Eleazar Wheelock, letter, to John Thornton, 1772 May 23

Author Wheelock, Eleazar[pers0036.ocp]

23 May 1772[1772-05-23]

ms number772323

[note (type: abstract): Wheelock writes to Thornton regarding several matters, including Thornton's warnings about Wheelock’s son Ralph, and Thornton's offer to pay Wheelock’s debt. He gives news of Occom and other potential missionaries.][note (type: handwriting): Small, formal handwriting is not Wheelock's; it is clear and legible.][note (type: paper): Large sheet folded in half to make four pages is in good-to-fair condition, with light-to moderate staining, creasing and wear.][note (type: ink): Black-brown. On two verso, the ink has burned away the first word of the second line of the third paragraph.][note (type: noteworthy): This letter is marked “Copy.” Comments about Ralph Wheelock are very similar to those written to Thornton in manuscript 772523.][note (type: signature): The signature is not Wheelock's.]
Persistent Identifier
My dear [& | and]&and [Hon:d | Honoured]Hon:dHonoured [ſir | Sir]ſirSir//
Your very kind and refreshing favor of [Feb.y | February]Feb.yFebruary 28[1772-02-28] came safe to hand the 16 [Inst:t | instant]Inst:tinstant[1772-05-16] a few days after my return from Connecticut[place0048.ocp]. You write, dear [ſir | sir]ſirsir, like one who really understands the things whereof you write: And I verily believe you have [learnt | learned]learntlearned what in some measure what walking with God [& | and]&and living upon God mean, [& | and]&and to know many of the devices of our subtle enemy[& | and]&and ^[above] and^and watchful adv=[illegible]versary, [& | and]&and the many ways we do or may give him ad=vantage against us, in these things I heartily join with you [& | and]&and I long to come up sides with you in the experi=ence of them. But in nothing do you more testify the sincerity [& | and]&and strength of brotherly Love [& | and]&and [christain | Christian]christainChristian friend=ship than in that [unresevedneſs | unresevedness]unresevedneſsunresevedness with which you tell me "you think my parental regard for my son Ralph[pers0578.ocp], has blinded my eyes to some misconduct of his;" but I think [dearſir | dear sir]dearſirdear sir, you ought to have gone further [& | and]&and hinted (at least) some instance or instances, [& | and]&and not suffer me to be an Eli. I cant so much as [gueſs | guess]gueſsguess at an instance you can mean. perhaps you was afraid it might fret a wound that is just healed, but I [aſsure | assure]aſsureassure you, you have no need to be upon the reserve on that [Acco:t | account]Acco:taccount I have been often tried with suggestions and charges of this kind which have ori=ginated only from one who never could be [perswaded | persuaded]perswadedpersuaded to refer the matter to any impartial decision. And I verily believe, were you examine into that matter you would find the matter ^[above] Charge^Charge as [groundleſs | groundless]groundleſsgroundless, as was the report that [M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. [K–d | Kirkland]K–dKirkland[pers0315.ocp] was starving [thro' | through]thro'through my defect, while your hands [& | and]&and mine were constantly open for his supply [& | and]&and nothing was wanting but his accepting it at any time.
I have by no means been blind to his im=perfections, nor wanting in sorrow on that [Acco:t | account]Acco:taccount [& | and]&and I hope I have not failed of using utmost endeavours to cure them; but ^[left] To [Esq.r | Esq.]Esq.rEsq. Thornton[pers0541.ocp]^To [Esq.r | Esq.]Esq.rEsq. Thornton[pers0541.ocp] ^[left] May 23. 1772[1772-05-23].^May 23. 1772[1772-05-23].
I think I must in justice say, I know of no blot upon his moral ^[above] or religious^or religious Character. The most religious sort of people are his closest and most intimate friends. But it is likely he will not stand in the way of any long, he has been almost two years on the verge of Eternity, and is now given over, [& | and]&and his case pronounced incurable by Physicians. He has looked upon such treatment to be hard [& | and]&and [unchristain | unchristian]unchristainunchristian and has greatly longed [& | and]&and earnestly plead [& | and]&and [intreated | entreated]intreatedentreated to be informed what he has done to de=serve it from man, but never has obtained it to this day. I ask your prayers for him that the severe [dis[illegible]ciplin | discipline]dis[illegible]ciplindiscipline he has been so long held under from the hand of God, may become effectual to purge away his [Droſs | dross]Droſsdross [&c. | etc.]&c.etc.
I am much obliged to you for your Extract from [D.r | Dr.]D.rDr. Erskine[pers0185.ocp]'s Letter — [M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. [K.d | Kirkland]K.dKirkland[pers0315.ocp] is [doubtleſs | doubtless]doubtleſsdoubtless much im=posed upon. He told me on his return from Boston[place0013.ocp] last [Octb.r | October]Octb.rOctober[1771-10] that he knew nothing of his having received part of his support from the [Scotish | Scottish]ScotishScottish Society[org0096.ocp] nor did he understand him=self to be in any Connection with them. to the same purpose he told others.
There has been I hear a Clamor in Boston[place0013.ocp] that this school[org0098.ocp] is or will soon be in episcopal hands, [& | and]&and the principal reason I have heard [aſsign'd | assigned]aſsign'dassigned as the ground of their confidence that it will be so, has been because a num=ber of the [honble | honourable]honblehonourable Trust in England[org0103.ocp] are of the denomination; But these I imagine are only conjectures of men of a party spirit, who measure all others by thems^[above] e^ellves. I trust the providence of God will refute all such Calumnies in due time.
[Meſs.rs | Messrs.]Meſs.rsMessrs. [Maccluer | McClure]MaccluerMcClure[pers0368.ocp] [& | and]&and Frisbie[pers0209.ocp] were seperated to the sacred ministry by solemn fasting [& | and]&and prayer, with laying on hands of the Presbytery[org0117.ocp], in this place, last Wednesday[1772-05-20]. I am now waiting for advice from the board of Correspondents in New [Jersie | Jersey]JersieJersey[org0069.ocp], that they have provided a [Misionary | Missionary]MisionaryMissionary [& | and]&and Interpreters to accompany them, which I expect by a special post on which advice these young men expect to set out on a Journey of about 800 miles.
I wrote you la Hasty line from Hartford[place0097.ocp] some weeks ago, in which I informed you of a great [& | and]&and glorious work
of God's grace at New [Jersie | Jersey]JersieJersey College[org0067.ocp], a Seminary which God has [honor'd | honored]honor'dhonored with such seasons from time to time, above any on the Continent.
Your kind offer, good [ſir | sir]ſirsir, to discharge my personal debts for me, has reached my very heart, how great is that [goodneſs | goodness]goodneſsgoodness that has [honor'd | honored]honor'dhonored you with ability [& | and]&and a will to do it. I pray the Lord to reward you, [& | and]&and he will not be forgetful to do it. I thank­fully accept it, [& | and]&and will draw on you for it, as soon as I can know what my [Acco.ts | accounts]Acco.tsaccounts are.
[M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. Occom[pers0030.ocp] is near 200 Miles from me, Mohe=gan[place0143.ocp] (in which he lives) is under the care of the London Board in Bos­ton[org0095.ocp] who [imploy | employ]imployemploy the neighbouring ministers as their [miſsionaries | missionaries]miſsionariesmissionaries to preach Lectures to them [& | and]&and other parties of Indians on the Sea Shore. If I should encourage [M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. Occom[pers0030.ocp] to do any thing, as a Minister in pay, it would not fail to give great offence.
By the favor of a friend I was favor'd served with a Copy of a vote of the Society in Scotland[org0096.ocp], dated [Edenb.r | Edinburgh]Edenb.rEdinburgh[place0066.ocp] [Jan.y | January]Jan.yJanuary 28. 1771[1771-01-28] wherein they continue £50 to [M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. Kirkland[pers0315.ocp] [& | and]&and grant £20 to [M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. Occom[pers0030.ocp] [thro' | through]thro'through the hands of their board in Boston[org0011.ocp]; which I hear they neglect to pay [& | and]&and I don't think they ever will.
When I was in Connecticut[place0048.ocp] I had a good [Acco:t | account]Acco:taccount of his Character, [& | and]&and Conduct of late, I shall be glad to serve him in any thing ^[above] with^within my power. I wish with all my heart he was disposed to take a long tour to a remote tribe near Muskingum[place0148.ocp] to which these young men are appointed, and a Tribe which speaks his Language. I will write him [& | and]&and inform him of your Concern for him, [& | and]&and friendly thoughts towards him, [& | and]&and will propose to him his accepting such a [miſsion | mission]miſsionmission.
Governor Wentworth[pers0567.ocp] wrote me some months ago that he had sent by a [veſsel | vessel]veſselvessel for 12 Indian Boys for this School[org0098.ocp] from [S.t | St.]S.tSt. John's[place0220.ocp] [&c. | etc.]&c.etc. [& | and]&and that he thought probable he should obtain them. I have yet heard nothing of the [succeſs | success]succeſssuccess of this attempt.
[M.r | Mr.]M.rMr. Ripley[pers0444.ocp] a young preacher, one of my Pupils, designs by divine leave to set out on his [miſsion | mission]miſsionmission to Canada[place0303.ocp] in Ju[illegible]ne[1772-06] or July[1772-07], with mr Taylor[pers0703.ocp] who was for some years a Captive there, [& | and]&and on that as well as many
other [Acco:ts | accounts]Acco:tsaccounts suitable to be [imployed | employed]imployedemployed in that service, by these with the [aſsistance | assistance]aſsistanceassistance of Governor Wentworth[pers0567.ocp] (who has earnestly re=commended the design to the [Commander in cheif | Commander-in-chief]Commander in cheifCommander-in-chief there) [& | and]&and also of [m.r | Mr.]m.rMr. Austin[pers0062.ocp] a pious young minister at [Mont Real | Montreal]Mont RealMontreal[place0145.ocp] [& | and]&and other friends to the cause in those parts. I hope in God a way may be [op'ned | opened]op'nedopened, to obtain Children from those Tribes: perhaps the greatest difficulty will be from the opposition of their [preists | priests]preistspriests.
The Narrative [herwith | herewith]herwithherewith enclosed is an un=questionable truth extensively known [& | and]&and universally [beleived | believed]beleivedbelieved in that part of the Country. I was personally acquainted with the subject of it in her low estate; [& | and]&and since her re=moval to Lebanon[place0122.ocp] have been intimately acquainted with her, [& | and]&and my heart often refreshed by her discourse for a number of years before I left Connecticut[place0048.ocp].
It is not [poſsable | possible]poſsablepossible you should have the [Acco:t | account]Acco:taccount with [gap: tear][guess (maggiec): all]all that life [& | and]&and spirit, thus at [2.d | second]2.dsecond hand, as you might have it from the original with the many Circumstances [& | and]&and natu­ral remarks, which a present [sence | sense]sencesense [& | and]&and [impreſsion | impression]impreſsionimpression of the things themselves enable her to make which can never be fully described by pen.
And with this I present my Duty to you [& | and]&and the Rest of the [honble | honourable]honblehonourable Trust[org0103.ocp]. And am with high esteem [& | and]&and much Affection
Your much obliged, [& | and]&and most obedient Humble Servant [illegible]Eleazar Wheelock[pers0036.ocp]
Copy To John Thornton[pers0541.ocp] [Esq.r | Esq.]Esq.rEsq.
Document Summary

People identified in this document:

id Text in document Role in header Authorized Name
pers0578.ocp Ralph mentioned Wheelock, Rodulphus
pers0315.ocp M. r Mr. K–d Kirkland mentioned Kirkland, Samuel
pers0541.ocp Thornton recipient Thornton, John
pers0185.ocp D. r Dr. Erskine mentioned Erskine, John
pers0315.ocp M. r Mr. K. d Kirkland mentioned Kirkland, Samuel
pers0368.ocp Maccluer McClure mentioned McClure, David
pers0209.ocp Frisbie mentioned Frisbie, Levi
pers0030.ocp M. r Mr. Occom mentioned Occom, Samson
pers0315.ocp Kirkland mentioned Kirkland, Samuel
pers0567.ocp Governor Wentworth mentioned Wentworth, John
pers0444.ocp M. r Mr. Ripley mentioned Ripley, Sylvanus
pers0703.ocp mr Taylor mentioned Taylor
pers0062.ocp m. r Mr. Austin mentioned Austin
pers0036.ocp Eleazar Wheelock writer Wheelock, Eleazar
pers0541.ocp John Thornton recipient Thornton, John

Places identified in this document:

id Text in document Authorized Name
place0095.ocp Hanover Hanover
place0048.ocp Connecticut Connecticut
place0013.ocp Boston Boston
place0097.ocp Hartford Hartford
place0143.ocp Mohe= gan Mohegan
place0066.ocp Edenb. r Edinburgh Edinburgh
place0148.ocp Muskingum Muskingum County
place0220.ocp S. t St. John's Saint John
place0303.ocp Canada Canada
place0145.ocp Mont Real Montreal Montreal
place0122.ocp Lebanon Lebanon

Organizations identified in this document:

id Text in document Authorized Name
org0096.ocp ScotishScottish Society Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge
org0098.ocp this school Moor’s Indian Charity School
org0103.ocp honblehonourable Trust in England Trust in England
org0117.ocp the Presbytery Grafton Presbytery
org0069.ocp board of Correspondents in New JersieJersey The New York/New Jersey Board of the Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge
org0067.ocp New JersieJersey College Princeton University
org0095.ocp London Board in Bos­ton The Company for Propagation of the Gospel in New England and the parts adjacent in America
org0096.ocp Society in Scotland Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge
org0011.ocp board in Boston Boston Board of the Society in Scotland for Propagating Christian Knowledge
org0098.ocp this School Moor’s Indian Charity School
org0103.ocp honblehonourable Trust Trust in England

Dates identified in this document:

Standard Form Text
1772-05-23 May 23. 1772.
1772-02-28 Feb.yFebruary 28
1772-05-16 16 Inst:tinstant
1772-05-23 May 23. 1772
1771-10 last Octb.rOctober
1772-05-20 last Wednesday
1771-01-28 Jan.yJanuary 28. 1771
1772-06 June
1772-07 July

Regularized text:

Type Original Regularized
modernization ſir Sir
modernization ſir sir
variation learnt learned
variation christain Christian
modernization unresevedneſs unresevedness
modernization dearſir dear sir
modernization gueſs guess
modernization aſsure assure
variation perswaded persuaded
modernization groundleſs groundless
modernization M.r Mr.
modernization Esq.r Esq.
variation unchristain unchristian
variation intreated entreated
variation dis[illegible]ciplin discipline
modernization Droſs dross
modernization &c. etc.
modernization D.r Dr.
modernization doubtleſs doubtless
variation Scotish Scottish
modernization Meſs.rs Messrs.
variation Maccluer McClure
variation Jersie Jersey
modernization goodneſs goodness
variation imploy employ
modernization miſsionaries missionaries
modernization miſsion mission
modernization veſsel vessel
modernization S.t St.
modernization succeſs success
variation imployed employed
modernization aſsistance assistance
variation Commander in cheif Commander-in-chief
modernization m.r Mr.
variation Mont Real Montreal
variation preists priests
variation herwith herewith
variation beleived believed
modernization poſsable possible
variation sence sense
modernization impreſsion impression

Expanded abbreviations:

Abbreviation Expansion
& and
Hon:d Honoured
Feb.y February
Inst:t instant
Acco:t account
K–d Kirkland
thro' through
K.d Kirkland
Octb.r October
aſsign'd assigned
honble honourable
honor'd honored
Acco.ts accounts
Edenb.r Edinburgh
Jan.y January
Acco:ts accounts
op'ned opened
2.d second

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Summary of errors found in this document:

Number of dates with invalid 'when' attributes: 0
Number of nested "hi" tags: (consider merging the @rend attributes, or using other tags) 0
Number of tags with invalid 'rend' attributes: 0 (out of 44)
Number of people/places/organizations with unknown keys: 0 (out of 43)
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Mixed case attribute values in header (potential error): 0 (out of 156)