: A Study in British Policy (New York, 1923), 15–16.
538. Edward Randolph and customs agents.
539. Collation, a light meal.
540. I.e., “volleys.”
541. Not found.
542. James Scott (1649–1685), the illegitimate son of Charles II and Lucy Scott, was born during the exile of the royals. Created Duke of Monmouth and officially recognized by his father after the Restoration, he followed a military career. The Protestant party championed his succession to the throne over Charles’s Catholic brother James, Duke of York, but Charles declared Monmouth’s ineligibility and banished him to Holland in 1679. Monmouth later led the dramatic but failed attempt to overthrow James II. His forces were defeated at Sedgemoor, and the captured leader was executed 15 July 1685. Chris Cook and John Wroughton, eds., English Historical Facts 1603–1688 (Totowa, N.J., 1980), 78.
543. James, Duke of York (1633–1701), the younger brother of Charles II, converted to Catholicism in 1669. In consequence, he was forced to resign his position as Lord High Admiral on passage of the Test Act in 1673. Sent abroad by his brother to avoid public hostility generated by the Protestant party, he returned in 1679 to become Lord High Commissioner to Scotland. Surviving attempts at impeachment and assassination, he was crowned King James II in February 1685. Cook and Wroughton, English Historical Facts, 71.
544. Anthony Ashley Cooper, first Earl of Shaftsbury (1621–1683), was a member of the Convention Parliament that welcomed the restored Charles II in 1660. He later fell from a position of favor with the king and became a leader of the opposition, intriguing with the Duke of Monmouth for the latter’s succession to the throne. He helped fan anti-Catholic sentiment during the Popish Plot scare (1678) and was appointed President of Temple’s new Council in 1679, but he was then dismissed for supporting the Exclusion Bill. Failing in his attempt to impeach the Duke of York as a Popish recusant in 1680, he was named in a plot to overthrow the government in 1682. In November of that year he fled to Holland, where he died two months later. Cook and Wroughton, English Historical Facts, 62–63.
545. In the hysteria following the Popish Plot, five Catholic Lords—Arundel, Powis, Petre, Stafford, and Belasye—were charged by the Protestant party with conspiring to kill Charles II. Arrested on orders of the House of Commons, they were held in the Tower of London to await trial. William Howard, Lord Stafford, was condemned and executed on 29 December 1680; Lord Petre died in the Tower; and the other three remained imprisoned there until 1685. The plight of these unfortunate victims of the Protestant party hardened Charles against the opposition and cost the Protestant party some public support. Antonia Fraser, Royal Charles: Charles II and the Restoration (New York, 1979), 360–61, 399–400.
546. Joshua Moodey of Portsmouth.
547. Major Richard Waldron (c.1616–689) of Dover, New Hampshire, was prominent in that colony’s political and military affairs. He was killed in a Native raid during the first year of King William’s War. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:390.
548. “Forlorn hope,” or vanguard.
549. In 1672 there was a Samuel Smith in Taunton, who had a son born that year. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:132.
550. Prince’s note: “Dr Thomas Goodwin was Born at Rolesby in Norfolk on oct 5. 1600; ye eldest son of Richard & Catharine Goodwin, & sent to Cambridg Aug. 29. 1613. (his Life).” Underlining added by Prince.
552. In a letter to Robert Boyle, dated 7 July 1688, Eliot pays tribute to Cotton’s facility with Native languages, asking Boyle to remit £10 to Cotton, “who helped me much in the second edition” of Eliot’s famous Massachusett Bible. Eliot further hoped that two additional translations of his might be printed, “but I cannot commit them to the press without a careful revisal, which none but Mr. Cotton is able to help me perform.” Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:598.
553. “Two eyes see better than one.”
554. Two or three words illegible.
555. Rev. Urian Oakes (1631–1681, H.C. 1649) emigrated to New England in 1634 and returned to England in 1653. After being silenced for nonconformity in 1662, he again sailed for New England. He became pastor of the church in Cambridge and was elected fourth president of Harvard College following the troubled tenure of Leonard Hoar. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:183.
556. Rev. Thomas Shepard (1658–1685), son of the Rev. Thomas Shepard felled by smallpox, was installed in his father’s place as Charlestown’s pastor on 5 May 1680. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:481–88.
557. Samuel Wakeman (d. 1692) was one of seventeen scholars who left Harvard College without a degree in 1655. Thomas Prince expressly mentions him as one of five of that number “who afterwards made a very shining Figure in New-England.” Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:16–17; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:388.
558. Cotton wrote two tributes in verse for Thomas Walley and Noah Newman, both of whom died in 1678.
559. Rev. Zecharaiah Walker (1637–1700), another of the seventeen scholars mentioned above, was pastor of the Second Church in Woodbury, Connecticut, from 1668 until his death in 1700. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 213.
560. Jer. 6:8: “Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest my soul depart from thee; lest I make thee desolate, a land not inhabited.”
561. There is no record of this event in Plymouth colony, town or church records.
562. In the summer of 1680, Gov. Winslow received word from Secretary of State Henry Coventry that the King would be disposed, upon proper application, to grant Plymouth Colony a charter. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 194–95.
563. Despite repeated appeals from Barnstable during more than a year of negotiation, Peter Thatcher declined the pulpit there, settling instead at Milton in 1681. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:370–79.
564. Regarding Thomas Crosby, see the letter from John Freeman et al. of 31 July 1672. By this time Crosby was apparently enjoying his new career as a merchant and had no interest in returning to the ministry.
565. Elizabeth Saltonstall (1668–1725) was the daughter of Nathaniel and Elizabeth Ward Saltonstall. She was first married to John Denison (1666–1689), her brother Gurdon’s classmate and the settled minister in Ipswich. Denison died in 1689, while Elizabeth was pregnant with their son, John. Elizabeth married Rowland Cotton in September 1692 and had eleven more children. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:271–72, 277–86, 323–26.
566. Not identified.
567. Her brothers at that time were Gurdon (b. 1666), Richard (b. 1672), Nathaniel (b. 1674) and John (b. 1678).
568. Probably Elizabeth Ring Mayo (1652–c. 1691), who married William Mayo (1654–1691) of Eastham c. 1680. Clarence Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, 1865), 500.
569. John Alden (c.1599–1687), the Pilgrim made famous by Longfellow’s poem, helped establish the town of Duxbury in the early 1630s and resided there the rest of his life. Originally a cooper by trade, he also served for many years as an assistant in the colony government and was active in the church. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 232–33.
570. Rev. John Holmes died on 24 December 1675. See the letter of 3 January 1676.
571. Ichabod Wiswall (1637–1700) was another of the five “shining Figure[s]” from the nongraduating Harvard class of 1655 (see the letter from Samuel Wakeman of 16 April 1680, n. 1). He taught school in Dorchester for three or four years before moving to Duxbury in 1676 to take the place of the late Rev. Holmes. In 1689 he went to England as an agent for the colony to secure a new charter. He failed in the attempt, largely due to Plymouth’s inability to furnish necessary funds, and to the efforts of Massachusetts agent Increase Mather, who sought to have Plymouth joined to his own colony. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:16, 560–61.
572. Josiah Standish (c. 1633–1690) of Duxbury, son of the famous Captain Myles Standish, eventually moved to Connecticut, and died there. Robert S. Wakefield, ed., and Russell L. Warner, comp., Mayflower Families through Five Generations, vol. 14 (Plymouth, Mass., 1997), 6.
573. No address or endorsement, but Cotton is the most likely recipient.
574. Date added by Prince. Prince’s note: “Before Gov. Winslows Death on Dec. 18, 1680.”
575. Prince’s note: “Then minister at Rehoboth (settled in 1679 Dceasd [Removd?] in 1693) Bristol cwancea [Swansea], & settled in 1681.”
576. After King Philip’s War, Massachusetts and Plymouth quarreled over the right to Philip’s lands in the vicinity of Mount Hope (modern-day Bristol, Rhode Island). Plymouth, especially, needed the land in order to settle the costs of the war. Gov. Winslow’s policy of cultivating Edward Randolph apparently paid off: even as the colony rejoiced in its prospects for a charter, Plymouth celebrated the Crown grant that had awarded the entire disputed territory to the colony earlier in the year. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 194–95.
577. To Thomas Hinckley, 13 January 1682.
578. General Court of Plymouth to King James II, 4 June 1685.
579. From Cotton Mather, 31 January 1687.
580. To John Chipman, 9 March 1688.
581. From Cotton Mather, 11 April 1688; To Increase Mather, 9 July 1688; To Increase Mather, 10 and 21 September 1688.
582. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1855–61) (hereafter PCR), 6:259; George D. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony: A History of New Plymouth 1620–1691 (New Haven, Conn., 1966), 234–40.
583. To Cotton Mather, 19 April 1681; To Cotton Mather, 6 January 1685.
584. To Thomas Hinckley, 13 January 1682.
585. From James Keith, 6 March 1683; To Cotton Mather, 11 March 1684.
586. From Bithia Sandy, 27 February 1684.
587. For example, from James Keith, 15 February 1686.
588. To Rowland Cotton, 2 September 1687.
589. From William Brattle, 16 July 1687.
590. To Cotton Mather, 19 April 1681.
591. To John Chipman, 25 September 1688; To Robert Pierpont, October 1688; From John and Ruth Chipman, 1 October 1688; To John Chipman, 5 October 1688.
592. Not found.
593. John and Joanna’s son, Josiah (1680–1756, H.C. 1698), was born 8 January 1680. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 4:398–402.
594. Increase Mather’s wife, Maria, had Hannah (1680–1700) on 30 May 1680. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:437.
595. Possibly Daniel Epps (1623–1693), who emigrated to Ipswich, Massachusetts, in 1637. In 1674 his son Samuel (1647–1685, H.C. 1669) moved to London, where he died in 1685. Alternatively, the reference may be to Samuel’s brother Daniel (1649–1722, H.C. 1669), of Salem. Father or brother may have been in regular communication with Samuel and therefore familiar with London news. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint Baltimore, Md., 1990), 2:125; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:264–67.
596. In early 1679 the first general elections in eighteen years brought to Parliament not the new wave of support for which Charles II had hoped, but a government enlivened by an outspoken and determined Whig faction. Charles prorogued the March 1679 Parliament in May. The next Parliament, scheduled to meet in October of the same year, was determined to debate an Exclusion bill, aimed at denying the Catholic Duke of York any place in the Royal succession. Charles prorogued this Parliament before it ever met, and it did not sit until 21 October 1680. Chris Cook and John Wroughton, eds., English Historical Facts 1603–1688 (Totowa, N.J., 1980), 88.
597. William Howard, Lord Stafford, was executed 29 December 1680.
598. The “Oxford Parliament” sat for only eight days, 21–28 March. The king had hoped to temper the fractiousness of the resentful Whig members by moving the Parliament to the Royalist-dominated university. Instead, the Parliament ended in bitterness and dismissal. Antonia Fraser, Royal Charles: Charles II and the Restoration (New York, 1979), 400–407.
599. James Keith may have given the Plymouth election sermon in 1681, but it was not published. William Brinsmead gave the Massachusetts election sermon in 1681 [Evans 298]. Charles Evans, American Bibliography (New York, 1941–1959), 1:51.
600. Noah Newman (1631–1676) was the minister in Rehoboth. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 149.
601. William Bradford (1624–1704) fought in King Philip’s War and served as representative, assistant and deputy governor in Plymouth Colony. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:231–32.
602. Thomas Cushman, elder of the Plymouth Church since 1649.
603. Mather probably aided Cotton’s son John (1661–1706, H.C. 1681), then completing his years at Harvard. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:212–15.
604. John Cooke (1620–1695) emigrated with his father, Francis, on the Mayflower and served as deacon of the Plymouth church. Dissenting from the church as a Baptist, he moved to Dartmouth in 1676 as the first settled minister and established the first Baptist church in that community. In 1673, he represented Dartmouth in the General Court and was a chief magistrate. The Plymouth Church Records do not mention his excommunication, which Stratton believes dates to “sometime between 1656 and 1658.” Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 98–100.
605. John Rayner (d. 1669) graduated from Magdalen College (Oxford) in 1625, emigrated to New England in 1635, and served the Plymouth church for eighteen years. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:514.
606. Dr. John Clarke (1609–1676) emigrated to Boston from Suffolk, England, in 1637 after receiving his degree from Cambridge. After practicing medicine in Boston for two years, he settled in Newport (the Rhode Island colony) as the first minister of the First Baptist Church. He also served as an assistant and as treasurer of the colony, as an agent for Rhode Island in England from 1651–1663 and as deputy governor of the colony from 1669–1672. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 56.
607. Possibly William Russel’s Brief Account of the Proceedings Against the Six Popish Priests, (London[?], 1680) [Early English Books, 2:1309; Wing L3484].
608. “Old England.”
609. For Plymouth’s elder, John Chipman, see the letter of 9 March 1688.
610. The class of 1681 included Cotton’s son John IIi and Samuel Mitchel, John Hastings, Noadiah Russell, James Pierpont, John Davie, Samuel Russell, William Denison and Joseph Eliot. The questions are reprinted in Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:210–11.
611. Josiah Winslow (1629–1680) was the son of Plymouth’s prominent settler Gov. Edward Winslow. Winslow was one of the students who left Harvard in 1642 in protest over the changed length of study. Josiah served as a representative to the General Court, an assistant, and commander-in-chief of the United Forces in King Philip’s War. He was also one of the commissioners of the United Colonies of New England. Elected governor in 1673 after Thomas Prence’s death, Winslow served until his own passing on 23 December 1680. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 85, 102, 109–11, 113; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:16.
612. Possibly Elizabeth Knight Stoughton, the widow of Israel Stoughton, who died in England in 1644, and the mother of Gov. William Stoughton. Torrey does not list a birth date for her, but Savage indicates that “the widow lived long.” Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:213; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:194–95; Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, Md., 1865), 715.
613. After dissolving the Oxford Parliament in March 1681, Charles was in no mood to consider seating another, especially since Louis XIV had just agreed to grant him a hefty subsidy, allowing him to do without Parliament in the immediate future. Fraser, Royal Charles, 407.
614. Nathaniel Gookin (1656–1692, H.C. 1675) was the minister in Cambridge (1682–1692). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:474–80.
615. Torrey lists a marriage between Robert Sanderson (d. 1693) and Elizabeth Kingswill (d. 1695, aged 78) on 24 August 1681 in Boston. Savage confirms that a Robert Saunderson of Hampton and Watertown married a widow named Elizabeth and served as a deacon in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 649; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:22–23.
616. George Shove (1634–1687, H.C. 1650, 1652) was the minister in Taunton (1665–1687). Weis, Colonial Clergy, 187.
617. James Keith (1643–1719) was the minister in Bridgewater (1663–1719). Weis, Colonial Clergy, 120.
618. Thomas Hinckley married widow Mary Smith Glover (c. 1650–1703) in 1660 in Barnstable. Her daughter, Ann Glover Rawson (d. 1730), and son-in-law, William Rawson (1651–1728), had six children who died young before 1681: Ann (b. 1674), Wilson (b. 1675), Margaret (b. 1676), Edward (b. 1677), Edward (b. 1678), Rachel (b. October 1679) and Dorothy (b. 8 August 1681). The family Bible indicates that all of the above children died in infancy, so Cotton is probably referring to the newborn Dorothy in this letter. Of their twenty children born 1674–1698, fifteen died young. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:511; 2:262; Sullivan S. Rawson, The Rawson Family (Boston, 1849), 14.
619. Edward Jackson was born c. 1604 in London, emigrated to New England in 1643 and purchased Thomas Mayhew’s old farm in Cambridge Village, now called Newton. With two wives he had nineteen children. He also donated a large tract of land in Billerica to Harvard College. Jackson died on 17 July 1681. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:527–28.
620. Urian Oakes (1631–1681, H.C. 1649) died on 25 July 1681 after battling a “malignant fever” for several days. Oakes had been born in England, emigrated to New England in 1634 as a child and returned to England in 1653. After being silenced for non-conformity in 1662 during the Restoration, Oakes again sailed for New England. At his death, he was pastor of the church in Cambridge and president of Harvard College. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:173–85.
621. “Oh Sadness!”
622. Not found.
623. King Charles had previously demanded that Massachusetts send agents to England who had been authorized to negotiate changes to the colony’s charter. Colony officials had stalled the process by neglecting to do so. Exasperated, in October 1681 the Lords of Trade threatened Massachusetts with a writ of quo warranto if it did not send fully empowered agents immediately. Viola Florence Barnes, The Dominion of New England: A Study in British Colonial Policy (New Haven, Conn., 1923), 20.
624. “New England.”
625. Massachusetts persistently ignored or thwarted the “Navigation Laws” passed by Parliament to regulate trade. Randolph, the court-appointed customs agent, enjoyed no cooperation from colonial authorities in his attempts to collect duties or enforce regulations.
626. “Old England.”
627. In October 1679, James, Duke of York was packed off to Scotland as High Commissioner, in large part to remove his abrasive presence from the political hotbed of the Court. He did well in a difficult situation and returned to England in June 1682. Fraser, Royal Charles, 384, 418.
628. Edward Ting was 71 when he died on 28 December 1681 in Dunstable. He had been a merchant and brewer in Boston, married Mary Sears before 1640 and had fourteen children. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:356–57; Torrey, New England Marriages, 762.
629. Apparently after repeated warnings, Dunham, “failing by intemperance,” refused to attend church and was “offensive” when the gathered church scolded him at a “private chh-meeting.” Even after the congregants “exercis[ed] patience towards him for 2 Sabbaths more,” Dunham refused to attend and, more importantly, was “not humbling himselfe.” He was excommunicated, although two years later he “was reconciled to the chh.” In 1688, Dunham “was burned to death in his house 24th Jan.” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 157, 252; Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts, to the Year 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 134.
630. Cotton’s notes for 1682 suffered serious damage, but he wrote “[ ]son & his wife were called forth, [ ]onciliation, the brethren [ ] for a full [ ]manifestation.” CSM, 22:250.
631. Not found.
632. There had been anti-government revolts in 1679 and 1680, and the situation in Scotland remained volatile.
633. “New England in Old England.”
634. See 13 January 1682.
635. The Dutch were naturally alarmed by Charles’s close relationship with Louis XIV and hoped to clarify the ostensibly Protestant king’s position.
636. “As they were.”
637. Hezekiah Usher (d. 1676) was a Boston merchant and an early bookseller and publisher. Cotton may also be referring to Usher’s eldest son, Hezekiah (1639–1696), who may have been in Lynn at this time and renting his Boston house. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:362–63; Isaiah Thomas, The History of Printing in America, ed. Marcus McCorison (1810; reprint, New York, 1970), 183–84.
638. “Oh! Old house.”
639. “If you are well, it is well, and I also am well.”
640. “With a hot and hurried pen.”
641. In his “Account of the Cotton Family,” Josiah Cotton prefaces this letter, “I shall next Transcribe some Passages out of 2 Letters from my Uncle Walker to my Father; One Jocose, ye Other: serious Dated 1683 & 1686.” The second follows below.
642. Josiah is Joanna Cotton’s brother, son of Bray and Elizabeth Rosseter. He married Sarah Sherman before 1677 and had moved to Guilford, Connecticut, from Killingsworth by 1682 at the latest. Josiah served as a representative from 1701 to 1711 and died on 31 January 1716. See 24 September 1669. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:577–78.
643. Not found.
644. Henry Wise (1655–1684) lived in Guilford, Connecticut. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4: 614; Torrey, New England Marriages, 830.
645. Possibly Dr. Isaac Waldron (d. 1683), who lived and practiced in Portsmouth, Bristol and Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:389.
646. Augustine Williams, of Stonington and Killingsworth, Connecticut, died before 1699. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:559; Torrey, New England Marriages, 818.
647. Cotton Mather authored the 1683 almanac The Boston Ephemeris (Boston, 1683) [Evans 351]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:58.
648. Thomas Crittenden (1667–1754) was the son of Abraham and Susanna Grigson Crittenden. He married Abigail Hull (1669–1710) in 1690 and lived in Guilford, Connecticut. Savage prefers “Cruttenden.” Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:481.
649. Elizabeth Cotton (1663–1743), John and Joanna’s second child and eldest daughter, married Rev. James Alling (1657–1696, H.C. 1679), the minister of Salisbury, in 1688. She was still living at home unmarried when Rosseter enquired after her in this letter. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:506.
650. Mather’s letter includes news of events that occurred in September 1682, so the date is more likely 28 February 1682/83.
651. Not found.
652. Several Bible verses refer to David’s affliction, including 2 Samuel 16 and Psalms 132.
653. Matt. 10:29–30: “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.”
654. “When well, we all give correct advice to the sick.”
655. Isa. 33:24: “And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: the people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity.”
656. The king’s attack on the Massachusetts charter was part of a much larger pattern. Invoking quo warrento often on minor pretexts, the Crown managed to reissue charters to a number of towns, including York, Colchester, Lyme Regis and even London. In each case, the king was given the power to veto the elections of officers. The result was the election of Tory sheriffs in London in September 1682. Fraser, Royal Charles, 422, 425.
657. Cotton Mather served as his father’s assistant at Second Church in Boston (North Church) beginning in February 1681. He was called by North Church in December 1682, on 8 January1683 and on 3 August 1684. He was finally ordained after “many Days of Fasting and Prayer” on 13 May 1685. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:7–8.
658. Not found.
659. Not found.
660. William Brett emigrated to Duxbury, Plymouth Colony, from Kent by 1645 and was one of the original settlers of Bridgewater. Brett served as an elder in Keith’s church, and occasionally preached in his absence, until he died in December 1681. Edward Mitchell, History of Bridgewater, Massachusetts (Bridgewater, Mass., 1897), 44, 120.
661. Keith is probably referring to disputes within Cotton’s congregation, which Cotton later blamed on Satan, at least publicly: “Satan is always busy to make divisions in the ches, some differences fell out about this time in the chh . . .” In January 1683, Cotton was unwilling even to write about the dispute in the church records: “a church-meeting attended in the Pastors absence, after the conference, in which the Propositions made by the Pastour the meeting before were read, but the agitation & Issue of that meeting had best be buried in silence.” By March 1684, Cotton agreed to seek the advice of neighboring churches. See 11 March 1684 below. CSM, 22:159, 251, 253.
662. Not found.
663. These seem to have been potential contributions to Increase Mather’s work in progress on “Remarkable Providences.” Neither the dead brothers nor the Southworths seem to have made it into Mather’s published work, An Essay for the Recording of Illustrious Providences. See 13 December 1683 for a story that did.
664. Captain Michael Pierce (1615–1676) was killed along with fifty settlers and twenty English-allied Natives in the “Swamp Fight” that took place in Rehoboth on 26 March 1676. Noah Newman’s letter to John Cotton describes the fight and lists the Plymouth Colony dead. See the above letter of 27 March 1676. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:430.
665. Constant Southworth died on 11 March 1679 and his wife, Elizabeth Collier Southworth, died in 1682. Constant Southworth’s mother married Plymouth’s Gov. William Bradford in 1623, and Constant served in many government positions, including those of treasurer and assistant; he also served in the Duxbury military company. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 355–56; Savage, Genalogical Dictionary, 4:143.
666. I ncrease Mather, An Essay for the Recording of Illustrious Providences (Boston, 1684) [Evans 372]. The incident in question is probably described in chapter 3, pp. 74–75, in which lightning severely damaged a house in Marshfield and killed one person in 1658. The identity of “Mr W” is unclear.
667. In the last years of his life, Charles II, the would-be absolute king, worked to quash any perceived challenge to his authority.
668. Samuel Annesly (1620[?]–1696), eminent Non-conformist divine, was named “Lecturer of St. Paul’s” by Oliver Cromwell and briefly led the church at St. Giles, Cripplegate, before being ejected in 1662. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols. (London, 1885–1900) (hereafter DNB).
669. This represented more news concerning the reluctant surrender of London’s charter. In June 1684, the justices of King’s Bench ruled that the city’s charter would be placed in the king’s hands. Fraser, Royal Charles, 422.
670. The “malcontents” are probably the “Kurak,” former soldiers, lesser nobility and outlaws angry about the Hapsburg inaction against the Ottoman invaders. Persecuted by Royal Hungary, they revolted in desperation, with Ottoman support. The Kurak of Transylvania were commanded by Imre Thököly, a young nobleman who led them to victory and a favorable armistice with Emperor Leopold I in 1682. Although he temporarily won autonomy for Transylvania, he was not a king. Peter F. Sugar et al., A History of Hungary (Bloomington, Ind., 1990), 115–16.
671. John Cotton transcribed Mather’s news in his letter to Thomas Hinckley of 27 December 1683. In Cotton’s transcription, the missing line reads, “of Europe is longed for westward by many, more than the day by the morning-watchers.”
672. Emboldened by Thököly’s successes against the Hapsburgs, Ottoman forces marched from Istanbul to invade Vienna. The famous siege began on 14 July 1683, but an alarmed Papacy brokered a holy alliance comprised of its own forces and troops from Venice, Poland and the Holy Roman Empire. The Ottomans broke off the siege on 12 September, with heavy losses. Sugar, History of Hungary, 116.
673. Massachusetts had purchased the Province of Maine from the heirs of Sir Ferdinando Georges in 1680.
674. Beverly’s minister, John Hale (1636–1700, H.C. 1657), preached the election sermon in May 1684 on Judg. 3:1–2: “Now these are the nations which the Lord left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof.” Sibley suggests that the sermon was printed by order of the General Court, but Evans wrote that it was not printed. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:509–20; Evans, American Bibliography, 1:59 [Evans 360].
675. The “solid hand” is Cotton Mather’s; the whole letter is a direct quotation from the previous letter, Cotton Mather to John Cotton, 20 December 1683.
676. Thomas Prince notes, “suppose 1684.” This letter appears to be Cotton’s transcription of another correspondent’s letter.
677. Prince notes, “1683/4 Feb .6. Mr Hampden 40, 000.”
678. Prince notes, “Feb. 14 Sr S. Bernardiston. 10, 000.”
679. Prince notes, “in 1675 & 6,” referring presumably to King Philip’s War.
680. Prince crossed out “Eliot” and substituted “Hook.” Prince is referring to William Hooke’s New England’s Teares, for Old England’s Feares Preached in a Sermon July 23, 1640, Being a Day of Publike Humiliation, Appointed by the Churches In Behalfe of our Native Countery in Time of Feared Dangers (London, 1640).
681. Mary Smith Glover Hinckley (1650[?]–1703), Gov. Thomas Hinckley’s wife.
682. Prince’s note: “This was Uncle & Aunt Rawson’s 1st child, wc. died at its Grandfather Hinckley’s, I suppose abt. ye 2 of Dec. 1683.” Grindall Rawson (1659–1715, H.C. 1678) and Susanna Wilson Rawson’s first child, Edward, was born 24 May1683 and died 21 November 1683. Vital Records of Mendon, Massachusetts (Boston, 1920), 491; Vital Records of Medfield, Massachusetts (Boston, 1903), 86, 168; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3: 511.
683. Ps. 30: “I will extol thee, O Lord; for thou hast lifted me up, and hast not made my foes to rejoice over me. O Lord my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me. O Lord, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit . . . Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness . . .”
684. Ps. 42:11: “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? & why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, & my God.”
685. Not found, but the church records indicate that the letter was composed in late June 1683, a draft was read before the church on July 8, and the letter was sent after the church members agreed. Sandy was “guilty of fornication with him, whom afterward she married.” After being “Admonished by the Elders in their name for her sinne” by letter, Sandy sent the above reply. The church heard the letter read aloud on 2 May 1684 and “well accepted” her repentance. CSM, 22:252, 255.
686. Benjamin Woodbridge (d. 1710) attended Harvard College but never graduated. He was ordained in Windsor, Connecticut Colony, where he served from 1670–81, and he served as the first settled minister in Bristol, Rhode Island Colony, from 1681 to 1686. He also ministered to congregations in Kittery (later Maine), in Portsmouth and in Newcastle (later New Hampshire), finally settling in Medford in 1698. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 234.
687. Not found.
688. “If I am the judge.”
689. Evidently, the disputes that Cotton and Keith discussed in their letters of 6 March 1683 were not yet resolved. In January 1684, Cotton’s church records reveal that “the church met & after the conference the Pastor propounded some grievances which he desired redresse of or release from office-worke, the Elder shewed discontent, & 1 or 2 more of the Bretheren, & there was no vote or issue put to anything propounded.” By 7 March, the magistrates were involved and requested that Cotton appeal to neighboring churches for advice, which he did. After calling for a fast day to pray about their “present trouble,” Lieutenant Ephraim Morton criticized Cotton, claiming that “he heard soe much in publick of differences, & that things were blowne up more that he heard all the weeke besides.” CSM, 22:253–54.
690. Increase Mather was a Fellow at Harvard, 1675–1685. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 136.
691. Rowland Cotton (1667–1722, H.C. 1685) was at Harvard College. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:323–26.
692. Jonathan Tuckney; see 5 March 1681.
693. Not found.
694. With Tory sheriffs now in place, the Crown could more effectively persecute dissenters.
695. This was the infamous Rye House Plot, a scheme to assassinate both the king and his brother, the Duke of York, and seize London. What made this attempted coup different from the others was the involvement of high-level Whigs, including the Duke of Monmouth. The plot was betrayed, and York and the Tories used the incident and subsequent trials to flay the Whigs politically.
696. William, Lord Russell (1639–1683), a member of the “Country” party that opposed Charles II and one of the Rye House plotters. He was executed on 21 July 1683.
697. Colonel Algernon Sydney (1622–1682), long an ardent “Commonwealthsman” and opponent of the Stuarts. He was implicated in the plot and executed on 7 December 1682.
698. See 28 February 1683.
699. Cotton’s son John Cotton (1661–1706, H.C. 1681) was at this time the temporary settled minister of Exeter, later New Hampshire. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:212–15.
700. Samuel Cotton, John and Joanna’s ninth child, was born on 10 February 1678 and died of scarlet fever on 23 December 1682. Plymouth Vital Records, 2.
701. Joan Hart descended from the Rosseter Family; see 8 November 1685. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:577–78.
702. See 15 January 1680.
703. Ps. 74: “O God, why hast thou cast us off for ever? why doth thine anger smoke against the sheep of thy pasture? Remember thy congregation, which thou hast purchased of old; the rod of thine inheritance, which thou hast redeemed; this mount Zion, wherein thou hast dwelt. Lift up thy feet unto the perpetual desolations; even all that the enemy hath done wickedly in the sanctuary . . .”
704. Not found.
705. Joshua Moodey was under a kind of house arrest, ostensibly for non-conformity, and was prohibited from preaching. Gov. Edward Cranfield really wanted to punish Moodey for his meddling in tax collection and political matters and used laws regarding administering the sacrament to do it. Most recently, Moodey had used the pulpit to admonish a church member who bowed to Cranfield’s pressure to swear an oath after trying to evade laws of trade. Moodey was released from prison only on the condition that he agree to leave New Hampshire, which he did. Everett Stackpole, History of New Hampshire (New York, 1916), 1:141–47; Nathaniel Adams, Annals of Portsmouth (Portsmouth, N.H., 1825), 78–80; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:367–80.
706. Several illegible words.
707. Seaborn Cotton (1633–1686, H.C. 1651) was the minister in Hampton, later New Hampshire, from 1657 to 1686. Sibley suggests that Cranfield threatened to ask Cotton to give him the sacrament “according to the Liturgy” but did not because Cotton left for Boston. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:286–93.
708. John Cotton (1661–1706, H.C. 1678) was preaching in Exeter, later New Hampshire, from 1684 to 1690 during Cranfield’s attempts to enforce conformity in the colonies. According to Sibley, Cotton joined an armed protest against Cranfield. Despite this activism, Moodey reassured Cotton that his son was not in danger of arrest. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:212–15.
709. Darkened, illegible line.
710. Moodey’s first wife, Martha Collins (1639–1674), died before 1674. He married Mary Greenleaf (b. 1676) in 1696. Torrey, New England Marriages, 515.
711. Not found.
712. Eph. 4:1–2: I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2: With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love.
713. Not found.
714. Lawrence Lane can still be found off Cheapside, just east of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.
715. See 5 March 1681.
716. Not found. In left margin: “(as far as I at present remember) upon the 10th or 11th of that Month.”
717. Ps. 74:6,7: “But now they break down the carved work thereof at once with axes and hammers. They have cast fire into thy sanctuary, they have defiled by casting down the dwelling place of thy name to the ground.”
718. Twelfth verse: “For God is my King of old, working salvation in the midst of the earth.”
719. Joel 2, chapter 2: “A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations.”
720. Third chapter: “A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.”
721. Seaborn Cotton.
722. Samuel Whiting (1633–1713), pastor in Billerica, was the eldest son of the minister Samuel Whiting of Skirbeck, Lincolnshire, England. The Whitings emigrated to New England with John Wheelwright in 1636. Samuel Whiting Jr. graduated from Harvard in 1653 and in 1658 began preaching in Billerica, where he remained until his death. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:363–66. Vital Records of Billerica, Massachusetts to the Year 1850 (Boston, 1908), 200, 403.
723. Henry Wainwright.
724. Probably John Bailey (1644–1697), minister at Blackburn, Lancashire, who emigrated to Boston in 1683. Bailey served as minister to Third Church, Boston, the church in Watertown and First Church, Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:94.
725. Thomas King (d. 1691) was a ruling elder in the Second Church of Scituate. King had emigrated to New England in 1635 at the age of 21. Samuel Deane, History of Scituate, Massachusetts from its First Settlement to 1831 (Boston, 1831), 90; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:26.
726. Thomas Mighell (1639–1689<bl1>) graduated from Harvard in 1663, taught grammar school in Roxbury (1666–1668) and preached in Milton (1669–1677) before going to the Second Church of Scituate in 1680. He assisted Rev. William Witherell beginning in September 1680 and refused ordination until Witherell died in April 1684, even though the church had offered him a call as early as July 1681. Mighell was ordained in the Scituate church on 15 October 1684. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:144–46.
727. Probably William Hoskins (1647–1730), who was born in Plymouth, married Sarah Casewell (1658–after 1726) in Taunton and lived in that community. Or, his father, William (d. 1695), and his second wife, Ann Haynes. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:466.
728. Most likely Thomas Barnes (d. 1706), who according to Weis came to Swansea as early as 1669, was ordained by the Second Baptist Church in 1693 and married Elizabeth Baker King in 1694. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 28; Torrey, New England Marriages, 44.
729. Mrs. Myles is probably the widow of minister John Myles (c. 1621–1683). Myles emigrated to New England in 1662 after he was silenced following the Act of Conformity, and first organized the Baptist church in Rehoboth. The Plymouth Court permitted the Baptist church to establish the town of Swansea in October 1667, and Myles was the beloved pastor there until he died in February 1683. Myles’s successor, Samuel Luther, was ordained in July 1685. Cotton disliked the Swansea Baptist church, as his note in the Plymouth Church Records illustrates: “Two of our members who lived at Swanzey sent to us to desire their dismissions to the chh there, the chh met Nov:18 & agreed the Elders should in their name returne answer in the Negative, because the brethren of Swanzey renounced communion with us or soe much as to be present when wee administered Infant-Baptism & did rebaptize our chh-seed.” See 10 January 1671. CSM, 22:155. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 148, 130; Otis Olney Wright, History of Swansea, Massachusetts, 1667–1917 (Swansea, Mass., 1917), 101–4.
730. Prince’s note: “i.e. Edward Rossiter of Taunton in England see his Letter of March. 28. 1682.”
731. This begins another letter in a different, unknown hand, immediately following the above.
732. Prince’s note: “1st time—Feb. 8. 84/5.”
733. Torn; part of line missing.
734. Torn; most of line missing.
735. This petition is printed in “The Hinckley Papers,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 137–38. The copy we read was in Cotton’s hand.
736. Cotton refers to the problems with Plymouth’s charter, to which he will refer frequently in many of the letters that follow.
737. The abortive Monmouth Rebellion ended with the rout of the Duke of Monmouth’s forces at Sedgemoor on 6 July 1685.
738. Ford, Lord Gray of Werk (d.1701), fled England upon the discovery of the Rye House Plot. He commanded the rebel cavalry at Sedgemoor, but they failed in their crucial task of surprising the Royalist camp. Gray and his cavalry became confused and disordered and all but fled the battlefield. The suspicions of treachery may have been forgiven, for Grey was indeed spared in return for his confession and cooperation. Under William III he regained his fortunes, being raised to Earl of Tankerville in 1695, and First Lord of the Treasury in 1699. DNB.
739. Mather added this sentence into the margin without precisely signaling where it should be in the body of the letter.
740. Archibald Campbell, 9th Earl of Argyll (d. 1685), had already escaped likely execution in England for his opposition to Charles II and fled to Holland. When Monmouth raised his rebellion, Argyll took charge of an invasion of Scotland, which quickly dissolved. With his followers dispersing, he was captured and imprisoned. DNB.
741. Argyll was beheaded at Edinburgh on 30 June 1685.
742. Probably An Account of the Most Remarkable fights and skirmishes between His Majesties Forces, and the late rebels . . . likewise the execution of the said late Earl, and Rumbold. (London, 1685), Early English Books, 6:4374 [Wing A371].
743. The above-referenced account of Argyle’s beheading does not include this “head-rolling” story, but his head was “affixed on the Tolbooth.” Account of the Most Remarkable fights and skirmishes (London, 1685), 8.
744. Colonel Percy Kirke (1646[?]–1691) had served under Monmouth in 1672 but was in the Royalist camp during the Rebellion. He was instrumental in the capture and supression of the rebels in Somerset after Sedgemoor and during the “Bloody Assizes” that followed. Although a hard man, the atrocities credited to him are largely fictitious or exaggerated. DNB.
745. Emery suggests that Joan Harte was the widow of Nicholas Harte (d. 1654), who “was a merchant residing in Taunton in 1643, and afterward in Boston, and Warwick and Portsmouth, R.I.” Shove wrote that she had lived in Rhode Island. If this is the correct Joan Hart, she died shortly after this letter was written, in 1685. Cotton noted that he had admitted Hart into the church: “Mris Joane Hart, recommended & dismissed to us from the church at Taunton.” Emery and Savage also suggest that Hart was the daughter of Edward Rosseter, one of the earliest settlers of Taunton and the uncle of Cotton’s wife, Joanna. Joanna’s father, Bryan Rosseter, and Edward were brothers. See the letter of 20 March 1684, which suggests that Hart was then briefly living with the Cottons. Samuel Hopkins Emery, A History of Taunton, Massachusetts from its Settlement to the Present Time (Syracuse, N.Y., 1893), 740; CSM, 22:257; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:577–78.
746. For Shove, see the letter of 6 October 1673.
747. Prince’s note: “suppose this Letter was wrote Dec. 21. 1685 or 86.”
748. Not found.
749. Probably Sarah Howland Dennis (d. 1712), the widow of Robert Dennis (d. 1691) of Yarmouth and Newport, Rhode Island. Family histories claim that both Robert and Sarah were Quakers. This could instead refer to Mary Lathrop Crowell Dennis, the wife of James Dennis of Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 215, 216.
750. Richard Lord (1636–1685) was married to Mary Smith (1643–1702) and lived in Hartford, Connecticut. He served as a representative for several years. Savage noted that he was “lost at sea in November 1685” but does not describe the mutiny. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:115–16.
751. Cotton Mather had two younger sisters who shared names with Cotton’s daughters; both Elizabeth Mather (b. 1667) and Sarah Mather (1671–1746) were born after Cotton’s daughters, Elizabeth (b. 1663) and Sarah (b. 1670).
752. Mather probably sent Samuel Danforth’s New England Almanac for the Year of Our Lord 1686. . . . (Cambridge, 1685). The first printing of the almanac was made in November 1685 and so carried the year 1685 as its publication date; the second printing was in March, so it carried 1686 instead. Mather clearly sent several copies of the first printing. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:68 [Evans 403, 404].
753. Elizabeth Cotton was John and Joanna’s second child and their eldest daughter. She was born in Guilford, Connecticut, on 6 August 1663. Although Mather intimates in this letter that Elizabeth may have experienced saving grace in late 1685, she was not admitted as a full church member until 1688. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 2; CSM, 22:261.
754. Proverbs, chapter 8, 17.
755. Josiah Cotton’s manuscript is imprecise as to its date. He prefaced this letter and the one immediately following: “To ffinish this sheet I shall add some strokes out of a letter or two, from my Uncle Cotton to my Father, ye last of wch is Dated 1685/6 Which phaps might be ye last he sent—One of his Lettrs concerning my Broo Jno.” Josiah Cotton, Manuscript “Account of the Cotton Family,” Houghton Library, Harvard University.
756. Seaborn Cotton is referring to Cotton’s son John, his nephew.
757. Thomas Jenner (d. 1699), ship captain from Charlestown, also served as artillery company captain. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:544.
758. This underlining is Mather’s.
759. Christopher Love (1618–1651) was a minister in London. His final publication was posthumous: Grace, the Truth and Growth and different Degrees . . . sum and substance of XV sermons . . . they being his Last . . . to which is added a funeral sermon (London, 1677) [Wing L3159B]. Early English Books, 1641–1700, 2:989.
760. See 21 December 1685.
761. See 10 October 1680.
762. Samuel Freeman was an elder at Eastham.
763. Margaret Jackson married Abraham Jackson Jr. in January 1685 in Plymouth, removed from Eastham, was dismissed from the Eastham church and joined the Plymouth church in full communion. CSM, 22:257.
764. Not found.
765. Ps. 26:24: “He that hateth dissembleth with his lips, and layeth up deceit within him.”
766. Ps. 25:26: “A righteous man falling down before the wicked is as a troubled fountain and a corrupt spring.”
767. Ps. 52:2–4: “Thy tongue deviseth mischiefs; like a sharp razor, working deceitfully. Thou lovest evil more than good; and lying rather than to speak righteousness. Selah. Thou lovest all devouring words, O thou deceitful tongue.”
768. Prov. 29:9: “If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest.”
769. The second “wednesday” is in John Cotton’s hand.
770. Not found.
771. Not found.
772. Probably Judge Nicholas and Sarah Clark Gilman of Exeter, New Hampshire.
773. Purging and bloodletting were common healing practices in early New England. Joanna Cotton’s medical training would have prompted her to instruct her sons to perform regular purges. Bloodletting was a more extreme treatment and generally performed only by practicing doctors. J. Worth Estes, “Therapeutic Practice in Colonial New England,” Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, 1620–1820, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980): 289–383.
774. Signature is in another hand, probably Thomas Prince’s.
775. Probably Roger Adams (d. 1714), husband of Mary Baker (1653–1710), who lived in Roxbury. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:15.
776. Elizabeth Cotton, Rowland’s sister.
777. Increase Mather.
778. Probably Seaborn Cotton (1633–1686), the groom’s uncle.
779. Inserted word illegible.
780. Cotton Mather married Abigail Phillips (1670–1702) on 4 May 1686 in Charlestown.
781. Not found.
782. John Cotton, Rowland’s brother, was preaching in Exeter with his uncle Seaborn Cotton. James Alling (1657–1696, H.C. 1679) was preaching in Salisbury. Evidently, the men were traveling together to attend Cotton Mather’s wedding. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 62–63, 19.
783. Possibly Eliezur Russell, a Boston goldsmith, who seems to have died unmarried in 1690, since his will left his whole estate to his niece, Rebecca, his brother Jonathan’s daughter, in Barnstable. Abigail Moody was the daughter of Rev. Joshua Moody and Martha Collins Moody, then living in Portsmouth. She died, also apparently unmarried, in March 1687. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:590.
784. Josiah Cotton included this transcription in his manuscript “Account of the Cotton Family,” and prefaced it, “The Other Letter was upon ye Loss of some Relation &c.” In his manuscript, it followed immediately after an earlier letter in this volume; see “From [Zechariah] Walker, 1686.” Cotton does not indicate the exact date, but Walker’s reference to a difficult summer harvest informed our decision to place the letter here.
785. In Thomas Prince’s hand: “1686. between ye end of May & ye end of December.”
786. “Anything new.”
787. John Walley (1644–1712) was born in England and emigrated in 1686. See 10 August 1694.
788. Edmund Andros, Governor of the Dominion of New England.
789. Simeon Stoddard (1651–1730) served on the Provincial Council and lived in Boston. In the legal case that follows in this letter, the defendant (Joseph Nash) is Stoddard’s brother-in-law. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:201; Richard Benson, The Nash Family of Weymouth, Massachusetts (Boston, 1998), 25.
790. Prince notes, “ie Joseph Dudley Esq—see ye Lettr followg.”
791. Not found.
792. Evidently an eyewitness in the Nash case.
793. Joseph Nash was a mariner who married Elizabeth Holbrook before 1674 and Grace Stoddard before 1684. He was living in Boston in 1686, in which year he also owned land in Maine. Court records indicate that he appeared in the Superior Court of Judicature on 2 November 1686 “upon his recognizance, for speaking treasonable words against his Majestie—and no evidence appeareing to preosecute, was ordred to be discharged, giveing bond to be of good Behaviour . . .” Records of the Superior Court of Judicature: Special Courts, 1686–1687 (copy), 13; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:260–61; Torrey, New England Marriages, 529.
794. Increase Mather.
795. “By voice.”
796. The letter’s carrier.
797. “Most respectfully yours.”
798. Cotton is referring to the large stain along the lower left margin of his writing paper; he simply wrote on the paper that remained, justifying his text against the stain. Apparently the paper was still wet when he wrote the letter but was sufficiently dry by the time he signed his name, because his apology and postscript are written over the stained area.
799. The injuries Cotton described were ultimately fatal, and Henry Bright died on 9 October 1686 at the age of eighty-four. Bright had emigrated in 1630 with John Winthrop’s fleet, settled in Watertown shortly thereafter, married Ann Goldstone in 1634 and had eight children. He served as Deacon of the Watertown church. Bright’s death confirms the date of this letter as early October 1686. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:253.
800. Prince notes, “viz May. 17. 1686.”
801. This letter is referred to in 1–9 October 1696.
802. Carpenter and miller Jacob Nash (d. 1718) was married to Abigail Dyer (b. 1647) and lived in Weymouth; he fought in King Philip’s War and served as a representative in 1689 and 1690. By 1694, he was listed as “captain.” Richard Benson, Nash Family of Weymouth, 20–23; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:261–62; Torrey, New England Marriages, 529. See 1–9 October 1686 letter to Thomas Hinckley for the Nash case.
803. See the letter of 1–9 October 1686 for the Nash case.
804. As one of the Commissioners for the United Colonies, William Stoughton (1631–1701, H.C. 1650) distributed Cotton’s salary for his missionary work.
805. Cotton struggled to pay his several sons’ college tuitions, and he implored Rowland to accept a paying pulpit rather than continue his studies past the Master’s Degree he would soon receive. For a slightly later example of Cotton’s tuition worries, see 2 September 1687.
806. Mather probably sent one of his own recently-published tracts, most likely The Call of the Gospel, an execution sermon Mather preached on 7 March 1686 (Boston, 1686), or Military Duties, the artillery election sermon preached on 13 September 1686 (Boston, 1687).
807. Mather evidently suggested a course of theological study that Rowland could pursue at home without incurring further living expenses, which his father could ill-afford according to the letter above.
808. Sir Edmund Andros arrived in Boston in December 1686 and soon tried to find a space for formal Episcopal worship in Boston. The established churches were unwilling to share their meetinghouses for such a purpose, despite repeated requests. On Easter Sunday 1687, Andros finally forced the Third Church to share its meetinghouse, an uncomfortable arrangement that lasted two years, until the first King’s Chapel was built on land seized from Boston’s old burial ground. Andre Mayer, King’s Chapel: the First Century, 1687–1787 (n.p. 1976), 6–7.
809. Parliament did not sit again until January 1689, the Convention Parliament of the Glorious Revolution. Cook & Wroughton, English Historical Facts, 89.
810. The Ottoman Empire launched its last assault on Christian Europe in the late seventeenth century, marching as far as the gates of Vienna in 1683. However, after they failed to take that city, the Ottomans rapidly were pushed back through Hungary and Transylvania.
811. Joanna Cotton, Cotton’s wife.
812. Not found.
813. James had long been keen to secure toleration for Catholics but found it was impossible to do so in England or Scotland without also addressing the status of Protestant dissenters. In February 1687, he published a “Letter of Indulgence” for both Catholic and Protestant dissenters in Scotland. He followed this in April with a “Declaration of Indulgence” for England also. Maurice Ashley, James II (Minneapolis, Minn., 1977), 196–97.
815. William Brattle (1662–1717) graduated from Harvard in 1680, served as a fellow of the college for ten years beginning in 1686 and was ordained as pastor of the Cambridge church in 1696. Known for his “independence,” especially from the powerful Mathers, and his willingness to dispute the Cambridge Platform, Brattle helped establish the Brattle Street Church with Rev. Benjamin Colman. Despite his prickly relationship with the Mathers, Brattle served as treasurer of Harvard College upon his brother’s death in 1713. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:200–207.
816. Samuel Green (1615–1702) emigrated with Winthrop in 1630 and settled in Cambridge. In addition to serving as captain of the town militia for thirty years, he was an important early printer in Massachusetts. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:305; Thomas, History of Printing in America, 54–71.
817. Cotton corrected Eliot’s version of the catechism and the 1687 primer—see Thomas Prince’s manuscript catalogue in which he placed a note about Eliot’s Indian Bible, the 1685 version: “ye Rev Mr John Cotton of Plimouth being well acqd wth ye Indn Langg was desd by ye Indn Commisnrs to correct Mr Eliot’s versn of 1663; took this method—while a good Reader in his study read ye Eng Bible aloud, Mr Cotton silently looked along in ye same place in ye Indn Bible: & whr He thot of Indn words wc He judgd cd express ye sense better, There He substituted ym & this 2d Editn is accordg to Mr Cotton’s correction.”
818. Brattle’s use of “Aunt” is a term of endearment and somewhat confusing. Dorothy Eyre was his sister’s mother-in-law. His sister, Catherine, married John Eyre (1654–1700) in 1680. Dorothy and Simon Eyre emigrated from London in 1635 with several children and settled in Watertown. Dorothy died on 13 July 1687. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:133–34, 1:239.
819. Andrew Bordman died at the age of forty-two on 15 July 1687. Vital Records of Cambridge, Massachusetts to 1850 (Boston, 1915), 2:475.
820. John Leverett (1662–1724) was a classmate of Brattle’s at Harvard and the two men served as tutors together for more than ten years. When Brattle wrote to Cotton, Leverett and Brattle were traveling together to Boston to meet with Increase Mather, President of Harvard, about college finances. According to Sibley, Brattle and Leverett assumed control of the college during Mather’s four-year stay in London to fight for the Massachusetts charter. Leverett later supported Brattle and Colman in establishing the Brattle Street Church. Although trained for the ministry, Leverett practiced law and served as a representative to the General Court, Speaker of the House, governor’s councillor and judge of the Superior Court and, ultimately, president of Harvard College from 1707 until his death, much to the Mathers’ chagrin. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:180–98.
821. Dudley was chief justice of the new courts beginning in March 1687.
822. Perhaps Gurdon Saltonstall (1666–1724, H.C. 1684), then serving as a minister in New London, Connecticut Colony, or Gurdon’s father, Nathaniel Saltonstall of Haverhill. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 181.
823. Theophilus Cotton (1682–1726, H.C. 1701) was the youngest of John and Joanna’s eleven children, four of whom died either as infants or while they were very young. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 2.
824. Eliezer and Mary Churchel had eleven children; their fourth daughter was named Jedidiah and baptized in 1687. CSM, 22:259; Plymouth Vital Records, 8.
825. Thomas Cushman Jr. (1637–1726) and his wife, Abigail Fuller Cushman (c. 1652–1734), had a son, Samuel. CSM, 22:259; Torrey, New England Marriages, 200.
826. Jonathan Russell (1627–1692) graduated from Harvard in 1645 and ministered to an often-contentious church in Wethersfield, Connecticut Colony, beginning in 1649. In 1659, he escorted a faction of the Wethersfield church to Hadley, Massachusetts Bay Colony. When he preached for Cotton in Plymouth, he was probably in Barnstable visiting (or perhaps even living with) his son, Jonathan Russell (1655–1711, H.C. 1675), who was the settled minister in Barnstable from 1683 until his death and the successor to the regicide Thomas Walley, whom his father had once hidden. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:110–18, 2:455–57.
827. Cotton preached the Sabbath lecture in Taunton for Samuel Danforth (1666–1727, H.C. 1683), the minister of Taunton from 1687 until his death. Like Cotton, Danforth preached to Native congregations, worked for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel and translated several works into Indian languages. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:243–49.
828. Possibly Zechariah Walker, the ordained minister of the second church of Woodbury, Connecticut Colony, from 1668 until his death in January 1700. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 213.
829. Ephraim Cole was a blacksmith in Plymouth, married to Rebecca Gray. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:426.
830. George Elliston’s shop was in Boston.
831. Richard Wilkins was a bookseller in Boston; he emigrated from Limerick with his son-in-law John Bailey, who had been forced out of his ministry for non-conformity. They settled in Boston by 1683. Only a few books printed in New England bear his name as publisher, and his shop did not carry books only, but presented a wide array of goods. His booklist leans heavily towards books for the ministry, “the learned and the gentry.” Hugh Amory and David D. Hall, eds., The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World, vol. 1, History of the Book in America (Cambridge, 2000), 101–2.
832. See 1 August 1687. Lieutenant John Bryant and his wife Abigail lived in Plymouth with seven children. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 11.
833. See the letter of 1 August 1687.
834. Danforth was ordained on 21 September 1687, as Cotton indicated.
835. Not found.
836. John Cotton (1658–1710) was the eldest son of Cotton’s brother Seaborn and Dorothy Bradstreet Cotton. He graduated Harvard in 1678 and served as fellow of the college from 1681 until he was called by the Hampton, later New Hampshire, church in 1687. After many offers, Cotton finally agreed to ordination in 1696. (His widow, Ann Lake Cotton, became Increase Mather’s second wife in 1715.) Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:1–5.
837. John Cotton (1661) married Sarah Hubbard of Ipswich, the daughter of Richard Hubbard and Sarah Bradstreet Hubbard, near the beginning of his six years in Exeter. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:213.
838. Not found.
839. Records of the Town of Plymouth (Plymouth, 1889–1903), 1:190–91.
840. To Increase Mather, 10 and 21 September 1688.
841. From James Keith, 6 March 1683; To Cotton Mather, 11 March 1684.
842. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 66; Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 192, 276–77; George D. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony: A History of New Plymouth 1620–1691
843. Not found.
844. See above letters of 1 and 19 August 1687.
845. Rowland evidently received a call from the Bristol church.
846. The Plymouth records do not include this daughter of Lydia and John Nelson, who had two other children in 1683 and 1689. Lee D. Van Antwerp, comp., Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850 (Camden, Me., 1993), 11.
847. Winsor’s History of the Town of Duxbury mistakenly indicates that John Alden died on 12 September 1686, but Savage’s Dictionary correctly states that he died on 12 September 1687. Mayflower passenger John Alden left Plymouth in 1631 and settled in Duxbury, serving the colony in both government and military affairs for more than forty-five years. John Cotton is believed to have published an elegy to Alden after his death, Poem Occasioned by the Death of that Aged, Pious, Sincere-hearted Christian John Alden . . . who died September 12, 1687 . . . (Boston, 1687[?]) [Evans 426] Charles Evans, American Bibliography (New York, 1941–1959). Justin Winsor, History of the Town of Duxbury, Massachusetts, with Genealogical Registers (Boston, 1849), 55–63; James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint Baltimore, Md., 1990), 1:23; Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 232–33.
848. Not found.
849. John Cotton, son of Seaborn Cotton. See the above letter of 26 August 1687.
850. Caleb Cooke (b. 1651) lived in Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1: 446–47.
851. Not found.
852. Possibly Deacon Jonathan Metcalf (1650–1727) of Dedham, Massachusetts, listed as a freeman in 1683. New England Historic Genealogical Register, 6 (1852): 173–76.
853. A “pillow beere” is a pillow case. Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd ed. (Oxford, 1989), 11:839.
854. Walter Deane (1612–c.1694), one of the original forty-six settlers of Taunton, emigrated from England with his brother, John, in 1637. He served as a selectman for more than twenty years, as well as a deputy to the General Court in Plymouth. Samuel Hopkins Emery, History of Taunton, Massachusetts from Its Settlement to the Present Time (Syracuse, N.Y., 1893), 39–40; Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 279–80.
855. Tear; one or two words lost.
856. Tear; two or three words lost.
857. Tear; two or three words lost.
858. Tear; two or three words lost.
859. Tear; two or three words lost.
860. Most of line illegible or lost to tear.
861. William Harvey (d. 1691) was one of the original settlers of Taunton and served as a selectman, representative to the General Court in Plymouth, constable, and surveyor. Emery, History of Taunton, 50–51.
862. James Walker (c. 1620–1692) was one of the early settlers of Taunton, although not one of the “fortysix purchasers.” He emigrated as a teenager with his sister under the sponsorship of their cousin, John Browne. He became a freeman in 1650 and opened a tavern in 1679. Walker also served as a constable, deputy and selectman. Emery, History of Taunton, 85, 92; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:393–94.
863. George Bonum (Bonan), who often served as a surveyor in Plymouth, and his wife, Elizabeth, married in 1681 and had nine children by 1702. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 4, 85; Plymouth Town Records, 1:184, 188, 194.
864. Cotton’s church records read “Wood” in both cases, possibly Nathaniel Wood (b. 1652), the son of John Wood of Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:627; Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 163, 261.
865. Not found.
866. John and Joanna’s fifth child, Sarah, was born on 5 April 1670 and was named to replace an earlier daughter, Sarah, who died at age four in Guilford in 1669. Sarah survived the illness Cotton describes in this letter.
867. Lieutenant John Morton (1650–1718) settled in Middleborough, married Mary Ring in 1687, and had nine children by 1700. See the letters of 19 July 1676 and 9 July 1688. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3: 244; Vital Records of Plymouth, 11.
868. Not found.
869. Samuel Danforth (1666–1727, H.C. 1683) was the settled minister in Taunton from 1687 to 1727. Danforth also served as an Indian commissioner and compiled an Indian dictionary. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 3:243–49.
870. Not found.
871. There was a serious measles epidemic in New England over the winter 1687–88. John Duffy, Epidemics in Colonial America (Baton Rouge, La., 1953), 166.
872. Joanna evidently offered medical advice in the February letter.
873. Mrs. Elizabeth Shove became a full member of the Taunton church on 27 November 1687.
874. “If it pleases God” or “God willing.”
875. Lieutenant George Macey was the son of George Macey, one of the original forty-six settlers of Taunton. The younger George served as a selectman seventeen years, represented Taunton to the Plymouth General Court from 1672 to 1677 and progressed through the military hierarchy in Taunton during the last decades of the seventeenth century, serving in several wars. Conflicts between Macey and Capt. Thomas Leonard escalated in the late 1680s, and by 1690, Maj. Thomas Whalley considered asking Cotton to convince Macey to step down: “Macey’s party by virtue of the order of the Council are daily listing soldiers and take all opportunities to wheedle in all the youngsters they can, the other party look upon the proceedings not to be proper and so lie still . . . there is nothing that will tend to peace but for some (Mr Cotton &c) that have an interest in Macey to persuade for the peace of the town to lay down.” A lengthy appeal from Leonard, “supposed to be forwarded to Mr. Cotton at Plymouth” in 1692, suggests that the division between Leonard and Macey continued. Emery, History of Taunton, 573, 85, 328–36.
876. “Not only for the moment (as well as) for all time.”
878. William Hoskins; see 8 November 1684.
879. Samuel Angier; see 17 September 1679.
880. James Keith, minister in Bridgewater.
881. Not found.
882. Increase Mather was planning a trip to England for the early spring of 1688 to try to convince the Crown of Andros’s abuse of power in New England and to represent Massachusetts in her fight for a new charter. Michael G. Hall, The Last American Puritan: The Life of Increase Mather, 1639–1723 (Middletown, Conn., 1988), 207–11. See also 11 April 1688.
883. “The chh set apart, March 7: a day of Fasting & prayer, on account of the measles in the winter & for the mercies of the yeare, & for continuance of & Gods blessing upon the meanes of Grace.” CSM, 22:162.
884. Cotton’s tuition concerns continued. See the above letters of 26 November 1686 and 2 September 1687.
885. Measles; see 3 March 1688.
886. John Chipman (c. 1620–1708) emigrated by 1638 and became a freeman sometime between 1649 and 1658. He served as a grand juryman, deputy, selectman, and the ruling elder in the Barnstable church until he moved to Sandwich. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 262–63.
887. Chipman’s second wife, Ruth Sargent Winslow Bourne, was the widow of Rev. Richard Bourne, who had been thirty years her senior. Like Joanna Cotton, Ruth Chipman was a midwife and healer, and evidently the two women shared medicinal herbs. Thomas Prince, born into Ruth Chipman’s hands, described her as “a little, lively smart gentlewoman of very good sense and knowledge, of the strictest piety.” R. A. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, (Sandwich, Mass., 1984), 121–22.
888. Sir Edmund Andros, the new governor of the Dominion of New England, was given authority over much of modern-day Maine, along with his other jurisdictions. He quickly made that power felt by attacking the home and trading post of Baron Jean-Vincent d’Abbadie de St. Castin in the Pemaquid settlement on the Penobscot. Historians suggest that the attacks on Dover, New Hampshire, in June 1689 and on Pemaquid in August 1689 were in retaliation for this aggression. Castin, the son-in-law of the Penobscot chief Modockawando, was a powerful intermediary between Natives and French in the area. Alan Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 1512–1763: An Encyclopedia (New York, 1996), 180–81, 549.
889. After Andros arrived, Edward Randolph became the secretary and registrar of the Dominion of New England. Randolph tried to exploit Andros’s land policies to his own advantage: first he requested 500 acres of common land in Lynn, then 700 acres between Watertown and Cambridge. Both attempted land-grabs failed. Michael Garibaldi Hall, Edward Randolph and the American Colonies, 1676–1703, (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1960), 109, 113.
890. Plymouth church records list John and Rachel Churchel and Elizabeth Kenedy as “members admitted” in 1688. Kenedy was baptised at the same time. CSM, 22:261.
891. “Rebekah, the wife of our Brother Thomas Clarke, dyed, April, 4: she was not in full communion, a child of yarmouth church, & left in her owne hand-writing many gratious words that did fully evidence God was gratiously at worke with her soule, & that she was preparing for church-fellowship.” Her grandparents included Rev. John Miller (1604–1663) who emigrated in 1634 and served as the settled minister in Roxbury, Rowley, Yarmouth and Groton. CSM, 22:262; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 141.
892. Increase Mather sailed for London on 7 April. Hall, Last American Puritan, 210–11.
893. Not found.
894. Bottom of page torn, writing faint.
895. The queen’s pregnancy was covered in the London Gazette (#2316, 26–30 January 1687).
896. This story is covered in the London Gazette (#2315, 23–26 January 1687).
897. Not found.
898. There are two likely Edward Doteys: Edward Jr. (b. 1664) and Edward (b. 1671). See the letter of 9 July 1688; Edward Dotey was also mixed up in the Clark’s Island case. Vital Records of Plymouth, 4–5, Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 283–85; Vital Records of Plymouth, 4–5. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 220.
899. Cotton was evidently hoping that Rowland would pursue missionary work and receive some tuition help from the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel.
900. John Moses died on 22 April 1688. CSM, 22:134.
901. Ann King (wife of Samuel) died on 4 May 1688. CSM, 22:134.
902. “The chh set apart May, 3: as a Fast because of great drought, great raine came that very day & after, soe ready is God to heare the prayers of his people.” CSM, 22:163.
903. Joanna was probably worried about the measles epidemic; see 3 March 1688.
904. Joshua Moody (1633–1697, HC 1653) was the settled minister in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, from 1658 until he moved to Boston’s First Church in 1684, where he remained until 1693. He ended his ministerial career back in Portsmouth. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:367–80.
905. Samuel Torrey (1632–1707) was Weymouth’s settled minister when Cotton visited to hear the renowned preacher speak. Torrey attended Harvard but left without graduating when the college extended the course of study in 1656. He began his ministerial career in Hull and was ordained in 1664 in Weymouth, where he served as minister from 1656 until his death in 1707. Torrey was chosen to give the Artillery Election sermon in 1669 and the Election Sermon in 1674, 1683 and 1695. In 1684 he was also offered the presidency of Harvard College, but he declined. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 206; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:564–67.
906. Nathaniel Gookin (1656–1692, H.C. 1675) succeeded Urian Oakes as the settled minister in Cambridge from 1681 until his death at the age of thirty-five. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:474–80.
907. Three or four words illegible.
908. Mercy/Mary Cotton (1666–1715), daughter of Seaborn Cotton, was married to Peter Tufts (d. 1721). Seaborn and John Cotton were brothers. Torrey, New England Marriages, 758.
909. “Salute in my name.”
910. Probably Thomas Oakes (b. 1644, H.C. 1662), who practiced as a physician in Boston, served as a representative to the General Court, and was its Speaker in 1692. Oakes also joined Increase Mather, Elisha Cooke and Henry Ashurst in London to fight for the restoration of the Massachusetts Charter in 1692. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:130–32.
911. Possibly John Gilman (1657–1708) of Exeter, who served as a councilor under the Provisional Charter, a judge, and Speaker of the House. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:257–58.
912. George D. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony: A History of New Plymouth 1620–1691 (New Haven, Conn., 1966), 212–21, 225; Records of the Town of Plymouth (Plymouth, 1889–1903), 1:192–93, 197.
913. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 265–67.
914. John Foy (d. 1708) was a mariner in Boston. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint Baltimore, Md., 1990), 2:198.
915. Mather was in London lobbying for the new Massachusetts charter.
916. The Gurnet is a point of land at the northern entrance to Plymouth harbor.
917. See the editorial note preceeding this letter.
918. “Old England.”
919. Thomas Shepard, Sincere Convert, Discovering the Paucity of True Beleevers (London, 1641); Shepard, Sound Beleever, or a Treatise of Evangelical Conversion (London, 1645).
920. It appears that Cotton received no “Indian pay” from 1684 to 1692. Until 1684, he earned £25 per year from the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel; beginning in 1695, his salary increased to £40 per year, and he received a raise the following year. MS 7946 New England Company: Accounts 1657–1731, Guildhall Library, London.
921. After graduating from Harvard, Jonathan Pierpont (1665–1709, H.C. 1685), kept a school in Dorchester, preached occasionally in Milton and was invited to the pulpit in Dedham. He declined the Dedham offer in December 1687. He would receive several additional offers by the summer of 1688, from New London (8 November 1687), Newberry (16 May 1688) and Northfield (22 May 1688), yet he would decline all of these as well. In April 1688, he was called to Sandwich but began preaching in Reading following some heavy lobbying at a ministerial funeral. In July he accepted his second degree at Harvard and returned to preaching in Reading despite Sandwich’s call. See letters of 25 September 1688 and October 1688 for continued problems between Pierpont and the Sandwich congregation. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 3:349–52.
922. Joanna was then traveling to see her son John, Rowland’s brother.
923. Charles Morton was born in Cornwall, England, in 1627 and attended Wadham College, Oxford, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in 1649 and a master’s in 1652. After preaching in Blisland, Cornwall, for six years, he was silenced for non-conformity in 1662. Morton then taught school in Middlesex until he emigrated to New England in 1686. He ministered to the congregation in Charlestown from 1686 until his death in 1698. He also established a well-respected school there and served as vice-president of Harvard College from 1697 to 1698. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 146.
924. Not found.
925. Sir William Phips.
926. “The case is under judgment.”
927. Cotton had feared this would be the result of voluntary subscription; see his letter of 2 September 1687.
928. John Eliot lived nearly two more years, dying on 20 May 1690.
929. Cotton seems to have been angling to take over John Eliot’s job, partly as a way to augment his decreasing salary.
930. Cotton is referring to news of the Glorious Revolution.
931. John Chipman was at this time the elder in Sandwich, apparently having left Barnstable, to help his “old friend” John Smith, who asked to be relieved of his duties in 1688 at the age of seventy-four. R. A. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, (Sandwich, Mass., 1984), 129, 128.
932. Samuel Prince (1648–1728) was one of the merchants who enjoyed Sandwich’s coastal access to Massachusetts Bay. He arrived from Hull in 1682, purchased land, became a freeman and served in various town offices. His second wife was Mercy Hinckley, the daughter of Gov. Thomas Hinckley. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 133.
933. Jonathan Pierpont’s father, Robert Pierpont.
934. Although Pierpont was invited to Sandwich and was “accompanied by Elder Chipman” on his visit, he ultimately rejected Sandwich’s call, partly because of his father’s counsel. As Pierpont wrote in his diary, “My honoured Father was averse to my going to Sandwich.” Pierpont was eventually ordained in the first church in Reading (Wakefield) on 26 June 1689; he remained there until his death in 1709. Ironically, Cotton’s son Rowland settled as the minister in Sandwich in 1690. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 131; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 165; “Diary of Rev. Jonathan Pierpont,” New England Historic Genealogical Register (hereafter NEHGR) 13 (1859): 255–58.
935. Cotton employed a less hostile vocabulary in the next letter, addressed to Robert Pierpont, the “surly old man” himself. See the letter below of October 1688.
936. According to Pierpont’s diary, Cotton was right. The young minister was clearly struggling with his choice, for he wrote that, “I had inclinations to go to Sandwich” but admitted that “most were for my going to Reading.” “Diary of Rev. Jonathan Pierpont,” NEHGR 13 (1859): 257.
937. Ministers often gathered at ordinations, and Cotton was clearly hoping to lobby Pierpont on Sandwich’s behalf at the Roxbury ordination of Nehemiah Walter. Cotton may also have been hoping to meet again with Pierpont’s father, who lived in Roxbury.
938. Probably William Bassett II, grandson of Leiden Separatist and emigrant William, who served in Sandwich as a militia captain and colonel as well as a Register of Probate. For two of his letters during King William’s War, see “The Hinckley Papers,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 214, 219; Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 119, 147.
939. Thomas Prince notes, “This no doubt was wrote to the Father of mr Jonathan Pierpont, by ye R Mr John Cotton Plimouth, for Elder Chipman & others of Sandwich.”
940. For Pierpont’s call to Northfield, see the notes on the letter of 13 August 1688.
941. John Brock (1620–1688, H.C. 1646) began his career in Rowley (1648–1650), briefly returned to Harvard to pursue his studies after completing both bachelor’s and master’s degrees and spent eleven years as the minister in Isle of Shoals, later New Hampshire, until 1662, when he settled in Reading (modern-day Wakefield) until his death in June 1688. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:127–31.
942. Cotton seems to have been implying that Reading (modern-day Wakefield) should have had an easier time finding a minister because the town was closer to Harvard College in Cambridge—“the place of supply”—than Sandwich was.
943. See the above letter of 25 September 1688.
944. See the above letter of October 1688, to Robert Pierpont.
945. John Smith (1614–1710) emigrated to New England in 1630, preached in Barnstable on Long Island and settled in Sandwich in 1673. The Sandwich church had been without a settled minister for twenty years. Smith seemed well suited to the Sandwich congregation because of his moderate stance regarding Quakers, who made up a sizable portion of Sandwich residents. He was ordained in 1675 and remained in the pulpit until 1688, when he requested a dismissal due to his advancing age. See the above letter of 25 September 1688. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 189–90; Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 109–11, 128–29.
946. Thomas Prince notes, “I suppose wrote to Elder Chipman of Sandwich.”
947. In the vital records, Clerk Thomas Faunce listed a Samuel and Suzannah Garner, who married in 1682 and had three children by 1687. Evidently, Suzannah survived the illness Cotton mentions, because she later married Joshua Ransom on 10 March 1692, after Samuel’s death on 3 September 1689. Lee D. Van Antwerp, comp., and Ruth Wilder Sherman, ed., Vital Records of Plymouth, Mass. to 1850 (Camden, Me., 1993), 6, 86, 134; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:230.
948. See the above letter of 1 October 1688.
949. Robert and Jonathan Pierpont.
950. Cotton seems to have wanted William Bassett to join the lobbying effort in Roxbury.
951. Increase Mather.
952. William Phips.
953. Thomas Danforth.
954. For more concerning the skyrocketing court costs incurred during the era of the Dominion of New England, see 9 July 1688.
955. Cotton clearly supported Mather’s charter efforts, a stance that he later regretted; see 6/7 July 1698.
956. “The word is enough.”
957. Jonathan Russell, minister of Barnstable.
958. Not found.
959. Probably Joseph Howland; see 9 July 1688.
960. Probably John Tulley, An Almanac for the Year of Our Lord MDCLXXXIX (Boston, 1689) [Evans 499]; less likely, but possibly Daniel Leeds, An Almanac for the year of Christian Account 1689 (Philadelphia, 1688) [Evans 446]. Charles Evans, American Bibliography (New York, N.Y., 1941–1959), 1:75, 82.
961. Possibly Thaddeus Maccarty (1640–1705) or his son, Thomas (Thaddeus?), who was a member of the Harvard class of 1691. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:139; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:106–7.
962. Lewis Bayly, Manitowompae Pomantamoonk Sampwshanau Christianoh Uttoh Woh An Pomantog Wnssikkitteahonat God, (London, 1685) [Evans 383]. This is the second edition of John Eliot’s abridged translation of Lewis Bayly’s Practice of Piety. Eliot’s first edition was published in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1665 by Samuel Green [Evans 95]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:22, 63.
963. Not found.
964. For example, see the letter below to Thomas Hinckley, 15 February 1689.
965. For more on Walley, see 10 August 1694.
966. From John Cotton (1661), 5 August 1690.
967. From Shubael Dummer, 13 January 1691; From Samuel Sewall, 22 February 1692.
968. From Samuel Sewall, 22 February 1692.
969. From Samuel Sewall, 22 February 1692.
970. To Rowland Cotton, 23 July 1694.
971. From Henry Dering, 12 August 1693; To Joanna Cotton, [29 May 1695].
972. To Rowland Cotton, 12 February 1695.
973. To Rowland Cotton, 4 March 1696; To Rowland Cotton, [after 7 August 1696].
974. To Rowland Cotton, [30 October 1696].
975. From Henry Dering, 20 August 1692; From Henry Dering, 12 August 1693; To Joanna and Rowland Cotton,  August 1694; To Joanna Cotton, [29 May 1695]; To Rowland Cotton, 13 November 1695; To Rowland Cotton, [14 May 1698].
976. Howard H. Peckham, The Colonial Wars, 1689–1762 (Chicago, Ill., 1964), 25–56; Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 133–34; George D. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony: A History of New Plymouth 1620–1691 (New Haven, Conn., 1966), 226–32; Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff and David Pulsifer, 12 vols. (Boston, 1855–61), 6:208–57.
978. Thomas Faunce (1647–1746) was ordained a deacon of the Plymouth church on 26 December 1686. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 161, 259.
979. See 28 November 1688.
980. War erupted between the French and the English along the northern border of Massachusetts Bay Colony (present-day Maine) in 1688, and French Catholic Indians attacked Pemaquid in August 1689; Haverhill also reported Indian attacks. After an official declaration of war, these skirmishes were considered part of King William’s War. See the section above, “King William’s War.” Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 226–27; Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 132.
981. John Blake emigrated with his family as a child in 1630 and lived in Dorchester and Boston. Savage suggests that he died “early in 1689,” leaving no children. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint Baltimore, Md., 1990), 1:192–93.
982. Cotton Mather’s first wife was Abigail Philips, the daughter of mariner John and Catherine Anderson Philips of Charlestown. The “maiden-daughter” was most likely Catherine (b. 1672), since Mehitable (1667–1737) and Mary (b. 1676) were married by this time. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:412–13; Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, Md., 1865), 350, 565.
983. Not found.
984. The New England Company account of 1692 noted, “To mr John Cotton for 3 years £40 p annu, & for the last year £ 50—170:00.” By comparison, John Eliot received 100 for two years, and Hinckley received sixty-two for three years. MS 7946 New England Company: Accounts 1657–1731, Guildhall Library, London.
985. “By voice.”
986. George Keith (c. 1638–1716) was a prominent, and controversial, Quaker minister and writer. In 1677 he traveled on a missionary tour through Germany and Holland with George Fox, William Penn and Robert Barclay. In 1689 he settled in Philadelphia as headmaster of the William Penn school. Conflicts with other Pennsylvanian Quakers led to a splintering of the Quaker meetings in the 1690s and Keith’s dismissal from the London Meeting. Eventually, he sought ordination in the Anglican Church and became an agent for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, attacking the Quaker church in his preaching and writing. Allen Tolman and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography (New York, 1957), 289–90.
987. Samuel Fisher (1605–1665) was a powerful nonconformist minister educated at Trinity College and ordained in Kent in 1632. He officially became a Baptist in 1643, but he had been associated with the Anabaptists for some years. A Baptist congregation invited him to become their preacher by 1649, and he engaged in vociferous oral and print battles over infant baptism. In 1654, he converted again, this time to Quakerism, following a visit by leading English Quakers William Caton and John Stubbs. Fisher began an active traveling ministry, journeying to Rome and Constantinople, among other places. He was imprisoned for his work and died of the plague in 1665 shortly after his release. His published works defending the Quaker faith were standard Quaker reading throughout the seventeenth century and beyond. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols. (London, 1885–1900) (hereafter DNB), 70–72.
988. Samuel Fisher, Rusticus Ad Academicos In Exercitationibus Expostulatoriis, Apologeticis Quatuor. The Rustick’s Alarm to the Rabbies: Or, the Country Correcting the University and Clergy, And (Not Without Good Cause) Contesting for the Truth, Against the Nursing Mothers and their Children in testimony of Truth Exalted. (London, 1660) [Wing F1056].
989. One of the major fires of colonial Boston, the 1690 fire destroyed at least fourteen houses as well as warehouses; it also consumed Samuel Green’s printing press. Beginning at 2:00 a.m., the fire traveled across Mill Creek, increasing the destruction. Memorial History of Boston, ed. Justin Winsor (Boston, 1881), 388, 504.
991. Fitz-John Winthrop and many Plymouth Colony soldiers participated in the attack on Montreal. See the above notes on King William’s War.
992. This smallpox outbreak spread to Boston in October 1689 via a ship from the West Indies. The major epidemic continued to ravage Boston in 1690 and was rampant on the ships that carried colonial forces to attack Port Royal; in this manner the disease spread throughout New France. John Duffy, Epidemics in Colonial America (Baton Rouge, La., 1953), 48. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 232.
993. Samuel Green Jr. learned his trade from his father, Samuel, a Cambridge printer. The younger Green died in the smallpox epidemic in July and his wife, Elizabeth Sill, died a few days after. In August, Green’s press was destroyed in the Boston fire of 1690. Thomas, The History of Printing in America, 83–84; A History of the Book in America, vol. 1, The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World, ed. Hugh Amory and David D. Hall (New York, 2000), 94; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:306.
994. Sarah Cotton Pierce was the daughter of Seaborn and Dorothy Bradstreet Cotton and married Richard Pierce on 27 August 1680. Pierce was a Boston printer who likely emigrated to the town after 1679 and before 1684. He continued to practice his trade until 1691, when he either began working for someone else, left New England or died. Isaiah Thomas, The History of Printing in America, with a Biography of Printers & an Account of Newspapers, 2d ed., ed. Marcus A. McCorison (1810; reprint, New York, 1970), 84–85; Amory and Hall, The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World, 94; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:430; John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 1:292.
995. John Hale (1636–1700, H.C. 1657) was the minister in Beverly from 1664 until his death. He served as the chaplain to the military expedition against Canada in 1690 from 4 June to 20 November over the strong objections of his congregation, to which Cotton alludes in this letter. One historian suggested that he served as chaplain because such “a large number were engaged” and “he was anxious to accompany them that he might watch over their morals.” His son, Robert (1668–1719, H.C. 1686), carried out his father’s ministerial duties in his absence. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 98; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:509–20, 3:362–64.
996. John Wise (1652–1725, H.C. 1673) the minister in Essex, possibly John Overton, son of mariner Robert Overton (d. 1673), and John Emerson (1625–1700, HC 1656), the minister in Gloucester, all served as chaplains to Phips’s 1690 expedition to Canada. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 233, 80; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:485–87, 2:428–41; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:325.
997. Written in margin.
998. See Ichabod Wiswall’s description of William’s Ireland campaign in the letter of 17 October 1690.
999. James II had “ruined the Committee for Trade and Plantations.” Michael G. Hall, Edward Randolph and the American Colonies, 1676–1703 (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1960), 120.
1000. One of the agents for the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Ashurst agreed to present Plymouth’s petition for a charter, despite the colony’s initial inability to support his efforts financially. On 3 March 1691 the Plymouth Court finally voted to send Ashurst 50 guineas “that he would be pleased to use his care & endeavour to procure a charter from the King for a distinct government for this colony,” and one hundred pounds sterling “towards the charge of procuring a charter as aforesaid” (Plymouth Colony Records, 6:260). Increase Mather repeatedly warned Hinckley that his hesitation was dangerous, as he did in a September 1689 letter: “You can never sufficiently requite Sir Harry Ashhurst for his concerning himself with such activity in your behalf. You must not think much to send over supplies of money for him to lay out to gratify some persons with for your benefit . . . My advice is, that you would raise money for that purpose, without any delay. You may do it too late: you cannot do it too soon.” “The Hinckley Papers,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 211.
1001. Increase Mather.
1002. See the headnote “New England in Old England” on the Plymouth charter.
1003. George, 4th Lord and 1st Earl of Melville (1634[?]–1707), was made William II’s commissioner to the Scottish Parliament in February 1690. DNB.
1004. Possibly William Trail (1640–1714), minister at Borthwick, Midlothian, England, brother of Robert Trail (1642–1716), a noted Presbyterian minister. The books to which William referred in this letter belonged to his father, Robert (1603–1678), a zealous covenanter and one of the Scottish protestors, who ministered to the Scottish army in England in 1644. DNB, s.v. “Robert Trail.” “Beaumaris” is a city in Wales.
1005. “On the day, both memorable and miserable, because of the death of a brother.”
1006. Not found.
1007. Rowland had recently settled with Sandwich’s first church after rejecting a call from Dedham, preferring to be closer to his parents in Plymouth. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:324.
1008. Considered the first indigenous American newspaper, Publick Occurrences Both Forreign and Domestick was published on 25 September 1690 and was intended to be a regular serial. Focusing on local and colonial news rather than on international events, Publick Occurrences was silenced after only one edition, largely due to the war news it contained and the fact that it was published without official sanction. Editor Benjamin Harris implied in the paper that England’s Native alliances (“Maquas”) during King William’s War had been unnecessary and unsuccessful, and he reported rumors that Louism XIV of France (“monster Louis”) had been sleeping with his own daughter-in-law. Many people in Boston suspected that Cotton Mather was a central contributor—a claim he denied. Charles Clark, The Public Prints: The Newspaper in Anglo-American Culture, 1665–1740 (New York, 1994), 71–73, 79–81.
1009. Harris, a printer and newspaper publisher who left London in 1686, was the publisher of Public Occurrences.
1011. “King William.”
1012. New England.
1013. In the Battle of the Boyne, 1 July 1690, King William’s Anglo-Dutch Protestant army defeated the Jacobite forces of the deposed James II. James was back in France within three weeks.
1014. James Fitzjames, Duke of Berwick and son of James II (1670–1734), remained in Ireland until the fall of Limerick in 1691. Richard Talbot, Earl of Tyrconnel (1630–1691), and the French General Lanzun left Ireland on 12 September 1690. DNB.
1015. In fact, it took a second campaign, in the summer of 1691, to pacify the rest of Ireland.
1016. Arthur Herbert, Lord Torrington (1647–1716), commanded the Anglo-Dutch fleet in an engagement with a superior French force off Beachy Head on 30 June 1690. The allies fared poorly, temporarily ceding control of the English Channel to the French. Accused of cowardice or mismanagement, Torrington was subsequently arrested to stand court-martial on capital charges. He was acquitted of all charges but never received a command at sea again. DNB.
1017. After Torrington’s removal, command of the fleet was temporarily given to three admirals: Sir John Ashby (d. 1693), Sir Richard Haddock (1629–1713) and Henry Killgrew (d. 1712). DNB.
1018. Wiswall clearly hoped that Cotton would use whatever influence he had with Hinckley to encourage the Governor to appeal to the King directly. As Wiswall saw it, Plymouth’s silence would result in the colony losing its charter fight.
1019. New Plymouth.
1020. “Nothing except prayers remains.”
1021. Samuel Arnold (1622–1693) was the minister in Marshfield from 1657 until his death, and, before helping to settle that town, he was a representative to the General Court of Plymouth from Yarmouth (1654–1656). Weis, Colonial Clergy, 21; Marshfield: Autobiography of a Pilgrim Town (Marshfield, 1940), 27–28, 30–32.
1022. Mather may have been referring to Cotton’s letters of 10 and 21 September 1688. This letter seems to have been a reply to comments in those letters.
1023. Robert Boyle (1627–1691) was a noted English philosopher and scientist and a founder of the Royal Society. He also served as governor of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in New England, commonly called the New England Company (and hereafter called SPG), beginning in 1661. Although Mather seems to have been unaware of it, Boyle had resigned as Governor of the New England Company in 1689. DNB.
1024. There are no accounts for Cotton’s SPG salary from 1684 to 1692, but the 1692 account refers to Cotton’s salary “for 3 years £40 p annu, & for the last year £ 50—170:00.” MS 7946 New England Company: Accounts 1657–1731, Guildhall Library, London.
1025. Gov. Thomas Hinckley.
1026. Samuel Treat (1648–1717, H.C. 1669), minister at Eastham and Native missionary. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:304–14.
1027. Gov. Simon Bradstreet (1604–1697). Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:236.
1028. William Stoughton.
1029. John Richards (d. 1694) lived in Dorchester and served as a lieutenant, captain and major, as well as a representative, speaker, assistant and judge. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:533.
1030. Perhaps Manasseh Marston (d. 1705), a blacksmith who served as a captain and a representative to the General Court and lived in Salem and Charlestown. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:161.
1031. “I suspect”—Mather again warned Cotton that Plymouth would be annexed to New York.
1032. Shubael Dummer was born in Newbury, Massachusetts, in February 1636 and graduated from Harvard in 1656. He was the settled minister to York, later in Maine, from 1662 until his death on 6 February 1692 during a Native attack that destroyed the town. In that same raid 160 people were either killed or carried into captivity. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 74. Cotton Mather, Decennium Luctuosum (Boston, 1699) in Narratives of the Indian Wars, 1675–1699, ed. Charles Lincoln (New York, 1913), 230–31; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:471–75.
1033. Not found.
1034. Cotton’s church collected money to send to communities ravaged by Native wars, including York. As Cotton noted in the church records, “This chh & people made a large contribution in the time of the warrs for the reliefe of those impoverished at & about Rehoboth; The like they did also in these wars & sent it to the distressed Eastward . . . This may truly be left on record, That upon any motion from the Elders for a contribution on such accounts, there was a great readynesse in the people to hearken thereunto & give freely & abundantly.” CSM, 22:165.
1035. Following a request from Massachusetts Governor Simon Bradstreet in July 1689, Benjamin Church agreed to recruit some Native soldiers and other Plymouth Colony volunteers to aid in defending the northern border against French and French-allied Native attacks, which had been raging since 1688. Church was one of the few veterans of King Philip’s War who drew on his earlier experiences to command Native and English troops in the larger theatre of King William’s War. He led men into the Battle at Brackett’s Woods near Casco Bay in 1689 and commanded a second raid in the fall of 1690 at a Native fort near Brunswick on the Androscoggin River. Before the war ended, Church led two more assaults along the Maine-Quebec border, but Plymouth’s participation in the war was half-hearted. Langdon and Stratton suggest that many colonists opposed sending Plymouth troops to fight in this war, largely due to a worsening financial crisis, reluctance to pay war taxes to support the effort and dissatisfaction over who would lead Plymouth troops. Colonial Wars of North America, 1512–1763: An Encyclopedia, ed. Gallay, 137–39; Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 226–34; Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 132–35.
1036. Smallpox epidemic.
1037. John Davis served as a lieutenant, captain and major and lived in York. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:18.
1038. Job Alcock (1638–1716) lived in York and served as a lieutenant, captain and Councillor in the first post-Andros government. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:21.
1039. Abraham Preble (1642–1714) lived in York, and served as a lieutenant, judge and deacon. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:477.
1040. Letters are not found; perhaps Nathaniel Thomas (1643–1718) of Marshfield, who was elected representative from Marshfield both before and after the new charter and served in King Philip’s War. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:281–82.
1041. Anthony Collamore lived in Scituate, was born in England and married Sarah Chittenden in 1666. Collamore served as a captain in the militia and commander of the Scituate company and mastered his own trading vessel. He was shipwrecked near Scituate Beach and died on 16 December 1693 on a rocky ledge still known as Collamore’s Ledge. Deodat Lawson published a broadside to mark his death, Threnodia, or a Mournful Remembrance of Anthony Collamore (Boston, 1694) [Evans/Bristol B 158]. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:432; Samuel Deane, History of Scituate, Massachusetts: From Its First Settlement to 1831 (1831; reprint, Scituate, Mass., 1975), 131, 240; Roger Bristol, Supplement to Charles Evans’ American Bibliography (Charlottesville, 1970), 12.
1042. Increase Mather.
1043. Cotton Mather.
1044. Nearly entire line missing.
1045. Prince left a space between this and the next line indicating six or seven lines missing; he wrote “torn out” in the space.
1046. Prince’s note.
1047. Cotton seems to have been convinced that Plymouth had already been joined to New York and was stressing the positive side of this much-feared conclusion by praising New York’s governor.
1048. Merchant Samuel Prince (1648–1728) moved to Sandwich from Hull in 1682, married Mercy Hinckley, the daughter of Governor Thomas Hinckley, in 1686 and served in several town offices. Savage records a younger brother, Thomas, who was born in 1658, married Ruth Turner in 1685 and had three sons, but offers no other information. Russell A. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town (Sandwich, Mass., 1984), 133. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:487–88; Deane, History of Scituate, Mass., 327–28.
1049. Probably Thomas Fairweather, baptised in Boston on 12 June 1670. Thomas was the son of John Fairweather (d. 1712), who served as constable and captain of the Castle during the overthrow of Andros in 1689. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:138.
1050. Probably Simon Eyers (1652–1695), who was born in Boston, educated with the financial help of his maternal grandfather, Comfort Starr, and settled in New Haven by 1685. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:133–34.
1051. Prince’s note.
1052. Prince’s note.
1053. Prince’s note.
1054. Edward Randolph was kept under house arrest by the Massachusetts Council of Safety and in February 1690, under orders from the Crown, was sent to London to have his case heard before the Committee for Trade and Plantations. He was exonerated of all charges, but found himself unemployed. In August 1690, he briefly went to Ireland, then returned to some free-lance customs work in London and in February 1691 accepted a job as customs searcher in Barbados. Although he booked his passage to Bridgetown, he remained in London, hoping for a better job. By October 1691, he was made Surveyor-General in America. Hall, Edward Randolph, 128–35.
1055. Line and a half missing.
1056. Three quarters of a line missing.
1057. John Chipman.
1058. See 25 September 1688.
1059. “By voice.”
1060. “Old England.”
1061. Clearly, Cotton still believed that Plymouth had a chance of retaining her charter, especially if Hinckley traveled to England himself. At the very least, he hoped that Plymouth would be annexed to Massachusetts Bay, not New York. Cotton was not the only one who questioned Hinckley’s inaction regarding the charter. Plymouth’s agent in London, Ichabod Wiswall, repeatedly questioned Hinckley’s reticence, as he did in a July 1691 letter: “that Plymouth, under its present circumstance, should sit silent so long, (may I not say, sleep secure?) is a great riddle . . . if you desire to return to the late experience of the miseries of an arbitrary commissioned government, a little longer neglect of your opportunity may afford it.” “The Hinckley Papers,” 5:285.
1062. The General Court of Plymouth did not send Hinckley; instead it voted in March 1691 to pay Ashurst, Wiswall and Mather for their work in London and asked that Ashurst “would be pleased to use his care & endeavour to procure a charter from the King for a distinct government for his colony.” Plymouth Colony Records, 6:260.
1063. Samuel Arnold (1622–1693) of Marshfield.
1064. Jonathan Russell (1655–1711) of Barnstable.
1065. James Keith (1643–1719) of Bridgewater.
1066. Roger Clap (1609–1691) emigrated to New England in 1630 and served as lieutenant of the artillery company, and captain of the Castle from 1665 until Andros arrived. Savage dates his death as 2 February 1692, but this letter suggests that he died in February 1691. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:390.
1067. New England.
1068. The new Massachusetts charter was approved in London on 7 October 1691 and included all three counties of the former Plymouth Colony beginning with the 2 September draft. Langdon, Pilgrim Colony, 240.
1069. The “eastern parts” included what is now Maine. Massachusetts had purchased the claims of Sir Ferdinando George’s heirs in 1680 and naturally wished to retain the province.
1070. Sir William Phips was appointed the royal governor of Massachusetts.
1071. “Many things fall in between the cup and the edge of the lips.”
1072. Cotton Mather, Little Flocks Guarded Against Grievous Wolves (Boston, 1691) [Evans 563]. Mather’s anti-Quaker tract was probably well received in Plymouth Colony, where Congregationalists often confronted Quakers in their towns.
1073. Not found.
1074. Mather was probably referring to the publication Heads of Agreement assented to by the United ministers in and about London, formerly called Presbyterian and Congregational (London, 1691) Early English Books, 8: 6448 [Wing H1282A]. Mather later reprinted parts of Heads of Agreement in his Blessed Unions . . . . together with a copy of those articles where-upon a most happy union has been lately made between . . . . Presbyterians, and Congregationals, for that of United Brethren (Boston, 1692) [Evans 621]. For some discussion of the union of Presbyterians and Congregationalists in 1690, and for Increase Mather’s contribution to that agreement, see Carl Bridenbaugh, Mitre and Sceptre: Transatlantic Faiths, Ideas, Personalities, and Politics (New York, 1962), 23–34.
1075. Increase Mather.
1076. Mather never joined his father in London.
1077. Joanna Rosseter Cotton to Josiah Cotton, 19 February 1692; Joanna and John Cotton to Josiah Cotton, 2 December 1693.
1078. To Joanna and Rowland Cotton,  August 1694.
1079. Joanna Rosseter Cotton to Josiah Cotton, 14 December 1696.
1080. To Rowland Cotton, 8 and 9 December 1696.
1081. From Samual Sewall, 22 February 1692.
1082. To Rowland Cotton, 23 July 1694.
1083. From Henry Dering, 20 August 1692; To Rowland Cotton, 23 July 1694; To Rowland Cotton, 19 November 1694; To Rowland Cotton, 12 February 1695; To Rowland Cotton, 24 April 1695; To Joanna Rosseter Cotton, [29 May 1695]; To Rowland Cotton, [22 August 1695]; To Rowland Cotton, 13 November 1695; To Rowland Cotton, 4 March 1696; To Rowland Cotton, [6 March 1696?]; To Rowland Cotton, [after 7 August 1696]; To Rowland Cotton, [23 and 24 August 1696]; To Rowland Cotton, [30 October 1696].
1084. From Henry Dering, 12 August 1693.
1085. From Cotton Mather, 5 August 1692; From Henry Dering, 20 August 1692; From Cotton Mather, 20 October 1692; From Henry Dering, 28 January 1693.
1086. Josiah Cotton (1680–1756) was John and Joanna’s tenth child. Josiah was sent to Ichabod Wiswall, the minister in Duxbury, to learn Latin and to begin his formal schooling. Before beginning at Harvard in 1694, Josiah also studied with Jonathan Russell, the minister in Barnstable, and with Boston schoolmasters Joseph Dassert and Peter Burr. He was in Barnstable with Russell when he received this letter. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 4:398–402.
1087. In his manuscript account, Josiah Cotton introduced his transcription of his mother’s letter: “I have many Letters of my Mothers full of kind Expressions & good advice; Three or four of which I shall transcribe—The first I receivd at Barnstable, being yn 12 years old.”
1088. Prov. 8:17: “I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.”
1089. Eccles. 11:10: “Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity.”
1090. Acts 16:14: “And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul.”
1091. Gen. 39:9: “There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?”
1092. 1 Pet. 5:8: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:”
1093. Samuel Cotton was born on 10 February 1678 and died on 23 December 1682.
1094. Probably scarlet fever, which was identified in 1675 but was often mistaken for smallpox or measles. The symptoms include sore throat and fever, a rash and “the characteristic strawberry color of the throat and tongue.” When severe, scarlet fever was usually fatal. John Duffy, Epidemics in Colonial America (Baton Rouge, La., 1953), 129–30.
1095. The printed version of this letter suggests that it was written on 20 February 1690/1. The events Cotton describes in the letter indicate that it was written on 20 February 1691/2, so we have revised the date.
1096. The other two are not found.
1097. James Alling, Cotton’s son-in-law.
1098. Betty may have been awaiting Mary, born on 10 April 1692; see n. 1, above.
1099. Modern-day Chelsea in Suffolk County, translated as “Swamp Hill.” R. A. Douglas-Lithgow, Dictionary of American-Indian Place and Proper Names in New England (Salem, 1909), 179.
1100. John Capen (1613–1692) emigrated to Dorchester and became a freeman in 1634. He served as an artillery company captain, deacon and representative from Dorchester. He died on 6 April 1692. His death date confirms the revised date. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:333.
1101. The “corporation” refers to the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, for which both Rowland and John worked.
1102. William Brett (d. 1713) was the son of Cotton’s friend, Elder William Brett of Bridgewater (see the letter of 6 March 1683). The younger William also served as deacon to the Bridgewater church. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:243.
1103. This suggests that this letter was written by Cotton Mather, describing his father’s work in London for the Massachusetts charter.
1105. The “Bank” refers to the Strawberry Bank section of Portsmouth, in modern-day New Hampshire.
1106. Written in the margin.
1107. Not found.
1108. According to Cotton’s church records, on 7 February he “moved & exhorted to a liberall contribution . . . for the [l]ife & Redemption of the captives lately taken at Yorke, & other [ ] Easterne parts in distresse: The . . . congregation made a very liberall contribution for the ends above.” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 273. See Shubael Dummer’s above letter of 13 January 1691 for similar donations.
1109. On 6 February 1692 French-allied Natives attacked York, and more than 160 settlers, including Shubael Dummer, were either killed or taken captive as they tried to reach one of the four fortified houses in the town. In deference to Benjamin Church’s release of some Native women and children at Pejepscot in 1690, the Indians agreed to release the same number of English. Colonial Wars of North America, 1512–1763: An Encyclopedia, ed. Alan Gallay (New York, 1996), 812–13.
1110. Maj. Elisha Hutchinson was made general commander of English forces in February 1692. Cotton Mather, Decennium Luctuosum (Boston, 1699) in Narratives of the Indian Wars, 1675–1699, ed. Charles Lincoln (New York, 1913), 227.
1111. “For your business is attended to, when up against a wall.”
1112. Possibly Capt. Simon Willard (1678–1731), who had commanded Fort Loyal at Falmouth, Maine, in 1690, just prior to the French attack in May of that year. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1990), 4:555; Samuel Adams Drake, The Border Wars of New England (New York, 1897), 49. Note that Savage lists several other Willey men, as well.
1113. Nathaniel Byfield (1653–1733) of Bristol served on the Plymouth Colony Council of War beginning in 1689. Benjamin Church, The History of the Eastern Expeditions (Boston, 1867), 40.
1114. Wells was “in a practical sense the permanent eastern frontier of New England between 1690 and 1713.” Remote from Boston, Wells suffered in both King Philip’s War and King William’s War. Allied French and Abnaki forces twice tried to attack the fortified village, in 1691 and in June 1692. Sewall’s fears about Wells were, therefore, quite reasonable, albeit overstated. Wells was again attacked in August 1703 but remained inhabited and fortified. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 792; Cotton Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 232–40.
1115. Maj. William Bradford.
1116. Probably the White Horse Tavern.
1117. Sewall was referring to the construction of Fort William Henry (Pemaquid, Maine), which Gov. William Phips began in 1692. Rev. Joshua Moodey, Thomas Danforth, Major William Vaughan and William Brattle accompanied Phips on his initial journey to Pemaquid to scout sites for the fort. The Crown pledged £20,000 to build “a menacing stone tower 29 feet high” above six-foot-thick walls. Protected by eighteen cannon, the fort was impressive. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 348–49.
1118. Sarah Good, Rebecca Nurse, Susannah Martin, Elizabeth How and Sarah Wild were tried and convicted on 29 June 1692 and executed by hanging on 19 July. Witch-hunting in Seventeenth Century New England, ed. David D. Hall (Boston, 1991), 280.
1119. Between 15 July and 29 September 1692, more than forty Andover villagers were accused of witchcraft. Many confessed because of increasing pressure from family members: confessing witches survived, while accused witches who protested their innocence were executed. For the eventual recant of some of these “confessing” witches from Andover, see Upham, Charles W., Salem Witchcraft, With an Account of Salem Village and a History of Opinions on Witchcraft and Kindred Spirits, 2 vols. (Boston, 1867), 2:402–6. For the increasing problem of “confession” during the witch-hunt, see Bernard Rosenthal, Salem Story (New York, 1993), 42–45, 151–52.
1120. George Burroughs, a former minister in Salem, was brought back from his new post in Maine to stand trial in early August. Found guilty, he was executed along with Martha Carrier, George Jacobs, John Proctor and John Willard on 19 August 1692. For Burroughs’s role in the witchcraft trials, see Mary Beth Norton, In the Devil’s Snare: The Salem Witchcraft Crisis of 1692 (New York, 2002), 245–51.
1121. The earthquake in Jamaica on 7 June 1692, destroyed buildings across the island but effectively leveled Port Royal: “within three minutes plunged half the town to the bottom of the harbor.” Hundreds of people died, either drowned or buried alive in their homes, and the death toll grew during the rolling aftershocks that followed. Disease followed and added further to the numbers who died. Ministers naturally interpreted the tragedy as a payment for sinfulness, and several pamphlets were published in London that both detailed the horror and interpreted its meaning. Richard S. Dunn, Sugar and Slaves: The Rise of the Planter Class in the English West Indies, 1624–1713 (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1972), 186–87.
1123. Mather is probably referring to continued dissension about paying for King William’s War and about who had been appointed to command local militias. Taunton was so divided over the matter of military leadership that in April 1690 the General Court of Plymouth voted to allow Taunton’s men to sign up under either Capt. George Macey or Capt. Thomas Leonard, “in order to a present settlement of the militia . . . and for composing the uncomfortable differences that have been and yet continue there.” Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed., Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England (Boston, 1855–61) (hereafter PCR), 6:237. Even this resolution angered many Taunton residents; see Walter Deane et al. to Hinckley (of 7 April 1690) and John Walley to Hinckley (of 16 April 1690), “The Hinckley Papers,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 234–38, 239–42.
1124. The writer of this letter is most likely Henry Dering (1639–1717), who was a shopkeeper in Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:41.
1125. Not found.
1126. Apparently there was a plot hatched by the French sieur de Grandval to assassinate William at his headquarters. The scheme was discovered in May 1692, and since Louis XIV and James II were both implicated, the news caused a sensation and many rumors. Stephen B. Baxter, Willliam III & the Defense of European Liberty, 1650–1702 (New York, 1966), 301.
1127. Admiral Edward Russell, Earl of Oxford (1653–1727), took command of the fleet in December 1690. He considered betraying King William and so avoided battle with the French until 1692. On 19 May 1692, the Anglo-Dutch fleet shattered a smaller French force near Cape Barfleur. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols. (London, 1885–1900) (hereafter DNB).
1128. Some of this news was wishful thinking. Louis had indeed returned to Paris, but only after his armies had taken the city of Mons from the Protestants. William had been unable to raise the siege and had won no such smashing victories. Baxter, William III, 293–94, 303.
1129. John Usher was a wealthy Boston merchant and bookseller who also served as the treasurer for the Dominion of New England and lieutenant governor of New Hampshire. A History of the Book in America, vol. 1, The Colonial Book in the Atlantic World, ed. Hugh Amory and David D. Hall (New York, 2000), 99.
1130. See 5 August 1692.
1131. See 11 July 1692.
1132. The attack on Schenectady began during a fierce blizzard on 9 February 1690, when the residents left only snowmen as defenders of the pallisaded village, believing the weather to be their best protection. Sixty people were killed, twenty-seven were taken captive, and the survivors were left to flee twenty miles to Albany, with many dying en route. The raiding party returned to Montreal with all its captives, unharmed by the English-Mohawk forces pursuing them. An August 1690 letter from Peter Tillton to Massachusetts Governor Simon Bradstreet sought financial assistance for three escaped captives from the Schenectady raid, one of whom, John Webb, presented the letter to Bradstreet personally. Perhaps these were the same captives whom Dering described. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 672–73; Tillton to Bradstreet, “The Hinckley Papers,” 268–70.
1134. This attack was probably in retaliation for the June 1687 French attack on the Seneca, in which several key Seneca villages were destroyed and the inhabitants were forced to flee. Although the Seneca had been French allies, that friendship had started to deteriorate in the late 1670s, and nearly twenty years of warfare between the Seneca and the French commenced in the 1680s. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 684–86.
1135. In August 1692, disturbed by the spiraling witchcraft accusations in Danvers, Salem and Andover, an association of ministers in Cambridge asked Increase Mather to investigate the accepted rules of evidence for use in witchcraft trials. By late September, Mather had drafted Cases of Conscience Concerning Evil Spirits, signed by fourteen other ministers. Mather’s tract condemned the use of spectral evidence, which had been the primary means of convicting most of the accused men and women. Michael G. Hall, The Last American Puritan: Life of Increase Mather (Middletown, Conn., 1988), 256–64.
1136. Cotton Mather’s defence of the trials and of spectral evidence, Wonders of the Invisible World, was published just before his father’s condemnation of the court’s use of evidence and was received badly by a public that had grown suspicious of the trials. Peter Hoffer, The Devil’s Disciples: Makers of the Witchcraft Trials (Baltimore, Md., 1996), 184–85.
1137. 2 Sam. 6:22: “And I will yet be more vile than thus, and will be base in mine own sight: and of the maidservants which thou hast spoken of, of them shall I be had in honour.”
1138. Matt. 5:9: “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”
1139. Not found.
1140. Cotton’s daughter, Elizabeth, married James Alling (1657–1696, H.C. 1679), the minister of Salisbury, Massachusetts, in 1688. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:173–74.
1141. Not found.
1142. Not found.
1143. Robert Orchard was a Boston merchant who had been involved in some controversy with the Court of Admiralty in 1666 and complained against the colony to the king in 1682. He married Sarah Blish of Barnstable (b. 1641) in Boston before 1668. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:314; Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, Md., 1865), 545.
1144. Not found.
1145. Captain John Wing served as one of the first commanders at the newly-constructed Fort William Henry (Pemaquid) and was one of three colonial representatives at the 1693 peace talks at the fort. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 240, 251.
1146. After passing a new witchcraft law modeled on Jacobean statutes, the General Court no longer accepted spectral evidence in witchcraft cases. On 3 January, a court comprising William Stoughton, Thomas Danforth, John Richards, Wait Winthrop and Samuel Sewall began hearing thirty-one cases. Twenty-eight defendants were acquitted, three convicted. Hoffer, Devil’s Disciples, 89–90.
1147. It is unclear which disease was afflicting Guilford; it may have been scarlet fever.
1148. John Leete (1639–1692), son of Governor William Leete, died 25 November 1692. Torrey, New England Marriages, 460; Alvan Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, Connecticut (Baltimore, Md., 1984), 767.
1149. Samuel Bristow (1651–1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 147.
1150. Thomas Cook (d. 1692) lived in Guilford by 1639. Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 248.
1151. Daniel Everth (Evarts) (1638–1692). Torrey, New England Marriages, 254.
1152. See the note concerning his wife’s death, below.
1153. Joseph Clay’s wife was Mary Lord Clay (d. 1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 209.
1154. John Spinning’s wife (d. 1692) was Deborah Bartlett Spinning (1668–1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 1110.
1155. Daniel Bishop’s wife was Hannah Bradley Bishop (d. 1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 77.
1156. Tahay/Tahan Hill (1659–1692) was married to Hannah Parmelee in November 1688. Savage suggests that they had no children, but Rosseter described the death of a child in their house. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:420; Torrey, New England Marriages, 372.
1157. Thomas Blachley (1666–1692) was the son of Aaron (1644–1699) and Mary Dodd Blachley (1647–1683) of Guilford. Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 105–6.
1158. Tabytha Wilkinson Bishop (d. 1692) was the widow of Stephen Bishop (d. 1690). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 76.
1159. Thomas Wright (1660–1692) died on 6 December, and Sarah Benton Wright (1650–1692) died on 25 December. Torrey, New England Marriages, 843; Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 47.
1160. John Evert (1640–1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 390.
1161. Joanna Benton Turner (1660–1692). Talcott, Families of Early Guilford, 1176.
1162. The Rosseter children to whom Josiah referred are Elizabeth (b. 1679), Josiah (b. 1680), Timothy (b. 1683), Samuel (b. 1686), Jonathan (b. 1688), Nathaniel (b. 1689), Sarah (b. 1691), Patience (b. 1692) and Joanna, who was the expected baby, born on 23 April 1693. Aside from these nine children, the Rosseters lost four children in infancy by 1693. Four additional children followed Joanna’s 1693 arrival, and all survived childhood. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:578.
1163. Abigail Morse Everett Jones was William Jones’s wife, and they lived in Guilford. Torrey, New England Marriages, 427.
1164. Weweantic is an area in modern-day Wareham; Sippican is just to the west, in Marion, and Mattapoisett corresponds to the modern-day village of the same name, all on Buzzards Bay. Cotton probably made a circuit of preaching in these settlements.
1165. All of these places are in modern-day Middleborough and Lakeville; see 14 September 1674.
1166. Location is not clear.
1167. An area southward from modern-day Manomet, in Plymouth, to Buzzards Bay.
1168. An area at the head of today’s Acushnet River in southeastern Massachusetts.
1169. Apponagansett is a coastal area in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts.
1170. In today’s Westport, Massachusetts.
1171. Today’s Little Compton, Rhode Island.
1172. Mattakeesitt/Namaaskeesitt is an area near the Duxbury/Pembroke boundary in Massachusetts.
1173. Isa. 55:3: “Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.”
1174. Samuel Treat (1648–1717, H.C. 1669), minister in Eastham. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 208.
1175. Experience Mayhew (1673–1758, H.C. 1720), son of Thomas Mayhew, minister on Martha’s Vineyard. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 138.
1176. Capt. Thomas Tupper Jr. (1638–1706). Tupper was the settled minister of Indian Church at Herring Pond in Sandwich from 1676 to 1706 and replaced his father, who had served the church from 1658 to 1676. Along with his work for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, Tupper served as a member of the Council of War, a town clerk, a selectman and deputy to the General Court from Sandwich. He was well connected in missionary circles as the son of Thomas Tupper Sr. and the husband of Martha Mayhew of Martha’s Vineyard’s missionary family. Cotton seems to have been suggesting that Tupper was resisting Rowland Cotton’s ordination in Sandwich. R. A. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, (Sandwich, Mass., 1984), 68, 191; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 270, 41.
1177. Rowland Cotton.
1178. Reference to Cotton’s Native diary. See “Missionary Journal of John Cotton Jr., 1666–1678,” ed. Len Travers, Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society 109 (1998): 52–101.
1179. Not found.
1180. Not found.
1181. Eastern Natives increasingly worried about winning the war, especially after hearing rumors that the Mohawks might join with the English forces. In August 1693, thirteen Abenaki sagamores attended peace councils at Fort William Henry. The English received generous concessions from them: “They agreed to submit to the English crown, restore captives, resume trade with the English, and to refrain from intercourse with the French.” While this calm lasted only until the devastating summer raids in 1694, some Native leaders began to press for a more lasting peace. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 349–50.
1182. John Alden Jr. (1625–1702), son of the Mayflower passenger, was empowered by both the Andros government and the interim government that followed to carry out both official business and trade along the coast of northern New England. He frequently supplied northern outposts with men and munitions and often negotiated prisoner exchanges with the French. Mary Beth Norton implies that Alden’s activities in Acadia and northern New England were sometimes unscrupulous and even traitorous. For more on Alden, see n. 7 below. Norton, In the Devil’s Snare, 186–93.
1183. The French helped maintain their colony in North America with provisions that they sent each spring. English forces increasingly tried to intercept these deliveries. For example, in 1695 Captain Eames was dispatched from Boston to disrupt the arrival of French stores; when he encountered a larger French fleet than he expected, he and his troops retreated after a brief conflict. The following year, the English tried again with a larger force but again retreated. Thomas Hutchinson, The History of the Colony and Province of Massachusetts-Bay, ed. Lawrence Mayo (Cambridge, Mass., 1936), 68–69.
1184. Joseph Robineau de Villebon (1655–1700) was a native-born Acadian who was educated in France and first served in the French Army on the Continent. Returning to Quebec in 1681, Villebon began a rise to power, eventually serving as governor of New France, the official representative of the French king in North America. Dictionary of Canadian Biography (Toronto, 1966), 1:576–78.
1185. Dering was probably referring to a botched prisoner exchange in May 1692. In 1691, John Alden’s ship was captured by the French, and Alden, his son, Boston merchant John Nelson and the new governor of Acadia, Edward Tyng, were all captured. Alden was sent on parole to Boston to request the release of thirty French soldiers captured at Port Royal by William Phips in 1690. When Alden returned in May 1692, bringing just six soldiers to offer in exchange for his son, Nelson and Col. Tyng, the French governor, Villebon, sent two soldiers to meet him. Alden released the six soldiers on an island and abducted the two Frenchmen. Angry at what he considered to be poor military conduct, Villebon sent Alden’s son and Col. Tyng to France. Nelson was first imprisoned in Quebec and later sent to Paris; he remained captive in France until late 1695, and then under bond to France until late 1697. Nelson did not return to Boston until the summer of 1698, while Tyng died in prison in France. Historian Louise Breen suggests that Alden’s “greed” led to the failure of this prisoner exchange. Dictionary of Canadian Biography, 2:14–15; Hutchinson, History of Massachusetts Bay, 1:378–80; “Letter of John Nelson,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 3d ser., 1 (Boston, 1866), 196; Diary of Samuel Sewall, M. Halsey Thomas ed. (New York, 1973), 1:282–83; Louise Breen, Transgressing the Bounds: Subversive Enterprises among the Puritan Elite in Massachusetts, 1630–1692 (New York, 2001), 200–206; Richard R. Johnson, John Nelson, Merchant Adventurer: A Life Between Empires (New York, 1991), 70–107.
1186. Smallpox continued to afflict New Englanders, even when the numbers infected did not reach epidemic proportions. In 1690, 1692 and 1693, many New England towns reported outbreaks. For the epidemic among New England soldiers returning from New France in 1689–1690, see the letter of 5 August 1690. Duffy, Epidemics in Colonial America, 48–49.
1187. Joseph Dassett (1666–1693, H.C. 1687) was a schoolmaster in Boston until his death. Peter Burr (1668–1724, H.C. 1690) took over Dassett’s school until 1699, when he moved to Fairfield, Connecticut. He later served as deputy, Speaker of the House, and chief judge of the Superior Court. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:389; 4:33–35.
1188. Probably Henry Lunt of Newbury (1653–1709) or perhaps Henry Lunt (1669–1725), also of Newbury. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:131; Torrey, New England Marriages, 479.
1189. Baron de Castin, Jean Vincent d’Abbadie (1652–1707), was born in France and began his military career in Quebec at the age of thirteen; he eventually married an Abenaki woman, the daughter of Chief Madockawando. D’Abbadie perfectly represents the multiple allegiances of many Acadians—he believed himself fully French and fully Abenaki but continued to trade with New England even while France and England were at war along the Acadian border. In 1690, he commanded the attack on Casco, and Gov. Phips felt that he was enough of a threat to warrant hiring French deserters to try to assassinate him in 1692. His headquarters on Penobscot Bay was uncomfortably close to New England’s northern fort at Pemaquid. In this letter, Dering implied that d’Abbadie swore allegiance to the English Crown at John Alden’s urging. An earlier attempt to bring d’Abbadie to the English side had failed; he was probably only pledging friendship and trade, something he had always enjoyed with New England merchants. In 1696, d’Abbadie commanded combined Native and French forces in the attack on Fort William Henry. Dictionary of Canadian Biography, 2:4–7, 14–15.
1190. Three gospels include the story of Christ and the children. For example, Luke 18:16: “But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” See also, Mark 10:14 and Matt. 19:14. Matthew also refers to Christ’s request that believers become like little children: “And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” [Matt. 18:3.]
1191. Joanna is referring to another letter she wrote to Josiah; see hers of 19 January 1692.
1192. There are many references to God’s promise to Abraham and his seed; see, for example, Gal. 3:16, 29 and Acts 3:25.
1193. Josiah prefaced this line, “To this Letter My Father has added . . .”
1194. Josiah prefaced this poem, written on the reverse side of the letter, “I find a Small Poem Endorst on this Letter; The Defects whereof will doubtless be Excused, if composed by one not fourteen Years old—”
1195. Rowland was evidently trying to pacify his son, John, born on 15 July 1693.
1196. The seeds or oil from the seeds of Pimpinella Anisum, or anise, were used primarily as a tonic for digestive disorders. Bateman’s Pectoral Drops, patented in 1726 as a diaphoretic, included anise as an active ingredient. Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980), 331, 368, 369.
1197. George and Elizabeth Fipiny’s daughter, Sarah, died on 14 January 1694. The family had been living in Hull since at least 1683, having moved from Boston. George migrated from Weymouth, England to Hingham, Massachusetts, with his parents and siblings in 1635. Thomas W. Baldwin, Vital Records of Hull (Boston, 1911), 65. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:418.
1198. Written along left margin. Cotton records the dismission and acceptance of John and Anna Waterman in the Church Records. CSM, 22:282.
1199. Elizabeth Saltonstall Denison Cotton (1668–1725) was the daughter of Nathaniel and Elizabeth Ward Saltonstall. She was first married to John Denison (1666–1689, H.C. 1684), her brother Gurdon’s classmate and the settled minister in Ipswich. Denison died in 1689 while Elizabeth was pregnant with their son, John. Elizabeth married Rowland Cotton in September 1692 and had eleven more children. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:271–72, 277–86, 323–26.
1200. Elizabeth’s maternal grandfather, John Ward (1606–1693), was born in Haverhill, Suffolk, England, educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and served as rector at Hadleigh, Essex, from 1633 to 1639, when he emigrated to New England. He was ordained in Haverhill, Massachusetts, in October 1645 as the first settled minister. He remained active as a minister and physician in Haverhill until his death on 27 December 1693 at the age of eighty-seven. Elizabeth’s father, Nathaniel Saltonstall, had married Elizabeth, John Ward’s eighteen-year-old daughter, in 1663. The Wards and Saltonstalls had long been “closely associated in local and colony affairs,” and the marriage merely formalized their relationship. Weis, Colony Clergy, 214–15; The Saltonstall Papers, 1607–1815, Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 80 (Boston, 1972), 49.
1201. Torn; several words lost.
1202. Signature in Thomas Prince’s hand.
1203. Like his father, Rowland pursued an Indian ministry. Increasingly fluent in Native languages, Rowland preached regularly in Mashpah, near Sandwich, to more than fifty Native families. “Account of an Indian Visitation, A.D. 1698,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 1st ser., 10 (1809), 133.
1204. Sir William Phips was the governor of Massachusetts from December 1691 until November 1694.
1205. The Cutts family was prominent in both government affairs and shipbuilding in Portsmouth and Kittery. John Cutts was governor of New Hampshire (d. 1681); the title “Lord” may refer to his son, Samuel (1669–1698); however, John’s brothers, Robert and Richard, also had sons who were active in the political and maritime affairs of the province. Everett Stackpole, Old Kittery and her Families (Lewiston, Me., 1903), 333–34; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:494–95.
1206. Cotton’s wording is confusing. If he were referring to New Hampshire’s governor (he mistakenly referred to Cutts), he meant Samuel Allen, the wealthy London merchant and absentee governor of New Hampshire since March 1692. Allen’s deputy and acting governor was John Usher, Boston’s bookseller and a former member of Andros’s council. Usher became deputy governor in August 1692. Everett Stackpole, History of New Hampshire, 4 vols. (New York, 1916), 1:166–67.
1207. The Barnes family settled in Plymouth by at least 1633, and the elder John Barnes (this John’s grandfather) was a merchant, brewer, innkeeper and land speculator. Barnes family members were also active litigants and often found themselves in legal trouble for excessive drinking, slander and general disorderliness. Clearly, runaway horses were one of their lesser offenses. Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620–1691 (Salt Lake City, Ut., 1986), 240–41.
1208. Mouse-Ear (Hieracium Pilosella) is a milky hawkweed that was used to treat lung disorders and asthma; it also has astringent and expectorant qualities that were useful in treating whooping cough. As Cotton suggested, the mouse-ear plant was collected and dried, then boiled into a tea. The milky extract from the leaves and stem was also applied directly to the skin to aid healing, especially of hemorrhoids. M. Grieve, A Modern Herbal (New York, 1931).
1209. Generally, in referring to this place, residents of Plymouth meant land that became Yarmouth and Barnstable. “Mattacheese” or “Mattakeese” was translated as either “old fields” or “near the water.” The Native inhabitants of the land from the west end of Yarmouth to the east end of Barnstable were called Mattakeset. Cotton probably meant that Barnstable’s minister, Russell, was expecting him. Donald Trayer, Barnstable: Three Centuries of a Cape Cod Town (1939; reprint, Yarmouthport, Mass., 1971), 28–29.
1210. Probably Joseph Bearse (b. 1652), who lived in Barnstable. His younger brother, James (b. 1660), is supposed to have died young. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:149.
1211. Most likely a reference to Rowland’s wife, Elizabeth, and infant son, John, who was born on 15 July 1693.
1212. A letter from Rowland’s father-in-law, Nathaniel Saltonstall, was not found.
1213. Probably this mariner was the grandson of emigrant minister John Lothrop (d. 1653) and son of John Lothrop (1645–1727) of Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:120. See 10 August 1694 below.
1214. There are two possible Prestons: Eliasaph Preston (1643–1707) of Stratford, Connecticut, or Joseph Preston (1646–1733) of New Haven, Connecticut. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:482–83; Torrey, New England Marriages, 602.
1215. Savage lists both a William Collins who removed to New Haven and an Ebenezer Collins of New Haven, who married Ann Leete Trowbridge, Gov. Leete’s daughter, in 1683. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:434–35.
1216. Most likely Rutherford Hall (1675–170[?]), the son of Mary Rutherford Hall Prout (d. 1723), who died in Barbados. Hall’s mother married John Prout (1648–1719) of New Haven in 1681. While Cotton described Hall as “son-in-law,” modern readers would better understand “stepson.” Torrey, New England Marriages, 606; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:332.
1218. Savage includes a Nathan Gold (Gould), who was the wealthiest man in Connecticut in 1670, served as an assistant to the legislature nearly every year after 1657 and died on 4 March 1694. A Connecticut militia officer named Nathan Gold was active in Leisler’s Rebellion, and Torrey lists a Nathan Gold who died in March 1694, who was married first to Martha Harvey and then to Sarah Phippen and lived in Fairfield. These may all be the same man. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:286; Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 370; Torrey, New England Marriages, 308.
1219. Probably Joseph Webb (1666–1732, H.C. 1684), who preached for a few years in Derby, Connecticut, and was ordained in Fairfield, Connecticut, on 15 August 1694. Cotton implied that the church was unsure of calling him, but he served Fairfield’s congregation for nearly forty years. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:301–305.
1220. Cotton seems to have been referring to the anticipated return of Plymouth soldiers from King William’s War.
1221. Not found.
1222. “Under the seal.”
1223. Samuel King and Sarah Dunham King’s (d. 1738) second child was Joanna (b. 1672). Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 39; Torrey, New England Marriages, 439.
1224. For Alden’s role in prisoner exchanges, see 12 August 1693.
1225. This suggests that there may have been some rivalry between midwife Joanna Cotton and Dr. Francis LeBaron. LeBaron was born in France in 1668 and was newly settled in Plymouth, working as a “chirurgeon,” when Cotton wrote this letter. He appears to have maintained his Catholicism in New England, perhaps with the advantage of royally mandated religious toleration after 1692. He married and remained in Plymouth, and his son and grandsons also became doctors. See 6 August 1695. C. Helen Brock, “The Influence of Europe on Colonial Massachusetts Medicine,” Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, 1620–1820, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980), 133.
1226. Esther Cole Atwood married Medad Atwood (b. 1659) by 1686, and they lived in Eastham. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1 425–26, 78.
1227. The election of May 1694 saw the following men chosen as “councillors or Assistants” to the General Court from Massachusetts Bay: William Stoughton, Nathaniel Saltonstall, Bartholomew Gedney, John Hathorne, Isaac Addington, Jonathan Corwin, Daniel Peirce, Thomas Danforth, Wait Winthrop, Robert Pike, Elisha Hutchinson, William Browne, John Foster, John Pynchon, James Russell, Elisha Cooke, Samuel Sewall, John Phillips and Peter Sergeant. The men chosen to represent the former Plymouth Colony were William Bradford, John Saffin, Barnabas Lothrop, John Thacher and Nathaniel Thomas. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:43–44.
1228. Gurdon Saltonstall was Rowland’s brother-in-law; the two graduated a year apart from Harvard College. Saltonstall (1666–1724, H.C. 1684) served as the settled minister in New London, Connecticut, from 1687 to 1707, and as governor of the Connecticut colony from 1707 until his death in September 1724. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 181; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:277–86.
1229. Nathaniel Saltonstall.
1230. Old England.
1231. Benjamin Smith was the only son of one of Sandwich’s early settlers, Richard Smith. Benjamin and his wife had eleven children between 1678 and 1704, but only the eldest son, Elkanah (b. 1685), survived childhood. Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 153.
1232. Experience Mayhew (1673–1758) was the newly settled minister on Martha’s Vineyard in March 1694, and the grandson of the island’s founder, Thomas Mayhew. Primarily concerned with Native churches, Mayhew traveled among Native settlements on the island and translated many sermons and doctrinal tracts into Native languages, which he had learned as a child. In 1695, he married Thankful Hinckley, Gov. Thomas Hinckley’s daughter. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 7:632–39; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 138.
1233. Sakonessit is modern-day Falmouth.
1234. Jonathan Dunham (1632–1717) was born in Plymouth and served as a missionary to the Natives in Saco, Maine, in 1659. Later he settled as a lay preacher—he did not attend college—in Falmouth, Maine, from 1679 until he received the call from the Edgartown church in 1684. Despite lacking a degree, in 1684 Dunham was ordained as a teacher in the church, where he remained until his death. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 74.
1235. Jonathan Russell, minister in Barnstable.
1236. Cotton’s church records indicate that Dunham’s request was read to the church on 8 April and Cotton’s reply was approved on 22 April. The church also voted to send Cotton and elder Samuel Fuller to attend the ordination, which occurred on 11 October. CSM, 22:175.
1237. “Desire” is written in Cotton’s hand over the word “expect.” See the letter of John Cotton to Rowland Cotton, 23 July 1694.
1238. Cotton was referring to the process of escorting his son Josiah to college.
1239. John and Joanna’s son John Cotton (1661–1706) was settled in Yarmouth and Rowland was settled in Sandwich. Joanna evidently spent much of her time traveling to assist her sons and their growing families. Rowland and Elizabeth Cotton were eager for Joanna to help them with the imminent birth of their daughter, Joanna, who arrived on 16 August 1694. Cotton asked that his son wait to call Joanna until Elizabeth was actually in labor—“travell.” Weis, Colonial Clergy, 62–63; Vital Records of Sandwich, Massachusetts to 1885, ed. Caroline Kardell and Russell Lovell (Boston, 1996), 35.
1240. Theophilus Cotton (1682–1726, H.C. 1701) was John and Joanna’s youngest child. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 5:30–37.
1241. Probably Sarah Tobey of Sandwich. Cotton’s church records for 1694 describe a church-child’s sinfulness and his attempts to reach her, but he did not name her: “A chh-child fallen into sin, living else where the chh sent her a letter of Admonition, the yeare after she sent a letter signifying her Repentance which the chh accepted.” By 1750, the Tobey family was one of the five largest families in Sandwich. CSM, 22:175; Lovell, Sandwich: A Cape Cod Town, 164.
1242. Brackets in original.
1243. Benjamin Smith to John Cotton, 20 July 1694.
1244. Brackets in original.
1245. “In my name.”
1246. Evidently, Experience Mayhew was due to leave Martha’s Vineyard for the fall. Mayhew also represented his Native congregations at the General Court. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 7:632–39.
1247. Perhaps Jonathan Russell.
1248. Benjamin Smith.
1249. The Nonesuch was a man-of-war ship. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:828, 375.
1250. Cotton wanted Benjamin Smith to invite the Yarmouth church to the ordination as well; his son, Josiah, was Yarmouth’s minister.
1251. Cotton seems to have been surprisingly well informed about his daughter-in-law’s date of conception.
1252. The town of Oyster River, later New Hampshire, was attacked by 300 French-allied Penobscots and Norridgewocks on 18 July 1694. While the town had fourteen garrison houses, many inhabitants were caught completely by surprise. In all, 100 English were killed and thirty were carried into captivity. Mather describes the attack in his narrative and suggests that “the Treacherous Enemy with a great Army fell upon that Place . . . and Kill’d and Captiv’d Ninety Four.” Cotton vastly underrepresented the casualties. Colonial Wars of North America, 540; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 252–54.
1253. Old England.
1254. Barnabas Lothrop (1636–1735), who served in many powerful positions in Barnstable and New Plymouth, was often chosen as representative on councils with his friend and ally Gov. Hinckley before and after Plymouth’s merger with Massachusetts Bay. Lothrop and his first wife, Susan Clark, had fourteen children, including Nathaniel, who was born on 23 November 1669 and died in 1700. Amos Otis, Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families (1888; reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1979), 1:180, 2:164, 167, 215–16.
1255. John Pugsley of Harwich was injured in King Philip’s War and was disabled for the remainder of his life. He evidently requested and was granted relief funds from the public treasury, for example, forty shillings from Plymouth in 1686. In June 1697 he appealed to the General Court for assistance and was granted £6 “for his relief,” administered by Capt. John Thacher in trust. His petition indicated that he served in the military for two years, and during the “Long and bitter March up to and from Narrogansett &c he mett with an unhappy fall from off an horse by wch he broke one of his Lower ribbs & much hurt his back.” His life was marked by an “unspeakeable deale of misery” and he was unable to work. In 1733, as one of the soldiers from Plymouth Colony who fought in the war, he (or perhaps a son) received a grant of land in modern-day Maine. Given that Cotton used him as a metaphor, his disabled gait must have been rather public and pronounced. His name does not appear on any published lists of soldiers who served in King Philip’s War. See also letter of April 1696. PCR, 6:189; Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:154, 563; George Madison Bodge, Soldiers in King Philip’s War (1906; reprint, Baltimore, Md., 2000), 439.
1256. Probably John, the eldest son of Deacon William Crocker of Barnstable. John was born on 31 May 1637 and married, first, Mary Bodfish in November 1659, and then Mary Bursley in April 1663; he died in May 1711. Alternately, the reference could be to his son, John, born on 17 February 1664, who married Mary Bacon on 5 November 1702. The Crocker and Lothrop families were among the first settlers of Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:474–75; PCR, 43; Otis, Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families, 1:211, 200, 210–11.
1257. John Goodspeed was the second child of Roger and Alice Layton Goodspeed, born in June 1645 in Barnstable. John married Experience Holley in January 1669 and had seven children. The Goodspeeds settled what is now known as Marstons Mills. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:276.
1258. Conflict over local military leadership continued; see the letter of 5 August 1692.
1259. Not found.
1260. Col. Bartholomew Gedney of Salem; see the letter of 12 February 1695.
1261. John Walley (1644–1712) was a prominent man in Plymouth Colony and served in a series of political positions both before and after 1692. His military prowess, however, did not match his political ambition: “John Walley is another example of a prominent politician given military responsibilities far above his abilities.” He commanded New England’s land forces during the 1690 attack on Quebec, but his “indecision and anxiety attack” caused him to wander around aimlessly and never order the attack on the city. His failure did not harm his political future, however; after the war, he served on the Governor’s Council, as Commissioner of War (1693–1694) and as a judge of the Superior Court. While Walley never saw action again, he maintained the rank of major general of the militia. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 770–71.
1262. Deacon Thomas Faunce’s sister, Patience, was married to John Holmes of Duxbury and they had eleven children, including Joseph. It seems that Thomas Faunce paid Daniel Ramsden to serve in the militia in place of his nephew, Joseph. Ramsden was born in Plymouth in September 1649, married Sarah and had four children from 1690 to 1700. (Ramsden’s father, Joseph, was fined for drunkenness in 1671.) Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:452; PCR, 7:135; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850, 29.
1263. Probably James Winslow, son of Nathaniel and Faith Miller Winslow of Marshfield, born on 16 August 1669. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:603.
1264. John and Deborah Barrow of Plymouth had six children, including Joshua, by 1692. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:127.
1265. A John Hawes appears on the list of freemen for Yarmouth in 1689; Savage lists a John Hawes of Barnstable who married Desire Gorham in October 1661, and suggests that he may have lived in Yarmouth. PCR, 206; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:380.
1266. Anthony Savory was in Dartmouth as of 1686 and may have been the son of the Anthony Savory who was listed with the Freemen of Plymouth in 1643. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:28; PCR, 174.
1267. Cotton wrote the time in the left margin.
1268. See Cotton to Joanna and Rowland Cotton, August 1694.
1270. Now twelve years old, Theophilus, like his older brothers, received his early formal schooling first from Duxbury’s Ichabod Wiswall and then from several Boston schoolmasters. It appears that he was still in Duxbury when Cotton wrote this letter. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 5:30–37.
1271. Sarah Cotton was born on 5 April 1670 and evidently was still at home in 1694. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:463.
1272. Captain John Briggs lived in Scituate and served as a ship’s captain. He also inherited his father’s homestead upon Walter Briggs’s death in 1684 and served in several town offices. Brigg’s Harbour (Mishquahtuck) was named after his father, Walter, sometime before 1650. Samuel Deane, History of Scituate, Massachusetts: From Its First Settlement to 1831 (1831; reprint, Scituate, Mass., 1975), 23, 225.
1273. A Steelyard was “a type of balance scale, it consisted of a lever with unequal arms which moved on a fulcrum, the article to be weighed being suspended from the shorter arm with the counterpoise being slid along the longer arm until an equilibrium was produced.” Plymouth Colony Records: Wills and Inventories, ed. C. H. Simmons (Camden, Me., 1996), 559.
1274. Not found.
1275. Rowland’s wife was expecting a baby, Joanna, who was born on 16 August.
1276. Sarah Cotton.
1277. The Penobscot and Norridgewock raiding party that attacked Oyster River on 18 July 1694 divided following that attack. One portion, led by chief Moxus, continued south to attack Groton, Massachusetts, on 27 July. Twenty settlers were killed and about twelve were captured, including two of Gershom Hobart’s children. One child was killed, and Hobart’s captive son, Gershom, was ransomed four years later. This letter suggests that Gershom had escaped, but Cotton was mistaken. See 29 May 1695. Colonial Wars of North America, 540; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 253–54; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:229–38.
1278. Prince’s note: “July. 27. 94 ye Indians fell on Groton, killed more yn 20 carried away more yn 12—took 2 sons of ye R Mr Gershom Hobart, ye Minr yr.”
1279. Rowland’s wife, Elizabeth, came from Haverhill, and much of the Saltonstall family was still living there.
1280. For some comments on Joanna’s midwifery skills, see Nathaniel and Elizabeth Saltonstall to Rowland and Elizabeth Cotton, 27 August–September 1694, Saltonstall Papers, 219–22.
1281. Not found.
1282. Jonathan Russell, minister at Barnstable.
1283. The residents of Middleborough, Massachusetts, established the First Congregational Church on 26 December 1694. According to the church records and to this letter, Cotton had been consulted, and happily attended the church’s gathering with four deacons and brothers of the Plymouth church. Samuel Fuller (1624–1695) had served as the settled minister beginning in 1678 and was ordained Teacher during the gathering ceremony. After Fuller’s death, Thomas Palmer (1665–1743) ministered to the church beginning in 1696 and was ordained in May 1702. Described as “the most unfortunate ministry in the history of this church,” Palmer divided the new church and was dismissed in June 1708 for “misbehavior and intemperance.” Weis, Colonial Clergy, 259, 91, 157; CSM, 22:176; Thomas Weston, History of the Town of Middleboro, Massachusetts (Boston, 1906), 443–44, 309–10.
1284. Samuel Danforth (1666–1727, H.C. 1683), minister at Taunton from 1687 until his death. Appointed by the Commissioners for the Propagation of the Gospel to preach to various Native settlements, Danforth also translated several sermons into Native languages and prepared an Indian dictionary. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:243–49.
1285. Now in Bridgewater, Massachusetts, along the Taunton River; Titicut was home to a group of praying Indians once led by John Sassamon.
1286. Modern-day Lakeville, Massachusetts.
1287. Probably William Brinsmead. Brinsmead attended Harvard from 1644 to 1647, when the college moved from a three-year to a four-year course of study for the first degree. Seventeen scholars were unhappy with the change in program length and left without obtaining degrees. After preaching occasionally in Plymouth, he was ordained at Marlborough in October 1666 and remained there until his death in 1701. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 41. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:16, 560; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:254.
1288. Ephraim and Rebecca Cole’s second child, Samuel, was born in September 1694. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, Mass To 1850, 15–16.
1289. See Cotton to Rowland Cotton, of 23 July 1694.
1290. Perhaps this is a reference to Mary Appleton Thomas, who appears to have been a friend of Sarah Cotton’s. Mary married Nathaniel Thomas on 20 June 1694 and perhaps wanted Sarah’s company while her new husband was away in Boston. Sarah later attended the birth of Mary’s first child; see the letter below of 25 May 1695. Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
1291. While Cotton’s records do not indicate her admission into the church in 1694, his successor, Ephraim Little, listed “Hannah Jacekson The wife of Eliezer Jackson,” as one of the women “that are of the church this 10th of March 1703.” Cotton did note that four members were admitted in 1694, but he did not list their names. CSM, 22:193, 173.
1292. Possibly Rhodie Rad, or rose-root, which Nicholas Culpeper recommended for migraines because it was “somewhat cool in quality.” That same coolness may have alleviated sore breasts as well. Joanna may also have been suggesting Rhodium, which Culpeper recommended to “Encreaseth milk in Nurses.” Nicholas Culpeper, The English Physician Enlarged (London, 1656), 11, 16.
1293. Modern-day Carver, Massachusetts.
1294. Jabez Howland (1644–1712[?]) was a blacksmith in Bristol. He also kept an inn and served as representative to the General Court in 1689 and 1690. Dorothy Chapman Saunders, Bristol RI’s Early Settlers (Palm Bay, Fla., 1991), 100.
1295. Elizabeth Sandy (1691–1694) was three and a half when she died “by a blow from a horse.” She was Joseph and Bethia Lucas Sandy’s fifth child. Saunders, Bristol, RI’s Early Settlers, 121.
1296. Rowland’s difficulties with his congregation continued. Although Cotton had ministered in Sandwich beginning in 1690, he was not ordained until November 1694, and raising his salary seems to have been a problem until 1696. Prior to obtaining a regular salary, Cotton seems to have solicited individual donations for his support, which evidently angered some of his congregants. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:323–26.
1297. Jonathan Russell, minister at Barnstable.
1298. Sackonessit is modern-day Falmouth.
1299. Jonathan Russell.
1300. Samuel Prince (1649–1728) of Middleborough.
1301. Experience Mayhew (1673–1758, H.C. 1720), minister on Martha’s Vineyard. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 138.
1302. Rowland and Elizabeth’s daughter had been born just a few weeks earlier, on 16 August 1694. Kardell and Lovell, Vital Records of Sandwich, 35. This “postscript” was written on a strip of paper dated by Prince, “Plimouth—Sept. 24. 1694” and attached to the bottom of the letter.
1303. Samuel Fuller (c. 1629–1695), son of a Mayflower passenger of the same name, moved from Plymouth to Middleboro, where he was one of the town “celect men,” soon after King Philip’s War. See the letter of 13 September 1694. Margaret Harris Stover and Robert S. Wakefield, eds., Mayflower Families through Five Generations, vol. 10 (Plymouth, Mass., 1996), 7.
1304. Samuel Cuthbert was born in Plymouth in 1643 to Samuel Cuthbertson, an emigrant in 1623. Samuel died in Middleborough on 17 April 1699. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 277.
1305. Samuel Wood, born on 25 May 1647, was the son of Henry Wood of Plymouth. Samuel moved to Middleboro with his father as a young man and served as constable and selectman many times. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:625–26, 629; Weston, History of the Town of Middleboro, 63.
1306. John Bennett was born in 1642 in Bristol, England, emigrated to Jamestown, Virginia, in 1665 and moved to Beverly, Massachusetts, in 1668. After a short settlement in Weymouth, Bennett moved to Middleboro in 1687. In addition to being one of the church’s founders, Bennett later served as a deacon in the church, and as a selectman and town clerk. He died in 1718. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:167–68; Weston, History of the Town of Middleboro, 317–18.
1307. Abiel Wood was another of Henry Wood’s sons, born in Plymouth after 1654. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:625.
1308. Thomas Greenwood (1673–1720, H.C. 1690) was ordained as minister to the Rehoboth Church on 24 October 1694 and remained in service to that church until his death. Weis cites the often noted, but mistaken, birth-year of 1670/1. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 97; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:60–62; CSM, 22:175.
1309. “In the event”?
1310. “Oct.” is penciled in under this date.
1311. See the letter of 27 October 1679.
1312. Unknown; presumably “Betty,” but no surname seems clear.
1313. The “Easterne children” are Native indentured servants. David Silverman, “The Impact of Indentured Servitude on the Society and Culture of Southern New England Indians, 1680–1810,” New England Quarterly 74 (2001): 622–66.
1314. See 11 October 1694.
1315. Jonathan Russell, minister at Barnstable.
1316. Probably Samuel Moody (d. 1729, H.C. 1689), who preached occasionally at Hadley during 1693 and 1694 before turning to a military career by 1705 at St. John’s, Newfoundland. Cotton described “baiting” him for Russell, which may mean that Russell was hoping to invite Moody to Barnstable in 1694, when Moody was still unsettled in a pulpit. Samuel Moody was also at Harvard when Rowland was a tutor. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:406–9.
1317. Probably Mary Dummer, who died on 5 October 1694. Thomas, Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:321.
1318. This account, in another hand, appears on the reverse of the letter.
1319. According to Sibley, Josiah Dwight (1671–1748, H.C. 1687) was ordained “about 1690” in Woodstock, Connecticut, but this letter suggests that he was ordained on 31 October 1694. His thirty-six-year ministry was plagued by poor salaries, contentious congregations, and accusations against him. In 1726, the church voted overwhelmingly to release him. He accepted a call to Dedham’s third church in Westwood in 1735. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:395–400.
1320. “By voice.”
1321. See 25 September 1688.
1322. While there are several possibilities, the reference may be to John Cole (1660–1748), who with Susanna Gray Cole (1668–1727) was found guilty of pre-marital fornication by the Plymouth Court in June 1688. Cotton noted in the church records that in April of that year, Susanna was “called before the church openly for fornication with John Cole before her marriage to him, she exprest some penitential words, & was laid under Admonition by the vote of the church.” PCR, 195; Torrey, New England Marriages, 169; CSM, 22:261.
1323. Jones River is in modern-day Kingston, Massachusetts.
1325. Benjamin Colman evidently told Cotton about William Brattle’s plans not to attend Thomas Greenwood’s ordination in Rehoboth; he presumably did so in a letter, which has not been found. Apparently, Brattle planned to attend Rowland’s ordination in Sandwich in November instead.
1326. Savage refers to a Simon Athearn who lived on Martha’s Vineyard, represented the island to the General Court in 1692, was married to Mary Butler on 4 October 1665 and died on 26 February 1711, at the age of seventy-one. His three sons were baptized in Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:72; Torrey, New England Marriages, 23.
1328. Nicholas Culpeper described how to make oils from several nuts, including sweet almonds, but he recommended an oil of bitter almonds to treat “such as are deaf,” by dropping the oil “into their Ears” as Joanna suggested. Culpeper, The English Physician Enlarged, 211.
1329. Not found.
1330. Deodat Lawson was ordained by the second church in Scituate (Norwell) on 14 November 1694. Prior to his calling to Scituate, Lawson had ministered in Edgartown (1681–1682) and in Danvers (1683–1688). He was dismissed by Scituate in 1698, having returned to England two years earlier. Cotton’s church records refer to Lawson’s church as “chh at the North River.” See the letters below of 22 August 1695 and 9 October 1695. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 124; CSM, 22:176.
1331. Samuel Willard, minister at Old South Church, Boston.
1332. John Norton (c.1650–1716, H.C. 1671) ministered to the Hingham church from 1678 until his death in 1716. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 152; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:394–96.
1333. Probably Jeremiah Cushing (1654–1706, H.C. 1676), who preached in Hingham and Haverhill before becoming the settled minister at the First Church in Scituate from 1691 until illness forced him to stop preaching in 1705. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 66; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:498–99.
1334. Jonathan Russell, minister in Barnstable.
1335. See 13 September 1694.
1336. The Eel River is in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
1337. Not found.
1338. Josiah Rosseter, Joanna Cotton’s brother, lived in Guilford, Connecticut.
1339. James Alling (1673–1696), Elizabeth Cotton’s husband and Cotton’s son-in-law.
1340. Cotton’s daughter Maria (b. 1672) was married to Wymond Bradbury (1669–1734) and lived in Salisbury. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:507.
1341. Jonathan Thing (1654–1694) lived in Exeter and served on both the Grand Jury and as constable. According to Savage, there was a jury of inquiry into Thing’s death, and it ruled that he was “shot by his own gun.” Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:279.
1342. Along with the 1692 construction of Fort William Henry in Pemaquid, Maine, Massachusetts paid to build a fort across the river from Saco in what is now Biddeford. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 349.
1343. Sachem of the Penobscots, one of the leaders of the attack on Oyster River in July 1694. According to Thomas Hutchinson, Madockawando carried the scalps earned in Oyster River and presented them to Quebec’s Governor Frontenac personally. See 23 July 1694. Hutchinson, History of the Colony and Province of Massachusetts-Bay, 61.
1344. Drake describes this event in The Border Wars of New England, 104.
1345. Samuel Philips was a bookseller in Boston who maintained a stock similar in size to those of his competitors Benjamin Harris and Michael Perry. Philips, like most Boston booksellers, specialized in English imports but increasingly also carried colonial imprints. Isaiah Thomas, The History of Printing in America, with a Biography of Printers & an Account of Newspapers, 2d ed., ed. Marcus A. McCorison (1810; reprint, New York, 1970), 185–86; Amory and Hall, History of the Book in America, 99–100, 104, 106.
1346. Old England.
1347. Eleazer and Sarah Rickard had three children, Sarah (b. 1688), Judith (b. 1701) and Lidiah (b. 1704), and lived in Plymouth. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 28.
1348. Samuel King Jr. (b. 1674) and Bethia King later married and had four children in Plymouth, Jonah (b. 1697), Sarah (b. 1699), Rebekah (b. 1700) and Samuel (b. 1702). He was the son of Samuel (b. 1649) and Sarah Dunham King (c. 1650–1738) of Plymouth. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 24; Torrey, New England Marriages, 439.
1349. Rickard and King were both evidently “pressed” (impressed) into military service on behalf of Plymouth.
1350. Not found.
1351. For Walley, see the letter of 10 August 1694.
1352. Possibly Samuel Thacher (1648–1726) of Watertown, whom Savage describes as “leuit.” Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:272–73.
1353. Jonathan Russell, minister at Barnstable.
1354. Benjamin Eaton was the son of Mayflower emigrant Francis Eaton. He was married to Sarah Hoskins in 1660 and had at least one son, William, who died in 1691. Eaton had received land as part of the “first born” land donated by Maj. Josiah Winslow and Capt. Southworth. He qualified for free land in 1662 because he was a needy child born to parents who were in Plymouth by 1627. Stratton, Plymouth Colony, 182, 187, 205, 288.
1355. Rowland’s brother-in-law, Richard Saltonstall.
1357. William Grosvenor (1673–1733, H.C. 1693) was living with his widowed mother in 1694, when she purchased land in Brookline, and he was marked as “Gentleman” on the deed. In 1701, the family moved to Pomfret, Connecticut, and William was invited to preach by the town in Brookfield, Connecticut. He served as the settled minister in this frontier town from 1705 to 1708, despite repeated Indian attacks that undermined his efforts to form a church and took his brother’s life. He eventually settled in Charlestown, South Carolina, where he died. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 98; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:167–68.
1358. Jonathan Russell, minister in Barnstable.
1359. Ichabod Wiswall (1637–1700, H.C. 1651), minister at Duxbury from 1676 to 1700. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 233.
1361. Not found.
1362. Four or five words crossed out.
1363. William Bassett, see 25 September 1688.
1364. Cotton was suggesting that Bassett delay delivering requests from the General Court that congregations hold a general day of thanksgiving because it would coincide with Rowland’s ordination.
1365. See 13 September and 5 October 1694; see also CSM, 22:176.
1366. Not found.
1367. Despite his protests, Samuel Danforth did publish his translation of Increase Mather’s Greatest Sinners Exhorted and Encouraged (Boston, 1686) [Evans 415] as Masukkenukeeg Matchesaenuog Wequetoog Kah Wuttoonatoog Uppeyaonont Christoh (Boston, 1698) [Evans 832]. Charles Evans, American Bibliography (New York, N.Y., 1941–59), 1:70, 129.
1368. Grindall Rawson (1659–1715, H.C. 1678) was the settled minister in the frontier town of Mendon from 1680 until his death. Active in Native missionary work throughout his life, Rawson translated several sermons into Native languages, preached to Christian Indians for twenty-seven years and joined Samuel Danforth on a tour of Native missions for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in 1698. He also served as a chaplain for soldiers on the Canadian expedition of 1691. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:159–68.
1369. Not found. Savage lists both a Samuel Daniel who was born in Watertown on 1 April 1674 and his father, who married Mary Grant on 10 May 1671 and died in 1695. Cotton was probably referring to the son, who married on 15 March 1694 in Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:9–10; Torrey, New England Marriages, 203.
1370. Probably William Thomas, son of Nathaniel Thomas of Marshfield.
1371. Bartholomew Gedney (1640–1698) was a colonel, representative, assistant and judge in Salem. He served in elected positions under both charters and in Andros’s council. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:240.
1372. Bombazeen was one of the Native leaders who signed the 1693 Pemaquid peace treaty but also participated in the renewed warfare that followed as a French ally. In November 1694, he and two Native allies went to Fort William Henry under the flag of truce and were captured by colonial commanders. Bombazeen was taken to Boston, according to Cotton Mather, so “that he might in a close Imprisonment there, have time to consider of his Treacheries, and his cruelties.” Mather included an “interview” with Bombazeen in Decennium Luctuosum. In November 1698, Bombazeen’s petition for release after more than four years’ confinement was heard by the Court, and, despite misgivings, it was granted. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 255, 256–58; Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:601.
1373. Sheepscoat John was one of John Eliot’s praying Indians but had become a French ally prior to the war. John was one of the interpreters at the 1693 peace talks at Fort William Henry in Pemaquid. Mather credited him with the renewed efforts at peace in the spring of 1695. See the letter below of 29 May 1695. Drake, Border Wars, 105–6; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 251, 259.
1374. George and Rebecca Phipenny Vickery (Vicars) probably had five sons who may have been shipmasters, George, Isaac, Israel, Jonathan or Benjamin. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:373.
1375. Possibly Sarah Churchill, born on 10 February 1695 to Rebecca and John Churchill. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 6.
1376. Four and a half lines crossed out, of which only the first four words are decipherable.
1377. Probably more about Thomas Tupper, Rowland’s nemesis; see 13 September 1694 and 26 July 1695.
1378. Probably Seth Pope (1648–1727), who was the son of Thomas and Sarah Jenney Pope of Plymouth and lived in Sandwich and Dartmouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:459; Torrey, New England Marriages, 593.
1379. Fitz-John Winthrop (1639–1707), major, assistant commander of the colonial forces in King William’s War, colonial agent and governor of Connecticut from 1698 to 1707. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:608.
1380. Theophilus Cotton.
1381. Joseph Bradford (1674[?]–1747) lived in Norwich, Connecticut, and was Gov. William Bradford’s grandson. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:232.
1382. Josiah Cotton.
1383. Several words lost to a tear in the letter.
1384. Not found. William Trail sent another letter to Cotton; see his of 15 August 1690.
1385. Josiah Cotton.
1386. Elisha Wadsworth (d. 1741) had married Elizabeth Wiswall in December 1694, and they lived in Duxbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 769.
1387. Samuel Tilden (1660–1739) married Sarah Curtice in 1694 and lived in Scituate. Torrey, New England Marriages, 742; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:301.
1388. Possibly Josiah Holmes of Duxbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 384.
1389. Samuel Bartlett (d. 1713) was married to Hannah Pabodie (1662–1714 or later) and lived in Duxbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 49.
1390. Possibly Samuel Sprague, who lived in Duxbury and married Ruth Alden (1674–1758) in 1694. Or perhaps Samuel Sprague (b. 1640) who married Sarah Chillingworth and lived in Marshfield. Torrey, New England Marriages, 698.
1391. Probably John Tracy (1633[?]–1718), who lived in Duxbury. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:320.
1392. Joshua Ransom’s second wife was widow Susannah Garner (d. 1735). The couple had married in 1692 in Plymouth. She had two living children from her first marriage to Samuel Garner (d. 1689) of Plymouth when she married Ransom: Samuel Garner (b. 1683) and Nathaniel Garner (b. 1685). She was apparently unhappy with John Dotey’s role as guardian after Ransom died. Torrey, New England Marriages, 611; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 6, 86, 134.
1393. Josiah Morton died in 1694; his widow was Susanna Wood/Ward Morton. Torrey, New England Marriages, 522.
1394. In much of the last section of this letter, Cotton seems to have been recounting business from the Court of General Sessions and Common Pleas in Plymouth. The records of this court from 1693–June 1698 no longer remain.
1395. The “old church” is First Church, Boston.
1396. Joseph Bridgham (1652–1709) served as a representative, and as both a deacon and ruling elder of First Church, Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:249–50.
1397. John Dyer (1643–1696). Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:88.
1398. David Copp (1635–1713) was Ruling Elder of Second Church, Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:456.
1399. “Old England.”
1400. James Winslow (b. 1669) married Mary Snow (d. 1717) and had at least two children, Seth (b. 1699) and Mary (b. 1701) in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 829; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 21.
1401. It is most likely that Cotton was referring to the marriage of John Clark (d. 1712) and Rebecca Lincoln (b. 1674), who married on 14 May 1695 in Plymouth. John and Rebecca had five children and remained in Plymouth until John’s death in 1712; Rebecca then married Israel Nichols. Among her eight siblings, Rebecca Lincoln had two older sisters, Mary (b. 27 March 1662) and Martha (b. 11 December 1667). Mary had already married Joseph Bates in 1684 when Cotton wrote this letter, so the jilted older sister he mentioned must have been Martha, who died unmarried in 1741. Torrey, New England Marriages, 157; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 16; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:92–93.
1402. See 5 May 1688. Samuel Torrey published his 29 May 1695 election sermon as Man’s Extremity, God’s Opportunity (Boston, 1695) [Evans 739]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:116.
1403. Probably John Otis (1657–1727) of Barnstable, who served as a representative for more than twenty years, was on the Council for another twenty and married Nathaniel Bacon’s daughter, Mercy, in 1683. Torrey, New England Marriages, 548; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:324.
1405. Several words crossed out; the first two seem to read, “Mr Thomas.”
1406. Cotton Mather described a brief sea battle between an English ship, manned by eight sailors and two servants, and a French ship with more than sixty men near Barbadoes in 1692. One of the seamen he mentiond was named Sunderland; he also referred to two more “that I now forget.” The English sank the French ship in the 1692 battle, but this reference still may have been to the same Sunderland, who evidently was later taken captive by the French. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 239.
1407. Queen Mary died on 28 December 1694. Rowland’s birthday was 27 December. Barry Coward, The Stuart Age (New York, 1980), 338.
1408. Several words crossed out, illegible.
1409. Cotton Mather had recently published spiritual biographies of both Thomas Hooker and John Norton. Mather, Johannes in Eremo, Memoirs Relating to the Lives of the Ever memorable, Mr. John Cotton, who dyed 23d. 10m. 1652. Mr John Norton, who dyed 5d. 2m. 1663. . . . (Boston, 1695) [Evans 724], and Piscator Evangelicus. Or, the Life of Mr. Thomas Hooker (Boston, 1695) [Evans 727]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:114–15.
1410. Josiah Cotton.
1411. Probably the wife of Rev. Thomas Thornton of Yarmouth; she was the widow of a man named More, but her first name remains unknown. They married on 10 June 1683. Thomas Thorton was born in Yorkshire in 1609, educated for the ministry in England, silenced and ejected in 1662. He immediately settled in Yarmouth, where he served as a preacher and physician from 1662 to 1692. Like Cotton, Thornton ministered to Native congregations as well. Cotton’s son John joined Thornton as a ministerial assistant and then served as his successor. Thornton retired from the ministry in 1692 and died in Boston in 1701 at the age of ninety-one. Robert and Ruth Sherman, Vital Records of Yarmouth, Massachusetts to the Year 1850 (Camden, Me., 1975), 128; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 203; Marion Vuilleumier, The Town of Yarmouth, Massachusetts: A History, 1639–1989 (Yarmouth, 1989), 9, 12, 23.
1412. Josiah Cotton.
1413. Theophilus Cotton.
1414. Not found.
1415. For William Grosvenor, see 21 November 1694.
1416. Probably Caleb Cushing (1673–1752, H.C. 1692), who was born in Scituate and ordained in 1698 in Salisbury, where he remained until his death. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 65; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:137–39.
1417. There are two plausible explanations for this passage. Cotton’s daughter, Sarah (b. 1670), may have been following her mother into midwifery. See, for example, 29 May 1695. Alternatively, daughter-in-law Sarah Hubbard Cotton, John’s wife, may have been expecting a child. (One unverifiable Internet source referred to a child, Mercy Cotton, born about 1696.)
1420. James Oliver (1659–1703, H.C. 1680) was a physician married to Mercy Bradstreet and lived in Cambridge. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:198–99.
1421. Probably John Nelson of Plymouth/Middleborough. See the letter of September 1696.
1422. “God willing.”
1423. Flax fibers are used to make linen; presumably, Cotton was describing linen cloth from Guilford.
1424. William Trail; see 15 August 1690.
1425. Not found.
1427. John Woodbridge was born in 1614, emigrated in 1634 and preached briefly in Andover from 1645 to 1648 before returning to England. After being ejected from his pulpit in 1662, he emigrated again to Newbury, where he ministered for a few years as an assistant to his uncle, Thomas Parker. He seems to have left the ministry before 1670 due to a “sad controversy” that “distracted the quiet of the church,” according to Savage. Woodbridge also served as town clerk, schoolmaster, justice of the peace and magistrate, among other offices. He died in Newbury on 17 March 1695 at the age of eighty-two. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 235; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:631–32.
1428. Cotton Mather referred to the “Falling of Two soldiers belonging to Saco Garrison into the hands of the Enemy, who Took the one, and Kill’d the other, some Time in March, 1695,” but did not mention their names. Thomas Hutchinson referred to the killing of one soldier at the Saco fort and the capture of another. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 259; Hutchinson, History of the Colony and Province of Massachusetts-Bay, 65.
1429. Samuel Lucas (1661–1716) was the fourth child of Plymouth’s Thomas Lucas; he married Patience Warren in 1686. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:127; Torrey, New England Marriages, 477.
1430. “By the French Doctor.”
1432. Perhaps Cotton was referring to Gershom Hobart; he mentioned him in another letter to Rowland, of 29 May 1695. News of Hobart’s capture also appears in 11 August 1694.
1433. Samuel Lucas.
1434. Rowland’s brother-in-law, Richard Saltonstall.
1435. Perhaps shipmaster and mariner Isaac Greenwood (1665–1701, H.C. 1685). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:343.
1436. Captain John Gorham or James Gorham, both of Barnstable, sons of Capt. John Gorham, who died in Swansea during King Phillip’s War.
1437. Probably one of the sons of John and Mary Prince Tracey of Duxbury, possibly Stephen, born in 1673, or perhaps John himself. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:320–21.
1438. Maria Cotton Bradbury (b. 1672) was Rowland’s younger sister and was married before 1693. Rowland’s other younger sister, Sarah (b. 1670), was not yet married in May 1695. Torrey, New England Marriages, 90.
1439. “Attire for the head; a head-dress.” Oxford English Dictionary, 2d ed. (Oxford, 1989) (hereafter OED), 8:51.
1440. On 29 May 1695, the General Court acknowledged the recent burning of the bridge and ruled that the inhabitants of Plymouth County should rebuild both the burned Jones River bridge and the decaying Eel River bridge. The residents could use “cuntry rates” to pay for the reconstruction and were “free from being charged towards the building any other bridg out of their Respectiue Townships.” Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:98.
1441. Gov. William Stoughton.
1442. Probably Cotton Mather, Observanda—The Life and Death of the Late Q. Mary (Boston, 1695) [Evans 726]. Evans, American Bibliography.
1443. Neh. 2:10: “When Sanbalat the Horonite, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, heard of it, it grieved them exceedingly that there was come a man to seek the welfare of the children of Israel.”
1444. Isa. 57:1: “The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.”
1445. “By voice.”
1446. Adam Winthrop (1647–1700, H.C. 1668) was the grandson of immigrant John Winthrop. Following his graduation from Harvard, he spent some time as a merchant in England. Winthrop and his family returned to Boston in 1679 and he served as a representative to the General Court from 1689 to 1692. Named by the king to the first Governor’s Council under the new charter in gratitude for his work against Andros, he lost in the first popular election in 1693. Winning every year after that, however, he served on the Council until his death in 1700. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:247–49.
1447. Probably Samuel Appleton (1624–1696), who led Massachusetts forces in King Philip’s War. He also served as a representative to the General Court frequently from 1668 to 1692. An opponent of Andros, Appleton was imprisoned for his activity against the Dominion. Like Winthrop, he was named to the first Governor’s Council but lost in the first popular election of 1693. See 23 September 1675. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:61–62.
1448. Possibly Christopher Phelps of Salem, who married Elizabeth Sharp in July 1658. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:404.
1449. Joseph Capen (1658–1725, H.C. 1677) ministered to the Topsfield Church from 1681 until his death. It seems that he was filling Cotton’s pulpit during his trip to Boston for the election. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:519–21.
1450. Samuel Torrey (1632–1707, H.C. 1653–1656). See 5 May 1688. Cotton referred to Torrey’s forthcoming election sermon in his letter of 8 April 1695.
1451. Hos. 1:7: “But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen.”
1452. Nathaniel Saltonstall (1639[?]–1707) served in many government offices, including those of representative, assistant, commander of the Essex militia and judge. He received the second lowest number of votes in this election; there were rumors that he had appeared at Council meetings drunk, which may have contributed to his loss. Saltonstall Papers, 53–54, 211–12.
1453. Samuel Shrimpton (1643–1698) served as captain, on the Council of Andros, and on the Council of Safety in 1689. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:91.
1454. Eliakim Hutchinson (d. 1717) was a wealthy merchant married to Sarah Shrimpton and served seven years in the new charter Council. In 1695, he was elected to represent “territory formerly called the Province of Maine,” along with Samuel Wheelwright and Charles Frost. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:71; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:510.
1455. Captain Francis Hooke (d. 1695) served in many offices, including that of the treasurer of Maine, and on the Council under both the old and new charters. He died in office on 10 January 1695. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:258–59.
1456. William Bond (1625–1695) of Watertown served as a representative, a member of the Council of Safety and the first Speaker of the House under the new charter. He died in December 1695. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:210.
1457. Henry Dering.
1458. William Stoughton, lieutenant governor (acting governor).
1459. Thomas Danforth, John Pynchon, Wait Winthrop, James Russell, Bartholomew Gedney, Robert Pike, Elisha Cooke, John Hathorne, Samuel Sewall, Samuel Shrimpton, Elisha Hutchinson, Isaac Addington, William Browne, John Philips, Jonathan Corwin, John Foster, Peter Sergeant and Daniel Pierce were elected as councillors (assistants) to the General Court on 29 May 1695. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:71.
1460. William Bradford, Barnabas Lothrop, John Saffin, Nathaniel Thomas, and John Thacher were elected from “lands within the territory formerly called New Plymouth.” Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:71.
1461. On 20 May 1695, several Native chiefs gathered at Fort William Henry at Pemaquid for peace negotiations. They also offered up eight captives, hoping for Native captives in exchange. Colonial representatives Col. John Philips, Lieut. Col. John Hawthorne and Capt. James Converse demanded the return of all English captives before considering their requests, so the talks abruptly ended. Cotton’s optimism in this letter was premature. Despite desperate suffering, Native villages continued to mount attacks on frontier villages, and King William’s War dragged on through 1695. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 259; Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 350.
1462. For Hobart’s captivity, see  August 1694.
1463. See 12 February 1695.
1464. Capt. John March had a varied military career, ultimately marked by dismal failures. In 1691 he led a doomed raid into Freeport, Maine, that was ambushed. He commanded Fort William Henry (Pemaquid) for a few years until he asked to be replaced by Capt. Pascho Chubb in early 1696. March led the September 1697 battle at Damariscotta, Maine, and later commanded forces in the 1703 attack on Pequawket and the 1707 battle at Port Royal, described as a “shameful failure.” Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 413, 482, 577.
1465. Thomas Symmes (1678–1725), Josiah Cotton (1680–1756), Samuel Mather (1677–1746), Josiah Willard (1681–1756), Dudley Bradstreet (1678–1714), Peter Cutler (1679–1721), Nathaniel Hubbard (1680–1748), Samuel Wolcott (1679–1709), Henry Swan (1679–before 1715), John White (1677–1760), John Fox (1678–1756), Richard Billings (1675–1748) and Oxenbridge Thatcher (1681–1772) were placed in this order by the faculty at the conclusion of the freshman year. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:393–33.
1466. See 5 May 1688.
1467. Nathaniel and Mary Thomas.
1468. Mrs. Dummer was going to Plymouth to attend Mary Thomas after the birth of her first child, expected shortly (see below).
1469. John Davenport (1669–1731 H.C. 1687) began preaching in Stamford, Connecticut, in March 1693 after turning down an offer from East Hampton, Long Island, and was ordained in 1694. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:369–74.
1470. Charles Chauncey (1668–1714, H.C. 1686) was the first minister at Stratfield, Connecticut (now Bridgeport), ordained on 13 June 1695. He had ministered in neighboring Stratford since 1691, served as a military chaplain in 1690 and 1691 and probably ministered to the new town of Stratfield since its founding. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:364–66.
1471. Jonathan Silleck and Nathan Gold were elected as new assistants to the Connecticut General Court on 9 May 1695 as replacements for two recently deceased assistants, John Burr and William Pitkin. Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, ed. Charles Hoadly, vol. 4 (1868), 138.
1472. Samuel Andrew (1656–1738, H.C. 1675) was ordained in Milford, Connecticut, on 18 November 1685, after many years as a fellow at Harvard College. In 1699, he helped to found Yale College and served as its president. The election sermon appears not to have been published. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:457–62.
1473. This salutation and the section that follows are in Joanna Cotton’s hand.
1474. Midwife Joanna caught young Nathaniel Thomas on 27 May 1695. Nathaniel was the first child for Nathaniel (1664–1738) and Mary Appleton Thomas (d. 1727) of Plymouth/Marshfield. While the baby survived the illness Joanna described, he later died as a young child on 5 April 1699. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 16; Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
1475. This offers another hint that Joanna may have been raising her daughter Sarah to become a midwife; see also 24 April 1695, in which Sarah seems to have been waiting for a birth. Sarah also appears to have been close to Mary Thomas (see 13 September 1694) and may have been attending the birth to help her friend.
1476. Rebecca Morton was accepted as a church member by Cotton’s Plymouth congregation on 21 July 1695. According to Savage, Ambrose and Mary Bumstead Dawes had a daughter, Rebecca, on 25 February 1666. Rebecca married Eleazer Morton of Boston and Plymouth in 1692 or 1693, following the death of her first husband, Benjamin Marshall, sometime after 1688. Cotton’s church records indicate that she had been living in Plymouth at least since 1693, when her son Eleazer was baptized. He also noted that she was “a member of the third church in Boston” at the time of that baptism. Rebecca Morton would later become Cotton’s final undoing in Plymouth. See the letter below of 18 June 1697. Torrey, New England Marriages, 522, 490; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:24; CSM, 22:280.
1479. Rev. 2:19: “I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first.”
1480. Thomas Tupper seems to have continued his conflicts with Rowland. See 13 September 1694 and 12 February 1695. “JS” is probably James Skeff, one of the twenty members of First Church Sandwich when Rowland arrived. Rowland delayed administering the sacrament for nearly a year after his ordination in November 1694. Sandwich church records indicate that on 15 September 1695 “Mr Rowland Cotton first administered the Sacrament of the Lords Supper here.” Between September 1695 and October 1721, Rowland administered the Lord’s Supper 138 times. First Parish Church (Sandwich, Mass.), New England Historic Genealogical Society, ms. 638:291.
1482. John Chipman was the elder at Barnstable.
1483. Edward Wentworth, son of Samuel and Elizabeth Wentworth, was born on 5 February 1693 and died on 24 July 1695. Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths, 1630–1699, ed. William Appleton (Baltimore, Md., 1978), 209, 225.
1484. “Old England.”
1485. Nathaniel Alden (d. 1702) married Hepzibah Mountjoy in 1691 and lived in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 8.
1486. Prince’s note: “Suppose in Aug. 6.”
1487. Josiah Cotton.
1488. Theophilus Cotton.
1489. Thomas Weld (1653–1702, H.C. 1671) was the settled minister in the frontier town of Dunstable from at least 1679 until his death and served as a representative to the General Court in 1689. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:388–91.
1490. Not found.
1491. Elizabeth Cotton’s husband, James Alling.
1492. Cotton’s daughter, Maria Cotton.
1493. Probably Jeremiah Cushing (1654–1706, H.C. 1676), the minister in Scituate from 1691 to 1705. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 66.
1494. Prince’s note: “Sep. 8. 95 is o & by his Letr of July 26. 95, He was to Preach at Rhode Island on Sep. 8.”
1495. Elisha Holmes and Sarah Bartlett married on 2 September 1695 in Plymouth and had eight children from June 1696 to March 1709. Torrey, New England Marriages, 383; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 32–33.
1496. “French King.”
1497. “French doctor.”
1498. The French doctor was successful. Dr. Francis LeBaron (1668–1704) married Mary Wilder (b. 1668) of Hingham on 6 September 1695, and they had three children, James (b. 1696), Lazaros (b. 1698) and Frances (b. 1701). See 12 June 1694. Torrey, New England Marriages, 458; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 16–17.
1499. Prince’s note: “Aug. 1695—Aug 22 or 29.”
1500. Probably Robert Ransom, either the father (d. 1697) or son (d. 1723), who both lived in Plymouth. See 29/30 April 1697. Torrey, New England Marriages, 611.
1501. Not found.
1502. “Not undeservedly.”
1503. “God willing.”
1504. Deborah Jacob Thomas (1643–1696) was the wife of Nathaniel Thomas (1643–1718) and lived in Marshfield. Her sister, Hannah Jacob Loring French (1640–1720), was married to Stephen French and lived nearby in Plympton. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:534; Torrey, New England Marriages, 735, 285.
1505. Lancing or “opening” an infected breast of a lactating mother was usually a last resort, after herbs and frequent manual expressions of milk to relieve sore, blocked ducts had failed to ease the pain. Breastfeeding difficulties were a common reason for midwives to revisit patients, even nearly a year after birth. Laurel Thacher Ulrich, A Midwife’s Tale (New York, 1990), 112–13, 196–97.
1506. Cotton Mather was referring to an incident at Saco in August 1695: “Sargeant Haley, Venturing out of his Fort at Saco, Stept into the Snares of Death.” Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 260.
1507. Lidiah Griswold Bartlett delivered her second baby, Samuel, on 29 August 1696, according to Van Antwerp’s Vital Records. This may have been the baby Joanna was helping to deliver, since Thomas Prince was unsure whether this letter had been written on 22 or 29 August and Antwerp may have been mistaken by one year. Otherwise, the baby referred to in this letter did die and Lydia had another one a year later on nearly the same date, which seems less likely. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 14.
1508. Deodat Lawson’s father was Rev. Thomas Lawson of Denton, Norfolk, in England. Deodat emigrated to New England and served as the minister in Edgartown and Danvers before accepting ordination in Scituate’s second church in November 1694. He was dismissed by that congregation in 1698, when neighboring clergy advised Scituate to begin looking for a new minister, given Lawson’s prolonged absence of more than two years “merely for secular advantages, and taking no heed to the ministry which he hath received of the Lord.” Evidently, Cotton had heard correctly about Lawson’s proposed travel plans. See the letter below of 9 October 1695. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 124; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:63–64; Old Scituate (1921; reprint, Scituate, Mass., 1970), 171.
1509. “Old England.”
1510. Possibly 2 Kings 2:12: “And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more: and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces.”
1511. Like many young graduates, Ephraim Little (1676–1723, H.C. 1695) first worked as a schoolteacher in Plymouth. Following the second adultery accusation against Cotton in 1697, Little replaced him as the settled minister there. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:248–52.
1512. Dr. John Cutler came to Massachusetts from Holland and settled in Hingham before 1674. He served as a surgeon in King Philip’s War and taught Boston’s most prominent doctor, Zabdiel Boylston. Historian Philip Cash credits Cutler and other European-trained physicians for an increasingly “professional” medical community in early eighteenth-century Boston. Here Cotton alludes to the mentoring that Cutler performed for New England’s doctors-in-training. Philip Cash, “The Professionalization of Boston Medicine, 1760–1803,” Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, 1620–1820, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980), 73; Brock, “The Influence of Europe on Colonial Massachusetts Medicine,” 124.
1513. Samuel Fuller (1624–1695) ministered to the Middleborough church from 1678 until his death on 17 August 1695. Before becoming a minister, he served as an elder in Cotton’s Plymouth congregation. See 13 September and 5 October 1694. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 90.
1514. John Bennett (d. 1718) was one of the church founders in Middleborough and a deacon. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:167–68.
1515. According to Cotton’s church notes, the church in Middleborough called Isaac Cushman (1648–1732), the son of Plymouth’s elder, Thomas Cushman, and an elder himself. Cotton’s congregation met on 1 September and heard that Cushman had two calls. The Plymouth church “manifested generally . . . their desires not to part with him, but that he should be an elder here in his blessed Fathers room,” but also stated that he should go “where the orderly providence of God should call him.” Rather than proceed to Middleborough or remain in Plymouth, Cushman instead joined the “New Society,” or the splinter church at Plympton. Cotton did not accept this split easily, but a reconciliation was reached in the summer of 1696, when “every one of us expresse our consent hereunto by an universall lifting up of our hands, & this was declared to be a finall issue of this matter & all differences that had thereby bin occasioned amongst us . . . mutual forgivenesse of all past offences.” The New Society at Plympton would not become a fully separated church until October 1698, so Cushman temporarily remained a deacon in Cotton’s church. Cotton would later claim that his conflicts with Cushman encouraged him to leave Plymouth in 1699. See 2 September 1687. CSM, 22:177–79.
1516. Settlers around modern-day Monponset ponds in Halifax, Massachusetts.
1517. William Hoskins Sr. died on 7 September 1695. See 8 November 1684 and 3 March 1688. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135.
1518. Elizabeth Hoskins (b. 1646) married Ephraim Tilson (1636[?]–1715) on 7 July 1666. Savage suggests that Elizabeth was William Hoskins’s daughter and that she did not die in 1695. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 665; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:466.
1519. Robert Ransom evidently struggled emotionally; Cotton later wrote about his attempted suicide. See 29/30 April 1697.
1520. Theophilus Cotton; not found.
1521. Richard Middlecott emigrated from Wiltshire and in 1672 married into a well-established New England family; his second wife, Sarah, was John Winslow’s daughter and Miles Standish’s widow. His three daughters married equally powerful men in the colony. He served on the Council under the new charter but lost in the first popular election and died in 1704. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:205.
1522. “Old England.”
1523. Benjamin Soule (1665[?]–1729) married Sarah Standish (1667–1740) in 1693 or thereabouts and had five children in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 693; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 36.
1524. See 1 November 1694 and 22 August 1695.
1525. “Old England.”
1526. Capt. Benjamin Stetson (1641–1711) of Scituate married Bethia Hawke (b. 1644) on 15 August 1665 in Hingham, and they had ten children. Benjamin served as a representative to the General Court both in Plymouth and in Boston after the consolidation of New Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay in 1693. A record of Bethia’s death has not been found, and Benjamin did not marry a second time, so the authors suspect that Bethia survived the accident that Cotton described. Torrey, New England Marriages, 706; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:183; George Lincoln, et al., History of the Town of Hingham (Hingham, Mass., 1893), 3:294.
1528. Mrs. Fish was admitted to First Church Sandwich on 8 December 1695. First Parish Church (Sandwich, Mass.), New England Historic Genealogical Society, ms. 638:1.
1529. A firkin is a small wooden keg.
1530. Prince notes: “1695. Oct 24 was ye Gen Fast.”
1531. Isa. 3:8: “For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen: because their tongue and their doings are against the Lord, to provoke the eyes of his glory.”
1532. John Brown (1665–1695) of Newbury died following a brief Native captivity. (Wing was one of the commanders at Pemaquid in Maine.) Cotton Mather decribed the event: “On Oct. 7, the Indians entered the House of one John Brown at Newbury, carrying away Nine persons with them . . . The Captain Retook all the Captives; but the Indians, in their going off Strook them all so Violently on the Head with the Clubs . . . that they afterwards all of them dyed . . . Some of them Lingred out for half a year, and some of them for more than a whole year . . . at last they Died, with their very Brains working out at their Wounds.” Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:266, 271; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 260.
1533. Eleazer Churchill.
1534. Josiah Cotton was at Harvard; the students from Newbury at Harvard in 1695 were Richard Brown (1675–1732, H.C. 1697), Daniel Greenleaf (1680–1763, H.C. 1699), Moses Hale (1678–1744, H.C. 1699) and Samuel Moody (1676–1747, H.C. 1697). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:336–41, 356–65, 472–76, 476–78.
1535. Prince notes, “suppose Oct. 1. 95.” See n. 19 below for a different date.
1536. “Seamstress.” OED, 14:963.
1537. “Throat-distemper” was a combination of diptheria and scarlet fever that erupted in several epidemics in New England during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. James Cassedy, “Church-Record Keeping and Public Health in Early New England,” Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, 1620–1820, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980), 253.
1538. Perhaps William Brattle (1662–1717, H.C. 1680, 1703). Brattle was not settled as the minister in Cambridge until 1696, so he may have offered to help Rowland. See the above letters of 16 July 1687 and 30 October 1694. Alternatively, Cotton may have been referring to William Brinsmead (d. 1701, H.C. 1644–1647), who had preached in Plymouth from 1660 to 1665 and was the first ordained minister in Marlborough starting in 1666. See the above letter of 13 September 1694. Both men were Cotton’s friends. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 38–39, 41
1539. Perhaps Cotton was referring to his daughter-in-law’s pregnancy, then in its final weeks. Elizabeth Cotton, Rowland and Elizabeth’s third child, was born on 3 November 1695, so if Cotton’s date was correct, the “embryo” arrived a few weeks early. Kardell and Lovell, Vital Records of Sandwich, 35, 1371.
1540. “French Governor.”
1541. Cotton Mather described Hammond’s unusual ordeal: “on July 6 Major Hammond of Kittery fell into the Hands of the Lurking Indians . . . Hammond was now aboard a Canoo, intending to put ashore at Saco; but some of the Garrison-Soldiers there, not knowing that they had such a good Friend aboard, inadvertently Fired upon the Canoo; and so the Indians carried him clear away. They transported him at length to Canada, where he met with Extraordinary Civilities; Count Frontenac, the Governor himself, nobly purchased him of his Tawny master, and sent him home to New-England, by a Vessel, which also fetch’d from thence a Considerable Number (perhaps near Thirty) of English Prisoners.” Prince’s note on the manuscript was evidently copied directly from Mather’s text. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 259–60.
1542. Prince’s note: “July. 6. major Hamond of Kittery fell into ye hands of ye Indns wo carried him to Canada, [where] C. Frontenac treated him very civilly & sent him home by a vessell wc fetched near 30 English prisoners.”
1543. Modern-day Plympton, Massachusetts.
1544. See 6 August 1695.
1545. Deodat Lawson had evidently not yet left for England when Cotton wrote this letter. See the above letters of 22 August 1695 and 1 November 1694.
1546. Either Jeremiah Cushing (1654–1706, H.C. 1676), minister at Scituate, or Caleb Cushing (1673–1752, H.C. 1692), not yet settled. See the above letters of 1 November 1694 and 24 April 1695. Clearly, Cotton’s opinion of Cushing had changed since the spring. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 65, 66.
1547. Hopestill Besbedge (often written as Bisbee) was born in Scituate in 1645 and in 1680 married Sarah King (b. 1650) in Hingham. Torrey, New England Marriages, 71; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:171.
1548. Isaac Winslow Jr. (1670–1738) survived this illness and married Sarah Wensley on 11 July 1700 (Cotton Mather officiated). Sherman and Sherman, Vital Records of Marshfield, 22, 390.
1549. James Bailey (1650–1707, H.C. 1669) ministered in Danvers and Killingworth, Connecticut, but after 1691 worked mainly as a physician; he died in Roxbury after a lengthy and debilitating illness. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 24–25; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:291–99.
1550. Probably John Smith (1614–171[?]), who was the minister in Sandwich from 1673 until his retirement in 1688 and may have returned (reluctantly it seems) to help Rowland. See the above letters of 25 September and 1 October 1688. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 189–90.
1551. Perhaps “a contrivance by which a rope, chain, or hook is used to suspend something.” OED, 6:1089.
1552. Josiah Cotton.
1553. Elizabeth Crow Clark, Deacon Thomas Clark’s wife, died on 13 November 1695. This death establishes the date of this letter. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135; Torrey, New England Marriages, 159.
1554. Evidently, only Francis LeBaron, whom Cotton consistently calls “the French doctor,” attended Elizabeth Clark when she died.
1555. Prince’s notes speculate that the letter may be dated “Oct 28 or Nov 4, 11, 18.” When read in context with other letters, especially that of 13 November 1695, the later November date is more appropriate.
1556. “1695” was added by Prince.
1557. See 13 November 1695.
1558. Prince notes, “Maj. Hammond was taken July. 6. 1695.”
1560. Prince notes, “Nov. 24. 1695 is . [sunday].”
1561. John Smith; see 13 November 1695.
1562. Samuel Torrey, minister in Weymouth. See the above letter of 5 May 1688.
1563. Lt. Gov. William Stoughton had been the acting governor since Phips’s death in February 1695.
1564. Presuambly William Shertliff (1657–1730), who was born in Plymouth and married Susanna Lothrop (1664–1726), the daughter of Barnabas Lothrop, in October 1683; they had fourteen children in Plymouth and Barnstable. Torrey, New England Marriages, 672; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:92.
1565. See 6 August and 1 October 1695.
1566. Reference to Gen. 3:7: “And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.”
1567. Rowland Cotton.
1568. Thomas Tupper.
1569. Elizabeth Cotton’s husband, James Alling.
1570. The only marriage that fits these initials is that of Edward French to Mary Winsley, of 17 September 1695 in Salisbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 284; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:205.
1571. Henry French married Elizabeth Collins on 7 November 1695 in Salisbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 284.
1572. Abigail Starbuck Coffin had married Peter Coffin (1630–1715) in 1657 or thereabouts and died in Exeter, New Hampshire. Peter Coffin served in King Philip’s War; he was elected to serve as a representative to the General Court, chosen to be a councillor and appointed to serve as a judge on the Supreme Court of New Hampshire. He does not seem to have remarried after Elizabeth’s death. Torrey, New England Marriages, 166; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:419.
1573. Cotton evidently favored the name Thomas for his cousin’s fourth child. “Cos John” was John Cotton (1658–1710, H.C. 1678), the minister at Hampton, son of Seaborn and Dorothy Bradstreet Cotton. The baby, Thomas, was born on 28 October 1695 and baptized on 26 April 1696. Cousin John’s, wife, Ann, may also have favored Thomas as an honor to her father, Thomas Lake. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:463–64; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:2–5.
1574. Elisha Eldred (1653–1739) was the son of William Eldred of Yarmouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:107.
1575. Duffle is “coarse wollen cloth having a thick nap or frieze.” OED, 4:1108.
1576. Prince’s note, “Dec. 95, or January. 95/6. Sr Little took his 1st Degree in 95.” The Massachusetts Historical Society has catalogued the letter as January 1696.
1577. Not found.
1578. Jonathan Russell?
1579. See 13 November 1695.
1580. Joshua Moody.
1581. James Barnaby was born in Plymouth, married Joanna Harlow and had two children in Plymouth, James (b. 1698) and Ambrose (b. 1706). Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:117. Torrey, New England Marriages, 42.
1582. Savage does not list a “G Barrow,” but New England Marriages lists a George Barrows, who married Patience Simmons on 14 February 1695 in Plymouth. They remained in the town. Torrey, New England Marriages, 47.
1583. Edward Tompson (1665–1705, H.C. 1684) first ministered in Simsbury, Connecticut, from 1687 until the summer of 1691, apparently without ever being ordained. In 1691, he began preaching to a splinter congregation from the western portion of Newbury, Massachusetts, much to the dismay of Newbury’s town fathers. Continued conflict prevented Thompson’s settlement into 1695, when he accepted a call from Marshfield, Massachusetts. He was ordained on 14 October 1696. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:306–9; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 205.
1584. Prince’s note: “Mr Edward Thompson ordained at Marshfield Oct. 14. 1696.”
1585. Modern-day Halifax, Massachusetts.
1586. See the letter of 21 November 1695.
1587. Not found.
1588. John Tulley, An Almanac for the Year of our Lord, MDCXCVI (Boston, 1696) [Evans 776]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:122.
1589. See 20 August 1692.
1590. Extract of pennyroyal (mentha pulegium) was usually administered as a tonic. Like feverfew, pennyroyal was primarily used to treat menstrual or postpartum complaints. Ulrich, A Midwife’s Tale, 355, 357; Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, CSM, 57:376.
1591. Rowland’s brother-in-law, Richard Saltonstall.
1592. While she seemed to caution Rowland in this letter, Joanna’s use of bloodletting varied; see for example, the letter of 8 March 1686, by which she advised her son to “let blood.” Like many physicians, Joanna believed that blood-letting should be practiced in conjunction with pharmaceuticals. J. Worth Estes, “Therapeutic Practice in Colonial New England,” Medicine in Colonial Massachusetts, 1620–1820, CSM, 57 (Boston, 1980), 300–301, 303.
1593. For Torrey’s election sermon, see the above letters of 8 April and 29 May 1695.
1594. See 27 August 1695.
1595. Hannah Phinney Morton (b. 1657) married Ephraim Morton (1648–1732) ca. 1677 in Plymouth and they had five children from 1677 to 1685. Hannah survived this illness, dying in 1731. Torrey, New England Marriages, 522; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 27.
1596. There are many possibilities, but the most likely follows from Thomas Faunce’s town records for Plymouth: “Mary Holmes, daughter of Mr. John Holmes of Duxbery, decd 8 March 1695/6.” Her illness, therefore, may have lasted three months or more. The Duxbury vital records refer to a Mary Holmes, daughter of Josiah and Hannah, born on 5 November 1674. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135. Vital Records of Duxbury, Massachusetts, to the Year 1850 (Boston, 1911), 93.
1597. See 21 November 1695.
1598. Betty Allyn was Cotton’s daughter, Elizabeth Cotton Alling.
1599. Prince’s note: “Rev. James Allen.” James Alling (1657–1696, H.C. 1679) ministered to the church in Salisbury from 1682 until his death on 3 March 1696. Alling was married to John and Joanna Cotton’s daughter Elizabeth. Elizabeth married Alling’s pastoral successor, Caleb Cushing, in March 1699. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 19; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:173–74.
1600. Pasco Chubb assumed command of Fort William Henry at Pemaquid after John March resigned. In February 1696, as Cotton described, he foolishly ordered the killing of several Native chiefs (including Egeremet and Abenquid) who had come to the fort to discuss prisoner exchange, igniting renewed hostilities later in the summer. See the letter below of September 1696. Cotton implied that the Natives struck first and that Chubb acted in self-defense. Most contemporaries and historians have disagreed and criticized Chubb’s rash actions. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 350, 137; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 261–62, 270; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 108.
1601. Prince’s note: “suppose. Mar. 5. 95/6.”
1602. Not found.
1603. Nathaniel Parkman (b. 1655) was a Boston mariner like his father, Elias (d. 1662), who was lost at sea. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:359.
1604. On Naushon Island, Buzzard’s Bay, Massachusetts.
1605. Presumably Josiah Rosseter, but the letter has not been not found.
1606. Not found.
1607. Probably Samuel Hinckley, the son of Governor Thomas Hinckley. Samuel was born in February 1653 and married Sarah Pope in November 1676 in Barnstable, where they had eleven children. He died on 19 March 1697. Otis, Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families, 2:38–40.
1608. Isaac Lathrop (b. 1673) was the son of Meletiah and Sarah Farrar Lathrop of Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:121.
1611. It seems as though Jonathan Russell (the minister in Barnstable) and Rowland Cotton (the minister in Sandwich) were merely exchanging pulpits.
1612. Prince’s note: “suppose March. 6. 95/6.”
1613. Mehitable Mather was Cotton and Abigail Mather’s sixth child, born after April 1695, and is described only as dying “young.” Horace C. Mather, Lineage of Rev. Richard Mather, (Hartford, Conn., 1890), 79.
1614. Their daughter Elizabeth was grieving for her husband, James Alling, who died on 3 March, but Cotton’s postscript indicates that he didn’t know that Alling had died. See the above letter of 4 March 1696.
1615. Probably Dr. James Oliver (1659–1703, H.C. 1680) of Cambridge, who worked as a physician following his graduation. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:198–99.
1616. Isaac Lobdell (1637–1718) was a freeman in Plymouth in 1673 but also resided in Hingham and Hull. The letter he sent to Cotton has not been not found. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:102.
1617. Edward Bulkley was born in Bedfordshire in 1614, emigrated to Boston in 1635 and briefly attended Harvard College but did not graduate. He first ministered in Marshfield from 1642 to 1656 and then accepted a call from Concord, where he served from 1659 to 1694. He gave the Artillery Election Sermon in 1679 and the Election Sermon in 1680; neither was published. He died on 2 January 1696. In the left margin of the letter before “old,” Cotton drew a hand pointing to “old.” Weis, Colonial Clergy, 45.
1618. According to Samuel Sewall, Penn Townsend was elected Speaker of the Massachusetts House on 28 February 1695/6. Thomas, Diary of Samuel Sewall, 348.
1619. Nehemiah Jewett (1643–1720) lived in Ipswich and was married to Exercise Pierce (1647[?]–1731); he served as a representative for Ipswich from 1689 to 1694 and was speaker in 1694. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:549.
1620. Elisha Hedge (1642–1713) lived in Yarmouth, where Rowland’s brother John (1661–1706, H.C. 1681) was a minister from 1691 to 1705. Torrey, New England Marriages, 363; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 62.
1621. This second postscript was written beneath the address.
1622. James Alling, Cotton’s son-in-law.
1623. Prince’s note: “suppose April. 96.”
1624. Not found.
1625. Not found.
1626. Nathaniel Thomas’s (1643–1718) wife, Deborah Jacob, died on 17 June 1696 in Marshfield. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:281–82; Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
1627. Probably Nicholas Noyes (1647–1717, H.C. 1667), the minister in Salem. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 153.
1628. Probably John Emerson Jr. (1670–1732, H.C. 1689), who was preaching in Manchester, Massachusetts, from 1695 to 1697. He preached in Salem as the settled minister from 1697 to 1699. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 80.
1629. Prince’s note: “R Mr Philips of Rowly D Apr. 22. 96.” Samuel Philips (1625–1696, H.C. 1650), the minister in Rowley, died on 22 April 1696. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 164.
1630. Col. Bartholomew Gedney of Salem; see 12 February 1695.
1631. On 10 March 1695/6, Susanna Andrews, a single woman living with her parents in Lakenham, was indicted for murdering her newborn twins in September 1695. Her parents, John and Esther, were also indicted for hiding Susanna and secretly burying the dead babies. Massachusetts Archives, Suffolk County Files, Reel 20, vol. 37, #3279.
1632. Isaac and Rebekah Cushman had six living children by 1696; the last recorded birth was that of Fear, born on 10 March 1689. The last three children, all of whom died as newborns, seem not to have been recorded. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 11.
1633. For this “Pugsley” reference, see 10 August 1694.
1634. Matthew Fuller (1663–1744) lived in Scituate/Barnstable. Torrey, New England Marriages, 289.
1635. Cotton was worried about losing his servant, Mary, especially since his daughter, Sarah, married William Bradbury on 16 March 1696 and was no longer living at home. Torrey, New England Marriages, 90.
1636. “A waistcoat” or “medicated cloth applied to the chest” or “an ornamental covering for the chest . . . worn by women under the lacing of the bodice.” OED, 16:753.
1637. These last two postscripts were written beneath the address.
1638. In February 1696, informants revealed a plot to assassinate King William III during one of his regular hunts in Richmond. The act was roughly to coincide with the landing of a large French invading force then gathering at Calais. The plot was foiled, and fourteen alleged conspirators were seized. The timely movement of forces from the Netherlands to England and the dispatch of the fleet to the Channel also frustrated the invasion plans. When the dual threat was revealed, the Whigs naturally aroused as much patriotic fervor as possible, “uniting” the nation against foreign intrigues and invasion. Baxter, William III, 336–37.
1639. Sir Paul Foley (1645[?]–1699) was Speaker of the House of Commons from 1695 to December 1698. He was known as an upright, impartial man, unspectacular, but respected. DNB.
1640. At least three of them, however, Sir John Friend, Sir William Perkins and Sir John Fenwick, were knights. Baxter, William III, 337, 343.
1641. Days after they heard the news of the assassination plot, the Commons and some Lords formed a “General Association for King William,” a patriotic vigilante group promising revenge against all “unfriendly” elements if William were killed. Baxter, William III, 337.
1642. This move was obviously designed to fill any power vacuum left by an assassination and to prevent a Jacobite coup.
1643. Richard Coote, Earl of Bellomont (1636–1701) came to North America as the governor general of Massachusetts, New York and New Hampshire and served as captain-general of the militias of Rhode Island, Connecticut and the Jerseys. The hope behind these multiple office holdings was that Bellomont would be able to coordinate the military activities of the northeast colonies and enforce the Navigation Acts more effectively. For his pains, he received almost nothing but trouble, especially from New York and Massachusetts. American National Biography, ed. John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (New York and Oxford, 1999).
1645. Samuel Cotton.
1646. See n. 1, above.
1647. Perhaps, but James’s son, the Duke of Berwick, was clearly involved; it would have been surprising if James and the French King had not known something of the scheme. Baxter, William III, 337.
1648. The Test Act, passed in 1673, barred anyone who did not subscribe to the rites and doctrines of the Church of England from public or military office. The Act was particularly aimed at the Catholic Duke of York, but it affected dissenting Protestants as well.
1649. See 20 August 1692.
1650. Sir Thomas Osborne, Earl of Danby (1631–1712) became Duke of Leeds in 1694. DNB.
1651. Benjamin Colman (1673–1747, H.C. 1692) preached briefly in Medford and planned to join in missionary efforts in Carolina. However, he emigrated to England instead, in 1692, eventually returning to Boston in 1699 to help establish the Brattle Street Church. Sibley includes an account of his capture at sea. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:120–37.
1652. Possibly William Whittingham (d. 1672), a merchant of Ipswich and Boston.
1653. Probably Captain Benjamin Gillam (c. 1663–1706), mariner of Boston.
1654. See n. 7 above.
1655. See n. 8 above.
1657. Isa. 33:17: “Thine eyes shall see the king in his beauty: they shall behold the land that is very far off.”
1658. Edward Tompson (1665–1705, H.C. 1684) was ordained in Marshfield on 14 October 1696. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 205.
1659. “God willing.”
1660. Either John (1658–1752) or Joseph (b. 1666) Sturtevant; both lived in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 720.
1661. Possibly Abigail Cotton, daughter of Rowland and Elizabeth, born on 9 July 1696. Laverne C. Cooley, Short Biography of the Rev. John Cotton & a Cotton Genealogy (New York, 1945), 34.
1662. Probably James Lewis (1664–1748) of Barnstable. Torrey, New England Marriages, 463.
1663. “Yarmouth” refers to John Cotton, Cotton’s son; Nathaniel Lathrop (1669–1700) lived in Barnstable, and Jonathan Russell (1655–1711, H.C. 1675) was the minister in Barnstable.
1664. Josiah Cotton.
1665. Theophilus Cotton.
1666. Not found.
1667. Weymouth’s minister, Samuel Torrey, evidently would not come to fill his pulpit on 19 August 19. See the next letter.
1668. Not found.
1669. The following is apparently a transcription.
1670. Prince’s note: “ye Newport man of war.” This probably refers to the beginning of the attack on Fort William Henry, which began on 5 August 1696, when the French attacked and won the English ship the Newport, commanded by Captain Paxton, in the Bay of Fundy. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 262; Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 350; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 110.
1671. “French General.”
1672. Following Chubb’s decision to kill the Native sachems who came to the fort to discuss prisoner exchange in February 1696, hostilities erupted again in King William’s War. Chubb surrendered the fort one day in early August 1696 during a siege by French soldiers and their Native allies. Mather and other contemporaries criticized Chubb for what they considered to be his cowardice in surrendering. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 350, 137; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 261–62; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 111.
1673. The transcription appears to end here. Prince’s note: “Pemaquid Fort surrender’d by Chub Aug. 5 or 6. 96.”
1674. Richard Coote, Earl of Bellomont (1636–1701) became the governor general of the provinces of Massachusetts, New Hampshire and New York and served as commander of the joint forces of those provinces as well as of Connecticut, Rhode Island and the Jerseys. See also 27 July 1696.
1675. Not found.
1676. Prince’s note: “Suppose in 1696, Aug,” but see 25 August 1696, n. 1, which fixes this letter’s chronology.
1677. A finback whale (Balaenoptera physalus) is the second largest whale and has a distinctive flat head and a throat marked by deep furrows.
1678. The Indian Congregational Church in Mashpee had Native preachers only from 1682–1729, after the death of Richard Bourne and before the arrival of Joseph Bourne (1701–1767, H.C. 1722). Weis, Colonial Clergy, 36.
1680. The fleet, consisting of three men-of-war and two armed merchant vessels, sailed in pursuit of Iberville’s victorious ships following the surrender of Fort William Henry. One of the captains, Eames, encountered a more vigorous French fleet than he expected and retreated. See 12 August 1693. Drake, Border Wars of New England, 112.
1681. Jonathan Russell, minister in Barnstable.
1682. The Tuesday installment was written on a second, smaller sheet and was enclosed in the Monday portion.
1683. William Stoughton.
1684. Edward Mould, son of Captain Samuel and Mary Mould (Moulds), was born on 8 October 1695, and died on 1 July 1696. Roger D. Joslyn, Vital Records of Charlestown, Massachusetts, (Boston, 1984), 168, 172.
1686. Prince’s note: “June. 24: 1696—3 men & yr wives kill’d by Indians at Wells.” On 24 June, Thomas Cole and his wife were killed by Natives as they were returning home to Wells, Maine, with neighbors following a visit to York, Maine. While Prince noted that “3 men & yr wives kill’d by Indians at Wells,” Mather implied that only Cole and his wife were “slain.” Drake suggests that Cole, his wife and two others were killed. Two days later, on 26 June, an assault on nearby Sagamore Creek and Sherburne’s Plains left fourteen settlers dead, four captured and the settlement in flames. Stackpole includes a list of the people killed and captured. Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 261; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 108–9; Stackpole, History of New Hampshire, 186–87.
1687. Mehitable and Joseph Warren’s newborn daughter, Priscilla, arrived on 19 June 1696. She survived this illness and was engaged to Lemuel Drew in 1751. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 23, 145.
1688. The published town records list the birth of Nathaniel Morton on 24 August 1695 instead of 1696, mistaking the year by one. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 31.
1689. See 23 and 24 August 1696.
1690. Not found. Probably Samuel Melvin/Melyen (c. 1675–1711, H.C. 1696). Melvin’s family was among the most important in New Netherland; his father moved to Boston in the 1680s. After graduation, Melvin first taught school in Hadley; he later ministered to the First Presbyterian Church in Elizabethtown, New Jersey. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4: 298–300.
1691. Probably yellow fever; epidemics of “bleeding fever” ravaged Barbados in the 1640s and the 1690s. Dunn, Sugar and Slaves, 303.
1692. Thomas Palmer (1665–1743) was the settled minister in Middleborough beginning in 1696. Although he never attended college, he was ordained in 1702. After his dismissal in 1708, he worked as a physician until his death. Cotton was alluding to Middleborough’s pending decision whether or not to hire Palmer as its minister. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 157.
1693. Isaac Howland (c. 1650–1724) was the youngest son of emigrant John Howland. He was an innkeeper and lived in Middleborough; he also served as a representative to the Plymouth Court several times before 1692. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:479.
1694. Both Sibley and Savage suggest that Samuel Melvin had a sister, Abigail, and a brother, who is unamed.
1695. Prince’s note: “Mr Wadsworth was ordained on Sept. 8. 1696.” Benjamin Wadsworth (1670–1737, H.C. 1690) was ordained in Boston’s first church on 8 September 1696. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 212.
1696. “God willing.”
1697. This “epistle” was written on a very small scrap of paper, folded and sealed, without address, apparently enclosed with the letter preceding.
1698. The captives were probably Jonathan Haynes and his five children, who were captured from Haverhill on 15 August 1696. See 30 October 1696 and 14 May 1698. George Wingate Chase, History of Haverhill (Pub. by the author, 1861), 184–85.
1699. Abraham Hedge lived in Sandwich and Yarmouth and was the son of William Hedge. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:400.
1700. Not found.
1701. Cotton was alluding to the split of the Plymouth church that occurred following a 19 August church meeting. A group of members, led by elder Isaac Cushman, wanted to establish a separate church in early 1696. Joseph Dunham and Samuel Sturtevant (1654–1736) were two of the departing members. Cotton was initially opposed to the action, but by September Cushman and Cotton reconciled, and Cushman became the first minister of the new church in Plympton. CSM, 22:176, 178–79.
1702. Cotton was going to ask Weymouth’s minister, Samuel Torrey, to preach for him on 19 August, when he planned to address the splinter congregation.
1703. Not found.
1704. “Old England.”
1705. Samuel Sturtevant escorted Ephraim Little (1676–1723, H.C. 1695), who was teaching school in Plymouth, to serve as a temporary minister to the splinter congregation in Plympton. See 22 August 1695.
1706. Likely John Cole (1660–1748), who was married to Susanna Grey (1668–1727) and lived in Plympton. Possibly John Grey (b. 1661) of Plymouth who was married to Joanna Morton, or John Grey, who married Susannah Clarke, of Harwich. Torrey, New England Marriages, 169, 320.
1707. John Dyer (b. 1672) married Hannah Morton in June 1694, and they lived in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 237.
1708. Probably Elizabeth Kennedy of Plymouth, who was going to see her husband, Alexander. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:10.
1709. Martha Cole (c. 1672–1718) was married to Nathaniel Howland (d. 1746) in March 1697 in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 395.
1710. Caleb Loring (1674–1732) married Lydia Grey (1678–1771) on 7 August 1696 in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 474.
1711. Oxenbridge Thacher (1681–1772, H.C. 1698) was the eldest son of Milton’s minister, Peter Thacher. He was a Harvard classmate of Josiah Cotton’s, but evidently also friends with Theophilus. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:417–19.
1712. William Presbury was born in Sandwich in 1664 to John Presbury (1640–1679), but no source lists his death date. Charles Banks, History of Martha’s Vineyard (Boston, 1911–25), 3:410–11.
1713. “Eames” refers to Captain Eames. See 12 August 1693.
1714. Elizabeth Atwood/Wood Nye, was the wife of Caleb Nye (1658–1704) and lived in Sandwich. Torrey, New England Marriages, 542.
1715. This postscript was written under the address.
1716. Prince’s note: “Suppose Sep. 30. 96.”
1717. Possibly Michael Ford (d. 1721) of Marshfield. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:183; Lysander Salmon Richards, History of Marshfield (Plymouth, 1901), 2:102–3.
1718. Edward Tompson (1665–1705, H.C. 1684) was ordained in Marshfield’s First Church on 14 October 1696, where he remained until he died. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:306–10; CSM, 22:179.
1719. Prince’s note: “Mr Edward Thompson ordain’d at Marshfield Oct. 14. 1696.”
1720. “God willing.”
1721. Although Ephraim Little was a schoolteacher in Plymouth at this time, he often filled in for other ministers in southeastern Massachusetts when they were away. In this case, he substituted for Deodat Lawson in Norwell after Lawson departed for England. Little’s text that day was “Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.” For Lawson’s extended and controversial absence, see 22 August and 9 October 1695. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:248–52.
1722. John Cushing (1627–1708) lived in Scituate and served as a representative from Plymouth Colony under both charters, among other positions. His son, Caleb (1673–1752, H.C. 1692), accepted the pulpit in Salisbury in 1698 and married Cotton’s widowed daughter, Elizabeth Cotton Alling, in 1689. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:489–90; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:137–39.
1723. Prince’s note: “suppose Oct. 5. 96.”
1724. Not found.
1725. Probably Nathaniel Churchill of Plymouth, son of Eliezur (d. 1716) and Mary Dotey Churchill (d. 1715).
1726. Prince’s note: “Oct. 14. 96 is [symbol for Wednesday].” See the letter of 30 September 1696.
1727. Nathaniel Thomas married Elizabeth Wilkes Condy Dolberry (d. 1713) on 3 November 1696. Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
1728. “Old England.”
1729. John Rickard (c. 1652–1726) of Plymouth.
1730. Francis Russell died in 1696 after serving as governor for two years. Russell, brother to the Earl of Oxford, brought his family to Barbados, and all died from fevers. Robert Schomburgk, The History of Barbados (1848; reprint, New York, 1971), 307.
1731. Francis Bond had served as a member of Russell’s cabinet and was the senior council member on the island when Russell died, so he became the acting governor until December 1697. Sir Ralph Gray (1661–1706) assumed the governorship in December 1697, arriving on the island in July 1698. Schomburgk, History of Barbados, 307–8.
1732. Prince’s note: “[symbol for Sunday]. Oct. 4.”
1733. Bathshua Harlow married Robert Seares on 21 October 1696 in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 659.
1734. Prince’s note: “Suppose Oct 10. 96.” See n. 8 below; the date should be 19 October 1696.
1735. Not found.
1736. John Appleton (1622–1699) of Ipswich served in many public offices in Massachusetts, including that of lieutenant colonel. His sister, Mary (d. 1727), was married to Nathaniel Thomas (1664–1738) of Marshfield/Ipswich. His uncle Samuel Appleton (1624–1696) had served as lieutenant colonel and had recently died, on 15 May 1696. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1: 60–62; Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
1737. Thomas Wade (1650–1696) of Ipswich died on 4 October 1696. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:379.
1738. Isaac Little (1646–1699) lived in Marshfield and was the brother of the minister Ephraim Little, a regular replacement for Cotton’s pulpit in Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:99.
1739. Ephraim Cole of Plymouth.
1740. John Saffin (c. 1634–1710) served in many government offices, including as a judge in the Superior Court in 1701. He moved to Bristol in 1690 to marry his third wife, the widow Rebecca Lee. Shortly afterward, he was appointed the first judge of probate in Bristol. Governor Dudley removed him in October 1696. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:3–4.
1741. John and Mary Morton’s fourth child, Ebenezer, was born on 19 October 1696. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 10–11.
1742. Prince’s note: “Suppose Oct. 30. or Nov. 2. 1696.”
1743. Prince’s note: “Mr Wm Brattle was ordained at Cambridg Nov. 25. 96.” William Brattle (1662–1717 HC 1680) was ordained in Cambridge on 25 November 1696. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 38–39.
1744. For the Haines captivity and escape story, see the letter of [14 May 1698].
1745. Major Benjamin Church led raids along the coast of Maine and into the Bay of Fundy, where French settlements offered plunder and opportunities for victory as he burned small French outposts. He hoped to attack the central Native settlement at Norridgewock, but his commander Colonel Hathorne would not allow it. Instead, Church raided a small French fort on the St. John River, which provided some stores but was no great victory. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 138; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 112–16.
1746. The English tried to retaliate against the French, who were successfully destroying all the English settlements on Newfoundland beginning in November 1696. Stoughton sent ships and troops led by Colonel Hawthorn and Major Church to Newfoundland to confront d’Iberville’s forces, but they failed. See the letter of 29/30 April 1697. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 350, 377.
1747. Judith Prince Barker married William Tubbs (1655–1718) after 1693 in Duxbury. Torrey, New England Marriages, 756.
1748. John Cotton (1658–1710, H.C. 1678) was ordained in Hampton, New Hampshire, on 19 November 1696. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 62.
1749. Cotton’s widowed daughter, Betty Cotton Alling (1663–1743), did not marry Caleb Cushing (1673–1752) until 14 March 1699. Evidently, Cotton thought the marriage was more imminent than Cushing did. Torrey, New England Marriages, 199; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:137.
1750. “By voice.”
1751. William Partridge, born in Portsmouth, succeeded John Usher as lieutenant governor of New Hampshire when he returned from London by February 1697 with a commission dated June 1696. Partridge had been treasurer of the colony and was a wealthy and transatlantically known shipwright and merchant. Although Usher had complained about the poor salary granted him as lieutenant governor, and had even appealed to Governor Allen in London to come to New Hampshire, he was surprised by Partridge’s seizure of power. Usher later claimed that Partridge’s assumption of the lieutenant governor’s position was illegal. Stackpole, History of New Hampshire, 1:196–202.
1752. “Old England.”
1754. “Thank God.”
1755. Prince’s note for the two funerals that Cotton describes: “suppose [symbol for Wednesday] Dec. 2, [symbol for Thursday] Dec. 3. 1696.” On 30 November 1696, William Maxwell, a sophomore at Harvard College, drowned with his freshman colleague, John Eyre (1682–1696), while skating on Fresh Pond. Maxwell was the son of a prominent merchant in Barbados, and Eyre was the only son of John Eyre, Esq., justice of the peace in Boston. The funerals were 3 and 4 December. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:480–81, 520–21.
1756. Elisha Cooke (1678–1737, H.C. 1697). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:349–56.
1757. Anthony Stoddard (1678–1760, H.C. 1697). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:381–83.
1758. Thomas Symmes (1678–1725, H.C. 1698). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:411–17.
1759. Josiah Cotton (1680–1756, H.C. 1698). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:398–402.
1760. Jeremiah Dummer (1681–1739, H.C. 1699). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:454–68.
1761. Jonathan Belcher (1682–1757, H.C. 1699). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:434–49.
1762. Ebenezer Pemberton (1672–1717, H.C. 1691) was librarian at Harvard College from 1693 to 1697, a tutor from 1697 to 1700, minister at Old South Church in Boston from 1699 to 1717, and a fellow from 1707 to 1717. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:107–13.
1763. Colonel Elisha Hutchinson (1641–1717) had three sons who may have carried John Eyre’s coffin: Thomas (b. 1675), Edward (b. 1678) and Elisha (b. 1681); none attended Harvard College. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:510.
1764. Thomas Dudley (b. 1680) was the second son of Paul and Mary Leverett Dudley. Both grandfathers were governors of Massachusetts Bay. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:76–77.
1765. Simon Bradstreet (c. 1680–c. 1715, H.C. 1700) was the son of Samuel Bradstreet, who practiced medicine in Jamaica. When his father died in 1682, Simon and his three siblings were raised in Boston by their grandfather, Governor Simon Bradstreet. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:514–15.
1766. John Winthrop (1681–1747, H.C. 1700) was the son of Waitstill Winthrop, grandson of Governor John Winthop. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:535–49.
1767. Richard Saltonstall, Rowland’s brother-in-law.
1768. Classmate John Barnard’s eyewitness description of the drowning is in Sibley’s account of John Eyre. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:520–21.
1769. Jonathan Russell, minister at Barnstable.
1770. From 1686 to 1689 and from 1692 to 1708, Harvard College’s traditional charter was “in abeyance” because Massachusetts Bay also lost its charter. The General Court of the Province of Massachusetts Bay granted a new charter of 1692 that established a corporation led by a president, treasurer and eight Fellows, but the king dissolved that charter in 1696. A new charter accepted in 1697 was similarly dissolved by the Crown in 1699. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:12–13.
1771. Increase Mather, Cotton Mather, Samuel Willard.
1772. Cotton suggests that he was with the young undergraduates in the days before their drowning.
1773. Ebenezer Allen (d. 1730) married Rebecca Russell on 14 April 1698 in Barnstable. Torrey, New England Marriages, 9.
1774. “Ah, remarkable!”
1775. John Oliver married Hannah Mather (1680–1700) on 28 January 1697 in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 544.
1776. The groom’s father, John Oliver (1644–1683[?]), was the son of Elizabeth Newgate Oliver Jackson (d. 1709) from her first marriage to John Oliver (d. 1646, H.C. 1645). Elizabeth was also mother of Sarah Jackson, who married Nehemiah Hobart (1648–1712, H.C. 1667) on 21 March 1677 in Cambridge. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:309–10; Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:102–6; Torrey, New England Marriages, 377; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 107.
1777. “Graduation catalogue.”
1778. Eleazer Rogers (1673–1739 or later) and Jabez Warren (d. 1701) were both seamen who lived in Plymouth. Warren drowned in 1701. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:426; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 136; Torrey, New England Marriages, 632.
1779. Elizabeth Mayo Treat had died on 4 December 1696 in Eastham. She was the wife of Samuel Treat (1648–1717, H.C. 1669), the minister at Eastham and Cotton’s colleague in Native ministry. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:304–14.
1780. Joanna is referring to the drowning of Harvard undergraduates William Maxwell and John Eyre. See the 8/9 December 1696 letter above.
1781. Zeph. 3:7: “I said, Surely thou wilt fear me, thou wilt receive instruction: so their dwelling should not be cut off, howsoever I punished them: but they rose early, and corrupted all their doings.”
1782. Josiah introduced the letter in his account, “My Father, as I hinted before, wrote a multitude of Letters, of which I have preservd but two that he wrote to me, the first when I was at Colledge.”
1783. Prov. 13:20: “He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.”
1784. 1 Pet. 5:8: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
1785. Prince’s note: “After Aug. 1696.” See n. 29 below; the date should be 29/30 April 1697.
1786. John Dunham (1649–1697) lived in Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:81.
1787. In Sandwich, on Cape Cod.
1788. Prince’s note: “Palmer.”
1789. Thomas Palmer, the new minister at Middleborough, preached on “And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just.”
1790. Condign: “worthily deserved, merited, fitting, appropriate, adequate.” OED, 3: 682.
1791. Torrey refers to a Thomas Bridgewater, who married Elizabeth Mackarta in 1696 and lived in Boston. New England Marriages, 97.
1792. Eleazer Cushman (1657–1723) married Elizabeth Coombs on 12 January 1687 in Plymouth. Elizabeth survived this illness and lived until at least 1723. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:491; Torrey, New England Marriages, 199.
1793. I chabod Wiswall (1637–1700), minister at Duxbury. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 233.
1794. According to Thomas Faunce’s town records, John Nelson died on 29 April 1697 at the age of fiftyfour. Nelson and Cotton were neighbors, and Cotton had sold land to Nelson a few years earlier. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135.
1795. By, “I doubt,” Cotton means, “I suspect.”
1796. Innkeeper Robert Ransom (c. 1630–1697) died on 14 December 1697; there is no evidence that the death was a suicide. Torrey, New England Marriages, 611.
1797. Robert Barker (1651–1729[?]) lived in Scituate. Elizabeth F. Barker, Barker Genealogy (New York, 1927.)
1798. “J Den” is probably John Denison. H. (Hugh) Robinson (1584[?]–1655), Scholae Wintoniensis phrases Latinae=The Latine phrases of Winchester-schoole : corrected and much augmented with poeticals added : and these four tracts, viz. I. Of words not to be used by elegant Latinists, II. The difference of many words like one another in sound or signification, III. Some words governing a subjunctive mood not mentioned in Lillies Grammar, IV. Concerning [chreia] and [gnom¯e] for entring children upon making of themes / by N. Robinson. . . ; published for the common use and benefit of the grammar-schools. 5th ed., with many additions. (London, 1667). The Mather Library at the American Antiquarian Society has a copy of this Latin language conversation and phrase book. See also 10 May 1697.
1799. Carla Gardina Pestana explores the way in which Congregationalists dismissed Quakers as “other”—less threat than object for ridicule—by the late seventeenth century in Quakers and Baptists in Colonial Massachusetts (New York, 1991), 149–58, 160–64.
1800. Letter not found. “Peleg W” is probably Peleg Wiswall (1684–1767, H.C. 1702), son of Duxbury’s minister Ichabod Wiswall. Theophilus and Peleg were evidently friends; Theophilus was already at Harvard, and Peleg would begin his studies in 1698. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 5:176–79.
1802. “As is the custom.”
1803. Samuel Harlow’s (1653–1734) eldest son was John, born on 19 December 1685. He survived this illness and died on 30 January 1771. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:356.
1804. Probably Thomas Doty (b. 1679) of Middleborough. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:62.
1805. Joseph Churchel lived in Plymouth. His servant, Johnson, was impressed for military service.
1806. Isaac (d. 1707) and Mercy Latham Harris’s eldest son was Arthur, born probably between 1668 and 1670 in Bridgewater. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:362.
1807. Abiel Shurtleif (1666–1732) lived in Plymouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 672.
1808. Elisha Cobb (b. 1678) was the son of John and Martha Nelson Cobb of Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:413.
1809. John Call (often spelled Cole) was born in England in 1635, settled in Charlestown by 1656, served as a deacon, and died on 9 April 1697. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:329–30; Torrey, New England Marriages, 131.
1810. See n. 11 above. This confirms the date of this letter as 20/30 April 1697.
1811. After destroying Fort William Henry in August 1696, the French fleet, led by Pierre Le Moyne d’Iberville, sailed for Newfoundland. From November 1696 to April 1697, Iberville’s forces leveled thirty-six English settlements and killed or imprisoned nearly 900 people, nearly eradicating the English presence in Newfoundland. Gallay, Colonial Wars of North America, 377, 350; Drake, Border Wars of New England, 114–16.
1812. Prince’s note: “Chubb surrender’d Pemaquid Fort in Aug 1696.” The defeated commander of Fort William Henry, Pascho Chubb, returned to Boston and was imprisoned until March 1697, awaiting court-martial. He was released as persona non grata and returned to Andover, where he and his wife were killed in a Native attack on 22 February 1698. Mather described their deaths as “Vengeance” by enraged Natives, although he refrained from criticizing Chubb’s decision to kill the peace delegation. See the letter of 4 March 1696. Colonial Wars of North America, 350, 137; Mather, Decennium Luctuosum, 261–262, 270; Rowland Cotton to John Cotton (1693–1757), 1 March 1698, Miscellaneous Bound Collection, MHS.
1813. Not found.
1814. The Latin should read, “caveat ne tertium tempus,” which translates as “let him be warned not to try it a third time.”
1815. Ephraim Little.
1816. John Tulley, An Almanac for the Year of our Lord, MDCXCVII (Boston, 1697) [Evans 815] or, less likely, Daniel Leeds, An Almanack for the Year of Christian Account, 1697 (New York, 1697) [Evans 785]. Evans, American Bibliography, 1:123, 126.
1817. “Old England.”
1818. Prince’s note: “Suppose 1697, May 3 or 10.”
1819. Not found.
1820. Ephraim Little.
1821. Luke retells Jesus’s parable of the wedding guest and becoming a disciple of Christ. Ironically, Samuel Sewall would later refer to this chapter of Luke when he heard of Cotton’s second adultery accusation and wrote about it in his diary: “Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned? It is neither fit for the land, nor yet for the dunghill; but men cast it out. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” Luke 14:34–35. See Sewall’s comments about Cotton as “Unsavoury Salt” of 30 September 1697 in Thomas, Diary of Samuel Sewall, 1:378.
1822. Rowland and Elizabeth’s daughter, Joanna.
1823. John Danforth (1660–1730, H.C. 1677) was the minister in Dorchester from 1682 until his death. He did preach the 1697 Election sermon, but it seems not to have been published. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:507–14.
1824. “Old England.”
1825. See 30 October 1696 and 29/30 April 1697.
1826. William Veasie was found guilty of speaking “factious and seditious words” against the king and his government in Massachusetts Bay, and of working on a day of Thanksgiving, 18 June 1696. The central witnesses to the case recounted his crimes: Veasie said “he did not know but there was a great deal of sin comitted in setting apart Days of Thanksgiving & Humiliation . . . that the King had granted Liberty of Conscience, and that King James was his Royal Prince, and that he did not know how this King came to the crown, and that the Crown belonged heires by succession. That it was an ill thing to kill a man privately, but he that went into France & fought him (intending King William as the Deponent understood) did like a man. . . .[when they departed] he returned to his plow.” He was sentenced to the pillory. Veasie seems to have joined with neighbors to conduct Episcopal services and was one of the founders of the Braintree Episcopal Church. In 1702, he was elected as a representative from Braintree; apparently, when his criminal past was recounted, he was ejected from the House. Massachusetts Archives, Suffolk County Files, Reel 21, vol. 38, #3443; Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:332.
1827. See 29/30 April 1697 for an earlier reference to “Winchesters.”
1828. Ruth Bonum Barrow lived in Plymouth; she had married Robert Barrow in 1666. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:127.
1829. Torrey lists an Amy Wyllys (1625–1698/9[?]) who married John Pynchon (c. 1625–1703) and lived in Springfield. New England Marriages, 608.
1830. Prince’s note: “Suppose 1697, May 19.” But the election news that Cotton retold indicates that he wrote this letter after 26 May.
1831. Not found.
1832. “Old England.”
1833. “By voice.”
1834. Probably the prominent merchant John Hubbard (d. 1710), who resided in Boston and Ipswich. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:484.
1835. Joshua Moody (1633–1697, H.C. 1653) died in Boston on 4 July 1697 while seeking medical advice for “complication of distempers.” Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:367–80.
1836. Prince’s note: “R Mr Jonno Moodey Died July 4. 97.”
1837. Nehemiah Walter (1663–1750, H.C. 1684) was the minister in Roxbury from 1688 until his death. He preached the Artillery Election sermon in 1697, but it seems never to have been published. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:294–301.
1838. Maj. Penn Townsend (1651–1727) served in the artillery company and as a representative to the General Court under both charters, also as Speaker. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:318–19.
1839. Capt. Nathaniel Byfield (1653–1733) served in the artillery company, as a representative under both charters, as Speaker of the House, and as a judge in multiple courts. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:325–26.
1840. Capt. Samuel Legg was elected as one of four representatives, or deputies, from Boston on 26 May 1697. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:148.
1841. Francis Foxcroft (c. 1657–1727) served in several official positions, including as a representative to the General Court. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:197.
1842. See 22 March 1695.
1843. Ephraim Little. Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:149.
1844. John Cushing (1627–1708) emigrated to New Plymouth as a child and served as a selectman, representative and assistant of Plymouth Colony, as well as a representative under the new Massachusetts Charter in 1692 and 1697. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:489–90; Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, 7:149.
1845. Prince’s note: “Sr Little took his 1st Degree in 95.”
1846. Not found.
1847. Probably Robert Cathcart (c. 1650–1719), an innkeeper who settled on Martha’s Vineyard in 1690. Banks, History of Martha’s Vineyard, 2:41–42.
1848. Not found.
1849. “Under the seal.”
1850. Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 180.
1851. Arthur Lord, “Rev. John Cotton of Plymouth,” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Transactions 26 (1924–1926): 79–81.
1852. Diary of Cotton Mather, 1681–1708, ed. Worthington Chauncey Ford, Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 7th ser., 8 (Boston, 1912), 277.
1853. From William Brattle, 19 October 1697.
1854. [To Rowland Cotton, 30 October 1697].
1855. [To Rowland Cotton, 30 October 1697].
1856. To Rowland Cotton, 18 February 1698; To Rowland Cotton, [17 June 1698]; To Rowland Cotton, 29 June 1698.
1857. To Rowland Cotton, [14 May 1698]; To Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 6 and 7 July 1698; To Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 8 July 1698.
1858. To Rowland Cotton, [2 July 1698].
1859. To Rowland Cotton, [2 February 1698]; To Rowland Cotton, 18 February 1698.
1860. To Rowland Cotton, [May 1698].
1861. To Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 8 July 1698.
1862. These two slips of paper were apparently enclosures in a June 1697 letter that is now lost.
1863. Not found.
1864. On 9 June 1697, John Young was killed, his son was wounded and Luke Wells was taken captive during a foiled attack on Exeter, New Hampshire (Hampton). Charles Bell, History of the Town of Exeter, New Hampshire (Exeter, 1888), 220.
1865. Not found.
1866. Here began Cotton’s attempts to settle college debts for Theophilus (H.C. 1701) and Josiah (H.C. 1698). Brattle’s willingness to help had limits: “I dare not encourage yr dependance upon me.” Many of the remaining letters in this collection reflect Cotton’s fears that he would not be able to pay for Josiah and Theophilus to finish their studies, given his own difficulties.
1867. Ebenezer Pemberton, tutor at Harvard.
1868. Date according to Prince.
1869. Not found.
1870. Not found.
1871. William Brattle married Elizabeth Hayman (1677–1715) on 3 November 1697 in Boston. Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, Md., 1865), 94.
1872. George Curwin (1683–1717, H.C. 1701) was first in his class from his entrance until his graduation. Cotton’s other placements are inaccurate. Thomas Weld (1684–1704, H.C. 1701) was placed tenth (out of nineteen) when he arrived and graduated eighth. Samuel Wiswall (1679–1746, H.C. 1701) began college ranked sixteenth, fell to eighteenth and graduated in sixteenth place. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 5:26, 124–25, 126–29.
1874. Cotton Mather.
1875. Increase Mather.
1876. Eel River is in Plymouth.
1877. Mattakeesitt is the area near the Duxbury/Pembroke boundary in Massachusetts.
1878. “God willing.”
1879. Probably Thomas Howland (d. 1739), the son of Arthur and Elizabeth Prince Howland of Plymouth. James Savage, A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, 4 vols. (1860–62; facsimile reprint, Baltimore, Md., 1990), 2:479.
1880. Ephraim Little.
1881. Increase Mather.
1882. Cotton Mather, Pietas in Patriam the life of His Excellency Sir William Phips, late Captain General and Governour in Chief of the Province of Massachusetts Bay . . . by one intimately acquainted with him, (London, 1697), Early English Books, 8:6379 [Wing M1138].
1883. Prince ‘s note: “Dated Apr. 27. 1697”
1884. Samuel Treat (1648–1717, H.C. 1669), minister at Eastham, and Experience Mayhew (1673–1758, H.C. 1720), minister at Martha’s Vineyard. Frederick Lewis Weis, The Colonial Clergy and the Colonial Churches of New England (Baltimore, Md., 1936), 208, 138.
1885. Ps. 126: 5: “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.”
1886. Capt. David Turrell’s wife, Mary Colbron Barrel Turrell, died on 23 January 1698. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:343–44; Torrey, New England Marriages, 760; Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths, 1630–1699, ed. William Appleton (Baltimore, Md., 1978), 1:238.
1887. John Barrel (b. 1657) married Isabella Legg (1672–1698) on 14 September 1693, and she died on 22 January 1698. Torrey, New England Marriages, 45; Appleton, Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages, and Deaths, 1:238.
1888. Cotton seems to have been implying that some relation of George Monk’s died. Mary, the daughter of Christopher and Mary Monk, was born on 26 March 1694 and died on 25 October 1697, but George Monk was not Christopher’s father, at least according to Savage. Tavern keeper George Monk of Boston’s Blue Anchor tavern himself died later this year, on 7 September 1698. Monk was one of Boston’s most favored tavern keepers, and his establishment had one room that often hosted sessions of the General Court and the Superior Court. Cotton may simply have been mistaken. David Conroy, In Public Houses: Drink & the Revolution of Authority in Colonial Massachusetts (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1995), 14, 18; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:224; Acts and Resolves of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, vol. 7, 564; Appleton, Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages, and Deaths, 215, 227, 238.
1889. Jonathan Elliston died on 6 November 1697, but Cotton stated that the deceased was his grandchild through his daughter, who would not have been named Elliston; the records do not list another death that would fit Cotton’s information, which may have been mistaken. Appleton, Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages, and Deaths, 238.
1890. Increase Mather.
1891. In June 1698, Thomas Ramsden of Duxburough was presented for “neglecting to give evidence to the Grand Jury when summoned” and charged a fine. There may have been a connection to Nan Ramsden’s case; however, court records for this period have been lost. David T. Konig, Plymouth Court Records (Wilmington, Del., 1978–1981), 1:224.
1892. Not found.
1893. “Weddings are to be celebrated.”
1894. Cotton’s son Josiah became a schoolmaster in Marblehead in the fall of 1698; perhaps he was teaching there or elsewhere on a temporary basis. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:399.
1895. See 18 February 1698.
1896. Not found.
1898. Richard and Bathshua Seers married in Plymouth in 1696 and remained there to raise their five children. Vital Records of Plymouth, Mass To 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 17.
1899. Savage refers to John Wood, who was a Deacon in Marlborough; Torrey lists a John Woods (1641–1716), who married in Marlborough. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:627; Torrey, New England Marriages, 834.
1900. Cotton and Samuel Mather (1674–1733, H.C. 1690) were too ill to hear their father, Increase Mather, preach.
1901. See 1 February 1698. John Wadsworth was sworn in as a justice during the General Sessions in August 1692. Plymouth Court Records, 1686–1859, 1:219.
1902. No evidence of Nan Ramsden’s life remains; for Cotton’s impression of the case, see his letter of 1 February 1698.
1903. Prince’s note: “Suppose 1697/8 March. 6.”
1904. According to Thomas Faunce’s town records, Joshua Prat died on 16 February 1698, so this letter must have been written on 18 February 1698, not March 6, as Thomas Prince suggested. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135.
1905. John Churchill (d. 1723) and Rebecca Delano Churchill (d. 1709) had five children, aged eleven months to ten years. Eleazer Churchill (1652–1716) and Mary Bryant Churchill (1654–1715) had eleven children; the oldest was twenty-two. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 6, 8; Torrey, New England Marriages, 153; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:386–87.
1906. Probably the eldest son of Andrew Ward (1647–1691) and Trial Miegs Ward, born in 1669 in Killingworth, Connecticut. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:406–7.
1907. Robert and Sarah Bartlett’s fourth child, a son, was born on 16 February 1698. The unnamed baby died on 20 February 1698. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 13.
1908. Joseph and Sarah Churchill’s eldest child, John, was born on 3 July 1678.
1909. William Harlow (1657–1712) and Lydia Cushman Harlow (1659–1717[?]) probably called Joanna to assist in the birth of their seventh child, Mary, or their eighth, Isaac. Ben Warren (b. 1670) and Hannah Morton Warren (1677–1715) had their first child, Benjamin, on 15 March 1698; they evidently needed prenatal advice from Joanna. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 8, 18; Torrey, New England Marriages, 344; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:357.
1910. William Ring and Hannah Shirmon Ring had only one living child in 1698; their second child, Hannah, was born on 26 May 1697. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 17, 86.
1911. Mercy Wood died on 4 March 1698. “Cupping” was a common procedure to draw out infection: “The operation of drawing blood by scarifying the skin and applying a ‘cup’ or cupping-glass the air in which is rarefied by heat or otherwise.” Dry-cupping was designed to raise the infection without scarring the patient. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 135; Oxford English Dictionary, 2d ed. (Oxford, 1989) (hereafter OED), 4:134.
1912. Not found.
1913. Prince’s note: “Sr W Phipps Life Dedicated Apr. 25. 97.”
1914. Thomas Little (1674–1712, H.C. 1695) was a physician and merchant who lived in Marshfield until 1699, when he settled in Plymouth. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:253.
1915. Cabbage-net: “a small net to boil cabbage in.” OED, 2:745.
1916. Woosted: “a wollen fabric or stuff made from well-twisted yarn spun of long-staple wool combed to lay the fibres parallel.” OED, 20:581.
1917. Ps. 42: 5: “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.”
1918. Ps. 42: 11: “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.”
1919. Ps. 43: 5: “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.”
1920. Probably Daniel Davis (b. 1673) of Concord, Massachusetts, who married Mary Hubbard in 1699. Torrey, New England Marriages, 205; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:21.
1921. Elizabeth Doty Morse (b. 1676) was the daughter of Plymouth’s John (1640–1701) and Elizabeth Cooke Doty (1649–1692); she married Joshua Morse in Plymouth in December 1698. Elizabeth Doty Oaksman was the daughter of Plymouth’s Edward (c. 1643–1690) and Sarah Faunce Doty; in 1698, she had already married Tobias Oaksman and lived in Marshfield. Which Betty Davis went on the visit is unclear. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 4–5; Torrey, New England Marriages, 227, 521, 542.
1922. See 18 February 1698.
1923. Probably a variation of “meash” or “masshe”—“to become enmeshed or entangled” or “to entangle, involve inextricably.” OED, 19:647.
1924. “Woolen fabric.” OED, 16:984.
1925. Samuel Torrey (1632–1707), minister in Weymouth. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 206.
1926. One and a third lines crossed out.
1927. Two words crossed out.
1928. Prince’s note: “Suppose 1698. May.” Information in n. 3 below suggests that this letter was written in early May.
1929. Joseph Lord (c. 1672–1748, H.C. 1691) was an early settled minister in the Carolina colony, beginning in December 1695. After establishing the settlement on Ashley River, called Dorchester after Lord’s home congregation, Lord returned to Boston to encourage emigration, arriving on 16 April 1698. Clearly, Lord thought that Cotton would be willing to consider such a move. He also married Abigail Hinckley, Gov. Thomas Hinckley’s daughter, on 2 June 1698 in Barnstable. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:101–6.
1930. Charles Morton (1627–1698), minister in Charlestown from 1686 to 1698, died on 11 April 1698. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 146.
1931. Samuel Willard (1640–1707, H.C. 1659), minister at Boston’s Old South church. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 227–228.
1932. See [30 October 1697].
1933. Prince’s note: “1698 suppose may.14.”
1934. Captain John Brown (b. 1672) married Sarah Burroughs on 21 April 1698. Brown’s father, William Brown of Salem (d. 1716), married Rebecca Bayley on 26 April 1694, after his first wife, John’s mother, Hannah Corwin Brown (1646–1692), died. William Brown served in many government offices, including as a member of Edmund Andros’s council. Sarah Burroughs was the only child of Francis Burroughs, a merchant in Boston. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:278, 310; Torrey, New England Marriages, 107, 109.
1935. Jonathan Haynes (c. 1646–1698) was captured with four of his children—Mary (b. 1677), Thomas (b. 1680), Joseph (b. 1689) and Jonathan (b. 1684)—on 15 August 1696. (See the above letter of 30 October 1696.) The raiding party split up and Jonathan Sr. and Thomas were taken to Maine, from whence they escaped, while the other three children were taken north and sold to the French. Mary was later “redeemed,” but Jonathan and Joseph settled in Canada. The event to which Cotton refers in this letter occurred on 22 February 1698, when the Natives who burned Andover returned home by way of Haverhill. Jonathan and Thomas Haynes were again attacked; Jonathan was killed, probably because he was too aged to travel, and Thomas was captured. He again escaped. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:389–90; George Wingate Chase, The History of Haverhill (Haverhill, Mass., 1861), 184–85, 201–3.
1936. Cotton Mather described the event: “ . . . on May 9, 1698, the Indians Murdered an old man, at Spruce-Creek, and carried away Three Sons of that old man, and wounded a man at York.” Cotton Mather, Decennium Luctuosum (Boston, 1699) in Narratives of the Indian Wars, 1675–1699, ed. Charles Lincoln (New York, 1913), 270.
1937. Christopher Toppan (1671–1747, H.C. 1691) did not marry Joseph Gerrish’s (1650–1720, H.C. 1669) daughter, Elizabeth; she married Joseph Green (1675–1715, H.C. 1695) in March 1699. Instead, Toppan married Sarah Angier on 13 December 1698. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:299–304; 4:113–17, 228–33.
1938. Not found.
1939. Three lines crossed out.
1940. Samuel Hinckes (d.[?] 1759, H.C. 1701) joined Theophilus’s class during the final quarter of the freshman year. Ephraim Woodbridge (1680–1725, H.C. 1701) joined the class a year late, and Samuel Woodbridge (1683–1746, H.C. 1701) joined the sophomore class. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 5:69–73, 129–34.
1941. Cotton Mather.
1942. Boston mariner Richard Hubbard (d. 1699) married Dr. John Clark’s daughter, Elizabeth, on 9 November 1697. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:485; Torrey, New England Marriages, 397.
1943. “Old England.”
1944. Probably Henry Dering (1639–1701), a Boston shopkeeper. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:41.
1945. Caleb Cushing.
1946. Prince’s note: “[symbol for Wednesday] may 25. 98.” Nicholas Noyes (1647–1717, HC 1667) preached the Election Sermon on 25 May 1698, published as New England’s Duty and Interest (Boston, 1698) [Evans 850].
1947. Samuel Felloes died on 6 March 1698. Vital Records of Salisbury, Massachusetts, (Topsfield, Mass., 1915), 557.
1948. Sarah Smith[?] Eastman (1621–1698), the widow of Roger Eastman (1610–1694) of Salisbury, died on 11 March 1698 in Salisbury. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:93; Torrey, New England Marriages, 240.
1949. Prince’s note: “Mr Grindal Rawson & Mr Samuel Danforth spent ye Time in visiting ye Indians, in 1698, a May. 30. to June 24. Suppose in 1698, june 17.”
1950. Not found.
1951. Not found.
1952. de/”about”—The Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in New England appointed Grindal Rawson (1659–1715, H.C. 1678) and Samuel Danforth (1666–1727, H.C. 1683) to visit Native settlements from 30 May to 24 June 1698. Their report is printed in Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 1st ser., 10 (Boston, 1809), 129. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:164, 244.
1953. According to a 1693 document, there were two men named William Nummuck, one designated “jr.” and associated with the Native church in Sandwich. Jeremy Bangs, Indian Deeds: Land Transactions in Plymouth Colony, 1620–1691 (Boston, 2002), 560–62.
1954. Wanoo and Occanootus were neighbors at Manomet and appear frequently in Plymouth town and colony records. They both served on the Native jury for the John Sassamon murder trial in 1675. Clearly, they were both firm supporters of missionary work among the Natives. Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed., Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England (Boston, 1855–61), 5:168.
1955. “(Back he ran to Barnes & took him).”
1956. Samuel Little (1655–1707) lived in Marshfield. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:99.
1957. “With three roots. What your brother said to the new son: early on Saturday at the eighth hour: your relative returns with a horse and sends back the greatest thanks.”
1958. Prince’s note: “1698. suppose June. 22 or 29.” See the letter of 2 July 1698 to confirm the later date for this letter.
1959. Not found.
1960. Elizabeth Usher Jeffries (1669–1698), wife of Boston merchant David Jeffries (1688–1742), died on 27 June 1698. She was the only child of John Usher by his first wife. Usher served in many government offices, including that of lieutenant governor of New Hampshire. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:539; 4:363.
1961. Ephraim Little.
1962. Robert Breck (1682–1731, H.C. 1700), David Deming (1681–1746, H.C. 1700) and John Holman (1679–1759, H.C. 1700) were classmates who seem to have participated in an event that Sibley’s calls a “riot.” John Veazie (1681–1701, H.C. 1700) and Daniel Dodge (1677–1720, H.C. 1700) also joined in the “class riot.” Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:515–18, 518–19, 523–26, 532, 519–20.
1963. Josiah Cotton.
1964. Thomas Symmes, Josiah Cotton, Samuel Mather, Joseph Willard, Dudley Bradstreet, Peter Cutler, John Fox, Nathaniel Hubbard, Samuel Wolcott, Henry Swan, John White, Josiah Torry, Oxenbridge Thacher and Richard Billings comprised the Class of 1698. The master’s students in 1698 were Walter Price, Richard Saltonstall, Nathaniel Saltonstall, John Hubbard, Simon Willard, Abijah Savage, Oliver Noyse, Thomas Blowers, Ephraim Little, John Perkins, Jedidiah Andrews, John Robinson, Joseph Green, Joseph Morse, all classmates of Harvard 1695. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:393, 218–19.
1965. Walter Price (1676–1731, H.C. 1695) was traveling in Europe during the 1698 commencement but defended his master’s question—on the suitability of monarchy—and was granted the degree, listed first in his class. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:270–71.
1966. “old England”
1967. Prince’s note: “was not ordained till Oct. 6. 98.” Simon Bradstreet (1671–1741, H.C. 1693) was ordained in Charlestown on 26 October 1698 after a “fierce dispute” led by Increase Mather, who opposed his ministry. Although Bradstreet began preaching in Charlestown in 1697, he was reticent to accept a settled position amidst the congregation’s turmoil. This probably explains why his ordination took place later than Cotton suggested in this letter. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:154–56.
1968. Increase Mather.
1970. Grindal Rawson preached on Eccles. 12:7: “Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.”
1971. John Wanoo (Wauno) was a Christian Indian in Plymouth, who ministered to converted Natives and was empowered by William Bradford “to decide small differences among them.” “Account of an Indian Visitation, A.D. 1698,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 1st ser., 10 (Boston, 1809), 134.
1972. Thomas Tupper.
1973. Samuel Danforth.
1974. Benjamin Wadsworth.
1975. Prince’s note: “Suppose July. 2. 1698. (no 2.).”
1976. See the letter of 2 July 1698.
1977. David Loring (b. 1671) was the son of Thomas and Hannah Jacob Loring of Hull and lived in Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:117–19.
1978. See the letter of 29 June 1698.
1979. “About Yarmouth.”
1981. Joseph Rider; see the letter of 2 July 1698.
1982. Three words crossed out.
1983. Samuel Torrey.
1984. Caleb Loring (1674–1732) lived in Plymouth and was David Loring’s younger brother. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:117; Torrey, New England Marriages, 474.
1985. David Loring; see above note.
1986. Peter Jacobs (b. 1668) lived in Hingham. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:534.
1987. Theophilus Cushing (1657–1718) lived in Hingham. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:489, 491; Torrey, New England Marriages, 199.
1988. Probably Jonathan Russell.
1989. Prince’s note: “1698. of June. 28. a Fire at Salem yt burnt Several Houses.” See 2 July 1698.
1990. Prince’s note: “1698 Suppose July. 2. Fire at Salem was on June. 28. 1698.”
1991. Joseph Waterman (1643–1712) or perhaps his son, Joseph (b. 1677), both living in Marshfield. Robert Barrow, the husband of first Ruth Bonum and then Lydia Dunham, lived in Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:432, 1:127; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 10.
1992. Abiel Shurtleif (1666–1732) was the son of William and Elizabeth Lettice Shertliff and lived in Plymouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:92; Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 18.
1993. Probably Joseph Rider (c. 1644–1718), who lived in Yarmouth, or his son, Joseph, born on 22 December 1676, also from Yarmouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3: 540; Torrey, New England Marriages, 625.
1994. Perhaps Margaret Winslow Miller, wife of John Miller (1632–1711) of Yarmouth, son of Yarmouth’s minister, John Miller (1604–1663). Torrey, New England Marriages, 509; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:209.
1995. Ichabod Wiswall (1637–1700), minister at Duxbury (1676–1700.) Samuel Torrey (1632–1707), minister at Weymouth, and Increase Mather (1639–1723, H.C. 1656), minister at Second Church, Boston, did not want Cotton preaching in Massachusetts Bay. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 233, 206, 136.
1996. Peleg Wiswall (1684–1767, H.C. 1702) was the son of Ichabod and Priscilla Pabodie Wiswall of Duxbury. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 5:176–79.
1997. Salem’s “Great Fire of 1698” occurred after dark on 28 June. The fire began in Timothy Lindall’s warehouse on Essex Street and destroyed the homes of Samuel Prince, William Browne, John Pilgrim and William Hirst. In order to stop the spread of the fire, the Hathorne House on the corner of Essex and Liberty streets was blown up. In all, £5000 worth of property was lost, more than half of it from merchant William Browne’s warehouse. Sidney Perley, History of Salem, Massachusetts (Salem, 1926), 3:347–50; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2: 240–41.
1998. Not found. Cotton’s son John married Sarah Hubbard, daughter of Richard and Sarah Bradstreet Hubbard of Ipswich, during his time in Exeter, New Hampshire. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:213–14.
1999. Prov. 16: 3: “Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.”
2000. Michael Wigglesworth (1631–1705, H.C. 1651) was plagued by ill health throughout his ministerial career in Malden, and he often had assistance from other ministers. The church voted in March 1698 to pay for some help for Wigglesworth, but Cotton was not chosen to assist or replace him. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 1:259–86.
2001. Grindal Rawson.
2002. Increase Mather.
2003. Samuel Torrey.
2004. Ichabod Wiswall.
2005. Jonathan Russell.
2006. John Smith (1614–171[?]), former minister at Sandwich, who still resided in the town and occasionally assisted Rowland Cotton. See 25 September 1688.
2007. Increase Mather.
2008. Cotton believed that this second adultery accusation was political—that he was being punished for supporting Increase Mather’s charter, which dissolved Plymouth Colony, giving Massachusetts Bay control over southeastern Massachusetts. During the charter negotiations, however, Cotton praised Mather’s efforts; for example, see the letter of 10 and 21 September 1688.
2009. “Old England.”
2010. Increase Mather.
2011. Possibly Samuel Sprague (b. 1640), who served in many local government positions in Plymouth Colony. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:156.
2012. Possibly Nathaniel Stone (1667–1755, H.C. 1690), who returned to Massachusetts in the summer of 1698, began preaching in Harwich and married Governor Hinckley’s daughter Reliance on 15 December 1698. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:79–82.
2013. Probably the protracted case involving John Dexter, a miller from Sandwich. Dexter was being sued by Capt. Thomas Tupper, Thomas Tobey, Zechariah Jenkins and Israel Gannet of Sandwich because he trespassed on a neck of land called Shawnee Neck (Scituate), which was given to the inhabitants of Sandwich in 1639 for common cattle grazing. In 1695, Dexter plowed the land, planted corn & put up a gate, trying to claim ownership. This complicated land dispute took more than three years to settle. See Suffolk County Files, Reel 22, vol. 39, #3525, Massachusetts State Archives.
2014. See the letter of 6 and 7 July 1698.
2015. James Warren (1665–1715) was married to Sarah Doty (b. 1666) and lived in Plymouth. Van Antwerp, Vital Records of Plymouth, 9; Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:424.
2016. Cotton was concerned about the 6 and 7 July 1698 letter because he wrote at length about how his Plymouth neighbors reacted to Mather’s charter, which included daming Mather to hell and initiating a virtual boycott of Mather’s publications, among other things.
2017. Prince’s note: “I was Then at the House, & Door & saw Him. T. Prince.” Plymouth colony’s last Governor, Thomas Hinckley (1619–1705).
2018. James Whippo, first married Gov. Hinckley’s daughter Experience and then to Abigail Hammon, who lived in Barnstable. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:507.
2019. There are two likely choices: John Hawes (d. 1701), who lived in Barnstable and Yarmouth, and Joseph Hawes (1673–1752), who lived in Yarmouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:380; Torrey, New England Marriages, 354.
2020. Peter Thacher (1665–1736) was married to Thankful Sturgis and lived in Yarmouth. Peter was the eldest son of John and Rebecca Winslow Thacher of Yarmouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 733.
2021. Josiah Thacher (1667–1702) was married to Mary Hedge and lived in Yarmouth. Josiah was the younger brother of Peter Thacher, mentioned above. Torrey, New England Marriages, 733.
2022. Probably Nathaniel Bassett (c.1628–1711), who lived in Yarmouth at least since 1672.
2023. Joanna’s decision to live away from Cotton had clearly caused some rumors, which evidently worried Cotton.
2024. In Thomas Prince’s hand.
2025. Probably John Miller (1632–1711), the son of John Miller (1604–1663), Yarmouth’s minister (1647–1662). Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 3:209; Torrey, New England Marriages, 509; Weis, Colonial Clergy, 141.
2026. Beached whales were valuable property, and courts often decided ownership. Plymouth Colony stipulated which portion of each beached whale should go to the colony treasurer, finder, cutter, and property owner. In 1654 in Weymouth, the General Court of Massachusetts Bay divided the animals in three, granting equal thirds to the “countrje,” the “toune of Weimouth,” and “the finders.” A Barnstable case went through several appeals. In March 1694, the Superior Court of Judicature in Plymouth ruled against three men, Samuel Lewis, William Weeks and Thomas Boweman of Falmouth, who claimed that a whale beached in Falmouth was wrongfully taken from them by Gov. William Phips. The case was reviewed in Bristol in September 1694, and their evidence was rejected. But, in December 1695, they were granted a new hearing of the case before the Supreme Court of Judicature in Plymouth. Evidently, they won. Plymouth Colony Records, 11:61, 66, 114, 132–34, 136, 207–8; Records of the Governor and Company of Massachusetts Bay, ed. Nathaniel Shurtleff, vol. 4, part 1 (1650–1660) (Boston, 1854), 191; Acts and Resolves, vol. 6, Private Acts, 1692–1780, 13.
2027. Hampton’s minister, John Cotton (1658–1710, H.C. 1678), was Seaborn and Dorothy Bradstreet Cotton’s son, and Cotton’s first cousin. Weis, Colonial Clergy, 62.
2028. William Brattle.
2029. To Rowland Cotton, [16 July 1698].
2030. To Rowland Cotton, [16 July 1698].
2031. From Rowland Cotton, 25 April 1699.
2032. From Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 13 July 1699; To Rowland Cotton, [8 August 1699].
2033. Cotton Mather to Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 23 October 1699.
2034. From Rowland Cotton, 25 April 1699.
2035. To Josiah Cotton, 1 August 1699.
2036. Joseph Lord to Thomas Hinckley, 21 February 1699, “The Hinckley Papers,” Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, 4th ser., 5 (Boston, 1861), 304–5.
2037. Josiah’s transcript is included below as “Diary entries by John Cotton, 11 December 1698–14 September 1699.”
2038. To Rowland Cotton, [8 August 1699].
2039. Prince’s note: “He was at yarmouth July 9 & 10 & not got to Sandwich ye 11 & this mt be wrote ye [symbol for monday] after. 1698 Suppose July. 16.”
2040. Robert Fenwick (d. 1725[?]) was born in England and began his working life as one of the “Red Sea Men,” privateers who raided merchant vessels in the Indian Ocean. Forced to remain in South Carolina on bond, he eventually acquired land, largely by importing six slaves to settle in the province. At its largest, his property included more than 3,000 acres. He also ran a sawmill near Dorchester, Cotton’s settlement. His public offices eventually included those of tax assessor, representative to the Assembly, militia captain, and justice of the peace. Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, ed. Walter B. Edgar (Columbia, S.C., 1977), 2:246–47.
2041. Early colonial South Carolina seemed plagued by poorly chosen and corrupt proprietary governors, and Joseph Blake (d. 1700) was one of the worst, “one of the most notorious customs racketeers in colonial America.” He served as governor in 1694–95 and from 1696 to 1700. Walter Edgar, South Carolina: A History (Columbia, S.C., 1998), 90, 93.
2042. Prince’s note: “i.e. in S. Carolina.”
2043. James Allen.
2044. Samuel Willard.
2045. “Me in a certain measure.”
2046. Samuel Torrey.
2047. James Keith, minister of Bridgewater.
2049. Ichabod Wiswall.
2050. Joseph Lord invited Cotton to join his missionary efforts in the new Carolina colony, and Cotton accepted. See the above letter of [May 1698]. Another minister, Hugh Adams (1676–1748, H.C. 1697), joined Lord and Cotton in Carolina. Adams married in Carolina, not returning to New England until 1706. John Langdon Sibley, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University, In Cambridge, Massachusetts (Boston, 1873–) (hereafter Sibley’s Harvard Graduates), 4:103, 321–36.
2051. Abigail Hinckley Lord, Governor Thomas Hinckley’s daughter, was undoubtedly well known to Joanna Rosseter Cotton, and she seems to have been eager for Joanna to move to Carolina also.
2052. Josiah Cotton.
2053. Ichabod Wiswall.
2054. Jonathan Russell.
2055. Manuscript copy in Prince’s hand. The Massachusetts Historical Society has assigned 30 July to Thomas Prince’s “latr end of July 1698.”
2056. Rowland Cotton.
2057. Either Adam Winthrop (1647–1700, H.C. 1668) or his son, Adam (1676–1743, H.C. 1694). Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 2:247–49, 4:209–14.
2058. Not found.
2059. “For Mr Rowland Cotton, now at Boston” in Prince’s hand at top of page.
2060. Not found.
2061. Rowland’s wife, Elizabeth Saltonstall Cotton.
2062. Eleazer Churchel.
2063. Eleazer Rogers (1673–1739+) lived in Plymouth. Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700 (Baltimore, Md., 1865), 632; Vital Records of Plymouth, Mass To 1850, comp. Lee D. Van Antwerp, ed. Ruth Wilder Sherman (Camden, Me., 1993), 31.
2064. Josiah Cotton.
2065. Not found.
2066. “For Mr Rowland Cotton now at Boston.” in Prince’s hand at top of page.
2067. Not found.
2068. Not found. Perhaps letters from Joseph Lord.
2069. Andrew Rankin married Grace Newcomb Butler (b. 1664) in April 1692 in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 611.
2070. Tobias Oaksman (1664–1750) was married to Elizabeth Doty (1673–1745), and they lived in Marshfield. Torrey, New England Marriages, 542.
2071. Robert Fenwick; see 16 July 1698.
2072. Jonathan Russell.
2073. Probably Increase Mather.
2074. Probably copies of Noyes’s recent election sermon, printed as New England’s Duty and Interest (Boston, 1698) [Evans 850].
2075. Two lines crossed out.
2076. References to “wormwood and gall” appear in several places in the bible. For example, in Jer. 9:15: “Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink.” In each example, wormwood and gall mark a people cast out of God’s favor. See also Jer. 23:15; Lam. 3:15, 19; Deut. 29:18.
2077. Probably another reference to Rowland’s continuing troubles with Thomas Tupper. See 13 September 1694 and 12 February 1695.
2078. Matt. 1:21: “And he shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.”
2079. Ps. 137:5–6: “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.”
2080. Matt. 15:25: “Then she came and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.”
2081. Robert Fenwick; see 16 July 1698.
2082. 1 Cor. 11:28: “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.”
2083. Not found.
2084. Neither letter was found.
2085. Ps. 74:28: “But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works.”
2086. 1 Cor. 11:28: See note 7 above.
2087. Ps. 85:6: “Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?”
2088. 1 Cor. 11:28: See note 7 above.
2089. Ps. 36:8: “They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures.”
2090. James 4:14: “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”
2091. Col. 3:2: “Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”
2092. None of the others have been found.
2093. Not found. Robert Harper lived in Sandwich with his wife, Deborah Perry Harper. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 2:358; Vital Records of Sandwich, Massachusetts to 1885, ed. Caroline Kardell and Russell Lovell (Boston, 1996), 1:22.
2094. Not found.
2095. Possibly Nathaniel Bassett (1628–1711) and his wife, Mary, from Yarmouth. Torrey, New England Marriages, 50.
2096. John and Joanna’s widowed daughter, Elizabeth Cotton Alling, married Caleb Cushing (1673–1752, H.C. 1692) on 15 March 1699. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 4:137.
2097. Joanna clearly struggled with her decision about joining Cotton, and most of the remaining letters refer to her difficult choice not to join her husband in Carolina. In September 1699, according to a letter from Theophilus to his mother, Increase Mather wrote to Joanna “wrin he said he advised you to goe to Carolina.” But then he closed the letter by asking his mother to “send word whether, or when you Intend to goe to Carolina.” Theophilus Cotton to Joanna Rosseter Cotton, 12 September 1699, Miscellaneous Bound Collection, Massachusetts Historical Society.
2098. Robert Fenwick, see the letter of 16 July 1698.
2099. Abigail Cotton was born on 9 July 1699. Joanna refers to this birth in the following letter of 13 July 1699. Kardell and Lovell, Vital Records of Sandwich, 35.
2100. See 8 July 1698.
2101. See 18 February 1698.
2102. Not found.
2103. Not found.
2104. John and Joanna’s son-in-law, Caleb Cushing.
2105. Sarah Cotton Bradbury (1670–1733) gave birth to her second set of twins, John and William, on 30 June 1699. Her first set was born on 23 March 1698, but only Samuel survived, and he died young. Despite Joanna’s impression that delivering the second twin this time was so difficult that she “tooke her leave of Husband & all her friends,” Sarah gave birth to nine more children between 1701 and 1716. Vital Records of Salisbury, Massachusetts (Topsfield, Mass., 1915), 26, 27, 530.
2106. Salisbury’s Captain William Buswell died on 21 June 1699 at the age of seventy-three. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 1:319.
2107. Mary Leverett Dudley Townsend, the wife of Penn Townsend (1651–1727), was buried on 5 July 1699. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:318–19.
2108. Increase, Abigail and Cotton Mather’s sixth child, was born on 9 July 1699. Sibley’s Harvard Graduates, 3:41.
2109. William Stockman (b. 1675) was the son of John and Sarah Pike Bradbury Stockman of Salisbury. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:199.
2110. The church records indicate that the congregation “sett appart october the 4 99 to Elect & ordain Mr Ephraim Little to be their pastor & Thomas Faunce to be their Elder.” Publications of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts Collections (hereafter CSM), 22 (Boston, 1920), 188.
2111. John Thomas Jr. (1649–1699) was the son of early Marshfield settlers John Thomas and Sarah Pitney Thomas. When he drowned he left no heirs, so his considerable property passed to his nephew, John. Marshfield: Autobiography of a Pilgrim Town (Marshfield, Mass., 1940), 138–39; Torrey, New England Marriages, 735.
2112. Bethia Thacher Howland (d. 1725) was the wife of Jabez Howland (1669–1732) of Plymouth and Duxbury. Joanna referred to Bethia’s “brother thacher.” Bethia had only one brother alive in 1699, John (1639–1713) who lived in Yarmouth. Savage, Genealogical Dictionary, 4:270–72; Torrey, New England Marriages, 394, 733.
2113. Joanna embellished her words in this section of the letter and her extra marks and slashes have rendered some of the words illegible. It is unclear whether these slashes were decorative or attempts at privacy. Most of the ellipses reflect one or two words that are indecipherable.
2114. This final section, from the “JC” on, was written as a postscript along the left margin of the first side. Like the final part of the second side, Joanna embellished many of the letters with slashes that obscure them, making several words illegible.
2115. Josiah introduced the letter in his manuscript account: “The other Letter I recd at Marblehead from Carolina, which was ye last I had from my Father & is as follows—”
2116. Robert Fenwick; see 16 July 1698.
2117. John Cotton introduced the letter in his manuscript account of his family: “To fill up this Vacant Page I shall Insert a Letter from my Father to a Man of Plymo Church & Town, Dated from Charlestown in South Carolina—Augst 1—1699—.”
2118. Not found.
2119. Baptist William Screven (d. 1713) emigrated from Kittery, Maine to South Carolina by 1696, when he purchased one thousand acres of land near Charleston. Screven, who had arrived in Maine in 1668 from England, had married Bridget Cutt(s), the daughter of a wealthy shipbuilder, in 1674. Screven’s zeal for Baptist doctrine did not prevent his serving in several local political offices. In January 1682, the Baptist church in Boston granted Screven the right to establish a Baptist church in Kittery. The Congregationalist churches were angered by Screven’s proposed church, and he was fined, imprisoned and ordered to leave Maine in 1682. Despite that order, he seems to have remained in Maine until early 1696, when he left for Carolina. The congregation he led near Charleston, which was the first Baptist church in South Carolina, adopted the London Confession of Faith, which marked them as Particular Baptists. Joe King, A History of South Carolina Baptists (Columbia, S.C., 1964), 10–14; Leah Townsend, South Carolina Baptists, 1670–1805 (Baltimore, Md., 1974), 5–12.
2120. Luke 1:1: “For as much as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us.”
2121. John Brinsley (1600–1665) attended Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and was ordained in 1624, only to be ejected from his pulpit for nonconformity in 1627 and again at the Restoration. Dictionary of National Biography, ed. Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee, 63 vols. (London, 1885–1900) (hereafter DNB).
2122. John Brinsley, The Doctrine and Practice of Pedobaptism Assserted and Vindicated (London, 1645.)
2123. Many authors, including Stephen Marshall (1594[?]–1655) published replies to John Tombes’s (1603[?]–1676) three-part printed attack on infant baptism entitled Anti-paedobaptism (London, 1652–57). Tombes published a response to Marshall’s criticism, An Examen of the sermon of Mr. Stephen Marshal about Infant baptism in a letter sent to him (London, 1645). For another example, which included Marshall’s criticisms of Tombes, see Richard Baxter, An Answer to Mr. Tombes his Valedictory Oration to the People of Bewdeley. Plain scripture proof of infants church membership and baptism being the arguments prepared for and partly managed in publicke dispute with Mr. Tombes at Bewdley on the first day of Jan. 1649: with a full reply to what he then answered and what is contained in his sermon since preached . . . which I saw, against M. Marshall, against these arguments: with a reply to his valedictory oration at Bewdley . . . (London, 1653) [Early English Books, 834:13]
2124. Joseph Sumner (b. 1674) emigrated to South Carolina from Dorchester, Massachusetts, in 1695 with his parents, Deacon Increase Sumner and Sarah Staples Sumner, and his uncle Samuel Sumner, aunt Rebecca Staples Sumner, and their large families. William Sumner Appleton, Record of the Descendants of William Sumner, of Dorchester, Mass. (Boston, 1879), 3–4.
2125. In 1695, Moses Way (1672–1737) left Chelsea, Massachusetts, for South Carolina with his newly-widowed mother, Joanna Sumner Way, and his two brothers, Aaron and William. He lived in South Carolina until his death. Joseph Sumner (see n. 8 above) and Way were cousins; Joseph’s father and Moses’s mother were siblings. A. Dane Bowen, Henry Way (1583–1667) and Descendants (Baltimore, Md., 2001), 118–21.
2126. Elizabeth Allyn (1681–1698) was the daughter of Samuel Allyn and Hannah Walley Allyn of Barnstable, and she died on 23 December 1698. “Barnstable Vital Records,” The Mayflower Descendant 2 (1900): 213.
2127. Katherine Phillips, wife of Colonel John Philips (d. 1726), died on 24 February 1699. Vital Records of Charlestown, Massachusetts to 1850, ed. Roger Joslyn (Boston, 1984).
2128. Isa. 49:8: “Thus saith the Lord, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages.”
2129. Acts 4:12: “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
2130. The passage is from Vergil’s Aeneid (book 1, line 198). As Vergil wrote it, “O passi graviora, dabit dues his quoque finem.” “I have suffered rather painfully, god will give an end to this, too.”
2131. Misdated “May 5” by the Massachusetts Historical Society.
2132. Not found.
2135. Joseph Alliston/Allison married Comfort Wilkins before 1693. He died before this case went to court; see the note below. Torrey, New England Marriages, 14.
2136. Chief Justice Edmund Bohun was commissioned in May 1698 but had a tempestuous relationship with the proprietary government. In the fall of 1699 the Lord Proprietors warned him that his inability to get along with Gov. Blake was because he had “done things imprudently and irregularly”; they further reminded him to accept only his fees and “not to show too great a love of money,” implying that Bohun had accepted inappropriate funds. While living in Carolina, Bohun corresponded with the Royal Society of London, to which he sent seed, plants and dried butterflies illustrating the flora and fauna of Carolina. He died in the same yellow fever epidemic that killed Cotton. Edgar, South Carolina: A History, 178; History of South Carolina, ed. Yates Snowden, 5 vols. (Chicago, 1920), 1:126, 130, 132. As he did so well in Plymouth, Cotton struggled to remain connected, even on the frontier of the British mainland colonies.
2137. Joseph Morton (d. 1721) was the son of Gov. Joseph Morton and came to the Carolina colony with his father by 1681. He inherited his father’s considerable property, and, by the time of his own death, owned nearly 5,000 acres and seventy-six slaves. “Landgrave” is a title granted by the proprietors. In 1697, Morton was chosen as a judge of the Vice-Admiralty court, but his tenure was colored by an accusation that he profited personally from his judicial decisions regarding merchant vessels. When his bid for the governor’s office was defeated on a technicality, he became an outspoken critic of the government, even while serving as an elected gepresentative. Edgar, Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, 2:475–76.
2138. See n. 12 below.
2139. A warrant of commitment to a prison.
2140. John Boone (1645–1711[?]) came to Carolina from Barbados by 1673 and was granted two hundred acres. Although he became a more substantial planter, he first made a career as a Native trader and Native slave dealer. His public service was marred by illegal slave trading, piracy and theft, leading to his forced removal from the Grand Council; when he was elected to the Assembly in 1706, he declined to serve. A major in the militia, he became a member of the anti-proprietary party. Edgar, Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, 2:88–89.
2141. Nicholas Trott (1663–1740) arrived in South Carolina in May 1699 after serving as attorney general in Bermuda. With a commission as the first attorney general in Carolina, he became an outspoken critic of Governor Joseph Blake and Joseph Morton. In 1700, Trott was suspended and eventually arrested by Blake, despite having recently been elected to the Assembly. He continued to hold political office in Carolina and gain great personal power, serving as Speaker of the House and Chief Justice. He is also known for his legal work, especially for compiling The Laws of the Province of South Carolina (1736). David Ramsay, History of South Carolina (Newberry, S.C., 1858), 2:275; Edgar, Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, 2:681–84.
2142. In November 1698, Edward Randolph left New York and sailed for Charlestown as a surveyor general under orders from the Board of Trade to investigate customs racketeering. He spent the winter of 1698–99 in Charlestown and was in Bermuda by April. Samuel Day was the governor of the royal colony of Bermuda but had only been on the island for about a year when Randolph arrived. Randolph tried to re-administer the oath of office, but Day refused, arguing that he had already taken the oath in England. This seemingly minor incident ignited Randolph’s systematic attack against Day, largely through letters sent to the Board of Trade. In these letters, Randolph claimed that Day’s crimes ran the gamut—from wasting gunpowder to announce his arrivals and departures by cannon to drinking orange juice from the King’s Chapel chalice. Copies of the damning letters that Randolph had written to the Board of Trade were secretly supplied by Randolph’s clerk, and they infuriated Day. After verbally attacking Randolph over his newly-appointed customs collector in May 1699, Day threw Randolph in jail. Other damning letters against Day flooded the Board of Trade, and Randolph’s attempts to unseat the corrupt governor enjoyed great support in London. Michael G. Hall, Edward Randolph and the American Colonies, 1676–1703 (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1960), 191–97, 201–2, 211, 221.
2143. Actually, Robert Fenwick was a privateer before he came to Carolina, despite Cotton’s indignation. See 16 July 1698.
2144. Gilbert Ashley was living in South Carolina by 1691 and served in the Assembly in 1695, and as a justice of the peace. Edgar, Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, 2:43.
2145. Eliah Adams (d. 1708) married Priscilla Winthrop (b. 1669) by 1698 in Boston. Torrey, New England Marriages, 3.
2146. For his initial query to Cotton about infant baptism, see Lord’s letter of 7 August 1699.
2147. Tear, one word missing.
2148. Tear, one word missing.
2149. Possibly John Jones (d. 1730) and his wife, Mary. Jones was granted at least 460 acres of land in Berkeley County in 1717 and helped to lead a popular revolt against the Council in 1727. Edgar, Biographical Directory of the South Carolina House of Representatives, 2:372.
2150. Tear, one word missing.
2151. Not found. The letter was most likely Cotton’s reply to Lord’s letter of 7 August 1699.