David McClure, letter, to Eleazar Wheelock, 1772 June 30

Author McClure, David

Date30 June, 1772

ms number772380

abstractMcClure writes that he has asked Occom to join the mission, but that Occom states he is in ill health, has too many debts, and that he has been neglected since his return from Great Britain. McClure urges Wheelock to be generous with Occom.

handwritingFormal handwriting is small, but clear and legible.

paperLarge sheet folded in half to make four pages is in good-to-fair condition, with light-to-moderate creasing, staining and wear.


Persistent Identifier
Rev.d and Honor'd Sir/
Thro' divine Goodneſs M.r Frisbie and I had a comfortable journey to this place, where we arrived last Evening & found M.r Occom & famely in usual health; we immediately laid open the busineſs on which we came — It was all new to M.r Occom — neither of your Letters, Sir, have reached him, they have some where unfortunately stopt. The Doctor's Letters to him by us con=tain'd the first intimation he has had re=specting this Miſsion. After conversing on the Opnings & encouragments of our intended Miſ=sion to the Southward, he manifested a desire & willingneſs to join us, but urged his bodily infirmities & involvements ^*^ against undertaking it immediately — And indeed he has had so short notice of it that it would be difficult if not im=practicable for him to set out with us.
I have all along thought till now that he ^[left]* he owes he says ₤50 or^ ^[left]₤60 —^
had a pension of ₤30 Sterl.gr An: from Esq.r Thornton But he says he has had no pension or allowance from him, or any other quarter since he came from England, except two private donations from thence ^amount.g to ₤60 —^. That before he went to England he was under the pay of the Boston board & since his return has been rejected by them & by the School two. And considering what Indian Genius & temper are, has there not, Sir, been too much occasion for him to complain of neglect? he has had to encounter many & great difficulties since his return & would it not, Sir, been good policy if no more & will ^it^ not now be good policy, to make him some small allowance & let him enjoy in some measure the benefit of the monies he was instrumental in obtaining for the use & benefit of the design? So that he might be cut off from any oc=sion to repeat what [illegible]he says M.r Whitefield told him when he left England; "that they had made ^him^ a tool to collect monies for them in England, but when he got to America they would set him adrift." His Character, as far as I can learn in these parts is now good, & the Crimes of intemperance with which he has been charged, are very much extenuated by the temptations he was under. He appears calm & rational, more so than I expected to have found him, respecting the Indian design. I am more & more perswaded of the expediency & advantage of his un=dertaking a Miſsion & ardently hope that God in his
providence will so order & direct that he may join us in the miſsion before us. It would very much ^strengthen^ our hands & encourage us.
In the freedom of Conversation with him he said, many fair promises had been made him but he found they would never fill his belly or cover his back, & that as soon as he could see a prospect & know for certain that [illegible]he could be in a way to discharge his Debts & support his family he would under his infirmity, go. In the Doctor's behalf, [illegible]made an offer of ₤100 Sterl.g Annually & to giave an order on Cap.t Backus for ₤50 LM.y of it to be p.d now & the remainder at the close of the Year, if he would undertake he seem'd to think it would not be sufficient to bear his expences & maintain his numerous famely. I told him should he undertake, I would engage the Doctor's influence with Esq.r Thornton & had not the least doubt but his debts would by that Gentleman be generously discharged. He intimates a design of visiting the Doctor, which hope he will. I have wrote Rev.d Sir, with freedom & [illegible]which I have no apprehension of your blaming me for. M.r Frisbie has had several poor turns since we set out he joins in [illegible]Duty & Affection to the Doctor & famely, with Rev.d & Honor'd Patron
Your dutiful & obliged  humble Servant David Maccluer
^[bottom]Rev.d D.r Wheelock^
[left]P.S. I wrote the D.r ⅌.[illegible] M.rs Payne about 6 Days past — As M.r Occom intends to write the D.r in the proposd Miſsion we must refer to his Letter to know his mind more fully respecting it — — have inclos'd a number of the latest papers from different parts.
from Rev.d M.r Maccluer  June 30. 1772