“WE pass’d on over a Stony Road to Marblehead,” yet another traveler remarked in 1776,
which is a dirty disagreeable Place at present they are here in great Distress as the Town is built amongst Rocks & Stones, where is no land to cultivate.
Marblehead and the people in general are Fishermen or concern’d in that Way, which Source of Support is now at an end many of the men are in the army & the Rest are out of Employ and almost every house swarms with Children of these hardy, temporate Men.
Their situation is miserable the Streets & Roads are fill’d the poor little Boys and Girls who are forc’d beg of all they see the Women are lazy & of Consequence dirty Creatures—there are about 400 houses here & 4 or 5 of them large neat houses—they have a small Battery in a Point near to try to keep of [f] the men of War.
One remarkable object of Charity here was a little Boy whose left arm was shriveled up & dead and his Legs were contracted and folded up like a Taylor’s, and of no strength this emaciated creature would move in an odd manner with the assistance of his Right hand into the middle of the Road before your horse and would beg in a most moving manner and you must give him something or drive over him—I do not want ever to see such another Place.
Privateering, one of the few employers of men not in the army, gained rapidly in popularity during 1776, but little of the impetus originated from Marblehead at that time. Of the local ports, Salem led the way. The lack of privateering from Marblehead at this stage, as well as the attendant dearth of shoreside work it could have generated, stemmed from a lack of capital. Few of the pre-Revolutionary men of prominence or of substantial wealth remained in the community. Jeremiah Lee was dead. Thomas Gerry, Senior, was dead. The elder Jacob Fowle was dead. Nathan Bowen’s Tory leanings forced him to leave for the more remote town of Andover and before the end of this year he, too, was dead. Robert (King) Hooper, another Loyalist sympathizer, had escaped to his country mansion in Danvers. Joseph Hooper had lain forty-two nights on salt fish in the hold of his father’s brig Nancy before making his way to Europe. Benjamin Marston had smuggled himself away from Marblehead in a small boat manned by a Custom House tidewaiter for the sanctuary of Boston. Thomas Robie had been swept out of town on a tidal wave of resentment, his wife screeching as she left that she hoped she would return to find the streets of Marblehead so deep with blood she could row a boat through them. Joshua Wingate Weeks, rector of St. Michael’s Church, came and went as necessity dictated, yet lacked the magnetism to instill courage in his parishioners. John Glover was at the head of a regiment in the army. Jonathan Glover had his hands full as prize agent for the captains of Washington’s Fleet and later as Colonel of the 5th Regiment of Militia in Essex County. Israel Foster was nowhere in evidence. Elbridge Gerry was in his country’s service. Azor Orne was growing old and his fortunes were waning. And so it went with many of the others. The Old Guard was gone; so was much of the prewar fleet, now sold, dispersed, laid up, captured, or rotting. After the war, the leaders of Marblehead were to be the generation just rising at its beginning.
It was George Washington’s Navy that accounted for the greatest activity around Marblehead, although little or no employment. With the withdrawal of the British from Boston in March, threats of invasion or of bombardment subsided, yet British shipping still headed for Boston through much of the early summer, still unaware that it was now in Yankee hands.
With the end of the enlistments for 1775 there was a reshuffling of captains during the month of January 1776 and the acquisition of another schooner, Lynch. Nicholson Broughton and John Selman were not encouraged to continue in the service as a result of their depredations on the island of St. John and the kidnapping of its Lieutenant Governor. John Manley became commodore of the fleet until spring when he learned he was to have the command of the Continental frigate Hancock, then being completed at Newburyport. Samuel Tucker, Daniel Waters, William Burke, John Ayres, James Mugford, and John Skimmer commanded the schooners, Tucker becoming unofficial commodore when Manley and several of the senior officers resigned. Between them all they enjoyed fair success and captured twenty-two vessels before the end of the year.
Bowen, who had nothing better to do, watched their activities with absorbed, if not approving, interest. He was living on the brink of penury. We do not know how he managed to feed himself or his family. Not Tory enough to be declared inimical to the country, yet not Patriot enough to warrant the compassion of his townsmen, merchants refused to sell him goods or to offer him credit for fear his attitudes might be construed as their own.
As he was fond of saying, albeit in cruder form, “Between two stools, the tail comes to the ground.”
Monday, 1 This day clear and cold. Our men coming home from Cambridge and Beverly as the times are out for the last year. The Fowey lay as per last. Tis said another admiral is arrived at Boston from England.157
2 This day fine and moderate. A fishing boat went out and returned and no notice taken [of her] by the ship [Fowey]. James Mugford Junior beat up for recruits for John Glover’s men for the thirteen United Colonies.
3 This day fine and moderate for the season. Came from Boston a [schooner] tender and lay abreast of the Fort [alongside the Fowey]. Many guns fired at Boston. Passed a brig for Boston which I took for Mr. Thomas Gerry’s, [David Ross], from Falmouth in England. This afternoon John Glover beat up for the 13 United Colonies and 14th Regiment. Received ½ quintal of fish of Mr. Tedder.
4 This day fine soft weather, inclinable for rain. Sailed schooner tender [for] Boston. A child of Will Clark removed [with] smallpox.
5 This day soft weather. Passed for Salem a sloop, merchantman [from West Indies]. I dined at Captain Prince farm &c.
6 This day smart cold. Wind at NW. Passed a schooner for Boston. This night I dreamed &c. &c.
7 Fine and pleasant for the season. Field day on board the Fowey. Preaching at both houses. Came out of Boston two ships.
Monday, 8 This day soft weather; a thaw. I find the Fowey’s people have cut down all the trees from Cat Island. This evening a smart light towards Bunker’s Hill. Many cannon fired.
9 This day some rain. A rumor that Bunker’s Hill is taken, but it turned out nothing but the talk. General Putnam sat fire to the remaining houses that was left at Charlestown [and burnt all but three]. Wife a-weaning poor Poll. Tis said 17 people are burnt in the houses at Charlestown and but 2 houses left.
10 This day smart cold. Much wind at NW. This afternoon sailed Captain James Mugford for Cape Ann in schooner [Hope].
11 This day smart wind at SSW. Raw cold. All our boats are out a-fishing again. The Fozvey’s boats a-sounding toward Beverly. This night some rain and snow.
12 This day moderate. This day came from Boston a schooner tender. Passed a ship from Boston to sea. At nine o’clock was found a brand-end on fire under a hogshead of rum in a store [barn] of Captain James Mugford’s, but timely discovered [so did not get ahead],
13 This day smart cold. A ship off. Tis said there is news from England.
14 This day smart cold. Wind at NNE. Some snow. Preaching at both houses. Passed a topsail schooner and two ships for Boston. Passed a schooner from sea for Salem. Caesar Homan buried. Captain Mugford came to the Ferry from Cape Ann.
Monday, 15 This day raw cold. Wind at SSW. Some snow. Passed a ship from Boston.
16 This day moderate. Some fog. The schooner tender moved further to the North Shore. Many cannon fired in the Bay.
17 This day foul weather. Cannon fired all day at sea. A large ship seen off bound for Boston. Tis said Burke sailed from Beverly.158
18 This day smart cold. At noon a great number of cannon fired at Boston. For what? The Fowey fired 3 shot at a fishing boat. I went to farm and sounded the two ponds, viz. Vinnin’s, which I find 28 feet of water, and the other towards Legg’s Hill 12 feet. Some saith tis the Queen’s Birthday.
19 This day pleasant cold weather. Sailed Manley in schooner [ ] on a cruise.159 The tender took a small sail [fishing] boat with Conway and Ramsdell on board.160 This day I am 48 years old.
20 This day smart cold. News from Quebec as cold. The news from Quebec is not for the good of the Colonies.161 Tis said 7 seamen are killed by the landsmen at Manchester. I hope not so.
21 This day cold. Wind NNE. Preaching at both houses of entertainment.
Monday, 22 This day smart cold. The schooner tender shifted her berth. Passed 2 ships and 2 brig for Boston.
23 This day cold. The Fowey dropped down to Baker’s Island. Came from Beverly Samuel Tucker [in the schooner Franklin] and anchored in our harbor. I saw a mock sun about 20 degrees to the southward of the [true] sun about 9 o’clock forenoon. This night sailed Sam Tucker.
24 This day cold. Came from Beverly Captain [Daniel] Waters in schooner Lee cruiser. The Fowey sent a man on shore that they took in a small fishing boat some time ago, named Ramsdell, but Conway remains on board [the tender].
25 This day moderate and cold. A schooner took a brig and ship [off in our Bay bound for Boston] under the South Shore and stood for Plymouth, and I saw two schooners more join them.162 Sailed the tender for Boston.
26 This day smart cold. Much snow fell.
27 This day smart cold. Came to town Captain Alexander Ross from Bilbao, but last from Newbury.
28 This day smart cold. Our harbor froze as low as the Point of [the] Neck [and as the Fort]. Tedious cold.
Monday, 29 This day smart cold. Our harbor froze over. Some of the Continental cruisers are off.
30 This day smart cold. A ship off and chased the cruiser into Cape Ann. The Fowey came to sail and stood for sea [out abreast of Eastern Point] and then tacked and stood for Beverly. Wind at SSW. Snow. Came from Boston Mr. Samuel White.
31 This day somewhat warmer.
1 This day smart cold. Many cannon fired at Boston. Tis said Admiral Graves is to sail for England. The Fowey sailed to Baker’s Island again.
2 This day sailed five sail of shipping from Boston. A ship a-cruising off. A schooner took a brig off Cape Ann and carried her in.163
3 This day smart cold. Andrew Reed buried.
4 This day cold. They say Manley is ashore.164 Ramsdell removed with smallpox. Preaching at both meetings. A Proclamation.
Monday, 5 This day smart cold. Passed a ship for Boston. Captain Ben Calley buried. Came from the country Knott Martin.
6 This day I sat out for the country. Tarried at Mr. Moses Porter in Boxford. Smart cold.
7 This day I tarried at Boxford. We hear many guns fired at the low towns. Smart cold. Mrs. Swett removed [with] smallpox. Came from Boston a brig.
8 Some snow. I returned home again. I have got one of my toes frostbit. Mrs. Bowden, wife of James Bowden, moved [with] smallpox.
9 This day a thaw. Died Will Hayden’s daughter, Will Burke’s wife.
10 This day a thaw. Died Aaron Call. Parson Weeks in town.
11 This day smart cold. Preaching at all three houses. This night came up from Cape Ann Captain James Mugford in schooner [ ]. Sailed the King’s brig from Baker’s Island.165
Monday, 12 This day lame of a toe. Doctor Martin came and dressed it. Aaron Call and Burke’s wife buried.
13 This day fair. Cold. Sailed Captain Hibbert. Wind WSW.
14 This day much snow. At home lame of a great toe.
15 This day fair weather. At 11 o’clock I sat out for Cambridge in company with T. Porter. Arrived at Major Reed’s at 4 o’clock. Supped and lodged at Major Reed’s. We find one of the printers d[ied?] at [ ].
16 This morning I got breakfast at Major Reed’s. At 9 o’clock I sat out for home in partnership with Mr. Joshua Foster, a tailor, and arrived home at dark. All well. His Majesty Ship Fowey sailed for Boston. Nicholas Murphy died on Thursday last. Mrs. Williston and child were moved with smallpox.
17 This day some snow. Anchored here the Hancock cruiser from the South Shore, and this afternoon she sailed round to Beverly. Passed two ships and a brig for Boston. Smart cold. Wind NNW.
18 This morning anchored the Warren cruiser and two wood sloops. The Warren sailed for Beverly. Sailed a ship from Boston. Preach [ing] at St. Michael’s Church and the two public houses.
Monday, 19 This day smart cold. I dined at Mr. J. Prince’s.
20 This day somewhat warmer. I went to Salem. Sold some bunting. I find Samuel Tucker in schooner H[ancoc]k cruiser and sailed schooner Warren on a cruise. Sailed many sails from Boston. Arrived at Headquarter Monsieur Shaterano [sic] born without stocking or shoe.166
21 This morning passed a ship and schooner from Boston and anchored at Baker’s Island. Some ships off. At 1 o’clock passed His Majesty Ship Fowey from Boston for her station off West Beach. Tucker sailed for Beverly, so Manley and Tuck[er] are at Beverly. Burke and Waters out.
22 This day wind easterly. The ship that was below dropped further up and came to under Eagle Island. Came up some fishing boats with fish. The schooner tender moved near the Fowey. A strange schooner in our harbor. Sailed Perkins.
23 This day fair and pleasant. Tis said a fleet from Philadelphia is arrived off Rhode Island and that Nick Bartlett is arrived at Newbury. Small wind. Winds easterly or northerly.
24 This day moderate. Small winds easterly. Passed a brig and small schooner for Boston. Tis said two are broke out with smallpox.
25 This day raw cold. Wind easterly. Sailed schooner tender from the Fowey for Boston. Preaching at all three houses. Tis said Hoppi Kitchen, the gravedigger’s child, hath the smallpox.
Monday, 26 This day wind southerly. Close weather. This evening was buried in a decent manner from Captain Jonathan Glover’s dwelling house, Chance, a native of Portugal in Europe, black complexion, attended by the two skippers of the two houses of worship from the house toward the grave.
27 This day much rain. We hear that the Yankee Hero hath taken an European vessel with some news on board.167 This evening was buried Sarah Crute, wife of Thomas Crute. Wind SE. The ship’s boats took a schooner.
28 This day wind at SW. The Nautilus cleared the schooner. She prove to be a schooner bound for Nova Scotia [ ] and Hanover. Some snow.
29 This day clear and cold. This night some seamen took Eleazer Ingalls’s boat and went to the Nautilus.168
1 This day smart cold. The Nautilus layeth a mile below our Fort. Much ice about her. Ingalls’s boat astern.
2 This day sailed His M[ajesty’s] Ship Nautilus and carried Ingalls’s boat with her. Sailed D. Chapman and Scarlett for the Eastward. Wind WNW. This evening was buried Elizabeth Gardner, whose maid [en] name was Emery.
3 The last evening sailed a brig from Salem, Julicar, master, for the West Indies, and the Fowey slipped her cable and sailed, and this day I saw a ship I suppose to be the Fowey and brig both go into Boston. A sloop and a number of boats took the Fowey’s anchor up. This evening I saw a brig and schooner engage four of the Continental schooners. Night came on [and] they parted.169 Passed a ship and 4 schooners from Boston. Preaching at both meetings.
Monday, 4 This day close weather. A large ship off with a poop, no pendent, red ensign. Came from Boston His Majesty’s Ship Fowey and anchored at her old station. A constant cannonading and bombarding at Cambridge all this night. Came from Boston a ship and spoke the large ship. Passed a ship with a brig in tow for Boston. Passed a topsail schooner and sloop for Boston.
5 This day fine soft weather. At 8 came in a frigate, and the Fowey sent her boat on board, and then the ship stood out again.170 At 1 o’clock anchored a ship from Boston at Beverly, blue ensign. Our cannoneers have brought a gun to the small battery. This night a smart gale of wind at SSW. Rain. Tis said the Continental troops are fortified Dorchester Neck.
6 This morning smart wind at SW. I find Captain H[ugh] Hill’s small schooner sunk at the outer part of Mr. Hooper’s Head. The Niger and Fowey lay at Beverly shore as per last. Came from Beverly Will LeCraw and anchored. I saw a ship off Cape Ann, and I saw four sail join her and then they disappear. This afternoon was buried the wife of Thomas Jackson. Much wind NW. Sailed LeCraw for Philadelphia.
7 This day a Fast. Preaching at both meeting houses. This morning sailed the Niger, and this afternoon came round from Salem a schooner, Standley, master, for Philadelphia. Raw, cold wind at WNW. Fair weather.
8 This day close weather. A ship behind our Neck a-turning down from Boston.171 At 1 o’clock the ship stood in close to our Neck and fired a gun and shew a [ ] flag at her fore-topgallant masthead, and immediately the Fowey came to sail and stood over from Beverly shore and joined the other ship and both stood for Boston. Five sail in the offing bound for Boston. This evening some rain. Wind NE. Much cannon fired above.
9 This day clear and cold. Passed a ship and schooner and sloop for Boston. Much cannon fired all night. Sailed the Salem schooner for Philadelphia. Smallpox at Salem. Came up a sloop.
10 This day raw cold. Wind variable. Tis said the Continental troops have lost eleven men at Dorchester Point and obliged to quit. Preaching at both houses. Poor poor poor Boston! Much firing above all the night. Some snow fell last night.
Monday, 11 This day moderate. Wind S-easterly. Captain Hill’s boat got on the Town Wharf. Great talk of the King’s troops are about moving off for somewhere. Sailed Merritt’s sloop for the Eastward. This night much firing above.
12 or Old St. David. This day close weather. Wind SW. The wise men from the SW are come again with their donations to our Idol. Tis said Manley’s prize is ashore at Brace’s Cove, Cape Ann.172
13 This day raw cold. Wind N-easterly. This afternoon I saw two topsail schooners and a brig a-cruising off Cape Ann. Tis said the Continental people have set fire to the wreck that was ashore at Brace’s Cove. I saw nearly 40 sail of shipping lay below the Castle at Nantasket &c.
14 This day close weather and rain. Passed a ship for Boston. Came round from Beverly a schooner of Major John Pedrick’s for the Island of Sables.
15 This day moderate. Anchored here two of the Provincial cruisers, viz. Samuel Tucker and [John] Ayres. Came from the Eastward Captain Hibbert. Passed a large schooner for Beverly with wood. This night a great light appeared from Boston. Much rain. Tis said that Boston is to be demolished. A small schooner sailed from Salem and looked at the fleet below Boston.
16 This day much rain. Wind N-easterly. Sailed Tucker and Ayres for Cape Ann. Tis said the fire was at Prospect Hill. Two barracks burnt and two men burnt in them, so said. This night many cannon fired above.
17 [St.] Patrick Day. In the morning, moderate. Our privateers all are got in to Beverly. Came from Boston two ships and a brig. We hear the King’s troops are left Boston and lay below, wind bound. Samuel Tucker came in here and [ ].
Monday, 18 This day moderate and clear. Wind easterly. Three of the Provincial cruisers are out. Two ships and a brig are off. The Continental troops have taken possession of Boston and Bunker’s Hill. Tis said 5 of our Regiment are marched off from Cambridge.
19 This day moderate. Wind at E-southerly. Passed 6 ships and a schooner and sloop for Boston Harbor. The King’s folks have turned some vessels adrift after setting fire to them.
20 This day fair weather. Wind WSW. Sailed Jeremiah Rouls on a fishing fare, the first for the Island of Sables, belonging to Major John Pedrick. I saw a number of shipping removing their berths above the lighthouse. A brig and ship came out of Boston. Sailed Captain Hibbert for the Eastward. The evening I saw a large light in the strain of Boston. Cold snow. Tis said the light is the Castle.
21 Squally. Passed a sail for the fleet below Boston. This afternoon a brig appeared off Halfway Rock and stood for Boston. Our five cruisers sailed from Cape Ann and gave her chase. At 5 o’clock the schooners came up with the brig, and there came out a ship and brig and put all our cruisers to the flight &c.
22 This day close weather. Some rain. Passed sundry shipping toward Boston. Some firing at noon. This night snow. Came up Captain Thomas Martin.
23 This day windy. Two sail off said to be King George ships. Wind at west nearest. Sailed a sloop, John Merritt concerned in, for the Eastward. Smart cold. Ice.
24 This day smart wind at WNW. No ships sailed. Preaching at the two public houses. Smart cold.
Monday, 25 Lady Day. Sailed 55 sail of shipping from below Boston and steered to the Eastward. Smart cold. Wind WSW. A Town Meeting. This night some snow. Wind northerly. I suppose the fleet are bound for Halifax with the inhabitants.
26 This day moderate but cold. Passed two ships and a brig for Nantasket. Some of the fleet in sight which sailed yesterday. This night clear and cold. Wind NW.
27 This day smart cold. At 4 o’clock I saw Admiral Shuldham under sail and came out past the lighthouse, and one hundred sail of shipping came out after him and all steered to the Eastward. A smart cold night of it. There looks to be four fifty-gun ships in the fleet. Wind NW.
28 This day smart cold. I find four sloops laden with wood in. Sailed a ship from above. I see a large ship lay above with a burgee out. Received ½ quintal of fish of Mr. Tedder.
29 This day fine and moderate. Wind westerly. This afternoon anchored here schooner [ ], Sam Tucker. Sailed seven sail of shipping from below Boston. This night came a load of Father Bowen’s goods from Andover. J. Casey died at Workhouse. Colonel Powers regiment set off.
30 This day close weather. Wind easterly. This morning sailed Sam Tucker. This afternoon came from below Boston a ship and brig and cruised off in the Bay. This night much snow.
31 This day close weather. Some rain. At 10 o’clock I heard a gun off in our Bay. At noon anchored here Samuel Tucker. Two wood sloops sailed for Salem. Preaching at both meetings. Close, wind NE.
Monday, 1 This day some more moderate. Samuel Tucker sailed. Two ships of the line and two frigates going towards Boston, and returned again Samuel Tucker. Wind NE. Lay in our harbor all night Sam Tucker.
2 This morning anchored here schooner Warren, [William] Burke, from a cruise. Sailed schooner Hancock, S[amuel] Tucker on a cruise.173 Small wind easterly. Sailed schooner Warren for Beverly. Passed a ship for the lighthouse. Close weather. Wind SE.
3 This day much rain. Wind easterly. Tis said a fleet is off Rhode Island, and most of our Continental troops are moved off to the Southward. 7 ships laying below. Departed this life Captain Henry Florence.
4 This day much wind at NW.
5 This day is properly Good Friday, but no preaching at St. Michael’s Church. Arrived Captain John Hooper in a schooner of Colonel Orne’s from Philadelphia, laden with flour. Admiral John Manley arrived at Beverly with 13 of the King’s troops on board, prisoners whom he had taken out of a brig he took bound from Boston for Halifax and carried in to Portsmouth, laden mostly with English dry goods, one Jackson merchant.174 Tis said George Washington Esq. hath taken his departure from Cambridge towards the Southern Provinces. Wind NW.
6 This day fine and pleasant. Wind southerly. Sailed T[homas?] Martin. Captain Hill’s boat launched. This evening was buried the remains of Captain Henry Florence. Tis said General [Artemus] Ward hath the command.
7 This day some rain. Preach[ing] at Salt Peter’s and Dry Bones. Anchored here the Warren and Yankee Hero Continental cruisers. Two wood sloops gone to Boston. Mrs. Gilbert buried.
Monday, 8 This day much rain. Lay here the Yankee Hero and Warren cruisers. Wind NNE. This evening anchored here Samuel Tucker.
9 This day rain. I find Captain Samuel Tucker hath brought the inhabitants that was taken by Manley from Cape Ann and landed them here, and they are housed at Mr. William Rogers’s house at Nick[’s] Cove.175 Lay here the Yankee Hero, s[chooner] Warren, and Sam Tucker. Arrived William LeCraw from Philadelphia. Wind NNE. The smallpox at Salem.
10 This morning sailed the Yankee Hero and Warren out on a cruise. Sam Tucker went out and returned to Beverly as his cruise is up. Passed a ship for Boston. The 3 men are taken up that stole Eleazer Ingalls’s boat and carried her to the ship. Wind SE.
11 This day much wind at SSW. At 9 o’clock sat off from Lee’s Wharf a yawl belonging to Sam Tucker with Daniel Gold, William Canterbury, and a boy, Wodden. The boat got ⅓ way our harbor and then sank. Canterbury sank. The boy saved. Gold took up dead. Came from Boston 2 sloops.
12 This day much wind at SE. Rain this afternoon. Wind WSW. Blew hard. The remains of Daniel Gold buried. Lay in our harbor schooner Warren, Burke.
13 This day raw cold. Wind WSW. Sailed schooner Warren. Squally. Some snow squalls.
14 This morning some frost. Our people have taken the yawl up and the body of William Canterbury that was drownded on Thursday last. Note: the body was found at ¼ after 9 o’clock, so <I conclude> Canterbury lay 72 hours under water at the bottom of the harbor, and was buried at the Old [Burial] Hill.
Monday, 15 This day my father is seventy-eight years old and abideth at Andover yet. Departed this life Stephen Chapman. This afternoon came out from Boston Isle a topsail schooner and fired 2 guns for the brig to speak her but the brig would not. The schooner stood back again. A ship in the offing. The brig proved to be the Yankee Hero and anchored here this evening and the ship sail[ed] for the light [house].
16 This day wind NE. A noise about Wheaton’s family that came from Cape Ann in Captain Hill’s Tiger. Lay here the Yankee Hero and Ayres’s cruiser.176 Much rain. Note: our gentry gave leave to land the people and dwell in J. Hooper house.
17 This day cloudy. Wind WSW. This morning sailed Ayres out. Lay here the Yankee Hero. This evening was buried the remains of Stephen Chapman. Came to town from Andover my father, and came from Newbury Joseph Proctor’s schooner.
18 This morning came out of Boston a ship. The [Yankee] Hero off. Passed a ship for Boston. Came out of Boston a brig and sloop. Passed a sloop for Boston, supposed a prize. Wind WNW. Lay here a [...] schooner, Powells.
19 This day moderate. Wind variable. Came in Burke and sailed again &c. In again at night. Our Fort fired at a schooner coming in. Came up some wood sloops this night.
20 This day fair weather. Wind westerly. At 9 o’clock sailed Burke. Came in two wood sloops. This afternoon came out from below Boston 4 sail of shipping, and the [Yankee] Hero off, and one of the men-of-war gave chase to the [Yankee] Hero and she stood for Cape Ann, and a brig chased a schooner off to sea. Cold weather.
21 This day moderate. This afternoon wind southerly. Anchored here a schooner cruiser and the Yankee Hero. Preaching at both meetings. 2 sloop Boston.
Monday, 22 This day lay here Captain Waters in a schooner cruiser.177 Sailed the Yankee [Hero]. Wind variable. A store burnt at Salem. 3 sloops gone to Boston with wood. Mrs. Stiles came to school-keeping.
23 This day the Yankee [Hero] off. Much wind to the westward. Lay here Waters’s cruiser. I dined at farm.
24 This day lay here Waters and Tucker. The Yankee [Hero] off. At 9 o’clock I sat off for Boxford in company with David Chadwick. We hear Sinclair is arrived at Newbury.
25 This day at Boxford. Note: I settled with Mr. Hale for my looking glass. He gave me 3 dollars.
26 This day at Boxford. At 2 o’clock I sat off for home. Overtaken with rain. Lodged on the road at Mr. Clark’s, Topsfield.
27 This day got home. Find Captain Tucker here in the schooner Lee that Manley formerly had.178 A schooner a-cruising off. Wind southerly.
28 This day fair and pleasant. A ship and brig off. Tucker lay as per last. Preaching at both houses.
Monday, 29 This day fair weather. Wind southerly. This morning a brig went in by the lighthouse. This afternoon three ships off. One hath a small schooner in tow. Sailed Sam Tucker in the Lee cruiser on a cruise. Hazy weather.
30 This morning much rain. This afternoon somewhat fair Sailed Joseph Drinkwater. Came from Salem a small cruiser belonging to Boston and the ship which lay above fired a number of cannon as a salute. This evening I received the greatest part of my household furniture from Boxford and sundry other goods. Some rain.
1 This day somewhat cool. Wind at NW. Lay here small schooner [ ] Cunningham, commander.179 Anchored here schooner Warren, Burke.
2 This morning a smart frost. Sailed many wood sloops for Boston. I dined at Captain Prince farm. A ship off bound for Nantasket Road.
3 A rumor of a large fleet a-coming from Europe. Captain John Lee is arrived at Newbury from Bilbao.
4 This day moderate. Sailed His Majesty’s Ship [ ], Commodore [ ] for [ ] and joined by another ship, and both ships stood off to the Eastward.
5 This day moderate. Preaching at all three houses again. Mr. Weeks preached at St. Michael’s. Elder Merritt’s sloop went for Boston but returned again. Wind easterly. A paper up from Major Gerry &c.
Monday, 6 This morning close weather. Wind NE. Sailed Merritt’s sloop for Boston. We hear a boat belonging to one of the cruisers was overset at Newbury Bar and [ ] men drownded. This afternoon passed a ship for Nantasket. Some rain. Came to town Captains Colls [Collyer?] and Abijah Boden from Newbury. A Town Meeting about somewhat.180
7 This day cold. Wind easterly. Anchored here the Warren cruiser, Burke. At noon Captain Samuel Tucker brought two European brig and conducted them in to Lynn Haven.181 Wind easterly. One brig came from Ireland, laden with beef and butter. The other brig came from England.
8 This day close weather. Came out from below Boston a frigate and returned again. Passed a schooner and sloop for Boston. Tucker at Lynn. Came to town Swett Hooper from Spain, Newbury last. Some rain.
9 This day fair weather. Anchored here Burke. Sailed W. Nichols for the Eastward. Came up Captain Felton’s schooner from the Eastward. Beating up for seamen for a sloop at Salem.
10 This morning sailed Burke. Came from Boston Waters and Merritt’s sloop. A brig gone in toward Beverly. The brig is Abijah Boden from Newbury and anchored here this afternoon. A frigate chased a sloop in from Boston and Burke likewise. Much rain. No newspapers this week.
11 This day fair weather.
12 This morning passed a ship and 2 sloops for Boston. At ½ past 11 a ship saluted above and as the clock struck 12 I had a daughter born. All is well. Preaching at all three houses. Wind easterly. Some rain.
Monday, 13 This day fair and pleasant. Warm weather. I went to Beverly. Sailed William Brown, a fisherman, in Major Pedrick’s 3d schooner.
14 This day employed at Mr. Prince’s farm a-planting. A ship off, and sent Burke in to Cape Ann.
17 This day warm. Employed at farm. Sailed Captain James Mugford in schooner Franklin on a cruise.
16 This day warm. Not well enough to go to farm to work. Tis said a fleet of shipping is off Cape Ann.
17 A Continental Fast. The first I ever know in this Province. This morning three of the Continental’s rovers took a ship and carried to Boston.182 Came out from below Boston a brig and ship. The brig returned again. A natural Fast as we had prayer and a sermon in the forenoon and prayers [in] the afternoon at St. Michael’s Church. Preaching at both dissenting Meetings.
18 This day some rain. Lay here four wood sloops. We hear the ship that was carried in to Boston yesterday hath 1500 barrels of gunpowder and 2000 stands of arms, 1000 suits of blue clothing, and all kinds of tools for intrenching &c. Anchored here Captain S[amuel] Tucker.
19 This day fair and pleasant. Somewhat like Easter Sunday, being the first after Good Friday. Wind southerly. Four sloops sailed for Boston &c. Preaching at all three houses. My daughter Sarah Ashley was christened at St. Michael’s Church by Mr. Weeks.
Monday, 20 This day fair, pleasant weather. We have the news in town that James Mugford Junior is killed.183 I went to Salem. Lay here Sam Tucker and lay all day with his colors half-mast on the account of Mugford’s death.
21 This day fair [and] pleasant. Our folks began to build their fort on Bartol’s Head. The corpse of James Mugford is brought to town to be buried. Lay here Samuel Tucker, and came from Boston Burke and several wood sloops. Wind variable.
22 This day fine and pleasant. This afternoon a grand funeral as James Mugford was buried. Seventy of Colonel Glover’s regiment came and attended the funeral. Captain Tucker fired minute guns. A grand procession. The corpse carried in N[ew] Meeting [House].184 Tis said the British troops are arrived at Quebec, arrived the 2 of May and put all our Continental troops to the rout, leaving sick, wounded &c. &c.
23 This day moderate and pleasant. Sailed schooner Hancock on a cruise. James Davis a-beating up for the Yankee Hero at Newbury.
24 This day fair and pleasant. A ship fired off Cape Ann. Wind easterly. Came out from below Boston a brig. Passed a ship for the lighthouse. The brig came to Lynn and carried a small schooner off. Then chased a sloop into Lynn. Passed the second ship for the lighthouse. Sailed Daniel Chapman. Mr. Weeks went passenger. My father quite ill.
25 This day a fresh breeze to the southward. The Continental cruisers out. Salem sloop at Beverly.
26 This day close weather. Wind easterly. Lay here Sam Tucker. Some rain. Preaching at both meetings.
Monday, 27 This day close weather. Sailed Sam Tucker on a cruise. Some other cruisers off Cape Ann. A Town Meeting.185 The militia chose four captains and &c. Sailed for Boston Samuel Giles in his boat.
28 This day close weather. Some rain. The wife of Dr. Everton and son of Samuel Ashton, schoolmasters, were buried.
29 This day a sort of a election. Came from Nantasket a ship and lay off all day and spoke another ship off. Anchored here Tucker and Burke cruiser.
30 This day cold morning. At 10 o’clock I sat out for Boxford. I left 3 cruisers in our harbor. Died the wife of Benjamin Bowden Junior.
31 This day fair. I find there hath been a smart frost this night, supposed to have done some damage to the corn. Sailed a fleet of 10 sail from below Boston.
1 This day at ½ past 2 o’clock I sat off from Boxford and came to Marblehead. Some rain. Anchored here sloop Yankee and many other vessels.186
2 This day close weather. Preaching at both meeting.
Monday, 3 This day close weather. Sailed sundry vessels for Boston. A man broke out with smallpox on board the sloop Yankee. Anchored here the schooner Lee, Waters, and this evening anchored Tucker. I bought a ¼ of a barrel of fresh beef.
4 This day fair weather. Lay here the Continental cruisers. My son Ashley came to town yesterday and sat off again today a-roving.
5 This day sailed Waters in schooner Lee and Johnson in sloop Yankee and Tucker in schooner Hancock. Sailed from below Boston a large ship. Anchored here schooner Warren, O’Burke.187 The schooner Franklin at Boston. Came from Ipswich Major Pedrick schooner, [...] fisherman to land her fish.
6 This day fair, warm. This forenoon I went to Salem. This afternoon I saw three cruiser off Cape Ann. Tis said a ship is gone in to Cape Ann Harbor.
7 This day fair weather. Tis said the ship is from Jamaica for London. Tis said the Yankee Hero of Newbury hath taken a Scotch prize off Cape Ann.188 All our cruisers are out in pursuit of a ship from Glasgow with troops on board.
8 This morning the schooners Warren and Lee came in to this harbor of Marblehead with their true prize from Glasgow in Scotland and with 95 Highland troops. The ship is the Ann, Captain [John] Denniston, five weeks and 6 days out.189 Passed the Milford and Yankee Hero her prize for the lighthouse.
9 The last evening I came on board the ship Ann in order to cleanse her from the smallpox with Captain Roads, Eli[as] Vickery, Thomas Antiton and Jam[es] Quilty, and this day unbent ship’s sails and carried the sick to Cat Island and landed the sails at Nick’s Cove. Burke engaged a ship and bark. Waters lay in our harbor all day. Came a brig from below Boston and carried a schooner in and the ship and bark. Note: Captain Samuel Green hath the charge of the ship Ann.
Monday, 10 This day on board ship Ann. Carried all the bedding and other clothing to Cat Island that was between decks and washed all clean between decks.
11 This day we carried all the boards on shore to the Neck and burnt them, and then we smoked the ship and washed her with vinegar from stem to stern. The men are erecting a fort on Hewett’s Head.
12 This day on board ship Ann. Employed in attend in clearing the cabin and steerage, and this forenoon a King’s brig chased three sloop that came from Boston. This afternoon four of our cruiser chased the brig in to the lighthouse, and then they all come in to this harbor and lay all night.
13 This day on board ship Ann. Sailed schooner Lee, Waters, and returned by noon. Came from the Eastward D. Chapman with the Reverend Mr. Weeks and his family and the widow Hannah Dixey.
14 This day at noon Quilty, Antiton, and myself are discharged from ship Ann. This afternoon the ship came in to Colonel Lee’s wharf. The Yankees obliged Commodore Banks to quit his post and sailed for Halifax with 12 sail of shipping with him.190 All our cruisers out.
15 This day the inhabitants are unloading ship Ann at Colonel Lee[’s wharf]. Anchored schooner Franklin, [John] Skimmer, and sailed again. A ship and brig off. All our cruisers are out.
16 This morning five of the Continental cruiser are attacking the ship and brig. Cannon fired all day. This evening 7 sail of cruiser attacked the ship and brig. A constant firing of cannon till 12 at night. The ship and brig are taken.191 Preaching at St. Michael’s, and the 2 houses. Sailed Will Andrews for Spain.
Monday, 17 This day fair. Wind SW. A ship off. Tis said four men are killed on board our privateers and a major of the Regulars. A Town Meeting about Independancy and throwed off King George the 3, as tis said.
18 This day fair weather. Sailed a large sloop, Fiske, commander, from Salem for Boston. A transport ship hath gone in as there is no King’s ship or forces to direct them or assist them. Strange, Oh Strange Great Britain! Strange Commodore Banks &c. Two topsail vessels off this evening.
19 This day fair weather. Came from Boston sloop [Tyrannicide], Fiske.192 No ships off. Tis said the ship that was taken yesterday left 14 sail 2 days before she was taken.193 Our people employed building a fort on Twisden’s Hill, so-called. This afternoon I went to Cat Island with a coffin for a child dead of smallpox. Came from Newbury Hooper, Selman, and Trevett’s schooner with salt.
20 This day warm. No ships off. Some of the Continental cruisers are out in the Bay a-cruising. Note: all the randives[?] is to be held at Boston as the chief seat of war is there. We hear the body of the lieutenant of Commodore Banks was found floating with his sword, gold watch, uniform, and some guineas in his pocket, whom was drownded in the fight on the 19 of May last at night when James Mugford was killed.194 This evening anchored here Samuel Tucker and O’Burke.
21 This day fair. Lay here schooners Hancock and Warren. A barbeque at Ferry.
22 This day fair weather. This day lay here Tucker and O’Burke. Sailed Ayres for Boston with smallpox on board. Fiske and Waters out &c.
23 This day hazy weather. At 6 o’clock drums beat for alarm and to man Tucker and Burke as there is a fleet of ships off. At 7 sailed Tucker and Burke. The sloop and two others off and at 10 o’clock ten sail of shipping appeared. Supposed to be the Flora frigate and 9 transports,195 all our cruisers a-dodging them. This evening all the ships and cruisers are steering for Nantasket. Small wind SE. Preaching at all three houses.
Monday, 24 This day warm [and] sultry. The old hen Flora layeth about five leagues off and keepeth all her chickens around her as there is ten sail of hawks a-flying about them and no hen’s nest at Nantasket. This evening the Flora fired for a cock to assist her in to a nest, but the cocks are all gone to roost abroad. The hawks are our Continental cruisers, schooner Hancock, Tucker; Lee, Waters; Warren, O’Burke; [Lynch], Ayres; Franklin, Skimmer; sloop [Tyrannicide], Fiske; schooner Washington, Broughton; a letterman; O’Brian in sloop;196 and schooner makes ten sail. The wing of one of the Flora chickens are broke.
25 This morning I find the Flora and her fleet off. All our Continental cruisers are at anchor at Nahant. At noon, calm. This afternoon the Flora stood for Nantasket till 3 o’clock, and then she sent a ship to make what discovery she could for a pilot, but to no purpose. At 7 o’clock the said ship joined her fleet again and all stood to the Eastward. This evening Mrs. Perry buried. Sister Martin came to town from Amesbury.
26 This day fair weather. The frigate off with her fleet, and at 7 morning a ship stood for Cape Ann on discovery but soon returned. Anchored here O’Brian and his partner. Ditto O’Burke and Tucker. Sailed from here a letter-of-marque schooner belonging to Salem. This evening passed a sloop, Fiske, for Salem.
27 This day some wind at NNE. The Flora and her fleet off. At 7 o’clock the Flora bore away for the harbor of Boston but hove to about two leagues off and made a signal for a pilot but to no purpose. Then she hauled off again with her fleet and turned down to the back of our Neck. All our cruisers are out, and this evening anchored here O’Brian and partner. Passed for Salem, Fiske. Small wind SE.
28 This day fair, warm. The Flora and her fleet are off and at noon wind SE the fleet stood for Nantasket, and at 1 o’clock the Flora sent a ship on discovery for a pilot, but soon returned and the fleet all hauled to the Eastward. Lay here O’Brian and partner and Tucker. At dark the Flora and all her fleet are about five leagues to the ESE-ward of Halfway Rock. Wind southerly. They lay off east.
29 This day very hot. The Flora and her fleet are seen off. Came to town the captain’s lady of His Majesty Ship Roebuck from New York.197 Sad tidings from New York and Canada. Bloody news! Bloody news! Came from Boston schooner Warren, O’Burke. Eb Brooks moved with smallpox. Received £0.18.8 for my attendance on board ship Ann in cleansing her of smallpox, from Jonathan Glover Esq., ship’s agent.
30 This day somewhat close weather. Wind small, easterly. Passed many vessels for Nantasket. Some thunder. Preaching at all three houses. Some officers of Glover’s Regiment at St. Michael’s the forenoon. This afternoon anchored here Sam Tucker in schooner Hancock.
Monday, 1 This day close weather. Passed many sloops for Boston and passed two sloops cruiser for Salem. Lay here schooner Hancock, Tucker.
2 This day some showers of rain. Lay here Sam Tucker. Passed many sloops for Boston. Tis said the British troops are arrived at or near New York. The smallpox brief [?] at Boston.
3 This day cool air. Sailed Sam Tucker. A child of Mr. Robert Devereux was buried. No ships off.
4 This day somewhat [...] of one of the brigs at Lynn.
5 This day much rain. This evening anchored here a small sloop with a standing topsail and some schooners.
6 This day fair weather. Arrived at Cape Ann two ships taken by the sloop Yankee, Captain Johnson.198 This evening anchored here O’Brian and his consort and O’Burke and Tucker, all Continental cruisers. Passed for Salem sloop, Fiske, and anchored here a large schooner with lumber. Tis said they have inoculated all hands at and about Boston.
7 This day fair weather. This morning sailed sloop O’Brian and schooner cruiser. Preaching at all three houses. Tis said the inhabitants of Boston are poxed.
Monday, 8 This day I dined at the farm. Tis said the British troops are landing at Long Island. All our Continental cruisers are at Boston.
9 This day small wind easterly. Sailed two ships from Cape Ann for Boston, prizes that sloop Yankee sent home, but she hath not returned herself. Tis supposed she hath made a mistake. Sailed sloop, Fiske, from Salem. In the night between the 9 and 10 of July 1776 I dreamed I was in a boat and sat off from a city with three oars, and I had the starboard oar, and the tide of flood, and I pulled the boat round and landed at an island where I found some woman I was acquainted with and a small town. Fine sun-shiny day.
10 This day some rain. I assisted Captain Robert Hooper with his hay 4 hours. Passed a brig from Plymouth for Beverly, [a] prize, and Ayres in schooner [ ] cruiser to assist the brig. News from New York will make some talk.
11 This day much rain. I assisted Captain Hooper with hay 3 hour. Tis said the smallpox is at Salem.
12 This day somewhat cold. I assisted Captain Hooper with hay 2 hours in forenoon and 4 in afternoon. Captain Sam Tucker in our harbor fitting out for a six weeks’ cruise. Anchored here sloop, O’Brian.
13 This day close weather but no rain. Lay here O’Brian and Tucker. All the New York news falls through, mostly.
14 This day some rain. Wind easterly. Lay here O’Brian and Sam Tucker. Preaching at all three houses. This night came from Boston O’Burke in schooner Warren.
Monday, 15 This day fair weather. Lay here O’Brian and Sam Tucker. O’Burke lays at the wharf fitting out. At noon a smart shower of rain. Tis said Lord Howe is gone to New York. Tis said Independence is took place, so tis said Admiral Howe is one month too late for [ ].
16 This day fair weather. Anchored here schooner Franklin, Captain Skimmer.
17 This day fair weather. Sailed four of our Continental cruisers, viz. O’Brian and Skimmer, O’Burke and Tucker. Came from Plymouth a bark that Manley took some time ago. I went to New Mills. Tis said a British ship hath taken three of our woodmen. We hear five regiments are ordered off for New York. So the famous 14 Regiment is to be removed from Beverly at last. Sailed sloop Rover on a cruise.199.
18 This day fair weather. Passed for Salem sloop, Fiske, which hath her prize with her. The prize is a schooner from Halifax for New York. The captain of the schooner was killed in the engagement.200 Many cannon fired at Boston.
19 This day wind NE. Some rain. Lay here sloop, O’Brian. Passed a brig from Salem for Boston.
20 This day fair weather. Came up sundry woodmen from the Eastward. Tis said that the King’s fleet hath taken many of our vessels to the Eastward. Lay here O’Brian. Passed for Salem a brig, Captain Souter. Came up from fishing Nicholas Gordon. Passed a ship for Boston. This morning the Fourteenth Regiment marched off for New York from Beverly.
21 This day moderate. Cloudy. Lay here O’Brian’s sloop. Preaching at St. Michael’s and Story’s. No preaching at Salt Peter’s.201 Tis said the letter-a-marque schooner hath taken a ship and sloop.
Monday, 22 This day fair weather. Tis said the ship that got in at Boston last is from Jamaica, a transport from Ireland blowed off our coast last winter. After 2 o’clock this afternoon I received a ticket to appear on Tuesday the 23 instant from Mr. Nath[aniel] Homan, Captain John Selman.
23 This day sailed O’Brian’s sloop. Passed a ship for Boston. This afternoon a grand muster on our Training Hill as there is a call for a draft of men to enlist in the Continental service to guard our back settlements &c. Our quota is eight men. We raised 120 £ in cash by subscription and enlisted 1 man, Samuel Brimblecome. Close weather.
24 This day fair weather. Lay here O’Brian’s sloop. Our men are a-beating up for volunteer for our land forces.
25 This day fair weather. A muster this forenoon. Captain [John] Selman and [John] Merritt’s commissions and Leftenant Homan, Nathaniel Pearce, George Wills and Mason Harris commissions all were received.202 The prize ship that the letter-a-marque schooner, Lander, had taken was retaken by one of His Majesty’s Ships of war about two leagues from Newbury Bar. The Americans took to the boat.203
26 This day I went to Beverly for schooner Ann’s sails. Arrived here a small cutter from New York with barrels of flour. Lay here sloop, O’Brian. Sailed sloop, Fiske, from Salem.
27 This day small winds variable. Lay here O’Brian’s sloop. I heard some cannon this night. New news from South Carolina.204
28 This morning before sun-rising a prize ship saluted off our Fort with 8 guns and about half an hour after the ship fired 6 guns. She is from Halifax for New York. At 7 o’clock this morning anchored here schooner Warren, Captain Burke, whom had 3 men killed and 8 wounded on Wednesday last. Mr. William Headen hath two sons dead on board Burke and a man, Brown. The ship was taken by the Hancock and Franklin, Continental cruisers.205 This evening Mr. Headon’s two sons was buried. Preaching at St. Michael’s and Story’s. Note: Jonathan Proctor came home prize-master and Captain Jonathan Glover agent.
Monday, 29 This day much rain. Thunder and lightning. The ship attempted to come to Gerry’s Wharf, but she drew too much water and they hauled her off again. This evening came to town Captain [John] Bradford as an Agent for the Province.206 Lay here O’Brian and O’Burke.
30 This day somewhat showe[ry]. Lay here O’Brian and O’Burke and ship Peggy. This evening the Peggy came to sail and stood down and came to below the Fort.
31 The last evening at 11 o’clock I went on board ship Peggy with Arn[old] Martin, and we came to sail and sailed for Boston and arrived off Long Wharf at ½ past 11 o’clock before noon. Then came alongside the ship Mr. Hammond in a sloop boat and we all took passage home in her and at 5 o’clock we landed at Marblehead &c. Our people erected a beacon at the Ferry.
1 This day a Provincial Fast. Preaching at St. Michael’s Church and Dry Bones. No preaching at Salt Peter’s. Whitwell attending wife at Boston with smallpox. Sailed O’Brian on a cruise. Sailed O’Burke for Boston to repair.
2 This day warm weather. This afternoon I went to Salem. Philip, a servant of Jonathan Rich, was buried that died of his wounds received on board Burke.
3 This day fair weather. Arrived a sloop with timber for platforms for the small forts. We hear Captain White of Salem hath taken a large ship.207
4 This day fair and cold. Preaching at all three houses. This evening anchored here a Continental schooner from Boston bound for Machias, foreigners &c.
Monday, 5 This day I went to Salem but no business offered and I returned again. Lay here a schooner bound for Machias.
6 This day fair weather. I spliced a cable on board a sloop. Lay here the Continental schooner. Sailed Joseph Proctor for Newbury. Parson Whitwell’s son hath the smallpox again.
7 This day fair weather. Sailed the d[am?]n Continental schooner. Came to town Eg Gr Dm [sic]. Came up many of our schooners with wood. Anchored here a sloop from Rhode Island with flour and corn. Poor poor times for the Episcopalians of America. The Whigs have the day.
8 This day much rain. Great talk of a pirate to be fitted out here.
9 This day some fog. Passed a ship for Boston and passed a sloop from Martinique for Salem.
10 This morning before day[break] the mate of the ship that James Mugford took and the two mates of the ship Ann and steward and one hand of ship Ann took Rich[ard] Coombs boat and went off for sea. Much fog this day. Came round from New Mills the schooner True Blue to fit out, William Coles, commander.208 This evening the corpse of the wife of Peter Jayne was buried. Tis said that 25 persons are dead this day of smallpox at Boston.
11 This day close weather. Preaching at St. Michael’s and the two other houses of worship. Passed a brig for Salem. Anchored here Captain Burke from Boston.
Monday, 12 This day cloudy. Some rain, in squalls. Wind at the northward. Anchored here Captain Waters from Boston. This afternoon much rain. Sailed Waters.
13 This day foggy. Lay here schooner Warren, Burke. Schooner True Blue a-fitting out.
14 This day foggy at times. Some rain.
15 This day much rain. Arrived a prize brig from South Carolina, taken by Tucker and Skimmer.209 Passed for Salem sloop [Revenge, Joseph], White.
16 This day some rain. Sailed for Boston the prize brig. Lay here Burke. Arrived Jo Drinkwater. Came passenger Nat Leech.
17 This day close weather. Lay here Burke.
18 This morning passed for Salem two ships that sloop Revenge, Joseph White, had taken, and a number of sloops and schooners. Preaching at all three houses. I stood for a child of John Vorte[?]. Died Tobias Johns of his wounds.
Monday, 19 This day somewhat foggy. Sailed schooner Warren, Burke. Tobias Johns buried.
20 This day foggy.
21 This day close.
22 This day sailed from Salem a Continental brig for Boston. Employed John Clone.
23 This day arrived Sam Tucker.
24 This day fair. Sailed Tucker for Boston. This afternoon the Miljord chased a prize ship into our harbor and stood off again.
25 This morning I saw the Milford take a brig off Cape Ann. After noon a fisherman brought the crew of said brig which proved to be the sloop Rover prize.
Monday, 26 This day I sat off for Boston.
27 This day at Boston.
28 This day at New Boston.
29 This day at New Boston.
30 This day at New Boston.
31 This day at New Boston.
1 This day at New Boston.
Monday, 2 This day at New Boston.
3 At New Boston.
4 This day at New Boston.
5 This day at New Boston.
6 This day at New Boston. Sailed the schooner True Blue from Marblehead on her four months’ cruise. William Coles, commander.
7 This day at New Boston.
8 This day I at New Boston.
Monday, 9 This day at New [Boston].
10 This day at New Boston.
11 This day I at New Boston.
12 This day at New Boston.
13 This day I at New Boston.
14 This day I came home to Marblehead from New Boston and I find all well.
15 This day warm morning. Much rain, thunder, and lightning. Noon, fair. Wind NW. Came from Boston the Continental brig and stood for Salem. Lay here Sam Tucker and sloop, Captain Leech. Mr. Weeks preach at Church. Preaching at both meetings.
Monday, 16 This day fair, cold. At Marblehead.
17 This day some rain. Wind southerly. Joseph Proctor Junior taken with the smallpox, and came from the Eastward Dan Chapman with smallpox on board. Lay here Tucker and Leech.
18 This day I sat off for Boston in a small schooner and returned again. I saw a ship under the South Shore.
19 This day I sat off for Boston in the small schooner and arrived at New Boston by 2 o’clock &c.
20 At New Boston.
21 At New Boston. Employed on board a schooner belonging to Cape Cod. Set her foremast.
22 At New Boston &c. Joseph Sweet and I went and saw Bunker Hill, Prospect Hill &c.
Monday, 23 At New Boston on board schooner half day. Set her mainmast.
24 At New Boston on board schooner a day.
25 At Boston.
26 At Boston.
27 At Boston.
28 At Boston. Employed on board Captain Bradford’s schooner, Eliot, master. Sailed a ship for London in England.
29 At New Boston.
Monday, 30 At Boston. Employed on board Bradford’s schooner ½ day.
1 I came from Boston in a sloop said to belong to Daniel Glover and Eliot and quartermaster. Find all well.
2 At Marblehead. Passed the sloop Revenge for Salem and brig, Souter,210 commander, came in to Salem. New news from sea. More troops and horse. Souter took a brig with 19 of the Light Horse on board.
3 This day I began with John Martin and went to Salem with his sloop and came to Marblehead with the Camden[?]. Wind SE. Rain.
4 This day we sat off for Boston at 11 o’clock and arrived at Boston by 2 o’clock and went to the South End and landed some sugar and came to Long Wharf again. Much rain.
5 This day lay at Boston. Landed all our sugars. Come in Captain Waters in schooner Lee cruiser.
6 This day at sun-rising came to sail and sailed as far as Pudding Point and lay till noon, then came to sail and sailed to Salem. Arrived at Salem sloop Rover and one of her prizes.
Monday, 7 This day I went to Boston from Salem in sloop Freemason. Went in company with a prize ship.
8 At Boston. Landed all the wines and sugars. Timothy Goodwin smallpox. Arrived Ayres at Boston.
9 Came to Marblehead. We hear nobody but Timothy hath the smallpox in town. Sailed brig Reprisal and sloop Phoenix out on a cruise.211
10 This day passed a large ship and a brig from sea for Boston and a brig from Salem for Boston.
11 This day fair. This afternoon I went to Lynn to work on the brig.
12 At work at Lynn. This night I came home.
13 At Marblehead. Fair weather. Attended Church all day.
Monday, 14 This morning I sat off for Lynn. Employed on board the William brig belonging to Mr. Hussey
15 This day at Lynn.
16 This day at Lynn. Edward Bowen hath a son born.
17 This day at Lynn. Timothy Goodwin died of smallpox,
18 This day at Lynn.
19 This day at Lynn. This evening I came home. Find all well.
20 This day fair. Preaching at Church and both meeting.
Monday, 21 This morning I sat off for Lynn. Finished all the fore-topmast shrouds.
22 This day employed on board the brig. Employed in rattling the fore shrouds down.
23 This day employed on board brig. Bloody news from the westward.
24 This day employed on board brig.
25 This day employed on board brig. Rattled the main shroud down. Got main-topmast up and yard across. Captain Dennison went to Boston.
26 Employed on board the brig. Came home at night.
27 This morning news from son Ashley. Passed a brig for Salem. The prize brig that had the Light Horse came from Newbury [with?] Thomas Gerry’s schooner.
Monday, 28 I sat off for Lynn. Employed on board brig William.
29 This day at Lynn on board the brig William, Captain Dennison.
30 This day employed on board brig. Finished all her rigging.
31 This day I came from Lynn and I tarried at Mr. Prince’s and helped to husk corn. Much rain. Note: I received my pay for brig from Mr. Hayes, merchant.
1 This day I at farm. Came from Halifax a sloop with a number of prisoners,212 and the sloop hath the smallpox on board.
2 This day I at farm. Arrived a prize snow from Nova Scotia and schooner, both taken by LeCraw. Sailed from Boston the Old Zack.213
3 Arrived a schooner from Halifax, a flag of truce, Bailey. The sloop flag of truce gone to Rainsford Island. Preaching at all the public houses. John Carder buried.
Monday, 4 This day I sat off for Charlestown and arrived at dark.
5 This day at Charlestown at work on board Colonel Thomas Gerry’s schooner Tabitha.
6 At Charlestown.
7 At Charlestown.
8 At Charlestown.
9 Left Charlestown and came to Boston.
10 Lay at Clark’s Wharf. Somebody set fire to the ship Isaac but was soon discovered. Warm.
Monday, 11 This day I left Boston and came to Marblehead. Came in a number of prizes this last week to Boston. Some rain. Hannah, the mother of Samuel, was buried at St. Michael’s Churchyard, consort of the Honorable Robert Hooper of Marblehead. A Church meeting and chose Church wardens.
12 This day I at home. This morning anchored here schooner Hancock, Tucker, from a cruise. Peter Martin buried and Isaac Wodden.
13 This day anchored here a prize belonging to Tucker that lost a man overboard, Tishew, and the schooner and prize both went to Boston. Came from Boston Mr. Gerry’s schooner Tabitha.
14 This day sailed a snow that [Le]Craw took at Nova Scotia. We hear Nathan Bowen Junior is returned from Nova Scotia.214 Received ¼ quintal of fish from Jonathan Rich. Came from Rainsford Island a sloop flag of truce.
15 Came in Ben Reed in a prize brig. Tis said that 80 of the Europes took a sloop from Salem and run off for sea.
16 This day fine and moderate weather. Came from Boston sloop [ ], John Stephens.
17 This day came in a brig, the sloop Molly’s prize. Preaching at St. Michael’s and both the meetings.
Monday, 18 This day I about town. Departed this life the wife of Mr. B. Boden, Town Clerk.
19 This day I sat out for Boston in a small boat, but the wind came to the southward and I returned back again and delivered the boat to Captain John Stephens.
20 This day I set out for Boston by land and dined with Captain Broughton at the Two Purlervers [sic] and we lodged at the Widow Frost’s. Came in a prize from the True Blue.
21 This day at Boston. About this time sailed brig William, Captain Dennison, for Europe from Lynn.
22 This day at Boston. Tis said that Fort Washington is taken by the British troops.215
23 This day I came from Boston. I find two prizes of the True Blue and one of the [...] in our harbor. This evening the remains of Mrs. Tabitha Gordon was buried. Departed this life Doctor John Lowell.
24 This day much rain. Preaching at St. Michael’s and both meetings.
Monday, 25 This day foggy. Wind southerly. Rain. Lay in our harbor the sloop Satisfaction and Rover and a cartel sloop and schooner.216
26 Close weather. Some rain. The remains of Doctor John Lowell was buried.
27 This day wind NE. Much rain. Came in a prize bark taken by schooner Warren, Thorndike, of Beverly. Sailed for Boston Souter’s prize brig, Nathaniel Grow, Burke’s prize master.
28 This day came in the True Blue cruiser, Captain William Coles, commander. Sailed sloop Rover, Abijah Boden, commander. Tis said the King’s troops are in possession of all the forts in New York Government. Sailed LeCraw.
29 This day I went to Beverly. Employed by Captain Robert Hooper on schooner Ann. Arrived at Beverly schooner Warren cruiser, [Israel] Thorndike, commander, which saluted with 20 guns large and small.217 Passed Commodore [John] Manley for Boston in the Hancock frigate.218 Came from the country my daughter Hannah. Tis said many of our relations will come short home &c.
30 Wind easterly. Rain. Anchored here a schooner cruiser from Cape Ann. Arrived J[ohn] D[evereux] Dennis from sea.
1 This morning fair and clear. A sail off the South Shore, I suppose a Continental brig, Inman, commander, from Boston &c. I saw a smoke in the offing as the smoke of cannon. Sailed brig Molly, James, and George Gordon in schooner of Josh[ua] Orne’s. Came from Beverly a number of prisoners for the cartel, and they all deserted her. A sloop and schooner off, supposed to be two King’s cruisers. Preaching at all the public houses in this town.
Monday, 2 This day raw cold. Wind NW. Came from Boston sixty prisoners to be sent in the cartel. A muster evening for a draft to man our lines again [at New] York.
3 This morning sailed sloop Satisfaction, John Stephens, commander. Wind SE. Much rain. Warm air.
4 This day rain. Wind NE.
5 This day I went to Beverly for Captain Adams. Sailed a flag of truce schooner. Sailed a Cape Ann schooner cruiser.
6 This day at Beverly employed on board schooner Ann. Arrived sloop Polly.
7 This day at noon I came from Beverly. Anchored here from Boston Mr. Sam White’s schooner Second Attempt. Wind at SW.
8 This day fair. Preaching at all the public houses. Small winds variable.
Monday, 9 A rumor of a British fleet off Rhode Island with a number of troops and that they had done with New London on Friday last.
10 This day came up Captain Benjamin Mitchell and sells his wood at 20/-Sterling at the sloop Queek [Quick?] at [ ]. Smart cold. Wind at NW.
11 This day cold. Several schooners came up with wood. Many prisoners are in town for to go in the flag of truce. Tis said there hath been a battle and that eight thousand of the European troops are killed and taken.
12 Yankee feast. Some snow. Passed a brig for Beverly. Prayer and a sermon at St. Michael’s and something at the two public houses. Tis said that Whit well and Story gave their God their thanks for the bare-feeted army’s having killed six thousands and taken two thousands of the British army prisoners. Tis the easiest thing in the world to be mistaken as well in the High Pit as the Low Pit.
13 Close smoky weather. I heard a man that rides post say that there hath been no battle as yet and that General Howe is within 30 miles of Philadelphia with his army of 18 thousand men, and marches on his own ground right out.
14 This morning sailed Captain Stone in a cartel sloop for Halifax. Note: I went alongside the sloop with Mr. Jeffers of Boston, sailmaker.
15 Smart cold. Preaching at all three houses.
Monday, 16 Anchored here a prize ship taken by the sloop Polly,219 John Dixey, prize master. Passed a ship for Beverly, J. Lee, master.
17 This day smart cold. Came up many of our wood schooners. Tis said William Tucker hath broke his thigh at the Eastward. Passed a large ship for Boston.
18 This day cold.
19 This day cold. I went to farm. Schooner True Blue, [William] Coles, brig bent sails for Boston.
20 This day close weather. Sailed schooner True Blue prize brig for Boston. Mr. Prince hath two fat ox killed. News from afar. Talk of peace.
21 This day much snow. Wind NE &c. My honored father quite low in health.
22 This day somewhat moderate. My honored father quite ill. I had a note at Church, but did not attend Church myself. Captain Knott Martin came from Boston. Wind NW.
Monday, 23 This morning near eight o’clock departed this life my honored father, aged seventy-eight years and eight months and eight days. He was born on the 4 day of April Old Style, 15 N[ew], in the year 1698 and died in the year 1776. This day moderate but cold. A man hath his leg cut off, a prisoner taken by sloop Polly.
24 This day cold.
25 Cold as Christmas. I did not attend Church as there was a full Church. Mr. Story attended with his wife to Church.
26 This day stormy. This evening the remains of my father was interred at the New Meeting House Yard. Terrible going. Much rain. Mr. Weeks read prayer at the grave. The bearers are the Honorable Robert Hooper, Major Richard Reed, Captain John Webber, Captain John Griste, Mr. Samuel Chamblet, and Mr. Samuel Swett, Thomas Porter, Church clerk.
27 This day pleasant but bad traveling. Tis said the fam[ous?] General Lee is taken by 60 of the British Light Horse &c. &c.220
28 This day close weather. Came to town a cart laden with trumpery from somewhere and landed at John Glover’s former dwelling house near New Wharf, so called.
29 This day cold wind. Self attended Church all day. Preaching at all the houses of worship. Tis said that Twisden’s schooner hath taken a Yankee Scotch prize at Portsmouth in the late storm and that the Milford was not far off the coast the day before.221 Captain Nathan Lindsey sat off.
Monday, 30 This day cold. A great rate off the shore for an out wind but the cold keeps the wind in. Orders are come for the fish vessels to sail, viz. schooner Tabitha, J. Hogges, and schooner [ ], N. Gordon, with Continental fish. The news is at is from the South.
31 This day cloudy. Raw cold. Looks for an out wind. The Old Meeting [House] Committee dined at Captain Prince’s farm and thus ends the year 1776. FINIS.