Eleazar Wheelock, letter, to Benjamin Forfitt, 1763 September 8

Author Wheelock, Eleazar

Date8 September, 1763

ms number763508.1

abstractWheelock writes to Forfitt thanking him for sending a chest of books for the School, and detailing troubles with the Indians that have prevented the missions of Charles Jeffrey Smith, Occom and Ashpo.

handwritingHand is small and crowded, though mostly legible, with several abbreviations.

paperOne large sheet is in good condition, with light-to-moderate creasing, yellowing and wear. There are some ink blots in the middle of the page resulting in very minor loss of text.

inkLight brown

noteworthyThere is no signature, and the last paragraph is deleted, which suggests that this is a draft.

Persistent Identifier
Dear Sir.
Yours of 27.th Apr.l laſt, came ſafe with the Cheſt of Books for this School &c. y.e 20.th of laſt month; and I take them as an Anſwer of Prayer, and a renewed Teſtimony of God's Favour for this Infant Inſtitution; and by God's Help I will diſcharge the Sacred Truſt (for So I look upon it) in the beſt manner. The Collection I eſteem very valuable and well calcu­lated for the Deſign proposed. May God reward the pious Do­­nors a thouſand fold for this and all their Abundant Charities and Labours of Love for the periſhing Souls of men, as I truſt he has, and forever will your dear Brother, who was the principle Inſtrument in procuring this Benefaction.
The Expreſsions of Kindneſs in yours refreſh and incourage my Heart. tho' the preſent Rupture with the Indians has drawn a Cloud over the whole Deſign, but I truſt it is not abiding. it looks like a dying Struggle, and I hope will prove to be the lasſt Effort of Satan to Secure those who have been for ſo long a Time peacibly in his Chains.
Sam.l Aſhpo, an Indian of the Mohegan Tribe, who has been for a Time in this School, and was examined and approved by a number of Miniſters of this Government laſt May, Sat out on his Miſsion, y.e 6th of laſt month. and as I have heard nothing from him ſince, I conclude he has got [gap: stain] into the Indian Country. And as he deſigned to go among them in Indian Habit, I hope he will not fall a Sacrifice to [gap: stain] their Rage. and who knows how much Good God may make him an Inſtrument of. and if God Should mercifully [gap: stain][guess: Succeed] his Endeavours at Such a Time, when no engliſh Miſsionary dares to goe among them, it muſt needs raiſe the Reputation of the Plan we have been purſuing.
M.r Charles Jeffry Smith, an excellent Youth was ordained in my Pulpit June 30. and Sat out on a Miſsion to remote Tribes. July 4.th, was driven back from the Six Nations to Albany, by an alarm of an Army of the Enemy approaching. but it proved to be made by a few bad Fellows among themſelves and Whether M.r Smith had returnd to those Nations, or not I can't tell.
M.r Occom Sat out on his Miſsion, and, I hear, went as far as to the Mohock Country but the Apprehenſions of Danger were Such that he returned. The Combination among the Nations is very extenſive, and their Rage very bitter; but by the laſt accounts they have met with Such Repulſes, as give us Hopes that they will now Soon be diſcouraged.
I have Sent M.r De Berdt Some Materials by Gen.l Lyman and Col.o Dyar, in order to obtain the Royal Favour of an In­­corporation, and a Grant of Lands in the Indian Country in Favo.r of this Deſign. You have likely heard or will hear Something of it. If this Suit Should be Succeſsful, I truſt God will also put it into the Hearts of Friends to contribute to the Furtherance of the Deſign of Introducing Religion, and Learning among them and, as a means thereof to lead them into an underſtanding of Agricul­ ­ture & Manufacture &c.
Letter to M r B. Forfitt Sep.t 8. 1763.