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Samson Occom, journal, 1765 November 21

ms-number: 765621.6

abstract: Occom details the events of his time in Great Britain.

handwriting: Occom's hand is largely clear and legible. There are several uncrossed t’s, crossed l’s, undotted i’s, and dotted numeral I’s; these have been corrected by the transcriber. In several instances, Occom has dotted an e; although it is uncertain whether he intended to correct an e to an i or vice versa, the transcriber has used the correct spelling in each case. In cases where it is uncertain as to whether or not Occom is purposely indenting, transcriber has used her discretion.

paper: Several small sheets are folded into a book with a sewn binding and marbled-paper cover. The paper is in good condition, with light-to-moderate staining and wear.

ink: Brown-black.

noteworthy: There are red pencil marks throughout. Another hand, likely 19th-century, has underlined various names and words throughout in black ink. This editor's changes and additions have not been transcribed. On 12 recto, at the bottom of the page, the same hand has written “(see W–d vol 3. p. 339)” possibly a reference to the journals of George Whitefield. Beginning with 26 verso, the text is upside-down in relation to the first 24 pages of the journal. On 27 verso, Occom notes that he has written to “a Negro Girl Boston.” It is highly likely that this refers to the poet Phillis Wheatley. Place and person names that are not legible have not been tagged.

events: Fundraising Tour of Great Britain, Occom’s inoculation

Modernized Version -- deletions removed; additions added in; modern spelling and capitalization added; unfamiliar abbreviations expanded.

Nineteeth-century editor not transcribed.Not transcribed.

Mohegan November 21: 1765

The Honorable Commissioners
In Connecticut New England for
propagating Christian Knowledge and
Literature among the Indians
ing Maturely consulted the expediency
of Sending Some fit person to Europe
to Cali[illegible][guess: ect] assistance from God's People
at Home in this Heavy and good Work —
and appointed the Rev. Nathaniel
to go — and thought it
good to Send me to acompany him —
and accordingly, not Doubting the
Call of god, and my Duty to go, on
Thursday the 21 of November as above;
in obedience to the Strange Call
of Providence, having Commited
myself Family and Friends to
the Care of Almighty God, took
leave of them about 11 A:M: and
went on my Journey towards Boston

Boston in order to take a
voyage from thence to Europe

Saturday November 23

at Boston about 3 in the
afternoon, and put up at
Mr. Moses Peck's and was
very kindly received by him
— on Wednesday following Mr.
, with whom I was to tra­
vel returned to Boston from
Portsmouth, met with good
encouragement by Friends
Eastward, he Brought with
him, almost Enough for our
passage, — Here we stayed
in Boston near 5 weeks, —
Friends in this place to the
affair we are upon appear
as near and Sincere as
ever and increase Daily —

The adversaries Stand at
a distance Like Shemei,
But they don't Speak a
loud as they did, they now
Contrive their Projects in
Secret, — and it is supposed
they are preparing whips
for us (Letters) to
Send to Europe by the Same
Ship, we are to go in —

Monday December 23

9 in the Morning went
abroad in Boston Packet
a Ship, John Marshall
Capt., and at 9 and half
we Spread Sail to wind — Trust
ing in the Living god — there was
four passenger of us Mr. John
and Mr. Thomas Brom­
of Boston, Mr. Whitaker
and I —

we had very agreeable Company,
The worship of god was carried on
Daily, and had a Sermon every
Sabbath, the goodness of god is very
great to us, — we had favourable
Winds except 3 Short Spells of hard
gale, we lay tow, and when we
got within 200 Leagues of Lands
, moderate easterly winds
met us, And stopped us 20 days
and remarkable warm weather
we had most of the Time — and
then we had Some favourable
winds, — and Sabbath the 2nd day
of February 1766
about 10 in the
morning we discovered the land
of England, — and the wind head
ed us again, and the next Day
which was the 3 of February we went
a Shore on great Britain in
a fish Boat, and land at
a Place called Brixham, [illegible]

in Torbay 200 miles from Land
just after sunset, and put
at one widow womans house —
Blessed be thy great Name of
god for thy goodness to us over
the waters and hast brought
us upon the Land, Lord wri[illegible][guess: te]
a Law of thankfulness in our
Hearts, and preserve me on
the Land as thou hast done
on the Seas, and deliver
me from all Evil, especially
from the evil of Sin — —

February 4

went on our Journey
Early in the Morning on Horse
Back, got to Exton about 4 pm
30 miles from Brixham
we were called up half after 10 in
the Night, and went off in a Coach of [illegible][guess: Six] Horse
at 11, from Exton pretty Large
City and reached to a City called
Salisbury about 10 in the evening
we went a 100 miles this Day

But we had very Cold Day,—
Thanks be to god for his goodness to
us hitherto —

Thursday February 6

we were called
up again just before 2 and at
2 in the Morning we went on
our Journey — and by the goodness
of God, we arrived to London about
7 in the Evening, and we called
upon Mr. DeBerdt, and were Kind
ly re[illegible][guess: ie]ivd, and lodged there, in
the Morning Mr. Smith of Boston
Came to See us, and Conducted
us to Mr. Whitefields, and were
extremely well received by him,
O how marvelous is gods goodness
to us thus far — Mr. Whitefield and
other[illegible][guess: del s] Friends here advise not to
be open as yet, — we rode with
Mr. Whitefield in his Chaise to a good Friends house
and dined there but we were Private about it,
lodged at Mr. Whitefields —

Saturday February 8:

was at
Mr. Whitefields concealed — and
on Sabbath 9th February was Still concealed

Monday February the 10th

Mr. Whitefield
took Mr. Whitaker and I in his Coach
and introduced us to my Lord Dart­
, and appeared like a worthy
Lord indeed, Mr. Whitefield Says
he is a Christian Lord and an un
common one — after we paid
our Compliments to my Lord
Mr. Whitefield carried us to my
Lady Hotham's, and She received
us with all kindness, She is
an aged woman, and a mother
in Israel, and we rode about
Both in the City and out, — the
Land about the City and in the Coun­
try is like one Continued Gar
den. — last Sabbath evening I
walked with Mr. Wright to carry
a letter to my Lord Dartmouth
and Saw Such confusion as I
never Dreamt of — there was
Some at Churches Singing p[illegible]
and Preaching, in the Streets Some
cursing swearing and Damning

one another, others was holl[illegible][guess: ow]ing,
wrestling, talking giggling, and Laugh
ing, and Coaches and footmen pass­
ing and repassing, crossing and
criss-crossing, and the poor beggars
Praying, Crying and begging up
on their knees — Tuesday dined
with Mr. Savage, and in the evening
Mr. Whitefield and his people had
Love Feast at the chapel. Mr.
and I joined with them

Wednesday February 12

rode out again

Thursday February 13

Mr. Whitefield
carried us to the Parliament House
there we Saw many curiosities,
from thence went over Westmin
ster Bridge across the River
made all of Stone —
thence went to Greenwich,
and had a glance of ˄ hospital there
But a Tedious Cold rainy Day
it was — — we were introduced by Mr.
to Mr. Fothergill a Quaker —

got home again in the Evening —

Friday February 14

Early in the
morning Mr. Whitefield Carried us to
Mr. Romains and introduced us to him
and to Mr. Madin — and to Mr.
and old apostolic
german minister, — and returned
Home again — —
Mr. Whitefield takes unwearied
Pains to Introduce us to the reli
gious Nobility and others, and
to the best of men in the City of
London — Yea he is a tender father
to us, he provides every thing
for us, he has, got a house for us, —
the Lord reward him a thousand
a thousand fold — He is indeed
a father in God, he has made him a
spiritual Father to thousands
and thousands, and god has
made him a Temporal father
to the poor, — His house is

Surrounded with the poor,
the Blind, the Lame, the Halt
and the maimed, the widow, and
the fatherless, from Day to
Day, God Continue his useful Life,
Sabbath I preached in Mr. White­
's Tabernacle
to a great
Multitude of People; I felt .....

Monday February 17

Mr. Whitefield
presented us to Dr. Gifford a
famous Baptist minister and
were received extremely well —
and Dined with him — — —


we stayed Home —

Wednesday February 19

we were Con­
ducted to See the Kings horses
Carriages and horsemen etc. —
and then went to the Parliament House
and went in the Robing Room
and Saw the Crown first, and
Saw the King, had the pleasure

of seeing him put on his Royal
Robes and Crown, — He is quite
a comely man — his Crown is
Richly adorned with Diamonds.
how grand and dazzling is it to
our Eyes — if an Earthly Crown
is So grand — How great and glo
rious must the Crown of the glorious
Redeemer be at the right hand of
the majesty on High — though
he was once crowned with
Thorns — The attendance
of King george is very sur
prising, as he went to the House
of Parliament
he and his glorious Coach
was was attended with footmen
just before and behind yea
all round, and the horsemen
just behind and before the
footmen, and the Bells and
all Sorts of musical Instru

instruments Playing, and the
cannon Firing, and Multitudes
of all Sorts of People thronging
all Round — if an Earth King
with his attendance So great, — How grand
how Dreadful and glorious must
the appearing of the Son of god
be — when he Shall descend
from Heaven, to Judge the
World, He will descend with
cherubim and seraphim
with Angels and Archangels,
and with Sound of the Trumpet
and with great Power and
glory with Thunder and lightning, — and the Family
of Heaven, and Earth, and
Hell Shall appear before
him, and the elements Shall
melt with fervent Heat —
Lor Jesus prepare me for thy
Second Coming —

we went immediately from seeing
The King, to Dine with a Noble
man My Lord Dartmouth a most
religious nobleman and his
also, the most Singular
couple amongst Nobility in
London Dinner, — This Day also went
to Westminster Abbey, and had
a fuller Vew of the monuments
Saw Bedlem also — in the evening we returned again
to Mr. Whitefields — —

Thursday February 20

this is
the Queen Charlottes Birth Day,
was Conducted to St James's where
the Royal Family and the Nobi­
lity were to be together to keep
a Joyful Day — but we were too
late, however we Saw Some of the
Nobility In their Shining Robes
and a throng of People all a
round, — the Sight of the Nobi­
lity put me in mind of Dives and

and the Rich glutton, and the
poor reminded me of Lazarus —
what great Difference there is
Between the Rich and the Poor —
and what difference there is
and will be, Between Gods poor
and the Devils Rich etc. —
o Lord God Almighty let not my
Eyes be dazzled with the glitter
ing Toys of this World, but let
mine be fixed and my Soul Long
after Jesus Christ who is the only Pearl
of great Price — This even
ing went into our house whic[illegible][guess: h]
Mr. Whitefield Provided for us
and all the Furniture also —
and a maid to wait on us —
Blessed be god, that he has
Sent he Dear Servant before,
us —

Friday February 21:

was Con­
ducted to the Tower Saw the
Kings Lions tigers Wolf and

Leopards etc. — —
Saw the Kings Guns and the
monuments of ancient Kings
on horse Back and their Soldiers
on foot with their ancient Ar­
mour of brass and Tin — —
dined with Mr. Keen, and then
went to a funeral, Mr. White­
gave an Exhortation to
the People and then prayed —
Saturday February 22 went to
See Dr. Burton a minister
of the Church of England, was
introduced by Mr. Smith of Bos
, and the Doctor was very
Kind, he would have feign
persuaded me to ˄ Holier Orders
and I modestly told him,
had no Such view when I Came
from Home, and added, I had
been Ordained Six Years in a
dissenting way. —

this afternoon Mr. Whitaker and I
went to wait upon Dr. Chandler
an[illegible] old dissenting minister, found
him very Careful in his own way
Gave us Advice not to own
Mr. Whitefield a Friend either
to Dissenters, or to the old Stand
ards of the Church of England
Promised his Countenance to the
Affair we are upon —

Sabbath February 23

in the morning
I heard Mr. Davis in the Tabernacle
in the afternoon I heard Dr. Gifford
in the Evening I preached at
Dr. Giffords — and lodged at his house
this Night —

Monday February 24

went home
Early in the morning —

Tuesday February 25

dined with Mr.

Wednesday February 26:

this af
ternoon went to See Dr. Gibbons
an Independent minister, received

us kindly and promised to assist
us according to his influence,
in our Great business, —

Thursday February 27

Preached at
Dr. Conder's Meeting house,
went from the meeting to Sup
with Mr. Randal, —
I have kept house now a
bove a week by reason of a
Cold I have — —

March 11: 1766 on Wednesday

about a quarter after 3 PM —
I was Inoculated by the Rev.
Mr. Whitaker Near Mr. George
s Tabernacle

Wednesday March 13:

I was
violently shocked with the
working of physic was very

full of Pain all Day —
was kindly visited by gentlemen
and Ladies constantly — and
had two doctors to do for me —
on the 20th of March I began
to Break out — and had it but
light — and was attended like
a Child by my Friends — I
couldn't be taken Care of better
by my own Relations, I had
a very tender and careful —
nurse a Young woman —
and by the first Day of April
I was entirely well, all my
Pock Dried up, and Scabs
dropped off — O how great is
gods goodness and Mercy
to me — O that god would
enable me to live answera
ble to the mercies and fa­
vours I enjoy — and that he
would Cure my Soul of

all Spiritual diseases by the
Blood of Jesus Christ which cleanses
from all pollution —
and that he would fit and prepare
me for himself —

April 5

went to Some distance
from our house —

Sabbath April 6:

took my
last physic after my Pox —
just at Night My Lady
Came to Mr.
s, and we were
introduced to her by Mr.
and She is most
Heavenly woman I believe in the
World, She appears like a
Mother in Israel indeed — a
woman of great Faith —

Monday April 7

I went
about the City good Deal —
I am Now Continually Invited by
our Good Friends, —

Thursday April 10

went over Thames
with Mrs. Webber to a Private
Meeting — —

Friday April 11

went with
Mr. Weekes to Meeting at the

Sabbath April 13:

at Dr. Chandler's —
and was very ill amidst
my discourse —

Wednesday April 16:

we dined with Dr. Stennett
a Baptist minister, a very
worthy Man — and hearty
Friend to the business we

are upon — V — —

Wednesday April 23

we break
fasted with Dr. Stennett

Thursday April 24:

I went
to See Dr. Condor, a very
worthy minister and a Hearty
Friend to the business we
are upon, — and went
from the Doctors to Mr. Brew
s, and was very kindly
received — he is a warm servant
of Jesus Christ —

Wednesday April 22:

Preached in the Evening at
Mr. Whitefield's chapel, to a
great Multitude, the
Lord was present with us
I hope —

Sabbath April 27:

Preached at Little St Helen's
[illegible] Devonshire Square
and I something of a freedom
in the afternoon —

Monday April 28

to See Several gentlemen Mr.
gave me 4 Book for
my own use — —
dined with Mr. Barber
a good dissenting minister —
then went with Mr. Whitaker
to Mr. Baileys, and Mr.
baptized a Child
for him, — and then went

Wednesday April 30

we went
to wait upon his grace the
Archbishop of Canterbury

and he appeared quite a
greeable and Friendly —
In the evening I preached
at Mr. Whitefield's Taberna
to a crowded Audience
and I believe the Lord was
with us of a truth —

Thursday May 1st

Dr. Stennett introduced
us to the Archbishop of
, and we found him
agreeable Gentleman, and
and Friendly disposed to
our cause, and promised to
do Something towards it — and
then went from there to Mr.
an old gentleman
from Speaker in the House
of Commons
— he appeared

very friendly to us and
was well pleased to hear the Indi­
ans in America were in
clined to received the Gospel —

Sabbath may 4:

at Mr. Barber's meeting
and had Some Freedom
in Speaking — and in
the afternoon I preached
at Mr. Brittons Meeting
a worthy Baptist — to a
crowded audience and the
Lord was with us in a
measure — — —

Monday May 5

went out with Dr. Stennett
but we were disappointed
in our visits —
and we went to Sir Charles
to return thanks

to him for generous Donation
to our business — found him
full of god, his talk was no­
thing but about Jesus Christ —

Wednesday May 7

we dined
with a Number of ministers
and other Gentlemen at Bar­
bers Hall
, and found many
gentlemen well disposed to­
wards our business — —

Thursday May 8:

we went
to Clapham, found Some Friends
and opposition — — —

Sabbath may 11:

at Mr. Brewers to a crowded
Audience, and the Lord gave
me freedom to Speak, and
the People attended with great
affection — praise be to god —

In the evening I preached at
Mr. Shillon's to a thronged
Congregation, and there
was a Solemn appearance
of the People. the was with
us, Glory be to his great
Name forever and ever —

Monday May 12

we went
to wait upon Mr. Onslow
and he appeared very
Friendly to our business
highly aproved of it —


we dined
with Mr. Savage — —


I dined with
Mr. Morison


we dined with

Thornton at Clapham
a Sincere Christian gentleman
and a Hearty Friend to
our affair, and will
use his Influence — we
have Seen much of the
goodness of god this week
thanks be to his holy name

Friday may 16:

in the evening
preached at Mr. Clarkes and
the gave me Some strength
to Preach — and the People
were very attentive —

Saturday may 17

we went
to wait on Mr. Jackson the
Second time Met Some what
cold reception, —

Sabbath may 18:

at Dr. Gifford's AM: with

Some freedom, in the after
preached at Dr. Stennett's with
Strength, blessed be god for his
Assistance —

Wednesday may 21:

I went to
See Mr. Romain was kindly
received by him, he is freer
man to talk about religion
at Heart than Mr. Whitefield
we came into the Town together
in a Coach — and then Mr.
Conducted me to a
Baptist Meeting where there
was a Number of Baptists
ministers about 20 of them
after meeting I Dined with
them, and they were very
civil to me — and then I
returned home —

Thursday may 22:

went to
Mr. Skinner's then Home, and
from thence to a Meeting with
Mr. Told and his Family
Mr. Told preached, — returning
home we heard a Man
and woman killed By the
Coach's oversetting, and a
Cart running over them —
this Evening I was taken
with a violent Purging. —

Friday May 23

was very
Sick with a Sort of Bloody
and Kept me down a week
before I was able to go out —

Sabbath June 1

I was able
to go out to Preach in preached
at Mr. Bulkley's a Baptist minister
and had but few hearers

In the afternoon Preached
for Mr. Winter to a great
Congregation found my
self but weak in Body —
this week I was busy. getting
ready to Send Some things to
my Children, —

Saturday June 7

I went
to Northampton, got there
just before Night, and was
received with all kindness —

Sabbath June 8.

at Mr. Riland's Meeting house
to a thronged Congregation, and
the Lord gave me Some strength
and the People attended with
great Solemnity and Affection
and was told afterwards one
young Man was Converted
and hopefully Converted —

in the afternoon preached
in Riland's Yard to about
3000 reckoned, — . —

Monday June 9:

Mr. Newton
of olney about 15 miles off
Came to fetch me to his Place
after breakfast we set off [illegible]
rode in a post chaise
there a little after 12: this
Mr. Newton is a minister of
the Church of England, he
was a Sailor, and god mar
vellously turned him and
he is a flaming Preacher
of the Gospel, — at Evening
I preached at one of the meet
ings in the Place, to a crowd
of People, — lodged at Mr.
's, — a Number of
good people live in this place but
very poor in this world —

Tuesday June 10

Mr. Newton
and I took a walk towards
Northampton about miles —
and there breakfasted, —
and there we parted he
went Back afoot, and I
went on horse to Northampton
got there about 12: dined
with Mr. Hextal one[illegible] of the
dissenting ministers of the
place, — at 6 in the evening
I preached the Meeting house
where Great Dr. Doddrege
was minister, and there was
a great concourse of people
and attended with great
solemnity — Lodged at Mr.
's — there is a number
of warm Christians in this
Town —

Wednesday June 11

got up
a little after 3 and was in
a Coach before 4: and returned
to London — Got there a little
after 6: — found my friends
well. Thanks be to god for
his goodness —

Sabbath June 15:

in the Morning at Mr. Bur­
's Meeting had Some free­
dom — in the afternoon I
preached at Mr. Pitts, with
sense of Divine things in
the Evening preached at Shake
speares walk
— and supped —
with Mr. ware's this Evening —

Monday June 16

went to Mr. Thorntons
at Clapham and was entertained
with all kindness. he is a gentleman
of immense fortune, and he is
the right Sorts of Christians
and a very Charitable man —

Lodged with him this Night —

Tuesday Morning

Mr. Thornton
took me in his Chariot and
carried me to my Lodgings —

Wednesday June 18:

I went
in the Morning to See Mr.
a Baptist minister
of Saffron Walden Breakfasted
with him —

Thurdsday June 19

Preached in Mr. John Wesley's
Foundry to a crowded Au­
dience at 7 in the
Evening — — —

Saturday June 21:

and I went to
Saffron Walden got there

before Night lodged at Mrs.
's —

Sabbath June 22:

to Meeting Mr. Whitaker P[illegible][guess: d]
and in the afternoon I
preached to a crowded Con
gregation, and I was very
Poorly, but I believe the
Lord was with us of a truth
and in the evening preached
again to great assembly
and I had Some Strength,
and the People made a
Collection — —

Monday June 23

we re
turned to London, got there
Some time before night —
The Lord be praised for all
his goodness to us — —

this Evening I heard, the Stage
Players, had been mimicking
of me in their Plays, lately —
I never thought I should ever
Come that Honor, — o' god would
give me greater Courage —

Thursday June 26

dined with
Savage, in the Evening was
visited by Mr. Furly a minister
from Yorkshire, one who truly
Loves the Lord Jesus Christ I believe —

Friday June 27.

Early in the Morning at Mr.
's Meeting,

Sabbath June 29:

at Mr. Brewers in the latter
Part of the Day to a crowded
Congregation, and they

made a Collection for us to
the amount of
the Lord reward them a many
fold in this life and in the
world to Come Life everlas
ting —

Monday June 30

Mr. Smith
of Boston in America, and I
went Down the River Thames
to Sheerness by the seaside
near Sixty miles from London
we went by water So far as Graves
, a fine prospect we had
each Side of the River, flat
Land, and very Fruitful,
indeed it is like one continued
garden — But the melancholy
Sight was to See So many

Malefactors Hung up in Irons
by the River — we took Coach
at Gravesend to Chatham
and then went by water a
gain, and we sailed through
a great Number of Man of
War all the way to Sheer
. Got there between and
eleven, —

Tuesday, July 1.

we went
all about Sheerness, viewing
every thing we could See, to­
wards night we went to Bath­
ing in Salt water, —

Wednesday July 2:

we re
turned went by water So far
as Chatham, and it rained
and thundered very hard —
while we were on the water

got to Chatham about 9
and there took post chaise
and went on to London, got
there about 6, found my friends
well, and received Some Letters
from America and by them
my family was well the 29
of April last
— Blessed be god
for his tender Mercies to me
and to mine, O that the Lord
would teach us to be thankful
at all times —

Sabbath July 6:

Preached at
Mr. Webb's Meeting to a Small
Congregation — in the afternoon
I heard Mr. Preach, —

Monday June 7

I went to Clap­
to See Esq. Thornton, and
was very kindly received, after
Dinner Mr. Thornton and I went

in chaise to [gap: omitted] and
[illegible]ode all the afternoon and
had very agreeable ride —
and we had agreeable con
versation about religion
of Jesus Christ — — Just at Night
we went to See his Sister Wilberforce at
Wimbledon, and they were
very urgent to have me
Stay there that Night, and
lodged there —

Tuesday July 8:

Wilberforce carried me in her
Coach to London — She is a
Sound Christian — in the after
noon I dined with Miss gideon
a Jewess by birth but a true
Christian, had a Sweet con
versation with her — from
there went to See Sir Jame

Jay of new York in America
and then went to See Mr. Went
of Portsmouth in America
and then went home —

wednesday July 9

went to
visiting again but found none
that I wanted to See —

Thursday July 10

with Mr. Whitaker to Several
Places, and then went to
Stepney and dined with a
Number of ministers and
were very kindly received
by them — from thence I went
home —

Friday July 11

went to wait upon
Mr. Penn but he was not at
Home and it thundered and
rained very hard in the morning
and returned home again —

Sabbath July the 13

went in the
morning to Dodford and at Mr.
's Meeting, a good Purita
nical Independent, and we had
a very crowded Audience, and
they made a Collection for us.
went Directly to London and
preached at Mr. Stafford's meeting
But it was not very crowded —
after Meeting went with one
Mr. Cocks to Drink Tea and
while we were at Tea I se
riously as[illegible][guess: k]d Mr. Cocks, who was to
Preach at Mr. Whitefield's T.
he with all gravity Said Mr.
, Mr. Occom? Says I, Yes
Says he, I know nothing of it
Say I again, it is So Conclud
ed Says he — So I immediately
went and preached to a mul­
titude of People, and the Lord
gave me Some Strength

Blessed be his great Name

Tuesday July 15

went to dined
Dr. Gifford, after Dinner went
with Sir James Jay to wait on
one Mr. Person, and Saw many
of his curiosities — and then
went home —

Wednesday July 16:

in the
Evening preached at Dr. Giffords
Meeting — to a Small number
of People —

Thursday July 17:

Mr. W.
and I went to Hitchin in a
Stage Coach, about forty
Miles from London, got there
just about 12. and were re
ceived with all kindness by
our Friends — I lodged at Mr.

Thomas's and Mr. Whitaker
lodged at Mr. Wellshare's —

Friday July 18:

we visited
all Day at Hitchin

Saturday July 19:

we went
to Southwell I preached to a Small
number of People — the People
made a Collection for us
they a Collected about £15
returned again in the Even
ing to Hitchin

Sabbath July 20

I preached
in the Morning at Mr. Hick
's Meeting a very worthy
minister of Jesus Christ, — and in the
afternoon preached at
Mr. James's a Baptist minister
and a very worthy Man —
the Meeting very Much crowded

and as Soon as the meeting
was done — a post chaise
was ready for me at the Door
and I went immediately to
Luton about 9 Miles from
Hitchin, and in Mr. Hall's
Meeting, to a great Multitude
and as Soon as the was done
I went Back to Hitchin
got there about 10. —
the Lord gave me Some
sense of Divine Things
this Day, and gave me
Some Strength — Glory be to
his great Name for his
condescension —

Monday July 21

Back to London — got there
about 5 PM

Tuesday July 22,

about to leave of my
good Friends and Wed
nesday and Thursday to
Leave of my good Friends
hitherto the Lord helped
us and glory be to his
great and holy Name —

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Mr. Matth Meller
Linen Draper Ro[illegible][guess: ss]
Bristol, Correspondent
Mrs. Sarah Pearse
Mrs. Mary Pollard

blank page
Letters Sent to America March 1766
 to Mrs. Occom — — — — 4
 to Mr. Peck [illegible] of Boston — — 1
 to Mrs. Wheatley Boston 1
 to a Negro Girl Boston 1
 to Capt. Shaw New London — 1
 to Jo Uppauquiyantup — 1
 to Mr. Buell — — — — 1
 to Mrs. Tallmadge and Daughters. 2
 to Ben Hedges — 1
 to Loper — — — 1
 to Mulford — — 1
to Mrs. Occom April — 15 — 3[illegible][guess: ]
to Mrs. Occom June 2
to Mr. Wells New York — — 1
to Mr. Wood Shady Grove — 1
to Mr. Brush Goshen — 1

Mrs. Routledges St Mart[illegible]
Legrand in Deans C[illegible][guess: ourt]

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Connecticut Board of Correspondents of the Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge
The Connecticut Board of Correspondents of the SSPCK was founded in 1764 at Wheelock's request. He wanted a public board's support so that his school would seem more credible since it was a private organization with no charter. The Boston Board of the SSPCK would not do since they generally opposed Wheelock, so his solution was to petition the SSPCK for his own board. The SSPCK acquiesed, and the board met for the first time on July 4, 1764. While the board was nominally separate from Wheelock's school, in practice, he exercised considerable control over it. The members of the board were Wheelock's handpicked friends and supporters: Jonathan Huntington, Elisha Sheldon, Samuel Huntington, Solomon Williams, Joseph Fish, William Gaylord, Samuel Moseley, Benjamin Pomeroy, Richard Salter, Nathaniel Whitaker, David Jewett, and Wheelock himself. Wheelock used this board to send Occom and Whitaker to England, hold exams for Moor's Indian Charity School, and generally support his designs. When Wheelock moved to New Hampshire, he tried to establish a New Hampshire Board as well, but by that point the SSPCK was much more cautious when it came to Wheelock's plans and refused. The Connecticut Board dissolved in 1771 as Wheelock was its raison d'etre.
Church of England
The Church of England is the governing body of the Anglican Church in Britain and the Episcopalian Church in America. In the eighteenth century, the Church of England was at odds with the “dissenting” sects that had broken off from it during the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries, including the Congregationalists and Presbyterians. The divide continued in the colonies. The southern colonies (Virginia, Carolina, etc) and New York were predominantly Anglican, while the mid-Atlantic and New England colonies were home to an assortment of dissenting sects. Wheelock and Occom both had conflicts with Episcopalians. Wheelock feuded with the Anglican Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (SPG), a functional arm of the Church of England, over access to the Six Nations (the other important Anglican missionary organization, the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, or SPCK, was more concerned with book distribution). Meanwhile, Episcopalian ministers in America ordained their own Indian minister and sent him to England prior to Occom’s 1765 fundraising tour to distract attention away from Occom. However, this Indian spoke no English and was not a success. Once in England, Occom met with a cool reception from Anglican clergy, and Occom doubted their sympathy for the Indian cause. He wrote, "they never gave us one single brass farthing. It seems to me that they are very indifferent whether the poor Indians go to Heaven or Hell. I can’t help my thoughts; and I am apt to think they don’t want the Indians to go to Heaven with them" (quoted J. Brooks 86-87). In the broader history of Moor’s Indian Charity School, notable Anglicans include George Whitefield, the famous New Light preacher, and Sir William Johnson, the Superintendent for British Indian Affairs in the North East. Anglican influence, especially via Sir William Johnson, was a large part of the reason why the Mohawks sided with the British during the Revolution.
House of Commons
The House of Commons, also called the Commons, is the popularly elected legislative body of the bicameral British Parliament. The House of Lords is the other body of the British government, though the term "Parliament" is often used to refer solely to the House of Commons. Its origins date from the 1250s, when property owners began sending representatives to Parliament to present grievances and petitons to the king. These representatives, mostly knights and burgesses (or commoners) started to meet in a chamber separate from the one used by nobles and high clergy (the lords). The House of Commons was initially less powerful than that of the Lords, but its powers have gradually increased over time. It is the legislative authority in Great Britain with the power to originate laws, impose taxes, and vote subsidies; its acts are not subject to judicial review.

The first English immigrant to settle on a peninsula in a harbor on the northeastern coast of North America the local Algonquin Indians called "Shawmet" was William Blackstone in 1629. A year later, John Winthrop arrived with a group of English Puritans and other settlers and named the area Boston after his hometown in Lincolnshire, England. The colony quickly developed representative political institutions that would help shape a democratic nation. Over the next few centuries, Boston emerged as an intellectual and educational center, and, because of its excellent harbor, became a leading commercial hub and a primary port for North America. It is the capital and largest city of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the largest city in New England. Boston was the home for the Boards of Commissioners of several overseas religious societies who sent missionaries throughout the colonies in the 18th century, and was the site of many important events of the American Revolution.


A city in the southwest of England. In the mid-18th century, Bristol became England's second biggest city due to its thriving importation of sugar cane, tobacco, rum, and cocoa, all products of the slave trade. Its affluence made it an important and lucrative stop for Occom and Whitaker on the fundraising trip to the west of England.


A district in southwest London, England, in the Borough of Lambeth, known for its large green space, Clapham Common. Originally a Saxon village, it began to grow in the late 17th century as refugees poured in from the Great Plague of London in 1665 and the Great Fire of 1666. By the late 18th century, it became a fashionable location for the rich, who wanted to live in a rural setting close to the amenities of the city.


Exton, Somerset is a village located in the southwest region of England. Somerset borders Bristol, Gloucester, Wiltshire, Dorset, and Devon counties. In a letter to Whitaker, Thomas Ludlow refers to the town of Exon, which is most likely Exton, Somerset, given its proximity to Bristol (where the letter was written). Furthermore, there is speculation that the Somerset dialect favored the pronunciation Exon over Exton. Exton was one intended stop on Occom and Whitaker's fundraising tour of England.

Great Britain
Bethlehem Royal Hospital

Mohegan is a village in southeastern Connecticut at the site of the present-day town of Montville, and is the location of the Mohegan Indian Reservation. The village gets its name from the Mohegan Tribe, or wolf people, who split from the Pequots in the early 17th century under the leadership of the sachem Uncas. In the 1720s, the Mohegans requested the colony of Connecticut provide them with an English educator. An English minister and schoolteacher named John Mason (no relation to Captain John Mason) moved to Mohegan in order to provide English-styled education to the Mohegans, convinced his sponsors, the New England Company, to build a schoolhouse at Mohegan, which eventually served as a boarding school for other Native American children from the surrounding area. During the 17th century, the Mohegan Tribe became embroiled in a complicated controversy over control of Mohegan land — known as the Mason Land Case or, more specifically, Mohegan Indians v. Connecticut — that included the village of Mohegan. The Tribe claimed that it never authorized a transfer of their lands, held in trust by the Mason family, to the colonial government. In 1662, the colony of Connecticut was incorporated by a royal charter, which included the disputed tribal land. The land controversy was revived in 1704 when descendants of John Mason, the original trustee, petitioned the Crown on behalf of the Mohegans, but the suit was finally decided against the Tribe in 1773. Born in Mohegan, Occom became involved in the Mason Land Case and vehemently argued for the rights of the Mohegan Indians to maintain their land, opposing Eleazar Wheelock and other ministers in the area. Although Occom left Mohegan for a 12-year mission with the Montauk Indians of Long Island, he returned at the end of 1763 with his large family to build a house in Mohegan, establishing it as his base of operations. Even after the creation of the Brothertown settlement in Oneida country, for which he served as minister, Occom continued to commute back and forth from Mohegan; he didn't sell his house in Mohegan and move his family to Brothertown until 1789. Many members of his family remained in Mohegan, including his sister Lucy Tantaquidgeon, who lived there until her death at 99 in 1830.


The capital and largest city of the United Kingdom, London is located in the southeastern region of England along the Thames River. The outpost that would become London originated as a military storage post for the Romans when they invaded Britain in the year 43. It soon developed as a trading center and financial hub for Roman Britain. During a revolt against the Romans in 61, London was burned to the ground; the rebuilt town appeared in Tacitus’s Annals as Londinium. With the decline of the Roman Empire in the 4th century, Londinium became a Saxon trading town. Following the Norman Conquest, London retained its central political and commercial importance. In the 14th century, under Edward II, Westminster became an administrative center and London became the capital of England. In the early 18th century, London was an important hub for evangelical Christianity and home to many influential people, like the charismatic Anglican minister, George Whitefield, who were sympathetic to Wheelock’s missionary endeavors. Occom arrived in London in February 1766 on his fundraising tour for Wheelock’s school and preached his first sermon at Whitefield’s Tabernacle. London would be Occom’s home base for the next two years, as he and Whitaker travelled throughout England and Scotland. Occom made many friends in London who would continue to support him after his break with Wheelock and the School. By the late 18th century, London had replaced Amsterdam as the center of world commerce, a role it would maintain until 1914.

New London

New London is a city located in southeastern Connecticut along an estuary of the Atlantic Ocean called Long Island Sound. The area that would become New London was inhabited by the Pequots who called it Nameaug when the Europeans arrived in North America. Pequot villages bordered Long Island Sound and the Tribe had authority over the neighboring Tribes of the Mohegans and Niantics (all Algonquian-speaking tribes). The Dutch first explored this land in 1614 and established trade with the Native peoples, but the English soon gained possession of the land east of the Hudson in the 1630s. English animosity toward their Indian neighbors led to the Pequot War (1634-38), part of which took place in the present city of New London. The Pequots lost the war and their population deteriorated due to the violence and disease. The General Court of Massachusetts granted John Winthrop possession of Pequot territory in 1644 after which it was to be opened for settlement. By 1646, which is considered the official year of its founding, New London had permanent colonial inhabitants and municipal laws, and jurisdiction was granted to the colony of Connecticut in 1647. In 1658, the inhabitants renamed the town New London after London, England. New London was the colony of Connecticut’s first trading port and was a hub of trade with the West Indies and other colonies. Though initially part of the town of New London when it was first settled by the colonists, Groton, Montville, and Waterford were each separated from New London in 1705, 1786, and 1801 respectively. Present-day Salem was also part of New London when it was settled, but in 1819, it became a separate incorporated town composed of parts of Lyme, Colchester, and Montville. Occom kept a school in New London in the winter in 1748. New London was the home of Captain Nathaniel Shaw, one of the wealthiest merchants in the area, who gave money to Occom in the 1750s for the missionary cause and also sold materials to Occom for the building of his home. However, their positive relationship ended when Shaw refused to provide supplies for Mary Occom while Occom was in England. New London served as the port from which Occom and other missionaries traveled to reach Long Island. During the American Revolution, New London’s location and its status as a seaport made it both vulnerable to invasion and integral to colonial naval operations as well as the exchange of prisoners.New London was incorporated as a city in 1784.

New York City

Portsmouth is a city located in southeastern New Hampshire. Europeans began settling along the Piscataqua River in 1623. By 1640, the first four plantations, or towns, in what is now the state of New Hampshire — Dover, Portsmouth, Exeter, and Hampton — were settled by the British. In the wake of this influx, native settlements, specifically that of the Abanakis who historically fished and hunted in Portsmouth, were largely reduced by disease and war. Originally called Strawbery Banke, the settlement was renamed in 1653 in honor of Captain John Mason (not to be confused with the John Mason of the Mason Land Case) who hailed from Portsmouth, England. Located along the Atlantic Ocean and the Piscataqua River, Portsmouth quickly became a regional center for trade and served as New Hampshire’s colonial capital from 1679 until the middle of the American Revolution. Following Queen Anne’s War, American colonists and the Wabanaki Confederacy of Native Americans signed an agreement in Portsmouth called The Portsmouth Indian Treaty of 1713 establishing peace between colonists and surrounding Native Americans. In 1763, Wheelock went to Portsmouth to solicit money for the funding of his school, and in 1765, Occom and Whitaker accompanied him to Portsmouth to fundraise for their trip to England.


Stepney is a district between the Thames River and Mile End Road in the East End of London that developed out of Stibenhede, a medieval village surrounding St. Dunstan’s Church. Because of its docks and Mile End Road, a busy thoroughfare running east from London, Stepney expanded in the 16th century, and in the 17th century, it became a locus for Protestant dissenters, independents, and separatists who were forced to meet outside London. In 1644, a congregation of dissenters began to meet in the area and created the Stepney Meeting in 1674, also known as the Broad Street Church, which became the largest dissenting congregation in London. From 1746 until 1796, Reverend Samuel Brewer, a close associate of George Whitefield and a popular figure in London religious circles, preached at Stepney Meeting. In 1765, Brewer was one of the eminent clergymen who welcomed Occom and Whitaker to London during their fundraising tour, using Stepney Meeting as a base to connect Occom to other area churches. While in London, Occom preached at Stepney Meeting several times to crowded audiences and raised a significant amount of money for Wheelock’s school. Today, Stepney is a working-class, immigrant neighborhood home to many post-war tower blocks and housing estates.

Tabernacle at Moorfields

The Tabernacle at Moorfields was George Whitefield’s first London church, built in 1741, two years after his return from North America. When touring abroad, Whitefield preached to crowds too large for any existing church, so he held outdoor revivals. This practice, combined with his zealous preaching style, spurred the First Great Awakening. Upon returning to London, the Anglican-ordained Whitefield found most church doors closed to him because his methods and theology had become controversial with the Church of England. As a result, Whitefield began delivering outdoor sermons in London, preaching in Moorfields, one of the city’s last open spaces. At the same time, John Wesley, who converted Whitefield to Methodism during their time at Oxford, opened the Moorfields Foundry, where he also preached to large crowds. After preaching in America, however, Whitefield moved closer to Calvinism, which deviated from Wesleyan doctrine. Although he occasionally preached at the Foundry and avoided a public break with John Wesley and his brother Charles, Whitefield found it necessary to build his own church in 1741. The first building was a temporary wooden structure, named for the tabernacle the Israelites built and carried through the wilderness. In 1753, this makeshift structure was replaced by a brick one that could hold up to 4,000 people, and was the spectacular setting for Occom’s first sermon in England, in February of 1766, as well as the site of his smallpox inoculation that March. Occom preached several more times to huge crowds accommodated by the Tabernacle. Robert Keen and Daniel West, who managed the Tabernacle for many years, took its helm upon Whitefield’s death in 1770. The Tabernacle was replaced by a smaller stone structure in 1868, which no longer stands. Today, London’s Tabernacle Street runs by the former site of Whitefield’s Moorfield church.


Goshen is a town located in the Northwest Hills in Litchfield County, Connecticut, first settled by the British colonists in 1738 and incorporated in 1739. In the 18th century, Goshen was a farming town and soon became successful producing musket rifles for the colonists during the American Revolution. In 1765, Occom wrote a sermon in Goshen that is an exegesis on Ezekiel 33:11, specifically dealing with the choices of sinners and the death of the wicked.

Lands End
Tottenham Court Road Chapel

Tottenham Court Road Chapel

Tower of London
Parliament House
Westminster Abbey
the Foundry
Thames River
St. James's
Little St. Helens
Devonshire Square
Barber's Hall
Shakespeares Walk
Saffron Walden
Shady Grove
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.

Wheatley, Phillis

Phillis Wheatley is the first African-American woman to publish her writing. Born in West Africa around 1753, she was brought to America as a slave when she was eight. She was purchased by John Wheatley, a Boston merchant, as a servant for his wife, Susanna; they named her Phillis after the ship that transported her. The Wheatley children tutored Phillis, who was an avid student and quickly learned to read Greek and Latin classics as well as the Bible. Recognizing her abilities, the Wheatley family curtailed Wheatley's household duties and encouraged her reading. The Wheatleys supported the Revolutionary cause, as well as the same evangelical and missionary movements as Wheelock. Wheatley began writing elegies, occasional poems, and poems with religious and political themes in the Augustan style, several addressed to famous men of the time, which brought her acclaim. In 1770, she wrote a tribute to the English evangelical preacher George Whitefield, and in 1775 she wrote "To his Excellency George Washington," then general of the Continental Army, which solicited an invitation to visit him in Cambridge. Occom corresponded with Susanna Wheatley, who supported his activities, and from those letters we know that Wheatley and Occom also corresponded, as early as 1765. The only surviving letter of that correspondence, which was reprinted in several New England newspapers, is by Wheatley and dated February 11, 1774, in which she deplores the practice of slavery and points out the hypocrisy of Americans’ demands for freedom. Despite her renown, Bostonians doubted that a young slave girl could write poetry, and in 1772, the Wheatleys invited a group of illustrious men to "examine" Phillis, including Reverend Charles Chauncy, John Hancock, Thomas Hutchinson, the Royal governor of Massachusetts, and his lieutenant governor, Andrew Oliver, who was also treasurer of the Boston Board of the New England Company, which funded some of Wheelock's endeavors. Not finding a publisher, she traveled to England where she was supported by the Countess of Huntingdon and the Earl of Dartmouth, a member of the English Trust that handled the funds raised for Wheelock's School by Occom. "Poems on Various Subjects Religious and Moral" appeared in 1773. Freed in 1778, Wheatley married a free black man named John Peters. They struggled with poverty, and lost two children in infancy. Shortly after Peters was imprisoned for debt in 1784, Wheatley and her third infant child died; there is evidence that she had written another volume of poetry, but it has never been found.

Whitaker, Nathaniel

Nathaniel Whitaker was an outspoken Presbyterian minister with a long and wide-ranging career. Between his ordination in 1755 and his death in 1795, Whitaker ministered to five different congregations. His longest tenure was at Chelsea, CT (near Norwich), from 1761-1769, during which he joined Occom on his two-and-a-half-year fundraising tour of Britain. While in Chelsea, Whitaker was very involved in Wheelock's project. The two engaged in frequent correspondence, and Whitaker served on Eleazar Wheelock's Board of Correspondents in Connecticut, as well as on the Board of Trustees of Moor's Indian Charity School. At one time, he was Wheelock's presumed successor, but Dartmouth's Trustees demanded that Wheelock appoint another. Wheelock, in part due to his strongly-held belief that Native Americans were childlike and rash, was convinced that Occom needed an Anglo-American supervisor on his fundraising tour. After several candidates turned down the job, Wheelock selected Whitaker. He proved to be a poor choice; he was, by many accounts, a difficult man to get along with, and many of Wheelock’s British allies, including George Whitefield and the English Trust (the organization that took control of the money Occom raised in England) preferred to deal with Occom, although Whitaker insisted on handling the tour’s logistics. Furthermore, in Britain, Occom was the obvious star of the tour, and it was unclear to many why Whitaker asserted himself so prominently. Whitaker’s poor decisions seriously alienated the English Trust and increased their suspicion of Wheelock’s later dealings and treatment of Occom. He gave the English Trust the impression that they would have control over money raised in Scotland (which was in fact lodged with the parent organization of the SSPCK), and he was the executor of the “Eells Affair,” a plan initiated by the CT Board of the SSPCK to bring the money that Occom and Whitaker raised back to the colonies by investing it in trade goods and selling them at a profit (Eells was one of the merchants who was to help with the resale of goods). The English Trust learned about the plan by reading letters that Whitaker had given them permission to open in his absence, and were immediately shocked. The wording of certain letters made it appear that only a percentage of the profit from the resale of the goods would go towards Moor’s Indian Charity School, but beyond that detail, the English Trust was scandalized at the thought of money raised for charity being invested in trade. The English Trust blamed Whitaker entirely for these affairs, and issued specific instructions for Occom to notarize all documents requiring Whitaker’s signature. In short, they wanted Occom to supervise Whitaker, when Wheelock had envisioned the opposite relationship (both Occom and Whitaker seem to have ignored their instructions, preferring to have as little contact with one another as possible). In 1769, a year after his return to Connecticut in 1768, Whitaker found himself dismissed by his Chelsea congregation (likely because he had spent two and a half years away from them). He went on to serve several more congregations before his death in 1795. Whitaker was an outspoken Whig, and during the Revolution he published several pamphlets on his political opinions.

Peck, Moses

Watchmaker Moses Peck took collections for Occom, and Wheelock had an account with him that involved shipping items to Lebanon and debits/credits for funding Occom. It is possible that Peck was Occom’s credit source in Boston. He was enthusiastic about and involved in the Indian education mission, and offered Wheelock advice about how to deal with Anglicans. Wheelock had Peck print his brief defense of Occom to counter the London Society’s rumors. Peck paid to send his son Elijah to school with Wheelock, although Elijah eventually failed his graduation examinations.

Marshall, John
Williams, John
Bromfield, Thomas
Whitefield, George

George Whitefield, the English itinerant preacher who helped spark the Great Awakening, was an essential supporter of Eleazar Wheelock’s project. Whitefield studied at Pembroke College, Oxford, where he met the pioneers of Methodism, John and Charles Wesley. He was ordained in 1736, and he made the first of his seven trips to America two years later. While abroad in 1740, Whitefield founded an orphanage in Georgia, and went on a preaching tour during which he met Wheelock and spread ideals that prompted the Great Awakening. Although Whitefield was ordained in the Church of England, his enthusiastic preaching style and charismatic personality made him a controversial figure, and traditional clergyman on both sides of the Atlantic censured him. Nonetheless, he continued to be an important contact and friend of Wheelock’s, and his dedication to Wheelock’s vision was evident. He contributed money to the cause, secured various other funders, and donated an eighty-pound prayer bell to the school. More importantly, Whitefield not only suggested to Wheelock the idea of a fundraising tour in Great Britain, he hosted Occom and Whitaker shortly after they arrived in England, provided a house for them to reside in for the remainder of their tour, and introduced the pair to influential figures such as William Legge, the Earl of Dartmouth. Whitefield tabernacle’s was the setting of Occom’s first sermon in England on February 16, 1766, and many believe that Whitefield wrote the introduction to a pamphlet printed in London during the campaign (although he was not credited). Whitefield continued to be involved in Wheelock’s work until he died in Newburyport, MA in September of 1770.

Legge, William

William Legge, the second Earl of Dartmouth, was the reluctant namesake of Dartmouth College. Like many of his countrymen, Legge became involved in Eleazar Wheelock’s plans through George Whitefield, the famous evangelical who introduced Samson Occom and Nathaniel Whitaker to Legge shortly after the pair’s February 1766 arrival in London. Legge proved critical in promoting Occom’s tour among the nobility, and took on a logistical role by helping to collect and oversee donations. Although Legge and Whitefield both felt it would be best if Wheelock were in total control of the funds raised in England, Occom eventually collected so much money that a formal trust was necessary to preserve propriety. This trust was formed in late 1766, with Legge as its president, to guarantee that Wheelock used the money appropriately. It soon proved that the Trust and Wheelock had different ideas as to what was, in fact, appropriate, but they were largely able to cooperate until 1769, when Wheelock obtained a charter for his school without informing the trust. (The trust, feeling that a charter would obviate its control over the British funds, had vehemently opposed it.) Adding insult to injury, Wheelock named the resulting institution Dartmouth—again without consulting Legge, and perhaps more to reassure the multitudes who had donated money than to honor the Earl. Legge never wrote to Wheelock again. Outside of his involvement with Wheelock, Legge had a brief political career. Although he was generally more concerned with religious and philanthropic matters, his station and connections (he was the step-brother of Frederick North, who was prime minister from 1770 to 1782) led him to take his first political post in 1765 as a member of the Board of Trade. During his tenure (1765-1767), and again while he was Secretary of State for the Colonies (1772-1775), Legge’s search for cooperative solutions proved unsuccessful during the build-up to the Revolution. His later positions were primarily ceremonial.

Savage, Samuel

Samuel Savage was a London merchant and a member of the English Trust, the body formed to oversee money raised by Samson Occom and Nathaniel Whitaker in England between 1766 and 1768. His shop was on Gun Street, in Spitalfields, and he was likely a weaver. Few other personal details are known. Like most of Eleazar Wheelock’s English contacts, Savage was a follower of the evangelical George Whitefield, transatlantic celebrity of the First Great Awakening, and it was through Whitefield that Savage became involved in Wheelock’s initial attempts to gain a charter in the 1760s. Once Occom and Whitaker arrived in London in February 1766, Savage was part of the informal committee that handled their correspondence and suggested targets for fundraising. He was also made a member of the Trust when it was formally established in 1766. Savage, like John Thornton, continued to provide Wheelock with financial support after the fund was exhausted in 1775. Although most of the Englishmen who worked with Whitaker and Occom found Whitaker insufferable and praised Occom, Savage displayed a marked preference for Whitaker. Like Wheelock, he was worried that Occom would become prouder than he thought was appropriate for an Indian, and he expressed concerns that Whitaker had not been paid enough to compensate for his long absence from his family (no similar concerns about Occom’s family were voiced). Since Savage’s views on Occom were very close to the New England norm and represent a deviation from most Englishmen’s views, one is tempted to conclude that he had spent time in America or had been born there, but that is pure conjecture.

Fothergill, John
Gifford, Andrew

Andrew Gifford was the leading Baptist minister in England in the 18th century. He was born in Bristol, the son of Emmanuel Gifford (1673–1723), a Baptist minister, and his wife, Eleanor Lancaster (1662–1738); and grandson of Andrew Gifford, also a Bristol Baptist minister. He served as a Baptist minister in Nottingham (1725–1726) and Bristol (1727-1729). In January 1730, Gifford became Baptist minister at Little Wild Street, London, but was ostracized because of charges of sodomy that were never proven, and in 1736, he formed a new congregation in Eagle Street, where he remained as pastor for the rest of his life. Also a noted coin collector, he was a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and was appointed assistant librarian in the British Museum in 1757. With the fortune of his second wife, Gifford encouraged an educated Baptist ministry through his support of Bristol Baptist College. His unusual combination of Calvinist theology with evangelical passion made him a partisan of George Whitefield, whose "Eighteen Sermons" (1771) Gifford edited; it was a volume that sold widely in England and America. He also supported Wheelock's missionary efforts; in his "Narrative" for June 1764, Wheelock records that Gifford sent the school “a neat Pair of Globes, and a valuable Collection of Books," and appeals to him for help in advancing the School's interests in London. Gifford was one of several prominent clergymen who befriended Occom and Whitaker on their fundraising tour in England. Occom records hearing Gifford preach, preaching at his church, and dining and lodging at his house. A measure of Occom's affection for Gifford is that he and Mary Occom named their youngest son Andrew Gifford (b 1774 in Mohegan).

Frederick, George William

George William Frederick (King George III) became heir to the throne of England in 1751 upon the death of his father Frederick, Prince of Wales. He became King George III of England in the fall of 1760 at age 22, following the death of his grandfather King George II. George III passed many important edicts during his reign including that of the Royal Marriage Act of 1772; the Treaty of Paris in 1762, which ended the Seven Years War; the Stamp Act of 1765; and the Townshend Duties of 1767. However, he is most well-known for being the reigning monarch during the Revolutionary War. After the surrender of British forces to the Americans in 1782, George III considered abdicating the throne, but chose not to do so because he felt it would be too detrimental to Britain. The last 30 years of George's life were plagued with illness. In 1788 he had the first of many attacks of insanity, now believed to have been caused by an inherited disease known as porphyria. With George III unfit to rule, it was decided that his son George would become regent, an arrangement which was made permanent in 1810. King George III died on January 29, 1820 at the age of 81 after a reign of nearly 60 years (the third longest in British history). He was succeeded by his son George IV.

Legge, Frances Catherine (née Nicholl)
Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
Keen, Robert

Robert Keen was a London wool merchant and an ardent supporter of George Whitefield, the eminent evangelical. Although it is unclear when Keen and Whitefield first came into contact, by the 1760s Whitefield was writing to Keen frequently. In 1763, Keen, along with Daniel West, was given the task of managing Whitefield’s religious enterprises in London (specifically, his Tottenham Court Chapel and the Tabernacle, another London church), which they continued to do after Whitefield’s death. Keen was also one of the four executors of Whitefield’s affairs in England (along with West and Charles Hardy). As a result of his relationship with Whitefield, Keen was introduced to Occom and Whitaker upon their arrival in February 1766. He was a member of the informal committee that collected donations before October 1766 and provided Occom and Whitaker with advice on their route and strategies. Keen also became a member of the English Trust, the formal organization formed in October 1766 to safeguard donations. As secretary and deputy treasurer of the Trust, Keen played an important role in transmitting accounts and correspondence between the Trust and Wheelock during the tour and the long process of Wheelock’s relocation to New Hampshire. Along with fellow Trust members Samuel Savage and John Thornton, Keen continued to provide financial support to Wheelock after the Trust had been exhausted.

Chandler, Samuel
Smith, John

John Smith was an affluent Boston merchant who supported Wheelock’s school throughout the 1760s. It is likely that Smith and Wheelock were introduced by George Whitefield or someone similarly involved in evangelical and missionary efforts in the British Atlantic world: John Smith made somewhat regular trips to London for business, and had been in contact with Whitefield since the 1740s. Like the other Boston merchants who supported Moor’s Indian Charity School (including Moses Peck, William Hyslop, and Nathaniel Eells), Smith traded with Wheelock and kept him up to date on political developments in Boston, especially as they concerned attitudes towards Moor’s Indian Charity School. However, Smith was better educated (and likely more affluent) than the other merchants that Wheelock worked with, and, correspondingly, played a more important role than his brethren in Wheelock’s efforts. Smith publicized the school independently (his letter to an unnamed friend, catalogued as 764318.2, is one of the most cited letters on the organization of Moor’s) and assisted Wheelock in publishing the Narratives. John Smith’s greatest contribution to Wheelock’s design was his support during Samson Occom and Nathaniel Whitaker’s fundraising tour of Great Britain (1765-1768). Smith set out for Britain in July 1765 to improve his health, and while there, acted as a vanguard for Occom and Whitaker. He managed their correspondence, suggested destinations, and served on an ad hoc advisory council that included George Whitefield, Samuel Savage, Robert Keen, and several other influential men. The pace of the journey caught up with John Smith, however, and he died in 1768 while in Britain.

Hastings, Selina (née Shirley)

Selina Hastings, better known as the Countess of Huntington or Lady Huntington, was an evangelical English aristocrat and one of the many George Whitefield devotees to meet with Nathaniel Whitaker and Samson Occom during their fundraising tour of Great Britain (1765-1768). Moor’s Indian Charity School was, for a brief time, among the objects of Lady Huntington’s charity. Lady Huntington first discovered evangelism in 1739, when she converted to Methodism. By 1744, she had embraced Calvinism instead and become a devotee of George Whitefield—such a prominent one, in fact, that he bequeathed his Bethesda orphanage to her (she did not prove to be a successful steward: the deputy she appointed was so disliked that the locals burned Bethesda down, and the property was confiscated after the Revolution). Lady Huntington was known for promoting evangelism among the aristocracy, providing dissenters with opportunities for ministerial education, establishing chapels, and mollifying the Church of England’s attitude towards dissenters. When Lady Huntington finally seceded from the Church of England in 1782, she opened Lady Huntington’s Connexion, an organization that ordained evangelical ministers and sent them out as itinerant preachers. However, her controversial efforts caught up with her. She became increasingly paranoid during the last decades of her life (the 1770s and 1780s), and died in debt.

Stennett, Samuel
Brewer, Samuel

Samuel Brewer was a minister who served for 50 years at the Broad Street Church, also called the Stepney Meeting, the largest of the dissenting congregations (Congregational or Presbyterian) of London. Starting in the late 17th century, many dissenters, separatists, and independents congregated in Stepney, now a working-class and immigrant neigborhood in London's east end, but originally a village developed around the Church of St. Dunstan's on the outskirts of the city. Brewer took over the ministry at Stepney in 1746, when the congregation had dwindled, and increased attendance over the years, leaving a very successful church at his death in 1796. Though an independent, he was friendly with clergy from the Church of England, and was part of the group of eminent clergymen clustered around the evangelical preacher George Whitefield, his particular friend, who welcomed Occom and Whitaker when they arrived in London in 1765. Occom calls Brewer "a warm Servant of Jesus Christ," and records preaching at Mr. Brewer's meeting several times to crowded audiences who made generous collections for the Indian Charity School. Robert Keen mentioned Brewer as part of a group that met weekly to advise Occom and Nathaniel Whitaker on their activities and send letters of introduction and recommendation to the leading men of surrounding churches. Whitaker urged Wheelock to write to Brewer, among other energetic supporters, but there is no evidence that he did so.

Secker, Thomas
Drummond, Robert Hay
Hotham, Charles
Thornton, John

John Thornton was born in Yorkshire on April 1, 1720. As a young man, Thornton inherited money from his father Robert Thornton, who was the Director of the Bank of England, which he used to begin his career as a merchant. In 1753, Thornton married Lucy Watson, with whom he had four children. Watson had a Christianizing influence on Thornton, which ultimately led to his 1754 conversion to evangelical Anglicanism under Henry Venn, the curate of Clapham. Thornton's and Venn’s sons would continue their fathers’ religious traditions, going on to form the “Clapham sect,” an influential group of evangelical Christians who championed social reforms. As a result of his conversion, Thornton pursued charity just as much as trade, a major part of which involved managing the English Trust that oversaw the funds Occom and Whitaker collected for Wheelock’s Indian Charity School. Thornton met and hosted Occom several times during his stay in England, and eventually became the Treasurer of the Trust. After Wheelock moved the School to Hanover, however, he focused on the establishment of Dartmouth College to educate Anglo-American men as missionaries, and was accused of using the Trust's funds to this end. This shift in focus contributed to the rift that developed between Occom and Wheelock upon Occom’s return to America –- a rift Thornton tried to repair. Thornton thought of Occom as an equal and, in his role as Treasurer of the Trust, often reminded Wheelock of Occom's vital role in securing the funds that made the School possible. Thornton financed Occom's further missionary activities and insured that Wheelock did not forget Occom's hard work and Christian morals. In addition, Wheelock –- who knew that Occom respected Thornton –- often called upon the merchant when he himself could not convince Occom to undertake further missionary activity. The exchanges between Wheelock and Thornton ended once Wheelock had used up the funds that Occom had raised in England, yet Occom and Thornton kept in touch up through the Revolutionary War, with Thornton remaining one of Occom's most prominent supporters. He died on November 7th, 1790 as one of the wealthiest men in England, despite giving away nearly half his salary each year. In 1828, Thornton's role in the establishment of Dartmouth was memorialized in the College's naming of Thornton Hall.

Newton, Samuel
Wesley, John
Wilberforce, Hannah
Jay, James
Penn, Thomas
Thomas, W.
Meller, Matt
Pearse, Sarah
Pollard, Mary
Occom, Mary (née Fowler)

Mary Occom (née Fowler) was a Montaukett woman who married Samson Occom. Although information about her is limited and often comes from male, Anglo-American sources, it offers a tantalizing glimpse of her strength, as well as an alternative to the Eleazar Wheelock-centered narrative of Occom’s life that often dominates the latter’s biography. Mary was born into the influential Fowler family at Montauk, Long Island. She met Samson during his missionary service there (1749-1761). Mary studied at Samson’s school along with her brothers David and Jacob, and was almost certainly literate. She and Samson married in 1751. Wheelock and several other Anglo-American powers opposed their union because they worried it might distract Occom from being a missionary (as, indeed, family life did), and thus many scholars have read in Samson and Mary’s marriage an act of resistance against Samson’s domineering former teacher. Little information about the minutiae of Mary’s life survives, but existing sources speak volumes about her character and priorities. In front of Anglo-American missionaries visiting the Occoms' English-style house at Mohegan, Mary would insist on wearing Montaukett garb and, when Samson spoke to her in English, she would only reply in Montaukett, despite the fact that she was fluent in English. Mary Occom was, in many ways, Wheelock’s worst fear: that his carefully groomed male students would marry un-Anglicized Indian women. It is not a stretch to imagine that Mary provided much of the incentive for Wheelock to begin taking Indian girls into his school, lest his other protégés replicate Samson’s choice. Much of our information about Mary comes from between 1765 and 1768, when Samson was fundraising in Great Britain. Despite promising to care for Samson’s wife and family (at the time they had seven children), Wheelock, by every objective measure, failed to do so, and Mary’s complaints are well documented. Hilary Wyss reads in Wheelock’s neglect (and in letters from the time) a more sinister story, and concludes that on some level Wheelock was holding Samson’s family hostage, in return for Occom curtailing his political beliefs on the Mason Case. Wyss also notes Mary’s remarkable survivance in this situation. Mary drew on various modes of contact, from letters to verbal communication with influential women (including Sarah Whitaker, the wife of Samson’s traveling companion, and Wheelock’s own daughters), to shame Wheelock into action and demand what she needed. One of the major struggles in Mary’s life, and in Samson’s, was with their sons. Both Aaron and Benoni failed to live up to their parents’ expectations. Aaron attended, and left, Moor’s Indian Charity School three times, and both Aaron and Benoni struggled with alcohol and refused to settle down. The Occom daughters did not cause similar problems. Given the nature of existing sources, little is known about Mary after Samson and Wheelock lessened their communication in 1771. Joanna Brooks has conjectured that Mary was likely influential in Samson’s Mohegan community involvement later in life, for instance, in his continued ministry to Mohegan and, perhaps, his increasingly vehement rejection of Anglo-American colonial practices.

Buell, Samuel

Buell was a popular Presbyterian minister during the second half of the 18th century in Long Island, as well as a close friend of Samson Occom. He was ordained in November 1743, and was a popular itinerant minister before settling at Easthampton. He preached at Occom's ordination, published the sermon in 1761 to raise funds for Occom (he also wrote the letter addressed to Bostwick prefacing his publication), and stayed in close contact with Occom even after Occom's public break from Wheelock. Occom's diary is full of references to visiting Buell and to their close friendship. During the Revolution, Buell was the only minister on Long Island for 40 miles, and was very active in assisting the American cause. He also founded Clinton Academy on Long Island in 1785, which was the first private school chartered by the New York Board of Regents. This academy was also remarkable in that it admitted women. Multiple historical sources have misconstrued Samuel Buell as Sol or Solomon Buell, likely because Buell sometimes signed his name Sa.l, a creative abbreviation of Samuel. However, there was no Reverend Solomon Buell in Easthampton, or, it seems, Long Island, in the second half of the 18th century: Samuel had no brothers, and were there to be two Reverend S. Buell's within 10 miles of one another during the same period, related or not, doubtlessly someone would have commented on it. In addition, the handwriting in letters ascribed to "Sol" and those assigned to Samuel is identical. Lastly, the only source besides collection manuscript 765530.3 describing a "Solomon Buell" is an anthology of letters from the Revolution, which contain letters from a Rev. Sol. Buell, or S. Buell, about aiding the American cause. These letters correspond well with descriptions of Samuel's life in an 1809 biography of his life, and, as he was the only Reverend but one for 40 miles during the Revolution, it is likely that these letters belong to him.

Wheatley, Susanna

Susanna Wheatley was the mistress of Phillis Wheatley, a slave who became famous as the as poet and the first African-American woman to be published. In 1741, Wheatley married John Wheatley, a prosperous tailor, merchant, moneylender and constable of Boston. In 1761 John purchased a young African girl who had been kidnapped from West Africa to be Susanna's servant. They named her Phillis, after the ship that transported her. As active Congregationalists, they felt it their duty to teach the girl to read the Bible. Phillis showed uncommon aptitude and was soon reading Greek and Latin as well as English. Susanna Wheatley was engaged in missionary work through correspondence (her correspondence with Occom dates from 1765), financial donations, and entertaining guests, including Presbyterian and Anglican Methodist missionaries who stayed in the Wheatley house in Boston. Phillis was allowed to mix freely with political, religious, and socially prominent guests. When she began writing poetry, often dedicated to Susanna's extended family and influential acquaintances, Susanna encouraged and promoted her through a series of drawing room performances. Not able to find a publisher in Boston, Susanna sent Phillis to England with the Wheatley son Nathaniel, where, through her connections to the evangelical George Whitefield, Phillis met Selina, Countess of Huntingdon, who became her patron, and helped publish her collection of verse in 1773. When Susanna Wheatley died in 1774 after a long illness, Phillis wrote to John Thornton, the English philanthropist and treasurer of the Trust for Wheelock's Indian School, "By the great loss I have sustain'd of my best friend, I feel like One forsaken by her parent in a desolate Wilderness." Although critics debate Phillis' status in the Wheatley home, in a letter to her friend Obour Tanner, Phillis thanked Susanna Wheatley for adopting her and treating her "more like her child than her servant."

Shaw, Nathaniel

Captain Nathaniel Shaw was one of the wealthiest merchants in New London during the mid-18th century. In the early 1730s, after building a fortune through sea trade with Ireland, he settled in New London to oversee his business. Captain Shaw was sympathetic to the Company for Propagation of the Gospel in New England and the Parts Adjacent in America (often called the New England Company), and assisted them by transmitting money to Samson Occom in the 1750s, when the New England Company was providing him with financial support. Captain Shaw also had a private trade relationship with Occom, and sold him many household supplies and much of the equipment for his house at Mohegan. However, while Occom was in England (late 1765-mid 1768), Shaw refused to supply Mary Occom with goods, which put her in severe straits. Eleazar Wheelock hypothesized that Shaw was lashing out at Mary over Samson’s stance in the Mason Case, which, along with other circumstances, had turned the New England Company vehemently against Wheelock and Occom. However, it is perhaps more likely that Shaw refused to supply Mary because Wheelock had shown no indication that he planned to pay Occom’s debts (see 768114). During the Revolution, Captain Shaw and his son Nathaniel Shaw Jr., who took over much of the business around 1763, were noted patriots. They opened their mansion to wounded sailors, as well as to George Washington himself, helped to organize New London’s participation in the war, and turned their merchant ships into a privateering fleet.

DeBerdt, Dennys

Dennys DeBerdt was a London merchant of Dutch descent, a dissenter who took an avid interest in American affairs and politics. Although he was not especially prominent in British eyes, many Americans, including Wheelock, venerated him as a valuable ally. DeBerdt tried to help Wheelock secure a charter for Moor's, but his efforts failed because the Connecticut Assembly was opposed. Otherwise, DeBerdt helped Wheelock in much the same way as other supporters did: he collected and forwarded donations and circulated information. He also hosted Occom, Whitaker, and J. Smith on their fundraising tour. In 1765, the Massachusetts Assembly elected DeBerdt as their agent in London, a post he held until his death in 1770. He also served as an agent for the Assemblies of Connecticut and Delaware. He frequently advocated for American interests in London, and was instrumental in the repeal of the Stamp Act. DeBerdt invested heavily in American trade, with poor results for his estate. Perhaps because he was a Dissenter and enjoyed limited opportunities in England, he thought American religious freedom was well worth defending. Virtually all correspondence between DeBerdt and Wheelock dates from between 1757 and 1763. DeBerdt's last letter to Wheelock was written in 1763, and Wheelock wrote to DeBerdt only sporadically after that (his last two letters are dated October 1765 and February 1767). It is not clear why the two men stopped corresponding.

Uppucquiyantup, Joseph
Hedges, Ben
Wentworth, John

Sir John Wentworth was the last of the Royal Governors of the Province of New Hampshire. He served as governor from 1767-1775, succeeding his uncle Benning Wentworth. He also shares a name with his grandfather, John Wentworth (1671-1730), who served as Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of New Hampshire from 1717-1730. During his tenure, Wentworth worked to develop the interior of New Hampshire through the creation of the five original counties, the granting of tracts of land and the building of roads between the seacoast and the Connecticut River. He also secured the land and signed the charter for Dartmouth College in 1769. Wentworth remained loyal to the crown throughout his time in office. The increasing tensions created by his loyalist sentiments in the years leading up to the American Revolution eventually ended his reign as governor in 1775. Wentworth was later appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia.

Fundraising Tour of Great Britain
After many months of planning and shifting personnel, Occom, accompanied by the minister Nathaniel Whitaker, sets sail in December 1765 for a two-and-a-half year tour of England and Scotland in order to solicit contributions to Wheelock’s Indian Charity School and missionary efforts. Introduced to aristocrats and prominent clergy by the minister George Whitefield, Occom preaches many sermons, travels widely, and collects a large sum of money.
Occom’s inoculation
On March 11, 1766, during their tour of London, Nathaniel Whitaker inoculates Occom against smallpox, a controversial practice that involves inserting scabs into an incision, causing a mild case of the disease, which produces immunity to it.
HomeSamson Occom, journal, 1765 November 21
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