Hezekiah Calvin, letter to Eleazar Wheelock, 1768 March


abstractCalvin confesses to a troubled mind and to regret at having considered marrying at too young an age. He asks permission to go home.

handwritingFormal handwriting is clear and legible.

paperSingle, medium-sized sheet is in good condition, with light-to-moderate staining, creasing and wear.

inkDark-brown. The nib of the pen appears to change midway through one recto.

noteworthyOn one verso, an unknown hand that may or may not be Calvin's has started and abandoned an address.

signatureThe signature is abbreviated.

  Revend Doc..r 
These Lines I write in order to inform you under  my undsteadyneſs of Mind, what it is, that so much besets me  in thoſe most horrid Crimes of lately, is (1st) becauſe I have  ^[left]thought^ myself past hopes of forgiveneſs from God, & that I could not  make myself any better after it. & that my Days were but  few, & that thoſe few I intended to spend to serve Satan;  & to take what pleaſure I could here on Earth, while I tar‐  ryed here in the Woreld, such were my wicked thoughts.  ^[left]2dly^. My Mind has been uneaſy, but being some bashful I had it not  in my heart to tell, but thought in myself to break a way  privately, & yet I cant tell now without blushing, but think‐  ing it my Duty, it constrains me to break forth in this  manner, Wretched now that I am, that ever I thought of  a Conjugal state when I was, & am yet Young for that state  which has Continually been in my Breast since the Dor  encouraged me in it,(I do'nt mean to reflect on the Docr)  but on myself, being so foolish as to entertain such a  thought in my Breast, then being so Young. I must  own that, that ^it^ was a Strong Motive in my misbehaving  at Fort Hunter among the Mohawks; nothing was in  my thoughts but being Mar–d, & My thoughts being  captivated with this, has been a strong Motive to get  me into intemperace, thinking I should be turned  away from the School, & so it was from one Crime  to another hoping the same, but what a sordid  thoughts are theſe attempting such an Action  as this without the Doc.rs knowledge &c 
There is something that makes me want to go home,  what, I cant tell, Home is in my Mind all the time  I want to go Home soon & see my Relations, & it seems  to me to Tarry home a while or all the Time, & let me see  if that I am able to support myself, I have tarryed upon  Charity long enough, when I have had no more Gratitude  to my Benefactors than I have had done, but all prove  to the Contrary, instead of being grateful, I am as ungrate‐  ful as a Beast, which lays near to my Mind I had rather  go home & be turn'd out of the School which I have  thought has been my Portion for some time I am  uneaſy while I am here & think upon home, if  the Doc.r is pleaſ'd to give me liberty to I will go, but  with much shame & Contempt of myself, &c 
   I remain Your Undutiful   & Ungrateful Servant H Calvin 
[bottom]From Hez: Calvin   March 1768 
 For the Reverend  Mr Eleazer Wheelock D. D.   Lebanon  ^[right]T^  ^[right]To—^  ^[right]The Reverend^