A Stated Meeting of the Society was held at No. 25 Beacon Street, Boston, on Thursday, 28 January, 1909, at three o’clock in the afternoon, the President, Henry Lefavour, LL.D., in the chair.

    The records of the last Stated Meeting were read and approved.

    The Corresponding Secretary pro tempore reported that letters had been received from Mr. Ogden Codman of Lincoln and Mr. Morris Hicky Morgan of Cambridge accepting Resident Membership, and from the Hon. John Taggard Blodgett of Providence, Rhode Island, accepting Corresponding Membership.

    The name of Mr. Worthington C. Ford was transferred from the Roll of Corresponding Members to that of Resident Members, since he has resumed his residence in Massachusetts.

    Mr. Harold Murdock of Brookline, and Mr. William Lowell Putnam of Manchester, were elected Resident Members.

    On behalf of the Hon. John Taggard Blodgett, a Corresponding Member, Mr. Henry H. Edes communicated the following paper:


    On the 11th day of November, Old Style, 1620, in the cabin of the Mayflower there was signed a compact by the Pilgrims which has been characterized by Bancroft as “the birth of popular constitutional liberty,” and of which Governor Bradford thus speaks:

    I shall a litle returne backe and begine with a combination made by them before they came ashore, being ye first foundation of their governmente in this place; occasioned partly by the discontented and mutinous speeches that some of the strangers amongst them had let fall from them in the ship—That when they came a shore they would use their owne libertie; for none had power to comand them, the patente they had being for Virginia, and not for New-england, which belonged to an other Government, with which the Virginia Company had nothing to doe. And partly that shuch an acte by them done (this their condition considered) might be as firme as any patent, and in some respects more sure. The forme was as followeth.

    In ye name of God, Amen. We whose names are under-written, the loyall subjects of our dread soveraigne Lord, King James, by the grace of God, of Great Britaine, Franc, and Ireland king, defender of the faith, etc., haveing undertaken, for the glorie of God, and advancemente of the Christian faith, and honour of our king and countrie, a voyage to plant the first colonie in the Northerne parts of Virginia, doe by these presents solemnly and mutualy in the presence of God, and one of another, convenant and combine our selves togeather into a civill body politick, for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by vertue hearof to enacte, constitute, and frame such just and equall lawes, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meete and convenient for the generall good of the Colonie, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witnes whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cap-Codd ye 11. of November, in the year of the raigne of our soveraigne lord, King James, of England, France, and Ireland, the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fiftie fourth. Ano:Dom. 1620.483

    The prophecy of Bradford that this compact was “in some respects more sure” than any patent has been fully realized in our day, for with us it is accepted as a self-evident truth as expressed in the words of the Declaration of Independence, that all governments derive “their just powers from the consent of the governed.” But the statements contained in this compact were not the views commonly held in that age and were directly opposed to the doctrines inculcated by philosophers and widely entertained for many years to come. And it may not be an unprofitable employment briefly to consider some of the theories to which it was opposed, as well as brief extracts from the writings of some of the philosophers and statesmen by whom it was later supported.

    Thomas Hobbes, a royalist, the advocate of the so-called “Selfish School of Philosophy,” proceeded upon the theory that the natural relation of man to his fellow-man was a state of war; “as a selfish, ferocious animal he required the hand of despotism to keep him in check,” and all notions of right and wrong are made to depend upon views of self interest alone, thus basing the origin of civil government rather upon conquest than upon a voluntary social compact. In his Leviathan, published in 1651, he says:

    To this warre of every man against every man, this also is consequent; that nothing can be Unjust. The notions of Right and Wrong, Justice and Injustice have there no place. Where there is no common Power, there is no Law: where no Law, no Injustice. Force, and Fraud, are in warre the two Cardinall vertues. Justice, and Injustice are none of the Faculties neither of the Body, nor Mind. If they were, they might be in a man that were alone in the world, as well as his Senses, and Passions. They are Qualities, that relate to men in Society, not in Solitude. It is consequent also to the same condition, that there be no Propriety, no Dominion, no Mine and Thine distinct; but onely that to be every mans, that he can get; and for so long, as he can keep it. And thus much for the ill condition, which man by meer Nature is actually placed in; though with a possibility to come out of it, consisting partly in the Passions, partly in his Reason.484

    The opinion that any Monarch receiveth his Power by Covenant, that is to say on Condition, proceedeth from want of understanding this easie truth, that Covenants being but words, and breath, have no force to oblige, contain, constrain, or protect any man, but what it has from the publique Sword; that is, from the untyed hands of that Man, or Assembly of men that hath the Soveraignty, and whose actions are avouched by them all, and performed by the strength of them all, in him united. But when an Assembly of men is made Soveraigne; then no man imagineth any such Covenant to have passed in the Institution; for no man is so dull as to say, for example, the People of Rome, made a Covenant with the Romans, to hold the Soveraignty on such or such conditions; which not performed, the Romans might lawfully depose the Roman People. That men see not the reason to be alike in a Monarchy, and in a Popular Government, proceedeth from the ambition of some, that are kinder to the government of an Assembly, whereof they may hope to participate, than of Monarchy, which they despair to enjoy.485

    But the Rights, and Consequences of Soveraignty, are the same in both. His Power cannot, without his consent, be Transferred to another: He cannot Forfeit it: He cannot be Accused by any of his Subjects, of Injury: He cannot be Punished by them: He is Judge of what is necessary for Peace; and Judge of Doctrines: He is Sole Legislator; and Supreme Judge of Controversies; and of the Times, and Occasions of Warre, and Peace: to him it belongeth to choose Magistrates, Counsellours, Commanders, and all other Officers, and Ministers; and to determine of Rewards and Punishments, Honour, and Order.486

    A fourth opinion, repugnant to the nature of a Common-wealth, is this, That he that hath the Soveraign Power is subject to the Civill Lawes. It is true, that Soveraigns are all subject to the Lawes of Nature; because such lawes be Divine, and cannot by any man, or Common-wealth be abrogated. But to those Lawes which the Soveraign himselfe, that is, which the Common-wealth maketh, he is not subject. For to be subject to Lawes is to be subject to the Common-wealth, that is to the Soveraign Representative, that is to himselfe; which is not subjection, but freedome from the Lawes. Which errour, because it setteth the Lawes above the Soveraign, setteth also a Judge above him, and a Power to punish him; which is to make a new Soveraign; and again for the same reason a third, to punish the second; and so continually without end, to the Confusion, and Dissolution of the Common-wealth.487

    It is hardly necessary to indicate how opposed are such views to the teachings of the New Testament, nor how they ignore all the rights of man and base all human government upon supreme force.

    Sir Robert Filmer derived the origin of government from the Old Testament—from the grant of the earth first to Adam and later to Noah, and held that as by nature the authority of parents over their infant children was practically an absolute authority, in like manner the power of governments over their subjects was identical with that of the patriarchs over their descendants, and was absolute and unlimited. Some of his pamphlets were composed when Charles I and the Commons were contending for the supremacy, and inasmuch as the doctrine of the divine right of the King to rule of necessity implied the doctrine of the duty of passive obedience on the part of the subject, it is little wonder that the cause of the House of Stuart was based on the views he thus expressed and that in the reign of James II these doctrines became the political creed of the Stuarts and their adherents, and constituted the current divinity of the time. Thus Filmer says:

    The first government in the world was Monarchicall in the father of all flesh. Adam being commanded to multiply, and people the earth and to subdue it, and having dominion given him over all creatures, was thereby the Monarch of the whole world; none of his posterity had any right to possess any thing, but by his grant or permission, or by succession from him: the earth, saith the Psalmist, hath he given to the children of men: which shews the title comes from the fatherhood. There never was any such thing as an independent multitude, who at first had a naturall right to a community; this is but a fiction, or fancy of too many in these dayes, who please themselves in running after the opinions of Philosophers and Poets, to finde out such an originall of government, as might promise them some title to liberty, to the great scandall of Christianity, and bringing in of Atheisms, since a naturall freedoms of mankinde cannot be supposed without the deniall of the creation of Adam.488

    I cannot finde any one place or Text in the Bible, where any power or Commission is given to a people either to govern themselves, or to choose themselves governours, or to alter the manner of government at their pleasure; the power of government is setled and fixed by the Commandement of Honour thy Father; if there were a higher power then the fatherly, then this Commandement could not stand and bee observed: Whereas we read in Scripture of some actions of the people in setting up of Kings, further then to a naked declaration by a part of the people of their obedience such actions could not amount, since we finde no Commission they have to bestow any right, a true representation of the people to be made, is as impossible as for the whole people to govern; the names of an Aristocratie, a Democratie, a Commonweal, a State, or any other of like signification, are not to be met either in the Law or Gospell.489

    And again, he thus interprets the New Testament:

    But take the words in what sense soever you will, it is most evident, that Saint Peter in this place, takes no notice of any government or governours, but of a King and governours sent by him, but not by the people. And it is to be noted, that Saint Peter, and Saint Paul, the two chiefe of the Apostles, writ their Epistles at such time, when the name of a popular government, or of the power of the people of Rome was at least so much in shew and in name, that many do beleeve that notwithstanding the Emperours by strong hand, usurped a Military power; yet the government was for a long time in most things then in the Senate and people of Rome; but for all this, neither of the two Apostles take any notice of any such popular government; No, nor our Saviour himselfe, who divides all between God and Cæsar, and allows nothing that we can finde for the people.490

    Abhorrent and monstrous as these doctrines seem to us of to-day, yet the principles set forth in Filmer’s writings were so widely entertained that they were reprinted in 1679 and again in 1680, while Patriarcha, his chief book, was published in 1680, many years after the death of the author and near the close of the reign and of the life of Charles II, and was again republished in 1685 in the first year of the reign of James II.491

    We now pass to a brief consideration of a few passages from the writings of two of the men who refuted the contention that civil government rested upon force and that kings ruled by divine right, and, aided doubtless by the oppressions of that monarch, established the basis of government as it was established in the Mayflower compact as resting upon the voluntary consent of the people to laws made for the general good, and as it has now been established in the fundamental law of the republic.

    Of Algernon Sidney, John Quincy Adams thus writes:

    Sidney, though not included in the number of the regicides, was one of the main pillars of the republican cause, and was personally obnoxious to Charles the second, for some occasional offensive remarks that he had recently made—especially for two Latin lines that he had written in the album of the royal library at Copenhagen:

    Manus haec inimica tyrannis

    Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem.

    This hand, the rule of tyrants to oppose

    Seeks with the sword fair freedom’s soft repose.

    The second of which lines—

    Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem—

    was adopted by the founders of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, as the motto to the arms of the State; a motto lasting as the Commonwealth herself, and ever admonishing her sons that the enjoyment of quiet freedom is the only lawful motive for drawing the sword to shed blood in resistance of tyranny, and signally marking at the same time their approbation of this sublime sentiment and their profound veneration for the character of Algernon Sidney.492

    Forty-five years after the death of Filmer there was published, in 1698, Sidney’s Discourses on Government, which was written for the express purpose of refuting the writings of Filmer. In that work he thus contends:

    But if these opinions comprehend an extravagancy of wickedness and madness, that was not known among men, till some of these wretches presumed to attempt the increase of that corruption under which mankind groans, by adding fuel to the worst of all vices; we may safely return to our propositions, that, God having established no such authority as our author fancies, nations are left to the use of their own judgment, in making provision for their own welfare; that there is no lawful magistrate over any of them, but such as they have set up; that in creating them, they do not seek the advantage of their magistrate but their own: and having found that an absolute power over the people is a burden, which no man can bear; and that no wise or good man ever desired it; from thence conclude, that it is not good for any to have it, nor just for any to affect it, though it were personally good for himself; because he is not exalted to seek his own good, but that of the public.493

    By this means every number of men, agreeing together, and framing a society, became a complete body, having all power in themselves over themselves, subject to no other human law than their own. All those that compose the society, being equally free to enter into it or not, no man could have any prerogative above others, unless it were granted by the consent of the whole; and nothing obliging them to enter into this society, but the consideration of their own good; that good, or the opinion of it, must have been the rule, motive, and end of all that they did ordain. It is lawful therefore for any such bodies to set up one or a few men to govern them, or to retain the power in themselves; and he or they who are set up, having no other power but what is conferred upon them by that multitude, whether great or small, are truly by them made what they are; and by the law of their own creation, are to exercise those powers according to the proportion, and to the ends for which they were given.494

    . . . that this equality of right, and exemption from the domination of any other is called liberty: that he, who enjoys it, cannot be deprived of it, unless by his own consent, or by force: that no man can force a multitude; or, if he did, it could confer no right upon him: that a multitude, consenting to be governed by one man, doth confer upon him the power of governing them; the powers therefore that he has, are from them; and they who have all in themselves can receive nothing from him, who has no more than every one of them till they do invest him with it.495

    How deeply these views of Filmer had taken root further appears when we consider the writings of John Locke, the author of the Essay concerning Human Understanding and the framer of the Fundamental Constitutions for the Carolinas, who published in 1690, seven years after Sidney’s death, his Two Treatises of Government, on the title-page of one of which he states that “the false principles and foundation of Sir Robert Filmer and his followers are detected and overthrown.” Locke writes:

    The natural liberty of man is to be free from any superior power on earth, and not to be under the will or legislative authority of man, but to have only the law of nature for his rule. The liberty of man, in society, is to be under no other legislative power, but that established, by consent, in the commonwealth; nor under the dominion of any will, or restraint of any law, but what that legislative shall enact, according to the trust put in it. Freedom then is not what sir Robert Filmer tells us, O. A. 55. “a liberty for every one to do what he lists, to live as he pleases, and not to be tied by any laws:” but freedom of men under government is, to have a standing rule to live by, common to every one of that society, and made by the legislative power erected in it; a liberty to follow my own will in all things, where the rule prescribes not; and not to be subject to the inconstant, uncertain, unknown, arbitrary will of another man: as freedom of nature is, to be under no other restraint but the law of nature.496

    Hence it is evident, that absolute monarchy, which by some men is counted the only government in the world, is indeed inconsistent with civil society, and so can be no form of civil government at all: for the end of civil society being to avoid and remedy these inconveniences of the state of nature, which necessarily follow from every man being judge in his own case, by setting up a known authority, to which every one of that society may appeal upon any injury received, or controversy that may arise, and which every one of the society ought to obey; wherever any persons are, who have not such an authority to appeal to, for the decision of any difference between them, there those persons are still in the state of nature; and so is every absolute prince, in respect of those who are under his dominion.497

    Men being, as has been said, by nature all free, equal, and independent, no one can be put out of this estate, and subjected to the political power of another, without his own consent. The only way whereby any one divests himself of his natural liberty, and puts on the bonds of civil society, is by agreeing with other men to join and unite into a community, for their comfortable, safe, and peaceable living one amongst another, in a secure enjoyment of their properties, and a greater security against any that are not of it. This any number of men may do, because it injures not the freedom of the rest; they are left as they were in the liberty of the state of nature. When any number of men have so consented to make one community or government, they are thereby presently incorporated, and make one body politic, wherein the majority have a right to act and conclude the rest.498

    Whosoever therefore out of a state of nature unite into a community, must be understood to give up all the power necessary to the ends for which they unite into society, to the majority of the community, unless they expressly agreed in any number greater than the majority. And this is done by barely agreeing to unite into one political society, which is all the compact that is, or needs be, between the individuals that enter into, or make up a commonwealth. And thus that which begins and actually constitutes any political society, is nothing but the consent of any number of freemen capable of a majority, to unite and incorporate into such a society. And this is that, and that only, which did or could give beginning to any lawful government in the world.499

    The principles advocated by Sidney and by Locke constitute the foundation of the Declaration of Independence, and in connection with the writings of Montesquieu and Rousseau that of the Constitution of the United States.

    In conclusion it may be observed that the compact made on the Mayflower is of peculiar interest also because of its counterpart entered into upon the banks of the Moshassuck, in the year 1637, by the founders of the Providence Plantation, in these words:

    We whose names are hereunder desirous to inhabitt in the towne of prouidence do promise to subject ourselves in actiue or passiue obedience to all such orders or agreements as shall be made for publick good of or body in an orderly way by the maior consent of the present Inhabitants maisters of families Incorporated together into a towne fellowship and others whome they shall admitt unto them only in ciuill things.500

    “So live the fathers in their sons,

    Their sturdy faith be ours,

    And ours the love that overruns

    Its rocky strength with flowers.

    The Pilgrim’s wild and wintry day

    Its shadow round us draws;

    The Mayflower of his stormy bay

    Our Freedom’s struggling cause.”501

    On behalf of the Hon. Horace Davis, a Corresponding Member, Mr. Andrew McF. Davis read the following paper:


    Dr. Benjamin Gott was a physician of some prominence in Marlboro, Massachusetts, in the middle of the eighteenth century. His father, John Gott, a well-to-do tanner of Wenham, had three sons; the elder two he intended should continue his business, while Benjamin, the youngest, was indentured to Dr. Samuel Wallis of Ipswich to learn the “art and mysteries” of the physician’s profession. Benjamin was born March 13, 1705–06, and was probably about thirteen or fourteen years old at the beginning of his apprenticeship. His father died in 1722 during his indenture, and in his will charged his elder sons to “find him with good and sufficient clothing during the time he is to live with Dr. Wallis as may appear by his indenture” and “pay him £200 in silver money or in good bills of credit when he arrives at the age of twenty-one years.”

    Here I lose sight of the boy for six years. He probably finished his term with Dr. Wallis, received his two hundred pounds, moved west to Marlboro, which even in 1727 was well out towards the wilderness, and started in the practice of medicine.

    On January 20, 1728, being only twenty-two, he married Sarah, daughter of the Rev. Robert Breck of Marlboro. She was only sixteen or seventeen years old, when this young couple launched out into life on their own account. The Rev. Robert Breck, a descendant of Edward Breck of Dorchester, graduated from Harvard College in 1700 and was a clergyman of some note in his day. His wife, Elizabeth, was the daughter of Simon Wainwright of Haverhill, who was killed by Indians in 1708. These Wainwrights form a remarkable family distinguished for their wealth, their military spirit, and the extraordinary number of their college-bred men.

    Three years later, on January 6, 1731, the Rev. Mr. Breck died leaving to Dr. Gott “two acres of land as recompense for instructing my son Robert in the rules of physic.” This Robert Breck, Junior, born July 25, 1713, graduated at Harvard College in 1730, preached in Springfield in 1734, was ordained on January 26, 1736, and was settled over the Springfield parish where he gained considerable distinction as a preacher. It does not appear that he ever practised medicine as a profession, but it was not uncommon in those early days for a minister to acquire some technical knowledge of the healing art, so that he could care for the bodily ailments of his people, as well as their spiritual needs, in case his field of work fell in one of the small outlying towns, just as the missionaries in China to-day are often practising physicians.

    The Rev. Mr. Breck’s will also left to Dr. Gott “ten pounds worth of books out of my library,” which will account for the large number of theological works in the inventory of Dr. Gott’s library.502

    It is worthy of note here that a younger son of Mr. Breck, Samuel, born May 17, 1723, graduated at Harvard College in 1742, also studied medicine, perhaps with Dr. Gott, and settled in Worcester in 1743, in the practice of his profession. Dr. Gott’s oldest son Benjamin, too, became a physician and practised in Brookfield, while Anna, daughter of Dr. Gott, married Dr. Samuel Brigham, a physician of Marlboro, and her son, Samuel Brigham, practised medicine in Boylston. Medicine certainly ran in the family.

    Returning to Dr. Gott, on January 8, 1733–34, a young man named Hollister Baker, about sixteen years old, was apprenticed to him, till he should come of age, “to learn his art, trade or mystery.” Baker’s father had disappeared and his guardian apprenticed him to Dr. Gott, in the manner of that time, to be made a doctor. Things moved fast in those days. Dr. Gott, only twenty-eight years old, was married, with three children—and more coming; already one student, a graduate of Harvard, had passed through his tuition and gone out into the world, and another lad had entered his office under a five years’ apprenticeship. Baker’s original indenture lies before me and is worth preserving, as a sample of the ways of medical education in 1734. It runs as follows:

    This Indenture Witnesseth, That Hollister Baker a minor aged about sixteen son of Mr. Ebenr Baker late of Marlborough in the County of Middlesex Gent. Deceased of his own free Will and Accord, and with the Consent of Benja Wood of Marlborough in ye County aforesaid his Guardian doth Put and Bind himself to be an Apprentice unto Benja Gott of Marlboro in ye County aforesaid Physcician to learn his Art, Trade or Mystery, and with him the said Benja Gott after the manner of an Apprentice, to Dwell and Serve from the Day of the Date hereof, for and during the full and just Term of five Years and four months next ensuing, and fully to be Compleat and Ended. During all which said Term, the said Apprentice his said Master and Mistress honestly and faithfully shall Serve, so long as his Master lives of said Term,503 their Secrets keep Close their lawful and reasonable Commands every where gladly Do and Perform; Damage to his said Master and Mistress he shall not wilfully Do, his Masters Goods he shall not Waste, Embezel, Purloine or Lend unto others, nor suffer the same to be wasted or purloined; but to his power shall forthwith Discover, and make Known the same unto his said Master or Mistress. Taverns nor Alehouses he shall not frequent; at Cards, Dice, or any other unlawful Game he shall not Play; Fornication he shall not Commit, nor Matrimony Contract with any Person, during said Term: From his Masters Service he shall not at any time unlawfully Absent himself But in all things as a good, honest and faithful Servant and Apprentice, shall bear and behave himself towards his said Master and Mistress during the full Term of five Years and four months Commencing as aforesaid.

    And the Said Benja Gott for himself Doth Covenant Promise, Grant and Agree unto, and with him said Apprentice in Manner and Form following, that is to say, That he will teach the said Apprentice, or cause him to be Taught by the best Ways and Means that he may or can, the Trade, Art or Mystery of a Physcician according to his own best skil and judgm’t (if said Apprentice be capable to learn) and will Find and Provide for and unto said Apprentice, good and sufficient meat Drink washing and lodging During said Term both in sickness and in health—his Mother all said Term finding said apprentice all his Cloathing of all sorts fitting for an Apprentice during said Term; and at the End of said Term, to dismiss said Apprentice with Good skill in arithmetick Lattin and also in the Greek through ye Greek Grammer.

    In Testimony Whereof, The said Parties to these present Indentures have interchangeably set their Hands and Seals, the Eighth Day of January—In the seventh Year of the Reign of Our Sovereign Lord George ye second by the Grace of God, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland; And in the Year of Our Lord, One Thousand Seven Hundred and thirty three four—

    Signed, Sealed and Delivered

    in Presence of

    Hollister Baker

    John Mead

    Benja Wood

    Elisabeth Woods

    Benja Gott


    Marlborough June 15 1734

    Memorandum whereas I the subscriber Father to the said Holister Baker within mentioned being absent for about two years whereupon a credible Report was abroad of my Death &c. upon the said Report although false the said minor was Taken Care of as within written unto the said within written Indenture I consent and am well satisfied and Contented that the same be fullfilled by All parties as aforesaid In witness thereof I here set my hand and seal the Day and Year first above written.

    In Presence of

    Ebenr Baker

    Benja Wood

    John McCleave

    Baker’s father, it will be noticed, turned up before the close of the indenture and consented to its terms. What became of Hollister Baker I have been unable to ascertain.504

    Returning to the instrument, Baker was bound with Dr. Gott “to dwell and serve.” He agrees “his master and mistress honestly and faithfully to serve,” not his master alone, but his mistress too. “Their reasonable commands he will everywhere gladly do and perform, and in all things as a good, honest and faithful servant and apprentice will bear and behave himself.”

    In short, his mother was to furnish his clothes and Dr. Gott his board and lodging and medical tuition, and in return he was to work his passage to his profession by serving the Doctor and Mrs. Gott for five years and four months, doing their chores, household and professional. Doctor Gott had served Dr. Wallis in the same way, and it was the custom of the day. There was no other method for a boy of ordinary means to enter the profession. The first medical school on the continent, that of Philadelphia, was not founded till 1765,505 and even then a boy was required to pass one year in a doctor’s office as an apprentice.

    How I should like to see a letter from Baker describing his life. I imagine Dr. Gott lived in a modest house in the village with his office in one of the front rooms, where he kept his instruments—what few he had—his little library and some store of medicines, for there could hardly have been a pharmacy in the small town. So he would have to keep on hand some stock of things he most needed, such as opium, antimony, Peruvian bark, mercury, nitre, sulphur, ipecac, and probably some collection of the native remedies in general use, such as elecampane, elder, yellow dock, slippery elm, anise, saffron, snake-root, and the rest, and among these emblems of his future calling, Baker very likely passed a good share of his time.

    He would come down from his plain quarters in the attic early in the morning and start the fire while Mrs. Gott attended to the children, then he would go out and look after the Doctor’s horse. Before breakfast would come family prayers, when, according to tradition, the Doctor used to read from his Latin Bible. After breakfast, he would saddle the Doctor’s horse and bring him round to the front door, when his master would throw the saddle bags over his back, stuffed with such medicines or instruments as the morning’s work required, and ride away to his patients. Then perhaps Hollister would sit down to his “arithmetick, Lattin and Greek grammer,” possibly dipping into some of the medical books which adorned the Doctor’s shelves.

    After a midday dinner, perhaps the Doctor would take him to visit some patient in the village or send him on the old mare with remedies to some distant invalid, whom his master was unable to attend in person. And when the day’s work was done, the Doctor would look after the boy’s studies and impart to him some knowledge of that “art, trade and mystery,” which the boy was anxious to grasp. If the Doctor was kind and his mistress gentle, the lad’s life might be very pleasant and his father’s confirmation of the indenture seems to imply it was so. I wonder what were his relations to the boys and girls of the village. Of course, he met them at church; did he belong to the singing-school? Did they go out together huckleberrying; did he sometimes tempt the wary trout from his hole; or fish through a hole in the ice for the impulsive pickerel?

    What a contrast the life of this lonely boy bears to the medical student of to-day, plunged in the whirl of city life, surrounded by the activities of a great class, enjoying the mysteries and sociabilities of a Greek letter fraternity, working in a richly endowed laboratory, under the guidance of an army of distinguished scientists, and all this housed in a marble palace, such as poor Baker never dreamed of. It is a far cry from all this splendor of modern education to that solitary boy serving his master and mistress under a five-year indenture for his board, lodging, and tuition. But the old way had its offsets, for it brought him very close to his master’s care and attention, and if the Doctor was a kind and sympathetic teacher, he could do wonders to guide and stimulate the struggling pupil.

    Soon after the close of Baker’s indenture, Mrs. Gott died, in 1740, leaving six young children. The Doctor married again, but his second wife died in 1745, leaving another infant on his hands. His own career was drawing to a close, and in 1751 he passed away in the prime of life, being only forty-five years old.

    He died intestate, but the inventory of his administrators shows a handsome estate:

    Personal property


    Real estate at home


    “ “ “ Housatonnuk


    Book debts due


    The “Book debts” I fear were hopeless, but his library appears not to be included in the above inventory. Its pecuniary value was not large, but the remarkable number of historical and classical books in this collection—Horace, Virgil, Ovid, Cicero, and others—indicates a literary culture unusual in those days.

    He left a host of mourning friends, some of whom testified to their sorrow by the following quaint obituary notice, published in the Boston News-Letter of August 1, 1751:

    Marlborough, July 27. 1751

    On the 25th deceased, and this Day was decently interr’d, Dr. Benjamin Gott, a learned and useful Physician and Surgeon: The Loss of this Gentleman is the more bewail’d in these Parts, as he was not only a Lover of Learning and learned Men, and very hospitable and generous; but as he was peculiarly faithful to his Patients, moderate in his Demands, and charitable to the Poor; a Character very imitable by all in the Faculty; and was taken off in the very Meridian of Life, being but in the 46th Year of his Age.

    This memorial has about it the flavor of genuine feeling. Marlboro had indeed lost a faithful citizen and a good man.

    Mr. William C. Lane exhibited a manuscript volume recently acquired by Harvard College and spoke as follows:

    I have brought, for inspection by members of the Society, a little leather-covered blank-book, measuring six by three and three-quarters inches, nearly all of the pages of which are occupied by the close and somewhat difficult handwriting af Ebenezer Turell, of the Harvard Class of 1721. The book was recently acquired by the Harvard Library, but nothing can be learned in regard to its history. On one fly-leaf is the inscription “E. Turelli Liber” and on another the name of Andrew E. Thayer.

    Ebenezer Turell, by whom the book was doubtless written, graduated from College in 1721, and seems to have spent the next two or three years in Cambridge during his preparation for the ministry. He was invited to settle in Medford June 17, 1724, and was ordained over the church there November 25, 1724. His pastorate extended over a period of a little more than fifty-four years, his death occurring December 5, 1778. During the last four years of his life he had a colleague. His sister, Lydia, married Cornelius Thayer, which may account for the presence of the second name on the fly-leaf; but I have not identified its owner.

    Beginning at one end of the volume, the first twenty-seven leaves are devoted to the thirteen successive numbers of what seems to have been a student periodical circulated in manuscript, at weekly or semi-weekly intervals, and modelled after Addison’s Spectator. It is the earliest college production of the kind of which I have any information, and is entitled the “Telltale.” The dates of the thirteen numbers extend from Saturday, September 9, to Wednesday, November 1, 1721. On the page opposite the beginning, lines from Virgil’s Eclogues (II. 17), and from Ovid’s Metamorphoses (II. 127), are inscribed:

    O formose Puer, nimium ne crede colori.

    Parce Puer stimulis, et fortius utere loris.

    By Theophilus Evedropper.

    It must be admitted that, on the whole, the “Telltale” is decidedly dry reading, and one is disappointed not to find in it more interesting glimpses of contemporary college life. The substance of the successive numbers is given below, partly in abstract and partly by direct quotation.

    Some account of a Paper call’d the Telltale begun in Colledge Sept 1721     By &c

    This paper was Entitl’d the



    Criticisms on the Conversation & Beheavour

    of Schollars to promote right reasoning &

    good manner.

    No 1. Saturday Sept 9th 1721

    The Preface.

    Tis a common observation, he yt remarks ye Folly of others has his own severly remark’d upon. However abjiciendus Timor quoties urget necessitas. The shamfull impertinences & monstrous inconsistencies yt daily perplex us must have their career obstructed by some seasonable animadversions wch (Divino anuente numine) shall be essay’d on the following Saturdays. Perhaps your enquiries will run more after my Person than the reason of my Discourses. But take this Caution. I am so envelop’d with clouds & vizards yt the most piercing eye can[not] distinguish me from Stoughton’s Hall. In this I am happy. What I intend is for the benefit of the Society & tho in some passages I may seem pritty facetious (wch erroneously call light & vain) It must be attributed to my natural constitution. I hope ther’s no Gentleman (I know ther’s none of worth) will be my antagonist in so laudable an undertaking. But if any man will appear so vain & foolish I defy his strength & Laugh att his attempt. I would propose and desire ye Gentlemen of Witt & good Sense (of whom we have a considerable number) would unite in the Servasable affair & assume their rights in the other 5 Days. The time yt would be taken up in this matter would not amount to above an hour in a week, & yet how great the advantage!

    Sign’d Telltale

    This Preface was left upon a pair of Stairs & Taken up by Somebody read & a new Superscription put to it wch occasion’d a letter from the Telltale to J L to whom the preface was Directed as follows—

    Sep. 11

    Sir After the greatest respects paid to your excellent self I would humbly inform you that the Telltale Saturday Last was by some (too curious Person) open’d & read & a new covering & superscription adjoin’d. This Scrip I suppose will come under ye same or a worse Fate. Ther’s ground to Fear these weekly remarks won’t reach your Pedestal without a better way of conveighance then is already found out. however I must make up for this till such a time as there be one. If you have any inclination for an epistolary correspondence with me you may deposit your Letters in that Famous tree call’d the Pliable Crotch on Monday Ev’ning. Whether you are thus dispos’d or no please to indicate by a line or two. Perhaps in time you may come to know who I am when like the Sun you send forth your swift & scattering Ray’s dispersing those Clouds yt Invelop’d me & Breaking the Vizards yt obfuscate me.

    But for the present Farewell

    Yrs Telltale

    Never pretend to know me by my writing.

    Upon this Mr J L left a Letter for the Telltale in ye noted Tree to this Purpose.

    To the worthy Gentleman whose Seal is the resemblance of Beacon Hill.

    J. L. with elaborate protestations of gratitude, etc., declares that until a better “conveighance” is found he cannot be absolutely sure that all he receives is from the same hand. He therefore desists from writing until he is certified of this.

    To this the Telltale replied that, so far as he could learn the letter that J. L. had received was indeed his own and that it had been “conveigh’d with that Secrecy as not to expose us.” The first half of this letter is occupied with high-flown expressions in which references to quills plucked from sweet Gabriel’s wing, the Cærulean Plains, Phoebus in his Meridian Glare, and Apollo’s flaming Charriots are happily mingled, but which seem not to advance the plot of the story, if plot there may be said to be.

    No. 2, Saturday, September 16, 1721, is headed with a Greek and a Latin motto after the manner of the English periodicals and contains a short disquisition on Conversation.

    No. 3, Saturday, September 23, has for its subject Detraction, two letters from correspondents being given with introductory and supplementary remarks by Telltale.

    At the close he adds:

    Just before writing this Paper the Telltale thôt it convenient that he should be known to J L wch would be preventive of many enquiries & inconveniences.

    No. 4, Wednesday, September 27, recounts a dream in which the writer meets a number of characters disputing of various subjects. Two fellows were quarrelling about Mrs. Kate, one contending that she was more beautiful than Venus, the other that she was an antidote against Matrimony. Two other persons resembling pickled Cucumbers were chattering upon themes of Predestination and Foreknowledge, which they understood as much about as they did of the Gregorian accounts. He next beheld four Fellows, with a Fury like that of Hercules in the midst of his enemies, pushing and shoving one another. One of these on being asked declared that two Men whom he mentioned said the steeple of the New Brick was not high enow. Two learned Physicians then appeared each bringing in a demonstration “the one proving that Transplanting the Small Pox was the safest Method, the other yt it was the worst & most Pernitious.” Then a company playing at “push pinn” for a wager was seen, but while they were disputing because one wished to change his Pinn claiming that its point was not so sharp as that of his mates, the writer awoke. He explains that he issues his paper on Wednesday instead of waiting till Saturday. “When ’tis my Fate, he says, to wander in the Land of forgetfullness & light of any thing worthy yr Perusal I shall account it a Duty & Honour to communicate to you.”

    No. 5, Saturday, September 30, contains a vigorous attack on what would seem to be a rival sheet, “The Censure or Muster Roll.”

    In No. 6 (misnumbered 7), Wednesday, October 4, 1721, the writer describes a dream and the scenes in which he seems to find himself. With an invisible being, he conducts a dialogue in verse, the last couplet of which is:

    The only Reason why youre, here conveyd

    Is to Behold the Faults in Dress Display’d.

    The paper proceeds as follows:

    Imediately I beheld 6 youths Springing up from the Ground one after another wch I shall very briefly Discrib’d. The 1st was a Person of a very Dark & swarthy complexion in a Slovenly Dress with 7 patches & 5 sparks on his Face The 2d appear’d with a Greesy Coat & orange colour’d Hair powdr’d to the Life.

    The 3d had a torn Gown & was beautify’d with a Paper Neckloth The 4th was drest in a Silver button Coat, homspun Jacket & britches Yarn Stockings & Tatter’d Shoes—The 5th had his Head adorn’d with a horse Hair Periwigg with a Velvet Bag att ye Bottom. The 6th came up with a pretty handsome sute of Cloaths, four Brass rings & 2 Pair of Pewter Buttons. No sooner had all the Persons enter’d the Stage but they finger’d those Parts of their Dress now discrib’d after a most ridiculous Manner. But whilst I was making very particular Observations on them some loud & unusual Noise beat an alarm on the Drum of my Ear (wch rousing my Drowsy Spirits) wak’d me.


    Be it known to all Gentlemen who do me the honour to Transcribe my Papers that unless they transcribe them Verbatim (faults & all) their Liberty shall be retrench’d & they severly animadverted upon

    Sign’d Telltale.

    No. 7, Saturday, October 7, 1721, contains remarks on Flattery.

    No. 8 Wednesday Oc 11–1721.

    The Gods avert such plagues from Righteous men.

    There [are] a number of Persons in Colledge who delight in nothing so much as in doing Mischief. This is what they call clean, showing their Parts &c. The great Number of these Persons adds to the Vexation. They are of very different inclinations & each of ym has his particular Art wherin he excells. I was t’other Day in Company with some of them who go by the Name of Chair Lifters. These Cowards attack you while you are sitting in a Chair (a most defenceless Posture) flinging you to the Ground with Great Violence. For wch Sometimes you[r] Head, arms and Posteriors curse them a fort night after. . . . There a[re] Divers other Troblesome Fellows of other Species . . . as rappers, clappers, Trippers, nippers, Thigh Duffers, Stroakers, Pokers, &c all of them when I have opportunity shall be satyrically animadverted upon.”

    A letter follows dated “Colledge Yard,” mentioning four other species of clean fellows.

    No. 9, Saturday, October 14, 1721, contains remarks on disputing and argument.

    The remaining numbers are occupied in part with an account of the Telltale or Spy Club, which I suppose to have existed only in the imagination of the writer.

    At the close of No. 10, October 18, is the following advertisement:

    Taken upon Monday the 24 of Sept near the N W Corner of Harvard Colledge, the chief internal ornament of an asses Head The furniture deeply branded in several Places with these Letter (T F) if ye owner think them worth coming for he may have them without further charges of the Colledge Scavenger.

    In No. 11, October 21, is found the following passage:

    Gentlemen. I would inform you yt just before I left you I found out several Clubbs in Colledge wch I tho’t properly fell under your animadversions—but had not opportunity to mention them. I think Now therefore my Duty by Epistle to inform you of ym. I Discribe one to you att this Time viz The Mock Club. This Club consist of a Number of Persons Rawbon’d humpback’d & Monophthalmic, founded by one Biter a crazy old fellar in 1719. This Fellow was depriv’d of 12 Teeth. If any dispute the matter of Fact let Isaac Bobbin (for that [was] his name) open his mouth. This Club meets on Saturdayes & the first thing that has been done in [it] of late in their sessions is to read over the Telltale carrying on a Scene wherin is acted our honorable President Mr Evedropper & all the rest of the Spy Club Ordine quisque sua. This I can Swear I heard one of them say was done to revive Shakespear. The G——forbid such Projects taking effect. These Monophthalmoi have several Factors in Colledge whom they secretly employ to inform the Schollars that they themselves are bloody sly Fellows and that keeping one Eye shut is an Infallable characteristic of a Witt. If you Excuse this my Letter you shall receve an Account of some others shortly.

    From my Grotto I subscribe

    my Self yours for ever

    not Headpeice but Sylvanus


    Next Week I intend to give you a shortt account of the Telltale alias Spy Club—wch consists of these Six members

    • Telltale
    • Blablonge
    • Sharpsights
    • Courage
    • Intelligence
    • Quick

    No. 12, Saturday, October 28, 1721, is devoted to a statement of the rules of the Club, but on account of the present faintness of the writing, they are difficult to decipher completely. It may be learned, however, that the Club consisted of six members, was to meet monthly, and had six officers—a president or moderator, two judges, a clerk, a reader, and a treasurer; also that all the members of the Club were to assume a nickname by which they were to be called within the Club. The writer continues:

    I shall now conclude this Paper with a list of those, who have formerly been or are now Present Members of the Club together with the Offices they have sustain’d or do sustain. Those which have (O) before them are old members yt are gone off the Others are the Present Members

    • O Headpeice
    • President
    • O Right
    • Judge
    • Telltale
    • President
    • O Brains
    • Judge
    • Volubility
    • Reader
    • Blablonge
    • Judge
    • Sharpsights.
    • Judge
    • O Carfull
    • Treasurer
    • Intelligence
    • Reader
    • Quick
    • Clerk
    • Courage
    • Treasurer

    NB. Tho’ you may not see the Benefit of this Paper at Present yet some time hence you’ll find it to be a Key or explana to our Saturday’s Negotiations.

    Signd Telltale.

    The last number, November 1, seems to contain remarks on the art of expression by gesture, and finishes with a letter from one “W. Faction,” addressed to the Telltale and begging him to desist from further composition.

    Beginning at the other end of the volume, the first fourteen pages are taken up with an “Argumentive dialogue concerning inoculation between Dr. Hurry and Mr. Waitfort,” which closes with the inscription, “Compos’d about three weeks before I was inoculated.”

    Theres none but Cowards fear ye Launce,

    Heroes receive ye Wound

    With rapturous joy they Skip & Dance,

    While others hugg ye Ground.

    It is interesting to note, in connection with this, the following entry in the Medford Church records, April 26, 1730: “Mr. Turrell preached a sensible and timely discourse in favor of inoculation for the small-pox.”

    The “Dialogue on Inoculation” is followed by “An account of a Society in Har: Colledge,” which proceeds as follows:

    After several Essays to bring Something on foot yt might as well profit as Divert, We att lenght so far agreed in October, 1722, as to draw up a Scheme of Proposalls, the Summ of wch we will now present you withall.

    1. That att certain Times as the Majority of the Subscribers present shall agree we will convene.

    2. We will agree to whatsoever ye Majority of the Subscribers shall vote.

    3. That a Moderator shall be chosen once a month to regulate the affairs of the Society.

    4. That a Discourse of about Twenty minuits be made att every Meeting by one of the Society on any Subject he pleaseth.

    5. That any Difficulty may be propos’d to the Company & when propos’d, the company shall Deliver their Thôts upon It.

    6. That there be a Disputation on Two or more questions att every Meeting, one part of the Company holding the Affirmative, the other the Negative part of ye Question.

    7. That whatsoever any of us shall meet with in our readings & Contemplations on any Subject that he can fairly think will be for the advancement of the Society, he shall communicate.

    8. That we will be often Writing Epistles to the Society for the advancing Learning & the Methods of Pursuing it.

    9. That if we see or hear of any Extraordinary Book, we will give ye best account we can of it to ye Society.

    10. That the Moderator, upon resigning his office, shall make a speech to the Society concerning that office.

    The Subscribers assented to the forgoing articles

    • N Rogers.
    • C Chauncey.
    • E Pemberton.
    • E Turell.
    • S Marshall.
    • J Taylor.
    • Oliver Peabody.
    • John Lowell
    • Isaac Greenwood
    • N Hunting
    • S White
    • N Leonard
    • J Davenport
    • F Jerald

    These articles have been comply’d with, & in a great measure answer’d the Intention of them.

    To prove wch we need only give you a brief Summary of our Records.

    N R has read us 3 Lectures

    1. 1 Upon the Pleasures of Piety
    2. 2 Upon Virtue naturally leading to our happiness
    3. 3 Upon Justification

    E P has read us 3 Lectures

    1. 1 On a Future State
    2. 2 On the Benefitt of Religion
    3. 3 On the Perfection of God’s Knowledge

    E T has read us 2 Lectures

    1. 1 Upon Light, a Phisico-Theological Discourse
    2. 2 Upon Providence.

    S. M. read us 1 Lecture

    • On God’s Wisdom & Power

    J T has read us 3 Lectures

    1. 1 Upon the Unity of ye Chh
    2. 2 Upon Scism
    3. 3 Upon the Shame & punishmt of Sin

    J L has read us 4 Lectures

    • Upon the Usfullness of Learning
    • Upon Transubstantiation & Predestination
    • Upon Prejudice
    • Upon the Majesty of God & his [ ]

    O P read us one Lecture

    • Upon the fear of God.

    I G read us one Lecture

    • On the Progress of Philosophy

    N H read us one Lecture

    • on Conversation

    J D read us one Lecture

    • on Regeneration

    N L read us one Lecture

    • Showing our Obligation to Obedience

    Lectures 21

    The questions yt have been Discussed are these—

    1. 1 Whether Society’s of Xtians are Oblig’d to pray together Morn & Eve
    2. 2 Whether the Souls of Brutes are Immortall?
    3. 3 Whether humane Souls are Equal
    4. 4 Whether Infants are contain’d in Parvo in semine Marium?
    5. 5 Whether sight is made by ye reception of Species?
    6. 6 Whether sins of Ignorance will be imputed.
    7. 7 Whether the happiness of Heaven will be progressive.
    8. 8 Whether Heathens can be Sav’d according to the Terms of ye Gospel.
    9. 9 Whether the Popish Uncton mention’d as they say in James is now to be Used
    10. 10 Whether the world will be anihilatd or only refined?
    11. 11 Whether it be Fornication to lye with ones Sweetheart (after Contraction) before marraige?
    12. 12 Whether Christ or Homodeus suffer’d?
    13. 13 Whether Forms of Prayer should be usd in Publick?
    14. 14 Whether we are oblig’d to bow att ye Name of Jesus?
    15. 15 Whether a Preacher yt has an Universall [?] call be oblig’d to accept?
    16. 16 Whether any Sin is Unpardonable
    17. 17 Whether there be any Infallable Judge of Controversies
    18. 18 Whether Infants can be saved according to the Terms of ye Gospel
    19. 19 Whether a Deathbed repentance can be available according to ye Terms of ye Gospel
    20. 20 Whether there be any Standard of Truth
    21. 21 When may a Man be said to Lye
    22. 22 When may a Man be said to Extort
    23. 23 Whether the Term of Mans Life be immoveably fixt

    Besides these Questions and the Lectures, we have had divers Collections of Letters bro’t in & read for the benefitt of the Society by Several Members.

    This is the Progress wee have made the first year.

    October 1723 E T read a Lecture to show that it is a point of Prudence To prove & Try all Doctrines in Religion, wch was to serve as an Introduction to a Sett of Controversial Discourses agreed upon by the Society to be successivly carried, one every week.

    Twas Disputed.

    1. 1 Whether any man can know or be fully assur’d of his Salvation.

      2d meeting N R read a Lecture to prove ye Being of a God against Atheists

    2. 2 Twas then Disputed What Original Sin was and whether Imputed?
    3. 3 Whether the Conversion was in a moment.

      3d meeting J D read a Lecture against the Deists.

      Twas then Disputed

    4. 4 What an offence was?
    5. 5 What the Sin against ye H. Ghost [was].

      4th meeting J F J read a Lecture against the Papists.

      Twas Disputed

    6. 6 Whether Tythes ought to be given now a dayes
    7. 7 Wherin the Morality of the Sabbath consists.

      5th meeting N L read a Lecture on ye Divinity of X against ye Arians.

      Twas then Disputed

    8. 8 Whether Peter denyed X 3 or 4 Times.

      6th meeting J L read a Lecture against the Quakers.

      Twas then Disputed

    9. 9 Whether anything was added or taken from the Scriptures.

      7th meeting. J T read a Lecture on Baptism against ye Antipaedobaptists.

      Twas then Disputed

    10. 10 Whether Everything yt was in God is God.

    This Night Jan 1724 we finished our first Scheme of Lectures wch were controversial. We agreed upon another, vizt

    1st That there be a Discourse made on the worship of God 2 Upon Prayer 3 On Singing 4 On Preaching 5 On baptism 6 On Ld Supper [7] On reading the Scriptures

    This record covers seven closely written pages, and seems not to have been continued.

    Of the members, the first nine on the list and the thirteenth (John Davenport), were members of the Class of 1721.506 Hunting and White belonged to the Class of 1722, while Nathaniel Leonard was of the Class of 1719. The last member, “Jerald,” whose initial may be read either J or F, was doubtless James Fitz Gerald of the class of 1723, who died in 1727.507 In William Winthrop’s annotated Triennial, the note against his name reads, “Chaplain to a Garrison at the Eastward, either Georges or Richmond. Ob. Dec. 21. 1727. at Ipswich.” Nearly all the members became ministers. Nathaniel Rogers settled at Ipswich as colleague of his father; Charles Chauncy was minister of the First Church in Boston; Ebenezer Pemberton was pastor of the New Brick Church in Boston; Turell was settled in Medford, John Taylor in Milton, Oliver Peabody in Natick, John Lowell in Newburyport, Sylvanus White in Southampton, and Nathaniel Leonard in Plymouth. Samuel Marshall, Nathaniel Hunting, and John Davenport are the only ones who did not become ministers. Isaac Greenwood studied for the ministry and began to preach in London, but on Thomas Hollis’s recommendation was made the first Hollis Professor of Mathematics in Harvard College, a position from which the Corporation, after he had served ten years, was compelled to displace him. John Davenport, at the time of his election, was a tutor in the College, but afterwards became a Boston merchant.

    Mr. Edes exhibited an original agreement dated 22 August, 1653, whereby certain inhabitants of Concord bound themselves to give five pounds annually for seven years to Harvard College, and spoke as follows:

    The document508 which I have brought for your inspection this afternoon, while of intrinsic interest to the descendants of the signers of it and to the alumni of Harvard College, possesses additional value because the Concord records before 1680 are fragmentary, many of them, according to tradition, having been burned in a fire which occurred in the house of Major Simon Willard, the first town clerk. The present obliging town clerk, Mr. Walter A. Carr, in response to my inquiry, writes that he has searched carefully the existing records “but can find nothing concerning such Agreement.” I find no mention of this paper in Quincy’s History of Harvard University, and Shattuck refers to it in a single paragraph:

    In 1653, Concord subscribed £5 a year for 7 years, for Harvard College.509

    This action of the town and church of Concord was doubtless inspired by that of the Legislature in the previous year, under date of 19 October, 1652:

    A DECLARATJON concerning the advancement of learning in New England by the Generall Courte. If it should be graunted that learning, namely, skill in the tounges and liberall artes, is not absolutely necessary for the being of a comon-wealth and churches, yett wee conceive that, in the judgment of the godly wise, it is beyond all quæstion not only laudable, but necessarje for the wellbeing of the same; and although New England (blessed be God) is competently furnished (for this present age) with men in place, and vppon occasion of death or otherwise, to make supply of magistrates, associates in Courts, phisitions, and officers in the com̄onwealth, and of teaching elders in the churches, yett for the better discharge of our trust for the next genneration, and so to posteritje, being the first founders doe weare away apace, and that it growes more and more difficult to fill places of most eminencje as they are emptje or wantjng; and this Courte, findeing by mannifest experjence that though the noumber of schollers at our colledge doth encrease, yett as soone as they growe vpp ready for publicke vse, they leave the countrje, and seeke for and accept of jmplojment elswhere, so that if tjmely provition be not made, it will tend much to the disparagement, if not to the ruine of this com̄onwealth, it is therefore ordered, and heereby enacted by this Court, that a voluntary collection be com̄ended to the inhabitants of this for the raising of such a som̄e as maybe jmplojed for the majntenance of the præsident, certajne ffellowes, and poore schollers in Harvard Colledge, and for that purpose doe further order, that euery toune of this doe choose one meete person to take the voluntary subscriptions of such as shall vnderwrite any som̄e or som̄es of money for that purpose, and to make retourne thereof to the next Courte; and forasmuch as all the collonjes are concerned therein, this Courte doth order the secretarje to signifie to the Gouernors of the seuerall colonjes our endeavors heerein, and to com̄end the same vnto them for their helpe and furtherance in so good a worke.510

    The Colony Records do not preserve the “retourne” which was ordered to be made “to the next Courte.” Perhaps it was not made because of the failure of many towns to obey the order of 19 October, 1652, as appears by the action of the Assembly on 18 October, 1654:

    Whereas wee cannot but acknowledg the great goodnes of God towards his people in this wildernes in raysing vp schooles of learning, and especially the colledge, from whenc there hath sprung many vsefull instruments, both in church and com̄on-wealth, both to this and other places, and whereas at present the worke of the colledge haue binn seuerall wajes obstructed, and seemes yett also at present, for want of comfortable mainetenance for the encouragement of a president, this Court taking the same into theire sorjous , and finding that though many haue binn made for a voluntary contribution, yett nothing haue binn hitherto obteined from seuerall ꝑsons and tounes, although some haue donne very liberally and freely, and fearing lest wee should shew ourselves vngratefull to God, or vnfaithfull to posteritje, if so good a seminary of knowledg and virtue should fall to the ground through any neglect of ours, itt is therefore ordered by this Court and the authoritje thereof, that, besides the proffit of the ferry formerly graunted to the colledg, wch shall be contjnewed, that there shall be yearly levjed, by additjon to the countrje rate, on̄ hundred pounds, to be pajd by the Treasurer of the countrje to the colledg treasurer, for the behoofe and maintenance of the president and fellowes, to be distributed betweene the president and fellowes according to the determination of the ouerseers of the colledg, and this to continew during the pleasure of the countrje; and itt is heereby ordered, that no man shall stand ingaged to pay his voluntary contributjon that he hath vnderwritt by virtue of this Courts , and that such persons as haue already donn voluntarily shall be considered for the same in the countrje rate such a proportion as this addition of one hundred pounds doe add to the rate, to be allowed by the counstable to each person, and by the Treasurer to the counstable.511

    The text of the Agreement follows.

    An agreemt made and agreed vpon by the towne and Church of Concord concerning the Colledge att512 Cambridge, made Aug. 22. 1653.

    Jt is agreed by the company of the sayd towne and church, to giue yearely the sum̄e of fiue pounds for the vse of the sayd Colledge to be leauyed vpon the same towne after the same manner as the other rates are leauyed, and to be payd in att or before the last of ye moneth of May. the sayd yearely sum̄e of 5li to continue for the space of seuen yeares, and then to be ether renewed if we it shall appeare that it may be improued for good, or otherwise we to be att libertye to doe according to the state of things then being. And for the terme of seuen yeares aforesayd, the sayd towne of Concord doth desire that this order may be recorded in the court, and confirmed by the autoritye of the same. Jn wittnes of our consent hereto, we haue hereto sett our handes, the day and yeare aboue written.

    • Pet: Bulkeley
    • John Miles
    • Simon Willard
    • Thomas ffoxe
    • Timothy wheler
    • Richard R R Rice his marke
    • Robert Meriam
    • Thomes Hincksmen513

    • Thomas T Brooks mark
    • wiỻ busse
    • Joseph wheller
    • John Jones
    • Robert Fletcher
    • Willame Talier
    • Georg wheler
    • Thomas Deene
    • william W woods mark
    • Moses wheate
    • James Hosmer
    • William vnder wood514
    • John Smedly
    • Thomas Stow
    • Thomas wheeler
    • Thomas Brown
    • Luke Potter
    • Joseph Mirriam
    • Thomas Bateman
    • Obadia wheeler
    • Geo: Heaward.
    • Thomas Dakeyn
    • Joshua Edmands
    • Henry woodis
    • Baptist O Smedleyes mark.
    • James Blood
    • John Scocthford.
    • William Butterick
    • William Hunt
    • Nathaniell Ball
    • Henry Farwell
    • Humphrey Barat
    • Michaell Wood
    • Geō Meriam
    • [Filed]
    • Concord
    • 5ƚ ꝑ anū for
    • 7 years
    • [Filed]
    • Colledg Collection
    • 5ƚ ꝑ ā for 7 yeares

    Mr. James K. Hosmer, a Corresponding Member, spoke as follows:

    The paper exhibited to the Society is of considerable, perhaps unique, interest. It belonged to the late Joseph Willard, who valued it much as a memorial of his ancestor, Major Simon Willard, a leader in founding the town of Concord and in many other colonial enterprises. The document comes from ȧ, time when Harvard College was in great straits. Action was taken by the General Court, as the records of that body show, to relieve the embarrassment. The towns were enjoined to contribute, an admonition generally but not always heeded. Lists of donations show Concord as among the towns contributing; and no doubt the vote of which we have here preserved the minute was the immediate cause of the donation. Remembering that money had in that day possibly eight times its present value, the gift of Concord to the distressed college was not insignificant.

    The fact that on the paper are inscribed the autographs or marks of the substantial men of the town in 1653 has great interest. Of most of those ancient freemen this is presumably the sole existing relic. The blood of two of them at least, Peter Bulkeley and James Hosmer, flows I suppose in my veins, and I contemplate reverently the signatures set down here so long ago by their good right hands. In the case of many of these forty men undoubtedly there have been descendants who enjoyed the advantages of the institution which the fathers thus sought to uphold. It would be interesting to know how many such descendants could be made out.

    It is also worth while to note that the names here set down of the Concord freemen of 1653 are to a large extent the same names that appear to-day in Concord affairs. The old stock persists and remains dominant. The same thing is true to a remarkable extent in Massachusetts communities in general. In the Connecticut valley the families one hears of are in large part derived from and bear the names of the original settlers; and even in Boston the names dominant today may be traced in great numbers in the shipping-lists of the immigrants that came in in the first twenty years of the Colony. Old New England has sent multitudes to the West: it has been modified again and again, often no doubt to its great enrichment, by stock not kindred,—Huguenot, Scotch-Irish, Irish, Canadian French, Portuguese, and Italian. But still the children of the twenty thousand English, who, as Palfrey tells us, between 1620 and 1640, established the original New England, are in the forefront of life, sound in head, heart, and body, ready as ever for the world’s work.

    Mr. Albert Matthews exhibited photographs of portraits by Sir Peter Lely of Sir Matthew Holworthy and Lady Holworthy, and a manuscript pedigree of the Holworthy family, stating that he was indebted for these to the courtesy of Mr. Frederic M. R. Holworthy of Bromley, Kent, England. The Lady Holworthy depicted was a daughter of Henry Henley and the third wife of Sir Matthew Holworthy.