Eleazar Wheelock, letter, to John Thornton, 1772 July 25


abstractWheelock writes that he has drawn on Thornton for 50 pounds to discharge Occom’s debts in the hopes that Occom will go on a mission. He relates other news regarding Occom and Mr. Jewett, and notes that building is complete on the mills and a large barn.

handwritingInformal handwriting is small and crowded, but mostly legible.

paperTwo single sheets are in good condition, with light-to-moderate staining, creasing and wear. The outside edges of one and two recto appear to have been trimmed, and it is possible that the two separate sheets were once part of a larger sheet folded in half to make four pages.


noteworthyWhen Wheelock refers to the "Boston Board," he is referring to either the Boston Board of the Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge, or the The Company for Propagation of the Gospel in New England and the parts adjacent in America. This document is likely a draft; in the trailer on two verso, Wheelock notes that the letter was not sent.

  very dear & Hond ſir. 
I inform'd You in my late Letters of my  Propoſal to M.r Occom to accept a Miſsion with Meſsrs  Brainerd, Maccluer, & Friſbie, to Muſkingham, and that I  had ordered the Latter to viſit M.r Occom in their way and  diſcourſe him on the Head. Two days ago I rec.d a Lettr from  M.r Maccluer dated at Mohegan June 30. and another from  M.r Occom of July 3.d — by the former I underſtand M.r Occom  has much retrieved his Character, & recoverd the charity of good  people — M.r Maccluer much deſires he may be incouraged in  this Miſsion, & thinks the Cauſe may be much Served by it—  M.r Occom Shews no averſion to take the Journey, with  Jacob Fowler his Brother in Law who was educated in this  School, and is an accompliſh'd Youth; now keeping School  at the Sea Side, in the pay of the Boſton Board, & whom Mr  Occom [illegible]thinks was [illegible]savingly converted laſt Winter, and is very  warm in Religion, & thinks will become a Preacher Soon,  but he ^M.r Occom^ will not goe on this Miſsion, 'till his Debts, which Mr  Macclu[illegible]re says are ₤50 or 60 are diſcharged, ([illegible]  [illegible])
I am of Opinion that as things are it is beſt that he be  incouraged, and hope the cauſe of the Redeemer may be  Served by it. —
I have informd You of the Difficulty of my doing it  while his own or Neighbouring Tribes ^who^ are all under the Care of  the Boſton Board, are his only Object — it will not fail to  give Offence, and they will have a better color for reproach‐  ‐ing my Conduct, and Me as a buiſsy Body in their matters, than  I think I have yet given them — Tho' the Rev.d M.r Jewet who  has the paſtoral Charge of that Tribe by the Appointment of  that Board, has been much Offended at my favouring M.r Occoms ^[below]mi^   
 Miniſtrations among them So far as I have done. If M.r Occom  will make other Tribes his Object my way in that Reſpect  will be clear — I have fully told M.r Occom of this, & yet he  Seems to think hard of me that he is not Supported by the  Money which he was So inſtrumental to collect.
In Order therefore to prepare M.r Occom's way for this  propoſed Miſsion, I have drawn on You ſir, according to  your generous Direction in Several Letters for ₤50. ſterlg  in Fav.r of M.r Occom — I Suppoſe he will likely Sell  the Bill to M.r Nathl Backus, by whom I believe he  will be as honeſtly & generously treated, as by any man at  all —
M.r Occom also informs me that Joseph ^Johnſon^ whom I educated at  great Expence, (& Who has Since coſt me much Sorrow) and is a  youth of pregnant parts and well accompliſhed, was hopefully  made a new man laſt winter — if this be So he is my [illegible].
M.r Ripley Sat out 17th Inſtt on his Tour to Canada with Mr  Taylor his Companion — Yesterday I recd a Lettr from dear  M.r Auſtin dated Albany July 1[illegible][guess: 1], I Suppose on his way from  Montreal to Connecticut, by which I conclude m.r Ripley will  fail of the Benefit of his Aſsiſtance
He Says the popiſh prieſts will do all they can in Oppoſition  to my purpoſe — Yet thinks there is Some Incouragement.
I hant Time to write my Hond Patrons, I truſt you will,  if you think any thing worthy of it in the Several things I have  hinted from Time to time, communicate them as you have opportuty.
I have finiſhd the Mills, of which I wrote yo, to my mind, &  have a proſpect they will well anſwer my Expectation — and  almoſt finiſhed a Barn of 55 feet long & 40 wide
The crop upon the ground looks well — & Nothing that I ſee  in the whole affair Diſcouraging. My Hope is in God Alone.
I wrote yo of the concert for Prayer agreed upon with y.e  Miſsionaries on Saturday & Sabath Evenings between the Hours  of 6. & [illegible][illegible][guess: 7] O'Clock, for the Succeſs of their Miſsions; at which  Time I doubt not we ſhall meet you and others who ^[below]long^   
long for the Advancement of the Redeemers Kingdom,  at the Throne of divine Grace, upon that occaſion. in  which pleaſe remember.   
Much Hond Sir.   Yours in the Deareſt Bonds, &c   Eleazar Wheelock 
^[below]John Thornton Esqr.^   
To Jno Thornton Esqr   Not Sent   1772