A Stated Meeting of the Society was held at No. 25 Beacon Street, Boston, on Friday, 23 February, 1906, at three o’clock in the afternoon, the President, George Lyman Kittredge, LL.D., in the chair.
The Records of the last Stated Meeting were read and, after a slight change in the last paragraph, were approved as amended.
The Corresponding Secretary reported that a letter had been received from Mr. Robert Dickson Weston-Smith of Cambridge accepting Resident Membership.
President Kittredge announced the death on 25 January, 1906, of General Joseph Wheeler, a Corresponding Member, and paid a brief tribute to the memory of this Southern soldier who never forgot his Massachusetts ancestry,396 of which he was justly proud.
Mr. Henry H. Edes exhibited a small portrait of Amos Kent, and made the following communication:
At the Stated Meeting of the Society in March, 1899,397 I had the privilege of exhibiting to the members a miniature on ivory of the Rev. Dr. Joseph McKean, for nine years Boylston Professor of Rhetoric and Oratory in Harvard College. A few days after the meeting I received a call from Mr. Francis Randall Appleton (H. C. 1875), who told me he had long been seeking this miniature, and asked leave to copy it. This permission I readily got for him, and a life-size portrait in oil was painted by Mr. Joseph De Camp at the charge of Mr. Appleton who, with characteristic generosity, gave it to the Porcellian Club, of which Professor McKean was the second Grand Marshal (1794 to 1798), and who himself is a prominent member. The miniature was also engraved for the sixth volume of our Publications at the charge of one of our most generous and devoted members.
At a dinner-party which I attended last week, my hostess told me she had just been examining some old family papers which had come to her by inheritance, and that among them she had found a letter written in 1799 by her grandfather to his younger brother, in which he gave an account of the origin of the Porcellian Club. I expressed the hope that I might be allowed to see this interesting paper; and after dinner my wish was not only gratified, but permission was given me to bring it here this afternoon and to print it in our Transactions. It is also my privilege to exhibit the original portrait of the writer of this letter, who was a member of the Porcellian Club, into which he was initiated as early as 1793, — two years after the Club was formed. His younger brother was initiated in 1799, the same year in which this letter was written.
This account of the origin of the Club varies from any which I have seen,398 and is especially valuable since it was written, only eight years after the Club was formed, by one of its early members who, graduating in the Class of 1795, was a Freshman when the events of which he writes occurred, and must have known the facts in the case. The most interesting single statement is of the place in Cambridge where the dinner was served at which it was determined to form a permanent organization. This place has been fully identified. The writer makes one palpable error, — where he places the date of this dinner “about two years before I graduated.” He undoubtedly intended to say initiated instead of graduated, which would accord with the known facts; and his error is easily explained by the fact, which for the moment he may have forgotten, that initiation to the Club then occurred two years before graduation.
Our late associate Dr. James R. Chadwick is authority for the statement that after holding the most exalted office in the gift of the Porcellian Club, Professor McKean attempted its disruption, on account of the conviviality of its members. Color is given to this statement by the fact that Dr. McKean subsequently became the Corresponding Secretary of the Society for the Suppression of Intemperance,399 and by some passages in the letter I am about to communicate, ‘which was written, it should be remembered, when the accepted standards of hospitality and conviviabty were quite different from those of to-day. Whatever may have been the shortcomings or excesses of some members of the Club in the early days of its history, the uniformly high character and distinction of its personnel from the beginning furnishes the reason why the alleged attempt of Dr. McKean, if made, failed of success.
Engraved for The Colonial Society of Massachusetts from a miniature in the possession of Mrs. Charles Theodore Carruth
It only remains for me to say a word as to the writer of this letter and his brother, who were sixth in descent from James Kent of Ipswich and Newbury, brother of Richard Kent, Jr., of Kent’s Island, and sons of Joseph and Jane (Moody) Kent of Newbury port.
The Hon. Amos Kent was born 16 October, 1774, on Kent’s Island; married 27 November, 1799, Abigail, daughter of the Hon. Joshua Atherton of Amherst, New Hampshire; had a large family, and died 18 June, 1824, at Chester, New Hampshire. He read law in the office of the Hon. William Gordon, Attorney General of New Hampshire; was regarded as a well-read lawyer; was chosen to the State Senate; “was an enthusiastic patron and an officer of agricultural societies, state and county;” and was possessed of mental powers “naturally strong and discriminating.” His brother-in-law, the Hon. Charles Humphrey Atherton (H. C. 1794), a classmate of Professor McKean, was an early member of the Porcellian Club, a member of the Phi Beta Kappa, and in later years a member of Congress from New Hampshire.
Moody Kent was also born at Kent’s Island 22 April, 1779. He graduated at Harvard in the Class of 1801, was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa, and President of the Hasty Pudding Club. Like his brother Amos, he went to New Hampshire and entered the profession of law, in which he took good rank and accumulated what was then regarded as a large property, two thirds of which he bequeathed to the New Hampshire Asylum for the Insane. He died,unmarried, at Pittsfield, New Hampshire, 1 February, 1866, at the age of 89.400
The text of the letter follows.
Chester July 6th 1799
I must beg pardon, my dear brother, for neglecting to answer yours of the 5th of June untill this time. Absence from my office & business when at home have hitherto prevented me. You tell me you have lately been invited to become a member of the porcelian, or pig club & request my opinion of it, & whether it would be eligible to join it. The history of the club is short & I will endeavor to give you a short sketch of it. About two years before I graduated a number of persons were dining together on Saturday afternoon, at a public house then kept by a Mr Moore.401 After the bottle had circulated pretty lively a few hours, it was proposed, that there should be another meeting of the same persons, at the same place, to dine upon the same kind of food, which was roast pig, in a month from that time. It was immediately agreed to, nemine contradicente, & another meeting was accordingly held. At this second meeting, it appears some of the persons had thought of establishing a convivial club, for the purposes of eating & drinking, and when the glass had been round sufficiently often it was proposed; every one present instantly joined heartily in the measure & a constitution & some few laws were soon after drawn up, by a committee chosen for the purpose. Additional members were invited by permission of the club & the society was thus established. The professed object of the club, so long as I was a member of it was enjoyment, & that kind of enjoyment to be derived from eating & drinking was the principal. It is pretended you know in all such cases, that the company of our friends is the principal inducement to such meetings. I have been led however to doubt the truth of such a pretension, since I have seldom, at college, found a number of friends much delighted with each other, for any length of time, without the aid of the bottle. It is undoubtedly, very proper that wine should be introduced on such occasions, as it adds much to conviviality & to the sprightliness of conversation, it unbends the mind from labor, & gives it the same relaxation which rest does to the labourer’s body. What I would warn you against, in such cases, is excess, never suffer yourself in any case whatever to drink so deeply as to loose your reason in any degree whatever. I was perhaps, particularly fortunate, in this respect through the whole of my college life, tho’ I must confess it was more [owing] to the strength of my head, than to any restraining power or to any prudential motives. Yet in some instances my foolish ambition carried me to such excess, as to make cause for long & bitter repentance. There is no species of imprudence whatever, but what a drunken man may be lead into, & depend upon it, he will always find persons enough in college, to take him by the hand upon such occasions, & lead him forth upon their business, & to answer particular purposes of their own, without regarding the consequences to him. A man in this situation is doubly a slave, first to rum & then to the first designing person who pleases to make use of him.
In giving you the history of the pig club I have considerably digressed, I will however return to the subject. You ask me whether it would be desirable to join it. My opinion is this of all college societies. The society itself is not to be so much considered, as the persons who belong to the society. I would advise you to join every one to which you are invited, where the persons belonging to it are such as you would be pleased to associate with, I would join no other. You ought to be particularly on your guard, how you express an opinion of any society, whether you belong to it or not, you will make a great many enemies, by the least freedom of opinion in such cases. I shall expect you to make me a visit in the course of this month, if your conveniency will admit of it, I beg you not to disappoint me. Bring your Chum with you, if he would take pleasure in such a party.
In haste your affectionate brother
Mr Moody Kent
Mr Moody Kent
Student at Harvard College
To be left with Mr Joseph Kent402
July 6th 1799 —No 9
His Apology — Porcell.Club —
Its Hist . & Character . Drinking
— His Adv about Coll . Clubs &c
Dangers of excess &c He invites
me & Parsons403 to visit Chester
Mr. Albert Matthews made the following remarks:
The matters to which I am about to call your attention are of trifling importance, but possibly are worth a passing notice. At the meeting of this Society held in March, 1902,404 I communicated the English text of the diploma conferred upon Washington by Harvard College in 1776, copied from a contemporary Boston newspaper, and stated that, so far as I was aware, the English text had never been reprinted. A little later Mr. Kittredge called my attention to the fact that it was reprinted in 1850 by Joseph T. Buckingham.405 It may be of interest to note that it was also reprinted in a London magazine as early as 1776.406
In February, 1904, Mr. Edes communicated a poem called A New Song, copied from a sheet printed presumably in 1788.407 I have since ascertained that this poem was written by Jonathan Mitchell Sewall.408
There was printed in 1781 in a London magazine an article entitled The Sentiments of an American Woman, and signed An American Woman.409 This article was an appeal to the women of America “to give up luxurious ornaments, that the money might be laid out for the soldiers.” It is preceded in the London magazine by these words:
The following letter, written by Mrs. Washington, wife of the General was read in the churches of Virginia, and the principal ladies of the several parishes engaged to collect the contribution of the fair sex who might be disposed to encourage the design.
Mr. Worthington C. Ford writes me that this article was hitherto unknown to him, and considers that its attribution to Mrs. Washington is of doubtful authenticity.
In a communication made to this Society in February, 1904, the history of some sobriquets applied to Washington during his life-time — Cincinnatus, the American Fabius, and the Father of his Country — was given.410 It will perhaps not be without interest to show when his bnthday was first celebrated. It may be surprising to some to learn that this was as early as 1782. It is possible that this is a belated date, for I have made no attempt to make a special investigation, and the extracts I shall quote are merely a few of many notes I have taken in casual examinations of newspapers. It will be observed that for a decade Washington’s birthday was celebrated not on the 22d, but on the 11th of February. In a Boston newspaper of Monday, 18 February, 1782, we read:
Last Tuesday a large number of Gentlemen met at Mr. Robinson’s Tavern on Milton Hill, to celebrate the anniversary Birth Day of His Excellency General WASHINGTON.— The Company were honored with the presence of General LINCOLN, and many other American officers of distinction.411
In a Boston paper of Monday, 16 February, 1784, it was stated that “Last Wednesday, His Excellency General Washington entered the 52d year of his age.”412
In a Boston paper of 10 February, 1785, appeared the following:
As the anniversary of the birth of the illustrious General WASHINGTON, is to be celebrated as usual, at Milton, to-morrow, to contribute to the hilarity of a day which is hoped will be annually observed, the following song is inserted, which was made in the city of New-York, for the entertainment of a select club of Whigs who assemble annually for the purpose.
[Tune—God Bless America.]
While songs employ each voice,
Let trumpets sound.
The thirteen stripes display,
In flags and streamers gay
’Tis W A S H I N G T O N’s birth day,
Let joy abound.
From scenes of rural peace,
From affluence and ease,
At freedom’s call;
A hero from his birth,
Great Washington stands forth,
The scourge of George and North,
And tyrants all.
The silver trump of fame,
His glory shall proclaim,
Till time is done.
Genius with taste refin’d,
Courage with coolness join’d,
’Bove all, an honest mind,
Has W A S H I N G T O N.
Those mighty chiefs of old,
Caesars and heroes bold,
Who realms have won;
Smit by his brighter blaze,
Hide their diminish’d rays,
And yield the palm of praise
To W A S H I N G T O N.
This land of Liberty
Flourish in Peace;
Long may he live to prove
A grateful people’s love
And, late, to Heaven remove,
Where joys ne’er cease.
Fill the glass to the brink,
W A S H I N G T O N’s health we’ll drink,
’Tis his birth day.
Glorious deeds he has done.
By him our cause is won,
Long live great W A S H I N G T O N,
The information that the day was celebrated annually in New York is interesting, though it is difficult to believe that it could have been observed there for more than a year or so previous to the above date.
In the same year his birthday was celebrated in Boston as well as at Milton Hill:
Yesterday being the anniversary birth day of our late illustrious General, the same was celebrated in this town, and at Milton, by a number of undissembling patriots — A tribute chiefly due to his many virtues.414
It is probable that by this time the observance of the day had become general, for in 1785 an elaborate celebration took place in Vermont, as appears from the following notice:
BENNINGTON, February 14.
Friday last, being the anniversary of his Excellency General Washington’s birth day, it was observed here by a number of gentlemen and ladies who collected to commemorate it. Inspired with a heartfelt gratitude for the magnanimity of the preserver of our freedom, and a sense of his meritorious atchievements recent in the minds of all present, produced the happiest effects and “joy was elate.”
Several poetical pieces in honor of the illustrious Commander, were judiciously introduced between the intervals of the toasts, which diffused additional pleasure to the company. Every heart participated in this joyous occasion, and the conviviality was replete with true decorum.
After dinner the following toasts were drank.
- 1st. His Excellency General Washington; and may America ever hold grateful impressions for his unparallelled services.
- 2d. The United States of America.
- 3d. The King of France and the friendly powers who generously stept forth for the defence of American Liberty.
- 4th. The Continental Congress.
- 5th. The Governor and State of Vermont.
- 6th. The army of the United States, who perservered in the cause of liberty and obtained freedom for America, at the risque of a halter from a merciless enemy.
- 7th. Col. Warner,415 and the immortal memory of the brave who fell in the cause of their country.
- 8th. The battle of Bennington.
- 9th. The volunteers of Ireland.
- 10th. Wisdom to the senators who may be appointed for the revision of our constitution.416
- 11th. Dr. Price417
- 12th. Trade and Agriculture
- 13th. Arts and Manufactures.
- 14th. Mirth and good fellowship, attached to liberality of sentiment.418
It will be remembered that Vermont was not admitted to the Union until 1791. In 1786 a new feature was introduced at Boston:
Last Saturday [11 February], being the anniversary of the birth-day of GEORGE WASHINGTON, Esq; the day was noticed here by a discharge of cannon, &c. A circumstance which then occurred, being singular, may deserve notice — About 10 o’clock, the scholars of the several publick schools in town, to the number of two or three hundred, proceeded into State-Street, where they testified their respect for the day, on which was born the Deliverer of their Country, by repeated huzzas; after which they returned to their several schools. On Monday the day was celebrated as usual at Milton — when and where were conspicuous, that joy, conviviality and true decorum, which the remembrance of the virtues of the illustrious American Cincinnatus, must ever diffuse in the breasts of freemen.419
This pleasing custom appears to have become a fixture, for in 1788 we read:
Monday last [11 February], being the anniversary of the birth-day of his Excellency the President of the late Federal Convention, the great and good WASHINGTON — agreeably to annual custom, the pupils of the several publick writing schools in this town, to the number of 500, proceeded in files, from the school in Court-Street,420 into State-Street, where, having formed a hollow-square, they gave three huzzas in honour of the day.421
We next learn how the day was celebrated in Philadelphia in 1789:
The anniversary birth-day of President WASHINGTON, was celebrated in Philadelphia by the ringing of bells, discharging of cannon, and in the consummation of that felicity which genuine federalism cannot fail to bestow. Thirteen toasts were drank the 1st and 2d, that Washington and Adams might be President and Vice-President — and the rest, catholick and federal.422
In a Boston paper of 12 February, 1791, appeared the following account:
PRESIDENT’S BIRTH DAY.
Yesterday, being the anniversary of the birth-day of our beloved President, the same was celebrated by a great number of respectable characters in this, and the adjacent towns. A federal discharge of cannon saluted the morn, which with a display of flags, &c. distinguished the day. A large number of gentlemen dined at Concert-Hall — after dinner a number of federal and sentimental toasts were drank, and the close of the day demonstrated that genuine festivity is not incompatible with strict decorum and true republicanism.423
In 1792 the 11th of February was still the day of celebration,424 but in a Boston newspaper of 23 February, 1793, we are told that “the President’s Birth-Day, Was yesterday celebrated in this town;”425 and in a Boston paper of 11 February, 1795, we read:
☞ On this day, old style, the President of the United States was born. Of late it has been customary to notice it on the 22d.426
It was not unusual in this country in the eighteenth century to celebrate the birthdays of the Sovereigns of England and of the various American Governors, but so far as I am aware the only person, not a sovereign or a governor, whose birthday was regularly celebrated during his lifetime was Washington. At all events, the extracts which have been cited are evidence of the veneration in which he was held.
Mr. Andrew McFarland Davis commented upon the frequency with which the title of His Excellency was applied to Washington; and called attention to a passage and a marginal note in Adam Anderson’s Historical and Chronological Deduction of the Origin of Commerce, published in 1764. After referring to the suggestion made by Sir Robert Cotton in 1609, and put into practice by James I. in 1611, of creating the “new Dignity of Baronets,” as a means of furnishing revenue for the Sovereign, Anderson, having in mind the American Colonies of the period at which he wrote, proceeds to make the following comment:
☞ In Case of a settled Peace in America, might not a new Degree of Honour, (or perhaps an old one, limited to our Island and Continent Plantations) raise a considerable Sum, to be applied solely for making the most needful Improvements in our several Colonies?427
Mr. Francis H. Lee exhibited the following portraits and relics of Washington: (1) A portrait, by an unknown artist, bearing the legend, Wisdom supported by Liberty, Presenting Genl. Washington, a Code of Laws for Establishing American Independence, published in London 5 November, 1801;428 (2) A portrait, of which the head was after Stuart, designed and drawn by Dr. Charles Buxton and engraved by Cornelius Tiebout;429(3) A portrait executed from a portrait by Rembrandt Peale and engraved by David Edwin;430 (4) A fragment of patch, bearing the portrait of Washington, taken from a piece which covered a sofa early in the last century; (5) A gold medal given to the Hon. Leverett Saltonstall (H. C. 1802) by a Southern Member of Congress, when Mr. Saltonstall was a Representative from Massachusetts. The obverse of this medal is a bust in uniform, facing the left, within a wreath of laurel leaves, and bears the legend, he is in glory, the world in tears. The reverse has a skull and bones at the base, and bears the legend, in four concentric lines, b. feb. ii. 1732. gen. am. armies, 1775. re. 1783. pres. u. s. am. ’89. r. ’96. gen. arm. u. s. ’98. ob. d. 15. ’99.431
Mr. Edes communicated the following letter of Washington:
Philada 27. Jan 1794
Just before I left Mount Vernon in October last, I wrote to you respecting the discharge of a bond of yours assigned to me by Mr. Jno Lewis, for £146.13.4, payable with interest the 18 day of May .93; but as I have not heard from you on the subject, I presume the letter never reached your hands. My want of money urges me, Sir, to beg that you will cause the bond to be discharged with all convenient dispatch.
I am, Sir,
Mr Jno. Cowper
To Mr. Jno. Cowper
27 .th Jan: 1794
Engraved for The Colonial Society of Massachusetts from an original in the possession of Francis Henry Lee, Esquire
The Rev. Francis Doughty came to the Bay Colony probably in 1638 and is first known in America as an inhabitant of Dorchester.433 He was the son of Francis Doughty, merchant, at one time an alderman of Bristol, England, who made his will 16 May, 1634,434 he being then of Hampsteed in the parish of Oldsbury, Gloucestershire.435 His son, the emigrant, signs the will as witness “Fr: Doughtie, minstr,” and this is the earliest record that has been found of him. He was neither of Oxford nor of Dublin University. In 1634 he was married and had three chddren, Mary, Francis, and Elias, who, as also his wife Bridget,436 were afterwards with him here. The day before he made his will, Alderman Doughty executed a deed of trust of his farm at Hampsteed for ten years, for the payment of certain sums; subject to this trust the leasehold farm was left to his son Francis; and his daughter, Elizabeth, then unmarried, was left sole executrix. This daughter Elizabeth afterwards said that her brother was “in his fathers displeasure” and that she had induced her father to make his will as he did at the solicitation of her brother, who promised that thus it should turn out more to her advantage.437
The next that is known of the refugee is that on All Saints’ Day (1 November), 1635, be preached at the “Chapel of Wapping,” and in his bidding prayer before the sermon took occasion to commit a blazing indiscretion, calculated to be almost as annoying to the Puritans as it was offensive to their opponents. An English canon of 1603 provides for the “Bidding Prayer” thus:
Before all sermons, lectures, and homilies, the preachers and ministers shall move the people to join with them in prayer, in this form or to this effect, as briefly as conveniently they may: “Ye shall pray for Christ’s Holy Catholic Church, that is, for the whole congregation of Christian people dispersed throughout the whole world, and especially for the Churches of England, Scotland, and Ireland. And herein I require you most especially to pray for the king’s most excellent Majesty, our Sovreign Lord James [Charles], King of England, Scotland, Fiance, and Ireland, defender of the faith, and supreme governor of these his realms, and all other his dominions and countries, over all persons, in all causes, as well ecclesiastical as temporal, etc.438
What Mr. Doughty called the King, at Wapping, was, “Charles by common election and general consent King of England.” This coming to the notice of the High Commission, was not considered “to the same effect” as the words of the canon. Accordingly, we find him before that court: on 28 January, 1635–36, he “appeared and took oath;”439 and on 4 Februaiy was “pronounced contumacious for non-appearance, his punishment being reserved till next court day,”440 — when he seems to have appeared, for, on 11 February it was ordered that the “defendant is to satisfy the Bishop of London [Juxon] within a month.”441 On 18 February he desired “his petition to be read;”442 it was “referred to the Bishop of London,” and on 5 May Mr. Doughty “gave up the following submission which be desired might be accepted:”
The humble submission of Francis Doughty, clerk. Whereas it is charged upon me that in a prayer before my sermon upon All Saints Day last past, in the chapel of Wapping, instead of giving his sacred Majesty his just and royal title, according to the canon in that case provided, I used these words, ‘Charles, by common election and general consent King of England,’ I protest that I did not intend or premeditate any such detestable words, and if through inadvertency I let any such fall, I am heartily sorry, and most humbly beseech his Majesty’s gracious pardon, professing and acknowledging from the bottom of my heart, that his Majesty’s crown and dignity is most justly descended unto his sacred person by lineal succession and inheritance, and shall daily pray that it may continue in his royal line to many generations. London, February 19th, 1635.443
This submission the court accepted, and having admonished him “to beware how he let sbp any undutiful speeches against his Majesty’s church or state, dismissed him.” Mr. Doughty seems thus to have escaped rather easily from a really dangerous situation.
The next notice we have of him is in a letter of 6 April, 1637, from Algernon Percy, Earl of Northumberland, to Sir Thomas Roe. The Earl, writing from London, says that he —
has only seen the Archbishop of Canterbury once since his coming out of the country; will take occasion to say something to him concerning Mr. Doughtie: who is going to settle himself upon two small livings which he has.444
When before the High Commission, Mr. Doughty was vicar of Sodbury,445 Gloucestershire, and this letter would seem to indicate that he had been deprived of that benefice; unless indeed it was some other Mr. Doughtie446 the Earl was purposing to settle in the two small livings. For the intervening time the acts of the Court of High Commission are lost, otherwise we should probably find an account of his trial for that nonconformity for which Doughty is said to have left England. The time of his coming to America is not known, but his name appears as one of the forty-six ancient purchasers at Cohannet. Mr. Emery argues that this purchase was made in 1638, not in 1637 as others have stated.447 Mr. Doughty was in the Bay Colony in the summer of 1639, though then purposing, as his sister thought, to leave this jurisdiction. It does not appear that there was any bad feeling between him and the magistrates here, but he was in serious trouble nevertheless, for his sister Elizabeth, executrix of his father’s estate, having in the meantime been married to William Cole of Sutton, Chew-Magna, Somersetshire, came here also, with her husband, and entered suit for a considerable amount, wliich she claimed her brother owed her, in equity, if not in law, from the settlement of her father’s estate.448 Mr. Lechford took up her cause as advocate with a rather indiscreet zeal which got him into serious trouble with the magistrates, who disciplined him for approaching the jury out of court in his client’s behalf. The details of the case are known only from Mr. Lechford’s Note-Book and are not easy to understand, but fortunately it is not necessary for us to retry the case. Throughout the protracted litigation concerning Mrs. Cole’s claims against her brother, the officials of the Colony seem to have been scrupulously anxious to be both just and merciful. In the complaint of the Coles is the following request:
And because the said Complts have not such exact proofe of the premises as the Law requires therefore they humbly pray that the said Francis [Doughty] may be enjoyned to answer the premises and every parte thereof in writing upon his oath.449
On 3 September of the next year, 1640, was tried another suit of the Coles against Francis Doughty, concerning a deed of trust made between the Coles, before marriage, and Francis and Bridget Doughty.450 The jury found for the defendant, and Doughty was given £10 costs. Doughty then, at the same session of the court, sued the Coles “for unjust molestation,” asking to have the before-mentioned deed of trust delivered into the court and cancelled; the jury found for Doughty with costs, and “thereupon ye judgmt of ye Corte was accordingly yt ye said deed indented should be cancelled;” but as Mrs. Cole, who was chiefly interested in the deed and bad procured “ye said Doughty to be arested,” was not present with her husband at the trial, the court respited the cancelling of the bond for eight months, to give the Coles opportunity, if they wished, to show cause why the indenture should not be cancelled. As they did not appear, the deed was cancelled by order of the court in May, 1641.
Meanwhile, Mr. Doughty was in Cohannet, hoping, I suppose, to be received as a minister, or, at least, to be allowed there the privileges of a church member, which, owing to his more liberal opinion concerning the baptism of children, and, probably, from his Presbyterian leanings, he could not have acquired in the Bay Colony. Cohannet was organized in the autumn of 1638, and it seems that the name was changed to Taunton and that the church there was organized, after the strictest Bay Colony model, in the end of the year 1639 or the beginning of 1640. At this organization Mr. John Wilson and Mr. Richard Mather with some others were present to “give the right hand of fellowship.” Lechford’s account is as follows:
Cohannet, alias Taunton, is in Plymouth Patent. There is a Church gathered of late, and some ten or twenty of the Church, the rest excluded. Master Hooke Pastor, master Streate Teacher. Master Hookereceived ordination from the hands of one Bishop a Schoolmaster, and one Parker an Husbandman, aud then master Hooke joyned in ordaining master Streate. One master Doughty, a Minister, opposed the gathering of the Church there, alleadging that according to the Covenant of Abraham, all mens children that were of baptized parents, and so Abrahams children, ought to be baptized; and spake so in publique, or to that effect, which was held a disturbance, and the Ministers spake to the Magistrate to order him: the Magistrate commanded the Constable, who dragged master Doughty out of the Assembly. He was forced to goe away from thence, with his wife and children. . . . And being a man of estate when he came [to] the country, is undone.451
This is the incident which Mr. Brodhead represents thus: “Francis Doughty, a dissenting clergyman, while preaching at Cohasset,452 was dragged out of the assembly for venturing to assert that ‘Abraham’s children should have been baptized.’”453 This is inaccurate and hardly intelligible. However, Mrs. Lamb follows Brodhead almost verbatim.454 What Lechford means by saying that Mr. Doughty “was forced to goe away” from Taunton is not quite clear. Doughty was not banished, but he was not made a freeman, his office as minister was not recognized, and be was not allowed the privileges of a church member, and it may be that he was otherwise made uncomfortable. At a General Court at Plymouth 2 March, 1640, his servant was set in the stocks “for swearing profanely” and he himself was fined thirty shillings for selling a pound of powder to the natives.455 This was a large sum; of the eight towns in the Plymouth Patent four including Taunton paid but fifty shillings each by general levy for the officers of the Patent. This fine was allowed by the General Court, on petition of Taunton, to that town on condition of their building a passable road through the swamps to Plymouth. Seven years later the General Court demanded the return of that thirty shillings or the making of the road which Taunton had not made.456 Lechford, arguing that the magistrates enforced the decisions of the ministers, says, “was not . . . master Doughty forced to the Island of Aquedney;” and in a paper probably written by Doughty’s son-in-law, we read that in coming to New England to escape trouble in England he “found that he had got out of the frying-pan into the fire.” The same thing might possibly be said of his change from New England to New Netherland. For as Mr. Trumbull remarks, “He failed . . . ‘to secure that happy home,’ which (Mr. Brodhead tells us) he came, from persecutions in Massachusetts, to seek.”457
I do not know how Mr. Doughty got on at Newport, Rhode Island.458 He seems to have been on the Island at least a year, and his name appears in the Newport records, which I have had no opportunity to examine. But he was not likely to be pleased, however the Rhode Islanders treated him, with that common refuge which his friends the Dutch ministers called the latrina of New England. With the record of his having sold twelve acres of land at Taunton, his connection with the Old Colony ceases. From Rhode Island he betook himself to New Amsterdam, where he was well received by Director Kieft, who was then promoting emigration from New England. Doughty took the oath of allegiance and received on 28 March, 1642, a patent for 13,332 acres459 at Mespat (Newtown), Long Island. Here he was joined by Richard Smith and others of his friends. They had for neighbors the settlements of Mrs. Hutchinson at Annie’s Hoeck and of John Throgmorton at Throg’s Neck, and Lady Deborah Moody with her Baptists from Salem at Gravensande,460— all together involved in common disaster when in September, 1643, the Indians unexpectedly attacked them. The Newtown settlement then numbered over eighty persons, some of the men were killed and most of their houses burnt and their cattle killed.461Doughty and his settlers escaped to New Amsterdam, where he acted as minister to the English and where he is said to have founded the first Presbyterian church. The Newtown people made a half-hearted attempt to return to their patent during the Indian war, and after it was concluded in 1645 Mr. Doughty and others went back to Newtown, but soon fell out over property rights, Mr. Doughty claiming a sort of patroonship. Kieft decided against Doughty, giving him only his private farm, on his appealing disallowed the appeal, and condemned Doughty to twenty-four hours’ imprisonment and a fine of twenty-five guilders, and he was kept in jail until the fine was paid. He removed to Flushing in 1646 or 1647, where again lie was the first minister. O’Callaghan calls him an Independent, but the Dutch ministers writing with full knowledge and of this very point say that he and Denton462 were Presbyterians. The Flushing people, among whom later was Captain John Underhill who, whatever his faults, seems to have saved Manhattan in the Indian ware (1643–1645), promised Mr. Doughty one hundred guilders salary.
Meantime trouble arose again from Mrs. Cole. She and her husband seem to have gone to Wheelwright’s settlement at Exeter, New Hampshire, but in 1644 they were again in Boston, petitioning the General Court to reopen their case, and on 29 May, William Cole her husband having lately died, Mrs. Cole so far prevailed that she was “alowed a bill of reveiw in the action . . . whereby her deede that was cancelled may be made good, as before the cancelling thereof.”463 Then she seems to have given the Colony a rest for three years; but in the spring of 1647 she obtained from the General Court an order for the Secretary to write and send by special messenger to Doughty a letter saying that —
though nothing was shewed, in ye 6 months limited by ye Corte of Assistants, why ye deede should not be canceled, nor nothing since wch may cause us to question ye formr verdit, & iudgmt, yet, etc.,464
and desiring Mr. Doughty to come himself or to send the Court an authentic copy of the deed of release, or other instruments or evidences which in court he formerly produced, that the court may review the case, and saying further that if he does not come within six months the court is resolved to proceed as best they may in the matter. He did not appear; and in November, out of consideration for the widowhood and poverty of this persistent woman, the General Court, asserting that the Court of Assistants had done her no injustice and had followed the law of England and the laws and custom of the Colony, nevertheless annulled the cancellation of the before-mentioned deed so far as the power and credit of the General Court may prevail and further provided that “y” order shalbe exemplified undr the seale of this colony, if ye petitionr shall so desire.”465
Mrs. Cole still pursued the Court: which, though manifestly losing patience, on 18 October, 1648, agreed466 to endeavor to procure Mr. Doughty’s return to Boston to answer if Mrs. Cole would put up good security to pay charges and possible damages. In May, 1649,467 she petitioned the Court again in the same matter. Finally, in May, 1650, the Court answered that they had done what they conceive is fully just under which the petitioner “ought to rest herself satisfied nor can they further act therein.”468
In May, 1647, Stuyvesant the new autocrat arrived in New Amsterdam, and considering that his own authority was involved, promptly took sides against the colonists and in support of the actions of the retiring Director Kieft. In some degree he favored Doughty, even as was afterward claimed going to the length of compelling the Flushing people to choose him for their minister.469 However, they soon fell out. The Flushing people did not pay the salary as promised and we find him raising tobacco there.470 The uncomfortable position in which he found himself in relation to the Director General is thus stated in the Remonstrance of New Netherland:
In the beginning, also, when Director Kieft was still here, the English Clergyman requested permission to depart to the Islands or to Netherland, as he had lived and labored a long while without proper maintenance, and as his land was now confiscated; but he always received an unfavorable answer and was threatened with this and that. Finally, it came to pass that he may depart on condition of promising under his hand that, wherever he should go, he would not mention, nor complain of the manner he was treated here in New Netherland by Director Kieft or Stuyvesant.471
This was not denied, but it was asserted that he was in debt to the Company. Van der Donck was partially successful in obtaining better conditions for the people of Manhattan, but excited such animosity of the Company that he was refused passage on any of their ships, after his wife and children were embarked, and they sailed without him. It was at this time (1653), while van der Donck was still in Holland, that the Commissioners of the United Colonies, who were inquiring into the alleged purpose of Stuyvesant to use the Indians against New England, saw Mrs. van der Donck and her father at Staten Island.472 Mrs. van der Donck had some evidence that seems to have been considered important, and Mr. Doughty “said that he knew more than he durst speak.” Van der Donck finally succeeded in returning to New Amsterdam but died there in 1655, his widow married Hugh O’Neal of Maryland, and Mr. Doughty went with his daughter to Maryland and is said to have officiated as minister “at Patuxent,” where he was seen by the Dutch Commissioners who went to remonstrate about Colonel Utie’s action in the boundary dispute in 1659.473
After New Netherland was seized by the English, Mrs. O’Neal returned and claimed some property of which she appears to have been dispossessed.474 She recovered Yonkers, her first husband’s estate, but seems to have failed to recover a farm at Mespat — the one probably which her father is said to have given her at her marriage.
Mr. Doughty’s ministration in Maryland must have been brief, and his presence there in 1659 merely accidental. There were few ministers of any kind in Maryland at that time and little or no provision for the support of any, other than Roman Catholics.475 He was in New York in January, 1656, and in the same year was a “Minister and Preacher of ye Word” in Northampton County, Virginia. While there he married the widow Anne Eaton, who is thought to be the second wife of the Rev. Nathaniel Eaton of Harvard College who in 1639 “came in Nele’s barque to Virginia, where he married Anne Graves, daughter of Thomas Graves, a member of the Dorchester Church, who emigrated to Virginia and died of climatic influence, leaving his daughter a fair patrimony.”476 So it is stated in the Virginia Magazine, but Mr. Graves’s name does not appear in the Dorchester Church Records. The writer adds that Eaton became the assistant of Mr. John Rozier the minister of the parish, “but fled to England in 1646.”
In view of his proposed marriage, Mr. Doughty, 8 June, 1657, issued the following notice:
To all xtian people to whome this present wrightinge shall come.
Knowe yee that whereas there is a marriage to bee had and solemnized between me ffrancis Doughty of Northampton County in Virginia & Ann Eaton of ye same County, and yt the s’d ffrancis Doughty may by virtue of marriage haue or expect to haue an interest [in her estate I] do Disowne and discharge all right, to her estate, and to her children.477
If Doughty married Nathaniel Eaton’s widow in 1657, Mather is mistaken in saying that Eaton lived to the Restoration, conformed, and, as a beneficed clergyman became a persecutor of non-conformists.478
The collection of clerical dues was not easy in Northampton and Doughty soon removed to Rappahannock, where according to Bishop Meade he was the first minister of Sittingbourne parish. Here he remained until after the Restoration, not without some troubles as the following humble petition shows:
To the Wors’pll her Maties Justices for the County of Rappa. the Humble peticon of John Catlett & Humphrey Booth Sheweth, That Whereas yor petrs by Letters bearing date the 15th of Aprll, 1668, did make their humble addresse to our Honble Govr, Sr Wm. Berkeley, shewing that Mr. Francis Doughty, uppon our desire of Communicating in the Blessed Ordinance of the L’ds Supper, did w’thout any reason given to us [Besides that his conscience would not Suffer him Soe to do], advocate and Suspend us from p’ticipating in that holy Sacramt, to the great Scandall of yor petrs; and Further wee, yor petrs, informed his Honr of the sd Doughtie’s non-conformity & Scandalous liveing, uppon which our complts the Honble Govr & Counsell have ordered in case our complt bee grounded upon truth, that then his worshipll Cort bee empowered to putt out of the sd Doughty from being any longer Ministr in the p’ish of Sittingborue. All weh compl’ts wee are ready to prove, & not onely those before menconed, But likewise that hee, the s’d Doughty, did in the p’nce of this wors’pll Cort, impeach the Supremacy of his sacred Maty, the which & more (contrary to the Knowne Canons of the church of Engld), wee are heer Beady to make appeare.479
That Mr. Doughty was guilty of non-conformity and lack of respect for his Sacred Majesty is not unlikely, but it would require some better evidence to incline one to believe that he took to evil living in his old age.
In March, 1668–69, Mr. Doughty executed the following curious deed of gift:
To all Christian people to whom these shall come, greeting in our L’d God Everlasting, know yee that I, Frances Doughty, for and in consid. of the good will, affeccon and love that I beare unto my well Beloved wife Anne Doughty, and in consid. that I the sd Francis am shortly intended, God willing to Transport myself out of the Colony of Virginia into some other country and clymate that may prove more favorable to my aged, infirm & decayed Body than the sd Country of Virginia wherein I now Reside, Doste and for that my wife the sd Anne is unwilling to Depart the sd country, shee finding the same Best agreeing with her health. Besides her loathness and unwillingness to Bid Farewell to her more Deare & Beloved children, and to her Beloved kindred & Relacons, all or least most of them Residing in the sd Colony of Virginia and in the Neighboring provinces of Maryl’d, as also for Divine [diverse?] good causes & consid. mee at this pr’sent Especially moving, I Have given granted & confirmed . . . unto Richard Boughton of Charles county in the Province of May’ld . . . two hundred acres, lying upon Rappa. River in the sd Colony of Virginia . . . together w’th all Houses, etc.480
In the calendar of the New York Assizes to be held beginning the first Wednesday in October, 1669, stands:
Francis Doughtey Pl’t John Hicks, William Laurence &c Def’ts upon the suite & Request of Capt’a Underhill & Mr Laurence — By the ord’r of the Governo’r Ap’r 19: 1669.481
It is said that he or his executor won the suit which was for salary at Flushing some twenty years before.482
Mr. William Logan Rodman Gifford of St. Louis, Missouri, was elected a Corresponding Member.