« AnteriorContinuar »
ously perfumed with devotion every day; but, alas! can we shut the Devil out of them? No: go where we will, we shall still find a devil nigh unto us. Only when we come to heaven we shall be out of his reach for ever. He was hissed out of Paradise, and shall never enter it any more.'
I wonder what he would have said on that text, "Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you"? Certainly this cannot consist with the idea of his omnipresence? Adieu, my dear friend. Let us keep out of his way at bed, board, study, and church.
Our love to your fireside.
P. S. Were I to preach on the subject of witchcraft, I would have this for my text: "O foolish Galatians! who hath bewitched you?" I would first endeavour to shew that people may be bewitched; secondly, that they are great fools for being bewitched; and, thirdly, that it concerns them to enquire who has bewitched them; and my inference should be, if there were no fools, there would be no witchcraft; or rather I would transpose the second and third heads. The same inference would come out better.
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
NEW YORK, Nov. 21, 1789.
MY DEAR SIR, —I have been to Philadelphia. there are in general well, but all have had the influenza. Dr. Clarkson and family spoke of you in terms of warm affection. I did not see Dr. Rush, except at a distance, in the street. Your packet for Trenchard I left at his house; but, as he had come to New York, I did not see him. Upon my return home, I found that Barnard had arrived; and by him I send you the pamphlets you wanted,
which are included in my 45th and 47th volumes. To these I add a publication on the same subject, made by our Assembly, in 1773. What an uproar the President made to the eastward! Should his successor expect the same attentions, how could they be refused? It would not do to tell him his merit was not equal to his predecessors. I don't like the precedent. Even Mr. Secretary has had his share, too. He seems to have been married to nobody, on purpose to furnish an opportunity of telling what a clever fellow he is; and, when this is done, he is formally unmarried, by "best authority." How perfectly farcical! Such things tend to disgrace us, and the story of the virtues of the bridegroom has already occasioned the following:
“The P———t's cat
Caught hold of a rat,
What think you of that!"
I am still unemployed, except in index-making. My Philadelphia friends are anxious for my settling among them, but I am at a loss what to do. However, as I have most of my winter stores laid in, I think I shall content myself where I am 'til spring. Mrs. H. joins me in love to Mrs. B. and yourself. She is but so so, at present. I am, dear sir,
BELKNAP TO HAZARD.
BOSTON, December 17, 1789.
In the appendix to the narrative which you sent me concerning the New Hampshire Grants, there is reference to a report of the Lords of Trade, dated 17 July, 1764,"relative to the disputes that have some years subsisted between the Provinces of N. Hampshire and N.
York concerning the boundary," upon which report the decision of the King in Council of 20th July, 1764, was grounded, whereby Connecticut River was established the boundary. This report I want. Probably it may be in the Secretary's office, at N. York. Will it be too much. trouble for you to inquire; and, if a copy can be obtained without expence, to procure it for me? If it cannot be had in America, I must send to England for it. Therefore, I should be glad to know, as early as possible, whether it can be had here or not. We are all well, and send our love.
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
NEW YORK, Dec. 27, 1789.
MY DEAR SIR, By Captain Barnard I have received your two favors of 12th and 17th inst. I am glad the pamphlets got safely to you. It is not probable that I shall want them very soon, so that you may use them as you find it convenient.
As to "vindicating myself," I think it altogether unnecessary. I have no consciousness of criminality in any one instance, so that I shall have no accusations brought against me where they are most to be feared. Those from other quarters I despise. Though I feel much obliged to you and Mr. Morse for your friendship, I am sorry you have gone to the newspaper for my vindication ; and more so that you have published any extracts from my letters, because this has a direct tendency to introduce an altercation, without convincing a single reader. fully of Dr. Witherspoon's opinion, that a man should never take any notice of a false report. It will die much sooner than it can be killed. Indeed, it cannot be killed at all; but every attempt for this purpose will only serve
to keep it alive. If removal from office fixes a stigma on a man's character, it is done already; and a piece in a newspaper cannot remove it, but only tends to make the stigma more conspicuous. This reminds me of what I once met with in a Presbyterian church to which I went on a particular occasion. After sermon, a man presented his child to be baptized. The minister, instead of saying something (as is usual) upon the nature and design of the ordinance, began with reading the man a pretty smart lecture on the heinousness of his sin, and after that proceeded as usual. My curiosity was excited, and upon inquiry I found that the man had committed fornication with the woman he married, of which this child was the fruit. He had, however, made such acknowledgments to the Session (the representatives of the church) as induced them to admit his child to baptism, and no more ought to have been said about it; but the good man, by his zeal for discipline, propagated the scandal, and made the offence known to many who would never have heard of it.
People here, and I suppose in most other places, have done talking about my removal from office, and I had almost forgotten it myself; but, in the present dearth of news, I suppose all the printers will eagerly catch at the publication in the Centinel, and I shall once more be kicked from N. Hampshire to Georgia. When I wrote you, the 27th September, I supposed there would be reports about me, and meaned only to enable you to contradict them, as you might meet with them in company; but I never wished to appear in a newspaper. However, it cannot be helped now; but I must beg of you never to "put" me there again.
I shall enquire about "the report," and try to get it you. It is undoubtedly to be had in America.
I suppose Mr. Morse has informed you of the addition to my family. The young gentleman (his name is Erskine), his mother, and the rest of us, are well. We all
send love to Mrs. Belknap, yourself, Mr. and Mrs. Morse, and Susan. I am, dear sir,
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
NEW YORK, 20th Jan., 1790.
MY DEAR SIR, I intended writing by Barnard, but was disappointed, and have known of no private conveyance since, that I recollect. Thank you for your congratulations on the birth of my son. He and his mother are
in good health.
I have spoken to Mr. Allen about your History left in his hands. He has sold but very few. Shall settle with him for them, and receive the remainder.
Shall also write to New Haven, and direct the cash to be sent me for such as are sold, and the unsold copies to be returned. They shall be taken care of till I hear from you what I am to do with them.
Carey has not formally applied to me, but told me, when in Philadelphia, he had applied to you, and mentioned the terms; but I did not consider this as intended to engage I think he bids well. A dollar for so small a matter is no bad price. The packet for him came safe to hand, but I have not known of a private conveyance to Philadelphia since I received it. There is a gentleman now in town by whom I shall send it.
Considering the circumstances of the case, I do not see how you could have vindicated me in any other manner than you did; and, as I mentioned in a former letter, I am obliged to you for your friendly interference. When I saw the extracts, knowing what effects they might have, I felt more than I did on losing my office, and went to our printers and requested them not to publish them. This, I believe, stopped their circulation. However, they