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Samson Occom, journal, 1785 May 1 to October 3

ms-number: 785301

abstract: Occom's account of his travels as an itinerant preacher over the course of several months in 1785.

handwriting: Occom's hand is mostly clear and legible. As is common with Occom's writing, there are uncrossed t's and crossed uprights; these have been corrected by the transcriber.

paper: Small sheets folded into a booklet and bound with thread or twine are in good-to-fair condition, with light-to-moderate staining and wear that results in a minimal loss of text.

ink: Brown ink varies in intensity throughout. It appears that the pen nib changes as well.

noteworthy: This journal picks up where manuscript 784308 leaves off. On five recto, the identity of Mr. and Mrs. Carter's daughter is uncertain, and so she has been left untagged. On eight recto, the identity of Brother Moss's daughter is uncertain, and so she has been left untagged. On 11 recto, the name of the Indian Town is uncertain and so it has been left untagged. On 14 recto, the identity of Talitha's daughter is uncertain and so she has been left untagged. An editor, likely 19th-century, has overwritten the journal in spots. These edits have not been transcribed. Mention is made of the death of Occom's daugher Talitha. Individuals who are not named, and whose identities cannot be deduced, are not tagged.


May 1: 1785: Sabbath N [illegible][guess: 11]

Preach'd at Mrs Fitches and
there was a large Number of
well behavd People, and the
word of god fell among the People
with Some weight and Some were
much afected eſpecially in the
fore part of the Day, after meet
ing, took Dinner with the Fami
ly and after that went Home
felt Some what Spent, and went
to Be[illegible]d Soon —

May 10:

a number of us went
to Seabrook to fiſhing, a Storm
met us the next Day, and we stopt
at New London,

May 13:

went on our way &
got to the Fiſhing, near night
and we Stayed there till 27
and we had prety good Luck

the 28:

we got home and found
our folks well,

Sabbath may 29:

had meetg
at Harrys, and we had a

a Penitant meetig, I Sayd a
few words from the Braſen
Serpent, and we felt the
Power of god, I think,

June 5:

had meeting at Harys
and I Spoke from Rom 4:7

June 12: Sab

Henry and I
went to Pawquonk and I
preachd in Mr Reuben
Palmer
s Meeting Houſe and
there was Conſiderable num
ber of People, and they attend
ed with great Solemnity, both
parts of the Day, I Spoke from
1 Sam 22:2: and Rom 4:7
and after meeting went ot Mr
Carter
s, and took Dinner there
and after eating we Sot away
for[illegible] Home, and got a little
after Sun Set, —

June 18:

Henry and went from
Mohegan for Chartes Town
and we got a little before

Night, we put up at James
Niles
s, and were kindly re
ceivd by them, —

Sab: June 19:

in the morng
[illegible] went to See old Samuel
Niles
, and found him very
low, and I believe he never
will get up again, went
back to James, and then to
the meeting Houſe, and was
a Number of People, but
not large, they had but
a Short Notice of my Com[illegible][guess: i]g
and I preachd from Rom 4 7
in the after Noon, we went
to Sam Niless, and I preachd
from Daniel 5:25 in the
evening metc at another [illegible]Houſe
and John Cooper was there
he Spoke, and he diſ[illegible][guess: cov]erd a
party Spirit, uafter wards I
reharſd the Hiſtory of Joſeph

and then returnd to James
Niles
s, and Lodged there
once more,

Monday, June the 20:

Sun
about 2 Hours high Deacon
Henry Quaquaquid and I
left Chartes Town and went
on Homeward, and we go
Home Some Time in the even
ing, found our Families
well —

Sab: 26:

went to
New Concord, and preachd in
Mr Troops meeting Houſe —
from Mat 4: 10: in the after
Noon from 1 Corin 18:22 and
was a larger number people
and they attended with great
Solemnity, after meting
went to See Mr Troop and
found him in low State of
Health, Supped with them
and Soon after Supper

took leave of them and
redturnd homeward, Calld
at Mr Jabaz Crokers and
found in him in hard Sick
neſs full of Pain & diſtreſs
prayd with him, and after
Prayer went on, and I Stopt
at Mrs Fitches and Taried
there all Night, next
Morning after Breakfaſt
went on and got home
about 9 found my well
three Days ago I heard a
heard heavy News, my
poor Talitha is Dead &
Buried, the Lord the Sove
reign of the Univerſe
Sanctify this Diſpenſa
tion to me and to all my
Family —

Tueſday, June 28:

a Young
man Came to me from lower

part of groton in greateſt
diſtreſs of Soul I ever Saw
any one this long while and
he wanted I Shoul go with him
to groton rite away, and I
told him I woud be there on the
next Day —

June 29:

Rode down to new
London
. and So over to groton &
a meeting at Mr Burringtons
and there was a goodly num
ber of People and they attend
ed the word with great Solemn
attention, and the Young man
that Came to Mohegan for me
was greatly afected, broke
out in bitterneſs of Soul, and
Cryed for mercy, Severayl gave
him a word of Exhortation —
I Lodged in the Same Houſe

Thirdsday June 30:

about 11
Capt Lathem Came to the H—
where I was, and I went Home
with his directly, Dined [illegible]With
him, and his wi[illegible]fe they

have no Children; near a
bout 3 went to Mr Giddion
Saunders
's and there was a Num
ber of People got totgether &
we began the worſhip of god
Directly, and I preachd to
there [below]˄ was an Effectionate
attention, and after I had done
Speaking, Mr Avery gave
a word of Exhortation, and
then he prayd and when he
had done the People Sot Still
and wou'd not go away, it
Seem'd they wanted to hear
more, they were hungry af
ter the word, and So we gave
out more [illegible]Exhortations, and
after a while they went a
way with heavy hearts, and
Some of 'em wanted I Should
preach to them again on
the next Day, but I told them
I wanted to get home, to attend

upon other People, where
I had engagd, — Lodgd at
Mr Saunderss, and was very
kindly entertaind, —

Fryday July 1: 1785

after
break[illegible]faſt took my leave of
the Family in Peace and
good Friendſhip; Calld at
Capt Robert Lathems but
was not at Home, only his
wife, Sot there a while, and
then went to the Ferry and
went over to the City of New
London
, and So on home
ward, got home about 3
o:c: and found no one at
Home —

July 3: 1785:

on Sabb Sot out
Early in the morning for Pau
quonk
, Mr Eliphalet Liſter
went with me, we got to the
Place Some Time before meet

meeting Call on Elder Palmer
and there took Breakfaſt, &
then we went to meeting and
was Conſiderable Number of
People, Mr Leſter preachd,
[illegible]And in the after N[illegible]oon I
preach, and towards night
we went about 3 miles fur
ther towards Colcheſter Town
and there I preach again
to a large number of People
and both Elder Palmers were
there the Father and the Son
and there was Solemn attenti
on — after meeting went back
with Mr Abel Palmer and I
Stopt at Mr Carters and Lodged
there, and had very agree
able Converſat[illegible]ion with Mrs
Carter
and one of their
Daughters, in Religious
Concerns, went to bed late,

Monday July 4:

got up very
early and took my Horſe
and went Home, — got Home
about 10: and found my
geting ready to go to Pauqua
nunk
a fiſhing, and I went with
Directly, got to the Place fbefore
night —

July 9:

Saturday went to New
Concord
, got to Deacon Huntingtons
about Sut Set, and was kindly
recevd and entertaian'd Lodged there

Sab: July 10,

Deacon Huntington
and I went to meeting, and there
was a great Number People Col
lected together, and I preachd
from Luke 12: 21: in the after
Noon from John 12: 21: and the
made me a Collection, — towards
Evening preachd at Deacon
Huntington
's, — and Soon after
meeting I went to bed, but did
feel well, and was reſtleſs all
Night, —

July 11:

got up early
and they would have me Stay

Breakfaſt, and I Conſented, &
after eating ſot off for Home
got Home about 10: and found
all my Family well, —

July 16

Sot off from Home for
Preſton, got to Deacon John Avry
Juſt after Sun Set, and kindly
receivd by them Lodged there

Sab: July 17:

went to meeting
with the Deacon, and Mr Park
preachd in the Morning, —
in the after noon I preachd
from [gap: omitted] after I had
Mr Park ad[illegible][guess: m]iſd: the Sacra‐
ment of the Lord Su[illegible]pper and
I partook [illegible]With them, and it
was a Comfortable Seaſon
to the Children of God. Some
old Chriſtians broke forth in
Praiſes and adorations [illegible]to god
and they encouragd one a
nother to on in their C[illegible]hriſti
an Courſe. after meeting
I went directly Home, went
with Mr Story of Norwich

Stopt at his Houſe, and took
Supper with him, and was
kindly treated, Soon after
Supper I went on my way
god Home Some Time in the
Evening, and went to bed qui
etly Thanks be to god for his
goodneſs to me and Family
hetherto —

July 24:

Sab: early in the
Morning got up, and got ready
and went [illegible]down to Gales Ferry
and went over to Groton, to
Mr Sanders's and got there
about 9: and was tenderly
receivd by the whole Family
about 10 the People began
to 'gather, and there was a
Number of People Collected
together, and I preachd to
from Luke 102 : 11: and in
the after noon from John 21:22
and I think had Some aſsiſtance
eſpecially in the after noon —

and the People attended with
great Solemnity and affection
I believe many felt the Power
of the word, — I Stayd at Mr
Sa[illegible][guess: u]ders
s and had Some Exer
ciſe with Several, in the even[illegible]
ing with my Chriſtian Cards
and after that went to bed
quietly — Monday after break
faſt went off after taking affec
tionate Leave of them, and Stopt
at one Mr John Shoolers to See
a Sick woman, found her
very much Diſtreſt both Body and
Mind, I gave her Some Coun
ill and preſt to believe on
the Lord Jeſus Chriſt, and
with her and then
went on my way, got
near noon, and reſted a
few Minutes and [illegible]took Horſe
a gain and down to New
London
, to bu[illegible]y Corn and
got home again Some Time
in the Evening —

Sabbath [illegible] July 31:

went to Mrs
and preachd there twice from
1 Corin: 7: 29: 30 and 1 Corin 4: 7
and there was not great many
People and they attended well
towards night I went to Mr Chapels
and preachd there to a few People
and as Soon as the meeting was
done, I went Home, and got H–
afterabout Daylight in —

Sabbath Augt 7:

Sot of from
Home and went to upper part
of Long Society, got to Mr Moſss
near 10 and from there we
went to Mr Woodworths, and there
was a great Multitude of People
and preach'd to them from
Daniel, 5: 25 and John 8: 47
Toward Night I preachd at
Mr Moſss: from 1 Cor 7: 29 and there was great
attention, and many were
Deeply affected, and Some
broke forth in Praiſes, eſpe
cially in the Evening, —

I Lodged at Mr Moſss and
Brother London a Negroe
preacher was with us all
this Day and this evening
and he and Severy of the
Young Christian Lodged at
Mr Moſss — Monday Morning
we got up early in the
morning, and London and
I were Seting off, but Brother
woud have us Stay to Break
faſt and we Conſented, and
after Breakfaſt we Sung
and Prayed and the Power
of god Came done amongſt
us and the Young Chriſtians
were filld with Love to god
and to one another, and one
of Brother Moſss Daughters
who met with Conſolation
laſt Night was greatly
filld with Divine Love
and we had a Bleſsed meet
ing — and we parted in Love
Peace and Fellowſhip —

and I got Home about 12: and
found my Family well the
Lord be Praiſed —

Sab: Augt 14:

went from
Home early in the morning for
Long Society, got there before
10 [illegible] Call on Mr Jonathan Smith
and took Breakfaſt with them
and then went to meeting
and there was a great numbr
of People and I preachd to
them from Heb: 4: 2: & 2:Cor 17 V
Some Time after meeting
I went Home, Stopt a while
at Mr Ephraim Storys in the
Langding, and there I Say
Brother London a [illegible]Negro
preacher and they was to
a meeting in the evening
and they woud have me
Stay to meeting, but I did
not, I got Home Some Time
in the evening —

Thirdsday Augt 18:

went
to Mr Poſts at We[illegible][guess: ec]us Hill
& Siſter Beth with me and preach to a Number of
People and they attended well
with great Sobriety. — after
meeting Drank Tea with
them and then we Sot off for
Home, got Home Some Time
in the Evening, Thanks be
to god —

Sab Augt 21:

went from
Home very Early in the morning
for Pauquonk, got there Some
Time before meeting, Calld up on
Mr Carter, and was kindly re‐
ceivd, by the Family, and took
Breakfaſt, and after that
went to meeting, and there
was a goodly number of People
and I preachd to them, from [below]Acts 2:37
and the People attended with
gravity and Sobriety, Especially
the Young People — Soon after
meeting I went Home, and got
H in the [illegible]Duſk of the Evening

Sab Augt 28

Sot off from my
Houſe before Sun riſe and
went on towards north part
of Preſton, got to Mr Daniel
Moſs
es before meeting, and we
went on to Mr Woodworths and
found a great Number of People
Collected togegether, and I preachd
to them, from Luke 16:5 and
Matt 11:28: and there was great
Solemnity and affection Soon
after meeting, I went to Brother
Moſs
s: and preachd there, before
Night and there was a Croud
of People, from Luke 7:23:
Mr Heart was there, — I Lodgd
at the Same Houſe, Monday

Augt 29:

after Breakfaſt Br
Moſs
and I went to ſee Mr Heart
found him very kind and friend
ly, went from there to Mr John
Putnam
s and there I preachd
to a Small Number of People
but there was great Solmen
ity among the People, took Dr

there and after Dinner went
to one Mr Fitchs 3: or 4. miles
and there I preachd to a great
Number of People and [illegible][guess: w]the word
of god fell with weight upon
the People, and I believe they
will not forget it Soon —
after meeting I went Home
with old Mr Fitch, about a
mile and an Half Eaſt of
Long Society Meeting Houſe
and there I Lodged, and was
Tvery kindly Treated —
Tuſeday morning after
Breakfaſt took leave of the
Family and went on home
ward, got Home Juſt before
noon and found no Body at Home

Sepr 3:

Saturday towards night
left Home, and went to lower part
of groton, was detain'd Some Time
at gales Ferry, but got over a
bout Sun Set, and reachd to Mr
Saunders
before Day Light in
and was receivd by the whole Fa
with all Kindneſs, Lodged there

Sepr 4:

Sab about 10: a great
Number of p[illegible]eople Collected toge
ther and I preachd to them from
John 11:28: in the after noon from
1 Croni 29: 5: and there was very
deep, Solemn, and Silent attention
the People lookd as if they were
araind before the Judgement
Seat of god, I believe they felt
the Power of the Truth of the word
of god, — Soon after meeting I
Din'd with the People of the Houſe —
and then I went to one Mr Jabez
Smith
s about 3: miles Southward
I got there about Sun Set, I had
no thoughts of haveing a meeting
but preſently after I got there
2 or 3 Neighbours were there, and
they whiſperd among themſelves &
preſently they aſk'd me whether I
woud preach [illegible]if Neighbours
would Come in, and I told them
I woud I woud, and they, Sent out
to [illegible]give notice, and in about
half an Hour a number of People

Came in So as to fill a large Room
or almoſt, and I Spoke to them
from John 4:10: and the People
attended well, — Lodged here this Night
and was kindly entertaind — Monday

Sepr 5

very in the morning I got up
and had my Horſe Catch'd, and I Sot off
and directed my Courſe to Capt Robert
Lathem
s got there Juſt as they were
geting Breakfaſt ready, Sot down
with them, after eating I went to
Mr William Sheffields, I had a little
Temporal Buſineſs with him, but
I found him not he was juſt gone
from Home, — and So I went back
to Capt R. Lathems took dinner
with them, and after Dinner took
leave of 'em and went to went
to Mr Sheffields again and he was
at Home, I did my Buſineſs
with him; and directly went
to the Ferry, meet my good
Friend Mr Saunders, and he
gave me a piece of money &
I was very lo[illegible]th to take it but
he woud make me take it

and So I was obligd to it, and the
good Lord reward him and his
family a Thouſand Fold, —
went over to the City of New London
met Mr Smith, and we did our
Buſineſs, and So we parted in
good Friendſhip — I went on
my way, and Sopt at Capt Wheelers
and Lodged there — Tueſday M
Sot off very early, and got home
once more, well, and and my Famy was
much Scatterd, what was at H
were well, the Lord be Praiſed —
for his goodneſs to us thus far —

Sabbath Sepr 11

got up very early
in the Morning and Sot of from Home
and went to Long Society, got there
Some Time before the People Collect
Stopt at Mr John Smith, was kindly
receivd, near 11: went to the Houſe
of Worſhip, and there a great Num
ber of People, and attended with great
and Solemn attention, preachd
from Isaa v: 3: 4 & 1 Peter 1: 24
Directly after meeting, I with

Mr Fitch and eat with them, and
after eating went to Mr Downs &
preachd there to Conſiderable num
ber of People and they behaved well
I was much paind in Left Shol
ders Spoke from Lamen 3: 40
Lodgd at the Same Houſe, and was
kindly entertaind Monday very
early got up and got my mare
and went on, Stopt at Mr Fitchs
and took Breakfaſt with them, and
Soon after I went on Homeward, and
I got˄ about 11: found my Family
was as Common, Thus far the Lord
has led me on, and glory be to his
Holy Name — Reſted a while, &
about 3: in the after noon, took
up my Mare again, and went
to Nahantick in Lyme, to See the
Sick, got to Rope Ferry juſt after
Sun Sit, and heard, my Aunt
widow Hannah Juſtice was
Dead and Buried. [illegible]She died Satur
Night and Buried on Sabbath
got to the Indian Town in the
Duſk of the Evening, found my
Couſin Isaac
his wife and all
his Children Conſiſting four were

all very Sick — Prayed with them
and then home with Couſin
Joſeph
, and Lodged there,
Tueſday, after Br found Isaacs
Family little eaſy, Saw Some
other Sick — about 12. I preachd
in Couſin Joſephs Houſe to few
People — about 3: Sot off for
Home, got there juſt after
Daylight in —

Saturday Sepr 17:

Some Time
in the after noon left Home and
went to Preſton, got to Deacon
Avery
s in the Duſk of the eveng
and was affectionately receivd
by him and Lodged there,

Sab. 18:

about 10 went to M
and there was a Conſiderable
number of People — Mr Park
preachd in the morning, and
in the after I preachd from
Luke Concerning the Prodacal
Son — Directly after Sermon
Mr Park adminiſter'd the order
nance of the Lords Supper.

and I partook with them once
more; and Directly after I
went the Indian Town of groton
with Jo: Sunſummon, and had
a meeting there and I believe
the Lord withwas preſent with us
the Chriſtians were much
movd, Some Time in the
evening, we broke the meetg
and after a while I went
to bed Quietly — the Lord be
praiſed —

Monday Sepr 19

Sot of for Home Early in the morning
after I took good leave of the Family
got home about noon, found my F
well, — Thirsday about 9 in
the morning Sot of from Home, for
onoyda, and went up to lower part
of Canterbury tgot to Mr Clarks
about 3. in the after noon, and
the People had got together and
Mr Clarke had begun the meetg
he was at Prayer, — and I preachd
and there was great Solemnity &
affection, and many Tears flow
down freely — Soon after meeting
went with Mr Cleark to his Houſe

and took Dinner with them —
and the People Collected together
again in the Evening, in Mr
Clarke
s Houſe, and we had a
Comfortable meeting, many were
melted down with Love, and
they broke out in adoration &
Praiſe, and Some Time in the
evening we parted in Love, Peace
and I believe in Divine Fellowſhi[below]p
and then went to bed peaceably
the Lord be Praiſed —

Fryday Sepr 23

had a little
Exerciſe with my Cards with the
Family, and it was Comfortable
Seaſon with us, and after Break
faſt I took Brotherly leave of
them, and went on my way
and got to Mr Poſt's in Cranck about 1. and
took Dinner, and about 3 I Sot of
again, juſt Call on Mrs Pomroy
and So paſt on, and got to one
Mr Poſt's a little of Galiad Meet
ing Houſe
, and I was very kind
ly entertaind, — Saturday morn
ing we Sot off very early in the
morning, and went on our way
got to Esqr Wellss about 10

Sot a while, and Esqr was very
urgent to have me Stay over the
Sabbath, but I Coud not, and So we
went on, and it was rainey kind
of the weather, Juſt before Night we
got to Indian Place in Farmington
and put up at Daniel Moſsucks, &
the Indians were well, there were
but eight Families of Indians, —

Sabbath Sepr 25:

preachd 3 Times
many white People were together
and they attended well — here I met
with george Pharaoh and his Fami
from Long Island, they were moving
up to onoyda Country, —

Monday Sepr 26:

we Sot of about
9: and got to Brother Phineas
about 2: and here I ha[illegible]de the dole
ful acount of the Death of my
Daughter Talitha, a mornful
and heavy addition to all Troubles
and Sorrows, went to See my poor
Daughters youngeſt Child, and
it was a Sorrowful and very
affecting Sight — went bac
had a meeting with the People
on the next Day twice, and the
People were very Solemn —

This Night Lodged at one Mr
Safford
's the woman is extraordi
nary in Chriſtianity of great
underſtanding, and Experiance

Wedneſday Sepr 28

Sot of early
having taken leave of the Fam
and I went on my way, Sot
at Brother Phins took Break
faſt with them, Mr Willſon
was with me a Son in Law
to old uncle Chaucum, Soon
after eating took leave of the
Family and we went on our
way; Stop at Mr Chaucums —
and here Mr Woodbridge the
BPreacher among this People
overtook me, and was extream
ly urgetnt to have me Stop to
preach once more but
I d[illegible][guess: e]nyd him, and we paſt
on, he went with us a little
way and then parted in Peace
and we went on, and got
to Canaan Juſt Night and
we went to Mr Joſeph Marſhals
a miniſter of the goſper

and Lodged there found
his wife very poorly will
Lameneſs —

Thirday Sepr 29

got up very
early and Sot of and got Stockbridge
about 3 in the after noon, and
Call'd at Capt Yoke's but he was
not at Home, and moſt all the
Indians were Scaterd, what were
left of thoſe that are gone up to
Onoyda, — about two thirds of them
are gone up to Onoyda — Juſt be
fore Sun Sit went to See Mrs
Kirkland
, and was a little while
and then returnd,, Call on Mrs Serjant
and Lodged there, Mr Serjant was
not at Home —

Fryd Sepr 30

after Breakfaſt
went back to Capt Yokes, and
was there Some Time, and then
Sot off, — Sottopt a while at a
Tarvern, and here I met with
one Capt Baldwin of New Canaan
and he urgd to have me Stop at
his place to have a meeting in
the evening, and I Conſented, and

went on to Richmond, and got
there before noon Stopt at Mr
Miller
s and old aquaintaince
of mine, found them all well,
din'd With them, and Soon after
Dinner went on our way, and
got to New Canaan Juſt before
sun Set, Calld on Colo Whiting
he we was Buſy, and So I paſt on
reachd Capt Baldwins, in the
Evening the People began to ga
ther and there was a great Num
ber of People Collected, and I
preachd to them from gExod
the words go forward &c — and I
had but little Senſe of Divine
things Yet the People attended
with gravity — Lodged at the
same Houſe, —

Saturday, Octr 1: 1785

Sot of
early, and Stopt at Mr Camps
and took[illegible] Breakfaſt with him
and Sent of James before me —
after a while I Sot of, and about
11 oc Calld at a publick Houſe
the mans Name was Robbinſon

and he knew me and some o
thers and another Came in, and
they began to impertune and
urge very hard to have me
Stope to keep Sabbath them, &
was a man deſired me before
to go so far as to green Buſh
and Mr Camp deſird me alſo
to Stop there and keep Sabbath
at one Esqr Woodworths, — and
finily Concluded to Stop at Mr
Robinſon
's to preach there
in the Morning, and so go to
green Buſh in the after noon—
and so lodged in Mr Robin‐
ſon
's — The Place is Call'd
Phillips Town

Sabbath Octor 2:

The People
collected together, and there was
a great Aſsembly, and I preachd
to them from [illegible][guess: 1] Epiſt V:10: and
Soon after meeting took dinner
and then went of to Esqr Wood‐
worth
s in green Buſh, Mr
Robinſon
and another gentllen

went with me, and we got
there about 4 PM: and there
was Number of People got to
gether, and I began the Service
Directly, and there a Solemn
attention, — The People Collected
Some thing for me, Lodgd in
here this Night and was kind
ly entertaind, — here I met Mr
[illegible][guess: H]ally from Norwich he is
preaching in a Place Calld
New Betheleham — in the
evening a Number of us had
agreeable Exerciſe with my
Chriſtian Cards and after that
went to bed Quietly —

Monday Octr 3:

was at Esqrs
till 12: then went to New Bethm
Stopt at Mr Townſends and
there[illegible] took dinner, and then
kep on, [illegible]Got to the Place a
bout 2: and a great Number
of People had got together, and
began the meeting directly, and
at [gap: worn_edge] went back to Esqr [gap: worn_edge]
Occom, Samson

Samson Occom was a Mohegan leader and ordained Presbyterian minister. Occom began his public career in 1742, when he was chosen as a tribal counselor to Ben Uncas II. The following year, he sought out Eleazar Wheelock, a young Anglo-American minister in Lebanon, CT, in hopes of obtaining some education and becoming a teacher at Mohegan. Wheelock agreed to take on Occom as a student, and though Occom had anticipated staying for a few weeks or months, he remained with Wheelock for four years. Occom’s academic success inspired Wheelock to open Moor’s Indian Charity School in 1754, a project which gave him the financial and political capital to establish Dartmouth College in 1769. After his time with Wheelock, Occom embarked on a 12-year mission to the Montauk of Long Island (1749-1761). He married a Montauk woman, Mary Fowler, and served as both teacher and missionary to the Montauk and nearby Shinnecock, although he was grievously underpaid for his services. Occom conducted two brief missions to the Oneida in 1761 and 1762 before embarking on one of the defining journeys of his career: a fundraising tour of Great Britain that lasted from 1765 to 1768. During this journey, undertaken on behalf of Moor’s Indian Charity School, Occom raised £12,000 (an enormous and unanticpated amount that translates roughly to more than two-million dollars), and won wide acclaim for his preaching and comportment. Upon his return to Mohegan in 1768, Occom discovered that Wheelock had failed to adequately care for his family while he was gone. Additionally, despite the vast sums of money that he had raised, Occom found himself unemployed. Wheelock tried to find Occom a missionary position, but Occom was in poor health and disinclined to leave his family again after seeing the treatment with which they had met while he was in Britain. Occom and Wheelock’s relationship continued to sour as it became apparent to Occom that the money he had labored to raise would be going towards infrastructure at Dartmouth College, Wheelock’s new project, rather than the education of Native Americans. After the dissolution of his relationship with Wheelock, Occom became increasingly focused on the needs of the Mohegan community and increasingly vocal in criticizing Anglo-Americans’ un-Christian treatment of Native Americans. In September of 1772, he delivered his famous “Sermon on the Execution of Moses Paul,” which took Anglo-American spiritual hypocrisy as one of its major themes, and which went into four printings before the end of the year. In 1773, Occom became further disillusioned when the Mason Land Case was decided in favor of the Colony of Connecticut. The details of the Mason Case are complicated, but to summarize: the Colony of Connecticut had gained control of Mohegan land early in the 18th century under very suspect circumstances, and successfully fended off the Mohegan’s 70-year-long legal challenge. The conclusion of the case came as a blow to the Mohegans, and further convinced Occom of Anglo-American corruption. Along with David Fowler (Montauk Tribe), Occom's brother-in-law, and Joseph Johnson (Mohegan), Occom's son-in-law, Occom helped found Brothertown, an Indian tribe formed from the Christian Mohegans, Pequots, Narragansetts, Montauks, Tunxis, and Niantics. They eventually settled in Oneida country in upstate New York. Occom moved there with his family in 1789, spending the remaining years of his life serving as a minster to the Brothertown, Stockbridge, and Mohegan Indians. Harried by corrupt land agents, the Brothertown and Stockbridge groups relocated to the eastern shore of Lake Winnebago, though Occom died in 1792 before he could remove himself and his family there. Occom's writings and legacy have made him one of the best known and most eminent Native Americans of the 18th century and beyond.

Cooper, John
Niles, Samuel
Niles, Jr., Samuel
Sergeant, Jr., John

John Sergeant Jr., like his father, served as a minister in Stockbridge, MA. In 1773, Stephen West, the minister to the Stockbridge Indians since 1757, decided to leave his post and turned over ministering duties to John Sergeant Jr. Stockbridge, MA, which John Sergeant Sr. helped establish, failed as a Christian Indian town when the Stockbridge Indians lost ownership of their land. When the Oneida Tribe offered the Stockbridgers land in central New York after the American Revolution, many of them moved to the Brothertown and New Stockbridge settlements. The Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge funded Sergeant Jr. in 1787 to continue serving as a minister to the Stockbridge Indians who moved to New York. Sergeant travelled from Stockbridge, MA, to New Stockbridge every year to serve as their minister. In 1788, the Stockbridge Indians at New Stockbridge were divided in their support for Occom or John Sergeant as the town’s minister. Mohican sachem Hendrick Aupaumut led the community members who favored Occom. According to Sergeant, 30 members of the Tribe were in favor of Occom while 50 were in favor of him (later, half of Occom’s supporters defected to Sergeant). The relationship between Sergeant and Occom was contentious, with Occom disliking Sergeant’s manner of preaching. Occom moved to Munhegunnack or New Stockbridge in 1791 and suggests in a letter that many of Sergeant’s supporters were shifting support to Occom. In his sermons, Sergeant blamed the Indians’ loss of land on what he described as their drunkenness and idleness. He suggested that the whites’ encroachment on their lands was God’s punishment for their sins. Sergeant remained the New Stockbridge minister until his death in 1824.

Smith

Unidentified Smith.

Massuck, Daniel

Daniel Massuck was a Farmington Tuxnis who attended Moor’s for a few months in 1762 and fought in the Revolution. His father, Samuel Massuck, had converted to Christianity, and Daniel Massuck was raised as a Christian. The family was prominent in Farmington affairs, and played host to Joseph Johnson on numerous occasions. Both Samuel and Daniel were very involved in the early push to found Brothertown (a composite tribe of Algonquian Indians from the Long Island Sound region, organized and populated largely by former members of Moor’s Indian Charity School): both appear frequently as signatories on letters on the topic, and it was Samuel Massuck who asked for a Connecticut law book to produce the new settlement’s laws. However, neither Samuel nor Daniel actually emigrated to Brothertown (although Luke Massuck, Daniel Massuck’s son or brother, did, for a brief time). Perhaps because they had been brought into the movement by Joseph Johnson, after Joseph Johnson’s death (sometime during the Revolution years) they were no longer invested.

Lester, Eliphalet
Avery, John
Quaquaquid, Henry

Henry Quaquaquid was a Mohegan Indian who was active in both political and religious tribal affairs. In 1742 he, as a counselor, signed a petition that declared John Uncas as the rightful successor of Sachem Mahomet; however, the following year Quaquaquid, along with Occom and nine other counselors, signed Ben Uncas’s counter proclamation. As supporters of Ben Uncas, Occom and Quaquaquid lived in Ben’s Town rather than John’s Town, the home of the Ashpos. Nonetheless, they eventually changed their minds and joined the Ashpos in an effort to counteract tribal corruption and disunion. Around 1760, Ben Uncas III claimed that the rival faction had established Quaquaquid as sachem. Quaquaquid was also involved in the Mason case and acted as a messenger. He sought to protect the Mohegans’ native rights, and in 1785 signed a petition, along with Occom and four others, to the Connecticut General Assembly asking for unrestricted fishing privileges. In 1789, Quaquaquid and Robert Ashpo appealed to the Connecticut Assembly again seeking aid, and as in the original petition, stressed their friendship. Additionally, Quaquaquid often accompanied Occom during his missionary tours, such as those of 1757 and 1785. He also acted as a deacon, possibly at a church that Occom established in Mohegan. Quaquaquid did not move to Brothertown, but remained in Mohegan with his family.

Avery, John

John Avery was born in 1705 in Groton, Connecticut. Avery was chosen to serve as deacon for a Congregationalist church in Preston, Connecticut, and was ordained on August 16, 1747. A study by Avery's ancestors indicates that he was once imprisoned for refusing to pay dues to Connecticut colony's state-sponsored Congregationalist church. He felt his imprisonment was noble, given his aversion to centralized church power. Avery was named lieutenant and then captain of the Preston trainband, the local militia, in 1739 and 1741, respectively. He resigned in 1750. In 1743, Avery was named deputy to the general court. Occom lodged at the home of Avery at least three times when passing through New London. Avery died in 1789 in Preston, Connecticut, and in his will, Avery granted his slave freedom and financial support. Joanna Brooks confuses Deacon John Avery with his son of the same name, who was a clockmaker and silversmith in Preston, Connecticut born in 1732.

Burrington
Chaugham, James

James Chaugham was a Narragansett Indian from Block Island, RI. He married Molly Barber, a white woman from Wethersfield, CT. The couple settled near New Hartford, CT, and had eight children, one of whom, Mercy, married a fugitive slave named Isaac Jacklyn. Their extended family became known as the Lighthouse Tribe.

Croker, Jabez
Justice, Hannah
Latham, Robert

Captain Robert Latham was part of the large, ferry-man and ship-building Latham families of Groton and New London, Connecticut, several of whom Occom mentions in his journals. Robert's father was Daniel Latham, born April 16, 1719 in New London and his mother was Elizabeth. He was the youngest of five. After that, there is no more information about Captain Robert Latham except what we learn from Occom's journals for 1784-89. In his itinerant preaching in the area, Occom held meetings at Captain Latham's house, lodged, dined with and called on Latham and his wife several times, and used his Christian cards for exercises with them, describing them as a "very agreeable and discreet couple." The Captain must have been fond of Occom, because he sent a present of tea to Occom's wife in 1784. Going back and forth between Groton and New London in southern Connecticut required a ferry across the Thames River. Robert was likely a descendant of the first ferryman in this area, Cary Latham, who appears in the record during the 1680s. His successors, William and Thomas Latham, operated a shipyard in Groton where they built and launched ships. In 1807, this became the Latham Brothers company. It is not clear if Robert's title refers to his seafaring or military service. Although there is no mention of a Robert Latham in the records, members of the extended Latham family from Groton served with distinction and were captured, wounded, or killed in the Revolutionary War, participating in the Battle of Groton Heights and the storming of Fort Griswold.

Latham

Mrs. Latham was the wife of Captain Robert Latham, who was part of the extensive Latham family in Groton and New London, Connecticut. She lived in Groton with her husband, who was a friend and supporter of Occom. We know from Occom's journals for 1784-89 that he held meetings at the Lathams' house, lodged, dined with and called on the Lathams on several occasions as he crossed back and forth from Groton to New London on the ferry, which was likely operated by a descendant of Cary Latham, the first ferryman there in the 1680s. Occom notes several intriguing facts about Mrs. Latham: that she "looks quite young," which suggests she was Captain Latham's second wife, that they have no children, and that on occasion -- for example, after William Avery's funeral in January 1786 -- he calls on her specifically .

Lister, Eliphalet
Marshall, Joseph
Moss, Daniel
Niles, James
Saunders, Giddeon
Sergeant, Mary (née Codner)
Palmer, Abel
Palmer, Reuben
Pharoah, George
Brother Phineas
Sheffield, William
Shooler, John
Smith, Jabez

Jabez Smith was a deacon at the Second Baptist Church in Groton, CT, a congregation with strong New Light sympathies. He was very active in the church, and on at least one occasion he opened his home to an extemporaneous religious meeting, at which Occom preached. Smith supported himself via the family farm. The house he built there, in 1783, is still standing and currently serves as a museum.

Smith, Jonathan

Jonathan Smith was a friend of Samson Occom’s who lived in Long Society, a suburb of Norwich, Connecticut. Although Long Society did not have a formally organized church between 1782 and 1786, the town still hosted informal meetings, at several of which Occom preached.

Story, Ephraim
Sunsummon, Jo
Occom, Talitha

Talitha Occom was Samson Occom and Mary Fowler Occom’s sixth daughter. The only primary source references to her are two entries in Samson Occom’s 1785 diary, in which he records her death (June 26th, 1785, and September 26th, 1785). She lived somewhere between Farmington (CT) and Canaan (CT), and had at least one child (possibly at least three: Occom describes visiting her “youngest child.”) Because Talitha does not appear in any other primary source, some scholars have concluded that she did not exist. Joanna Brooks transcribes Talitha as Tabitha (although in manuscript 785301, the letter is very clearly an l rather than a b), and thus places Tabitha’s death at 1785 (although other records indicate that she survived her second husband, Joshua Cooper, who died in 1807), while Laura Murray suggests that Talitha is a metaphor for a daughter’s spiritual death. It is more likely that Talitha really was one of Occom’s daughters. First, Occom does not record the birth of any of his children in his diary, so it is no surprise that only one reference to Talitha survives. Second, Occom seems genuinely distraught about Talitha’s death. It could also be hypothesized that Talitha is a byword for “little girl” or daughter (borrowed from a resurrection story in the Gospel of Mark 5, in which Jesus tells a little girl, “talitha koum,” or, “little girl, get up”), and thus that Occom is writing about the death of a different daughter. However, based on genealogical data, there is no other daughter who could have died in 1785. William DeLoss Love recorded that Talitha was born in 1761, but, as often, it is unclear where he got this data from.

his wife
Woodbridge
Woodworth
Yoke, Jehoiakim

Captain Jehoiakim Yoke is likely a Stockbridge Indian who enlisted with colonial forces during the American Revolution. Yoke rose through the ranks to become the Captain of a company of Indian rangers. It appears that he primarily fought on the war's western front, often against Native Americans loyal to Great Britain, and was a part of the infamous Sullivan Expedition. In response to a number of successful raids by Native allies of the British, George Washington tasked General John Sullivan with destroying Indian villages and decimating Indian food supplies in western New York. By the end of the expedition, General Sullivan’s army had destroyed more than 40 villages. A Captain Jehoiakim Yoke is mentioned in the Revolutionary War writing of David Freemoyer. In Freemoyer’s account, Captain Yoke and Freemoyer’s men were involved in conflicts with Native American troops under the command of the Mohawk leader (and Moor's alumnus) Joseph Brant. In his Revolutionary War journal, Chaplain William Rogers refers to a Captain Jehoiakim, an Indian from Stockbridge. In his entries from June of 1779, Rogers describes an incident where Native allies of the British attempted to reconnoiter the Colonial encampment but were driven away. This Captain Jehoiakim and two other Stockbridge Indians pursued the Native Americans but were unsuccessful in capturing them. William DeLoss Love writes about a Timothy Yokens, who became a captain of a company of Indian rangers. Given the similar descriptions of this Stockbridge Indian captain, it seems that the sources may be referring to the same man, with whom Occom lodged several times in 1786.

Huntington, Christopher IV

Christopher Huntington (IV) was a physician and deacon in New Concord, CT (Bozrah, CT), a satellite parish of Norwich. He was one of Eleazar Wheelock’s cousins. Occom seems to have struck up a friendship with Deacon Huntington on his later travels; this may suggest that the deacon was a New Light or even a Baptist.

Avery, William

William Avery was born in 1724 to the prominent Avery family of Groton, Connecticut. From January 1768 until his death, Avery served as Groton's town clerk and treasurer. During the American Revolution, Avery served on several war committees. In 1779, he represented Groton at a general convention in Hartford, and then served on a committee to secure bounties for Revolutionary soldiers by selling Groton "public lands." From 1772 until 1810, North Groton did not have an official minister, and South Groton did not have one between 1798 and 1810; it appears that religious activity waned during this time. In his journal for 1785, however, Occom recalls an experience preaching in Groton, where Avery followed his sermon with an exhortation, an extemporaneous outpouring by a layperson that in New Light churches of the time often followed the more formal sermon. Occom notes that the audience was so rapt on this occasion that they did not want to leave, and begged Occom to preach to them again. Avery died at the age of 63 and was buried in the Starr Cemetery in Groton.

HomeSamson Occom, journal, 1785 May 1 to October 3
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