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members that may be chosen, either to serve from November to March, or afterwards, you may serve me by doing it. I do not recollect where I found, "I will meet them at Philippi;" but somebody had threatened he would do so and so to somebody else (I believe Alexander), and when he was informed of it he replied, "I will meet them at Philippi,"* intimating that he would find [him] there, and not unprepared. I mean to be ready to meet my folks or their report before the new Congress. Love as usual.
P. S. I sent Swediaur to Dr. Franklin, our President.
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
NEW YORK, November 8, 1788.
MY DEAR SIR,It is some time since I have either wrote to or heard from you. The annual business of contracting for the carriage of the mail has lately found me full employ, and does not even now allow me to idle. It is fortunate for me that this hurry happens when my foes are scattered, and thus rendered unable to teaze me. Some of them, I suppose, are politically dead for ever. Notwithstanding their machinations, Providence has thus far defeated their attempts to supplant me.
Inter nos, what would you think of my collection of papers coming to light after lying in obscurity so long? It is likely to be the case. The American Magazine is to appear in a new form, and on an extensive plan, and to be the property of a society of gentlemen, among whom N. W. holds but one share; and I am told he is going to remove from hence to Connecticut, so that he will not
* "Cassius. We'll along ourselves, and meet them at Philippi." (Julius Cæsar, Act IV. Sc. 8.)-Eds.
be the editor. Their plan is to publish 104 pages monthly. 56 of them are to be in the usual magazine style, 24 are to contain State papers, and 24 either historical MSS., such as Winthrop's Journal, or a republication of ancient, valuable, and scarce American histories, such as Smith's of Virginia, &c., &c. N. W. called, to know if I would dispose of my collection for this purpose, informing me that they intended to print in such a way that the State papers and histories might be detached from the Magazine and bound by themselves. After considering of the matter, I concluded to let them have the collection for £500, which they agreed to give. I don't altogether like this way of publishing the papers; but when I reflected on the great uncertainty of my being able to publish them at all, the risque I run by their remaining in statu quo, and the little probability that I should clear £500 by them if I should publish, I thought it best to say yes. The money is to be paid by instalments. All this is inter nos.
Enclosed is a letter from Carey, and another, which I wish to have delivered soon.
Mrs H. joins in love to you and yours with
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
Remember us to Mr. Morse, if he has not left you. How do they like him?
NEW YORK, November 15, 1788.
MY DEAR SIR, -Since my last, I have received yours of 5th inst., with a packet for Spotswood, which shall be forwarded. I am sorry my letter did not arrive before Mr. Morse. It was owing to accident. As I make it a rule to avoid all unnecessary business on the Sabbath, I wrote my letter on Saturday, and something prevented
its being sent to the office. I forgot it till Sabbath evening, after sermon, when I went to the office with it, and was told the mail was gone. I went to the post's quarters, and was informed he had set out "half an hour ago; thus was I obliged to detain it for the succeeding mail, and thus Mr. Morse outrode it. I doubt not the Charlestown people's approving Mr. Morse. He is, undoubtedly, a man of genius; but, among us, he did not do himself justice. His Geography employed (he thought necessarily) so much of his time, that he could not devote enough to his theological studies, and thus injured himself in the opinion of some, who, I am sure, would have been fond of him, could he have studied more. I told him this candidly; and he received the information as from a friend, and allowed the remark to be just. I have a very sincere regard for him, and wish the Charlestown people may be unanimous in their call to him; for I am persuaded they will not do better, and I wish him to have satisfactory evidence that it is his duty to go there. As to us, Christian prudence requires that we should give him up; for, though the majority would be for him, the minority is so respectable that the majority would act unwisely in calling him, as he would in accepting their call. I think I told you the Session had agreed to invite him. for three months longer, and that Mr. Muir's friends were warmly opposed to it, and urged his being invited for two months more. Mr. Morse was informed of this, and, in a letter to Dr. Rodgers, offered such reasons as might be expected from a wise man and a Christian for desiring that the invitation might not be presented, assuring him that he could not accept it. The Session, at a loss to know how to act, desired a meeting of the congregation, that they might be acquainted with their wishes in the case. There was a meeting. Mr. Muir's friends desired that an address, which had been intended to be presented to the Session (censuring their conduct, and calculated to inflame), might
be read, which was agreed to. They then, as if under the influence of infatuation, called for Mr. Morse's letter, which was of a contrary tendency. The contrast was striking, and I suspect produced an effect different from their wishes. It was put to vote whether Mr. Muir should be invited to preach to us two months longer, and carried in the negative, 174 votes against 141. There was indecent warmth on both sides, as is customary in both [such ?] cases; and Mr. Muir's friends were dissatisfied with the decision.
They then thought of the following scheme: That an assistant should be called to each church, and the labours of each confined to the church to which he was called. They consulted me, as a cool, dispassionate man, and I told them it could never be effected. They differed from me in opinion. It happened, providentially, that the Presbytery and Synod (of which they are a part) were both to sit here the next week. They applied to the former about the assistants. They referred it to the latter, who decided against the plan, as creating at present a partial, and leading in the end to a total, division of the churches. When this matter was settled, the Synod appointed occasional supplies for us till May; and among the rest Mr. Muir is to preach 4 Sabbaths, at intervals. His friends now talk of peaceably withdrawing from us in the spring, and building a church for themselves, which will not be displeasing. We have now got to be pretty quiet. But you will easily see that, should Mr. Morse be proposed now, a new flame would be kindled by it. This is the opinion of his friends here ;; and, for the peace of the church, they give him up. Mrs. H. and I hope your next will give us more agreeable intelligence respecting your son. We love you, and sympathize with you in your afflictions, which we pray may be sanctified. Love to Mrs. B. Yours,
BELKNAP TO HAZARD.
BOSTON, 16 Nov., evening, 1788.
DEAR SIR, -I am very glad to hear that you are likely to bring your budget of MSS. to so good a market. I believe it is the best way of disposing of them, provided the purchasers do not fail in the payment. I have one favour to request of you on this occasion. Some time ago, I furnished you with a copy of Governour Shirley's orders to Sir W. Pepperell, when he went to Cape Breton. As I shall make use of this when I write my 2d Vol., I shall be glad to have the credit of midwifeing it into public view myself, and therefore beg you would not part with that in the sale of your collection. I have the original now in my hands, with many other papers relative to that very singular expedition, and I think it most proper that they should all go together. I could wish, also, that you would take off the restriction of secrecy, so far as it relates to the intended publication of the Magazine and its appendage, because I apprehend it may be in my power to set on foot a similar publication here; and the knowledge that such a design is on foot elsewhere may prove a stimulus to the undertaking. Not that I wish to anticipate or prevent any part of the collection there to be exhibited, but to add to the general stock, and let the public have all the materials which can be gathered. I am sensible that the only sure way to preserve manuscripts is to multiply the copies; and I am persuaded that it is, and will be, in my power to procure enough for a pretty tolerable volume or two, or perhaps more, and of such a kind as the gentlemen whom you mention would not be likely to come at.
Mr. Morse left us last Monday, and I suppose you will have seen him before this shall reach you. I think he told me something about this very matter; certainly