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Full text of "History of the Protestant Episcopal Church, in the county of Westchester, from its foundation, 1693, to 1853"

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op THE 






&.. D. 1693? TO A. D. 1853. 



" The Society for Propagating the Gospel is- the brightest light shining in the 
candlestick of the Reforfflationi; it has rlon§ , more, and is doing more, for the 
cause of Christ, than ^11 Christendom united." — 'Ho7i, 'Rufiis King. 




Entered according to Act of Congress, in the-year eighteen hundred and fifty-five, 

lu the Clark's Office oi the District Conrt for the Snuthern District of New-York. 

SCIjanks be to (3oh 
for tlje 

iJenerable IJropagotion Qocict^- 




D. D., D. C. L., OXON, 
bishop of the diocese of western new-tork. 

Rt. Rev. Sir : 

The idea of dedicating this volume to you, a 
natire of Westchester, was almost co-existaht with the resolution to 
enter upon: its compilation ; and surely, to no individual could it "he 
so justly or appropriately inscribed, as to the great grandson of Col. 
Caleb Heathcote, to whom, under God, the Church in Westchester 
County owes a deep_debt of gratitude for her first foundation and 

Trusting that the present work may find some claim to your 

I remain, 

Right Rev. Sir, 

Your- obedient Servant,, 


New Eochelle, May Ut, 1855. 


FBg:e. line. 

20 2 For 1693 read 1683. 

20 4 Omit the following, in 1703, 

and read, probably in 1700. 
20 7 Omit the following, he died 
in 1767, and read, he died 
atMorrisania in 1701. 
23 Note a, for Hawks' Few- 
York, MSS. from arohiyes 
at Mham. &c., read JTew- 
Tork, MSS. from archives 
at Pulham, &c., (Hawks,) 
and also wherever this re- 
ference occurs. 
69 17 After Sherlock read, he was 
licensed by the same prelate 
Eeb. 25th, 1761. 
80 17 After orders, read, he was li- 
censed by the Bishop of Lon- 
don, Dec. 23rd, 1753. 

124 5 After Church-yard insert, 
which is coeval. 

126 23 For 1713, read 1714. 

219 Note a, after vol. insert xi. 

236 4 After in, insert December. 

314 14 For Dr. Hmchman, read 
Richard Terrick, D. D. 

316 35 For to, read do. 

330 Note a, for Legislatue, read 

337 1 After Church, read on the 

351 14 for 1707, read 1704. 

Page. Line. 

379 12 For unclose, read enclose. 

381 15 After Bachelor insert 1811. 

382 26 For Eapalye, read Eapelye. 
395 1 For Bonrepos, read De Bpn- 


402 18 For country, read county. 

409 21 After not insert only. 

416 39 For £1.00, read £3.00. 

416 44 For £3.00, read £1 6. 

486 23 Before constantly, insert I 

475 4 For Eevaud, read Ravaud. 

479 9 After family, insert also of a 
Silver Flaggon, paten and 
two Alms Plates, given as 
an "Easter Offering," in 
1853, by Mrs. Susan Dau- 

488 14 For Bebts, read Bebits. 

489 Note b, for pidgeon read 


491 24 After militia insert, and also, 

after property omit and, 

492 5 After his insert, conduct gain- 

504 20 For missson, read mission. 
508 Note d, for 1165, read 1615, 

and for dawrient, read hau- 

605 32 For 1850, read 1801. 
630 29 For Febuary, read February. 


The principal source from which thd materials for this history 
have been drawn, are 'the voluminous MSS., copied from the Archives 
at Fulham, in the possession of the Rev. F. L. Hawks, D. D. ; 
the printed Abstracts from the Proceedings of the Venerable 
Propagation Society; Humphrey's Historical Account of the 
Incorporated Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, &c. ; 
Hawkin's Missions of the Church of England ; Anderson's History 
of the Colonial Church ; History of the Protestant Episcopal Church 
in America, by the Bishop of Oxford ; Berrian's Historical Sketch of 
Trinity Church, N, Y. ; Collections of the Protestant Episcopal His- 
torical Society; the Probate Records at New-York; the County 
Records, and the Minutes of the Vestries of the various parishes. 
Other sources of information have been diligeiitly and often success- 
fully sought after ; and everything in the Worcester, Philadelphia and 
New- York libraries, calculated to throw light on the subject, has been 
carefully examined. No time nor pains have been spared to render 
the work as accurate as possible. The principal cause which has de- 
layed its publication was an accidental fire, soon after the work, was in 
press, which destroyed much of the MSS. The delay, however, has 
made the work much more full and accurate than it could otherwise 
have. been, and it is hoped that it will not be found .an unacceptable 
contribution to the Ecclesiastical History of our country. 

The author takes this opportunity of returning his grateful acknow- 
ledgments to all those who have in any way assisted towards the com- 
pletion of the present work. He cannot omit expressing his particular 
obligation to the Rev. Francis L. Hawks, D. D., L.L. D., Historio- 
grapher of the Church, for the help which he afforded him in tran- 
scribing the MS. letters of the Missionaries, and for his readiness in 
enabling him to examine the other treasures in his valuable library, 
also to the Rev. A. B. Chapin, D. D. of Soutlf Glastonbury, Ct., for per- 

viii PREFACE. 

mitting him the use of some of those rich stores of his library, without 
which he would have been frequently at a loss to knew how to proceed. 
He is also indebted to the llev. B. Bourns, L.L, D., President of the 
University of Norwich, "V"t., for many extracts from the Matriculation 
books of the various colleges at Oxford and Cambridge, and the 
University of Dublin. His thanks are also due to the Rev. Samuel Sea- 
bury, D. D., N. Y. ; Rev. J. W. GoUison, St. John's College, Cam- 
bridge ; Rev. Francis Martin, Bursar of Trinity College, Cambridge • 
Rev. "Wm. Digby Sadlier, sen.. Lecturer of Trinity College, Dublin • 
Rev. William P. Hutton, Stanley Place, Chester, England ; Rev. 
Micajah Townsend, Clarenceville, Canada East; Rev. Edmund 
Barry, D. D., Jersey City; Rev. Benjamin Dorr, D. D., Phil. 
Rev. F; M. Noll, Setauket, L. I.; Rev. H. T. Wilcoxson, Smith- 
field, Isle of "Wight,, Virginia; Rev. Nathaniel Hyatt, Santee, S. C, 
R,ev. Wm. Payne, Schenectady; Rev. E. Punderson, New Hartford 
Western N. Y. ; Rev. Theodore J). Woolsey, President of Yale CoL 
lege ; Rev. C. Y. De Normandie, Brooklyn, Ct. ; Joseph Rom- 
illy. Trinity Collpge, Cambridge ; Edward P. De Lancey, Esq. 
N. Y.; John C. Jay, Esq., Rye, N. Y.; Samuel Pundersonj 
M. D., New Haven, Ct ; Samuel S. Rogers, N. Y. ; William 
Hawkesworth, Charleston, S. C. ; Micajah Townsend, L. I. ; Charles 
Pinkney, Yarmouth, Nova Scotia; Gouverneur Wilkins, Esq., West- 
chester ; James Hay, Esq., Eastc*hester ; E. B. O'Gallaghan, Albany, 
N. Y. ; Job -Williams, Esq., Pomfret, Ct. ; Messrs. Stanford & Swords| 
Publishers, New- York; and G-arfet Ashton,Esq., of Cambridge, Eng- 
land. The rectors of the various parishes throughout tie County have 
likewise, in reply to his various enquiries, communicated much val- 
uable information. 


In giving a history of the Anglo-American Church in Westchester 
County, it appears proper in an Introduction to give some account of 
the state of religion prior to, and after its organization. This will* 
clearly demonstrate the state of things, which grew up under Non- 
Episqopal Ministrations, and the necessity for introducing the Church 
which has always proved herself a sure bulwark against error. 
; We shall commence, therefore, with "the year 1642, when the first 
siettlement of Westchester was begun by Mr. John Throckmorton, and 
thirty-five associates, who came from New England, with the approba- 
tion of the Dutch authorities of New-York. Fifteen years after, we 
are informed, that the inhabitants of Oostdorp, or Westchester, '-'were 
Puritans or Independents, who had no preacher among them." We 
are also told, that " as early as 1660, Rye paid taxes for the support 
' of religion, although no church was formed or pastor ordained," 

The English laying' claim to New-Netherlands, it was surrendered 
to them by the Dutch, A, D. 1664. B"or the encouragement of settlers, 
Richard NicoUs, the first English Governor, published an instrument 
in which he declared " that in all territories of his Royal Highness, 
liberty of conscience i? allowed, provided such liberty is not converted 
into licentiousness, or the disturbance of others in the exercise of the 
Protestant Religion." The Charter of Privileges granted by the Duke 
of York to the inhabitants of New-York, confirmed "the respective 
Christian Churches, now in practice within the City of New- York, Long 
Island, and the other places of this province, that they shall be held 
and reputed as privileged churches, and enjoy their former lii)erty of 
their religions' in divine worship and. church discipline." 

Immediately after the surrender it, became a matter of indispensable 
and pressing necessity, that laws and ordinances should be passed, 
adapted to the then condition of the Colony, whereupon Governor 


Nicolls, invited Uie inhabitants of Westchester and other towns, upon 
Long Island, to send Delegates to a General Meeting at Hempstead? 
on the 28th of February, 1665. The Convention met a* the 
time appointed, when there appeared for Westchester, Edward Jessup 
and John Qainby. At this meeting was promulgated a body of laws 
and ordinances, for the future Grovernment of the Province, which were 
called, by way of distinction, " The Duke's Laws." • Among the prin- 
cipal provisions of the code are the following: — "Whereas the public 
worship of God is much discredited, for the want of painful and able- 
ministers to instruct the people in the true religion', and for want of 
convenient places capable to receive any assembly of people in a de- 
cent manner, for celebrating Grod's holy ordinances, ordered^ that a 
church shall be built in the most convenient part of each parish, ca- 
pable to receive and acoommodate two hundred persons. To prevent 
scandalous and ignorant pretenders to the ministry, from intruding 
themselves as teachers, no minister shall be admitted to officiate within 
the Government, but such as shall produce testimonials to the Gov- 
ernor ,that he received ordination, either from some Protestant Bishop 
or Ministers within some part of his majesty's dominions, or the do- 
minions of any foreign prince of the reformed religion ; upon which 
testimonials the Governor shall induct the said minister into the par- 
ish that shall make presentation of him." 

The Duke's Laws continued to govern the province until the first 
Provincial Assembly convened by Governor Dongan, in .1683. 

Col. Heathcote writing to the Venerable Society in 1704,' says: — 
" When I first arrived in the Province, (A. D. 1692) I found it (West- 
chester) the most rude and heathenish country I ever saw in my whole 
life, which called themselves christians ; there being not so much as the 
least maAs or footsteps of religion of any sort ; Sundays being the 
only time set apart by them for all manner of vain sports and lewd 
diversions, and they "were grown to such a degree of rudeness that it 
was intolerable, and having then the command of the militia, I sent an 
order to all the Captains requiring them to call their men under arms, 
and to acquaint them that in cUse they would not in every town agree 
among themselves to appoint readers, and pass the Sabbath in the best 
manner they could, till such times as they could be better provided, 
that they should, every Sunday, call their companies under, arms, and 


spend the day in exercise^ whereupon it was unanimously agreed on 
through the country to make choice of readers, which they accordingly 
did, and continued in those methods some time." This description 
given by that worthy person, who proved afterwards highly instrumen- 
tal in settling religion both here and in the neighboring countries, was 
confirmed by many accounts from other hands, a 

In 1692, Col. Benjamin Fletcher arrived with a commission to be 
Governor of the Colony. His very first act was to issue a proclamation 
for the auppression of vice and the observance of 4;he Lord's day. 
This was published throughout "Westchester, and followed on the 15th 
day of December of that year, by an order to the same effect, from the 
County Court of Sessions. Upon this direction to observe the Sab>ath 
and choose readers, Westchester, Eastohester and Yonkers, unjied in 
palling one Warham Mather, styled a studeiit in Divinity. This was 
the same individual described by Miller, in 1695, "asa^oungman 
coming to settle at Westchester without orders." At i]^^ same time. 
Rye also chose one JohnWoodbridge; but from legP'to 1697, th'ey 
were without a minister. Even as late as 1728, Mr. Wetmore, rector of 
Eye, Says : — " the dissenting teachers officiate withpAt qualifying them- 
selves." Such however, was the fearful progress of Sabbath breaking 
and other profanities, that the Court of Sessioh&^r Westchester County 
was again iJompelled to legislate on the sui^ject, as appears from the 
following document : — 

" At a Court of Sessions held at Westohostei^ Juue the 6th and 7th days, 1693, &c. 

Upon- complaint made to the Court, coucerniiig greate disorders and prophainness 
in this County upon the Sabbath days, and for' regulation and prevention of the same, 
the Court orders, that whereas, the publjct w'orshipp of God is much neglected, 
for want of able ministers to instruct the people every Sabbath day, and on such pu- 
blick days of fasting and'thanksgiveing, tliat are appointed or shajl hereafter be ap- 
pointed by His Excellency, the Governor and Council, and General Assembly, 
And whereas, we find that severall places within this County, are not in a capacity 
to mainfaiue a minister, whereby great debaucheries and prophainness, are commit, 
ted on the Lord's days, and that parents' and masters of families doe not traine up 
youths and servants in the feare of God, and observeing His holy commandments, 
although iiis Excelleuoy hath taken speedy care after his arrivall for the suppressing 

Inquiries Into Religious State of the Colonies by David Humphreys, D. D. 1703. 


of vice and encouragement of virtue and observance of the Lord's day, and by his 
proclamation, which hath beene published in this County, yett, very many takes noe 
notice thereof: It's therefore ordered, yett within every Towne precinct and pattent 
within this County, due observance of the Lord's day shall be kept, and for want of 
au able minister the inhabitants shall employ a reader to read out of good books, two 
Sermonds every Lord's day, (that is to say,) one in the forenoone, betweene 9 and 
11 o'clock, and one in the afternoone, betweeue 2 and 4 o'clock, at such places as 
shall be thought meet and convenient by ye inhabitants of such Towne precinct 
and pattent, att a meeting ordered by the next Justice of the Peace ; provided that 
if the inhabitants will not appoynt such place as aforesaid, that then the next Jus- 
tice of the Peace shall appoynt a place, and in case any person or persons shall make 
derission, or make any unseemly behaviour in the time of publick worshipp, that 
then the said Justice of the Peace of said place or precincts, shall committ all such 
deiiders -to the stocks one honre, otherwise shall pay tenn shillings, to be levyed by 
the constable, the one half to ye coust,able, and the other half to be employed to- 
wards Telief of the poor of said place. 

lilt's alsoe ordered that noe person shall sitt tippleing in a publick ordenary on the 
Lord's day, upon penalty as aforesaid, or at other times on penalty as the law di- 
rects, and th^t any persons inhabiting "within this County shall not travill on ihe 
Lord's day, without perraition and make known their ocation to the next Justice of 
the Peace, upon psnalty as aforesaid, Iffcewise noe person or persons shall presume to 
goe a fishing, shootljg or hunting of horses, or any other sports which makes breach 
of the. Sabbath, upon j<a penalty as aforesaid, provided, that this order shall not prohi- 
bit any stranger of meat and drinke for his refreshment on the Sabbath day. 

Also any Justice of the Peace which shall neglect or refuse to grant his warrant 
to the constable, for layiiig soch fiaea upon the breakers of the Sabbath, shall forfeit 
twenty shillings for every such iiegleev as aforesaid, and that the. constable of every 
respective towne that shall publish this order in his respective place, precinct or pat- 
tent, and inspect and give notice of all Sabbath breakers to the next Justice of the 
Peace, on penalty as aforesaid, for every siich his neglect."" 

The lamentable state of religion in the year 1695, is thus described 
by the Rey. John Miller, chaplain to his Majesty's forces in the pro- 
vince of New- York : — " A great inconveniency, this province suffers 
under, is in relation to a ministry ; now in New- York, there are 
either — 

" 1st. No ministers at all, that is, of the settled and established reli- 
gion of the nation, and of such there is not oftentimes one in the whole 
province, nor at any time except the chaplain to his majesty^ forces in 

" Records of Court of Sessions for Westchester County. 


New-York, that does discharge, or pretend to discharge the duty of a 
minister, and, he being but one, cannot do it every where. 

" 2nd. Or secondly, if there be any ministers, they are such as only call 
themselves so, and are but pretended ministers ; many of them have no 
orders at all, but set up for themselves of their own head and authority ; 
or, if they have orders, are Presbyterians, Independents, &e. All 
these have no other encouragement for the pains they pretend to take 
than the voluntary contributions of the people, or, at best, a salary by 
agreement and subscription, which yet they shall not enjoy, except they 
take more care to please the humors, and delight the fancies of their 
hearers, than to preach up true religion and a christian life, &c."a 

From what has been said, it is apparent_that a perfect toleration for 
all- religious opinions had been guaranteed from the first settlement of 
the province. But liberty was converted into licentiousness, for men 
pretending to be ministers of the Gospel, officiated without qualifying 
themselves according to the Act of Toleration, under a notion that the 
laws of England relating to religion, did not extend to the plantations. 
What wonder then, that vice of every kind prevailed in spite of Gov- 
ernor's proclamations, military orders and judicial acts. It is very ap- 
parent too, that up to this period, but little good had been effected by 
Non-Episcopal ministrations, for Col. Heathcote, writing to the Secre- 
tary of the Venerable Society, in 1705, says: — " I dare aver that 
there is not a much greater necessity of having the Christian Eeligion 
in its true light preached any where than amongst them. Many, if 
not the greatest number of them, being a little better than in a state of 
heathenism ; having never been baptised nor admitted to the commu- 

Such was the state of things, which, grew up under 
supervison, for, until 1693, there seems to have been " no face of the 
Church o:^ England" in the colony. In fact, before Col. Fletcher 
was Governor of the province, there was no provision made for the 
maintenance or support of a minister of the Church of England, nor 
church erected in any part of the province for the members thereof, to 

' A Description of the Province and City of New- York, A. D., 169,5, by the Rev. 
John Miller, Loadon, 1743. 


worship God in.* Soon after his arrival however, he proposed the 
Settling of an able ministry as one of the best and surest means of sup- 
pressing vice and profanity. The majority of the Assembly were en- 
tirely disinclined to the scheme, which occasioned a warm rebuke from 
the Governor in his speech at the close of the Session, in these words : — 
'.' Gentlemen, the first thing that I did recommejid to you, at our last 
' meeting, was to provide for a ministry, and nothing is done in it. 
There are none of you, but that are big with the privileges of Eh- 
glishmen and Magna Charta, which is your right ; and the same 
law doth provide for the Religion of the Church of England, against 
Sabbath breaking and other profanity. Biit as you hate made it last, 
and postponed it in this Session, I hope you will begin it the next meet- 
ing and do somewhat towards it effectually."'' 

The determination of the Governor at length induced the House 
to yield ; and a bill was " bro^ight in for settling the ministry, and 
raising a maintenance for them." Col. Lewis Morris, in a letter to the 
Secretary of the Venerable Propagation Society, dated New-York, 20th 
February, 1711, says: "James Graham, Esq., who was then spea^;er of 
the Assembly, and had the drawing of their bills, prescribed a method 
of induction and so managed it that it would not do well for the Dis- 
senters, and but lamely for the Church, though it would do with the 
help of the Governor and that was all ; but it was the most that 
could be got at that time, for had more been attempted, the Assembly 
had Seen through the artifice, the most of them being Dissentefs, and 
all had been lost."" 

' n New York, MSS, from archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 42. (Hawks.) 

' For this commendable zeal Col. .Fletcher has been reviled, by Smith and others- 
as a bigot to the Episcopal form of Church Government. 
■ » Doc. His. N. Y. vol. iii p. 344. 


This bill was entitled 





Passed the 2ith of March, 1693. 
" Pkeamble. — Whereas, Profaiieness and Licentiousness hath of late overspread 
this Province, for want of a settled ministry throughout the same : To the end that 
the same may be removed, and the ordinances of God duly administered. 

I. Be it enacted by the Governor, and Council, and Representatives, convened 
in General Assembly, and by the authority of the same, that in each of the re- 
spective Cities and Counties hereafter mentioned and expressed, there shall be 
called, inducted, and established, a good sufficient Protestant Minister, to officiate, and 
have the care of souls, within one year next, and after the publication hereof, That 
is to say ; In the City of New-York, one ; County of Richmond, one ; jn the County 
of Westchester, two ; pne to have the care of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and 
the manor of Pelham ; the other to have the care of Rye, Mamaronock, and Bed- 
ford. In Q,ueens Countyi two; one to have the care of Jamaica, and the adjacent 
Towns and Farms ; the other to have the care of Hempstead, and the next adja- 
cent Towns and Farms. 

II. > And for their respective encouragement. Be it further enacted by the au- 
thority aforesaid ; That there shall be annually, and once in every year, in every ot 
the respective Cities and Counties aforesaid, assessed, levied,, collected, and paid for the 
maintenance of each of their respective Ministers, the respective sums hereafter men- 
tioned, thatisto say ; For the City and County of^New-York, One Hundred Pounds ; 
for the two precincts of Westchester, One Hundred Pounds, to each ; Fifty Pounds 
to be paid in Country Produce at money price ; for the County of Richmond, Foity 
Pounds, in Country Produce, at money price ; and for the two precincts of Queens 
County, One Hundred andTwenty Pounds, to each Sixty Pounds, in Country Pro- 
duce, at money price., 

III. And for the more orderly raising the respective maintenances for the Ministers 
aforesaid, be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, that the respective justi- 
ces of every City and County aforesaid, or any two of them, shall every i ear issue 
out their warrants to the Constables,, to summons the freeholders of every City, 
County, and precinct aforesaid, together, on' the second Tuesday of Januaiy, for the 
chusing of Ten Vestrymen and Two Chutchwardens ; and the said Justices and 
Vestrymen, or Major part of them, are hereby empowered, within ten days after the 
said day, or any day after, as to them shall seem convenient, to lay a reasonble tax 
on the said respective Cities, Counties, Parish or Precincts, for the maintenance of the 
Minister and Poor of their respective places ; and if they shall neglect to issue their 
warrants, so as the election ^e not made that day, they shall respectively forfeit Five 
Pounds, current money of thi,s Province ; and in case the said Freeholders duly 


suramoued, as aforesaid, shall not appear, or appearing, do not chuse the said ten 
Vestrymen and two Churohwirdens, that then in their default, the said. Justices shall, 
within ten days after the said second Tuesday, or on any day after, as to them shall 
seerri coiivenient, lay the said reasonable tax on the said respective places, for the 
respective maintainances aforesaid : and if the said Justices and Vestrymen shall ne- 
glect their dilty herein, they shall respectively forfeit five pounds current money 

IV. Penalty for not ofTering to lay the tax, five pounds. Tax Roll to be delivered to 
the Constable to levy the taxes. Penalty for refusing to pay. 

V. Ministers to be paid quarterly. 

VI. Always provided, and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that 
all and every of the respective Ministers, that shall be settled in the respective Ci- 
ties, Counties, and Precincts aforesaid, shall be called to officiate in their respective 
Precints by the respective Vestrymen and Churchwardens aforesaid. And always 
provided, that all former agreements made with Ministers throughout this Province, 
shall continue and remain in their full force and virtue; any thing contained herein 
to the contrary hereof in anywise notwithstandmg."* , 

Under this act the ministry by Law established^ became entitled to 
the public encouragements, leaving the Dissenters at, liberty to main- 
tain a minister of their own persuasion, but obliging them to pay the 
established clergyman. In consequence, all lands set aside at pitblic 
town meetings, (which almost invariably consisted of persons holding 
a great diversity of opinions, in matters of religion,) for the provision 
of ministers, all orderly glebes voted for th«ir habitation and mainten- 
ance, and all meeting houses raised by public tax and distress on the 
people, became vested in the ministry established by law. 

The Dissenters, however, contended that the act of 1693 was to raise 
a maintenance for a Dissenting Minister, and wherever they possessed 
the power, chose churchwardens and vestrymen of their own persuasion. 
Yet these men who were Dissenters, chosen by Dissenters, (sworn into 
ofiGice, to support the Church of England as established by law, and ac- 
tually reoejved the Holy Communion at the hands of her ministers,) 
would, when the opportunity offered, refuse to call a minister of the Es- 
tablished Church, as the Act of Assembly directed, and on that pre- 
tence withhold his salary. 

Col. Morris, in the letter already alluded to, says ; — " I happened to 

a Laws of New- York, from 1691 to 1773, inclusive, vol. i. p. 19, 4th Assembly, 
First Sessions, 6th William and Mary, A. D. 1693. . 


be in the Governor's chamber, when his Judge and a Dissenting Minister 
came in and this matter (the late Act of Assembly,) was talked of, the 
latter said (i. e. the Dissenting Minister) that the intention of the Legis- 
lature at that time was to raise a maintenano.e for a Dissenting Minister, 
all the Assembly but one being Dissenters and knowing nothing of the 
Church, and that being the intention of the law makers was the meaning 
of the law, and he hoped the Dissenters might enjoy what was so justly 
th^r due, or at least not to be deprived of it without due course of law 
as they formerly had been. I told him the Legislature did not consist 
of the Assembly only, but of the Governor and Council, joined with 
them, whose intentions might be quite otherwise, and I believed it was 
most certain the Governor at that time never intended to settle a Dis- 
senting Clergy, that the meaning of th§ Legislature was the meaning of 
the whole Legislature, and not of any part, and was most likely to be 
found out by the words of the act which most plainly appeared in favor 
of the Church of England^ The Governor joined in the ^rgumentj 
and argued with a great deal of force in favor of the Church."* In the ' 
spring of 1695, the Assembly declared in explanation of the Act of 
1693: — That the vestrymen and churchwardens have power to call a 
Dissenting Protestant Minister, and that he is to be paid and main- 
tained as the Act directs ; but the Grovernor rejected this interpreta- 
tion of the Assembly and decided that the Act applied soldy to the 
Episcopal Ministry y> y 

The Act, however, of 1693, did not take effect, till a,bout the year 
1702, nor was the provision made thereby, a sufficient maintenance for 
the, ministers in country towns, so that without the help of the Venerable 
Propagation Society, a minister could not have been supported. 

In 1702, the Venerable Society for the Propagation of the Gospel^ 
commenced its labors here. Of that noble and useful Institution, the 
oldest Missionary Society in the Protestant world ; — since our country 
was so largely indebted to its kind offices for the ministrations of the 

a Doe. Hist, of Newf York, Vol. Hi, p. 245. 

I The Aot of 1693, was confirmed on ths llthof May, 1697, and again on the 4th 
of August, 1 705. ■ The latter was again ratified by Qneen Anne, on the 1 1th of April, 
1700. Laws of N. Y. from 1691 to 1773, inclusive, vol. i. pi 64. Ed. by Hugh Gaiiie.. 



Gospel, it may be well to give a short account. " The Act of Incorpora- 
tion was procured by Dr. Bray, and several others who felt a deep in- 
terest in the religious welfare of the colonies, through the agency of 
Archbishop Tenison, and Bishop Compton, from William the Third, it 
bears date June 16, 1701. "a 

Upon enquiry made into the state of the colonies, at this titne, 
they received from thence a more melancholy account than their fears 
could suggest : several relations setting forth, that the very Inijian 
darkness was not more gloomy and horrid, than that in which some of 
the English inhabitants of the colonies lived. In 1702, Mr. Keith, 
reported to the Society " that in Long Island there are not many Qua- 
kers ; it is a great place, and has many inhabitants, English and Dutch, 
the Dutch are Calvanista and have some Calvanistical Congregations ; 
the English, some of them Independents, but many of them no religion, 
but like wild Indians ; there is no Church of England in all of Long 
Island, nor in all that great Continent of New- York province, except 
at New- York Town." 

No sooner, it seems, were tidings received here that the Society for 
the Propagation of the Gospel had been chartered, than the country 
towns of this Province, applied for assistance ; and we are told that the 
inhabitants of Westchester in particular, were very pressing for a minis- 
ter : that earnest memorials were sent from the inhabitants of JNew 
Rochelk, from those of Jamaica and Hempstead, towns on Long Island ; 
from Staten Island, and from Rye : that their desires were complied 
with, and missionaries sent those places. 

In 1704, Mr. Bartow, and other missionaries inforinedthe Venerable 
Society, " that the Church of England under the administration of tho 
late Lord Bellomont, and Capt. Nanfan^ hath been grievously apposed 
and oppressed ; but since the auspicious arrival of the Right Honorable 
the Lord Cornbury, has been delivered from the .violence of her ene- 
mies, restored to her rights, greatly countenanced and encouraged, and 
lives under the just expectation of being more firmly established and 
enlarged. But many of the Dutch Dissenters, and all of the Quakers, 
though differing from one another amongst themselves, yet agree in op- 

" Rev. M. H. Henderson's Centennial Discourse. 


posing with great zeal and malice, whatever tends to the honor and in 
terests of the Church." 

The following extracts formed a part of Lord Cornbury's instructions 
which were dated December 5th, 1702 : — 

" 60. You shalJ take especial care that God Almighty be devoutly and duly 
served throughout yoxir Goveniment ;• the Book of Commou Prayer, as by law es- 
tablished, read each Sunday and Hojyday, and the Blessed Sacrament administered 
according to the jltes of the " Church of England. You shall be , careful that the 
churches a,Iready built there be well and orderly kept, and that more be. built, as the 
Colony shall by Gtod's blessing be improved ; and that, besides a. competent mainte" 
nance tobe assigned to the minister of each orthodox church, a convenient house be 
bui)t at the common charge for each minister, and a competent proportion of land as- 
signed him for a glebe and' exerfiise of his iuduslry. And you ar? to ta^te care that 
the Parishes be so limited and settled, as you shall fijid most coaveuient for the ac- 
complishing this good work." 

''61. You are not to prefer, any Minister to any Ecclesiastical BoneSce iu that 
our Province, Without a certificate froiri the Right Reverend F ither iu God', tha Bi- 
shop of London, of his being comformabl'e to the doctrine and discipline of the"* 
Clmroh of England, and of a good- life and conversation. And if a.ny person preferred 
already to a Benefice shall appear to you to give scandal, either by his doctrine or 
manners, you are to use the best means for tbe removal of him, and to supply the va-_ 
caucy iu such manner as we have directed:" 

"62. You are to^ive order forthwith (if the'samebe ni3t already done,) that 
every Orthodox Minister ^ithin your Government be. oue of the Vestry in his respec- 
tive parish, and that no Vestry be held without him, except in case of sickness, or 
that, after notice of a Vestry summoned, he omit to come." 

'' 63. Ybu are to enquire whether there be any J^^inister witliin^your Government, 
who preaches and administers the Sacrament in any Orthodox Church or Chapel 
without being in due orders, and to give an aeooUnt thereof to the said' Bishop of 
London." " • ' 

" So well for the most part," says Mr. Hawiins, " do the missionaries 
seem to have been selected, that Lord Cornbury, G-overnor of New- 
York, and a just upholder of the Church, within his jurisdiction, said, 
in a letter dated November 22nd, 1705 :— 'For *hose places where 
ministers are settled, as New-York, Jamaica, Hempstead, Westchester, 
and Rye, I must do the gentlemen who a^e settled there the justice to 
say, that they have behaved themselves with great zeal, exemplary 
piety, and unwearied diligence in discharge of their duty, in their several 
parishes.' " In like manner, Ool. Heatheote, writing to the Secretary 
of the Society from New-Yorlj, on the 9th of November, 1705, says,.— 


" I must do all the geatlemen that justice, whom you have sent to the 
province, as to declare that a better clergy were never in any place, 
there being not one amongst them that has the least stain or blfemish 
as to his life or conversation."* 

Another has well observed :— " I believe the Christian Church co\jld 
never boast of better men, take them as a body, than the Society's Mis- 
sionaries to this country, They chpse their profession from a pure 
love to religion and the cause of Christ, not from the love of money or 
the praise of men. They sought for no honor, but that which cometh 
alone from God, and an approving conscience. Like their beloved 
Master, they were despised arid rejected, and their religion was every 
where spoken against and vilified. As the Apostles were a spectacle 
to men and angels, so were these' men, and if they suffered not as mar- 
tyrs, it was because the civil authority protected them." 

In regard to our early missionaries, says another : — "The annals on 
earth of these devoted men are few and obscure, for they were workers, 
not talkers in their Lord's vineyard. Their record is in Heaven. Yet 
even in the little that does remain, we read a narrative noi easily paral- 
leled, in at least two noble features of the Church's Missionary. First, 
in their patient, unflinching endurance; the enthusiasm, not of sen- 
timent, but of duty ; taking hold on their mission, as men do on the 
daily work of life, heartily ; and this was the more to their honor, as 
they had little oversight, save God and their own consciences ; and 
secondly, their unTjending maintenance of the Church's teachings in 
her faith, ministry, sacraments and catechism. This, again, has some- 
thing in it of the heroic strain, for they were surrounded and pressed by 
every temptation life could bring to the concealment or modification 
of unpopular doctrine. But although feeble, they were fearless men j 
their only outpry was for a Bishop ' to visit all the churches,' they 
said, ' to ordain som^ confirm otters, and bless all.' Their only quar- 
rel was, that he came not, , ' we have cried,' to use their own bitter 
words in writing home, ' till our hearts ache, and ye own 'tis the call 

» Hawkins' Not. of the Miss, of the Church of England, in the North Amer. 
Col. London, 1845. 


and cause of God, and yet ye liave not heard, or have not answered, and 
that's all one.' »»■ ' , , 

In this call for" a Bishop the laity co-operated with the clergy^ for 
Colonel Morris writing to the Society, concerning the state of the 
Chtirch in New York and the Jerseys, about the endjof the year 1707, 
says : — " The want of a Bishop, and the exhorbitant power of the seve- 
ral Governors of the Plantations are great hindrances to the propa- 
gation of the Gospel."b 

Colonel Heathoote too, in a letter to the Secretary, from New York; 
Sept. 18th, 1713, says: — " Wfe have, a report (but it wants confirmar 
tion) of a Bishop being appointed for these parts, and that we may very 
shortly expect him. I most heartly virish it might be true, nothing be- 
ing more wanted or can be of greater service to the Church." 

The call, however, for a Bishop was not unheard by the Society, but 
by the worldly policy, as blind as it was unchristian, of the State and 
Statesmen who overruled it, and who left it, for more than a hundred 
yearSj unaided and unsupported to individual exertion. , 

The enemies of the . Church at this time, to ' arrest her progress 
and prevent a Bishop's being sent, commenced a furious attac"k upon 
her worship and discipline. 

" When the Episcopal controversy commenced," says the Rev. A. B. 
Chapin D. D., '■ the Congregationalists of New England called them- 
selves Presbyterians, and insisted that the Presbyterian form of the 
ministry was an original divine institution of perpetual and binding ob- 
ligation, and from which it was schism to seperate. Tlie first publica- 
tion in this country, which called the fact in question, so far as we 
know, was by a layman ofBoston, (1723) for which he was indicted as 
a libel on the government. Prom this time the Episcopal controversy 
was carried on with great vigor for nearly twenty years ( 1723 to 1739) 
by Dickinson, Foxcropt, Graham and Wigglesworth on the Presby- 
terian side, and by Johnson and Beach on the Episcopal side; and 
the evidence to be derived from Scripture, Antiquity and the Eeforma- 
tion was pretty thoroughly scanned. The doctrine of Apostolical suc- 

' The Jubilee of 1851 in New York, p. 17-18. 

' H"6w York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, tol. i. p. 106. (Hawks.)- 


cession, as a matter of fact, however, was not debated, as both parties 
held it, one deriving it through the line of Bishops, the other, through 
that of Presbyters. 

The effect of these discussions not arresting, as was hoped, the pro- 
gress of the Church,- but evidently accelerating it, the assailants left 
the worship and discipline, and turned to the aoctrines of the Church. 
A ten years controversy (1 TSQ to 1749) followed, touching election, pre; 
destination, universal redemption, baptismal regeneration, and other 
kindred doctrines, of which Dickinson was the principal champion of 
the calvanistic opinions, and to which were oppoteed Johnson, Beach 
and WETMofeE. ^ This disowssion, like tlie precgedingj adding numbers 
and strength to Episcopacy, was abandoned, and the old ground of the 
divine right of Presby terianism re-asserted. During the next tw,enty years 
(1749 to 1768) the constitution, worship and discipline of the Church, 
were very thoroughly examined by Hobart, Chauncey andWELts oh 
the Presbyterian sid« ; arid JohHson, Beach, Wetmore, Caner and 
/Leaming on the Episcopal side. A collateral discussion was also car. 
ried on, touchi'ng the right of the Society for Propagating the Gospel 
in Foreign Parts to send Episcopal missionaries into places where there 
were Presbyterian ministers, by Hobart and Mathew against John 
SON and Apthoe'p. ' . 

Evety one of these discussions increased the numbers, and strength- 
ened the hands of the Episcopal Church ;. until there was some pros- 
pect of obtaining what they had long desired, a Bishop to reside among 

Such was the state of affairs when the Revolutionary war broke out, 
and it was strongly suspected by many of the clergy that the eastern 
Provinces were not only aiming at independence, but at the subversion 
of the Church likewise, The indignities and cruelties which the poor, 
missionaries suffered are thus detailed by Mr. Inglis, in a letter to the 
Secretary, dated October 1st, 1776 : — "The clergy amidst this scene of 
tumult and disorder went on steadily with their duty ; in their sermons 
confining themselves to the doctrines of the GrospeL without touching on 
politics ; nsing their influence to allay our heats, and cherish a spirit of 
loyalty among the people. This conduct, however harmless, gave great 
offence to our flaming patriots, who laid it down as a maxim, < that those 
who were not for them were against them,' The blergy were everywhere 


threatened ; often reviled with the most opprohious language ; some- 
times threatened, with brutal violence— ^some have been carried prison- 
ers by armed mobs into distant Provinces, where thfey were detained in 
close confinement for several weeks, and much insulted, without any 
crime being ever alledged against Ihem ; some have been flung into jails 
by comniittees foi: frivolous suspicions of plots, of which even their per- 
secutors afterwards acquitted them ; some who were obliged to fly their 
own Provinces to save their lives, have been taken prisoners, sent back 
and are threatened to be tried for their lives because they fled from 
danger ;■ some haye' been pulled out of the reading desk because they 
prayed for the King, and that- before Independency was declared; 
others have been warned to appear at militia musters with their arms, 
have been fitted for not appearing, and threatened with imprisonment 
for not paying their fines ; others have had their houses plundered, and 
their desks broken open, under pretence of their containing treasonable 
papers; ' I could fill a volume with such instances, and you njay rely on 
the facts I have mentioned as indubitable,-for I can name the personlJisH 
and have these particulars attested in the amplest manner. Were 
every instance of this kind faithfully collected, it is probable that the 
sufferings of the American clergy would appear in many respects not 
inferior to those of the English clergy, in the great Kebellion of the last 
century'; and such a work would be no bad supplement to Walker's 
sufferings of the clergy."* . 

»New York, MSS. from archires at Fulham, vol ii, 581. (Hawks.) 




This parish formerly included the four precincts of West- 
chester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the Manor of Pelham, and 
was originally embraced in the Indian territory of " Weckquas- 
keck," which, on the 19th of April, 1640, was purchased from 
the native iSachems, by the Dutch West India Company.* 

In the year 1642, the first settlement of Westchester was com- 
menced by a Mr. John Throckmorton,'' and thirty-five associates, 
who came from New England, with the approbation of the 
Dutch authorities. " It was in 1642 (says the historian of the 
New Netherlands) that Mr. Throckmorton, with a number of 
his friends, who had already been driven with Roger Williams 
from Massachusetts by the fiery Hugh Peters, procured permis- 

« Broadhead's History of the State of New York, First Period, 1609, 1664, p. 

k John Throckmorton emigrated from England to Nantaskett, Mass., 5th Feb., 
1631, from whence he removed to &alem, and afterwards became an associate of 
Roger Williams in the settlement of Providence. R. I. 


sion to settle thirty-five families, some twelve miles east of the 
Manhattans, at a place called Westchester, but which the Dutch 
at this time named Yredeland, or Land of Peace, a meet ap- 
pellation for the spot selected as a place of refuge by those who 
were bruised and broken down by religious persecution. "^^ In 
his petition to the Dutch authorities on the 2nd of October, 
1642, Mr. Throckmorton solicits permission to settle down with- 
in the limits of the New Netherlands, "There to reside in 
peace, and enjoy the same privileges as Dutch subjects, and to 
be favored with the free exercise of religion." But even here 
the persecuted Puritan was destined to find, like the dove of 
Noah's ark, no place on which to rest the sole of his foot, for it 
seems that several members of his family fell in the Indian 
massacre, which took place on the 6th of October, 1643. 

The next settlement in Tredeland, was begun upon or near 
the site of the present village of Westchester, in 1654, by a 
number of Puritans from Connecticut, who gave it the name it 
now bears, but the Dutch called it Oost-dorp, (East Town,) 
from its position east of the Manhattans. 

At this early period, public worship appears to have been reg- 
ularly established according to the Independent or Congrega- 
tional order. The Rev. John Megapolensis, in a letter to the 
Classis of Amsterdam, dated New Netherland, 5th of August, 
1657, says : — " On the west side of the East river, about one 
mile through Hell-gate, (as we call it,) opposite Flushing, on the 
main, another English village has been begun over two years. 
It was named Oost-dorp. The inhabitants of this place are 
also Puritans, alias Independents. They also have no preacher. 
They hold Sunday meetings, reading from an English book a 
sermon, and making a prayer."'' 

Of their mode of worship, the Dutch Commissioners, who 
visited Oost-dorp in 1656, give in the journal of their expedition, 
the following account : "31 Dec. After dinner, Cornelius Van 
Ruyven went to the house where they held their Sunday meet- 
ing, to see their mode of worship, as they had, as yet, no preach- 

• O'Callaghan's Hist, of the New Netherlands, vol. i. 258. 
•> Doe. Hist, of N. Y. vol. iii. 107. 



er. There I found a gathering of about fifteen men, and ten 
or twelve women. Mr. Baly said the prayer, after which one 
Robert Bassett read from a printed book a sermon, composed by 
an English clergyman in England. After the reading, Mr. Baly 
gave out another prayer and sang a psalm, and they all sepa- 

As " all ecclesiastical business, at this time, was conducted by 
the town, assembled in town meeting, and as a meeting of the 
town, was a meeting of the congregation, which, after having 
disposed of matters secular, could attend to the business of the 
church ;" therefore the early Iiistory of religion is to be found 
principally in the town records. 

Under date of July 29th, 1674, twenty years after the settle- 
ment of the town, appears the name of the Rev. Ezekiel Fogge ; 
probably the first independent minister that officiated here. 

The following entries are taken from the town books : — " On 
the 11th of February, 1680, there was sprinkled with water, 
by Morgan Jones, (what they call baptizing) William Hunt, son 
of John Hunt, of Westchester ; witnesses present, Joseph Hunt 
and Bridget Waters." 

" Westchester, Oct. 7th, 1680. — Morgan Joanes married Isaac 
Dickerman, of this towne, to Bethia, the daughter of Henry 

Recorded per me, 

Francis French, Clerk." 

At a town meeting, held in Westchester, April 2nd, 1684 : — 
It was resolved, " that the Justices and Vestrymen of Westches- 
er, Eastchester, and Yonckers, do accept of Mr. Warham 
Mather, as our minister, for one whole year, and that he shall 
have sixty pound, in country produce, at money price, for his 

» O'Callaghan's Hist, of N. Neth. vol. ii. 316. 


salary, and that he shal], be paid every quarter. Done in be 

half of the Justices aforesaid. Signed by us." 

* John Q,uimby, 
Joseph Hunt, 
John Bayley, 
John Burkbee.* 

At a lawful town meeting held in Westchester, by the free- 
holders and inhabitants, and residents of said place, the 2nd day 
of January, 1692, in order to consult, conclude, and agree, about 
procuring an orthodox minister in said town ; It is voted and 
agreed upon, " that there shall be an orthodox minister in the 
town aforesaid, as soon as possible may be, and to allow him 
forty or fifty pound per annum, equivalent to money, for his 
maintenance. It is also voted and agreed upon, that a man 
shall go to the Honorable Colonel Heathcote, and see if he can 
prevail with him for to procure us a minister, in his travels in 
New England, otherwise, that Captain William Barnes shall go 
and procure us a minister."'' 

Upon the 21st of Sept. 1693, the Act of Assembly for settling 
a Ministry, was passed. By this Act, Westchester County was 
divided into two parishes, viz, Westchester and Rye. The pa- 
rish of' Westchester included the towns or precincts of West- 
chester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the Manor of Pelham, and 
was required to raise £50 per annum for the support of the min- 
ister, and to elect on the 2nd Tuesday in January, ten vestry- 
men and two churchwardens. There was also to be called, in- 
ducted, and established, a good sufficient Protestant minister, 
to officiate and have the care of souls within one year next, and 

'Westchester records, commencing A. D., 1665, p. 42. On the 29th of May, 
1697, John Yeats of the city of N. Y., sold several tracts of land in Westchester, 
to Warham Mather, of Northampton, in the county of Hampshire, in his Maj. 
Prov. of Mass. Bay in America, (Student in Divinity,) now residing in the town o^ 
Westchester, &c. Westchester Town Rec. Lib. v. 78. In 1703, Warham 
Mather, of New Haven, Student in Divinity, sold his lands in Westchester to 
Daniel Clark, Lib. vi. 30. 

b Town Rec. 


after the publication hereof. In Westchester two, one to have 
the care of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the Manor 
of Pelham, &c."a 

But so few persons were properly qualified at this time, to ac- 
cept the call of the vestry, that the act rernaiued dormant in 
Westchester nearly two years.. An attempt, however, was made 
by some of the vestry to have Mr. Warham Mather inducted, as 
appears by the following extract from the town records : — 

" At a meeting held in Westchester, the seventh of May, 1695, 
Present, Justice Barnes and Justice' Hunt, Oapt. William Barnes 
President of the trustees : — 

" Whereas, the freeholders and inhabitants of this town of 
Westchester and precincts, att this meeting have exprest their 
desires for the settling of Mr. Warham Mather amongst us as 
, our minister for one whole year or longer ; — its therefore voated 
and agreed upon, that Mr. Justice Barnes and Mr. Justice Hunt 
and Mr. Edward Waters, churchwarden, with as many of the 
vestrymen as conveniently can be gott together, should agree 
with the said Mr. Warham Mather, and settle him with all ex- 

Entered — Edward Collier, Clerk."'' 

Colonel Caleb Heathcote, a member of the Venerable Propa- 
gation Society, writing to the secretary thereof, in 1704, alludes 
to this agreement with Mather.o " It was unanimously agreed 
on through the county, to make choice of readers, which they 
accordingly did, and continued in those methods some time 
after which the people of Westchester, Eastchester, and a place 
called the Lower Yonckers, agreed with one Warren Mather." 
'' After he (Mather) had been with them for some time, West- 
chester parish made choice of me for one of their churchwardens, 
in hopes of using my interest with Col. Fletcher to have Mather 

• Acts of Prov. Assembly, N. Y. from 1691 to 1725. 
t Westchester Town Rec. Lib. vi. 56. 

II Warham Mather was the son of Eleazer, and grandson of Richard Mather, 
who was born at Louton, in Lancashire, A. D. 1596. See Mather's Magnalia. 


inducted to that living. I told them it was altogether impossible 
for me to comply with their desire, it being wholly repugnant to 
the laws of England to compel the subject to pay for the main- 
tenance of any minister who was not of the national church, and 
that it lay not in any Governor's power to help them, but since 
they were so zealous for having religion and good order settled 
amongst them, I would propose a medium in that matter, which 
was, that there being at Boston a French Protestant minister, one 
Mr. Bondet; a very good man, who was in orders by my Lord 
of London, and could preach both in English and French, and 
the people of New Rochelle being destitute of a minister, we 
would call Mr. Bondet to the living, and the parish being large 
enough to maintain two, we would likewise continue Mr. Mather 
and support him by subscriptions. The vestry seemed to be ex- 
tremely well pleased with this proposal, and desired me to send 
for Mr. Bondet, which I immediately did, hoping by that means 
to bring them over to the church, but Mather apprehending 
what I aimed at, persuaded the vestry to alter their resolutions, 
and when he came they refused to call him." Colonel Heath- 
cote now finding that it was impossible to settle the church at 
Westchester, so long as Mather remained, determined in the 
next place to devise ways to get him out of the county, which 
he was not long in eifecting.^- The Rev. John Miller, descri- 
bing the Province of New York, in 1695, says: — -"There is a 
meeting house at Westchester, and a young man coming to settle 
there, without orders. There are 200 or 300 English and Dis- 
senters ; few Dutch."!" 

The old meeting house having fallen to decay, the following 
resolution was passed at a town meeting, held the 5th day of 
May, 1696: — " It is voated and agreed upon that the meeting 
house shall be repaired forthwith, and that two men shall be 
chosen to see it done — Gabriel Legat, Josiah Hunt, is chosen to 
agree with a carpenter to repair the said meeting house, and to 
bring an account to the town of the cost and expence thereof 

» Such was the law at this period that if any unqualified person was presented 
to a living, he that presented him could not afterwards present another, on the 
ground that no person that has the presentation to a benefice can do it twice. 

•i Description of the Pro v. and City of N. Y. by Rev. John Miller. 


whereby a rate may be made to defraye the charge in so do- 

On the 3rd day of May, 1697, at a meeting of the freeholders 
and inhabitants of the town and precincts of Westchester : — " It 
was voted and agreed upon, that there should be a Town House 
built, to keep courts in, and for the publick worship of God."^ 

Soon after this vote of the town, in the year 1699, an act of 
General Assembly was made to enable the respective towns with- 
in the whole province to build and repair their meeting houses, 
(fee." Whereupon the inhabitants of Westchester laid aside the 
prosecution of building the town house above, according to the 
said town vote, and took hold of the said act, by virtue whereof 
a new Parish Church was erected in 1700, and a rate laid and 
levied on all the inhabitants, without any distinction, towards 
defraying the expences. 

The following resolutions were passed at a meeting of the 
trustees, held ou the 8th of June, 1700 : — 

" It is voted and agreed upon by the trustees aforesaid, that the rate shall be 
made up forthwith, and delivered to the constable, who shall have for collecting 
the same, six pence per pound : — 

" Whereas att a general meeting held in the Borough town of Westchester, by 
the freeholders and inhabitants of said town and precincts, on the 3rd day of May, 
1697, it was voted and agreed upon that there should be a town hall built to keep 
courts in, and for the publick worship of God, &c., but it being then neglected, 
the Mayor and Aldermen, and Trustees at this meeting, did order with a joynt 
consent, to build a house for the uses aforesaid, and a prison. The dimensions 
of the house is to be twenty-six feet square, 16 feet joynts, a square roof, 6 win- 
dow cases 5 feet square, &c. The trustees agreed with Richard Ward to build 
said house for ^33, and with Erasmus Orton to build the prison for £5, which 
work is to be done by the 31st of October, next."'' 

The subjoined order relates to the cartage of timber and 
other material for the church, &c., " At a meeting held by the 
trustees the I4th of September, 1700, present, Josiah Hunt, Pres- 

» Westchester Town Rec. Liber, v. 59. 

* Westchester Town Rec. Liber. -v. 141. "It had been previously voted and 
agreed upon that there should be a prison built with a town house upon it, accord- 
ing to the dimensions made by Col. Heathcote, Lib. v. p. 77. 

o Laws of N. Y. vol. I. chapter Ixxxiii. 37. 

■' Westchester Town Rec. Lib. v. 141. 



ident, Edward Waters, Joseph Haviland, John Hunt, Joseph 
Bayley, John Ferris, senr., and Richard Pan ton. 'Tis voted and 
agreed upon that all that shall cart timber and stuff for the 
meeting house, shall have six shillings per diem ; and that 
Joseph Haviland and John Hunt shall agree with a carpenter 
for the timber work and the prison, as they shall see cause^ fee 
Done in behalf of the Freeholders and Commonality of the 

At a subsequent meeting of the trustees, held on the 26th day 
of October, A.D. 1700, " it was resolved that Richard Ward 
shall build the meeting house twenty-eight feet square, with a 
terret on the top, for forty pounds."') 

In an address to the Venerable Propagation Society, the fol- 
lowing account is given of the building of this church : — " We, 
whose names are subscribed, do hereby certify that the church 
of Westchester was built by a rate laid, and levied on the in- 
habitants of the said town in proportion to their estates, in the 
year of our Lord, 1700 ; and that Mr. Morgan, a Presbyterian 
minister of Eastchester, did sometimes come to preach in it, un- 
til such time as Mr. Bartow came and took possession of it in 
the year 1702, since which time it has been supplied by him, 

This building stood on the site of the present church, upon 

• Westchester Town Rec. Lib. v. 145. 
k Westchester Town Rec. Lib. v. 145. 
" Hawks' I^ew York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 463. 


what was then styled the Town Green,a adjoining the old 
County Court-houseb and jail. It was built of wood, quadran- 
gular in form,<> with a pyramidal roof and bell turret in the 
centre ; and was used for the worship of Almighty God until 
the year 1788, when it was removed, and the present edifice 
erected. It now stands near the church yard, on the property 
of Capt. Elnathan Hawkins, having been sold to JVIrs. Sarah 
Ferris, the grand-mother of the late Mrs. Eliza Hawkins, by 
order of the vestry, in 1788. 

The following extract relates to the election of churchwardens 
and vestrymen for this parish, in pursuance of the Act of 

At a meeting held by the Parishioners of Westchester Divi- 
sion, in the borough and town of Westchester, pursuant to an 
act of General Assembly, entitled an "act for the settling a min- 
istry and raising of a maintenance for them," this second Tues- 
day of January, 1701-2 : — 

Present, Mr. Justice Barnes, 
Mr. Justice Baxter. 

Churchwardens chosen at said time. 

Col. Caleb Heathcote, 
Aldn. Josiah Hunt. 

Vestrymen chosen, 
Mr. John Pell, senr., for the Manor of Pelham, 
Mr. Joseph Drake, for Eastchester, 
Mr. Charles Vincent, for Yonkers. 

• On the 5th of June, 1696, the trustees granted unto the Mayor and Aldermen 
of the Borough, for the use of the Corporation, part of the Green in said town, to 
erect a market house and settle the market. Lib. v. 63. 

■> The following extract is copied from the New York Post Boy, for Feb. 13, 
1758: — "We hear from Westchester that on Saturday night, the 4th instant, the 
court house at that place was unfortunately burnt to the, ground. We have not 
heard yet how it happened." 

The Venerable Bede informs us, that in his time, the English Churches were 
square. Speaking of the building of St. Peter's Church, at York, in 627, by King 
Edwin, he says : — " Per quadrum ccepit cedificare basilicam." Vide Bedoe Hist 
Eccles. Lib. ii. chap. 14. 

For Westchester, 


' Mr. William Willett, 

Mr. Thomas Hunt, junr., of the West Farms, 
Mr. Joseph Haviland, 
Aldm. John Bayley, 
Mr. Richard Ward, 
Mr. John Buckbe, 
Edward Collier. 
Entered by order, 

Edward Collier, Recorder.* 

In the year 1702, came from England, the 


who was the first rector of this parish, elected by the vestry 
under the Act of 1693. He was son of Thomas Bartow, de- 
scended from the Bertaut's of Brittany in France,'' and was born 
at Crediton, in Devonshire, A. D. 1673. At an early age he 
was instructed by one Mr. Gregory, entered Christ College, 
Cambridge, Jan. 3 1st, 1689, where he was admitted a sizer 
under the tuition of Mr. Lovett, and graduated in 1692.'' Enter- 
ing the ministry, he was inducted to the vicarage of Pampsford, 
in Cambridgeshire, May the 28th, 1698, and removed to America 
by leave of the Right Rev. Simon Patrick, the then Lord Bishop 
of Ely. 


" HENRY: by divine permission, Lord Bishop of London, to all whom these 
presents, shall or may concern, health in our Lord God everlasting. Whereas, by 

« Westchester Town Rec. Lib. v. 145. 

•> The arms of the Bertautes or Bertaudes, en Bretagne, Da Hertray, Du Ha- 
mel, Du Pointpierre, de la Poissonniere, were : — d'or d la bandede sable, chargee 
de trois besants d'argeut accompagne de six annelets de geules, suis en orle. 

Matriculation books of Christ College, Cambridge. 


virtue of an act of Parliament, made in ye : first year of ye : lleign of our Sovereign 
Lord and Lady, King William and Queen Mary, entitled, an act for ye : abrogation 
of ye oaths of supremity and allegiance, and appointing other oaths, it is provided 
and enacted, that every person, at his, or their respective admission to be incum- 
bent in any ecclesiastical promotion or dignity in ye Church of England, shall 
subscribe and declare before his ordinary, in manner and form as in ye : said act 
as contained ; now know ye, that on ye : day of ye : date hereof did personally 
appear before us, John Bartow, Clerk, to be admitted to ye : Ministerial Function 
in ye : Province of New York, in America, and subscribed as foUoweth, as by 
ye: said act is required, I, John Bartow, Clerk, do declare, that I will conforme 
to ye : Liturgy of the Church of England, as it is now by law established. In 
witness whereof, we have caused our seal manual to be affixed to these presents. 
Dated, the twenty-second day of the month of June, in ye : year of our Lord, one 
thousand seven hundred and two, and in ye twenty-seaventh year of our transla- 


" Henricus, permissione divina, Londonensis episcopus, dilecto nobis in Christo 
Johanni Bartow, clerico, salutem et gratiam, ad peragendum officium ministe- 
riale intra provinciam de Novo Eboraco, in America, in precibus communibus 
aliisque ministeriis ecolesiasticis ad officium ministeriale pertinentibus juxta 
formam descriptam in libro publicarum precum, auctoritate parliament! hujus 
inclyti regni anglise ,in ea parte edita, etprovisa, et canones, et constitutionis, in 
ea parte legitime stabilitas, et publicatas, et non aliter neque alio modo ; tibi de 
cujus hdelitate morum integritate literarum scientia summa doctrina et diligentia 
plurimum confidemus, (praestituta penitus parte juramus totam de agnoscendo 
regiam supremam majestatam, juxta vim formam et effectum statuti parliamenti 
dicti regni anglise, in ea parte editi et pro visi, quam de canonica obedientia nobis 
et successoribus nostris in omnibus recitis et honestis per te prsestanda et exhi- 
benda subscriptisque pertinentibus illis articulis mentionatis in tricesimo sexto 
capitulo libri constitutorum, sive canonum ecclesiasticorum, anno Domini, 1604, 
regia auctoritate editorum et promulgatorum licentiam facultatum nostram con- 
cedimus et impertamur per precedentes, ad nostrum beneplacitum dum tanat 
duraturas, in cujus rei testimonium sigillam nostram, (quam in similibus ple- 
rumque utimur,) prasentibus apponi fecimus dat vicesimo secundo die mensis 
Junii, anno Domini millesimo septengentesimo, secundo nostra translatione vi- 
cesimo septimo."'' 

■ Surrogate's Office, N. Y. Rec. of Wills, vol. v. p. 79. 
' Surrogate's office N. Y. Lib. vi. 


The following documents relate to his induction. 


"Edwardus illustrissim Vice comes Cornbury Provincise Novi Eboraciin Ame- 
rica Strategiis et Imperator et ejusdem ; Vice-Tlialassiarcha, &c. 

Universis et Singulis Rectorib Vicar : Capellanis : Curat : Clericis et Minis- 
tris quibuscumq in et'per totam proedict provinciam ubilibet constitutis ac etiam 
Honorab Caleb Heathcote armig et Josia Hunt Eccsia Paroch'lis de Westchester, 
Eastchester, Yonkers et Man de Pellham, in dicta Provincia in pro hoc tempore 
Adilibus, Salutem. 

Cum Dilectum in Christo Johnem Bartow clericum adRectoriam sive Ecclam 
Proalem PrcEdict de Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers et Man de Pellham in 
America jam yacantem proesentatu Rectorem ejusdem Rectorioe Sive Ecclce pro- 
alis in et de eadem institus vobis conjunctim et divisim comitto et fermiter in- 
jungendo mando, quatenus eundem Johnem Bartow cl,ericum sive procurat suum 
legitrm ejus nomine et pro se in realem actualem et corporalem possessionem 
ipsius Rectorioe sive Eccloe proalis de Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers et Man 
de Pellham proedict. Glebarum, Jureumq et pertinentiu suor universor confera- 
tis inducatis inducive faciatis : et defendatis inductum, et quid in premissis fece- 
ritis me aut alium Judicem in hac parte competentum quemcunq debite (cum ad 
id congrue fueritis requisiti) certificetis seu sic certificet ille vestrum qui proesens 
hoc mandatum fuerit eiecutus. Dat sub sigillo progat diet Provinciae decimo 
nono die Novembris ano salutis millesimo septengentessimo secundo." 



"Virtute infra scripti mandati PrcEsentia Hugh Farquhar & Thomas Hunt, Jo- 
seph Haviland, Daniel Clark & Edward Collier nos Guielmus Vesey Clericus 
& Josias Hunt adelis Parochial's De Westchester & Eastchester &c induximus 
Reverandu Johanem Bartow Clericii in Ecclesiam Parochialem De Eastchester 
& Westchester, Yonkers et Man de Pellham et in realem actualem et corporatem 
possessionem ipsius Rectorill sive Ecclesioe Parochialis et proedict Glebara juriu 
et pertinentiii suora universone ejusdum movilus et consue tri divibus solity ano 
Domini 1702 in cujus rei testimoniu presentibus subscripsimus Die 6to Decembris 
Anno supra dicto." 

GuLiELMus Tesey neo Eboraci Rector. 
JosiAH Hunt Churchwarden. 

Hugh FARauHAR. 

Joseph Haviland. 

Thomas Hunt. 

Danl. Clark. 

Edward Collier. 


'■We whose names are underwritten doe certifie & declare That on Sunday the 
6th day of December Anno Dom. 1702, JohriBartow, Clerk, after his induction, did 
in the Parish Church of Westchester Read morning and evening service according 
to the exact form by act of Parliament prescribed & immediately after the reading 
of ye aforesaid service did declare his unfeigned assent .and consent to all and 
every thing contained and prescribed in the book of comon prayers as the Law in 
that case directs, before ye congregation on the said day assembled : and also did 
read ye book of ye 39 articles of the Church of England with the Ratification, & 
immediately after ye reading of ye aforesaid articles & Ratification before the Con- 
gregation ; did declare at the abovesaid time and place, his unfeigned assent & 
consent to them and to all things 'therein contained. In testymony whereof we 
who where present have hereunto subscribed our names this 6th day of Decembr. 
Annoq Dom 1702 : Joseph Haviland, William Vesey, H. Collier, Thomas Hunt 
Hugh Parquhar, William Willett, Josiah Hunt, John Williams."* 

It appears that Mr. Bartow was at first appointed to the Parish 
of Rye : for in a letter to him from the secretary of the society, 
the latter says : — " That the Society were displeased for his set- 
tling at Westchester, being by my Lord of London sent for 

"I did, in October last," (observes Colonel Heathcote,) "give'my 
Lord of London my reasons for the necessity of his being settled 
at Westchester, the people in that place having been the first in 
this county who desired a minister of the church, (fee."" To 
this Mr. Bartow alludes in his first letter to the society. 


Westchester, in New- York Province, ith Nov. 1 702. 

"My Lord Cornbury is pleased to fix my abode at Westchester, 
at the request of the vestry, and I suppose I shall enjoy the fifty 
pound per annum, which is settled upon the ministry by act of 
assembly, though there has been great endeavours made this ses- 
sion to annul that act, but we are safe as long as my Lord Corn- 
bury is Governor. There is also fifty pounds settled upon the 

» Surrogate's office, N. Y. Rec. of Wills, vol. v. p. 79, 80. 
>> Hawks' New York M. S. S. from archives at Pulham. 
» See Col. Heathcote's lefier, April 10, 1704. 


ministry at Rye, sixty pounds at Jamaica, sixty pounds at Hemp- 
stead, and forty pounds per annum at Richmond: all which 
places I hope the Reverend and Honorable Society will take 
some speedy care to supply with jninisters of the Church of 
England. The hundred acres of glebe my Lotd of London ob- 
tained of her Majesty for Westchester, is all a wilderness, there 
never was any house upon it, nor any part of it cultivated; the 
meanest laborer here has three shillings per diem wages, so that 
it will be a vast charge to make it habitable ; wh^t I can bestow 
upon it in my time I will, but I cannot expect the assistance of 
the Society, there being such pressing occasions for ministers. 
As I had not time to furnish myself with books in England, I hope 
the society will bestow some upon me, or I beg you would be so 
kind as to send me these following, and let the booksellers be 
paid out of my allowance ; and you will ever oblige. Worthy 

Your most humble and devoted servant," 

John Bartow. 

" 1702. P. S. I have been at great expenses, but I do not 
grudge it in the service of that God who I trust will bless me 
in my endeavours. We have a small house built here for public 
worship, of boards, but there is neither desk, pulpit, nor bell in 
it. The inhabitants indeed live all upon their own, but are 
generally poor ; my best friend is the gentleman my Lord of 
London, recommended me unto. Col. Graham, who is a very 
worthy and ingenuous Gentleman, and a great lover of the 
Church. I have neither Church Bible nor Common Prayer 
Book, which I hope the society will send me, unto whom I de- 
sire you would give my humble duty. 

Mr. Keith, Mr. Ennis, Mr. Vesey, Mr. Mott, Mr. Talbot, and 
myself, met last week at York, to contrive the most proper me- 
thods of settling the church, at the request of the worthy Col. 
Nicholson, who gave £25 towards bearing our charges, an ac- 
count of which you will have."'^ 

• Hawks' New York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 10, 11. 


The following letter from Mr. Bartow to the Secretary of the 
Venerable Society, was probably written in 1702, or the year 
after, although 1 have given the date as it is in the manuscript 
from which it was copied : 


Westchester, New- York, 1st Dec, 1707. 

Sir : 

" After a voyage of eleven weeks, we arrived at New-York, 
Sept. 29th, 1702, where we found a very mournful town, there 
dying near twenty persons daily for some months. ^ I lodged 
one night in the town, and next day went to Col. Graham's, in 
Westchester, and lodged also one night, and the next day some 
of the town of Westchester came for me, and desired me to go 
along with them and give them a sermon the next Sabbath 
day,'' which I readily consented to do, it being in my way to 
Rye, to which I was designed. Col. Heathcote and some of the 
chief inhabitants being at church, the latter, with his approba- 
tion, invited me to stay amongst them ; in regard, it was the 
County Town, and reasonably ought to be supplyed first, which 
I referred to the determination of my Lord Cornbury ; my goods 
being on board still, (as I remember.) On Monday I returned 
to York, and Mr. Vesey engaged me to preach for him on an 
appointed fast, that week, after which I returned to Westches- 
ter, and preached either there or at York every Sunday, until 
my Lord Cornbury returned from Albany, when, with some of 
Westchester, who were very desirous I should stay with them, 
I went to Jamaica to wait on his Lordship, (who went there by 
reason of the sickness at New- York,) to deliver him ray creden- 
tials and receive his commands, which were to continue in 
Westchester, to which place I was soon after called by the ves- 

• This is supposed to have been the yellow fever, although it was not so called 
in 1703. It was brought from St. Thomas's, and proved very fatal in New York, 
fc This was on the 3rd of Oct., 1702. 


try, and received instruments of induction from his Lordship ; 
but the troubles that soon followed to separate Eastchester and 
New Rochelle from belonging to Westchester (of which I have 
given you an account) were not inconsiderable." 

" Westchester was not wholly free from the mortal distemper at 
New- York, and such as were sick I visited, and baptized one 
man, (aged forty years) a few hours before he died, who seemed 
thankful that he had at last such' a blessed opportunity after so 
long neglect. The first half year being winter, I lodged at a 
public house, preaching once every Sunday, and upon occasion, 
visiting the sick. After winter was over, I lived at Col. Gra- 
ham's, six miles from the church, and all. the summer preach't 
twice every Sunday, sometimes at Westchester and sometimes 
at Jamaica, on Long Island, about two miles distant from Mr. 
Graham's, at my own charge, nor have I had any board given 
me since I came, and once I met with great disturbance at 
Jamaica. Mr. Hobbart, their Presbyterian minister, having 
been for some time at Boston, returned to Jamaica the Saturday 
night as I came to it, and sent to me at my lodgings (being then 
in company with our Chief Justice, Mr. Mumpesson, and Mr. 
Carter, her Majesty's comptroller,) to know if I intended to 
preach on the morrow ; I sent him answer I did intend it. The 
next morning the bell rung as usual, but before the last time 
ringing, Mr. Hobbart was got into the church, and had began 
his service, of which notice was given me, whereupon I went 
into the church, and walked straight way to the pew, expecting 
Mr. Hobbart would desist, being, he knew, I had orders from 
the Governor to officiate there, but he persisted, and I forbore to 
make any interruption. In the afternoon I prevented him, be- 
ginning the service of the Church of England before he came ; 
who was so surprised, when after he came to the church door and 
saw me performing divine service, that he suddenly started 
back, and went aside to an orchard hard by, and sent in some 
to give the word that Mr. Hobbart would preach under a tree. 
Then I perceived a whispering through the church, and an 
uneasiness of many people, some going out, some seemed 
amazed, not yet determined to go or stay ; in the meantime, some 
that were gone out returned again for their seats, and then we 


had a shameful disturbance, hawling and tugging of seats, 
shoving one the other off, carrying them out and returning again 
for more : so that I was fain to leave off till the disturbance was 
over, and a separation made, by which time I had lost about 
half of the congregation, the rest remaining devout and attentive 
the whole time of service ; after which we lock't the church 
door, and committed the key into the hands of the sheriff. We 
were no sooner got into an adjoining house, but some persons 
came to- demand the key of their meeting house, which being 
denyed, they went and broke the glass window, and put a boy 
in to open the door, and so put in their seats and took away the 
pew cushion, saying they would keep that, however, for their 
own minister ; the scolding and wrangling that ensued are by 
me ineffable. The next time I saw my Lord Cornbury, he 
thanked me, and said he Avould do the church and me justice :, 
accordingly, he summoned Mr. Hobbart and the head of the 
faction before him, and forbade Mr. Hobbart ever more to preach 
in that church ; for, in regard, it was built by a publick tax,, 
it did appertain to the established church, (which it has quietly 
remained ever since, and is now in possession of our Rev. Brother,. 
Mr. Urquhart.) My Lord Cornbury threatened them all with the 
penalty of the statute, for disturbing divine service ; but upon, 
their submission and promise of future quietness and peace, he 
pardoned the offence. Not long after this, my Lord requested 
me to go and preach at Eastchester ; accordingly, I went, (though 
some there had given out threatening words should I dare to 
come,) but though I was there very early, and the people had 
notice of my coming, their Presbyterian minister, Mr. Morgan,, 
had begun service in the meeting-house, to which I went straight 
way and continued the whole time of service without interrup- 
tion, and in the afternoon 1 was permitted to perform the Church 
of England service ; Mr. Morgan being present, and neither he 
nor the people seemed to be dissatisfied, and- after some time of 
preaching there afterwards, they desired me to come oftener ;. 
and I concluded to minister there once a month, which now 
I have done for about three years, and Mr. Morgan is retired 
into New England. The winter drawing on, and finding it too 
hard for me to ride from Mr. Graham's to attend on my ministry 


on all occasions, I returned to "Westchester, and there being no 
very suitable place for me to board at, I hired a house for half a 
year, where I lived alone, and had my victuals dressed at a 
neighboring house ; and at the end of half a year, being not per- 
mitted to renew my lease, I bought a house of ray own, and five 
acres of land, at£100, where (I bless God) I have inhabited 
ever since in the conscientious discharge of my duty, hardly ever 
missing to officiate on the Lord's Day in my parish, and there 
have discharged that duty either in the Jerseys, at Rye, or at 
some other place, excepting thrice by reason of sickness, and 
twice for coldness and foulness of the weather, wanting a con- 
gregation ; always preaching twice a day in the summer, and 
once in the winter. I have been always ready to visit the sick 
when sent for, and before frequently, if I knew of it, not refusing 
in the time of very mortal diseases, which we have frequently 
had since I came here, few houses escaping either sickness or 
death, being by night and by day, frequently riding more than 
ten miles a day, I may say twenty. I have administered the 
sacrament of Baptism to a great number of people, young and 
old, and the sacrament of the Lord's Supper publickly, three times 
a year at the three usual feasts, Christmass, Easter, and Whit- 
sunday ; to partake of which, I must confess, I have a few, gen- 
erally about twelve communicants, but have administered it to 
many on their sick and dying beds, who never received it be- 
fore. I take care to catechise the children in the church ; and 
to make amends for an omission of that duty at any time, I 
allow a schoolmaster twenty shillings per annum to encourage 
him to instruct the children in the church catechism. I can't 
repeat^to you the many janglings and contentions I have had 
with Q,uakers and Dissenters ; nay, I may say with Atheists 
and Deists, but beg you will believe the whole course of our 
ministry' has been very onerous and difficult; and if I have 
failed in any part of my duty, (as it seems you are informed,) 
let me know it in your next, that I may amend. Perhaps there 
is more my duty than I know of, especially if a minister may 
not be allowed judgment of discretion in things that do not re- 
spect canonical obedience, but be obliged to please singular 
fancies and humours repugnant to general reason and usage. 


I must also tell you that our church is wainscotted, and in a 
short time will be ceiled over head, and more decently seated, 
and the communion table enclosed with rails and bannisters ; 
and am very sorry for that great loss we have had at sea of. 
church ornament, not knowing how it may be repaired but by 
the same gracious donors. 

Since my last I have received some old arrears, and hope to 
have my salary here better paid : when we are well settled, we 
may inform the remiss that they must pay their dues. I have 
obtained of the town of Westchester (on a time when it lay in 
my way to do them service with the Governor) a grqnt of twenty 
acres of glebe, and three acres of meadow within half a mile of 
the church ; which, in time, will be a convenient residence for a 
minister, and also a small share in some undivided land, which 
will be to the quantity of about thirty acres more, but about 
about four miles distant. I shall only add my humble thanks 
and duty to the society, and that I remain, &c., (fcc. 

John Bartow."* 

Colonel James Graham, to whom Mr. Bartow alludes in the 
above letter, was a native of Scotland, and a near relation of 
James Graham, Marquis of Montrose.'' In 1691 he was returned 
as one of the four members of the Provmcial Assembly for the 
City and County of New York, and in 1699 was chosen speaker 
of that body. He was the author of the law for the maintenance 

• Hawks' New York, M. S. S. from archives atFulham, vol. i. 171 to 175. 

' " The ancient and powerful family of Graham," says Sir Walter Scott, in the 
hady of the hake, " held extensive possessions in the counties of Dumbarton and 
Stirling. Pew families can boast of more historical renown, having claim to 
three of the most remarkable characters in the Scottish annals ; Sir John Gr^me, 
the faithful and undaunted partaker of the labours and patriotic warfare of Wal- 
lace, fell in the unfortunate field of Falkirk, in 1298. The celebrated Marquess 
of Montrose, in whom De Retz saw realized his abstract ideas of the heroes of 
antiquity, was the second of these worthies ; and notwithstanding the severity of 
his temper, and the vigour with which he executed the oppressive mandates of the 
Funics, whom he served, I do not hesitate to name, as the third, John Graham, of 
Claverhouse, Viscount of Dundee, whose heroic death, in the arms of victory, may 
be allowed to cancel the memory of his cruelty to the non-conformists, during the 
reigns of Charles II. and James II." 


of the clergy, and settlement of the church in 1693. He was 
also Recorder of the city of New- York from 1693 to 1700, and 
subsequently received the appointment of Attorney General of 
the Province. He was elected senior warden of this parish in 
1703, and for a time was one of its principal supporters. His 
residence stood on the spot occupied by the farm house of Wil- 
liam H. Leggett, Esq., of West Farms. He died in 1767, and left 
several children. Augustine was Surveyor General of the Prov- 
ince, and Isabella married the Hon. Lewis Morris, of Morrisania.* 
In the vestry book of this parish occurs the following election 
for Church officers, about three months after Mr. Bartow's arri- 
val : — " Att a meeting held in the Borrough town of Westchester, 
by the parishoners of said parish, pursuant to an Act of General 
Assembly, entitled an act for the settling a Ministry and raising 
a maintainance for them, and Mr. John Bartow being settled 
minister of said parish, and his maintainance ought to be taken 
care for, do voluntaryly make choice of the Vestry & Church 
Wardens this 12th day of January, in the first year of the Q,ueens 
Majesties Raigne 1702-3, as foUoweth : — 


Mr. Justice Pell, Mr. Justice John'Hunt, 

Mr. Justice Willett, Mr. Justice Graham, 

Mr. Justice Josiah Hunt,^ Mr. Justice Bayley. 

Lieutenant Col. Graham, Justice Josiah Hunt. 

Thomas Baxter, sen., Joseph Haviland, 

Joseph Drake, Thomas Pell, 

.John Archer, Miles Oakley, 

John Buckbee, Daniel Clark, 

Thomas Hunt, sen., of West Farms, Peter le Roy. 
Edward Collier, clerk. Erasmus Allen, Messenger.'' 

* Surrogates Office, New- York, Lib. xxvi 13. 
' Westchester vestry book. 


At a meeting of the vestry, " held this 3rd day of June, 1703, 
by reason of the County courte, this day its agreed upon by ye 
Justices and Vestry that they will meet at 12 o'clock on the 5th 
day of this instant month, in order to regulate matters concern- 
ing the parish and the maintenance of the minister."* 

" Att a meeting held by the Justices 6c Vestrymen of West- 
chester, Eastchester, Yonkers &, the manor of Pelham, being in 
one parish or division this 5th of June, 1703 : — ^^ 


Mr. Justice Pell, Mr. Justice Drake, 

Mr. Justice Pinkney, Mr. Justice Bayley, 

Mr. Justice Hunt. 


Mr. Joseph Drake, Mr. Joseph Haviland, 

Mr. Miles Oakley, Mr. John Archer, 

Mr. Daniel Clark, Mr. John Buckbee, 

Mr. Thomas Hunt, Jr. 

"It is agreed upon by the said Justices & Vestrymen, that there 
shall be raised fifty-five pounds for the Ministers maintenance &. 
poor of the parish. The Q,uotas for each place is as followeth : — 


£27 18 

Morris Anna, 

3 7 


7 13 


1 13 


7 3 


7 6 


To be paid unto the Churchwardens att or before the 15th of 
December next ensuing. 

Edward Collier, Clerk."'' 

• Westchester vestry book. 

* Ibid. 


The next letter from Mr. Bartow to the Secretary bears date, 

Westchester, in the Province of New- York, 
in America, May 25th, 1703. 


" My Lord Cornbxiry is very kind in countenancing the settle- 
ment of the Church of England, and to preserve that mainte- 
nance which has been provided by act of Assembly for orthodox 
ministers, altho' there have been great endeavours to anniill that 
act since they saw the church pouring in upon them, which en- 
deavours have been chiefly showed, in my parish of Westchester, 
as follows : the act of assembly doth unite Westchester, East 
Chester, Yonkers, and the manor of Pelham, into one parish, who 
are obliged to contribute the sum of £50 per annum for the 
maintenance of an orthodox minister. 

Now Eastchester, having an independent minister, endeavours 
at my coming, to make themselves a distinct parish, and used 
many means to prevent and disturb my settlement at Westches- 
ter, but all there attempts were frustrated by my Lord Cornbury ; 
and now they begin to come into better temper, many of them 
having left their minister are joyned with us : nay, the minister 
himself talks of coming to England for Episcopal orders. 

Another obstruction has been in the manor of Pelham, the 
inhabitants of which are French Protestants, who have Mr. Bon- 
dett for their minister ; a gent in Episcopal orders, (but not using 
the liturgy of the Church of England) and therefore they have 
the greater plea to sue for an exemption ; but the Quota, West- 
chester intends to lay annually upon them (viz. £5) is' so incon- 
siderable, and the people many and wealthy, that my Lord Carn- 
bury would not hear of any alteration, and my Lord has pre- 
vailed with Mr. Bondett to cease from any further endeavours. 

That land which my Lord of London obtained of her Majestie 
for the Church at Westchester, is now claimed by an heir ; the 
case in short is thus : — 

John Richardson, of the parish of Westchester, married his 
daughter Mary to Joseph Hadley ; the said John Richardson 
some time after, in his sickness whereof he died, makes a will 
and bequeaths to his said daughter Mary, one hundred acres of 


land. The said daughter dyes also soon after her father, but 
left issue by the said Joseph Hadley, her husband. After her 
death, she dying without a will, Joseph Hadley, the husband of 
the deceased, sells' this land to Thomas Williams ; and the said 
Thomas Williams dyes in the possession of the said land intes- 
tate, and without heirs, and, by that means, the land, by the 
judge and the jury, was determined to be escheated to the crown. 
But now George Hadley, the son and heir of the said Jos. Had- 
ley,. which he begot of the said Mary, the daughter of John Rich- 
ardson, puts in his claim for this land as his mother's heir, al- 
ledging that his Father could not dispose of his mother's inher- 
itance, (altho' it was not settled upon her by deed of jointure, nor 
yet bequeathed to her and her heirs,) and the heir who was also 
his father's exectr. &, admtr., has (as I am informed) received 
part of the said purchase money of the said Williams. I hum- 
bly beg you would lay this matter before the Society, that they 
may assist us with timely advice yt ye Church may not loose 
any of her rights. I have been at great charges since I left 
England, but doubt not God will provide things necessary for 
my subsistence ; my earnest desire is to answer the glorious 
ends of my mission, and my greatest circumspection is to be- 
have myself so as becometh one employed by so many great and 
good men : that I may never give a reason to reflect ; I have 
been upon duty ever since I came out of England, but as for 
the proportion and commencement of ray salary, I thankfully 
submit it to the pleasure of the Society, for whose health and 
prosperity I shall ever pray, who am worthy sir.^^ 

Your most humble, 

and obliged servant, 

John Bartow." 

The subjoined letter from Colonel Heathcote to the Secretary 
will serve to throw additional light upon the early history of this 

» Hawks' New York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 18, 19, 20. In 
1704 Mr. Bartow received from the Society .£50 per annum, and a benevolence of 
£30. See first report of Yen. Prop. Soc. issued in 1704. 



Manor of Scarsdale, New- York, \Qth April, 1704. 

" Mr. Bartow showed me the copy of a letter (the original as he 
told me, being sent to my Lord Cornbury) wherein you acquaint 
him that the Society were displeased for his settling at West- 
chester, being by my Lord of London, sent for Rye, and that he 
should get a line or two either from my Lord Cornbury, or at 
least from me, to satisfy him in that matter. I did in October 
last, give my Lord of London my reasons for the necessity of 
his being settled at Westchester, the people in that place having 
been the first in this county who desired a minister of the church ; 
and being disappointed, might have been of ill consequence, for 
no sooner was Mr. Bartow arrived, but ye vestry immediately 
came to me and gave me no rest untill I consented to use my 
interest with my Lord Cornbury to have him inducted there, and 
the inhabitants of Rye, supposing Westchester was first to be 
supply'd, were easy in that matter, there being on one hand, no 
fear of disobliging the people of Rye, and on the other, great dan- 
ger of hurting the interest of the church at Westchester ; I de- 
sired my Lord Cornbury to induct him there, and what I did 
therein being intended for the best, I beg that the society would 
not take amiss. Sir, being favor'd with this opportunity, I can- 
not omitt giving you the state of this county in relation to the 
church, and shall begin the history thereof from the time I first 
came amongst them, which was about twelve years ago, when 
I found it the most rude and heathenish county I ever saw in my 
whole life, which called themselves christians, there being not 
so much as the least marks or footsteps of religion of any sort. 
Sundays being the only time sett apart by them for all manner 
of vain sports and lewd diversions, and they were grown to such 
a degree of rudeness, that it was Intolerable ; and having then 
the command of the militia, I sent an order to all the captains, 
requiring them to call their men imder arms, and to acquaint 
them that in case they would not, in every town, agree amongst 
themselves to appoint readers, and pass the sabbath in the best 
manner they couldj till such times as they could be better provi- 


ded : that they should every Sunday call their companies under 
arms, and spend the day in exercise, whereupon it was unani- 
mously agreed on thro' the county, to make choice of readers, 
which they accordingly did, and continued in those methods 
sometime. After which the people of Westchester, Eastchester, 
and a place called Lower Yonkers, agreed with one Warren 
Mather, and the people of Rye, with one Mr. Woodbridge, both 
of New England, there being at that time scarce six in the whole 
county who so much as inclined to ye church. After Mr. Mather 
had been with them for some time, Westchester Parish made 
choice of me for one of their churchwardens, in hopes of using 
my interest with Colonel Fletcher to have Mather inducted to ye 
living. I told them it was altogether impossible for me to com- 
ply with their desire, it being wholly repugnant to the laws of 
England to compell the subject to pay for the maintenance 
of any minister who was not of the national church, and that 
it lay not in any Governor's power to help them, but since 
they were so zealous for having religion and good order 
settled amongst them, I would propose a medium in that mat- 
ter; which was, that their being at Boston a French Protestant 
minister, one Mr. Bondett, a very good man, who was in orders 
by my Lord of London, and could preach both in Enghsh and 
French; and the people of New Rochelle being destitute of a 
minister, we would call Mr. Bondett to the living, and the parish 
being large enough to maintain two, we would likewise con- 
tinue Mr. Mather, and support him by subscriptions. The ves- 
try seemed to be extremely well pleased with this proposal, and 
desired me to send for Mr. Bondett, which I immediately did, 
hoping by that means to bring them over to the church ; but 
Mather, apprehending what I aimed at, persuaded the vestry to 
alter their resolutions, and when he came, they refused to call 
him ; so that projection faihng, and finding that it was impos- 
sible to make any progress towards settling the church, so long 
as Mather continued amongst us : I made it my business, in the 
next place, to devise ways to get him out of the county, which 
I was not long in contriving, which being effected, and having 
gained some few proselytes in every town, and those who were 
of the best esteem amongst them, and being assisted by Mr. 


Vesey and Mr. Bondett, who very often preached in several 
parts of the county, baptizing their children. By these easy me- 
thods, the people were soon wrought into a good opinion of the 
church, and indeed, much beyond my expectation ; and the 
truth is, nothing is so agreeable to my natural temper, nor do I 
like any way in making converts so well, as by soft and easy 
means, in convincing men's minds, and satisfying them in all 
their foolish notions against the best of churches ; for as those 
are not only most agreeable to religion, so they likewise do the 
work most effectually; for when anything of that nature is car- 
ried on with heat, loose and irreligious men immediately own 
.the faith, and turn violent persecutors ; being overjoyed of any 
opportunity to gratify their natural temper, and by the rigour of 
their proceedings, as well as their vicious lives, not only bring 
a scandal upon the church, but prevent its growth, for all men 
who have any sense of virtue or honour, and might be a means 
of their conversion to bring over many more, abhor to be direct- 
ed by such guides ; and indeed to do a work of this nature effec- 
tually, it ought to managed with a more than ordinary care, and 
those on whom the conversion is to be wrought, in their infancy 
must be dealt with as much tenderness as children, for before 
they are well fixed and rooted, the denying them a rattle or some 
indifferent trifle, very often makes them start, but much more so 
when anything very material and reasonable in itself is with- 
held them. A mischief of this nature had like to have attended 
in this county for Westchester parish, which contains about six- 
teen miles in length, wherein there are three towns, in each of 
which there is a small church (viz.) Westchester, Eastchester, 
and New Rochelle, besides a place called Lower Yonkers, and 
it being impossible that my one minister could take due care of 
all those places, and then consequently very hard that any peo- 
ple should pay to a minister, it was morally impossible for them 
to have any benefit from ; and Rye Parish being under the like 
misfortune : I brought the towns in both parishes, except West- 
chester, to this result ; that they should petition the Governor's 
Council and Assembly, that instead of two ministers of the 
church, there should be three appointed for the county, and that 


they should live at the most convenient places for the service of 
the whole county, dividing the bread of life so equally, that 
every town might have their fair and equal-proportion ; and 
when, with a great deal of pains, I had brought this matter to 
pass, and even whilst 1 was hugging myself with a satisfaction 
of having finished my task in this county, to my wonderful sur- 
prise, I met with a violent opposition from six or eight warm 
men of Westchester ; this storm, by degrees, run to that height 
that we were obliged to decline the matter ; however, with the 
blessing of God, nothing shall discourage me, for I neither have 
nor shall be wanting in my best endeavours to preserve this peo- 
ple in a temper to receive the church among them ; and was I 
worthy to give my advice in these matters, it should be that 
every minister who is sent over by the society should be required 
to send a list of all the inhabitants of their parish, with the towns 
and places of their abode, dividing the list of each town and 
place into three distinct parts ; in the first, who are the commu- 
nicants ; in the second, those who come to hear them, but do 
not communicate; and in the third, which are Q.uakers and 
others, who are Dissenters, and that they should be strictly di 
rected constantly to visit ye Quakers and those who dissent 
from the church, and use their best endeavours to persuade those 
who are reconciled to the church and regular in their lives, and 
do not communicate to receive the sacrament, and to give the 
society an exact account every six months, at least, what pro- 
gress they make therein ; and further, they should be ordered 
not to fail preaching in every town within their respective par- 
ishes, according to the proportion of the inhabitants ; by this 
means the society will have a true account of the growth of the 
church, and what service is done by those they send over, and 
the bread of life will be equally dealt among the people ; and in 
case the mmisters find that their duty is too hard, that they 
jointly solicit the government that this county might be divided 
into three parishes, for one of which there cannot be a better 
man than Mr. Boudett, whom I mentioned in the former part of 
my letter, whose character I have already very often and fully 
given to my Lord of London, and will be altogether needless to 


insert here. We have in this county six small towns, viz. West- 
chester, Eastchester, New Rochelle, Mamaroneck, Rye and Bed- 
ford, besides a place called Lower Yonkers, containing about 
twenty families, and another the Manor of Philipsburgh, about 
forty families. Now, were those three ministers appointed for 
the county, viz. one at Westchester, which is the westermost 
part of the county, another at Rye, which is the eastermost, and 
another at New Rochelle, which is pretty near the centre ; those 
dividing their duty fairly and equally, the whole county might 
be taken care of, and the ministers not over-burthened. Upon 
my word, sir, it gives me a great deal of concern, when I con- 
sider what pains and charge, the society have been and are at, 
to propagate the Gospel in these parts of the world, and that a 
gent (I mean Mr. Bartow, who is a very good man,) should be 
sent over on that errand to this county, which consists of about 
four hundred families, of which not above forty or fifty have any 
benefit of him ; and should the minister of Rye serve us in like 
manner, not above one-third of the county would be better for 
all the cost and labor bestowed upon us, and notwithstanding 
the arguments which are used by the men of heat, that the 
congregation ought to follow the minister, and not he the people ; 
it will be time enough to preach up that doctrine twelve or fif- 
teen years hence, when perhaps the county won't only be much 
more willing, but more able to maintain six ministers than they 
can three now, besides those who live some three or tour, others 
seven to fourteen miles from Westchester and Rye, tho' once in 
a great while they might come, I mean the masters and mis- 
tresses of families, yet it will be morally impossible for them to 
move their children so fiir, of whom the greatest hopes are, and 
with whom by catechising and other ways, the most pains ought 
to be taken. I had once formed a projection for fixing schools in 
this county for the benefit of all the youths therein, in order to 
their being trained up, not only in learning, but in their tender 
years to ingraft them in the church, but the storm which was 
lately raised upon me concerning church affairs, made me lay 
the thought of it aside for a while. However, if God is pleased 
to spare my life a little longer, I will, with his assistance, set it 


on foot, and hope it will be blessed with its desired effect. I am 
told it is with a great deal of difficulty that any gentlemen are 
prevailed upon from any of the colleges to come over to these 
parts, and it is no wonder to me that it is so, for those who are 
ingenious men and regular in their lives, and qualified for doing 
any service here, cannot want preferment at home, that for a 
remedy therein, if it could be so ordered that such of the New 
England ministers as should be willing to conform, could be ore- 
dained here, it would not be by much so great a charge, and one 
of them would do as much or more service in bringing home the 
people to the church, as the best divine which could be sent from 
home. If I am not misinformed, the society allow those gentle- 
men which come over £60 sterling per annum, and her Majesty 
is pleased to give every one of 'em £20 to buy necessarys for 
their voyage. Now, was there only £20 laid out in proper goods 
for these parts, it would make £50 this country money, and pay 
for the extraordinary charge of insurance to prevent any risque 
in permitting it that way, which, with the allowance of the 
parishes here, would amount to £100 per annum, and would be 
a handsome benefice, enough for any who has had their educa- 
tion in Boston College, by which means these ministers might 
be supported, with the charge of one as it is now ; nor do I be- 
lieve there can be a more effectual way to do the work than 
by that method. 

"Since writing the above, and whilst it was waiting for a pas- 
sage, Mr. Pritchard is arrived, whom my Lord of London has 
directed to officiate in Rye parish ; he is a promising young gent 
and I question not but will, with God's assistance, do great ser- 
vice to the church : he shall not want anything I can do for him 
to make his pilgrimage easy, nor any advice which I can give 
him to answer the end of his coming, and be pleased to present 
my most humble duty to the society, and most hearty thanks for 
their favours, and may assure themthat so long as it shall please 
God to spare my life, I won't cease my best endeavours for the 
service of the church, and should with the greatest satisfaction 
imaginable, receive any commands from them on that account. 


I fear I have been already too troublesome, so shall not enlarge 
further at present, but remain Sir, 

Your most obedient 

humble servant, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

The following extracts from the town records, relate to the 
twenty acres given by Westchester division for a glebe. 

" At a meeting held by the Trustees, and the freeholders and commonality of 
the town of Westchester, the 3rd of August, 1703, &c." 


Josiah Hunt, senr., John Ferris, junr., 

John Ferris,, Miles Oakley, 

John Hunt, Daniel Turner, 

Thomas Baxter, senr., Thos. Haden, 

Joseph Hunt, junr., John Oakley, 

Joseph Haviland, Robt. Heustis, junr. 

"Whereas motion being made to the trustees, that it would be very necessary 
that some land near the town should be laid out for parsonage lands ; and be for the 
use and behoof of such minister as from time to time should be settled amongst us ; 
it is therefore voted and agreed upon, by the major part of the trustees aforesaid, 
that there shall be laid out for the use aforesaid, sixteen acres of land, that is to 
say, four acres where Edward Collier's old lott was, and that twelve acre division 
which was laid out to Samuel Palmer and exchanged with the town by Israel 
Honeywell^ and that John Hunt, Miles Oakley, and Joseph Hunt, junr., shall lay 
it out.""' 

At a subsequent meeting of the trustees, &c., held the 3rd day of November 
1703, the minutes are as follows : — 

" Whereas at a meeting of the trustees, held the 3rd of August last past* it was 
.voted, that four acres of Edward Collier's old lott should be laid out in part of the 
parsonage lands ; and the trustees at this meeting, having considered the inconve- 
niency at distance from the other part of the land intended for yt purpose ; it is 
therefore voted and agreed upon by the major part of the trustees aforesaid, that 
the eight acre division of land in the lott fronting to the sheep pasture, formerly 

adjoining to that lott of twelve acres which was Sam P , and did belong to 

Miles Oakley's orphants, and the aforesaid twenty acres of land shall be counted, 
deemed, and taken for Parsonage lands for ever, any vote, agreement, or record of 
the trustees to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding, &c,"i> 

• Hawks' New York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 33 to 39. 

* Town Rec. of Westchester, Liber, vi. 17. 
' Ibid. Liber, vi. 18. 


At a meeting held by the Trustees of the Freehold and Commonality of the 
Town of Westchester, the 3rd of May, Annoq Dom. 1704. 

John Ferris, senr., John Bayly, 

Thomas Baxter, senr., John Oakley, 

Robt. Huestis, Janr., Thomas Haden, 

Miles Oakley. 

"It is voted and agreed upon by the trustees aforesaid, that for a further encou- 
ragement given to Mr. John Bartow, Rector of Westchester, and his successors, 
besides the 20 acres of land within the town, already laid out for a Parsonage 
land for ever, yet, nevertheless, for the better establishing of the Church of Eng- 
land, and benefit of the said Mr. John Bartow and his successors, the trustees 
aforesaid do give and grant three acres of salt meadow, be it more or less, lying 
situate in the town aforesaid, and is butted and bounded as foUoweth : — that is to 
say, on the west side of the great creek between Robt. Huestis' meadow and Ed- 
ward Harden's meadow. Together with a twenty-five pound privilege ot com- 
monage on the east side of Brunks's River, of all the land which hereafter shall 
be laid out, which said land has been for many years past known by the name of 
the Long Reach. Done in the behalf of the rest of the trustees, and signed by us." 

Thomas Baxter, 
John Eaylt, 
Miles Oakley." 

The following extract is taken from " a summary account of 
the state of the church, in the Province, as it was laid before 
the clergy, Oct. 5th, 1704, at New- York, <fcc. 


"Here is a church built, but not finished, being neither glazed 
nor ceiled. The parish of Westchester is divided into four seve- 
ral districts, viz. Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the 
Manor of Pelham. 

There is £50 settled on the ministers by act of Assembly. 

There is twenty acres of land given by Westchester division 
for a glebe. 

There is one Independent Congregation at Eastchester, whose 

* Westchester Town Rec. Lib. vi, p. 44. 


minister designs to leave there, whose congregation upon his 
departure, are resolved to join with the church."* 

Mr. Bartow, writing to the Secretary upon the 24th of May, 
1704, says :— "The affairs of the church in this province (thank 
God) are very prosperous, which are greatly owing to the influ- 
ence of my Lord Cornbury. I have received yours, together 
with the opinion upon the, case of the land escheated to the 
Crown, but can give no answer till I have directions from the 
Governor. Mr. Lockier is dead and much lamented. The town 
of Hampstead, upon Long Island, hav§ long expected a mission- 
ary from the society, I hope they will soon be answered. I 
beg you would give my most bounden duty and thanks to that 
Revd. and Honorable body, and excuse my abrupt subscription 
of myself, Sir, 

Your most humble and obliged servant, 

John Bartow."'' 

On the 4th of August, 1703, another act of General Assembly 
was passed, entitled : — "An act for the better explaining and 
more effectual putting in execution, an act of General Assembly, 
entitled, an act for settling a ministry and raising a mainte- 
nance for them, in city of New- York, Counties of Richmond, 
Westchester and dueens' County." This act, which was rati- 
fied by Q,ueen Anne, on the llth of April, 1706, <= fully confirmed 
Mr. Bartow in all the rights appertaining to his own benefice. 

The following extract, from a letter of Mr. Bartow to the 
Secretary, shows what kind of difficulties the former had to con 
tend with, in the discharge of his duties. 

- Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Falham. 

'' Hawks' M. S. S. from archives at'Fulham, vol. i. 29. On the 19th of April, 
1704, the trustees of Westchester voted Mr. John Bartow, as a free gift of the 
town, "a certain piece of land at the rear of his house lot, from the corner of his 
lot next to John Williams, his lot on the south-west, and straight upon a line un- 
til it comes to the west corner." Lib. vi. Town Rec. p. 23. 
L« Laws of N. Y. Ed. by Hugh Gaines, vol. i. 64. 


Westchester, in New- York, in America, 
Aug. 14, 1706. 
" My great business is to plant the church of England amongst 
prejudiced poor and irreligious people, who are more apt to re- 
ceive than to give, who think it a hardship to pay their dues ; 
and we dare not use the law for fear of bringing an odium on 
the church, and on all occasions expect to be civilly treated by 
the minister. My task is greater than I can bear ; I will hold 
out as long as I can with submission to the divine will, who 
feedeth the fowls of the air : trusting he will still feed me, by 
your means, when you come to be sensible of our wants. 
Worthy Sir, 

Your most devoted and obliged servant, 

John Bartow." ^ 

The following items are taken from the vestry minutes :— "At 
a meeting of the justices of the vestry, the 6th of March, 1704-5, 
John Williams, late constable for the year 1703, appeared with 
a receipt from Mr. John Bartow, bearing date the 5th of March, 
1704, for the sum of £26.10, which is the full quota for the 
minister's rate in Westchester." 

"At a meeting of the justices, churchwardens, and vestry of 
the parish of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the Manor 
of Pelham, this 12th of December, 1706, in obedience to his 
Excellency the Governor's order, &c : — 

It is voted and agreed upon by the justices and vestry afore- 
said, that the parish church in Westchester shall be finished, 
that is to say, to seal the sides up to the wall plates, and lay a 
board floor, and make two new door cases, with doors and^win- 
dow shuts for the windows in said church, the upper windows 
excepted : and whereas, Jeremiah Fowler and Isaac . Underbill, 

• Hawks' New- York, M. S. S. from archives at Pulham, vol. i. 126. 



presenting themselves to do said work ; the justices and vestry 
have agreed with them to do said worke for £17, in good cur- 
rent money of New- York, provided, that as soon as they have 
laid the under floor and made the doors, and door cases and 
window shuts, they shall be paid to the value of said work, and 
the remainder of said £17, at the finishing thereof: the jus- 
tices and vestry to find boards, and nails and hinges. 

Edward Collier, Clerk." 

■ "At a subsequent meeting held by ye justices, churchwardens 
and vestry, <fcc. this 23rd day of December, 1707, they found it 
necessary to raise ye sumes, which followeth, viz. : — 

To ye minister's rate and collecting, 

To ye poor, (fee. 

To boards for Eastchester church, . 

To ye clerk of ye vestry, .... 

To ye bell ringer, 

To ye collecting of, 

To ye belfry roof of Westchester church, 
To ye sacrament and collection, =■ 

At this period of Mr. Bartow's labors, the Society appear to 
have withdrawn their annual salary of £50; whereupon, we find 
the clergy of the Province addressing the Secretary in his be- 


"We are informed that the Honorable Society have withdrawn 
their allowance from our Reverend brother, Mr. Bartow, at 
which we are heartily concerned, and think ourselves obliged 

■ Westchester Vestry Book. 













to recommend him to your favor, as a person truly deserving the 
continuance of your bounty. He has, in short, behaved himself 
soberly and prudently to the satisfaction of all his people, dili- 
gent for the good of his church, and pious and exemplary in his 
life and conversation : we hope his piety and goodness will 
merit your allowance, especially when you have considered the 
necessity ; it being impossible to subsist in the discharge^[of his 
office, without an established salary from the Corporation. We 
shall not offer any further trouble at present, only pray, you look 
upon our worthy brother to be a sincere good man, and therein 
you shall oblige, 

Sir, yours, &c., 

Evan Evans, William Vesey, 

Wm. URauHART, Elias Neau, 
John Thomas, George Muirson." 

New- York, 17 April, 1707. 

The next annual report of Mr. Bartow to the Society, shows 
that he was still laboring with great diligence and success. 



From Westchester, in New- York, in 
America, IQth June, 1709. 

"I have fpaid my visits in the Jerseys, and preached there 
three Sundays : 1st. at Topenamus : 2nd. at Shrewsbury : 3rd. 
at Amboy : and Mr. Sharp preached for me once at Westches- 
ter. Mr. Evans was at York one Sunday, in my absence, and 
designed to go up and preach for me, at Westchester, but the 
arrival of the Kinsale from cruising, obliged him to preach on 
board, so that my parish was two Sundays without any eccle- 
siastical ministration, which they never were, so near together, 
since I came. In my way home, I had the honour to be in the 
company of Col. Nicholson, and to receive of him a letter from 


his Grace the Archbishop of Canterbury : and the same had all 
the other missionaries, of which I shall always retain a grateful 
sense, as well for the subject matter therein contained as for his 
Grace's great condescention in casting so favourable an eye upon 
us. I have likewise to tell you that I have this day received 
yours, dated 1st Feby., 1708-9, with some enclosed rules of the 
Society, for which I return you thanks. 

I find there might be a great many congregations made in the 
Jerseys, if there were Episcopal ministers, but find no inclination 
to contribute towards their maintenance : however, I hope you 
will not leave them destitute of your assistance. I know when 
those who are of the church can be most prevalent in their as- 
semblies, (or if I may so say, Parliament,) they will make some 
legal provision for ministers ; but at present the number of the 
Quakers, 4-nabaptists, Libertines, «fcc. is so great that it cannot 
be obtained: but good missionaries will increase the number of 
the one and lessen the other. 

Friday next we have an appointed fast, to supplicate God's 
blessing on the expedition to Canada, which, with preparation 
for Sunday following, when I am to administer the sacrament, 
will not sufi"er me to add, but that I shall always pray for the 
success and prosperity of the Society, and remain. 

Sir, your most devoted and obliged servant, 

John Bartow."* 

" At the end of two years" Mr. Bartow speaks with thankful- 
ness, of having, " by the blessing of Almighty God, been instru- 
mental in making many proselytes to our holy religion, who are 
very constant and devout in and at their attendance on divine 
service ; and, those who were enemies at my first coming, are 
now zealous professors of the ordinances of our church. The 
inhabitants of our parish live scattered and dispersed up and 
down in the woods, so that many cannot repair constantly to the 
church, by reason of their great distance from it." Mr. Bartow 
appears, by his letters, to have been in the habit of making col- 

» Hawks' New- York M. S. S. &om archives at Fulham, toI. i. 193 to 195. 

AND (Church op Westchester. 37 

lections in his church for any very urgent cases of distress. 
Thus, we have the following notices : — " Sept. 5th, 1708, cam ea 
distressed woman, M^idow of Maynard, through Westchester, 
who had nine children murdered by the Indians. Collected 
for her in the church, eleven shillings and six pence. The fol- 
lowing Sunday he made a similar collection for a poor man." 

Upon the 30th of October, 1709, he thus writes :— " we want 
very much a fixed school at Westchester : if Mr. Daniel Clark, 
my neighbour, now in England, should wait upon you, desirous 
of that employment ; I recommend him as a person worthy of it, 
being of good report, a constant communicant, and being a cler- 
gyman's son, has had a pious and learned education. I pray 
you would accept my most bounden thanks for your constant 
favors to me and your other missionaries ; we know you expect 
no returns but our constant labours in the church, which that God 
would give us ability to perform, and you to support, shall be 
ever the prayer of 

Sir, yours &c., 

John Bartow."' 

" At a meeting of ye churchwardens, vestrymen, freeholders, 
and parishioners of the borough of Westchester, held the 10th 
day of January, A. D. 1709 ; — present. 


Joseph Hunt, Major William Willett, 

Thomas Pinckney, John Hunt. 


Were chosen and appointed. 

Joseph Hunt, junr., and Jeremiah Fowler. 

•Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol i. 207. 



For the borough of Westchester, For Eastchester. 
Miles Oakley, Isaac Taylor, 

Thomas Baxter, senr., John Lancaster. 

Thomas Hunt, Nathaniel Tompkins. 

For Yonckers Precinct. For the manor of Pelham. 

John Archer, Thomas Pell, 

Noah Bartow. 

For New Rochelle. 

Anthony Lispenard. 

Collected for the minister, £50 : for the clerk of vestry, £5: 
for collecting, £2 13. The quotas for the different precincts 
were : — 

Westchester, £25 New Rochelle, £8 15 

Eastchester, 9 Pelham, 3 

Yonckers, 8 00 Morrisania,^ 3 

Mr. Bartow writing to the Secretary on the 5th of July, 1710, 
says : — 

" Our church at Westchester increases ; that at Eastchester con- 
tinues constant ; we have sometimes Negroes and Indians come 
to our assembly, and behave themselves orderly ; but the slight 
and contempt of baptism by Quakers and many others, I am 
persuaded keeps them from it : for when they see so many that 
call themselves christians, allowed in the disuse of it, and the 

* Westchester vestry book. "Att a meeting held by ye Justices, vestrymen, 
and churchwardens on ye 18th of Jany., 1708-9 : it was ordered, yt the two 
churchwardens for this ensueing year, shall goe to Mr. Morris to know if yt he 
will pay his arrearidges, or other wayes to knowe if yt he will joyne issue with ye 
parrish to try ye title whether his manner be in ye parrish or not, and make re- 
turn att ye next meeting." 


immorality of many that, are baptized, they contentedly remains 
unbaptized. I have baptized in the year 1709, 42, 14 of which 
were grown persons. I have received a parcel of books writ by 
the late Rev. Dr. Beveridge, on public prayer, and the commu- 
nion, &c., and though there is no advice from whom, I suppose 
they come from that fountain of piety and charity, the renown- 
ed Society, for whose gracious assistance in the works of Christ's 
ministry I remain their debtor, and can only desire that God 
would abundantly reward their pious labours in his church, 
who am. 

Sir, youfs &c., 

John Bartow."^ 
Westchester, New- York, 5th July, 1710." 

Mr. Elias Neau, a vestryman of Trinity Church, N. Y., wri- 
ting the same day to the Secretary, bears the following testimony 
to Mr. Bartow's services : — " Most honored sir — Mr. Bartow has 
done a great deal of good here these six years, for he preaches 
about in places where there are no ministers, &c."'' 

The following is Mr. Bartow's second report for this year : — 


Westchester, 30th Nov., 1710. 

" The Reverend Mr. Bondett's conformity has been of good ef- 
fect ; a new church is built in New Rochelle for the service of 
the Church of England, by voluntary contributions : there is 
some of that place do yet dissent, but the major and better part 
do conform and are zealous. 

I want very much some Common Prayer books, and church 
catechisms : if the society will be pleased to bestow any upon us ; 
I pray they may be directed to me, ' 

I have lately baptized a free Negro man and three children, 
and a Negro woman servant, but 'tis very rare that these people 

• Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives atPalham, vol. i. 218, 219. 
t Ibid.' vol. i. 216, 217. 


can be brought to have any true sense of the Christian reli- 

We have many elderly people that will not be brought to 
have any concern about the necessity of public worship, and yet 
not withholding their children from coming to church : we hope 
they will not follow the example of their parents, many of which 
have been baptized, and in sobriety and piety do promise zeal 
and constancy in the church established. 

I can say no more at present, but that I pray for the success 
and prosperity of the Society, and remain, 

Worthy Sir, Yours, &c. 

Jno. Bartow."'' 

In answer to this letter, the Honorable Society sent the next 
year, " to the Rev. Mr. Bartow, fifty common prayer books, and 
£5 worth more of small tracts, tending to promote piety and 
virtue amongst his people." ^ 

Five months later, he thus communicates the state of his 
parish : — 


Westchester, 31st April, 1711. 

Worthy Sir: 
"I hope you have had by this time an account of the state af 
the church at Jamaica, and the troubles Mr. Poyer has met 
with-all since his coming to that place, from more certain infor- 
mation than I can give you. The vestry are dissenters from 
the church, and refuse still to call him, as the act of Assembly 
directs, and on that pretence still withhold his salary, upon 

* Hawks' Ne-w-York M. S. S. from ajchives at Pulham, toI. i. 239. 
•■ Printed abstracts, of Ven. Soc. 


■which I only presume to observe, that as long as the inhabitants 
of the parishes here, have the power of choosing the vestry, the 
major part of which are Dissenters (by which the vestrymen are 
constituted Patrons to elect, call and present a minister) the 
settlement of our churches here is very precarious, and on 
every vacancy may occasion a disturbance ; for should a dissent- 
ing minister appear, whom the people approved, as it has happen- 
ed now in the case of Jamaica, I question whether any of our par- 
ishes, excepting York, would not call him and reject the clergy- 
man. We cannot hope here for a better regulation of the act 
by our Assemblys, who are also generally Dissenters ; but hope 
that you will think of some methods to establish the Church of 
England in this Province. 

I thank God my own parish are. very well affected td our 
church at present, but we know not how soon the old leaven 
may work again ; prejudice and education are mighty tyrants 
upon mens manners : we have very few but what have been 
educated Dissenters, and have imbibed prejudices therein, and 
we cannot be secure when they will be thoroughly worn out ; 
therefore, should be extremely glad if my Lord Bishop of Lon- 
don, or the Society, were the patrons of our churches. 

I have baptized, in the year 1710, 36 persons. Our church is 
pretty well finished, with seats and rails, and bannisters about 
the altar. Our congregation rather increases both in hearers 
and communicants, but our vestry are the major part Dissenters ; 
they will part with no money but barely what the Assembly has 
allowed for the maintenance of the minister and poor, so that 
we are unprovided of a clerk, none being willing to attend con- 
stantly without rare allowances ; formerly the vestry would al- 
low something, but now they wholly refuse it, being encouraged 
by the success of Jamaica. It would add to the regularity and 
decency of our worship, if the Society would allow £40 or £50 
per annum, to a church clerk, and leave it at the discretion of a 
minister to choose him, and to have a power to turn one out and 
choose another, as he saw cause ; and the society order the salary 


to be paid him by the minister, that no opposition may be made 
when a better may be gotten^. 

Sir, yours, <fcc. 

John Bartow." 

The Venerable Society's abstracts for 1713, say : — '-' Mr. Char- 
les Glover is appointed schoolmaster at Westchester, with a 
salary of £18 per annum, as he is recommended under the 
character of a person sober and diligent, well affected to the 
Church of England, and competently skilled in reading, writing, 
arithmetic, psalmody and the Latin tongue, provided he comply 
with the society's rules, in sending certificates of the number of 
his scholars."'' 

The next year, Mr. Bartow writes as follows : — 


Westchester, April 14, 1714. 


" I have sent you enclosed, an account of the building of our 
churches, and how they have been supplied, signed by those 
who were yesterday at our vestry meeting, and have not leisure 
to get more hands : the ship (as we hear) being ready to sail. 

I have had some old arrears, £9 6 9, due to me, which I 
have been often trying to get, but could not, until our present 
governour, upon my complaint, was pleased to send a threatening 
letter to our vestry, which made those readily comply to annex 
it to the church rate for this year, which said sum I have given 
to the church at Eastchester and Westchester, towards making 
and rectifying of pews and seats. 

The present of books the society has sent, was very gratefully 
received by me and by those to whom they are given. 

The comn:\on prayer books are the most acceptable to those 

• Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Pulham, vol. i. p. 249, 250, 251. 

* Printed abstracts of Yen. Soc. 


who love the church, and I could not avoid giving oifence, hav- 
ing not enough for all. 

The measles have been epidemical throughout the whole 
county this winter, and having not had them myself, nor one 
in my family, and the distemper proving very mortal, I declined 
visiting and baptizing a dying child ; if complaint be made, I 
hope the society will not be offended. The parent said he 
would not defer baptizing a child so long again. He is one in 
the scheme in number of the half duakers. Sir, in the last 
clause of the certificate of the vestrymen, you will find that 
Eastchester was made a distinct parish from Westchester, in 
1700 : the reason whereof, I understand, was this, (viz.) the peo- 
ple of Eastchester being generally Presbyterians, and wishing 
to have a minister of their own, petitioned the Assembly that 
they might be made a distinct parish from Westchester, (to 
which they were before anriexed by act of Assembly,) and ob- 
tained an act of separation ; but when I came among them, they 
were so well satisfied with the liturgy and doctrines of the 
church, that they forsook their minister, and have ever since 
professed themselves members of the Church of England, (ex- 
cepting a very few who are rigid Independents,) and they pay 
their proportion of the fifty pounds per annum, as was allotted 
them by the first act of Assembly. 

If the Society would be pleased to seiid over one of the few 
youths of the Hospital, with an allowance of five pounds per 
annum, to teach the children, sometimes at Yonkers, and some- 
times at Eastchester ; I know the inhabitants would allow him 
£20 per annum more of this country money : and it would be of 
excellent use, if he proved sober and diligent and well affection- 
ated to our church. 

I most gratefully acknowledge the piety, zeal, and generosity 
of the illustrious Society, for their repeated and continued in- 
stances of sincere love unto Christ Jesus, in spreading and sup- 
porting his religion with indefatigable care and immense charges. 
And remain, Sir, &,c.,'^ 

John Bartow." 

' Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archires at FuUiam, vol. i. 473, 474. 


From the society's abstracts we learn : — that " in 1714, by the 
blessing of God on Mr. Bartow's ministry at Westchester, East- 
chester, Yonckers, and the manor of Pelham, where there were 
formerly very few of the church communion, there was visibly 
a very great reformation of manners."* 


Westchester^ Feb. 9th, 1716, 

Worthy Sir : 

" I have preached several funeral sermons since I came here; 
and have not received anything, save once, a table for the com- 
munion was given me b^ a joiner, having preached a sermon at 
his child's funeral."!' 

In answer to certain enquiries, Mr. Bartow again addressed 
the Secretary. 


Westchester, Sept. 12,' 1717. 

Worthy Sir : 

" The church at Eastchester was built about twenty-two years 
since, and supplied always by a Presbyterian minister till about 
one year after my coming here, when they embraced the church 
of England, and accepted of me for their minister ; ^nd though 
they had obtained an Act of Assembly under the government of 
Lord Bellamont, to make them a distinct parish, yet they pay 
their quota of fifty pound per annum to me, according to the first 
establishment. This conformity I acknowledge, greatly owing 
to the measures of my Lord Clarendon, then our Govern our. 

2. There is no parsonage house nor glebe. The church at 
Westchester was built about twenty years since, and supplied 

' Printed abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 

"> Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 519. 


about two years with a Presbyterian minister, who had left them 
before I came. There is no parsonage house, but twenty-three 
acres of glebe given to me and my successors, of the Church of 
England, which is now well worth one hundred pounds, as im- 
proved by me ; scarce worth thirty pound, when I had it first. 
I have likewise obtained for the church a twenty-five pound 
share of an undivided tract of land called Long Reach, the title 
of which has been long controverted between the towns of East 
and Westchester, which will be about thirty acres more if West- 
chester be possessed, but the dispute holds still without signs of 
a determination. 

3. Yonkers has no church, but we assemble for divine wor- 
ship sometimes in an house of Joseph Bebts, deceased, and some- 
times in a barn, when empty, but the people begin to be in a 
disposition to build a church. 

The other of your letters is dated 14th May, 1716, wherein 
you say the Society have ordered you to acquaint me, and the 
rest of the brethren, the clergy,that at our next meeting we should 
inform them if any of our brethren are disaffected to the gov- 
ernment of King George ; and having had a meeting since, not 
long before, can only say, that I am well assured there is not one 
clergyman in this Province, but what is well affected to the gov- 
ernment of his Majesty, King George, whom God bless."* 

Mr. Bartow baptized in the year 1718, " thirty-two persons, 
two of whom were grown persons, and one negro man."!" 

The Society's abstracts for 1719 say:—" To Mr. William For- 
ster, schoolmaster at Westchester, who has been recommended 
as a person very well qualified to instruct the youth in the 
principles of religion' and virtue ; ten pounds per annum is 
allowed, and a gratuity of £10 has been given him in consid- 
eration of his past services, and his present circumstances."<= 

From the Rev. Mr. Bartow, minister of Westchester, in the 
same Province, " that in the year 1719, he had baptized twenty- 
two, one of which was an ancient woman."** 

"Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from arcMres at Fulham, vol. i. p. 524, 535. 
•> Printed abstracts of Yen. P. Soc. for 1718, 
c Ibid. 1719. 


From Mr. Forster, schoolmaster at the same place, " that he 
has at present thirty-five scholars, whom he catechises every 
Saturday, and also every Sunday, that Mr. Bartow goes to ano- 
ther part of the parish; together with all others who will attend, 
and has good success: which is also attested by the Minister and 
chief inhabitants of Westchester.""- 

In 1720, the different quotas for the church and poor of the 
Parish stood thus : — 

Westchester, £37 10 02 ' Eastchester, £12 14 11^ 
Yonckers, 11 12 IQi NewRochelle, 12 14 l| 

Pelham, 4 4 IJ Morrisania, 4 10 

The Society's abstracts for 1720, say : — " That letters have 
been received from the Rev. Mr. Bartow, minister at Westchester, 
in the Province of New-York; that the number of his Communi- 
cants increases, though some are dead or removed to other 
towns, and that he baptized in the year 1720, twenty-five, five 
whereof were grown persons." 

Also, " from Mr. Forster, schoolmaster at Westchester, in the 
Province of New- York, that he takes all the care he can of the 
children, which are sent to him, and has upwards of thirty 
scholars, which he instructs in the Church Catechism."'' 

In 1721, Mr. Bartow informs the Society : — "That since the 
death of Mr. Bondett,'he preaches at four towns; Eastchesten 
Westchester, Yonkers, and New Rochelle, and does other occa- 
sional offices, and that the number of the baptized in the year 
1721, was twenty-eight, two whereof were grown persons." 

The next year the Society allowed " Mr. Bartow, for his ser- 
vice at New Rochelle, ten pounds." In his report for 1722, Mr 
Bartow says : — " That they are repairing the church there (West- 
chester) with the voluntary contributions of the people, procured 
chiefly by the zeal and care of Mr. Forster, the schoolmaster 
there ; .that in the year 1722, he baptized twenty-one persons 

' Printed abstracts of Ven. P. Soc. 
fc Printed abstracts of Ven. P. Soc. 
• Ibid. 


four whereof were adults, one a Negro man."a « In the year 
1723, he baptized forty-five, four whereof were grown persons."b 
Mr. Forster reports :— " That the number of his scholars is as 
usual, and that he has very good success in his teaching, and 
that they are this summer building a new school house : and 
that he is raising a annual subscription for repairing and finish- 
ing the church."<= 



Westchester, in the Province of New- York, 
in America, July 13, 1724. 

Q. How long is it since you yent over to the Plantations as a' missionary ? 

A. Twenty-two years. 

Q. Have you had any other church before you came to that which you now 
possess ; and if you had, what church was it, and how long have you been 
removed 1 

A. No other here : but I was inducted to the vicarage of Pampsford, in Cam- 
bridge, May 28th, 1697, and removed here by leave of Dr. Patrick, then Bishop 
of Ely. 

Q. Have you been licensed by the Bishop of London to officiate as a mission- 
ary, in the government where you now are 1 

A. I was licensed by the Right Rev. Father in God, Henry, Lord Bishop of 
London, June 22nd, 1702, to officiate as a missionary. 

Q. How long have you been inducted into your living 1 

A. I was inducted to my living here, Nov. 19, 1702, Lord Combury being then 
Governor. , 

Q. Are yon ordinarily resident in the parish to which you have been inducted 1 

A. I have been resident in Westchester ever since I came. 

Q. Of what extent is your parish, and how many families in it 1 

A. yij parish is in length about twelve miles, in breadth about seventy : about 
two hundred families. 

Q. Are there any Infidels, bond or free, within your parish, and what means 
are used for their conversion % 

A. We have Infidels, bond and free, who have liberty to come to the churches, 

» Printed abstracts of Yen. P. Soc. 

•> Ibid. 

« Printed abstracts of Ven. P. Soc. for 1723. 


and are not denied baptism when fit and desirous of it ; some of which. I have 

Q. How oft is divine service performed in your church, and what proportion 
of the parishioners attend it % 

A. Divine service is performed in one of our churches every Sunday, when 
I have about seventy auditors in the afternoon, there being not quite so many in 
the morning, by reason that those who live at a distance seldom come in the 

Q. How oft is the sacrament of the Lord's supper administered ; and what is 
the usual number of communicants ■? 

A. The Lord's supper is administered by me, in the church at Westchester, on 
Christmas day, Easter, and "Whitsunday, and at other times, occasionally in other 
places of the parish, and we have usually eighteen communicants, more or less. 
Q. At what times do you catechise the youth of your parish 1 
A. I have been wont to catechise the youth on Sundays in the afternoon, before 
we had a settled school ; but now I leave that office to Mr. Porster, the Society's 
schoolmaster, who not only catechizes in the school, but in the church, when I am 
absent, all that will come. 

Q. Are all things duly disposed and provided in the church, for the decent and 
orderly performance of divine service 1 
A. We have all things decent, excepting the surplice. 
Q. Of what value is your living in sterling money, and how does it arise % 
A. The value of my living is £50 sterling Jof New- York money, which is 
almost £Z2 10, sterling, paid not without some difficulty and loss. 
Q. Have you a house and glebe : is your glebe in lease or let by the year, or 
is it occupied by yourself % 

A. I have twenty-three acres of glebe in my occupation, but no parsonage 
house. I lived at my first coming in an hired house, in expectation of a par- 
sonage house, though talk't of to be btiilt, but finding it would not be eflTected, two 
years ago I purchased one. 

Q. Is due care taken to preserve your house in good repair, and at whose ex. 
pense is it done "i 

A. 1 live in my own house, adjoining the glebe, and have always repaired it 
at my own expense. 

Q. Have you more cures than one ; if you have, what are they, and in what 
manner are they served % 

A. I have four towns under my cure, Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the 
Manor of Pelham, of which New Rochelle is a part, in whose churches I officiate 
on Sundays, according to their several quotas, on the payment of .£50 per annum. 
I preach at Westchester every Lord's day, excepting every fourth Sunday at East- 
chester, three times in the year at Yonkers, and so often as I can at NewRochelle. 
Q. Have you in your parish any public school for the instruction of youth ; if 
you have, is it'endowed, and who is the master % 

A. We have a public school in Westchester, of which Mr. Forster is the so- 
ciety's school master, and we have private schools in other places ; no endow- 
ment ; some family of the name of Pelham that are adjacent, come to Eastchester 
Q, Have you a parochial library ; if you have, are the books preserved and 


kept in good condition ; have you any particular rules and orders for the preser- 
ving of them ; are those rules and orders duly observed? 
A. We have no parochial library. 

C^^^ \JJ.C^^^i^' 


Rector, Sfc, of Westchester.'^ 

In his report to the Secretary, Mr. Bartow observes : — " That 
the church is much in the same condition as when he wrote last ; 
and that in the year 1724, he baptized thirty-nine, two whereof 
were grown persons."*" 

The subjoined extract is from a letter of his to the Secretary. 
The Rev. Mr. Talbot mentioned in the beginning of it, was dis- 
missed from the society's service for alledged Jacobitism : — 


Province of New- York, May Ath, 1725. 
Sir : — 

"" " I am creditably informed that the Society have discharged 
the Rev. Mr. Talbot from being any longer their missionary ; 
whereby the fruits of the pious bequest of the late Archbishop 
of Canterbury do descend to me, as being the next oldest in their 
service, of that province, till by the providence of God we have 
bishops here lawfully established. Nothing is too great for God 
to give, even to the undeserving, and therefore I humbly and 
thankfully should accept it of his gracious providence ; but be at 
the disposal of the most Rev. and Honorable Society, as seems 
by an abstract of their proceedings, Anno 1714 — I should not 
presume to ask it of them, nay, scarce desire it in my private 

• Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 635. 
k Printed abstracts of Ven. Soc. 



thoughts, being conscious of my unworthiness, and enjoined to 
be content in my condition, in which I remain, still praying to 
God for his blessings on their christian labors. 

Your most obedient, &c. 

John Bartow."* 

Probably the last communication the Society ever received 
from Mr. Bartow, is the following : — 


Westchester, October 6th, 1725. 

Worthy Sir : — 
"There being nothing happened extraordinary here, relating to 
tho church since I writ last ; (saving the death of the late Rev. 
Mr. Thomas, of Hampstead, which church with that at Rye, are 
supplyed by the zealous labours of the Rev. Mr. Jenny) I caa 
only, as in duty bound, repeat my thankful acknowledgement 
for the Society's allowance, which is always duly paid by their 
treasurer, and informing you that the pulpit and wainscoat of 
the church at Eastchester, was since decently painted, and a 
new gallery built, and the Presbyterian minister when he comes, 
not permitted to officiate therein. That God would bless the 
labours of the most Rev. and Honorable Society, is &c. 
. Sir, 

Your most obedient, &c. 

John Bartow."'' 

This excellent minister died at Westchester, in 1725. His re- 
mains, according to the custom of that day, were interred under 
the communion table in the old parish church of St. Peter. 
Since the removal of that ancient edifice, however, nothing 
serves distinctly to mark the site of his tomb, but one thing is 

• Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Pulham, vol, 1, p. 664. 
Ibid, vol.1, pp. 664, 665. 


certain, " that he who was with him in his last hour, and made 
his bed in his sickness, will watch over the precious dust till he 
shall bid it rise." 

" So pious, just, and even, as if he mean't 
His name should be his marble monument." 

" Mr. Bartow (says Dr. Hawkins) continued in the discharge 
of his important duties for the long period of a quarter of a cen- 
tury. He was the instrument of bringing many separatists back 
to the church, and admitting into it many hitherto careless adults. 
He likewise gave much of his time to the instruction of the poor 
negroes. By such long and faithful services he secured the 
general esteem of his people.''^ In 1705 he married Helen Read, 
second daughter of John Read, Esq., of Middrew Castle, parish 
of Kirkleston, Scotland ; by this lady he left issue, six sons.i> 
Theophilus, his second son, was the father of the Rev. Theo- 
dosius BartoWj of New Rochelle, whose grandsons are the Rev. 
Theodore B. Bartow, Chaplain in the U. S. N., and the Rev. 
Henry B. Bartow,, of Whitestone, L. I. A grand-daughter of 
Theodosius niarried the Rev. Geo. A. Shelton, of Newtown, L. I. 

The Society's abstracts for 1725, say: — that among other 
sums granted, was " a gratuity of fiftj'- pounds which the society 
have made to Mrs. Bartow, the widow of the late Rev. Mr. Bar- 
tow, a missionary of the society at "Westchester, in the Province 
of New- York, in consideration of her husband's good behaviour 
and diligence in the society's mission for twenty-three years and 
upwards, and having six sons and a wife unprovided for."" 

Mr. Bartow's last will and testament was made on the 24th 
of January, 1725, but not proved until the 1st of April, 1727. 

• Hawkins' Historical Notices of the Miss, of the Church of England, 277. 

•> At a meeting of the trustees for the Borough of Westchester, &c., the 6th day 
of March, 1726-7— according to ye last meeting (21st March, 1725-6,) the commit- 
tee appointed to make report of the persons who had made encroachments upon 
the sheepjpasture, gave in the name ofjMr. Bartow and others. " Whereupon, 
Mr. Forster appeared in behalf of ye orphants of Mr. John Bartow, yt what they 
have taken in upon ye sheep pasture ; yt they will leave out when they rectify ye 
fences." Westchester Town Rec. Lib. ix. 187, 188. 

• Printed abstracts from 18th Feb. 1725, to 17th Feb. 1726. 



In the name op God, Amen, the twenty-fourtli of January, in ye twelvth year 
of the reign of our Sovereign Lord, King George, Annoq Dom. one thousand 
seven hundred and twenty-five, I, John Bartow, of the Burrough Town of West- 
chester, in the County of Westchester, and Province of New York, Clerk, being 
sick and weak in body, but of sound and perfect memory, praise be given to God 
therefore, and considering the uncertainty of this transitory life, do make this my 
last Will & Testament in manner and form following, that is to say : First, and 
principally, I commend my soul to Almighty God my creator, assuredly believing 
that my sins will be remitted, and that I shall be saved by the precious death and 
merits of my blessed Saviour and Redeemer, Christ Jesus.: and my body to the earth, 
to be buried at the discretion of my ex'tors, hereafter named : and touching such 
worldly estate as God hath been pleased to bestow upon me ; I do hereby give 
and dispose of the same in manner and form following, that is to say : First, I 
hereby give and bequeath unto my beloved wife, Helena, one equal third part of 
all my personal estate for the use of her, her heirs, and assigns for ever. Item, I 
hereby will and Order that my funeral charges, and all my just debts be paid out 
of the remainder of my personal estate within convenient time after my decease, 
by my executors hereafter named. Only it is hereby provided, that whereas, John 
Mash, of Westchester above said, boatman, for and in consideration of my be- 
coming bound together with the said John Mash, at his special instance and re- 
quest, and for the proper debt of the said John Mash, by a certain obligation in 
the penal sum of four score pounds, currant money of New York, with condition 
for the payment of forty pounds of like current money, at a certain day in the said 
condition exprest, and for other considerations, did by a certain deed, indented 
under his hand and seal and the hand and seal of Rosamond, his wife, dated the 
sixth day of April, anno dom. one thousand seven hundred and twenty-two, con- 
vey unto me a certain Home Lot, scituate in said Westchester, with its appurte- 
nances, and a twenty-five pounds priviledge of commonage in said town. If the 
said John Mash, his heirs, executors, or administrators, do not well and truly dis- 
charge an^ pay ofi"the said obligation and all sums of money due thereon, within 
one year next after my decease, I hereby order my executors to sell the said lott 
and priviledge, and to apply the money arising by the said sale, towards discharg- 
ing of my debt. Item, I give unto my beloved wife, the use of all the remaining 
part of my personal estate, except what is herein afterwards expressly disposed of 
during her widowhood. And if my said wife shall marry again, (if her husband 
shall immediately, upon their marriage, give good security to my children or their 
guardians, that all such part of my personal estate as shall remain in my wife's 
hands over and above her third part given unto her as aforesaid, immediately at 
and before her marrying again, shall not be wasted or embezzled, but that the 
same, or value thereof, shall be made good at her decease,) then I give unto her 
the use thereof during the term of her natural life, and at her decease, or if upon 
her marrying again, the aforesaid security shall be refused to be given ; then ather 
re-marriage, I give the same equally between my six sons, Thomas, Theophilus, 
Theodosius, John, Anthony, and Basil Bartow, for the use of them and their sev- 
eral heirs and assigns. Item, in consideration that my beloved wife bring up my 
.children I give unto her the sole use and benefit of my dwelling house and home- 


stead, and all my land adjoining thereto, and of all my land at Scabby Indian, 
bounded southeasterly by the land of John Williams westerly by the country road 
northerly by the road that goes to Thomas Haddon's saw mill, and by Daniel 
Turner's land, also of about two acres of land lying within said Daniel Turner's 
land, and of my orchard land, salt and fresh meadow, at the place commonly call- 
ed below, which was formerly Edward Collier's, David Huestiss and Horseman 
Mullinder, and also a twenty-five pounds privilege of commonage in said West- 
chester, for and during the term of her natural life ; and I also give unto my wife, 
until my son John shall attain to the age of twenty-one years, the use of all such 
part of my land in said Westchester, which I lately purchased of David Heustis, 
Nathaniel XJnderhill, Daniel Clark, and Thomas Haddon, and John Heustis, as I 
have not already let out upon lease, and the rents of all such part thereof as I have 
leased. Item, I give unto my son, John Bartow, his heirs and assigns for ever, 
all those tracts of land I lately bought of David Heustis, Nathaniel Underbill, 
Daniel Clark, and Thomas Haddon, and John Heustis, a twenty-five pound priv- 
iledge of commonage in said Westchester, together with all my right, title and 
interest in a tract of land called the Long Reach ; also four acres of salt meadow 
in Westchester abovesaid, which I purchased of James Morris, by a deed passed 
under his hand and seal, dated the fifteenth day of January, Anno Dom. 172 J ; also 
all my tract of land and meadow at Barnagat, in , East New Jersey, being about 
sixty acres ; also two-eighths of a moyety of a sixteenth part of a twenty-fourth 
part or propriety in East New Jersey, granted by Gowen Drummond to John Reid, 
senr., and by said John Reid to me, and my least gold ring, and a new English 
Bible in Q,uarto. Item, I give unto my son, Theophilus Bartow, his heirs and 
assigns for ever, my saw mill, situate and being in Monmouth County, in East 
New Jersey, and all my tracts of land and purchase adjoining, containing about 
one thousand acres, be they more or less ; also a twenty-fourth part of a tenth part 
of an undivided twenty-fourth, or a propriety in East New Jersey granted by Mari- 
on Cambell to John Reid, senr., and by said John Reid to me, and my heaviest 
gold ring, and an English Bible in Gluarto. Item, I give unto my son, Thomas 
Bartow, his heirs and assigns for ever, all my tract of land in Monmouth County, 
in East New Jersey, on Milstone brook, joining to Coll. Anderson's land, contain- 
ing about eleven hundred acres, granted to me and my wife Helena, by my father- 
in-law, John Reid, by deed bearing date the tenth day of November, Anno Domini 
one thousand seven hundred and five ; also one half of a fortieth part of a propriety 
in East New Jersey, granted to me by said John Reid, by deed, dated the fourth 
day of April, Anno Dom. one thousand seven hundred and fourteen, and all my 
Greek and Latin books, my watch, and a new English Bible, in Gluarto. Item, I 
give unto my son, Theodosius Bartow, his heirs and assigns forever, all my tract 
of land situate in Monmouth County, in East New Jersey, on the east branch, con- 
taining five hundred acres, joyning to James Edwards, also all my meadow on the 
south side of said branch, from the lower end of the timber swamp down to the 
mouth of said branch ; also all my tract of Indian purchase land to the northward 
of this tract ; also two-eighths of a moyety of a sixteenth part of a twenty-fourth 
part or propriety of East New Jersey, granted to John Read, senr., by Gowen 
Drummond, and by John Read to me, my other gold ring, and a new English Bible 
in duarto. Item, I give unto my son Anthony Bartow, his heirs and assigns for- 
ever, all my tract of land on Monlapau River, beginning at the head of Mount- 
brook, and runs thence southeast fifty-two chains, thence north northwest half a 


point, westerly to the land late of Robert Barclay, thence southwest to the said 
River, where said Mount-brook falls into said River, thence up the stream of said 
brook to where it began ; also that tract of my Indian purchase land joining on 
the south to my son Thomas's land herein before given him ; also two-eighthS 
of a moyety of a sixteenth part of a twenty-fourth part or propriety of East New 
Jersey, granted by Gowen Drummond to John Read, senr., and by him to me, 
and a new English Bible in Cluarto. Item, I give unto my son, Basil Bartow, his 
heirs and assigns forever, all my tract of land in the County of Middlesex, in East 
New Jersey, on South River, being four hundred and fifty acres, and sixty acres 
of salt meadow in the round about meadow, also two-eighths of a moyety of a 
sixteenth part of a twenty-fourth part of a propriety in East New Jersey, granted 
by Gowen Drummond to John Read, senr., and by him to me, also my tract of 
Indian purchase land, called Price Hill, and a new English Bible in duarto. Item, 
I give all my lands, buildings, and meadows, and the twenty-five pounds priviledge 
hereby granted, to my wife during her natural life ; from and after her decease, to 
my six sons, Thomas, Theophilus, Theodosius, John, Anthony, and Basil, to be 
divided equally between, for the use of them and their several heirs and assigns 
forever. Item, I give all my other English books equally between my wife and 
my six sons aforesaid, each of them to have an equal part. I tem, I hereby will 
and order, that if one or more of my sons should depart this life and leave no law- 
ful begotten issue, that the lands, the meadows, and all other the premises hereby 
given unto such son or sons, shall be equally divided between my other sons, and 
the issue of such ol them as may be deceased ; that is to say, I will that the law- 
ful issue of any of my sons which may be de'ed, shall inherit in the! stead of their 
de'ed Father one equal part among them, (if more than one) with my surviving 
son or sons of such estate or estates as I have hereby given unto such son or sons 
as may and shall dye under age, and without lawful begotten issue as aforesaid. 
Item, I hereby order, that whereas one James Miller, lays claim to some part of my 
lands and meadows in East New Jersey, and that the said Miller has proposed to 
convey unto me all his right and title whatsoever, of, in and to all and any part of 
my said lands and meadows, on consideration of my pay ing unto him one hundred 
pounds. Proclamation money: if the agreement be not compleated before my de- 
cease, my ex'tors shall, upon the said James Miller, or his heirs, or any others by 
him lawfully authorized, executing sufficient deeds in the law for all the right 
title and demand of him the said James Miller, his heirs or assigns, of, in, or to 
all or any of my lands, meadows, and rights in the Province of East Ifew Jersey, 
by which deeds the same shall be confirmed pursuant and agreeable to this my 
last will and testament : and for, and to the use and uses of such of my children to 
whom I have given the same, pay unto the said James Miller, his heirs, ex'tors, 
adm'rs, or assigns, one hundred pounds proclamation money, to be raised out of 
my personal estate. Lastly, I hereby nominate and appoint my beloved wife, and 
William Porster, of Westchester aforesaid, to be ex'tors of this my last will and 

In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and seal, the day and year 



Signed, sealed, published, pronounced and declared by the said John Bartow, 
to be his last will and testament, in the presence of / 

Tho. Hadden, 
Will. Thompson, & 
Daniel Tcbnek. 

Mr. Bartow was succeeded in 1727 by the 


a native of Taunton, Somersetshire, England, and descended 
from an ancient family of that name, formerly seated at White- 
hill, in Oxfordshire.!! He appears to have been brought up as 
a physician, but changed his profession and entered the ministry. 
In 1725 he was appointed by order of the Tenerable Society, 
their missionary at Brookhaven, upon Long Island. From his 
first letter to the Secretary of that body, we take the following 
■ extract :— " October 5th, 1725, — It is with satisfaction on all sides, 
yt I can now tell you that I am safely arrived at New- York : a 
country both pleasant and plentiful, where I landed the 10th of 
the last month, and where I believe I shall take up my abode 
for the poor remainder of my life ; and let me add, that it is a 
pity that some clergymen who are starving at home, and who, 
to my knowledge, have sometimes been so hard put to it, as not 
to be able to tell where to get a Sunday's dinner for themselves 
and family ; should show so much unwillingness to transplant 
themselves to our plantations, where their ministrations are so 
much wanted ; and where there is a people speaking their own 
language, and who are ready to receive them with all marks of 
respect and affection, even here in York, which I take to have a 
serene and healthful air above any other of the plantations. — 
P. S. October 19th — I am now at the City of New- York, where 
I am collecting, among the church friends, for the building of a 
church at Brookhaven, (fee. — Designing to set up catechising in 
my parish, I have borrowed a few catechisms of Mr. Wetmore, 

» The arms of this family were : — vert, an arrow, in pale, or, feathered and head- 
ed arg.— Crest, a cubit arm, erect, vert, cuffed arg, holding in the hand ppr, a 
bow, strung 


<fcc. : I hope the next time you will put me into a condition to 
repay the same.''^- 

October, 1726, he writes to the Secretary, thus :— " Rev. sir,— 
I humbly beg you would use your interest for me with the Honor- 
able Society, for my remove to Westchester, and that the person 
assigned for Westchester, (if any such there be) may be ordered 
hither : such a remove would be a very great favour to me in my 
present circumstances, in that Westchester is between four or 
fire hours ride from York, where I may be abundantly supplyed 
with any convenience of life."i» 

The following mandate was issued by his Excellency, Wil- 
liam Burnet, on the 8th of July, 1727 : — 


WiLHELMtrs Burnet Armiger Provincise Novi Eboraci, necnon Novae Csesarise 
in America Strategus et Imperator ejusdemque Vice Admiralis, &c. 

Unitersis et Singulis Clericis et Ministris Ecclesiae Anglicanse quibuscumque 
in et per totam Provinciam Novi Eboraci Ubilibet Constitutis Sive iEdilibus 
Ecclesiae Parochialis de Estria Occidentalis in Comitatu Estrioe Occidentalis infira 
provinciam predictam prolix Tempore Salutem Cum dilectum in Christo Thoma 
Standard Clericum ad rectoriam sive Eccle'siam parochialem predict EstriEe Oc- 
cidenfalis in Comitatu in dicta Provincise Novi Eboraci in America, Jam vacan- 
tem Ipsium que prcesentatum Rectorem Ejusdem Rectoriae Sive EcclesiEe paro- 
chialis in et de Eadem Admissam Vosia Conjuuctim et Divisim Comitto et 
firmiter injungendo mando, dualtenus Eundem Thoma Standard Clericum Sive 
procuratorem suum Legitimum Ejus Nomine et pro se in Realem Actualem Cor- 
poralem possessionem Ipsius Rectorise et Ecclesiae parochialis de Estriae Occiden- 
tali predict. Glebarium, Juriumque: et pertinentium Suorum Univer sorem. 
Conferatis Inducatis Inducive faciatis et Inductum defendalis et quid in premissis 
feceritis me aut alium Judicem in hac parte Competentem quemcumque ; debite 
(cum ad id congrue fueritis requisiti certificetis seu sic certificet ille vestrum qui) 
prcesens hoc mandatum fuerit executus. Datum sub sigillo prerogativae dictae 
Provinciae Novi Eboraci viii, die Junii Anno Salutis MDCCXXVII. 

By His Excellency's Command. 

J«. BoEiK, D. Seo'ry.i 

' Hawks' New- York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. 668, 671. 
i- Hawks' New-York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. i, 674. 
' Albany deed book, lii. p. 160. 

,3 7 


2 8 




In his report for 1728, Mr. Standard says : — " That he preaches 
one Sunday at Eastchester and another at Westchester, twice a 
day, for the summer half year, and that he catechises the chil- 
dren publickly at Eastchester : and has baptized since he came 
to Westchester, about fifty children, besides two grown persons ; 
and that the number of his communicants are about thirty."* 

" At a meeting of the trustees and freeholders of the borough 
town of Westchester, held the 14th of March, 1729, present, Miles 
Oakley, president, and Thomas Hadden, Nathaniel Underbill, 
Underbill Barnes, Thomas Baxter, John Palmer, Thomas Hunt, 
Joseph Hunt, and James Baxter, trustees : — ordered, that Na- 
thaniel Underbill, treasurer, pay Ebenezer Haviland, 

For a spindle for the church, .... 
To Justice Hadden, for lath and service done, 
To Captain Oakley for service done, . 
Allowed the treasurer for four white oak plank, ) 

Carting ditto, and for the weathercock, S 

To Wm. Oakley for bringing the weathercock from 

New- York, 3 

To Israel Honeywell for 4500 shingles and carting : 

and paid for mending the windows. 
To Mr. Gillaim for work -done above his articles, 
To Mr. Gillaim for work as per articles, 
To expenses at making' the agreement. 
To Mr. Barnett, expenses at this meeting, . 
To Jeremiah Fowler's expenses, 

Total,"b £73 7 9 

" At a meeting of the trustees, &c., had on the 6th day of May, 
A. D. 1729, present Miles Oakley, president, John Palmer, Thom- 
as Baxter, Joseph Hunt, Thomas Hadden, Thomas Hunt, Na- 
thaniel Underbill, John Cromwell, Underbill Barnes, and Miles 
Oakley, jr., trustees ; pursuant to an act, of general assembly of 

* Printed abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 
b Westchester Town Rec. vol. ix. 313. 











this province, passed in the tenth year of the reign of our late 
sovereign lord, King William the Third, of glorious memory, 
entitled an act to enable the respective towns in this province to 
build and repair their meeting houses and other publick build- 
ings : — Resolved, nemine contra dicente, that the sum of £70 
shall be raised, and also the collection for the same sum, for the 
repairing St. Peter's Church in said Westchester, and for no 
other use, and that they will make a rate accordingly, agreeable 
to ye next assessments to be made and taken of the town sworn 
assessors, and that they will meet on ye 22d inst., to agree with 
workmen for that purpose." ^ 

At a subsequent meeting of the trustees, " £16 was ordered to 
be raised to finish the seats of the church, secure the frame, and 
to pay off the arrears, the seats to be made with backs, including 
the collector's fees : and Underbill Barnes, and Thomas Hunt, 
are appointed overseers of the work, and to employ workmen. 
It was further ordered that a warrant be issued for raising said 
money according to law, to be paid at ye same time with the 
county tax. Also ordered, that the overseers now chosen require 
Henry Gillaim to compleat his work, especially the front of the 
gallery, and to make it secure and substantial.''^ 


Westchester, Nov. 5, 1729. 

Rev. Sir : 

" The difficulty of the undertaking has hitherto discouraged 
me from attempting an answer to the letter of enquiries which 
was sent me long ago ; but am resolved to send you the best ac- 
count I can with relation to those heads of enquiry you were 
pleased to send me. 

As to the first, in my parish are three churches, the first of 
Westchester in the town so called, deemed the mother church, in 
that the presentation from the Governour runs thus : — 

» Westchester Town Rec. vol. ix. p. 206. 
>> Ibid vol. ix. 213. 


'To the rector yofWestchester, the glebe thereof, and to all the 
rights and appurtenances of the same : in which is supposed to be 
included the church of Eastchester, which my predecessor died 
possessed of.' 

The church of Westchester is a square of twenty-eight foot 
of a side, about eighteen feet to the eaves, and near of the same 
dimensions and form as the church of Eastchester, save that the 
church of Westchester hath a sort of cupulo in which is hung a 
bell, so that the whole resembles much our pigeon houses in' 

The churches both of East and Westchester,.and indeed most 
of the buildings of this county, are made after the following man- 
ner, viz : they make a frame of certain dimensions which they 
rais e by piecemeal ; first, placing the under post upon stones 
placed here and there to support it, when the whole frame is 
put together they fill up the vacancies under the said frame, 
which they call underpining, then they raise the top part or roof 
in like manner as we do with rafters, applying upon them laths, 
and upon them they nail some split wood, commonly cedar, that 
being the most in esteem, of about half an inch thick, and half 
a foot wide, and sometimes two, sometimes three foot long, ac- 
cording to the intention of the builder, of being either more sa- 
ving in charge, or more secure against the weather. The wall 
part is likewise covered with laths, and upon them are nailed, 
as on the roof, split wood which they call shingles, and they are 
placed perpendicularly, but then not so thickly placed one by 
the other as on the roof, where they resemble our tiles. 

The Church of Westchester was built by the Quakers, (who 
were the first settlers in this place, and are still the most numer- 
ous party in and about it, and indeed the whole parish, as to their 
manners, are somewhat Quakerish) and by them was given to 
Colonel Heathcote, for the use and service of the Church of En- 
gland. ^^ 

* These statements are certainly incorrect ; for we have shown, 1st, that the early 
inhabitants were Puritan Independents ; 2d, the church was built by a public tax, 
levied on all the inhabitants ; and 3rdly, all public property became vested in the 
church established|by law. Editor. 


The church is endowed with thirty acres of land at £3 per 
annum, besides which the minister hath a salary of £50 of this 
currency, raised yearly by virtue of an act of Assembly, of and 
for this Province. The second church is that of Eastchester, 
built by the Independants, and by them delivered up to Mr. 
Bartow, who was formerly inducted into the same, and kept 
quiet possession of it all his time, permitting the Independants 
sometimes to assemble in it. 

The third, is New Rochelle, where Mr. Stoup officiates, and 
where a certain number of the French nation have divine ser- 
vice"according to the form and manner of the Church of England, 
but the greatest number of that nation flock to a meeting house 
of their own erecting, who are particularly fond on the Mahom- 
etan doctrine of absolute decrees, as the Dutch likewise of this 
country are, who, where they have no minister of their" own, 
will establish a reader in order to hinder their people from as- 
sembling with the English. 

To the second enquiry, I answer, that the number of those 
well affected to the Church of England, were not above three 
or four families at the utmost, those that now frequent the church 
at West and Eastchester in the summer-time, and especially at 
the afternoon service, are about one hundred, but in the winter, 
not half that number, though the number of inhabitants in my 
parish are computed to be about six thousand. Their employments 
is husbandry, even innkeepers, shopkeepers, smiths, and shoe- 
makers not excepted ; so that we pray, pay and wait too, for 
everything done in this country. 

As to their religion, those who first settled in Westchester 
town, some were Q,uakers, those in Eastchester were New En- 
gland Independants, who were in love with extemporary prayers, 
and who remain so in some degree after they are reconciled to 
our church, so that the chief hope of making proselytes, lyes 
amongst the younger sort, and in order to this, I believe the 
reading of some of our defences to the objections of the Dissent- 
ers particularly, and especially the London cases abridged by 
Bennet, would be of singular use. 

As the people of this country are all farmers, they are dis- 
persed up and down the country : and even in towns, every one 


has a plott of at least ten acres, which distances his neighbour 
from him, but then they make up for the rareness of their build- 
ings by enlarging the compass of their towns, in that they gene- 
rally make their townships many miles in length, it may be 
twenty or thirty. 

In my parish are two meeting houses, one of which is of 
Quakers, built within a stone throw of the Church of West- 
chester, and is indeed a better building than that. The other 
is at New Rochelle. The Church of Eastchester is about four 
miles east of that of Westchester, and the Church of New Ro- 
chelle is about four miles east of Eastchester. In New Rochelle, 
besides the church, there is a meeting house of French Protest- 
ant Dissenters ; no such meeting house being in Eastchester, 
they supply that want by an intrusion into the church : to which 
they plead a right, as being the chief builders thereof. But 1 
being legally presented and inducted, as was likewise my pre- 
decessor, I laid claim to it as my own proper right, exclusive of 
them ; and so kept them out of it for a time, but they but rarely 
meeting in it, and threatening a law suit, I permitted them to do 
as they Had done in my predecessor's time : being somewhat at.a 
loss how to behave in that affair ; I should be glad to have the 
Society's direction therein. 

" In the winter time we have severely cold weather, with very 
hard frost and deep snows, which hold us at least four months, 
beginning generally about the middle of November, and ending 
about the middle of March; but we have very cold winds some- 
time before, and likewise sometime after the time aforesaid, so 
that we reckon, six months of cold and six months of hot weath- 
er, four of these being extremely cold, and four extremely hot. 
It is the business of the summer here, to provide for the winter, 
by which means few of our farmers rise, or are so much as be- 
forehand with the world : but the far greatest number are in- 
volved in debts and difficulties by means of the intemperature 
of the climate, and the indolence and restiveness of the inhabi- 
tants, but few here improve in their fortunes, so that for ought 
I could hitherto learn by any observation I could make in my 
parish, the number of those that die in it exceeds not the num 
ber of those that run out of it. 


To the third head of enquiry I answer, that there are three 
meeting houses in my parish, one of the Quakers of Westchester, 
one of the Dutch, from it three miles west, and one of the French 
at New Rochelle. The Dutch Church has no settled teacher, but 
is supplyed once a quarter from New- York, at other times it is 
supplied only by a reader. The duakers preach against hierling 
priests, and pretend to give nothing to their teachers. The other 
Dissenters support their teachers by a free contribution raised 
amongst themselves. 

To the fourth head of enquiry, I say, there are three schools 
and three schoolmasters. The first school is at Westchester, 
William Forester, master, who has a salary from the Venerable 
Society, whom we have the honor to serve. The second is at 
Eastchester, one Delpech master, who is very well adapted and 
fitted for that business, and is well spoken of as being diligent 
in it : the third is at New Rochelle, where both French and 
■ English are taught. The two last have no other encouragement 
than what the parents of the children taught, do give. 

To the fifth, there have been no donations that I know of, 
made either to the Church of West or Eastchester, nor any ben- 
efaction to the.minister or schoolmaster of either place, nor is 
there any Library belonging to either ch,urch, save a few books 
Mrs. Bartow delivered to me. 

To the sixth and last head of the enquiry, I answer, that in 
the Township of Westchester, there are seventy-five, in that of 
Eastchester, twenty-six, but few of these negroes are in the ser- 
vice of those belonging to our church ; and then farther, the 
state of the negroes being servitude and bondage, all the week 
they are held to hard work, but only Sunday's excepted, when 
they fish or fowl or some other way provide for themselves. Their 
scattered position up and down the country some distance from 
the church, but have all the prejudices of the masters conceiving 
the worse for being taught, and more apt to rebel, (an unhappy 
instance of which we had fourteen or fifteen years ago, in the 
City of New- York, when and where there was an insurrection 
of the negroes in which several white people were destroyed, 
and it was observed, that the Catechumens of that kind or the 
most instructed of the negroes were the very leaders in that in- 


surrection,a) are almost an invincible bar to their christian in- 

But 1 had almost forgot one thing, which, however, is of great 
moment in this case, and it is that few of them are capable of 
being instructed. I have now two negroes, since marriage, one 
of which is a girl about nine years old, whom I have had above 
twelve months, and have during that time several times attempt- 
ed to teach her to read, but cannot yet make her know her al- 
phabet ; nor have any endeavours hitherto used with her, which 
have not been inconsiderable ; been sufficient to make her num- 
ber ten, tho' she was born in this country : nor can a fellow that 
is at least twenty, whom I have lately bought, tho' he has been 
seven years in this country, count up that number, but notwith- 
standing what hath been said, I hope so far to initiate them in 
the christian religion as to fit them for baptism. 

I have, in obedience to our principals, publickly exhorted 
those that have negroes to instruct them in the principles of the 
christian religion, -and have offered my assistance therein, but 
hitherto with little success. I hope I shall succeed better in 
some future attempt. 

It is, I am sensible, expected that I should acquaint the 
Honorable Society with my labours and the success of them, I 
preach one Sunday at Westchester, another at Eastchester, and 
this I do twice a day for one half year, but then during the 
season, (i. e.) when the days are short and weather cold, and the 
people are obliged in the morning to attend their cattle, we have 
divine service but once, and that is about the middle of the day. 
I catechize the children in the public church at Eastchester, and 
have moved for '^it at Westchester, but have not yet succeeded, 
the master there not encouraging of it. 

» The " negro plot" of April, 1713. " The useful course of Mr. Neau's labours, 
(says Dr. Hawkins) was temporarily interrupted in 1712, by an insurrection of 
the negroes in the city of New- York. This, though soon put down, created a 
strong prejudice against the school, which the masters, who were for the most part 
averse to their being instructed, well knew how to turn to an account. There was 
no ground for it, however ; as it appeared on the trial that but one of all Mr. Neau's 
scholars, and that one unbaptized, had any connexion in the plot." Note inserted 
by Editor, 


Since I came here, I have baptized about fifty children, besides 
two grown persons. The number of our communicants are 
about thirty. You were pleased to tell me that the people of 
Setaucot, besides the allowance from tlie Society, would do 
something among and of themselves, but nothing being hitherto 
done, I desire if any subscription were by them sent to the So- 
ciety, and such I am told was sent ; that you would commu- 
nicate them to me, and in so doing you will much oblige. 

Rev. Sir, 

Your very humble servant, 
Thomas Standard."* 

In the spring of 1735 occurred an unhappy difference between 
the Rev. Thos. Standard and Mr. Porster, the Society's school- 
master. It appears, from a letter of Governor Cosby's to the 
Bishop of London; that when Mr.Vesey, the Commissary, "was 
last at Westchester, (30th of June, 1735) to enquire into this af- 
fair ; a complaint was exhibited inform against Mr. Standard, by 
the principal men of his congregation :"i> to which Mr. Stand- 
ard gave in his answer, on the 8th of October following, "to- 
gether with certain testimonials and affidavits which he judged 
necessary to his vindication."'^ In transmitting copies of these 
proceedings, upon the 20th of October, 1735, to the Bishop of 
London, and through him to the Venerable Society, Mr. Vesey 
observes : — " I have not as yet served Mr. Standard's accusers 
with a copy of his answer to their charges against him, nor ex- 
amined into the truth of the allegations ; being determined to 
proceed no farther in a matter of this consequence, without my 
Lord's and the Hon. Society's express order and directions, as 
also hoping that they will be pleased favorably to accept his 
answer, seeing he has promised to reform himself and pursue the 
great end and design of his mission with more care and diligence 
for the time to come."" Here the matter seems, fortunately for 
both parties, to have ended, as no further proceedings were taken : 

• Hawks' M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 26 to 35. 
•> Ibid vol. ii. 80, 81. 
« Ibid vol. ii. 76, 77. 


and the Society still continued Mr. Standard's services at West- 

In 1743, Mr. Standard acquaints the Society, "that notwith- 
standing the country swarmed with vagrant preachers, called 
New Lights, he had a more numerous congregation than usual, 
the Lord's day preceding."* 

" Upon the earnest petition of the churchwardens and vestry- 
men of St. Peter's Church, Westchester, the Propagation So- 
ciety appointed Mr. Basil Bartow, school-master of the parish in 
1744." The King's Commissary transmitted the following ac- 
count of this individual : — " that he is son to the Rev. John Bar- 
tow, late the Society's worthy missionary there. He is a person 
of good temper, sober, and pious, and well affected to the present 
government ; conformable to the doctrine and discipline of the 
church, and exceedingly well qualified for the instruction of 

The Society's abstracts for 1745, say : — " Letters from New- 
York bring an account that the Churches of East and West- 
chester, under the care of Mr. Standard, are in a peaceable and 
growing state."'' 

The following notice of Mr. Standard's death, and the ap- 
pointment of his successor, appears in the abstracts for 1760 : — 
" The Society being informed by a letter from the churchwar- 
dens of Westchester, dated August the first, 1760, that the Rev. • 
Mr. Standard, their Missionary, was dead ; and that for some 
time before his death he had been incapable, through his great 
age, of performing his oflBce in the church of which he had been 
the incumbent, more than thirty-four years ; and they earnestly 
praying for a worthy successor to him, that might collect the 
congregation, then scattered as sheep having no shepherd ; the 
society have granted their petition, by the appointnient of the 
Rev. Mr. Milner, a native of that Province, and son of a gentle- 
man of the City of New- York, to the mission of Westchester : he 
coming over from thence recommended to the Society by the 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. froma743 to 1744. 
» Ibid from 1744 to 1745. 

• Ibid. 



Rev. Dr. Johnson, President of the College, and by the Rev. Dr. 
Barclay, Rector of the Church of New-York ; and being found 
worthy of, admitted into Deacon's and Priest's orders in our 
church ; and he now is on his voyage to Westchester, where the 
Sociely have good hopes he will answer the good character trans- 
mitted to them of him, and both by doctrine and example pro- 
mote the knowledge and practice of the true christian religion."' 
From the date of probate of Mr. Standard's will, which gen- 
erally points out the period of the deceased's death, it is probable 
that he died at Eastchester,'' in the early part of January, 1760. 
His body lies under the communion table in St. Paul's Church ; 
but no monument marks the spot where the ashes of this ven- 
erable missionary repose. 


" In the Name op God, Amen, — I, Thomas Standard, Rector of the Parish of 
Westchester, in the Province of New- York, being far advanced in-years, but of 
sound disposing mind and memory, (thanks be to God,) do make my last will and 
testament in manner and form following : tirst and principally, I commit my pre- 
cious and immortal soul into the merciful hands of God that gave it, and my body 
to the earth, to be decently buried at the discretion of my executors, hereinafter 
named, nothing doubting but I shall be raised again by the mighty power of God 
to a Glorious Resurrection thro' Jesus Christ my Blessed Saviour and Redeem- 
er ; and as touching my worldly estate, I do dispose thereof, as follows : my Will 
is, that all my just debts and funeral charges be duly paid and satisfied in some 
convenient time after my decease. I give and grant unto my executors hereinai'- 
ter named, full power and authority to sell and dispose of all my real estate what- 
soever and wheresoever, at vendue or otherwise, as they shall think fitt, and to 
make and execute good and sufficient deeds and conveyances in the law to the 
purchasor or purchasors thereof; I likewise give them power, and order them, my 
executors, to sell and dispose of all my moveable and personal estate whatsoever 
and wheresoever, and the raonys arrising from the sale of my said-real and per- 
sonal estate, together with all the monys I shall leave at my decease, either in my 
house, or that shall be due to me on bond or otherwise, I order to be disposed of as 
follows : and I do give and bequeath the same unto and amongst my nephews and 

neices, namely, Thomas Standard, of London, barber, son of my brother 

and to George Standard and Mary Standard, children of my brother, James Stand- 
ard, late of Taunton, in Somersetshire, in Old England, dec'd, and to William 

• Printed Abstracts of the Ven. Prop., Soc. from 15 Feb., 1760, to 20 Feb. 1761. 

^ The property .opposite the present Church, upon which Mr. Standard resided 
at the time of ihisdeath, was sold by Andrew Clements, one of his executors, and 
now belongs to John Alstyne, Esq. — Editor. 


Burridge and Sarah Burridge, children of my sister, Sarah Burridge the wife ol 
William Burridge, of Taunton aforesaid, eqiially to be devided amongst them, 
share and share alike, each an equal part of all and singular my said estate, and 
in case either of my said nephews or neices should happen to die before the dis- 
tribution of my said estate, leaving no lawfull issue, then I order the share of him 
or her so dying, to be equally divided amongst the surviving legatees before 
named, but if those so dying shall leave lawfull issue, then I will that the i^sue of 
such legatee so dying, shall have the share of their dec'd father or mother. Last- 
ly, I NOMINATE, constitute, and appoint my trusty friends, James Bernard and An- 
drew Clements, both of Eastchester, in the Province of New- York, gent's, execu- 
tors of this my last will and testament, hereby making void all former wills by me 
made, declaring this only to be my last will and testament. 

Ik Tkstimiiny whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and seal in Eastchester, 
the first day of February, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and 


Signed, sealed, published and declared by the said Thomas Standard, as and for 
his last Will and Testament, in the presence of us, who subscribe our names as 
-witnesses thereto, in the testator's presence. 

Thomas Butler, 
Charles Vincent, 
Lewis Goion, 
Jno. Bartow." 

" I, Thomas Standard, before named, do hereby further declare, that notwithstand- 
ing I have given all my estate unto my nephews and neices, to witt : — Thomas 
Standard, of London, barber, George Standard and Mary Standard, William Bur- 
ridge and Sarah Burridge, by the foregoing will, yet it is my will, and I do order 
and direct my executors before named, to pay to the heirs of William Jesse, of 
Westhaloh, near Taunton, the sum of forty pounds, sterling money of Great Bri- 
tain, before they make a distribution of my said estate amongst my nephews and 
neices before named : and I do order this codicil to be a part of my will, and to be 
of the same force and eifect as if the same had been inserted in the body of the 

In Testimony whereof, I have hereto set my hand and seal, this fifth day of 
May, iu the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fifty-eight. 


Signed, sealed, published and declared by the said Thomas Standard, as and for 

a codicil, in the presence of us who subscribe our names as evidences thertof, in 

the testator's presence. 

Jno. Bartow, 

Charles Vincent, , 

Lewis Gcion, 

Thomas Butler."' 

» Transcribed from a true copy, examined with the original, by P. Banyar, D. 
Sec. Date of Probate, 26th Jan., 1760, Surrogates office, N. Y. Vol. iji. 496. 


The state of the parish, about eleven months after Mr. Stand- 
ard's death, is thus described by the Rev. Dr. Barclay, in a let- 
ter to the Secretary, from which we take the following : — 



New- York, Dec. Wth, 1760. 

" Westchester and Ri/e continue still vacant. Religion is at 
the lowest ebb in yt country, and unless some zealous and dis- 
crete clergyman be appointed to those missions, the very term of 
it will soon disappear — as Westchester is a wide extended 
county, three missionaries can find more than sufficient employ- 
ment, and I know of no place where they can be more service- 
able, provided they have the interest of religion at heart."* 

From the following passage, in the life of Samuel Johnson, 
D. D., by Dr. Chandler, it appears that as early as 1755, the So- 
ciety had provided an assistant and successor to Mr. Standard, 
in the person of Mr. William Johnson, a younger son of the Doc- 
tor's, but unfortunately their plans were frustrated by his early 
death. "Mr. William Johnson embarked for England, Novem- 
ber the 8th, 1755, with a view of returning in Holy orders, to 
assist and succeed Mr. Standard, the superannuated missionary 
at Westchester. He was received by the Society, by the Bishops 
Sherlock and Seeker, and all the Doctor's friends, with great af- 
fection. They recommended him to the University of Oxford, 
fof the degree of Master of Arts, which was readily conferred 
upon him, in the month of May, and soon after to the Univer- 
sity of Cambridge, where he was]admitted ad eundem. He had 
received holy orders in March, and had preached several limes 
in and about London, with great reputation. But soon after his 
return from Cambridge, he was seized with the small-pox, which 
proTed fatal to him on the 20th of June, 1756. He was buried 
in Mr. Morley's vault, in St. Mildred's in the Poultry, where 
there is a handsome marble monument erected to his memory. 

■ New- York M. S. S. from archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 282. (Hawks'.) 


Thus to the inexpressible grief and disappointment of his friends, 
and to the great loss of the church in America, was this amiable 
and promising youth cut oflF, in the bloom of life, making the 
seventh of those, who in their voyage to England, for Holy orders, 
from the northern colonies, had perished by sundry kinds of 
death." a 

Upon the 25th of February, 1761, the 


was licensed as a Missionary, to the Province of New-York, by 
the Bishop of London. He was the son of Nathaniel Milner, of 
New- York, a descendant of the Mylners, or Milners,of Pugesey, 
in Yorkshire.'' One of the early pioneers of the family in this 
country, was Michael Milner, of Lynn, Mass., who removed to 
Long Island, in 1640.o Mr. Milner was born in this county 
circ. 1738,* and graduated at Princeton College, New Jersey, in 
175h.* In 1760 he went to England for Holy orders, and the 
same year was ordained Deacon and Priest, by Bishop Sherlock. 
He embarked for his mission sometime in March, 1761, and ar- 
rived home, after a long and tedious passage, on the 13th of May, 
following. Upon the 12th of June, of that year, he was institu- 
ted and inducted Rector of the Parish, by Lieutenant Governour 
Golden, in the following manner : — 


I, Cadwallader Golden, Esq., President of his Majesty's Council, and Com- 

mander-in-Ghief of the Province of New- York, and the Territories depending 

* Life of Samuel Johnson, D. D., by Thomas Bradbury Chandler, D. D., for- 
merly Rector of St. John's Church, Elizabethtown, N. J. p. 96. 

' The arms of John Mylner, Lord of the Manor of Pugesey, were : — sable, three 
bridle bits or. Crest, a bridle bit or. see Berry's Genealogies of Kent. 
» Farmer's Register. 

* "Mr. Milner was a native of Westchester Colony, his father residing in 
N. Y." Fowler's M. S. S., B. iil. 573. B. v. p. 965. 

* List of Princeton Graduates. 


thereon in America ; do, in pursuance of the power devolved on me, collate, in- 
stitute and establish you, John Milner, Clerk, Rector of the Parish Church at 
Westchester, commonly called St. Peter's Church, including the several districts 
of Westchester, Eastchester, Youkers, and the Manor of Pelham, in the County 
of Westchester, within this government, to have the care of the souls of the par- 
ishioners of the said church and district aforesaid, and to take your cure and 

Given under my hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, 
at Fort George, in the City oi New- York, the thirteenth day of June, one thou- 
sand seven hundred and sixty-one. 



The Honorable Cadwallader Golden, Esquire, President of his Majesty's Coun- 
cil, and Commander-in-Chief of the Province of New- York, and the Territories 
depending thereon in America : To all and singular, Rectors and Parish Ministers 
whatsoever, in the Province of New- York, or to Samuel Sneden and John Hunt, 
the present churchwardens of St. Peter's Church, at Westchester, in the county 
of Westchester, and to the vestrymen of the said church, and to each and every 
of you, Greetinq : whereas I have collated, instituted and established our beloved 
in Christ, John Milner, Clerk, to be Rector of the Parish Church at Westchester, 
commonly called St. Peter's Church, including the several districts of Westches- 
ter, Eastchester, Yonkers, and the Manor of Pelham, in the county of Westchester, 
within this government, vacant as is said by the natural death of Thomas Stand- 
ard, the last incumbent there, on the day of January, 1760, with all its rights 

and appurtenances, observing the laws and canons of right in that behalf required, 
and to be observed ; To von therefore, jointly and severally, I do commit, and 
firmly enjoining, do command each and every of you that in due manner, him, 
the said John Milner, or his lawful proctor, in his name and for him, into the real, 
actual, and corporal possession of the said Rectory and Parish Church at West- 
chester, including the districts aforesaid, and of all its rights and appurtenances 
whatsoever, you induct, or have to be inducted, and him so inducted, you do de- 
fend, and of what you shall have done in the premises thereof, you do duely cer- 
tify unto me, or other competent Judge, in that behalf, when thereunto you shall 
be duely required. 

- Given under my hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, 
at Fort George, in the City of New- York, the thirtieth day of Jtnie, in the year 
of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and sixty-one. 


• Record of Commissions, Secretary of State's Office, Albany, vol. r. 188-9. 
» Ibid. 


The Rev. Mr. Milner, the Society's Missionary at Westches- 
ter, in his letter of October 3d, 1761, acquaints the Society, "that 
after a long and dangerous passage, he arrived at his mission 
May 13th, and has ever since preached to crowL d audiences. 
His mission, he says, is of large extent, and he is obliged to at- 
tend three churches, and till Mr. Houdin came to New Rochelle, 
officiated there once a month. One of his churches is a new 
edifice, raised by the generosity of Col. Frederick Philips, who 
has given to its service a fine farm as a glebe, consisting of two 
hundred acres ; upon which he purposes to build a good house 
for a minister. Mr. Milner has baptized forty-three white in- 
fants, and four adults, twelve black children and three adults. 
His communicants are sixteen. His catechumens, he says, have 
made a laudable proficiency, by which means he hopes his com- 
municants will increase."^ 

Mr. Milner, in his letter dated June 29th, 1762, writes :— " yt 
since his arrival at his mission, which is fourteen months, he had 
baptized one hundred and fourteen, of whom forty were adults, 
viz: thirty whites and ten blacks, and had administered the 
sacrament of the Lord's Supper four times, to thirty communi- 
cants, of which he hopes the number will increase. He con- 
stantly attends three churches in three different townships, 
preaching to crowded audiences of devout, well-behaved people. 
They have no dissentets among them, except a few Quakers. 
He adds, that the school is still vacant, and deprived of a teach- 
er, but petitions the Society to continue their bounty to some 
worthy person who shall be chosen schoolmaster ; as the school 
is a nursery for the church, and of great service in these parts, 
which request is accordingly granted."!" 

In a letter dated June the 4th, 1763, Mr. Milner "expresses 
his own and his people's sense of the favour done them in giv- 
ing them leave to choose a schoolmaster for this place, tho'they 
have not yet been able to find a person properly qualified for 
that office. He likewise informs the society that he has pro- 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc, for 176^-3-4-5-6-7-8, p. 5t. The 
New- York Post Boy of May 7, 1761, says :— " the Rev. Mr. Milner has arrived 
from London in the Ship Oliver." 

* Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Society, for 1763. 


cured a charter for St. Peter's Church, which will greatly promote 
the interests of virtue and religion, and that his people have 
purchased a house, with a glebe of thirty acres, not far from the 
church. From June 29, 1762, to the date of this letter, he has 
baptized eighty infants, among whom were three blacks, and 
seven adults ; one of them a man near sixty years old, who is 
since admitted to full communion. The number of his commu- 
nicants is increased to fifty-three, above forty have been added 
since his arrival at his mission, which was about two years at 
the time of his writing."'^ 

The following petition was presented for the charter alluded 
to in the above letter : — 


The petition of the subscribers, inhabitants, of the Borough Town of Westches- 
ter, in the county of Westchester, in behalf of themselves and the rest of the in- 
habitants of the said Town, in communion of the Church of England, as by law 
established ; 

Humbly Shewkth: 

That for many years past there has been a church in the said town of West- 
chester for the administration of Divine Service according to the use of the 
Church of England, as by law established, but that for want of proper persons to 
superintend the aifairs and interests of the same with legal authority ; the building 
is now considerably out of repair, and pious and well disposed persons are dis- 
couraged in their designs of contributing to, and establishing proper funds for the 
support of the said church and the minister thereof ; for remedying which, 

Your Petitioners humbly pray that your honour will be favourably pleased to 
grant unto them his Majesty's Letters Patent, constituting y 'ui Petitioners, or 
such of them as shall be thought proper, a Body Politic and Corporate, for the pur- 
poses of conducting and managing the affairs and interests of the said church in 
such manner and form, and with such rights, priviledges and immunities, as were 
heretofore granted to the inhabitants of the town of Flushing, in Glueen's County, 
in communion of the Church of England, or with such other rights, priviledges, 
and immunities, as shall be thought reasonable and proper; and your petitioners, 
shall ever pray. 

John Milner, Peter Db Lancet, 

John Baktow, N. TJnderhill, 

J. WiLLETT, James Graham, 

Lewis Morris, Jr., James V. Cortlandt.' 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. for 1763. 

' New- York Col. M. S. S. (Colden,) ] 761-2, vol. xc. Sec. of State's Office. 


On the 12th of May, 1762, the petition was read and granted 
in the following manner : — 


" George the third, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, 
king, defender of the faith, &c., to whom these presents shall cotne, greeting: 
whereas, our loving subject, the Rev. John Milner, rector of St. Peter's church, in 
the borough town of Westchester, and the county of Westchester, in our province 
of New- York, and John Bartow, Isaac Willett, Lewis Morris, jr., Peter de Lan- 
cey, Nathaniel XJnderhill, James Graham and James van Cortlandt, inhabitants 
of the said borough town of "Westchester, in communion of the Church of England, 
as by law established ; in behalf of themselves and the rest of the inhabitants of 
the said town, in communion as aforesaid, by their humble petition, presented on 
the twelfth day of May last, to our trusty and well beloved Cadwallader Golden, 
Esq., then our lieutenant Governour and Commander-in-chief of our Province of 
New- York, and the territories depending thereon in America ; in council did set 
forth, that for many years past there had been a church in the said town of West- 
chester, for the regular administration ot divine service according to the use of the 
church of England, as by law established, but that for the want of proper personi 
to superintend the affairs and interests of the same with legal authority, the build- 
ing was considerably out of repair, and pious and well disposed persons were dis- 
couraged in the designs of contributing to and establishing proper funds for the 
support of the said church and the minister thereof ; for remedying whereof, the said 
petitioners did humbly pray a letter patent, constituting the said petitioners, or such 
of them as shall be thought proper, a body politick and corporate, for the purpose 
of conducting and managing the affairs and interests of the said church, in such 
manner and form, and with such rights, privileges and immunities as were hereto- 
fore granted to the inhabitants of the town of Flushing, in Uueen's county, in com- 
munion of the Church of England, or with such other rights, privileges and immu- 
nities as should be thought reasonable and proper ; now, "we being willing to 
encourage the pious intentions of our said loving subjects, and to grantJhis their 
reasonable request, know ye, that of our especial grace, certain knowledge and 
mere motion, we have ordained, given, granted and declared, and by these pres-, 
ents for us, our heirs and successors, do ordain, give, grant and declare, that they 
the said petitioners, and the rest of the inhabitants of the said borough town of 
Westchester, in communion of the Church ot England, as by law established, and 
their successors, the rector and inhabitants of the said borough town of Westches- 
ter, in communion of the Church of England as by law established, hereafter shall 
be a body corporate and politic, in deed, fact and name, by the name, stile and title 
of the rector and inhabitants of the borough town of Westchester, in communion 
of the Church of England, as by law established, and them and their successdrs by 
the same name. We do by these presents, forus, our heirs and successors, really 
and fully make, erect and constitute one body politic and corporate, in deed, fact 
and name forever, and we give, grant and ordain, that they and their successors, 
the rector and inhabitants of the borough town of Westchester, in communion of 
the Church of England, as by law established, by the same name shall and may 
have perpetual successions, and shall and may be capable in law to sue and be 


sued, implead and be impleaded, answer and be answered unto, defend and be de- 
fended in all courts and elsewhere, in all manner of actions, writs, complaints, 
pleas, causes, matters and demands whatsoever, as fully and amply as any other 
our liege subjects of our said province of New- York may or can sue or be sued, 
implead or be impleaded, defend or be defended, by any lawful way or means 
whatsoever, and that they and their successors by the same name shall be forever 
hereafter capable and able in the law to purchase, take, hold, receive and enjoy any 
messuages, tenements, personal and real estate whatsoever in fee simple for the 
term of life or lives, or in any other manner howsoever for the use of the said 
church; and also any goods, chattels or personal estate whatsoever, provided al- 
ways that the clear yearly value of the said real estate (exclusive of the said 
church and the ground whereon the same is built, and the cemeteryjbelonging to 
the same,) doth not at any time exceed the sum of iive hundred pounds, current 
money oi our said province, and that they and their successors by the same name 
shall have full power and authority to give, grant, sell, leave and dispose of the 
same real estate for life or lives, or year or for ever, under certain yearly rents, 
and all goods and chattels and personal estate whatsoever, at their will and pleas- 
ure, and that it shall and may be lawful for them and their successors to have and 
use a common seal ; and our will and pleasure further is, and we do hereby for us, 
our heirs and successors, ordain and appoint, that there shall be for ever hereafter 
belonging to the said church, one rector of the Church of England as by law es- 
tablished, duly qualified for the care of souls, two churchwardens and eight ves- 
trymen, who shall conduct and manage the affairs and business of the said church, 
and confer in manner as hereafter is established and appointed, and for the more 
immediate carrying into execution our royal will and pleasure herein, we do here- 
by assign, constitute and appoint Isaac Willett and Nathaniel Underbill, the elder, 
to be the present churchwardens, and Peter de Lancey, James Graham, James 
van Cortlandt, Lewis Morris, John Smith, Theophilus Bartow, Cornelius Willett 
and Thomas Hunt, to be the present vestrymen of the said church, who shall hold, 
possess and enjoy their respective offices until Tuesday in Easter week, now next 
ensuing, and for the keeping of the succession in the said offices our royal will and 
pleasure is, and we do hereby establish, direct and require, that on the said Tues- 
day in Easter week now next ensuing, and yearly and every year thereafter, for 
ever on Tuesday in Easter week in every year, the rector and inhabitants of the 
borough town of Westchester in communion of the Church of England, as by 
law established, shall meet at the said church, and there by the majority of voices 
of such of them as shall so meet, elect and choose two of their members to be 
churchwardens, and eight others of their members to be vestrymen of the said 
church for the ensuing year, which said churchwardens and vestrymen so elected 
and chosen, shall immediately enter upon their respective offices, and hold, exer- 
cise and enjoy the same respectively, from the time of such elections for and daring 
the space of one year, and until other fit persons shall be elected and chosen in 
their respective places, and in case the churchwardens or vestrymen, or either of 
them, by these presents named and appointed, or which shall hereafter be elected 
and chosen, shall die or remove from the said borough town of Westchester, be- 
fore the time of their respective appointed services shall be expired, or refuse or 
neglect to act in the office for which he or they is or are herein nominated and 
appointed, or whereunto he or they shall or may be elected and chosen, then our 


royal will and pleasure is, and we do hereby direct and ordain and require the 
rector and inhabitants of the borough town of Westchester in communion as 
aforesaid, for the time being, to meet at the said church and choose ojher or others 
of their numbers in place and slead of him or them so dying, removing or re- 
fusing to act within thirty days next after such contingency, and in this case for 
the more due and orderly conducting the said elections, and to prevent any undue 
proceedings therein, we do hereby give full power and aulhoriiy to, and ordain 
and require that the rector and the churchwardens of the said church for the time 
being, or any two of them, shall appoint the time for such election or elections, 
and that the rector of ihe said church, or in his absence one of the churchwardens 
for the time being, shall give public notice thereof by publishing the same at the 
said church immediately after divine service, on the Sunday preceding the day 
appointed for such elections, hereby giving and granting that such person or per- 
sons as shall be chosen from time to lime by the rector and inhabitants of the said 
borough town of Westchester in communion as aforesaid, or the majority of 
such of them as shall in such case meet in manner hereby directed, shall have, 
hold, exercise and enjoy such the office or oflices to'which he or they shall be so 
elected and chosen from the lime of such election until the Tuesday in Easter 
week thence next ensuing, and until other or others be legally chosen in his or 
their place instead, as fully and amply as the person or persons in whose place 
he or they shall be chosen might or could have done by virtue of these presents, 
and we do hereby will and direct that this method shall for ever hereafter be used 
for the filling up all vacancies that shall happen in either the said offices between 
the annual elections above directed ; and our royal will and pleasure further is, 
, and we do hereby for us, our heirs and successors, give and grant that as well the 
churchwardens and vestry, or those present nominated and appointed as such, as 
shall from time to time be hereafter elected and chosen as is herein directed, shall 
have and they are hereby invested with full power and authority to execute their 
several and respective offices in as full and ample manner as any churchwardens 
or vestrymen in that part of our kingdom of Great Britian called England, or in 
this our province of New- York, can or lawfully may execute their said respective 
offices ; and further our royal will and pleasure is, and we do by these presents 
for us, our heirs and successors, give, grant, ordain and appoint, that the rector 
and churchwardens of said church for the time being, or any two of Ihem, shall 
and may from time to time as occasion shall require, summon and call together 
at such day and place as they shall think proper the said rector, churchwardens 
and vestrymen for the time being to meet in vestry, giving them at the least one 
day's notice thereof, and we hereby require them to meet accordingly, and we do 
hereby give, grant and ordain, that the said rector, and one of the said churchwar- 
dens for the time being at least, together with the majority of the said vestrymen of 
the said church, for the time being, being met in vestry as above diTected, shall for 
ever hereafter, have, and they are hereby invested with full power and authority 
by a majority of their voices to do and execute in the name of the rector and in- 
habitants of the borough town ol Westchester, in communion of the Church of 
England as by law established, all and singular powers and authorities hereinbe- 
fore given and granted to the said rector and inhabitants of the borough town of 
Westchester in communion of the church of England as by law established, any 
wise touching or relating to such lands, messuages, tenements, real aud personal 
estate whatsoever, as they the said rector and inhabitants of the borough town of 


Westchester, in communion as aforesaid, shall or may acquire for the use of the 
said church, and also in like manner to order, direct, manage, and transact the 
general interest, business and affairs of our said corporation, and also shall have 
full power and authority in like manner to make and ordain such rules, orders, 
and ordinances as Ihey shall judge convenient for the good government and dis- 
cipline of the members of said church, provided such rules, orders and ordinances 
be not repugnant to the laws of that part of our kingdom of Great Britian called 
England, or this our province of New- York, but as near as may be agreeable 
thereto, and that the same be fairly entered in a book or books to be kept for that 
purpose, and also in like manner to appoint the form of the common seal herein 
before granted, and the same to alter, break, and remake at their discretion, and 
also in like manner tc appoint such officer or officers as they shall stand in need of, 
always provided that the rector of the said church for the time being shall have the 
sole power of nominating and appointing the clerk to assist him in performing divine 
service, as also the sexton, anything herein before contained to the contrary in 
any wise notwithstanding, which clerk and seiton shall hold and enjoy their re- 
spective offices during the will and pleasure of the rector of the said church for 
the time being, and in case of any avoidance of the said church either by the 
death of the rector thereof or otherwise, then our royal will and pleasure is that 
the powers and authority hereby vested in the rector, churchwardens, and vestry- 
men, in vestry to meet as above mentioned, shall, until the said church be legally 
supplied with another incumbent, vest in and be executed by the churchwardens 
of the said church for the time being, provided always they have the concurrence 
and consent of the major number of the whole vestrymen of the said church for 
the time being, in any thing they shall in such case do by virtue hereof, and 
further we do by these presents, for us, our heirs, and successors, give and grant 
unto the rector and inhabitants of the borough town of Westchester in communion 
of the church of England as by law establisjied, and their successors forever, that 
'his our present grant shall be deemed, adjudged and construed in all cases most 
favourably and for the best benefit and advantage of the rector and inhabi- 
tants of the borough town of Westcheser in communion of the church of Eng- 
land as by law established, and that this our present grant being entered on 
record as is hereinafter particularly expressed, shall be good and effectual in the 
law to all intents, constructions and purposes whatsoever, against us, our heirs, 
and successors, according to our true interests and meaning herein before declared, 
notwithstanding the not reciting or mis-reciting, not naming or mis-naming of 
any of the aforesaid franchises, privileges, immunities, or officers, in either the 
premises or any of them, and although no writ of ad quod damnum of other writs, 
inquisitions in precept hath or have been upon this account, had, made, or prosecu- 
ted or issued, to have and to hold all and singular the privileges, liberties, ad- 
vantages, and immunities hereby granted or meant, mentioned, or intended so to 
be, unto the said rector and inhabitants of the borough town of Westchester in 
communion of the church of England as by law established, and to their succes- 
sors forever. In testimony whereof we have caused these our letters to be made 
patent, and the great seal of our said province to be hereunto affixed, and the same 
to be entered on record in our Secretary's office, in our city of New-York, in one 
of the books of patents there remaining. Witness, our trusty and well beloved 
Robt. Monckton, our captain general and governor-in-chief of our province of 
New-York and the territories depending thereon in America, vice admiral of the 


same and major-general of our forces, at our fort in our city of New- York, by and 
with the advice and consent of our governour for our said province. Second day 
of December, in the year A. D. 1762, and of our reign the third. 

Signed, CLARKE." • 
[l. s.] 

The Society's abstracts for 1764, sa};- :— '-'The Rev. Mr. Mil- 
ner, the Society's Missionary at Westchester, in his letters dated 
June Sth, and December 21st, 1764 ; acquaints the Society that 
he has, at his own expense, laid out a sum, amounting to two 
hundred pounds currency, repaired the parsonage house, built a 
new barn and out houses, (the vestry promising to reimburse 
him asisoon as their circumstances will permit,) and the people 
of Eastchester have laid the foundation of a new stone church, 
seventy-one feet by thirty-eight, in the room of a small decayed 
wooden building, erected in the infttncy of their settlement. Mr. 
Milner has, in pursuance of the powers given him by the Soci- 
ety ; appointed Mr. Nathaniel Seabury, a son of the late worthy 
missionary at Hampstead, to be school master at Westchester." 
The churchwardens of Westchester in their letter, dated July 
7th, 1764, acquaint the Society " that they have purchased a glebe 
of near thirty acres, with a house, which, when they have re. 
paid Mr. Milner the expense he has been at, will cost them, in 
the whole, near seven hundred pounds, which they spend with 
great cheerfulness, as their minister's behaviour has very much 
endeared him to the people ; and his diligence has been attend- 
ed with such success, that whole families of Quakers, the only 
dissenters in this parish, have conformed to the church. Mr. 
Milner has baptized, within the year, seventy-two whites, and 
nineteen black infants, and has fifty communicants." b 

Mr. Milner continued his services in the parish, until the fall 
of 1765, as appears by the following extract from a letter of Mr. 
John Bartow, to the Bishop of London :— 

Borough of Westchester, in the Province 
of New- York, Oct. I5th, 1765. 

" The Honourable Society's Missionary for our parish of West- 
chester has left us.— I expect the vestry of this parish will 

• Alb. Rec. Book of Patents, No. xiii. 490. 

t Printed abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. from 17th Feb. 1764, to 15lh Feb. 1765. 


soon address the Honourable Society for the continuance of their 
favours; and I beg your lordship's care and protection over us, 
and that you will assist in sending a faithful minister to reside 
here. I suppose our vestry may noaiinate, but still there may 
want inspection."'! 

For what leason Mr. Milner resigned his benefice, does not 
now very clearly appear. It is not improbable, however, that 
the large sum of money expended by him on the glebe, may have 
had some connexion with his leaving. In 1768, he was settled 
in Viigitiia, as appears from the following : — 

Newport Parish, Isle of Wight, Ftb. 3rd, 1768, 

Rev. Sir: 

" I am very sorry to inform you that the people of Westchester 
pay very little regard, either to their promises, or the Sociely's 
expectations, for 1 am informed by my lawyer that they abso- 
lutely refuse to refund me one penny of all the money I have 
expended on their glebe, which, without the repairs and build- 
ings I made, would have been entirely useless. 1 am now set- 
tled in Virginia, where the church is established in reality, and 
some certain provision made lor the clergy, &.c."i> 

Mr. Milner probably died at Newport Parish, Va.. in]775,« 
for his name appears among the deceased clergy, in " a list of 
persons licensed to the Plantations," ending Dec. 28th, 1777.* 
The Rev. Mr. Fowler, in his M. S. biographies of the clergy, 

« New-York, M. S. S., from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. 330, 332. (Hawks'.) 
' New- York, M. S. S., from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 446. (Hawks'.) 
' The Rev. H. T. Wilc.xon, the present Rector of the Parish, in a letter to the 
author, dated Smilhfield, Isle of Wight Co. Va. January 7lh, 1852, says: "The 
oldest resident (of my acquaintance) in the County, thinks he has heard of Mr. 
Milner, but can give no certain or reliable information about him." "The records 
of the Parish, for many years back, have been destroyed or lost." 
i Coll. of Prot. Epis. Hist. Soc. 1851. 


says he died in 1765, but this is evidently a mistake, as the fore- 
going letter shows. ^^ 

A vacancy of nearly a year occurred before the 


was appointed to the mission. In 1766, (says Dr. Hawkins,) 
"Mr. Seabury intimated to the Society his wish to accept the of- 
fer of the mission of Westchester, which was made to him by 
the churchwardens and vestrymen, and the Society consenting 
to his proposal, he removed thither at the end of the year 1766."'' 
Mr. Seabury was the eldest sou of the Rev. Samuel Seabury, 
a descendant of John Seaberry,": of Boston, Mass., whose family 
were originally seated at Porlake, in Devonshire, England. 

• Rev. A. Fowler, M. S. Biog. b. iii, p. 573. 

* His. Notices of the Miss, of the Church of Eng. in the North American Col- 
onies, by Ernest Hawkins, B. D. 

« " Samuel, Ihe son of John Seaberry and Grace his wife, was born lO" (11") 
1639." N. E. Hist, and Gen. Reg. vol. ii. 401. Samuel Seabury, M. D., was a no- 
ted surgeon at Duxbury, Mass., in the )7th Century. His son, John Seabury, was 
born in 1673, and died at Hempstead, L. I. Dec. 17, 1759. His son, Samuel, was 
born in 1706, and was graduated at Harvard University, in 1724. He settled at 
Groton, Conn., as a Congregational Minister, and is said to have married Abi- 
gail Mumford. From intercourse with Dr. McSparran of Narragansett, Mr. 
Seabury became an Episcopal Clergyman, and was appointed by the Society, in 
1738, the first Missionary of St. James's Church, then at New London. His 
wife died in 1731. In 1733, he married Elizabeth Powell, (she died Feb. 6, 1799, 
aged, 87,) the daughter of Adam Powell, a merchant of Newport, R. I. and 
grand-daughter of Gabriel Bernon. In 1743 he removed to Hempstead, on L. I. 
where he died June 15, 1704. The following is the inscription on his tombstone : 

" Here lyeth interred the tody of the 
Rector ot the Parish of Hempstead, 
•who with the greatest diligence and most indefatigable labour, for 13 years 
at New London, and 31 years in this Parish^ having discharged 
every duty of his sacred function, 
Died the IfMh of June, A. D. 1764, set 58. 
In gratitude to the memory of the best of husbands, his disconsolate 
widow, Elizabeth Seabury, hath placed this stone." 

His brother, Capt. . David Seabury, (remarkable for his great bodily strength,) 
died at the same place, Nov. U, 1750, aged 52, unmarried. The arms of the Sea- 
bury's, or Sedborough's, are :— ar, a fesse engr. betw. three ibexes, passant sa. 


The ancient orthography of the surname was Sed borough, until 
changed, probably, by the early pioneers of the family in this 
country. Mr. Seabury was born in Groton, Connecticut, No- 
vember 30th, 1729,a and graduated at Yale College in 1748. 
Soon after completing his collegiate education, he was appointed 
catechist by the Venerable Propagation Society, under the direc- 
tion of his father, at Huntingdon, a town about eighteen miles 
distant from Hempstead. In 1753, the Society received from 
Mr. James Wetmore, Missionary at Rye, a testimonial in favour 
of the Rev. Samuel Seabury, jun., whom he represented as " a 
man of unblemished moral character, sound learning, and so 
prudent behaviour, that he would prove a worthy missionary. 
He accordingly recommended him for the vacant cure of New 
Brunswick, in the colony of New Jersey. The Society having 
now for some years had knowledge of him in the subordinate 
office of catechist, immediately gave its sanction to his coming 
to England for holy orders."!" 

He entered on the duties of his mission at New Brunswick, in 
May, 1754, and in 1757 was promoted by the government to the 
living of Jamaica, L. 1."= 

He was admitted, instituted, and inducted rector of this parish 
by Sir Henry Moore, upon the 3d of Dec, 1766. 


I, Sib Henry Moore, Baronet, Captain General, and Governor-m-Chief, 
in and over the province of New- York, and territories depending thereon, in 

' " Samuel, son of Samuel and Abigail Seabury, was born in Groton, Nov. 
30th, 1729. Samuel, son of Samuel and Abigail Seabury, baptized 14lh Dec, 
1729, by Rev. John Owen, of Groton".— Extracts from Town Minutes, kindly 
t urnished by Miss Calkins. 

'Hawkins Missions.— The Society's abstracts for 1753, say: "The Society 
have appointed the Rev. Mr. Seabury, son of the Rev. Mr. Seabury, the So- 
ciety's Miss, at Hempstead in L. I., in the Prov. of N. Y, to be their Miss, to 
New Brunswick, out of regard to the request of the inhabitants, and to the uni- 
ted testimony of the Episcopal Clergy of New- York in his favour ; as a youth 
of good genius, unblemished morals, sound principles in religion, and one 
that had made as good proficiency in literature, while in America, as the present 
state of learning there would admit of ; and he was gone for his improvement 
to the Unversity of Edinburgh, &c., &c. 

« Some of his letters, whilst stationed at Jamaica, may be found in the 3d 
vol. of the Doc. History of N. Y. 


America, Chancellor and Vice Admiral of the same; do admit you, Samuel 
' Seabury, Clerk, to be Rector of the Parish Church of Westchester, commonly 
called St. Peter's Church, including the several districts of Westchester, East- 
chester, Yonkers, and the Manor of Pelham, in the County of Westchester, in the 
said province, with all their rights, members and appurtenances. Given under 
my hand and the prerogative seal of the province of New- York, the third 
day of December, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and 




I, Sir Henry Moore, Baronet, Captain General and Governour-in-Chief, in 
and over the province of New- York and the territories depending thereon, in Amer- 
ica, Chancellor and Vice Admiral of the same j do institute you, Samuel Seabury 
Clerk, Rector of the Parish Church at Westchester, commonly called St. Peter's 
Church, including the several districts of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, 
and tha Manor of Pelham, in the County of Westchester in tlie said prortnce, 
to have the care of souls of the parishioners of the said parish, and take your 
cure and mine. Given under my hand and the prerogative seal of the province 
of New- York, this third day qf December, in the year of our Lord one thousand 
seven hundred and sixty-six. 



His Excellencv, SirHenrv Moore, Baronet, Captain General, andGovemour 
in-Chief, in and over the province of New- York, and the territories depending 
thereon in America, Chancellor and Vice Admiral of the same, to all and sin- 
gular. Rectors and Parish Ministers whatsoever in the province of New- York, or 
to the Church Wardens and Vestrymen of Saint Peter's Church, at Westchester, 
in the county of Westchester, aud to each of you greeting. Whereas, I have 
collated, instituted and established our beloved in Christ, Samuel Seabury, Clerk, 
to be Rector of the Parish Church at Westchester, commonly called St. Peter's 
Church, including the several districts of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and 
the Manor of Pelham in the County of Westchester, within this Government, 
vacant, as is said, by the resignation of John Milner, Clerk, the last incumbent 
there, with all its rights and appurtenances, observing the laws and canons of 
right in that behalf, required and to be observed. To you, therefore, jointly and 
severally, I do commit, and firmly injoining do command each and every of yon 
that in due manner him, the said Samuel Seabury, or his lawful proctor in his 
name and for him into the real, actual and corporal possession of the said Rec- 
tory and Parish Church at Westchester, including the districts aforesaid, and o^ 
all its rights and appurtenances. Whatsoever you induct, or cause to be inducted 
and him so inducted you do defend, and of what you shaU have done in the 
premises thereof, you do duly certify unto me, or other competent judge in that 



behalf, when thereunto you shall be duly required. Given under my hand and 
the prerogative seal of the province of New- York, at Fort George, in the city of 
New- York, the third day of December, in the year of our Lord one thousand 
seveti hundred and siity-sii. 


The State of the parish, about seven months after his induc- 
tion, appears from the following report to the Society : — 


Westchester, June 25th, 1767. 

Rev'd Sir : 
" The congregation at Westchester is very unsteady in their 
attendance ; sometimes there are more than the church, which 
is a small old wooden building, can contain, at other times very 
few, generally, near two hundred. The communicants are few, 
the most I have had has been twenty-two ; two new ones have 
been added since I have been here. At Eastchester, which is 
four miles distaijt, the congregation is generally larger than at 
Westchester. The old church in which they meet, as yet, is 
very small and cold. They have erected, and just completed 
the roof of a large well-built stone church, in which they have 
expended, they say, seven hundred pounds currency ; but their 
ability seems to be exhausted', and I fear I shall never see it fin- 
, ished. I applied last winter to his Excellency Sir Henry Moore, 
for a brief in their favour, but the petition was rejected. Since 
I came into this parish I have preached every other Sunday at 
Westchester, in the morning, and have after prayers in the after- 
noon, catechised the children and explained the catechism to 
them. I was the more inclined to do this, as they have never 
been used to any evening service at all, and as there seemed to 
be but little sober sense of religion amongst the lower sort of 
people, I was in hopes by this means to lay some foundation of 

• Albany Book of Commissions, vol. v. 343. 


religious knowledge in the younger part of the congregation. I 
cannot yet boast of the number of my catechumens which is 
but ten, but most of them repeat the catechism extremely well. 
There are also a considerable number of young people who 
attend to hear, and are very attentive. I should be very much 
obliged to the Society for a number of Lewis's catechisms, and 
some small common prayer books, and such other tracts as they 
think proper ; these things presented to the children and 
younger people by their minister, I have found by my own ex- 
perience, gives them impressions in his favour, and dispose them 
to come to church and to make their responses. 

At Westchester I have baptised six white children, and one 
mulatto adult ; at Eastchester, eight white, and at New Ro- 
chelle seven white and two negro children. Before I left Ja- 
maica, I baptised there four adults and three infants. I have 
made two visits there sincfe, and baptised one adult, two white 
children and three black ones ; and I must do the people at New- 
town the justice to inform the Society, that since my removal they 
sent me £20 currency. With regard to the income of this parish ; 
the salary, by an act of Assembly, is £50 currency. The ex- 
change from N. Y. to London being generally from £70 to £80 
for £100 sterling. Burial fees there are here none, but the 
more wealthy families sometimes give the minister a linen scarf 
on these occasions. Marriage fees from one to four Spanish 
dollars ; but far the greater number go to an Independent teacher 
in the Parish of Rye, because his ceremony is short, and they 
have nothing to say. Possibly these fees may amount to £5 or 
£6 a year. The parsonage house is so much out of repair that 
it will cost £100 currency to make it comfortable, and the glebe 
has cost me near £20 to repair the fences ; when it is put in 
good order, it would, I believe, rent for £25 per annum. ^ Some 
of the principal people have been endeavoring to prevail on the 
congregation to make up the deduction from the Society's salary 
by subscription, but have not succeeded, owing to the great ex- 
pense they have been and must be at here in buying and repair- 
ing their parsonage house, for which they are. yet in debt £100, 
and to the necessity they will shortly be under of rebuilding their 
church ; and the Eastchester people are exhaus-ted by the church 


they have undertaken to build. I must defer writing concern- 
ing that part of the parish which is under Mr. Munroe's care, 
till my information is more correct. The professed Dissenters 
in this parish are not numerous ; some Calvanistic or Presbyte- 
rian French at New Rochelle, a few Presbyterians at Eastches- 
ter, and some Q,uakers ; at Westchester a good many Quakers. 
But there are many families, especially among the lower 
classes, who do not even pretend to be of any religion at all."» 

"He states that one of the means ^hich he adopted of com 
municating religious instruction to the people, was preaching at 
funerals in the more remote districts, whereby he had the op- 
portunity of addressing those who could not be brought together 
at any other time."i> 

In 1768 Mr. George Youngs<= was appointed schoolmaster at 
Westchester, in the room of Mr. Nathaniel Seabury, the rector's 

The Rev. Mr. Seabury, in his letter of October 10th, 1769, 
says: — "The people become gradually more devout, and read 
regular in the public worship. That he had taken pains with 
the negro slaves, and had baptised five adults with them. The 
school advances, and the children make a due proficiency in 

TJae following year he thus writes to the Secretary : — 

Westchester, March 29th, 1770. 

Rejv Sir : 

" The violent party heats which prevail in this Colony as well 
as in the others, engross at present, the attention of the people. 
But I thinlc yt even the disturbances will be attended with 
some advantage to the interests of the church. The useful- 
ness and truth of her doctrines with regard to civil government, 

• New- York M. S. S. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 429 to 432. (Hawks'.) 
» Hawking' Notices of the Missions of the Church of England, &c. 
« Mr Youngs continued his services here until 1772. 
' Society's Printed Abstracts. 


appear more evident from those disorders which other principles 
have led the people into. This is particularly remarked and 
publicly mentioned by the more candid and reasonable people, 
who seem heartily tired with the great clamours for liberty, (fee, 
as it appears evident yt unbounded licentiousness in manners 
and insecurity to private property, must be the unavoidable 
consequence of some late measures, should they become prev- 
alent. I hope the time is not far off when these matters will 
be settled upon a firm and permanent foundation; but how- 
ever yt may be, I am confident the behaviour of the church 
people, considered as a body, has been such as has done her 
honour, and will be remembered many years in this country 
with approbation." » Nine months after the date of this com- 
munication, we find him again addressing the Secretary, as fol- 
lows : — 



Westchester, January 3d, 1771. 
Rev. Sir ; 
" The state of this mission being much the same as when I 
last wrote, makes it unnecessary for me to say much on yt head. 
In general, I must observe, yt though I think appearances are 
something mended since I have been in this mission, yet my 
success has not been equal to my first expectations. I find it 
very difficult to convince people yt religion is a matter of any 
importance. They seem to treat it as a thing unworthy of their 
attention, except on some particular occasions, when they are 
otherwise disengaged. Many come frequently to church and 
yet continue un baptised, others come constantly and appear to 
behave devoutly, and yet cannot be prevailed upon to become 
communicants, while many others pay not the least regard to 
religion of any kind nor on any occasion. I shall, however, 
endeavour to do my duty, and I hope, by God's blessing, in due 
time, I shall see some good fruit from my labours."!' 

• New- York M. S. S. from Archives at Pulhatn, vol. ii. 505. (Hawks'.) 

* New- York M. S. S. from Archives at Palham, vol. ii. 542. (Hawks') 


During the year 1774, he had baptised forty-nine, and admit- 
ted three new communicants.^ 

In April, 1775, he signed the protest at White Plains, in which 
he and others declared their " honest abhorrence of all unlawful 
Congresses and Committees," and determination, " at the hazard 
of our lives and properties, to support the King and Constitu- 
tion ; and that we acknowledge no Representatives but the 
General Assembly, to whose wisdom and integrity we submit 
the guardianship of our rights, liberties and privileges." 

The following letter shows that some of the clergy had found 
it prudent to withdraw from the surrounding troubles and seek 
refuge in England : — 



Westchester, May 30th, 1775. 
Rev. Sir: 
" We are here in a very alarming situation. Dr. Cooper and 
Dr. Chandler have been obliged to quit this community and 
sailed for England last week.'' I have been obliged to retire' a 
few days from the threatened vengeance of the New England 
people who lately broke into this Province. But I hope I shall 
be able to keep my station. The charge against the clergy here 
is a very extraordinary one — that they have, in conjunction with 
the Society and the British Ministry, laid a plan for enslaving 
America. I do not think that those people who raised this 
calumny, believe one syllable of it ; but they intend it as an 
engine to turn the popular fury upon the church, which, should 
the violent schemes of some of our Eastern neighbours succeed) 
will probably fall a sacrifice to the persecuting spirit of Inde- 
pendency. I am, (fcc, 

Samuel Seabury."<= 

• Printed Abstracts of the Ven. Society 

■' In the old Wilkins mansion on Castle Hill Neck, Westchester, is still shown 
the place where Doctors Cooper, Chandler and Seabury managed to secrete 
themselves for some time, notwithstanding the most minute and persevering search 
was made for them ; so ingeniously contrived was the place of their concealment 
in and about the old-fashioned chimney. Food was conveyed to them through 
a trap-door in the floor. 
« New- York M. S. S. from Archives atFulham, vol. ii. 571. (Hawks.') 


The calumny against the clergy, resembles the false charge 
brought against the Episcopacy itself at this period, viz :— that 
it was " one of those causes which, as much as anything dse, 
conduced to the horrors of the revolution." It is almost need- 
less to say that both were unfounded. The real cause of the 
American Revolution was, whether the Parliament of Great 
Britain had any power or authority to tax Americans, without 
their consent. This was the foundation of the whole dispute. 
But surely the New England people had no right to complain, 
much less to invade a neighbouring province by forie, when 
they practiced upon all other c^pnominations this taxaf.ion with- 
out representation.'^ 

The following letter from Mr. Seabury to his friend Isaac 
Wilkins, Esq., (afterwatd rector of this parish,) dated May 
30th, 1775, is preserved among the papers of the Wilkins 
family : — 

My ever Dear Wilkins : 
" I hope you are safe in London ; may every blessing attend 
you. Mrs. Wilkins was well last evening. Isabella has had a 
rash, but is better. Everything here quiet. Reported that two 
thousand men are ready in Connecticut for any operation for 
which they may be wanted in this province. The Asia is 
arrived — reported that she has demanded a supply of provis- 
ions for Boston, and that it is agreed that they shall be 
furnished. The associations went on very heavily at W. O., 
very few signed. The Provincial Congress have agreed to raise 
money upon the province — as the representatives of the people. 
Mr. L. Morris has published his remarks upon the protest, (fee, 
poor me — you are safe — I think I am too. If I knew 
anything worth writing, I would write it. I think the present 

• This was precisely what the Puritans objected to in the English Parliament, 
at the very moment they were doing it themselves, and for which they revolted. 
(See Chapin's Puritanism, p. 128.) The Society's Abstracts, for 1775, say :— 
"Mr. Seabury, has been obliged to retire from his mission at Westchester, 
but has not been able to secure himself from the ill effects of the present distrac- 
tions, Mr. Gott, the schoolmaster, a very attentive man in his office, has been 
obliged to quit the school on account of ill health." 


scene will not last long. Drs. Cooper and Chandler sailed last 
week. Tell Dr. Cooper I received his letter, and I will write to 
him. When I can collect anything worthy your notice you 
shall have it. God bless you, says your ever affectionate 


The Society's abstracts for 1776, say : — " In the course of 
this year two letters have been received from the worthy Mr. 
Seabury. In the former, dated November 14th, 1775, he writes, 
that his two congregations, though less numerous, were then 
pretty steady in their attendance, and that between Christmas 
and mid-summer he had baptised twenty-seven white, and four 
black infants."* The latter gives the following account of his 
seizure and detention : — 



Westchester, January, I3th, 1776. 
Rev. Sir : 
" Since my last letter I have been seized by a company of dis- 
affected people in arms, from Connecticut, in number about one 
hundred, and carried to New Haven. This happened on the 
22d of November, and I was kept under a military guard till 
the 23d of December. The particulars of this affair I will 
send you when I find a safe opportunity. On the 2d day of 
this month I returned to my family. How long I shall be able 
to continue here is very uncertain ; but 1 am determined to stay 
as long as I am permitted to discharge the duties of my mission, 
whatever personal inconvenience it ma'y subject me to. My 
private affairs have suffered much on this occasion. I was com- 
pelled to bear my expenses, and that has not been less 
than ten pound sterling. My papers were all examined, and 
are thrown into such confusion that I can find none of my 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Society, 16 Feb. 1776, to 21st Feb. 1777. 


memoranda relating to my mission or correspondence with the 

I am, Rev. Sir, <fcc., 

Samuel Seabury."" 

This invasion of the territory of New-York, and violent 
removal of its citizens, called forth a strong remonstrance from 
the Provincial Congress^ to Governor Trumbull, who demanded 
Mr. Seabury's 'immediate discharge.' The more especially as, 
considering his ecclesiastic character, which, perhaps is vener- 
ated by many friends to liberty." The severity that has been 
used towards him may be subject to misconstructions, prejudicial 
to the common cause. Mr. Seabury was accordingly set at 
liberty and returned to his parish."* 

" In many places the clergy, (says the Rev. M. H. Henderson, 
to whdm we are indebted for the materials of this sketch,) nat- 
urally viewed with a distrustful eye in consequence of their 

' New York M. S. S. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 575, 576. (Hawks'.) 
"In 1776, says Dr. Hawkins, Mr. Seabury was seized by a party of the disaf- 
fected in arms, and carrie d off toeN Haven ; all his papers being examined for 
proof against him. After describing this outrage, he says : ' God's Providence 
Will,! hope, protect His church and clergy in this country, the disorder and con- 
fusion of which are beyond description." '— Hawkin's Missions. 

' The petition of the Rev. S. Seabury, presented to the Governor of Conn, in 
1775, for relief and protection, shows (hat he received anything but gentle treat- 
ment at the hands of his enemies. He defended himself against their charges, 
and pronounced his arrest " a high infringement of that liberty for which the sons 
of America were then so nobly struggling." Whatever might have been his 
private views and feelings, he seems to have been a conscientious and industrious 
man ; more heedful of the welfare of his flock and family, than of his country's 
political relations. Among other things, he stated in his petition, " that to dis- 
charge his debts, he had opened a grammar school, and had made .filOO, York 
money, the previous year, and was in a fair way of discharging his debts, — that 
he had five young men from the Island of Jamaica, one from Montreal, four chil- 
dren of a gentleman then in England, with others in his care from New-York 
and the country, — that it might be impossible to recover his school,, in which case 
he should be entirely at the mercy of his creditors." — Extract from an address 
delivered in St. Peter's Church, Cheshire, Conn. Oct. 1844, by Rev. C. E. Beards- 
ley, A. M. The site of Mr, Seabury's grammar school, is still called Seabury Hill. 

« Journal of N. Y. Pro v. Con. vol. i, 214, 492. 

i Doc. History of N. Y., vol. iii, 1063. 


conaection with the Church of Eagland, were obliged to leave 
their stations, suflFering at times the utmost indignity and 

One of the missionaries* writes, Nov. 25, 1776 : — " I have 
been obliged to shut up ray churches, to avoid the fury 
of the populace, who would not suffer the liturgy to be 
used, unless the collects and prayers for the king and royal 
family were omitted, which neither my conscience nor the 
declaration I made and subscribed when I was ordained, would 
allow me to comply with : and although I used every prudent 
step to give no offence, even to those who usurped authority and 
rule," (allowance will of course be made for such expressions,) 
" and exercised the severest tyranny over us, yet my life and 
property have been threatened, upon mere suspicion of being 
unfriendly to what is called the American cause." While all 
the clergy who were unwilling to espouse the side of the colo- 
nies " were marked out for infamy and insult, the missionaries 
in particular, suffered greatly." " Some of them," he adds, 
"have been dragged from their horses, assaulted with stones 
and dirt, ducked in water, obliged to flee for their lives; driven 
from their habitations and families, and laid under arrest and 
imprisonments. These are the bitter though legitimate fruits 
of civil war. AH suffered by their mutual hostility. Brother 
was arrayed against brother, arid the father against his son. 
God grant that such scenes may never be enacted again." 

I refer to these facts, only to show the peculiar difficulties 
with which our church had to struggle from its connection with 
the Church of England. In consequence of this, many congre- 
gations were scattered to the winds ; and it was not until years 
after the war, that regular organization and discipline were 

Bound, as were the clergy, by a declaration solemn as an 
oath, that they would use, in all their public services, "the 
prayer book of the Church of England," in which were prayers 
appointed for the king and royal family, "many able and 
•worthy ministers," says Bishop White, in his Memoirs of the 

• See Thomas Bartow. See Hawkins, pp. 139-40. 


Church, a " from conscientious scruples ceased to ofiBciate," 
when such prayers could no longer be used. " Owing to these 
circumstances," he adds, " the doors of the far greater number 
of the Episcopal churches were closed for several years." 
Whatever we may think of the conduct of these clergy in 
other respects, we cannot but honour their purity of motive and 
honesty of principle, thus maintained and manifested by the 
sacrifice of all that men hold dear. 

Yet there were others, and among them the illustrious 
individual to whom I have just referred, who saw the necessity 
of the case, and threw the whole weight of their influence upon 
the side of the colonies. Prominent among these were the 
clergy of Philadelphia. Let^not the Protestant Episcopalian 
forget that Bishop White, "the father of his church," was one 
of the first chaplains of Congress,!' and invoked, as such, the 
divine blessing upon their earliest deliberations :<= nor let him 
forget that Washington himself, "the father of his country," 
that great and good man worshipped at her altars,^ attending 
regularly upon her soletiin services. No; — let him not forget 
that while her clergy were thus hampered and distracted from 
the very nature of their position, hbr laity in the middle and 
southern States lent a most eflicient aid in their country's hour 
of need. Among the stout hearts and true, that stood up man- 
fully for their country's rights, who more prominent than 
Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay, and Richard Henry Lee,* 

• White's Memoirs, p. 20. 

' Mr. Duche, also an Episcopal clergyman, was the.first chaplain of Congress. 
This was, however, in Sept. 1774, before the Declaration of Independence. He 
was appointed on the nomination of Samuel Adams. John Adams wrote on the 
occasion in a letter to his wife, " Mr. Duch6 is one of the most ingenious men, and 
best characters, and greatest orators in the Episcopal order on this continent, yet 
a zealous^riend of liberty and his country." The remarkable fitness of the ser- 
vice of the day was noted by all. It contained the 35th Psalm. See letter of John 
Adams, 18th September, 1774. Also, N. Y. Review, Jan. 1842. 

•Bishop White was appointed Chaplain in Sep., 17*7, at the gloomiest period 
of the war, just before intelligence was received of the surrender of General 
Burgoyne. He did not hesitate a moment to accept. 

Bishop Provoost, also, was a warm friend of the Colonies. 

"■ Washington was a communicant of the Church. 

• Richard Henry Lee, while President of Congress, wrote a letter, dated New- 
York, Oct. 24th, 1785, to John Adams, Minister then to Great Britain, earnestly 
requesting his agency in securing the Episcopate.— White's Memoirs, p. 325. 


and Benjamin Franklin, » and Patrick Henry. ^ and Anthony 
Wayne, and Generals Moultrie, Sumpter and Morgan ? Who, 
after Washington, contributed more to secure the independence 
of these colonies ? And yet these men were by profession or 
preference connected with the Church of England. All the pa- 
triots from South Carolina and Virginia,« what were they but 

» The following remarkable language, Dr. P. uses in a letter to his daughter 
Sarah. Under what other circumstances would he be more likely to express 
the genuiae feelings of his heart, than to his own daughter, from whom he was 
about to be separated by distance and the perils of the deep 1 He writes from 
Reedy Inland, in the Delaware, Nov. 8th, 1764, on his way to England: 

" Go constantly to Church, whoever preaches. The act of devotion in the 
common prayer book is your principal business there ; and if properly attended 
to, will do more towards amending the heart than sermons generally can do. For 
they were composed by men of much greater piety and wisdom than our common 
composers of sermons can pretend to be ; and therefore I wish you would never 
miss the prayer days. Yet I do not mean that ^ou should despise sermons evea 
if the preachers you dislike ; for the discourse is often mach better than the man, 
as sweet and clear waters come through very dirty earth. I am the more particu- 
lar on this head, as you seemed to express, a little before I came away, some 
inclination to leave our church, which I would not have you do." 

That Dr. Franklin was not only a true Philosopher, but something of a Church- 
man, too, no one can question after reading the above. It is not pretended that 
he was what is called " a religious man ;" or that he could not, at times, speak 
in a vein of pleasantry, which seemed inconsistent with any decided religious 
attachments. (Letter, July 18th, 1784, from Passey to Messrs. Weems and Gant.) 
But that he had deeper religious feelings and more decided religious preferences, 
than the world knew of may not be doubted. His well known motion in Con- 
gress, 26th May, 1781, to arrest a stormy debate, for the purpose of prayer, 
shows his sentiments in regard to the power of religion over others. His ex- 
pression nn his dying bed, to Dr. Shippen, of Philadelphia, " it is safer to be- 
lieve," indicates its power over himself. — N. Y. Review, Life and writings of 
John Jay, Oct. 1841.— Dr. McVickar. 

* The seizure and sale of churches and glebes by the Legislature of Virgini* 
must remain a sad blot upon the history of that State. Patrick Henry resisted 
this act for many years, and it was not until after his decease that it was ob» 
tained. " He had to resist," says Bishop White, (Memoirs, p. 86, to which the 
reader is referred,) " through many years the united efforts of men hostile to re- 
vealed religion, and men who cherished rancorous hatred to the Church of Eng- 
land in particular." 

' Virginia was favored at an early period with the ministrations of the Church 
of England. Rev. Robert Hunt landed in Virginia with a party of settlers, in 
1607. He was " an English clergyman, whose Christian meekness, cheerfulness 
and perseverance, under the severest trials, were a signal blessing to the colony." 
Hawkins', p. 3. It is an interesting fact, in connection with the republicanism 


Episcopalians ? Nay, all from the South, with but few excep- 
tions,* and with them a multitude in the Norths 

Such a fact as this but ill comports with the assertion some- 
times recklessly made, that oup church is anti-republican. She 
hath borne her full share both in the anxious deliberations of 
the council-board, and the hard toil of the battle-field.* At this 

of our Church, that Virginia, an Episcopal colony, should have commenced her 
career with " universal suffrage and equality." See Burke's Virginia, vol I. 
p. 302. Coil's Puritanism, p. 77, 463. 

* " I am well satisfied that a large proportion of the prominent men of the Revo, 
lution were Churchmen. Of the Southern men who figured at that period, prob- 
ably not one was otherwise than an Episcopalian, except Charles Carroll. 
Those from South Carolina and Virginia were so to a man. Such as Rutledge, 
Laurens, Moultrie, Gadsden, Sumpter, the Pinckneys, Maijison, Monroe, Mar- 
shall, Richard Henry Lee, Gen. Harry Lee, Washington, Wythe, General Mor- 
gan, Pendleton, President Nelson, the Pages, the Harrisons, the Randolphs, Pey- 
ton and all the rest. *»»*»*» 
At that period there was scarcely any dissenters at the South, from Maryland, 
down. At the time of the Revolution the congregation of Dr. Davies, a Presby- 
terian minister in Hanover, Virginia, was, 1 believe, the only considerable one 
of that denomination in the State." — Letter from Rev. Dr. Ducachet of Phila- 

The writer of the above letter, than whom no man was more familiar with his 
country's history, speaks in some cases from personal knowledge — of Rutledge, 
for instance, Monroe and Marshall, the Pinckneys also, and of Moultrie and 
Gadsden ; the last two he has seen, in his early youth, standing at the doors of 
the church, in their military costume, with boxes in their hancs, as the custom 
was, for collections. Marshall was one of Bishop Moore's parishioners. His 
devout and humble demeanor attracted universal admiration. He contributed 
liberally towards the establishment of the Virginia Seminary. Judge Story, in 
his Eulogy on Chief Justice Marshall, says, "Among Christian sects, he per- 
sonally attached himself to the Episcopal Church. It was the religion of hjs 
early education, and became afterwards that of his choice." 

' There were. Chancellor Robert R. Livingston, Gouverneur Morris, Lewis 
Morris, William Duer, James Duane, Francis Lewis, Robert Troup, in New- 
York, Gen. Lord Stirling of New Jersey, with Robert Morris of Philadelphia, 
whose services, vital as they were to the cause of the colonies, will never be for- 
gotten, and besides a host of others in both cities. 

In regard to Robert Morris, an intelligent lady, who enjoyed with him an in- 
timate personal acquaintance, states that he married Bishop White's sister, and 
attended Christ Church, Philadelphia. It is well known thai, by his great wealth, 
he sustained the cause of the colonies in the hour of their greatest peril. This 
lady often heard him speak of his having been a "blue-coat boy," in his early 
youth. The members of a charity school in Westminster, were so called. 

" Bishop White states the remarkable fact that the General Convention of 
1785, comprising a fair delegation from seven States, "consisted, as to the lay 
part, principally of gentlemen who had been active in the late Revolution," — 


very moment, a large number of our highest ofiicers, both upon 
land and sea,a who hold their lives at their country's bidding, 
adhere to her faith, and discipline, and worship, as the religion 
of their choice. The Episcopal Church anti-republican ! that 
contributed as much if not more than all others — the above 
names being the witness — to the independence of these United 
States lb The Episcopal Church anti-republican! so ready 
with her best life-blood to uphold the honor and the interests of 
our common country ! The Episcopal Church anti-republican ! 
that daily seeks God's richest blessing upon the highest officer 
of the Republic, with " all that are in authority," and her chosen 
legislature "in Congress assembled!"" This church anti-re- 
publican, whose whole form of government is most strikingly 
analogous to that of the State ? Where else are the checks and 
balances of ecclesiastical legislation so wisely ordered and so 
well arranged? s, Where else is the I'eligious denomination 
among us, where the laity, as such, have a negative upon the 
acts of the clergy, so that no legislative enactment can have 
place without their concurrence 7^ Surely naught but ignorance 
or misapprehension could bring the charge. 

while the application for the Episcopacy then made, was to " the very power we 
had been at war with." — Mem, p. 99. 

Ought not the original document to be published with the names of all the 
members of that convention signed thereto, which the Bishop writes he had in 
his possession "i It is possible also, that a majority of the signers of the Decla- 
ration of Independence were Episcopalians. An intelligent correspondent writes 
that 18 were, certainly, and was inclined to believe that 15 more were so. The 
whole number was 51. 

- A letter from an officer of the Navy, now before the writer, contains the fol- 
lowing passage : " I have been in the Navy upwards of twenty-eight years, and 
have formed the opinion that the majority of the officers are Episcopalians, or 
prefer that mode of worship." 

■> It will be observed that reference is made not to numbers, but to names, and 
the exalted character and eminent services of individuals. 

See Book of Common Prayer. The conservative and anli-revolutionary 
tendency and influence of the Episcopal Church, as a general rule, is manifest, 
as from other things — so especially from this — her constant daily prayer to God 
for " the powers that be." 

* The author is not aware that so republican a feature is found in any of the 
denominations around us. The Episcopal Methodist denomination admits no 
representation at all of her laity, — (Decanver's Catalogue, p. 4, — while among 
others, he believes a majority of the clergy may carry any favorite measure. 


Did space permit, it would be easy to show how fallacious 
was all reasoning a priori, on such a subject. Where might 
"we.expect to find republicanism in forms more pure and perfect, 
than among the men who profess to have fled from civil and 
religious oppression, and to have given up every worldly tie for 
conscience' sake ? And yet among whom of all the multitudi- 
nous denominations that cover our wide-spread land, were found 
more striking instances of intolerance and persecution^' than 
among the Puritans of New England, excellent and noble men 
as they were. At the same time it is a recorded fact, that a large 

The Bishops too, are elective officers. They hold indeed their office for life, or rather 
for " good behaviour." But that such a tenure is consistent with republican insti- 
tutions, is manifest from the fact, that the Judges of the Supreme Court, as well 
as others, hold their offices by the same tenure. At any rate, if it be not re- 
publican, it is apostolic. 

" In the American Episcopal Church, the body which exercises her legislative 
power, is constituted analagous to the paramount civil body of the United States 
— the Congress. This consists of two houses, of Senators and Representatives 
of the several States, the concurrence of both being necessary to laws. And the 
supreme authority of the American Episcopal Church is vested in like manner, 
in a General Convention of two houses, with co-ordinate powers — the House of 
Bishops of the several dioceses — and the house of Clerical and Lay Deputies 
from each diocese, chosen by the clergy and representatives of the congrega- 
ions in diocesan conventions ; the consent of both houses being necessary to the 
acts of the Convention ; and the clergy and laity having a negative upon each 
other. The government of the Episcopal Church in America, is perhaps even 
more republican than that of the Presbyterian denomination. The legislative 
bodies of the latter are not divided as that of the General Convention of the Epis- 
copal Church is, into two houses, similar to the civil legislatures, nor in their 
ecclesiastical assemblies, have the laity, voting as a distinct body, a complete 
negative upon the acts of the clergy, as they have in all the legislative bodies of 
the Protestant Episcopal Church." 

" There is also a close analogy between the civil government and the gov- 
ernment of the Episcopal Church, in the single and responsible Executives ; the 
President and Governors in the one ; and in the other the Bishops of the several 
dioceses, originally elective officers, and amenable by impeachment of the Diocesan 
Conventions to the General Council of Bishops." — Bishop Hobart, " United 
States of America compared with England," p. 29. Bishop White expresses the 
same conviction. — Memoirs, p. 74, 

See Puritanism, by Thomas W. Coit, D. D. It is well known that a distin- 
guish! rg feature of the Newark settlement,— as well as of the Puritan settle 
ments of New-England,— was that no man might be elected to any civil or 
military office, nor have any vote at such election, unless he was a member of 
Congregational Church. See East Jersey under the Proprietaries, p. 44. 


number of their descendants, Congregationalists by profession, 
espoused the cause of the mother country iii the war of the 
Revolution, and expatriated themselves.* 

* The time has arrived when allowances can be or should be made, for prefer- 
ences and prejudices, the growth of education and associations. The object of 
the author was not to draw comparisons, but to show that the opprobrium, if any, 
yet attaches to those who quietly retired from America, and were in consequence 
designated as royalists and refugees, should not rest exclusively upon Episco- 
palians, and also that there was no natural or necessary connection between any 
set of religious tenets, and the principles of republican liberty. A reference to 
the acts of proscription or confiscation of the various states will show the fact 
conclusively. Over three hundred individuals, many of them heads of families, 
were banished by one act of the State of Massachusetts, — more than sixty of them 
being Graduates of Harvard University, — among whom were undoubtedly many 
never conceived to have favored Episcopacy. In New Jersey, among those whose 
property was declared forfeited, — in the county of Ess^x alone, there were more 
than one hundred, — the names of many can be found who had no connection with 
the Episcopal church. 

The reader interested in the subject is referred to Eliot's Biography, Lincoln^ 
History of Worcester, and other local annals, and particularly to " Judge Cur- 
wen's Journal and Letters." Judge C, — himself a descendant of an early emi- 
grant to New-England, and the son of a dissenting clergyman, — was not con- 
nected in any way with the Church of England ; and his Journal abounds in 
references to his countrymen with whom he associated in England as a refugee. 
A large number of these, says Mr. Ward, " were Congregationalists." — He 
men I ions the names of seventeen of the more prominent. 

Id July, 1775, Curwen, then in London, says, " there is an army of New- 
Englanders here ;" and in June, 1776, he mentions " six vessels" arriving at one 
time "laden with refugees," via Halifax. 

So Samuel Q,uincy, writing Jan. 1st, 1777, says, " I see many faces I have been 
used to ; America seems to be transplanted to London." This family, (the 
Cluincy's,) was one of the most ancient and distinguished in Massachusetts. 
— Eliot's Biog.Dictionary. 

But perhaps the most direct testimony may be found in the History of the Early 
Missions of the Church of England, by Rev. Ernest Hawkins, to which refer- 
ence has been already made, wherein are copious extracts of letters, written by 
men who lived at the time and upon the spot. Mr. Breynton, writing from 
Halifax, in a letter, dated Jan. 2d, 1776, says expressly in regard to " the wealthier 
among the loyalist families of New England, who sought refuge in HalifaXj" 
that " many of them were dissenters." Hawkins, p. 371. While in a letter the 
year after, he reports the landing of another body of refugees, " about seventeen 
hundred loyalists from Boston." 

" It appears," adds Mr. Hawkins, "that by the end of 1783, not fewer than 
thirly thousand from New- York, and other parts of the States, had arrived in 
Nova^cotia." " Many of them," he adds, "were members ol the Church of 
England ;" of course, then, many of them were not. 


It was an object of anxious solicitude with the church at the 
close of the war, to secure the succession of the Episcopacy, 
and thus perpetuate that ministry which she believed was es- 
tablished by the apostles,* and designed to be permanent and 
universal. And what she sought for herself she freely accorded 
to others. " When in the course of Divine Providence," such 
is her moderate and well considered language, " these American 
states became independent with respect to civil government, 
their ecclesiastical independence was riecessarily included ; and 
the different religious denominations of Christians in these 
States were left at full and equal liberty to model and organize 
their respective churches and forms of worship and discipline, 
in such manner as they might judge most convenient for their 
future prosperity, consistently with the constitution and laws of 
their country." b 

This object was ultimately obtained by the consecration of 
Bishops White and Provoost, the one of Pennsylvania, the other 
of New- York, at the chapel of the Archiepiscopal Palace, at 
Lambeth, on the 4th of February, 1787. The Archbishop of 
York, the Bishop of Bath and Wells, and the Bishop of Peter- 
borough, joined with the Archbishop of Canterbury in the impo- 
sition of hands." Bishop Seabury had been consecrated two 

The following extract from a letter of Gr. A. Ward, Esq., the intelligent editor 
of " Curwen's Journal and Letters," will be read with interest, as the opinion 
of a man, than whom probably no one has given the subject more attention : 

" It is an unquestionable fact, that very many Congregationalists, descendants 
of the Puritans, expatriated themselves at the commencement of the Revolution, ■ 
some espoused the cause of our mother country, and entered into her service : 
others were refugees froin a dislike to rebellion, and in the iirm belief that their 
course exhibited a love of law and order, and would eventuate for the best interest 
of their native land. A large number of Curwen's friends were Congregational- 
ists ; and I have no doubt, that of the Massachusetts loyalists, ten were of this 
persuasion, to one of the Episcopal Church." 

• It is evident unto all men diligently reading Holy Scripture and ancient 
authors, that from the Apostles' time, there have been these orders of Ministers 
in Christ's Church, — Bishops, Priests, and Deacons." Be ok of Common Pray- 
er. Preface to form for ordaining Deacons. 

i> Preface to the Book of Common Prayer. 

• Bishop White's Memoirs, p. 136. 



or three years before, by the "non-juring bishops of Scotland."* 
Dr. James Madison was shortly after consecrated in England 
as Bishop of Virginia. The succession of the Episcopacy thus 
introduced, was secured by the consecration of others for the 
various States. We have now twenty-nine^ of that order in our 
American church.' 

It is an interesting fact, and somewhat important too, as show- 
ing the sentiments of one of our most distinguished states- 
men, in regard to the anti-republican tendency of Episcopacy, 
that the successful result of the application was owing in a 
great measure to the agency of John Adams, our minister at 
the time, at tlie Court of St. James. A Congregationalist him- 
self, from the very heart of Puritanism, yet can he write in 
words like these:* "There is no part of my life on which I 
look back, and reflect with more satisfaction, than the part I 
took, bold and hazardous as it was to me and mine, in the in- 
troduction of Episcopacy into America." 

The first General Convention that met with a Bishop at its 
head, assembled 28th July, 1789. Measures were immediately 
taken for the proper organization and government of the church, 
and from that time to this, she has grown and strengthened 
until a large proportion of the most intelligent and influential 
citizens of these United States are enrolled among her mem- 

We return to the history of this parish. The venerable 

* Bishops Kilgour, Petrie and Skinner, Nov. 14, 1784. Tiie non-juring 
Bishops, although severed from the State in the Revolution of 1688, yet carefully 
preserved the succession. 

^ There are now (in 1853) thirty five, including three missionary Bishops. 

° Known unto God are all his ways, and he seeth not as man seeth. The 
American Revolution was a link in the chain of his providences, by which his 
mighty plan is bound together. Certainly we have reason to rejoice that we are 
cut loose from the benumbing influence of " State protection." The writer 
heartily coincides with these sentiments, expressed by the Rev. Dr. S. Farmar 
Jarvis of Conn. He cannot but rega li ii. further, as a providential circumstance, 
situated as the church then was, that the Episcopate was not obtained till afier 
the war. Bishop White manifestly held this opinion. Mem., pp. 70, 71, 72, 73. 

' Dr. Wilson's Memoir ol Bishop White, letter 29th Oct., 1814. 

• A Centennial Discourse, delivered in Trinity Church, Newark, N. J., Feb. 
83d, 1846, by the Rev. Matthew H. Henderson, M. A., Rector. 


Society's Abstracts for 1777, say : — " Three letters have been 
received from the Rev. Dr. Seabury ; the first of them, dated 
December 29th, 1776, gives an account of the great distresses 
he had encountered, greater than he can describe, greater, he 
believes, than he could well support again. In the preceding 
year, he had been carried away by force into Connecticut. 
After his return to his mission, he continued tolerably quiet for 
a few weeks ; but after the,King's;'t!woops had evacuated Boston, 
he was perpetually insulted by thfe 'tebels, on their way from 
thence to New- York. This lasted about a month. After the 
Declaration of Independency, an edict was published at New- 
York, making it death to suppoirt the King or any of his ad- 
herents. Upon this he shut up his church; fifty armed men 
being sent into his neighborhood. On the arrival of the 
British troops at Staten Island, and of two ships of war in the 
So.und, the coast was constantly guarded, and the friends of 
Government seized, so that his situation became critical, as he 
was particularly obnoxious to the rebels. After their defeat on 
Long Island, a body of them fixed themselves within two miles of 
his house, so that he thought it prudent to confine himself; for 
it appeared he would otherwise be seized, frequent enquiries 
being made for him, and his house being examined by the 

On the 1st of September, it happened that they withdrew 
their guard from a neighboring point of land on the coast, and 
the guard that was to replace it, mistaking their route, gave 
him an opportunity of effecting his escape to Long Island. 
The rebels, finding they had missed him, vented their rage on 
his church and his property, converting the former into an hos- 
pital, tearing off the covering and burning the pews ; and 
damaging the latter to the value of three hundred pounds cur- 

He accompanied the army into Westchester,' and returned for 
one week to his fajnily, but,, on the army quitting those parts, 
he thought it prudent to retire with his family to New- York. 
He assures the Society that he did not leave his mission so long 
as it was practicable to stay,"* 

• Printed Abstracts of Yen. Prop. Soc. 


In his second letter, dated 29th of March, 1777, after alluding 
to the death of Mr. Babcock, he says :— " With regard to my 
own mission, I can only say that it is utterly ruined ; before the 
King's troops went into that part of the country, the people 
were robbed of their cattle and otherwise plundered by the 
Rebels ; and, I am sorry to say, that they suffered greatly in 
that way from the Royal army. Little or no distinction was 
made ; no redress could be obtained, and no stop was put to it. 
As soon as the King's troops withdrew, the Rebels returned in 
parties, and every party plundered the inhabitants. Many fled 
to this city, with what little they could carry — many were de- 
prived by the Rebels of every thing but the clothes on their 
backs, and sent off with only six days provision, because they 
refused to swear allegiance to the States of America. Children 
and infants have been deprived of their clothes, and women in 
child-bed have had, the coverings, even the sheets, torn from 
their beds, by these monsters, who seem to have nothing of hu- 
manity left but the shape of men only. Many families of my 
parishioners are now in this town, who used to live decently, 
suffering for common necessaries, I daily meet them, and it 
is melancholy to observe the dejection strongly marked on their 
faces, which seem to implore that assistance which I am unable 
to give. To pity and pray for them is all I can do. I shall say 
nothing more of my own situation at present, than that I have 
hitherto supported myself and family with decency, and will 
not distrust the goodness of God which has hitherto preserved 
me, nor render myself unworthy of it by repining and discon- 
tent." a 

In his letter of November 12th, 1777, he observes : — " That 
about a month before, he had visited Westchester, and thought 
of staying the winter there, but was obliged to drop such inten- 
tions on General Burgoyne's defeat, as the Rebels upon that 
event came to that town by night and carried off forty-two of 
the inhabitants." Dr. Seabury concludes with requesting that 
he may remove to Staten Island if he finds it safer than West- 
chester ; and the Society, sensible of his great worth, have 

• New-York M. S. S. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii.617. (Hawks'.) 


signified their ready compliance with his request, engaging to 
continue the salary of £50 per annum, during the present dis- 
turbances.* J 

The Abstracts for 1778, state that two letters have been 
received in the course of the year from the Rev. Dr. Seabury, 
Missionary at Staten Island. In the former he acquaints the 
Society, " that in December, 1777, he preached there to a very 
decent and attentive congregation, of near three hundred people, 
and baptized twelve infants, &c. That the wretched state of 
his late mission at Westchester, is beyond description ; many of 
the inhabitants having removed to New- York and Long Island, 
where they want many comforts of life ; and some who have 
remained at home, are continually plundered by knots and 
bands of disorderly people; that all good principles and im- 
pressions of morality seeni to be wearing out in that devoted 

lu his second letter he thus writes : — 



New- York, November 22d, 1778. 
Rev. Sir : 

" I am obliged still to continue at New- York, it being impracti- 
cable for me to return to Westchester, or reside with safety on 
Staten Island ; and though I am strong in hope, that the com- 
motions in this country will soon subside, yet I confess the pres- 
ent appearances seem to indicate a fixed resolution in the Con- 
gress to support their Independency, as long as they possibly 
can. I am, however, confident it could not be supported against 
the vigorous efforts of Great Britain for one campaign, as the 
resources of this country must be nearly exhausted. 

I remain. Rev, Sir, &c., 

Samuel Seabury."'^ 

• Printed .Abstracts qf Vea. Pi., goe. for 1777. 
' Printed Abstracts of Ven. P. Soe. for 1778. 
« New- York M. S. S. from ArcBives at Fulham, vol. ii. 625. (Hawks'.) 


From this time he continued to reside in New- York until the 
peace, and served as Chaplain of the King's American regiment, 
commanded by Colonel Fanning.* 

His last report to the Society is contained in the following 
communication : — 



New- York; June 2ith, 1782. 
Rev. Sir : — 

"The situation of affairs in this country, has for the last year 
continued so much the same that 1 have nothing new of which 
to inform the Society. Both Westchester and Staten Island 
remain in the same ruined state, as much exposed to the incur- 
sions of the Rebels as ever. Though their incursions have not 
lately been so frequent as formerly.'"" 

In 1784 he went to England to obtain consecration as a 
Bishop, but objections arising there, he was consecrated in 
Scotland, on the 14th of November of that year," by Bishops 
Kilgour, Petrie and Skinner. Early in the summer of the 
ensuing year, he returned to Connecticut, the first Bishop of 
our Church (for Talbot and Weldon left no traces behind them,) 
that had been seen in that part of the North American con- 

The following extract appears in a communication from the 
Rev. T. B. Chandler, D. D., to Isaac Wilkins, Esq., dated Lon- 
don, February 25th, 1785. The bearer of which was the Rt. 
Rev. Dr. Seabury : — 

My Dear Sir: 
" 1 hope that you may happen to be at Halifax when this ar- 
rives there— both for your own sake and that of the bearer, who 
is no less a person than the Bishop of Connecticut. He goes 
by the way of Nova Scotia for several reasons, of which the 

• Sabine's Hist, of the American Loyalists. 

i" New-York, M. S. S. from Archives at Fulham, Vol. ii. 657. (Hawks'.) In 
1783, the Society paid Mr. Seabury a salary of .£50. He was then residing in 
England. See Abstracts for 1783. 

e Updike's Hist, of the Narragansett Church. 


rincipal is,' that he may see the situation of that part of his 
imily, which is in that quarter, and be able to form a judg- 
ment of the prospects before them. He will try hard to see you, 
but, as he will not have much time to spare, he fears that he 
shall not be able to go to Shelburne in quest of you. 

You were acquainted with this Bishop and his adventures 
from the time of his leaving New- York, in 1783. He came 
home with strong recommendations to the two Archbishops and 
the Bishop of London, from the clergy of Connecticut, and 
with their most earnest request that he might have Episcopal 
consecration for the church in that Slate. Though no objections 
could arise from his character, the Bishops here thought such a 
measure would be considered as rash and premature, since no 
fund had been established for his support, and no consent to 
his admission had been made by the States ; besides, no Bishop 
could be consecrated here for a, foreign country, without an act 
of Parliament to dispense with the oaths required by the es- 
tablished office. These difficulties and objections continued to 
operate through the winter, and several candidates for Priest's 
orders, who had been waiting near a twelvemonth, were about 
going over to the Continent, to seek for ordination in some 
foreign Protestant Episcopal Church. At length a short act 
was obtained, authorizing the Bishop of London and his sub- 
stitute- to dispense with the aforesaid oaths in the ordination of 
Priests aud Deacons for the American States ; but nothing was 
said in it about the consecration of Bishops. The Minister, it 
seems, was fearful that opening the door for the consecration of 
Bishops would give umbrage to the Americans, and, therefore, 
every prospect of success here was at an end. 

Dr. Seabury, with his wonted spirit and resolution, then 
thought it his duty to apply elsewhere, and by the intervention 
of a friend, consulted the Bishops in Scotland, who were equally 
without the protection and the res?ram< of gr-iernment. They 
cordially met the proposal, and our friena was consecrated 
Bishop for Connecticut, at Aberdeen, on the 14th of November 
last. I have been thus particular, on the supposition that yon 
may not have been acquainted with so much of this history."* 

» Prom the original letter in the possession of Gouverneur M. Wilkins, Esq. 


Bishop Seaburjr died February 25th, 1796, aged sixty-ei, 
years. Two volumes of his sermons were published before hi 
decease, and one volume in 1798. A sermon founded on St 
Peter's exhortation to fear God and honor the King, deliveret 
before the provincial or loyalist troops, was printed during th( 
war by direction of Governor Tryon.a The following is in- 
scribed on his tomb-stone, at New London : 




Who departed this transitory scene, 

February 25th, 1796, 

In the 68th year of his age, and the eleventh of his 


Ingenious without Pride, 

Learned without Pedantry, 

Good without severity, 

He was duly qualified to discharge 

The duties of the Christian and the Bishop. 

In the Pulpit he enforced religion, 

In his conduct he exemplified it. 

The poor he assisted with his charity, 

The ignorant he blessed with his instruction. 

The friend of men, he ever designed them good, 

The enemy of vice, he ever opposed it. 

Christian! do'st thou aspire to happiness'? 

Seabury has shown the way that leads to it.^ 

Charles Seabiiry, the youhgest Son of' the Bishop, vrAS' bo 
in Westchester, in May, 1770, and succeeded his father in ti 
church at New London. In 1796, he preached awhile at Ja 
maica. His first wife was Anne, the daughter of Roswell Sal- 
tonstall, of New London, by whom he had issue. His son, 
Samuel Seabury, D. D., is the present Rector of the Church ol 
the Annunciation, in the city of New- York.* 

By an act of the Legislature, passed 18th of April, 1785, il 
was ordered : — " that the District formerly called and known 

' Sabine's History of the American Loyalists. . i ,-. i 

' The aibove .inscription was written by Rev. John Bowden, S. T. D., formerly 
Professorbf moral Philosophy in Columbia Coll^^e, N.'Y. ' ' 

• Updike's BUstory of JSTarragansett Churchy - - _ 


by the stile of the Borough and Town of Westchester, shall 
henceforth be called and known by the name of the Town of 
Westchester." Up to this dale, the church appears to have 
been governed by the charter of 1762. On the 6th day of April, 
in the year 1784, the Legislature of the State of New- York 
passed an act eiititled, " An act to enable all religious denomi- 
nations in this State, to appoint Trustees, who should be a body 
corporate, for the purpose of taking care of the temporalities 
of their respective congregations, and for other purposes therein 
mentioned.""- Under the provisions of this act, St. Peter's 
Church, Westchester, was incorporated on the 19 th of April, 
1788, the following peirsons being chosen trustees : Lewis Gra- 
ham, Josiah Browne, Thomas Hunt, Israel Underbill, John 
Bartow, Phillip L Livingston, and Samuel Bayard.i^ 

The earliest record of the proceedings of the Trustees, is 
dated May 12th, 1788, when "it was resolved, that the old 
church be sold to Mrs.Sarah Ferris for the sum of ten pounds. " 
Their next business was to obtain the necessary funds 
for the erection of another edifice. Accordingly, at a meet- 
ing held September, 1788, Israel Underbill and John Bar- 
tow, Jr., were authorized " to draw lip a subscription paper, 
and carry it round to the people, in order to raise a siini of 
money to build a church, on or near the same ground where the 
Church of St. Peter, late removed, stood." ' At a subsequent 
meetiflg', held October 13th, 1788, Philip I. Livingston laid be- 
fore the corporation the following petition to the Venerable 
Society : — 
" To THK Society for the Propagation op the Gospel 

IN Foreign Parts. The Petition of Josiah Brown, 

Lewis Graham, Samuel Bayard, Israel Underbill, 

AND John Bartow, Jr., 
Humbly sheweth, 

That your Petitioners are by law Trustees of the Episcopal 

• Laws of N;. Y. from 1778''to 1787. Greenleaf, vdl. I. chapter xviii. 71. 
jiigioife Soci!'Lib.A.p.f9. '^ " ' ' 

•i Cottrity Reib. Religio^ 

£1 ■;■:■ E" rrj 


Church of St. Peter's, in the Township, late Borough of West- 
chester, and State of New- York, in North America. The 
Township in which your petitioners reside, from its vicinity to 
the Capital of this State, was, during the late war subject to the 
incursions and depredations of both British and American armies, 
unprotected by either. That thus circumstanced, their Church 
and Parsonage house very early suffered the ravages of war, 
and have been so materially wasted as not to claim the expense 
of a reparation. That the greater part of their congregation have 
been also by these means greatly injured in their estates, and 
many reduced to abject poverty, and that under these calami- 
tous events they have been since the commencement of the late 
war, and even unto this day, without a gospel Minister established 
in their Township, and therefore, as might be expected, vice and 
irreligion too much prevail amongst the people. And your peti- 
tioners further beg leave to show, that from a sense of duty ow- 
ing to thf iselves, as well as from a most unfeigned regard for 
the welfa .'•f the souls of those with whom they are connected 
in socif*7 ; ihey are most anxiously soliciton*!, as soon as may be, 
to erect u.^rther church upon their glebe, and establish a minis- 
ter. But as the greater part of the members of their Church are 
unable to contribute any considerable sums toward these desira- 
ble purposes, your petitioners have the best reason to believe 
their good intentions will be intirely defeated, unless they are 
aided with charitable donations from abroad. And your peti- 
tioners beg]leave to show, that they are informed your honorable 
Society have some property in this state, bequeathed to your 
Corporation for charitable purposes, by the will of St. George 
Talbot, formerly of New- York, and that it is your intention to 
bestow whatever may arise from funds yet left in America, to 
American Episcopal Churches. Encouraged by this hope, and 
fionfiding in the ■vt^il known pious and liberal disposition of your 
honorable board, your Petitioners humbly request, that to enable 
them to rebuild their church, they may be favored with the socie- 
ty's bounty, and authorized to receive for this purpose, from any 
monies being the property of the Society, which now are, or may 
hereafter come into the hands of the executors of the late St. 
George Talbot, or any of them, or any person or persons acting 


for them, or action of them, the sum of £200 sterling, or such 
other sums, as to the piety and charity of your truly christian 
Corporation shall seem meet j and your Petitioners as in duty 
bound, shall ever pray &c."a 

Upon the 26th of January 1789, the Trustees made an agree- 
ment with JohnOdell, of New- York, carpenter, to build a church 
for the sum of jesse.b 

Si Peter s Church, erected m 1790. 

At a meeting, Nov. 16. 1789, Messrs Bayard, Livingston and 
Bartow, were appointed a committee to write a letter to the Rev. 
Dr. Chan,dler, returning the thinks of this Corporation, for his 
favorable recommendation of this Congregation to the Reverend, 
the Society for the Propagation of the Gos])el in Foreign Parts ; 
and for his assistance in procuring the benefaction which the 
Trustees are informed, the said Society have been pleased to 
grant to this Congregation." 

The Trustees now proceeded to restore the services in tjie 
parish, which had been suspended for nearly thirteen years. — : 
Accordingly, at a meeting held July 5th, 1790, it was resolved : 
" That an application be made to the Rev. Theodosius Bartow, 

■ "Vyestchester Vestry Book, p. 39. 
1" Westchester Vestry Book, p. 40. 
• Ditto, p. 44. In 1791. The Society were pleased to grant the sum of ^00. 


for the purpose of engaging him as a minister to serve this 
Church, for the term of two years, every other Sunday in the 
year, and that the members of this congregation be called upon, 
by the Trustees, to subscribe such sums as they think proper on 
this occasion."* 
Upon the 2d of January 1792 the Trustees accepted the 


as minister of the Church, for a term of two years, from the 1st 
of January, 1791. His ministrations were highly acceptable du- 
ring this short period. 


•was elected his successor, on the 30th of August, 1794. He was 
the son of John Ireland, an officer in the British army during 
the revolution, who died in this country. He was born in 
England, A. D. 1756 ; but at what institution he graduated is 
unknown. He came to this country some time prior to the 
adoption of the federal constitution ; studied for holy orders ; was 
ordained deacon a:nd priest by the Rt. Rev. Sam'l Provoost, D. D. 
in 1792. and was called to this parish, as we have seen, in 1791. 
The following release for the site of the church, and adjoining 
cemetery, was given by the Trustees of the Town, to those of 
the Church in 1795. But as the Redtor of this Parish had 
been inducted overall the rights and appurtenances of the Church 
for a period of nearly seventy-five years, and more especially 
as the Charter of 1762 had confirmed the rector, wardens and 
vestrymen in possession, " of the church and the ground whereon 
the same was built, and the cemetery belonging to the same j" we 
cannot see by what right the former party could release proper- 
ty that did not belong to them. Such a conveyance amounts to 
nothing at all. 

' Westchester Vestry Book. In 1791 it was ordered, "that a collection be made 
for the use of the Church and the minister, on every day on which-Divine service 
shall be performed." 


I K-JV - 


"This Indenture made the 20th day of January, in the year of our Lord 1795, b« J 
tween the Trustees of the Town of Westchester, of the one part, and the Trus- 
tees of the Episcopal Church of St. Peter's, in the Town of Westchester of the 
other part : Witnesseth, that the parties of the first part, for and in consideration 
of the sum oi twenty shillings to them in hand paid, at or before the ensealing and 
delivery of these presents, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged ; have gran- 
ted, bargained, sold, aliened, released and confirmed, and by these presents do 
grant, bargain, sell, alien, release and confirm unto the parties of the second part, 
the Trustees of the Episcopal Church of St. Peter's, in the Town of Westchester, 
and their successors for ever, all that certain piece, parcel and lot of ground on 
which the Episcopal Church of St. Peter's, in said Town of Westchester is erected, 
and also the Burying Ground adjoining the said Church, as it is now enclosed and 
fenced, and which heretofore has been used for a Burial Place, by the inhabitants 
of said Township, containing about one acre, be the same more or less, and the 
reversion and reversions, remainder and remainders, rents, issues and profits of 
the said premises, and of every part and parcel thereof, particularly all benefits 
and profits arising from a lease of the said Burial Ground, heretofore granted to 
George Embree, and which will shortly be determined, and all Estate, Right, 
Title, Interest, Claim and Demand whatsoever, of the Trustees of the Town of 
Westchester, of, in and to all and singular the said Premises, and of and to every 
part and parcel thereof, with their appurtenances. To have and to hold the said 
Lots and parcel of land on which the aforesaid Church is erected, and the afore- 
said adjoining Burial Ground and Premises above mentioned, with the appurte- 
nances unto the said Trustees of the Episcopal Church, in the Town of Westches- 
ter and.their successors, to the only proper use and behoof of the said Trustees of the 
Episcopal Church of St. Peter's, in the Town of Westchester, and their successors 
forever ; Provided always, and upon condition that the said Trustees of the Episco- 
pal Church of St. Peter's, in the Town of Westchester, and their successors do and 
shall at all times hereafter permit and suffer the inhabitants of the Town of West- 
chester, to Bury their Dead in the said Burial Ground, without any fee or com- 
pensation being exacted therefor, in such vacant'parts of the said Burial Ground as 
shall be directed and ordered from time to time by the said Trustees, of jthe Epis- 
copal Church of St. Peter's, in the Town of Westchester, or their successors, or 
by any person legally authorized under them, to direct the same ; and provided 
always, that anything herein notwithstanding, the inhabitants of the said Town 
shall always be permitted to bury their dead near to and adjoining their families 
who have heretofore been buried in the said Burial Ground. 
Sealed with the seal of the Trustees, and signed by their order. 


ISAAC UNDERBILL, Pr«»iden«."«, . 

» Westchester Vestry Book, p. 


St. Peter's Church continued under the act of 1784, providing 
for the incorporation of rehgious Societies generally, until the 
2nd of August, 1795 ; when, in accordance with the act passed 
for the relief of the Protestant Episcopal Church, on the 7th of 
March preceeding, it was again incorporated. Israel Underhill 
and Philip I. Livingston, Churchwardens, John Bartow Jr., Thos. 
Bartow, Oliver de Lancey, Warren de Lancey, Joseph Brown, 
Jonathan Fowler, Robert Heaton and Nicholas Bayard, vestry- 

By this act the vestry or a major part of them were vested 
with full power to call and induct'' a minister. Accordingly, 
at a meeting, in August, 1795, Mr. Ireland, was confirmed in his 
call to the rectorship of the church. 

Mr. Ireland continued his ministrations till 1797 ;<= during 
this period the present Church edifice was consecrated, and the 
congregation consi.lerably increased. In 1798 he was called to 
St. Ann's Church, Brooklyn, where he remained until 1806, when 
he removed to Grace Church, Jamaica, Long Island. In 1809, 
he ceased to be a minister of the Protestant Episcopal Church, and 
entered the navy as a chaplain, in which capacity he served up 
to the time of his death. He died at the Navy- Yard, Brooklyn, 
on the 25th of March, 1822. " He was (says one who knew him 
intimately) a very accomplished man, possessed of highly pol- 
ished manners, and an excellent scholar, being gifted with a re- 
markably harmonious and pleasing voice ; he excelled in the de- 

• County Rec. Religious Soc. Lib. A. 58. 

•• "InductioQ is the vesting of the minister with the temporalities of the Con- 
gregation, and in the Church of England, is performed by the patron of the living, 
who also appoints the minister ; and in the Church in this country the vestry 
or congregation choose the minister ; and fix his salary and other temporalities. — , 
The Bishop or some other minister appointed by him, institutes the minister thus 
chosen to the spiritual charge of the Congregation. The general Convention 
recognized the principal, and prescribed the office of Institution agreeably to the 
above. Induction is that act by which a minister is vested with the temporalities 
of a living ; Institution is that by which he is vested with the cure of souls." 

• Agreeably to the 4th Canon of 179G, Mr. Ireland gave in to the Bishop, the 
amount of his parochial register, on the 4th of Oct. 1797. See journal of Diocesan 
Con. The parochial reports were not printed with the journals until 1804i 


livery of his sermons, whilst his style of composition would 
compare with the best models in our language." The following 
is the inscription from his tombstone : 


died the 25th day of March, 1822, 
aged 66 years. 

" At a meeting of the Wardens and Vestrymen, with the Con- 
gregations of Westchester, and Eastchester, on the 7th day of 
June, 1798, it was resolved, that the said Congregations do unite 
and associate, in order to procure a clergyman to oificiate for 
them."a Accordingly on the 9th of March, 1789, the 


was elected minister of the two churches. He was the son of 
Martin Wilkins, a rich planter of Jamaica, W. I. where he was 
born in 1741.b His father dying when he was quite young, he 
was sent to New- York, to be educated. In 1756 he entered 
Kings College, (now Columbia,) where he .graduated in 1760.<: — 
He prepared himself (says Sabine) for the ministry, but did not 
take orders. Having settled in the county of Westchester, he 
was returned as a member of the House of Assembly, in which 
body he became a leader on the ministerial side. His influence 
with his associates, and with his party was very great." 

» Westchester Vestry Book. 

' The family of Wilkins, was originally seated in the County of Glamorgan, 
South Wales, and derives from " Robert de Wintona, or Wincestria, who came 
into that country with Robert Filzhamon, who was Lord of the manor of Languian 
near Cowbridge, and built a castle there, the ruins of which are still extant ; the 
valley, underneath, is called Pant Wilkyn (Wilkyn's vale) to this day. Mem- 
bers of the family, yet reside at Brecon, Glamorganshire, andTVIaeslough, Rad- 
norshire. The more immediate ancestor of the American branch emigrated to 
Jamaica, West Indies, in 1720, and settled as a planter at St. Dorothy's in that 
colony. His grandson, was the Rev. Isaac Wilkjns. The coat armor of this 
family is — ,: Or, a wyvern ppr. Crest, a wyvern or Whelk ppr. motto. Syn ar, dy 
Hun Anglice, Beware of thyself. 

= Mr. Wilkins received the degree of A. M. from King's College, in the year 


Mr. Wilkins's zeal and extreme loyalty, rendered him very 
obnoxious to the Whigs. Besides his prominent position in the 
Assembly, he gave utterance to his thoughts, in essays. It is a 
singular circumstance, that the youthful Hamilton, who was 
also born in the West Indies, undertook the task of replying to 
two of his poetical effusions. One of them, the " Congress Can- 
vassed," &c, which was signed, A. W. Farmer, was extensively 
circulated ; and as well as that called, " A View of the Controver- 
sy between Great Britain and her Colonies," was summarily 
disposed of whenever they fell into the hands of tho-'e whose 
measures they criticised and condemned. 

In 1775 he left the country, and went to England. At the 
moment of his departure, he issued the following address : — 

New- York, May 3d, 1775. 

My Countrymen : — 

" Before I leave America, the land II ove, and in which is con- 
tained every thing that is valuable and dear to me — my wife, my 
children, my friends and property — permit me to make a short 
and faithful declaration ; which I am induced to do, neither 
through fear nor a consciousness of having acted wrong. An 
honest man and a christian hath nothing to apprehend from this 
world. God is my judge, and God is my witness, that all I have 
done, written or said, in relation to the present unnatural dis- 
pute between Great Britain and her Colonies, proceeded from an 
honest intention of serving my country. Her welfare and pros- 
perity were the objects towards which all my endeavors have 
been directed. They are still the sacred objects which I shall 
ever steadily and invariably keep in view. And, when in Eng- 
land, all the influence that so inconsiderable a man as I am can 
have, shall be exerted in her behalf. It has been my constant 
maxim through life, to do my duty conscientiously, and to trust 
the issue of my actions to the Almighty. May that God, in 
whose hands are all events, speedily restore peace and liberty to 
my unhappy country. May Great Britain and America be soon 
united in the bonds of everlasting unity, and when united, may 
they continue a free, a virtuous and happy nation to the end 


of time. I leave America, and every endearing connection, be- 
cause I will not raise my hand against my Sovereign, nor draw 
my sword against my country ; when I can conscientiously draw 
it in her favor, my life shall be cheerfully devoted to her ser- 

Isaac Wilkins." 

In 1776, he returned to Long Island, where he remained un- 
til the peace, when he returned to Shelburne, Nova Scotia. He 
remained in Nova Scotia several years, and lived a part of the 
time at Lunenburgh."* He was ordained deacon in 1798, and 
afterwards priest by the Right Rev. Samuel Provoost, D. D. of 
this diocese. In 1799 he was settled, as we have shown, over 
this parish. 

At a vestry meeting on the 22nd of July, 1801, it was resolved : 
" That the Rev, Isaac Wilkins, being now in priest's orders, 
and having officiated for us for two years past, to our satisfac- 
tion, be now called to the Rectory of this Parish, agreeably to 
the resolution and intention of the Churchwardens and Vestry. 
men on the 9th of March, 1799."'' 

In 1806 Mr. Wilkins makes a report to the Diocesan Conven- 
tion of forty Gommunicants, and eighteen baptisms, &c. ; the fol- 
lowing year his communicants numbered nearly fifty. 

The Rev. William Powell was elected his assistant on the 
12th day of July, 1829. The Rev. Isaac Wilkins died February 
the 5th, 1830. His remains were interred on the south side of 
the chancel of St, Peter's Church, under the following inscrip- 


to the" memory of the 


who, for thirty-one years, was the 

diligent and faithful minister 

of this parish, 

» Sabine's American Loyalists. 
» Westchester Vestry Book. 


placed here, as he believed, by his Redeemer, 

He remained satisfied with the 

pittance allowed him, rejoicing that even in that 

he was no burden to his 

parishioners ■, 

nor ever wished, nor ever went forth 

to seek a better livng. 

Died 5th February, 1830, 

Aged 89 years. 

The following obituary notice appeared in the Christian Jour- 
nal for March, 1830 :— 

" Died at Westchester, New- York, on Friday, February 5th, in 
• the eighty-ninth year of his age, the Rev. Isaac Wilkins, D. D., 
rector of St. Peter's Church, in that place. 

If the most stern and sterling integrity ; a conscience which 
knew no compromise ; and an habitual purpose, passing by all 
selfish considerations, and aiming, through good report and evil 
report, at duty, with all its sacrifices, responsibilities, and conse- 
quences, form the upright, virtuous and honourable man. Dr. Wil- 
kins was among the most upright, the most virtuous and the most 
honourable. If deep and thorough conviction of the great truths 
of the Gospel ; the entire submission of a more than ordinarily 
strong and enlightened understanding to the teachings of God's 
word ; an abiding and humbling sense of a personal need of a Sa- 
viour and Sanctifier ; a child-like reliance on the Saviour and 
Sanctifier ; revealed in holy writ; devotion of the most intense 
character ; and piety infusing its holy influences into all the 
heart, all the soul, and all the mind, are constituents of a 
true Christian, he has cause to thank God, who has grace 
to take pattern herein,, by the character of the venerable man 
now noticed. If love for that Church which Christ loved even 
unto death ; reverence for the appointments which He made for 
its perpetuity and good order, and for its subserving the great 
end of its establishment in the sanctification and salvation of His 
people ; a due appreciation of that primitive evangelical piety, 
■which led Christians to be of one heart and one mind, to con- 
tinue steadfast in the apostle's doctrine and fellowship, and hold- 
ing, as faithful members of the Church, the Head, which is 
Christ, thus to derive from Him grace to increase with the in- 


crease of God ; if these enter essentially into the character of a 
good Churchman, never had the Chnrch a truer son than in the 
subject of thisnotice. If talents and learning of a superior order • 
an intimate acquaintance with the whole range of Christian the- 
ology ; an ardent love for the duties of the ministry ; an abiding 
and practical application to himself, of the truths and precepts 
whicli he delivers to others ; a rule and measure in delivering 
those truths and precepts, casting off all reference to popular 
liking, and governed solely by the word of God, and by a sense 
of responsibihty to Him ; a conscientious fulfilment of the vows 
of ordination ; faithful allegiance to the authorities of that por- 
tion of the Catholic Church to which he belongs ; and an en- 
lightened and zealous devotion to its interests, mark the able 
minister of the New Testament ; one of the best prayers we can 
offer for the Church, is, that God would raise up for her many 
ministers as well qualified for their Master's work, as was this 
venerable man. 

A conscience so true as his ; a sense of duty so far removed 
as was his, from any sacrifice to personal interest, personal ease, 
and the satisfaction of wearing the feather of popularity ; and a 
mind of the more than ordinary clearness and elevation, which 
characterized his, may sometimes fail, in what may be thought 
due allowance for supposed errors of judgment, for the weak- 
ness of human nature, and for the strength with which the 
world allures, to some abatement of the rigid demands of duty 
in favour of what is easier and more gratifying to the natural 
man. However this faithful servant of God (and his religious 
views were of too evangelical a character, to be blind to the fact, 
that the very best have their imperfections,) may have some- 
times exemplified the truth of this remark, it was only where he 
thought principle was concerned, and in honest compliance with 
what he deemed duty, and what he deemed real charity, or a 
sincere desire to be instrumental in leading others into the truth 
and to avoid even the appearance of sanctioning or conniving 
at error. 

In private and social life, the piety, kindness, benevolence, and 
cheerfulness of the true Christian, an affectionate interest in the 
welfare and happiness of all about him, the urbanity of an ac- 
omplished gentleman, the good sense and extensive information, 


of an intelligent and well read man, the fancy of a ready poet, 
and the sprightliness of trae and chastened wit, rendered him one 
of the most profitable and pleasing of companions. And for all 
the sweet charities, the endearing sympathies, and the elevated 
affections, of domestic life, he has left a monument that will per- 
ish only with the hearts in which it is erected. 

Although from early life of a religious turn of mind, much 
devoted to theological reading, attached to clerical society, and 
cherishing an affection and desire, equal to his fitness, for the 
ministry, it was not until he had attained to nearly three-score 
years of age, that Dr. Wilkins found himself sufficiently released 
from civil and secular cares to gratify his early and abiding pref- 
erence of the ministry, as his profession. He was then ordained 
deacon, and afterwards, priest, by the Right Rev. Bishop Provoost, 
of this diocese. He soon settled in the parish, in the charge 
of which he continued until his death ; having added to it. for 
a time, that of St. Paul's Church, Eastchester, He continued in 
the exercise of his public duties until within a few months of 
his death. He was a graduate of Columbia College, in this 
city, and was for many years its oldest surviving alumnus, 
having received the degree of B. A. in 1760, and of A. M. in 
1763. In 1 8 1 1 he was honoured by his A Ima Mater with the de- 
gree of D. D. His performance of the public services of the 
Church, was characterized by peculiar solemnity and dignity, and 
by a manner clearly indicative of the deep and engaged interest 
which his heart felt in the holy offices. In his preachiiig, he 
aimed at the faithful exhibition of the whole counsel of God ; 
and explained and enforced the doctrines of the Gospel, the 
distinctive principles of our Church, and the whole range of 
Christian obligation and duty, with a clearness which manifes- 
ted his own understanding of them, and an earnestness which 
proved how deeply his heart was engaged in the work. He 
was conscious of the existence of no error in faith or practice, 
against which he would hesitate boldly and fearlessly, to breast 
himself. He saw nothing to be his own duty, or that of his people, 
to which he would not, in the most uncompromising manner, 
devote himself, or which he would not most faithfully and earn- 
estly urge a.nd enforce upon them. It has been said of him, 
and it is her« .believed to have been most justly said, that had 


he lived in times of martyrdom, there is not that thing which 
he thought it his duty to say or do, which he would have left un- 
said or undone, or the act or word which he deemed inconsist- 
ent with the most rigid demands of duty and of conscience, which 
he would have done or said -to save his Hfe. His was a piety 
and virtue which would have remained unmoved, when those 
more boasted might have found plausible excuses for giving 
way. The unrivalled venerableness of his appearance, for many 
years past, added to the worth, dignity, and sanctity of his charac- 
ter, invested his public ministrations with a deep and peculiar 
interest. It was to him that reference was made in the beautiful 
lines entitled 'The Watchman,' published in the Christian 
Journal for December, 1826."" 


" It was the day of Christians' prayer. — A few 
Had met in chapel built in olden time, 
For Christian worship. — He, the good old man, 
Was at the altar, and his generous blood 
Was in the veins of those who knelt around, 
To the third and fourth degree. Time had thinn'd 
His locks, but had not wholly wasted them ; 
Yet what remained were loosely scattered o'er 
His brow, and hung in light, thin curls about 
His neck, and waved in every lightest breath ; 
Ripened they seemed, and fit for ready harvest ; 
Whiter were they than the wreath of foam 
Which binds the brow of the broad cataract. — 

The pious man had been at prayers with all 
His people, and his countenance was white 
As was his lawn ; and as you gazed upon 
His face, it paler grew, witfthis devotions, 
And brighter still the fancy made it seem 
Like that which Peter saw the Son of man 
Did wear, when saints come down from heaven 

to hold 
Converse with him upon the mountain height. 

'' I saw the reverend man of age ascend 

The pulpit, with his raiment changed — His step 
Was feeble, and infirm, and slow ; and when 

» The lines referred to in the above sketch, were taken from a Vermont paper. 
Mr. Wilkins was 83 years, of age when the author heard him preach. 


Hejeached the height, he sank as if exhausted; 
And as he rose he trembled — not because 
The eyes of mortal man were on him fixed ; 
Nor yet because he stood beforehis God — 
But yet he trembled — age was on his limbs 
That half refused their office — but he rose, 
A watchman on a tower ; and you might see 
His reverend figure, which before was bent 
With weight of years, now animate, erect, 
And lifted to the height of youthful prime. 
And clothed with dignity of one that came 
With message from the sky. Slowly he stretch'd 
His trembling hand, as in aflFection, o'er 
The people of his charge, and with a voice 
That faltered, though its aged tones were full, 
Announced his text — ' Watchman, what of 
the night V 

Who that hath seen a boy, green in his youth,' 
Whose soul of pure devotion, purified 
By fire that burned on God's own altar, has 
From that holy thing, the pulpit, shot down 
On hoary heads beneath him, light from heaven 
To guide, or terrors from the damned to warn: 
Who that hath seen and heard him, hath not 

A conscious shuddering run thro' all his blood t 
But when the Patriarch of his people rose, 
Whose foot was sinking in the grave on which 
It restedi while his hand reached heaven's 

To which the hand of angels stretched, to lift 
Him, their pure brother, to the skies, soon as 
His work was ended ; and when to his text. 
With tones almost,unearthly, that did seem 
To come from other worlds, the old man gave 
This answer—' I, the watchman, tell you true, 
The morning cometh and the night also.' 
Ah say, what heart that heard it did not sink 
Within his bosom at the threatening word ! 
O Watchman, venerable man ! thy night 
Of earthly pilgrimage must even be past ; 
And true thy morning cometh, which the night 
Shall never, never darken or obscure." 
Rochester, August. D. D. B.' 

Christian Journal No, 13, Dec. 1826, p. 400. 


"From the year 1801, until, in 1821, he was obliged, by the in- 
firmities of age, to decline ; Dr. Wilkins was uniformly returned 
as a clerical deputy from the diocese of New- York, to the General 
Convention, and attended the greater number of the meetings of 
that body. There, as in the diocesan convention, he was the able 
and enlightened advocate of sound principles of ecclesiastical pol- 
ity, and of such measures as in his conscience he believed to be 
the most agreeable to them. Indeed, never had the Church a 
more disinterested friend. He overlooked all selfish considera- 
tions, tending either to personal ease, or to the gratification of 
receiving human commendation or applause, and went directly 
to the point, whither he thought himself drawn by duty and 
by conscience. The strength of his faith, and the clearness of 
his religious views, were eminently conspicuous during the pro- 
gress of a most painful and distressing disorder towards its fatal 
termination. His mind unclouded, and his heart strengthened 
and sanctified by the grace of God, he saw no terror in death, but 
anxiously, and yet meekly and resignedly, desired its more speedy 
approach. The thought of being soon translated to Paradise 
not only soothed and supported him, but ministered to the con- 
stitutional and Christian cheerfulness which had characterized 
him through life. At length the kind and gracious summons 
came, and rarely has a soul departed stronger in the faith, richer 
in the hope, and more sincere and affectionate in the genuine 
charity, of the Gospel, than that which then entered on the great 
salvation purchased by the blood of the everlasting covenant.''^ 

On April the 27th, 1830, the 


having been assistant minister to Dr. Wilkins, for nearly a year, 
was called to the rectorship. He was the son of ,Tohn Powell, of 
Dublin, Ireland, whose family were originally seated in Wales. 
He was born in Dublin, A. D. 1788, where he received his educa- 
tion, some say in Trinity College. In 1808 he came tothis country 
under the patronage and guardianship of a Mr. Adamson, his 

a Chiistian Journal No. 3, March, 1830. p. 94. 


maternal uncle, then a respectable merchant of New- York. He 
studied divinity under the late Rev. Edmund Barry, D. D. and was 
ordained deacon by the Rt. Rev. Benjamin Moore, D. D. in 1810. 
He soon after removed to the charge of St. Andrew's Church, 
Coldenham, Orange county, and St. George's Church, Newburgh I 
and in the former, on Tuesday, June 29th, 1813, was admitted 
by the Right Rev. John H. Hobart, assistant bishop of the dio- 
cese, to the holy order of priests. In May, 1 816, he took pastoral 
charge of St. John's Church, Yonkers, and on the 12th of 
July, 1829, settled as assistant minister in this parish, in the 
charge of which he afterwards remained as rector, until the day 
of his death. In connection with his pastoral duties, he main- 
tained for many years, a flourishing school for the education of 
boys, from which many have gone forth, who can bear testimo- 
ny to his excellence and worth. " Mr. Powell (says one who 
knew him for forty-one years) was a most sincere and devoted 
friend. He had all the traits of cordiality, kindness and benev- 
olence, so usually belonging to the best of his countrymen." — 
He departed this life on Sunday, the 29th day of April, 1849, at 
the residence of his brother-in-law, Stephen Cambreling, Esq., in 
Mew- York city. He was the fourth minster that died rector of 
this parish, and the third buried in this town. His remains were 
brought to Westchester, and interred in the grave-yard, on the 
south side of St. Peter's Church. The following is the inscrip- 
tion on his tombstone : — 


On the 29th of April, 1849, 



Rector of the St. Peter's Chureh, 


In the Gist year of his age. 

" Blessed are the dead, •who die in the Lord j (even so saith the spirit) for they 
rest from their labours." 

Church, Wcstchester-Erected A. D. ISiS. 

St. Peter's ( 

Ground plan of St. Peter's Church. 

[To face page 131.] 


The vacancy created by the death of Mr. Powell, the vestry 
proceeded immediately to fill, by electing the 


at that time assistant Minister, to the rectorship, June 2&th, 1849. 
Soon after his entrance on his parish duties, measures were adop- 
ted, for the building of a new parsonage, on the glebe in the place 
of the old one, =• which was effected, at a cost of six thousand 

Active measures have also been taken, for the erection of a new 
parish church, upon or near the? old site, towards which pious 
work fifteen thousand dollars have already been contributed. — 
The work is now under contract. The present Church edifice 
was: erected in 1790, on^the site of the old Church, and conse- 
crated upon the 9th of December, 1795, by the Rt. Rev. Samuel 
Provoost, D. D. bishop of the diocese. It is a neat wooden struc- 
ture, surmounted by a cupola.b The latter contains the origi- 
nal bell, presented to the Church, by Col. Lewis Morris, of Mor- 

Beclory of St. Peter's Church. 

• In 1799, " It was resolved, that the parsonage house and glebe be repaired by 
the Churchwardens as soon as a fund be formed for that purpose." 

■i At a Testry meeting, 17th January, 1793, " It was resolved to build a desk and 
pulpit for the use of the Church, correspondent, with the sonnding board given to 
this Church, by the Corporation of Trinity Church, N. Y." On the 1st of August 
1791, Mr. Samuel Bayard presented the silver ots\. seal, now used by the Vestry. 


risania, in 1706. Round the lip may be traced in capital letters, 
" Lewis JMorris, 1677.'' 

The communion plate consists of a chalice and paten, the gift 
of Queen Anne, A. D. 1706, inscribed :—" Ann^ Regin^." 

This noble lady, who for the Church's sake, once merited the 
name of the "Good Uueen Anne," also presented a church bible, 
book of homilies, cloth for the pulpit, and communion table. 

On the south side of the church, is a plain stone tablet, to the 
memory of Dr. Wilkins. A monument on the north side, re- 
cords the death of his wife.* 

to the memory 
The humble handmaid and 
faithful worshipper 
of God 
her Saviour, • 

* This lady was a sister of Lew^s Morris, a signer of the Declaration of Indepen- 
dence. See Hist, of Westchester, vol. ii. 284. 


She died the 31st of October, A. D. 1810, 

in the 64th year ol her age, 

and lies buried Here. 

This monument in conjugal love 

is raised and 

inscribed, by her grateful, faithful and affectionate 


And now Lord ! what is our hope 1 
Truly our hope is ever in thee. 

In the vestry room are memorials of the Hoffman, Wilkins and 
TurnbuU families. 

To St. Peter's church is attached a portion of the old Glebe, 
which was given by the Town in 1703, consisting of ten acres, 
and a rectory. The former parish house or parsonage, which was 
purchased by the vestry in 1763, stood at no great distance from 
the present edifice. 


dueen Anne, Col. Benjamin Fletcher, Edward Viscount Corn- 
bury, Col. James Graham, Col. Caleb Heathcote, Col. Lewis 
Morris, the Venerable Propagation Society, the Reverend John 
Bartow, the Borough Town of Westchester, Basil Barto^y,* 
Abijah Hammond, George Lorillard, and the Corporation of 
Trinity Church, New- York. The latter have made the fol- 
lowing liberal grants to this Church, viz : in 1795, the sum of 
#750 ; in 1796, $500, and in 1809, five lots of ground in Reade, 
Chamber and Warren streets. New- York. The church still 
owns four of these lots, the present value of which is 
$55,000.'' It de-serves to be mentioned, however, that this 

• Mr. Bartow, by his will dated 16th of Dec. 1780, bequeathed "unto the Min- 
ister, Churchwardens and Vestrymen for the lime being of the Incorporated Church 
of England, known by the name of St. Peter's Church, in the borough Town of 
Westchester, the sum of £50 towards building a new church in said borough 
Town, or repairing or enlarging the present church, for the worship of Almighty 
God, to be paid to them when they shall actually engage in said work." This 
will was proved on the 1 1th of March, 1784. Surrogate's Office, N. Y. Fol. xxiv 

>• " In 1807 the sum of f 1,950 was raised by St. Peter's Church, tendered to, and 
accepted by Trinity Church, for the lots conveyed by their corporation, to the ves- 
try of St. Peter's. One of the above lots was taken by the Corporationof N. Y., for 
widening Chapel St., and the award applied to the erection of gallery pews, and 
the carriage shed. 


parish contributed one half of the original value of the lots. 
The first delegate from this parish to the Diocesan Conven- 
tion in 1790, was Joseph Brown, M. D. 


The churchyard, whic coevalwith the settlement of the 

village, contains numerous interments.^- Among the earliest are 
the following : 

"Here lyeth the body of William , Esq.,aged 50 

years, deceased March 27th, 1702. H. 1718. P. B. o. 1727." 

" In memory of Philip Honeywell, Esq. He died of a linger- 
ing illness, at Greenburgh, on the 8th day of September, 1813, 
in the 53rd year of his age. He was an active character during 
the Revolutionary War. He lived respected and died regretted. 
Anne Eustace, his wife, died May 11, 1811, setat 50." 

" Look on this stone and you will find, 
My journey's o'er, andyour's behind ; 
Think then, before you turn away, 
That yours may end before this day." 


The following names appear on the minutes, of individuals 
who purchased pews in August, 1790, viz. — James Ferris, John 
Bartow, Jr., Philip Livingston, Stephen Bartow, Elizabeth Har- 
rison, John Valentine, Jonathan Fowler, William Hunt, Marcus 
Baxter, Solomon Baxter, Isaac Valentine, Jr., Peter Bussing, 
Elizabeth Williams, Augustus Bartow, David Huestace, Ebene- 
zer Legget, Phinehas Hunt, Anthony Bartow, Israel Underbill, 

• John Ferris, of the Borough Town of Westchester, in his last will, dated 9th 
of May, 1715. directs : "As also the land lying betwixt the Highway that leads to 
Thomas Haden's mill, and the way that leads from Broncke's to Henry Bank's, 
with a fifty pound privilege of commonage, and also all that my land at Broncke's 
containing 24 acres, be it more or less. But, be it provided always, that there shall 
be a rod square, free, for all friends and friendly people to bury their dead in th 
place where they formerly buried, without any let, hindrance, or molestation what 
soever." Surrogates Office, N. Y., folio viii. p. 391. 


Anthony L. Underbill, 2 seats, Israel Underhill, Israel Honeywell, 
John Doty, Robert Tucker, William Smith, Thomas Bartow, 
Benjamin Roe, Joseph Brown, Lewis Graham, Robert Watts, 
John Bartow, Benjamin Ferris, Samuel Bayard, Warren de 
Lancey, 2 seats, Thomas Hunt, John Cox.* 



19 Nov. 1702, Rev. John Bartow, CI. A. M. pr mort. War. and Ves. 

8 July, 1727, Rev. Thomas Standard, 01. A. M. per mort. « 
12 June, 1761, Rev. John Milner, CI. A. M. per resig. ' " 

3 Dec. 1766, Rev. Samuel Seabury, CI. A. M. " « 

2 Jan. 1792, Rev. Theodosius Bartow, Presb. « « 

20 Aug. 1794, Rev. John Ireland, Presb. A. M. " « 

9 Mar. 1799, Rev. Isaac Wilkins, Presb. D. D. per mort. " 
17 April, 1830, Rev. William Powell, Presb. B. A. " « 
28 June, 1849, Rev. Charles D. Jackson, Presb. A. M. present 

* With regard to the rights of pew holders we copy the following from Dr. 
Gregory's speech, (in the Diocesan Convention of W. N. Y.,) advocating the 
resolutions as reported in the Syracuse Daily Star : — " The Trustees of Churches 
have no right to sell pews. If they pretend to give deeds of sale by which pews 
are conveyed in fee to individuals, such deeds are no better than blank paper, 
(see Barbour's Supreme Court Reports, viii., 135.) The only right that can be ac- 
quired, is the right for a compensation to occupy a certain seat during the public 

The Vestry or Trustees retain the right to alter or even destroy the seat for the 
good of the congregation. The seats, therefore, can only be rented or hired for a 
term of years. The lessee has no absolute property, in his pew, and no right to 
shut it up, or to exclude others irom it when not occupied by himself." 

t Extract from the Admission Book of Christ's College, Cambridge, 1689. " Jan. 
31. mo. Joannes Bartow, Thomee filius in lucem editus apud Crediton in Comi- 
tatu Devoniensi Uteris ibidem institutus a Mro. Gregory annos natus sedecem, 
Admissus Sizator sub Mro. Lovett." 



A. D. 1703. Baptisms, 50. 

Communicants, 12. 



























































The Baptismal Register of this Parish commences in 1703. 
March 4th. 1702., then baptized by Mr. John Bartow, Rector of 
West Chester, John Haden, aged 41 years ; John Haden, son 
of said John Haden, aged 17 years ; Abagail Haden, aged 16 
years ; Samuel Haden, aged 13 years ; Thomas Haden, aged 8 
years; Elizabeth Haden, aged 11 years ; Joseph Haden, aged 1 
year and 7 months, (fee, &c. 






Daniel Clarke, 
Charles Glover, 






William Forster, 
Basil Bartow, 





Nathaniel Seabury, 
George Youngs, 
Mr. Gott, 





1719, Number of Scholars, 
1721, « " 




In 1703 the number of families belonging to this Parish, were 
40 or 50. In 1724 they were- computed at 200. 

In 1702, the number of inhabitants were 200. 

" 1712, " " 572. 

" 1840, (prior to its division) 4,154. 

" 1850, (since the division) 2,443 


1695 to 1701. 

Caleb Heathcote, Edward Waters. 

Caleb Heathcote, Josiah Hunt. 

James Graham, Josiah Hunt. 

John Drake, Daniel Clark. 

Henry Fowler, Daniel Clark, ^j] 

John Drake, Josiah Hunt, Sen. 

Josiah Hunt, Sen. John Drake. 

Josian Hunt, Sen. Edmund Ward. 


Daniel Clark, Jeremiah Fowler. 

1710 to 1721. 

Joseph Hunt, Jeremiah Fowler. 

No records from 1721 to 1761. 
Samuel Sneden, John Hunt. 

Isaac Willett, Nathaniel Underbill sen. 


No records from this date, until the close of the war. 
Trustees from 1788 to 1795. 
Israel Underbill, Philip I. Livingston. 

Philip I. Livingston, Israel UnderhiU. 

Israel UnderhiU, Samuel Bayard. 

Israel UnderhiU, Nicholas Bayard. 

Israel UnderhiU, Philip I. Livingston. 

Philip I. Livingston. Israel UnderhiU. 

Israel UnderhiU, Philip I. Livingston. 

Israel UnderhiU, James Morris. 

James Morris, Robert Watts. 

1806-7-8-9-1 0-11-12-13-14. 
Robert Watts, James Morris. 

James Morris, Abijah Hammond. 

James Morris, Joshua Waddington. 


Joshua Waddington. James Morris. 


. James Morris, Joshua Waddington. 


Abijah Hammond^ George Lorillard. 

George Lorillard, Robert Morris. 

Abijah Hammond, Robert Morris. 

Robert Morris, Valentine Nutter. 


Valentine Nutter, Robert Morris. 

1837 to 1840. 
Francis Baretto, Richard Hunt. 

1840 to 1843. 
Francis Baretto, James De Wolfe. 

1843 to 1844. 

Francis Baretto, Robert R. Morris. 

1844 to 1850. 

Francis Baretto, Elnathan Hawkins. 

1850 to 1853. 
Francis Baretto, Gouverneur M. Wilkins. 

SeatoJ St. Peter's Church, presented by Samuel Bayard Usq., A. D. 1791. 





This parish, which formerly included the three townships of 
Rye, Bedford and Mamaroneck, was originally embraced in 
the great purchase of " Ubiequaeshook," or " Weckquaskeck,"* 
made by the Dutch West India Company, of the Indians, in the 
year of our Lord 1640. " In order (says the historian of the 
State) to maintain the character and privileges, of the West 
India Company, Kieft dispatched secretary Van Tienhoven, early 
in the spring of 1640, with instructions to purchase the ' Ar- 
chipelago,' or group of islands, at the mouth of the Norwalk River^ 
together with all the adjoining territory on the main land, and 
to erect thereon, the standard and arms of the High and Mighty 
Lords, the States General ; to take the savages under our protec- 
tion; and to prevent effectually, any other nation encroaching 
on our limits. These directions were executed, and the West 
India Company thus obtained the Indian title to all the lands, 
between Norwalk and the North River, comprehending much 
of the present County of Westchester."'' 

The aborigines however, still continued to maintain posses- 
sion, for in the year 1650, the lands of Rye or Poningoe, were in 
the tenour of "Shanasockwell" or "Shanorocke" (as he subse- 
quently signed his name,) an independent chieftain of theSiwa- 

' Weckquaskeck (in pure Algooquia Weec — q'laes — guck) signifies the place 
of the bark kettle. In the Delaware language Wi — qua — jeek, denotes the head 
of a creek or run. 

' Brodhead's History of the State of New- York, First Period, 1609—1664, p. 296. 


noys, whose clan formed a portion, if not one of the Mohegan 
tribes itself, of the " Seacoast." 

Poningoe, the Indian name of Rye, is supposed to be derived 
from Ponus, the title of an early aboriginal proprietor of this 
territory. The final termination oe or ong, denoting locality. — 
Thus the whole word may emphatically express the place or 
locality, of that sachem's residence. 

It was not until ten years after the provisional arrangement 
of boundaries between New Netherland and New England, by 
Governour Stuyvesant, and the New England Commissioners in 
1650, that a permanent settlement was made in Rye, by a num- 
ber of Puritans from the east. 

On the 29th day of June, 1660, John Coe, Peter Disbrow and 
Thomas Studwell, purchased the Island of Menne wies or Manus- 
sing, of the Indian Sagamore, Shanasockwell and other In- 
dians, for eight coats, seven shirts, and fifteen fathom of w;am- 

To the Island village, its new proprietors gave the name of 
Hastings. Purchases on the main soon followed, and the village 
of Rye was commenced in 1663. 

In the year 1683, Rye was annexed to the Province of New- 
York, but it was not till 1731, that the lines ^between the two 
colonies were established as they now exist. 

The first religious society of Rye was Congregational, at that 
time, the established religion of the Colony of Connecticut. 

" Rye and Westchester," says Humphreys, " as soon as they had 
fixed the civil magistracy, they did establish a public worship 
of God ; and suitable to this prudent, as well as religious proce- 
dure, the Colony throve apace, <fcc. But when the Independents 
found themselves fixed in power, they began to enact a rigid con- 
formity to their manner of worship. Men' of all persuasions but 
their own, were styled opprobiously sectaries, and tho' they had 
declared at first for moderation, and a general liberty of consci- 
ence, they, notwithstanding, banished and drove out of the coun- 
try the Quakers, the Antinommn and Familistical Parties."* 

• An Historical account of the Incorporated Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospal in Foreign Parts, &c. by David Humphreys, D. D. Sec. to the Honorable 
Society. London, printed by Joseph Downing, MDCCXXX. 


" By authority it had been enacted that no persons within the 
colony should embody themselves iu church estate without the 
consent of the general court. The law also prohibited any minis- 
try being attended by the inhabitants, in any plantation distinct 
and separate from that which was established in the place ; ex- 
cept by the approbation of the general court and the neighbouring 
churches. One object of these laws was doubtless to prevent 
Baptists, Episcopalians and others from gaining a foothold."* 

" As early asll660," says the historian Trumbull, " Rye paid taxes 
for the support of religion, although no church was formed, nor 
pastors ordained. Greenwich and Rye, continues the same 
authorily, " were but just come under the jurisdiction of Connec- 
ticut, and not in circumstances for the support of ministers ; they 
had occasional preaching only for a considerable time."'' 

"At a town meeting held in Rye, November I7th, 1670, the 
town made choice of Joseph Horton, Thomas Brown, and John 
Brondig, who are to do their endeavour to procure a minister." 
It was also agreed, for to allow "two pence in the pound for the 
maintenance of a minister amongst us ; that is to say an ortho- 
dox minister."" From the following document, however, it appears 
that the town had not succeeded in procuring a mipister : — " May 
the 11th, 1671, at a Court of Assembly holden at Hartford, Captain 
Nathan Gold, Thomas Fitch, Mr. Holly, Lieut. Richard Olm- 
stead, and Mr. John Burr, they, or any three of them, are desired 
to repair to the said Rye, as soon as may be, and to endeavour 
a comfortable composure and issue of such differences as are 
among the people there, and to use their endeavours in procuring 
a minister, and comfortably settling of him in the plantation of 
Rye. Then the Court doth empower the aforesaid committee to 
agree with a suitable man for that work in that place, and to 
agree with him for maintenance to the value of £40 per annum, 
which the Treasurer, by warrant to the Constable of said Rye, 

• Lambert's History of New Haven, p. 189. 
•> Trumbull's History of Connecticut, p. 300. 

• Town Records of Rye. 


shall order for the gathering and payment thereof with the 
county rate.""- 

On the 8th of October, 1674; the General Court again em- 
powered Captain John AUyn, Mr. James Bishop, Major Robert 
Treat, with Mr. Gold, " to endeavour also the obliging and settling 
of a minister at Rye."'> 

" At a Court, holdeu at Hartford, May 17ih, 1675, Major Nathan 
Gold, Major Robert Treat, and Mr. John Burr were nominated 
and appointed a committee to treat with the inhabitants of Rye 
and those concerned in lands there, and labour to accommodate 
matters, as that there may be suitable encouragement for Mr. 
Prudden to settle in the ministry, and such other suitable inhabi- 
tants with him as may promote the settlement of said town of 
Rye and the ministry therein ; and if they shall find any averse- 
ness or difficulty with the inhabitants or proprietors, in so just 
and necessary publique good of the town, "they are empowered 
to doe what they see meet for the end aforesaid, and make re- 
port to the Court in October next, for approbation ; and for the 
encouragement of the ministry at Rye, this Court, for this year, 
grants them a penny of the pound upon all the ratable estate' 
of their town, to be pay'd out of their county rate, and shall be 
ready as need requires to continue such necessary encourage- 
ment as they shall judge suitable."': 

Upon the 27th May, 1675, the town ordered that the home lot 
of Peter Disbrow, adjoining Timothy Knapp, be taken by the 
town in exchange for the land by the Blind brook, south of 
Jacob Bridge's. The above lot to be for Mr. Peter Prudden for 
a parsonage lot ; if not thus disposed of, this agreement to be 

February 26th, 1676. The town released Peter Disbrow's lot 
and cancelled the above agreement. 

February 26th, 1677. John Brundige and John Purdy, were 
empowered to sell the frame intended for a parsonage house. 
The same year the Rev. Thomas Denham appears to have 

• Hartford Col. Hec. vol. iii. p. 12. 
' Hartford Col. Rec. vol. iii. p. 53. 

• Hartford Col. Rec. vol. iii. p. 59. 


been minister here ; for, June 15th, a house lot is ordered for Mr. 
Thomas Denham, and on the 22d of November, following, we 
find the same individual admitted an inhabitant of the townof 
Rye. " June 21st, 1678, Mr. Thomas Denham is to have all the 
grass on the high-way, at the old town, besides an equal share 
with the proprietors of Poningoe neck." 

March 5th, 1679. " 50 poles of land lying before his door, to- 
ward the brook, are granted to Mr. Thomas Denham, and the 
ensuing year he is to have all the grass on the highway at the 
first of the old town lots ; also £30 allowed for his maintenance."* 
The General Court of Connecticut, on the 14th of October, 1680, 
ordered : " that thirty pounds per annum, agreed by Rye to be 
paid to the mmister, Mr. Denham. shall be gathered by the 
Constable with the County rate, in the same specie and prices 
as the County rat«, and by him to be paid to the said minis- 
ter."'' A. D. 1682, the town confirmed the sum of £30 as a 
salary to Mr. Denham and ordered the same to be paid in pro- 

In 1684, Mr. John Woodbridge was nMnister here ; but he 
must have resigned in 1687 ; for the historian Trumbull, in- 
forms us, that about the year 1688, the Rev. John Bowers, re- 
moved trom Derby, and settled at Rye.« 

■ May 10, 1680 ; " The Town agree to allow £30 to Mr. Thomas Denham, for 
his maintenance, for this year ensueing, and to be gathered in way of rate, pro- 
Tided the said Mr. Denham continue amongst us and preach the Gospel." Town 
Rec. p. 44. March 1681-2. " The Town gave Timothy Knapp, 40 shillings for the 
liberty of his house, to meet in, and for beating of the drum, for the time past." — 
Town Rec. p. 53. June 23. 1681. " The proprietors of Poningoe neck, granted 
to Mr. Thomas Denham, all the moveable grass in the highway, lying by the old 
town, so called, so long as the said Mr. Denham shall continue a preacher of the 
Gospel amongst us, &c. — and £-20 to be paid him, upon the 1st of March, neit 
ensueing this date ; as our maintenance to the minister." Town Rec. p. 54. 

•■ Hartford Col. Rec. vol. iii. p. 59. 

• Trumbull's Hist, of Connecticut, 523. The Rev. John Bowers graduated at 
Harvard College, in 1649. 


April 22d, 1690, Capt. Horton, Joseph Theall, and John Bron- 
dig, were chosen by the Town to procure a minister, and if 
possible, a school master. >»■ 

On the 24th of March, 1693, by an act of General Assembly, 
approved and ratified by and with the consent of the Governour 
of the province, it was ordered, that " there shall be called, in- 
ducted and established, a good, sufficient Protestant minister, to 
officiate and have the care of souls, within one year next, and 
after the publication hereof, that is to say : In the city of New- 
York one ; the county of Richmond one ; in the county of West- 
chester two ; one to have the care of Westchester, Eastchester, 
Yonkers and the manor of Pelham ; the other to have the care 
of Rye, Mamaroneck, and Bedford, <fcc., &ic> 
: On the 27th of June, 1693, Capt. Horton, Joseph Theall, John 
Brondig, Hachaliah Brown, George Lane, and Timothy Knapp, 
were appointed a committee to procure a minister as soon as 
possible." The people doubtless were becoming alarmed, lest 
the Governour should nominate under the new act. 

Upon the 26lh of February, 1694, it was ordered, " that the 
Townsmen make a rate to defray the expense of repairing the 
parsonage house.^ 

Pursuant to the act of Assembly, passed in 1693, a town meet- 
ing was held February 28th, 1694-5, by virtue of a warrant 
granted by Justice Theall ; when George Lane and John Bron- 
dig were elected Churchwardens, and Jonathan Hart, Joseph 
Horton, Joseph Purdy, Timothy Knapp, Hachaliah Brown, 
Thomas Merritt, Deliverance Brown and Isaac Denham, Vestry- 
men, the two last being chosen for Bedford.' 

* "At a Town meeting held in Rye, April 22d, 1690, at which Town meeting 
they did manifest their desire for the procuring of a minister amongst them, and 
in order thereunto, have made choice of Captain Horlon, Joseph Theall, and 
John Brondig, who are to enquire and endeavour the best they can, for the pro- 
viding of a minister for the Town aforesaid" — Town Rec. p. 74. 

'• Laws of New- York, vol. 1. chap, xxxvi. 

• The original resolution reads thus : — " as a committee to take care for the pro- 
curing of a minister, with what speed they can for us." Town Rec. p. 76. 

* Ibid. 

• Ibid. 78. 


" On the 27th of May, 1697, Deliverance Brown, John Frost, John 
Lyon and Jonathan Hart, were chosen in the Town behalf, to 
discourse Mr. Woodbridge, concerning his settling amongst us."a 
The difference among the people, however, in the selection of a 
pastor, appears to have continued, for on the 22nd of July, 1697, 
another committee, consisting of Capt. Theall, Hachaliah Brown, 
George Lane and Thomas Merritt, were chosen by vote, " for the 
procuring of a minister for the town of Rye."i' 

Upon the 16lh of June, A. D. 1701, the act for incorporating 
the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, 
was procured by the Rev. Thomas Bray, D. D., and several others 
who felt a deep interest in the religious welfare of the colonies, 
through the agency of Archbishop Tennison and Bishop Comp- 
ton. The year following, the Rev. John Bartow, was licensed 
by the latter prelate to officiate as a Missionary at Rye. In re- 
gard to this appointment, which had been made at the earnest 
solicitation of the people of Rye, Col. Heathcote writing to the 
Venerable Society, April 10th, 1701, observes : — '-That I did in 
October last, give my Lord of London my reasons for the neces- 
sity of his (Mr. Bartow's) being settled at Westchester, the people 
in that place having been the first in this County, who desired 
a minister of the Church, and being disappointed, might have 
been of ill consequence, for no sooner was Mr. Bartow arrived 
but ye vestry immediately came to me and gave me no rest until 
I consented to use my interest with my Lord Cornbury, to have 
him inducted there, and the inhabitants of Rye supposing West- 
chester was first to be supplied, were easy in that matter, there 
being on one hand no fear of disobliging the people of Rye, and 
on the other great danger of hurting the interest of the Church 
at Westchester ; I desired my Lord Cornbury to induct him 
there &c."o Dr. Humphreys, in his historical account of the 
Society, prior to 1728, says : — " The act of 1693, did not take ef- 
fect till about the year 1702, nor was the provision made there- 

• Town Rec. p. 78. 
' Ibid. 

• See original letter in Westchester Parish. 


by, a sufficient maintenance for the ministers in country towns. 
These applied to the Society for help ; particularly the inhabi- 
tants of Westchester, were very pressing for a minister. Earnest 
memorials were sent from the inhabitants of New Rochelle, from 
those of Jamaica, and Hempstead, towns in Long Island ; from 
Staten Island, and from Rye ; and their desires have been com- 
plied with, and missionaries sent to those places. ^^ 

Mr. Bartow having accepted the call and been inducted to 
Westchester ; the vacant mission of Rye was now offered by 
Bishop Compton to the 


a yougg gentleman in holy orders. He was born in Wales, about 
1672, and descended from the family of the Pritchard's of Camp- 
stone, in Monmouthshire. He was educated, mostpro bably, in 
the University of Cambridge. Mr. Pritchard was pleased to ac- 
cept the appointment, and immediately sailed for New-York, 
where he arrived some time in the month of April 1704. Col. 
Heathcote, the senior warden of the parish, writing to the Vener- 
able Society the 10th of April. 1704, says : — " Since writing the 
former part of this letter, and whilst it was waiting for a passage, 
Mr. Pritchard is arrived, whom my Lord of London has directed 
to officiate in Rye Parish ; he is a promising young gent, and I 
question not, but will, with God's assistance, do great service to 
the Church. He shall not want any thing I can do for him, to 
make his pilgrimage easy, nor my advice which I can give him 
to answer the end of his coming." 

* Humphreys Hist. Account of the Ven. Prop. Society, &c. p. 38. 

*■ The Venerable Thomas Pritchard, Archdeacon of Landaffe, who suffered and 
died under Cromwell's usurpation, was of this family. Walker's sufferings of the 
Clergy. A. D. 11th Nov. 1660, Thomas Pritchard, Subsiz. Mr. Bainbrigg. Ex- 
tract from the Admission Book of Trinity College, Cambridge. Thomas Pritch- 
ard of Trinity College, took his B. A. Degree in 1665, and his M. A. in 1669- 
Another of the same name, also of Trinity Col. received his B. A, degree in 1674, 
and his M. A. in 1678. Lists of Cambridge graduates. The arms of the Pritch- 
ards are :— Barry of six or and az, on a chief of the first three pallets betw. two es- 
quires, base, dexter and sinister, of the second, an innescocheon ar. Crest — an arm, 
ppr., holding a battle axe, handle gu. 


The Rev. John Bartow, writing to the same on the 24th of May, 
1704, says : — " I have only time to tell you that Mr. Pritchard is 
arrived, and fixed at Rye, to the general satisfaction of the people 

The following mandate was issued for his induction by Gov- 
ernor Cornbury, in April 1704 : 


" Edward Viscount Cornbury, Capt. Gen. and Governour in Chief of the Provin- 
ces of New- York, New-Jersey, &c., and Vice Admiral of the same : 

To all and singular Rectors, Vicars, Chaplains, Curates, Clerks and ministers, 
wheresoever constituted in ye said Province of New- York, and also to Caleb 
Heathcote, Esq. and Joseph Theall, Church Wardens of the Parish Church of Rye, 
in the County of Westchester ; I do hereby firmly enjoyne and command that you 
induct and present the Rev. Thomas Pritchard, as Rector to ye Rectory or Parish 
Church of Rye aforesaid, and that you put him in the real, actual and corpo- 
ral possession of the said Rectory or Parish Church of Rye aforesaid, and of all 
the Glebes, Rights, and appurtenances thereunto belonging ; and you are to make 
a return to me of what you shall have done herein. Given under my hand and 
prerogative Seal of ye said Province of New- York, this day of 


The subjoined letter from Col. Heathcote to the Secretary of 
the Venerable Society, shows the deep interest the former took 
in promoting the Church's welfare. 


New- York, 1st June, 1704. 

" I troubled you with a very long letter by the Tirginia Fleet, 

wherein amongst many other of those thoughts, I gave you 

as my opinion for the best means of Propagating the Gospel in 

these parts of the world, that every minister who is sent over 

on that errand, should after having been some time in his Parish 

send the Society an exact list of his Parishioners, distinguishing 

them under three several heads, as first, how many are communi- 

• Doc. Hist, of N. Y. vol. iii. p. 932. 

* " Rye is served by Mr. Pritchard, lately arrived, (a very young manj) here is 
no Church built as yet." N. Y. M. S. S. vol. i. p. 44. 


cants; secondly, howmany come to hear him who are not so; and 
thirdly, those which wholly dissent from the church ; and that 
they should be also directed to use their best endeavours in their 
private conversation with the people, to persuade those who come 
to hear him, which are regular in their lives, and do not receive 
the sacrament, to come to the communion, and to use the like 
diligence in persuading such who where wholly Dissenters, to 
conform, and every six months at least, to give an account what 
progress they make therein, by which means the Society would 
have a true account of the service which is done by those they 
send over. I have since spent some further thought concerning 
that matter, and in my opinion it would be likewise very needfull 
for them to send an accouut of all in their Parish, both young and 
old, which are, and which are not baptized, being strictly order, 
ed to use their best endeavours, to persuade those of riper years 
to come to the baptism, and others which have children to have 
them christened, returning likewise an account of their success 
therein, every six months. It would not likewise be amiss, that 
directions were given, that there should be four quarterly meet- 
ings of the clergy, annually, two in Westchester County, and 
Q,ueens County two; these counties being contiguous ; who by 
their preachings, resolving of doubts, and other ways, would not 
only be of considerable service, but might at those meetings, ta- 
king to their assistance the best of the people, consider of the best 
and most effectual ways to propagate the Church, transmitting 
to the Society an exact account of their proceedings at every 
meeting. — Sir, to be plain and free with you herein, if a more 
than ordinary care be not taken in these matters, to keep those 
gents to their duty, which are sent over, that they may carry on 
that great work with the zeal and earnestness, they ought ; the 
money which is expended thereon will be little better than squan- 
dered away, and in this Itake my measures from what I have al- 
ready observed, and if the Society are pleased to direct accounts, 
to be sent them for the time past, according to the rules I have 
laid down, they will find what I say to be truth. I did in my last, 
acquaint you that I would put forward a school in Westchester 
County, which I hope in a few months to inform you I have done, 


having the promise of an extraordinary good man for a school- 
master, one who is not only very firm to the Church, but I am 
sure will be indefatigable to instill those principles into the youth 
and children, of whom the greatest hopes are, I believe. At first 
setting out it will be attended with some difiiculties, that I beg 
the favour of you to move the Society, that they would be pleased 
(until such time as we , are able to carry it on without help) to 
give us £16 a year, or what they shall think convenient towards 
maintaining of the schoolmaster, and I will take care with the 
blessing of Almighty God, to make it as useful as I can to the 
church, and that satisfactory accounts shall be sent over, how 
the same is employed and what good is done for it; and I pray 
you likewise, to move that some catechisms and prayer books be 
sent over for the scholars. Sir, the people of Westchester county 
are more generally English than they are in any country of the 
government, and although there is not at present, above 2000 souls 
in it, yet it contains a very great body of land, and generally the 
best I have seen in any of these parts. That time will make 
it a very great peopled county, that were the Church with chris- 
tian schools well settled in its minority, it would in future ages 
probably bear no other spirit. 

Sir, I hope you will be pleased to pardon the freedom I have 
taken, and to believe that nothing but my zeal to the church, 
would have made me thus troublesome, and that I am. Sir, 

Your most obedient Servant, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

The school alluded to in the foregoing letter, was soon after 
organized at Rye, and Mr. Joseph Cleator, appointed School- 
master by Col. Heathcote. The Society also at once acted upon 
the request made them, and granted the sum of £15 per annum 
for his maintenance. In 1706-7, " the inhabitants and freehold- 
ers of the towns of Rye and Mamaroneck, in the Province of 
New- York, became humble supplicants to the Lord Bishop of 

• New- York M. S. S. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 30-31-32. (Hawks'.) 


London, that Joseph Cleator, whose affairs required his attend- 
ance in England, might obtain such an allowance from the So- 
ciety, as with what they were able to give him, might encourage 
his return among them, to teach school, for the instruction of 
their children."* 

Mr. Joseph Cleator, after a long and useful service died in 
March, 1732. 

Mr. Pritchard's first report to the Secretary of the Venerable 
Society is as follows : — 


Mamaroneck, 6th June, 1704. 

Honor'd Sir ; 

" Hoping that the extraordinary success wherewith the Al- 
mighty has been graciously pleased to bless my labours and en- 
deavours, during this my short residence in the Province of 
New- York ; will be a motive and inducement for the Illustrious 
and Venerable Society, to extend their generosity and bounty to 
me, as they have been pleased to do to gentlemen or mission- 
aries on the same account ; questioning not of effecting the 
same, so you'l be pleased to communicate this my humble re- 
quest, to that gracious and venerable body ; being my Lord of 
London and other worthy members are pleased to appear in my 
behalf, in that particular, having, in order thereunto, left my 
letter of attorney with Sir Jeffrey Jeffrey's eldest son. The en- 
couragement they are pleased to give gentlemen, on this account, 
being, as I am informed, fifty pound per annum. What is 
settled upon us in this province by an Act of Assembly, is very 
inconsiderate, as being but fifty pound per annum, which falls 
short in the payment of ten pound, so that it will do little more 

• Col. Healhcote writing to the Secretary, 24th Feb., 1707, says—" I have heard 
nothing of Mr. Cleator, so I suppose he is either dead' or hath declined the ser- 
vice." N. Y. M, S. S. See Cor. vol. i. 13. 


than equip a gentleman, considering at what excessive rates 
most things are vended in this province. There, I must not 
omit, as being obliged. thereunto in gratitude, to inform you that 
His Excellency, my Lord Cornbury, is pleased to show an un- 
paralleled and uninterrupted zeal for the carrying on of that 
gr^at and glorious design of propagating the faith, and settling 
the church as well in this, as others of Her Majesty's planta. 
tions, thereby rescuing them from the grossest ignorance, stupid- 
ity, and obstinacy ; and therein righting them in those dam- 
nable and dangerous positions and tenets which have been im. 
bued and instilled into these poor, unwary, deluded souls in their 
minority, by blind, ignorant, and illiterate guides.* The provi- 
.dential care wherewith the Almighty has been graciously 
pleased to agitate that great, glorious, and publick spirited body, 
in seeking the good of souls, will entitle them to a more imme- 
diate immanation of God's glory by being enrolled next to those 
great and glorious martyrs that have been imbrued in their own 
blood, in testimony of the true Catholick and Christian faith 
and a good conscience. 

I pray God to bless that great and glorious body with the 
choicest of his blessings, as well temporal as spiritual. Begging 
leave also, with all imaginable submission, to subscribe myself, 
Honor'd Sir, 

Your most obliged, 
Humble servant, 

Thomas Pritchard."'' 

In a summary account of the state of the church in the Pro- 
vince of New York, as it was laid before the Clergy, convened 

a Madame Knight, in her Journal, Dec. 1704, records the following : " From 
Merrinak we came to Horse Neck, where we iaited, and they told me that one 
Church of England parsan officiated in all those three towns, ( Mamaroneck, Rye 
and Greenwich,) once every Sunday, in turns, throughout the year ; and that 
they all could but poorly maintain him, which they grudged to do, being a poor 
and quarrelesome crew as I understood by our host. Their quarreling about thei'' 
choice of a minister they chose, to have none, but caused th e Government to send 
this gentleman to them. Here we took leave of York Government, &c.'' 

^ New- York M. S. S. from Archives, at Fulham, vol. i. p. 20. (Hawks'.) 


at New York, October the 5th, 1704, &c.,it was stated, that "at 
Rye, of which the Rev. Thomas Pritchard is Rector, there is no 
church, but the minister preaches in the town house. The par- 
ishes divided into three districts, viz.. Rye, Bedford, and Mama- 
roneck. There is a salary of £50 per annum, established by 
Act of Assembly. The number of communicants are consider- 
ably increased since the first celebration of the Sacraments, <fec.a 
In a letter to the Secretary, about five months after the pre- 
ceding, Mr. Pritchard thus writes : 


Rye, November \st, 1704. 

Honor'd Sir : 

" It was no small pleasure and satisfactionto me to experience 
in a short time after my arrival, that the Almighty was gracious- 
ly pleased to succeed my preaching and poor endeavours, as to 
influence my auditors minds to so good an approbation of those 
two grand and indispensable duties, viz. : — Baptism and the 
Lord's Supper, notwithstanding others who were prejudicely 
aversed to them, absented themselves, calling the Cross in bap- 
tism, popery and downright idolatry. Others, our Liturgy, the 
gaggling of geese. Nay, they cast all the calumnies and asper- 
sions imaginable upon our most pure and Apostolick Church, as 
being prompted thereto by their blind and illiterate guides, as 
they are pleased to denominate them ; now, seeing the Almighty 
has been plesased to open their eyes, so as to see the ill conse- 
quence and tendency of such pernicious assertions. Their pas- 
tors, as they intimated to me, did never inculcate to them the 
indispensable duty of receiving the blessed Sacrament, nor never 
could explain those texts of Scripture that were proposed them, 
and being so far from explaining them, that they were embar- 
rassed with more amazing intricacy's ; but, having since, fre- 
quent conferences with those persons, and answering their fool- 

• Church Record, vol. i, No, 15. Rev. Francis L. Hawks', D. D., Editor. 


ish objections, I have had' (the Lord be praised) the good success 
of bringing many of them over, and I question not, (God being 
my help) but to bring more in time, to a good liking and ap- 
probation of both our Church and its discipline, esteeming it the 
only pure Church in the world. What steps and progress have 
been made hereto, are mostly owing to his Excellency, Lord 
Cornbury's influence and encouragement to us, the Attorney 
General being also very zealous for the thorough settlement 
of the Church. Hoping, therefore, Honor'd Sir, that the Society 
will be pleased to allow me £50 per annum, which is allowed 
Mr. Bartow and other Missionaries, otherwise, I design, (God 
willing) to return by next conveniency, being I can't make above 
£30 per annum of the £50 which is settled by an Act of As- 
sembly, it being paid in corn and other country pay, as they 
call it. So that we are at great charge in paying for the car- 
riage to New- York, in order to have it sold there, besides 12d 
per pound that's allowed the Collector, and a great part of the 
people are so very poor as to be incapacitated to pay their pro- 
portions, though otherwise very willing thereto. I perceive 
by the account of the Society, that one Mr. Stuart is recom- 
mended to Bedford, and £50 per annum allowed him, whereas 
Bedford is a part of my parish, as settled by an Act of Assem- 
bly, so that he can't be inducted there. Hoping therefore, that 
the Society will be so condescendingly pleased to allow it me, as 
also to send per next conveniency, the £15 worth of books of 
which mention is made in the account. The Society would do 
very well, if in their great wisdom they think it fit, to recom- 
mend Mr, Stuart to Hempstead, upon Long Island, where they 
stand very much in need of a minister, and complain very much 
for a churchman, it being the best place in the Province of New- 
York, and the best affected for the Church. I design, (God wil- 
ling) to preach there frequently, in order to continue them in a 
good opinion of our Church till a minister comes. Mr. Vesey, 
Minister of the English Church in New- York, as also the people 
of Hempstead, have been very pressing upon me to remove 
there, telling me that my Lord Cornbury would willingly con- 
sent thereto for my advantage, as having a great kindness for 


me, but I shan't give occasion to my Lord of London to be dis- 
pleased at me. I'll rest contentedly here, so that the Society be 
pleased to allow me £50 per annum as is allowed Mr. Bartow, 
who is minister in the same county. The county is divided 
between Mr. Bartow and myself by an Act of Assembly, he 
having the care of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers, and 
New Rochelle, and I the care of Rye, Bedford, and Mamaro- 

I am. Honoured Sir, 

Your most obedient. 

And most humble servant, 
> Thomas Pritchard."* 

The following letter, written nearly four months after the fore- 
going, shows how much the infant parish was suffering through 
the imprudence and neglect of the Rector ; who resided in New 
Rochelle, six miles from Rye ; — 


Manor of Scarsdale, Feb. 26th, 1704-5. 


" I gave you the trouble of three letters, one by the Virginia 
Fleet, and two direct from this Port, one whereof went by Capt. 
Davison, and the other by Capt. Rogers, and shall hope they 
have all reached your hands, which I should be glad to hear. I 
did therein give you the trouble of so full an account, concern- 
ing Church affairs, in this part of the Government, that I have 
nothing now to add, save taking the freedom to give you my 
opinion concerning Mr. Muirson ; who was schoolmaster at New- 
York for some time, and went home in the Jersey : in order to 
qualifie himself to be an assistant to Mr. Vesey, and to return 
into his former station. As to that gentleman, according to my 
best observation of him, his behaviour was exceeding well : but 
how it has happened I know not, most of the leading men in the 

New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 59. 60. (Hawks'.) 



,city are violently bent against him ; that in my opinion it will 
by no means be adviseable to send him there, but if he returas 
to this Province, the best service he can do the church, will be 
to go to Staten Island, where there is an establishment of £40 a 
year, by Act of Assembly. I did in my last, which went by Capt, 
Rogers, acquaint you how uncommonly unhappy and unfortunate 
we were in Mr. Pritchard, who had during his stay, totally ruined 
the interest of the church in this Parish ; his management is so 
strange and unaccountable, that but barely to relate what that 
Gentleman does not blush to do, looks more like malice than a 
, true account of things. Idoassureyouhehasnot for near a quar- 
ter of a year now past, preached four sermons in any part of his 
Parish, nor scarcely been there in all that time; he living at a 
public house in a french town called New Rochelle, about 6 miles 
from his church, that being so intolerably careless of his flock, 
the people some not knowing of it, and others bding enraged, 
that when he preaches, nobody will come to hear him. I am 
extremely concerned for this great misfortune, and I hope God 
will in his due time make better provision for us. Sir, I most 
heartily beg pardon for all the freedom I have taken in this and 
my former letters, and that you would believe that I am firm and 
zealous, for the service of the Church, and 


Yours, (fcc, <fec., 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

The unfortunate Mr. Pritchard, terminated his earthly career 
some time in March or April, 1705, about a year after his set- 
tlement at Rye. In June, 1704, he had married Anna Stuyves- 
ant, daughter of Nicholas William, and grand-daughter of the 
illustrious Peter Stuyvesant, but died without issue and intes- 
tate, leaving his wife his heir at law. Mrs. Pritchard died in 
1759, at the age of nearly 74 years. 

• New-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 71. 72, (Hawks'.) 



" Edward Viscodnt Cornbury, Captain General, and Governour-in-Chief of the 
Provinces of New- York, New-Jersey, and of allt he territories and tracts of land 
depending thereon in America, and Vice Admirall of the same, &c. to Anne 
Pritchard, widow and relict of Thomas Pritchard, late of the province of New- 
York, Clerk, deceased, sendeth greeting. Whereas ye said Thomas Pritchard so as 
aforesaid deceased, lately dyed intestate, having while he lived, and at the time 
of his death, goods, chatties andcreditts in divers places within this province : by 
means whereof the full disposition of all and singular the goods, rights, and 
creditts of the said deceased, and the granting the administration of them ; also, 
the hearing the account, calculation or reckoning of said administration, and 
the final discharge and dismission from the same, unto me solely, and not unto 
a.^y other inferior Judge, are manifestly knowne and belong. I desireing that 
the goods, rights, and creditts of the said deceased may be well and faithfully ad- 
ministered, and converted, and disposed of to pious uses, do grant unto you, the 
said Anne Pritchard, in whose fidelity in this behalfe I very much confide, full ' 
power by the tenour of these presents to administer the goods, chatties, and 
creditts of the said deceased and faithfully to dispose of them ; also to ask, collect, 
levy, recover, and receive the creditts whatsoever of thfi said deceased, which unto 
the said deceased while he lived and at the time of his death did belong, and to pay 
the debts which the said deceased stood obliged, so far forth as ye goods, rights and 
creditts ol the said deceased can thereunto extend, according to their rate, chiefly 
of will, and truly administering ye same and of making a true and perfect Invent- 
ory of all and singular the goods, chatties and creditts of the said deceased, and 
exhibiting the same unto ye Registry of the Prerogative Court of the said pro- 
vince of New- York, in the Secretary's Otflce, at or before ye thirteenth day of 
August next ensuing, and of rendering a just and true account of said adminis- 
tration att or before the thirteenth day of February then next following, being duly 
and lawfully sworne upon the Holy Evangelist of Almighty God ; and I do or- 
daine, depute, and constitute you, the said Anne Pritchard, administratrix of all 
and singular the goods, rights, and creditts of the said deceased. 

In tkstimony whereof, I have caused the Prerogative Scale of the said pro- 
vince of New- York, to be hereunto affiixt att New-YorJi, this 13th day of Febru- 
ary, 1705-6.'" 

The rectorship having become vacant by the death of Mr. 
Pritchard, was filled by the appointment of the 


This individual was a native of Scotland, and descended 

' Record of Wills, Surrogate's Office, N. Y., vol. vii, p. 237. 


from the Munson's of Anchorfield, a branch of the ancient 
family of the Mures of Caldwell, who were originally 
seated at Polkelly, near KilmarnocR, in Ayrshire.^ The 
name occurs, written at various periods, More,Mure, Muir, Moor, 
&c. The termination son being an addition to the ancient pa- 
tronymic. Mr. Muirson was born about the year 1675, and educa- 
ted most probably, in one of the colleges of the north part of Scot- 
land. He appears to have commenced his career of usefulness as 
a teacher ; for in 1703 he was sent over to this Province, by the 
Venerable Society, as their schoolmaster at Albany. When 
Lord Cornbury established a latin free school in New- York, he 
appointed Mr. Muirson master, " who for some time discharged 
that function with approbation and success.''^ Jn 1704 he was 
spoken of as assistant to the Rev. William Vesey, rector of New- 
York. He was also a candidate for the office of catechist in that 
city. The Rev. Evan Evans, of Philadelphia, thus recommends 
this valuable and zealous man, in a letter to the Bishop of Lon- 
don, from which the following is an extract : — " October 17lh, 
1704, this comes by the hands of the ingenious Mr. GeorgeMuir- 
son to receive holy orders from your Lordship, by the approba- 
tion of his Excellency, my Lord Cornbury. I find that he is very 
well beloved and esteemed by all sorts of people, a man of a very 
sober and blameless conversation. He seems to be endued with 
great humility of mind, and has the character of being very pru- 
dent in his conduct. I give him this recommendation not to 
gratify himself, nor any body else, but because I sincerely be- 
lieve he may be very instrumental of doing m^uch good in the 
church." Lord Cornbury writing the same year says of him : — 
" he was sent over to be schoolmaster at Albany" — "he is now 

* Sir Reginald More or Mure, of Abercorn and Cowdams, appears to have been 
Chamberlain of Scotland, as early as 1329. The lands of Cowdams, in Ayrshire, 
belonged to him previously to 1328, as shown by an agreement concerning them, 
between him and the Monks of Paisley, dated in that year. The arms of the 
Murison's of Anchorfield are : — Ar. three Moor's heads, couped sa, banded az. 
a bordure, engr. gu. Crest — Three Moor's heads conjoined in one head, ppr. 
banded az. Motto — Mediocriter. 

' Mr. Muirson's License to keep school in New- York, bears date 25th of April, 
1704. Albany Rec. vol. a. 5. 


going into England in hopes of being admitted into holy orders. 
I shall be glad he might be dispatched hither early in the spring.''^ 
He was also bearer of the Governonr's dispatches. The church- 
wardens and vestrymen of Braintree, in New England, by letters 
also to the Bishop of London, October 19, 1704, give their testimo- 
nials to Mr. George Muirson, returning into England to receive 
holy orders."b Mr. Vesey writing to the Bishop of London, on the 
26th of October, says : — " Mr. George Muirson, a sober, ingenious 
man designs, God willing, to receive holy orders, and is recom- 
mended by my Lord Cornbury, and the Rev. Clergy conven'd 
at New- York."" 

Furnished with such credentials, Mr. Muirson embarked 
for England, and readily received ordination from the hands 
of the Right Rev. Henry Compton, D. D., Bishop of Lon- 
don. In the spring of 1705, he once more sailed for America, 
and arrived in New- York on the 19th of July, following. Scon 
after his arrival, he was appointed by Governour Cornbury to 
Rye, and the following mandate issued for his induction. 


" Edward's Illustrissim's Vice Comes Comburie provinciae Novi Eboraci nee usu 
Novas Cesarias in America strategus & Imperator, ejusdemq's Vice Thalassiar- 
cha &c. Universis & singulis Rectoribus Vicar' & Capellas, Curat'. Clericis 
& ministris quibuscumq's in pr totam provinciam, ubilibet consitutis actiam 
Ecclesise parochialis de Rye, Mamerenoclc Sc Bed- 
ford pro hoc Tempore Edilibus salutem. 

Cam Dilect, in Christo Georgium Muirson Cleric', ad Rectoriam, sive Eccle- 
siam parochialem prajdict Paroch' de Rye Mamerenock & Bedford in Die. 
Provinc. Nov. Eborac. in America. Jam vacantem, praesentatum, Rectorem 
ejusdem Rectoriee, sive Eeclesiae parochialis in & de eadem Institus,. vobis con- 
junctim & Divisim Com'itto, & fermiter Injungendo, mando, quatenus eun- 
dem Georgium Muirson Cleric. Sive procuratorem suum, Legitimum ejus no- 
mine, & pro eo, in realem, actualem & Corporalem possessionem ipsius Rec- 
toriffi'sive Eeclesiae parochialis de Rye, Mamerenock and Bedford, Predict. 

• Printed Abstracts of Van. Soc. 

>■ New- York M3S. from Archives at Pulham, vol. i. 50. (Hawks'.) 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham. (Hawks'.) 


Glebarum, Jurumq's & pertinentium suor' universor', conferatis, Inducatis 
Inducive facialis, & defendatis Inductum, & quid in pr. missis me aut ili- 
um in hac parte Competent', quemcunq's debite (cum ad id congrue' fueritis 
requisti) certidcetis, sai sic, certificet, ille vestrum qui praesent hoc mandatum 
aerit Executus. Dasub sigil Praerogal's. Diet Provinciae Nov. Eborac Tri- 
cesimo primo die Juli, salutis millesimo sept, ingentesimo auinto Anno. 

By His Excellency's command. 

WILL. ANDERSON, Dep'rj Secretary." 


Aug't 20 mo. Dec. 1705. 
" Virtute suprascripti Instrumenti ego Grul. Vesey Induxi Rev'um Dom' Muir- 
son in Eccl'am. Paroch'em. de Rye, Maranock & Bedford &c. Gul. Vesey, Wit- 
ness, Caleb Heathcote, Joseph Theale."* 

On the 22nd of November, 1705, Governour Cornbury writes to 
the Secretary, that : — " Mr. Muirson is settled at Rye, in ye 
room of ye unfortunate Mr. Pritchard, deceased, where I hope he 
will do a great deal of good for ye people, and he agree very 

The day previous to the above date, Mr. Muirson closed his 
first report to the Venerable Society. 


New-York, Rye, Nov. 2\st, 1705. 

Much Honoured Sir, 

" The vessel in which I sent my last being taken, I presume 
(according to your desire) to give a brief account of my own cir- 
cumstances, with ye state of my Parish, viz : when I arrived 
at New-York with a resolution to settle in the city, my Lord 
Cornbury, for the good" of the Church, ordered me to supply the 
place of Mr. Pritchard, minister of Rye. 

I have officiated in this Parish ever since my arrival, ye 19th 
of July, and blessed be God, have had happy success in my 

* Surrogate's Office. N. Y. H. Lib. vii, 210. 

* New- York, MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 83 to 86. (Hawks'.) 


ministry, for notwithstanding the Parish lies bordering upon New- 
England, where the enemies of the Church are numerous ; yet I 
have a very great congregation every Sunday, and they are my 
constant hearers, who never were in a church of England con- 
gregation before, and tho' they are a people made up almost of all 
persuasions, I thank God who hath made me an instrument of 
admitting eighty persons, young and old into ye Church by 
baptism. There are some hundreds in this Parish that are not yet 
baptized, some of whom I have, and ye rest in time I hope 
I shall persuade to consider ye necessity of that holy sacra- 
ment. It is divided into three towns, Rye, Bedford and Mama- 
roneck, mostly of ye Independent pursuasion, lately an Inde- 
pendent minister hath removed out of it, which I am assured 
■will be of great ad van tage to y e Ch urch. By the aid and assistance 
of ye good Colonel Heathcote, I have pursuaded the Parish to 
build a stone church, which will be finished next spring, so that 
we shall want pulpit cloaths and furniture for ye communion 
table. Common prayer books and expositions upon ye church 
catechism, with other small useful books, are very much want- 
ed; in this we hunibly address the Honourable Society for supply. 
I have lately been in ye Government of Connecticut, where I 
observei some people well affected to ye church, for those that 
are near, come to my parish on Sabbath days, so that I am as- 
sured an itinerant Missionary might do great services in that 
Province, some of their ministers have privately told me that 
had we a Bishop among us, they would conform and receive 
Holy Orders, from which as well as on all ye Continent, ye ne- 
cessity of a Bishop will plainly appear. 

Yours, (kc. &c., 

George Muirson."* 

This letter shows how early the spiritual condition of the 
province of Connecticut had attracted Mr. Muirson's attention ; 
and we shall see by his subsequent reports, that he was frequent- 

• New- York, MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 81. 82. (Hawks'.) 


ly in the habit of going there, " holding services, preaching, bap- 
tizing, and distributing prayer bookstand devotional works. On 
these expeditions he was invariably accompanied by Col. Heath- 
cote, they rode on horseback with their saddle-bags full of books ; 
and the Colonel always went fully armed, as in those tolerant 
times it was as much as a man's life was worth even to talk of 
the Church in Connecticut, without the means of self defence. 

Col. Heathcote was the leading man at that time in Westches- 
ter county, and one of the most influential persons in the Prov- 
ince. His manor comprehended a great part of Mr. Muirson's 
parish, of which he was one of the first wardens, and for a time 
its chief supporter. — He was the richest man in the county, and 
an ardent churchman. To his efforts and to his means, does 
Westchester county owe nearly every one of her ancient parish- 
es, now among the oldest in the United States. He was one of 
the petitioners for the charter of Trinity Church, New- York, in 
1697, a liberal contributor to its construction, and his name 
heads the list of its first vestry. 

Ho was elected a member of the Venerable Society, for the 
Propagation of the Gospel, in 1704 ; and he and his friend, Col. 
Morris, Governour of New Jersey, were, it is believed, the first 
persons in America who received that hono»ir. 

To Col. Heathcote's influence, cordial cooperation, and perso- 
nal participation in his labours, did Mr. Muirson owe, under God, 
the success he met with in Connecticut. In fact, the method 
adopted by Mr. Muirson, in building the Church in that Colony, 
originated with Col. Heathcote ; whose object in establishing 
Churches in Westchester was two-(oid, first : to ground the 
Church well in that county : and secondly, to act upon Connec- 

The following letter of the Colonel, to the Secretary of the 
Venerable Society, not only proves these facts, but gives a lively 
picture of Connecticut and its inhabitants, nearly a century and 
a half ago, and of the spiritual darkness which then enveloped 
that Colony." 



Manor of Scarsdale, Nov. 9th, 1705. 

"I am indebted to you for yours of the 11th Jan. and 9th of 
April, and am wonderfully surprised that the Society should 
make choice of me for one of their members. It was a very 
great satisfaction to me, that any thing I could offer was accep- 
table to them, and should very joyfully embrace any opportu- 
nity of doing service to the church, and I bless God for it I am 
notconscious to myself of ever having slipt one fair occasion 
therein, when government would give me leave. I beg of you, 
sir, to present my most humble duty to that honourable body, 
and thank them for the honour they have been pleased to dome, 
and may assure them that I shall not only endeavour to give them 
satisfaction as to any thing they shall desire of me ; but if any 
new matter occurs, which I believe may be of service to the 
Church, I will not fail laying it before them for their considera- 
tion. If I mistake not, the several heads you desire satisfaction 
of, in both your letters now before me, are, first : an exact and 
impartial account of all your Ministers. Secondly: what fruit 
may be expected from Mr. Moor's mission. Thirdly : what 
my thoughts are of sending Mr. Dellius into those parts again. 
Fourthly : my opinion of the Society's having appointed that 
good man, Mr. Elias Neau, as Catechist to the Negroes and In- 
dians, and the cause of misunderstanding betwixt him and Mr. 

As to the first, I must do all the gentlemen which you have 
sent to this province, that justice as to declare, that a better clergy 
were never in any place, there being not one amongst them that 
has the least stain or blemish as to his life or conversation, and 
though I am not an eye witness to the actions of any, save those 
in this county, yet I omit no opportunity of inquiring into their 
behaviour, both of the friends and enemies of the Church, and 
they all agree as to the character of the gentlemen ; and that 
they use their best endeavours to gain over the people : and as 
to their diligence in the faithful discharge of their trust, the So- 


ciety, I hope, will, in their instructions, have laid down such 
rules as they won't fail coming at it without being imposed on. 
Mr. Urquhart, minister of Jamaica, has the most difficult task 
of any missionary in this government, for although he has not 
only the character of a very good man, but of being extraordina- 
ry industrious in the discharge of his duty; yet he having a 
Presbyterian meeting house on the one hand, and the Quakers 
on the other, and very little assistance in his Parish, except from 
those who have no interest with the people, that his work can't 
but go on very heavily, as I understand it does : but Mr. Thom- 
as, of Hempstead, having better assistance, the leading men in 
his parish not being disgusted, are helpful in the work ; and 
having no other sectaries to oppose him by their meetings but 
the Quakers, makes very considerable progress, as 1 have been 
told by some of the most sensible of his parish. As for Mr. 
Mackenzie, he has a very good report from the people of Staten 
Island, and I shall-not fail making further inquiry concerning 
him, and let you know it in my next. 

But when all is done, what I can tell you concerning any 
minister, except in this county, is only by information from others, 
which IS often very uncertain ; for some gentlemen may many 
times, and very deservingly, have a fair and good character by 
the generality of their neighbours, and yet at the same time, by 
one misfortune or other, not perform much of the service of the- 
Church, in which I will give you this plain instance. 

There is not any gentleman whom the Society have sent over, 
that is clothed with a fairer character than Mr. Bartow, of West- 
chester, and truly he is a very good and sober man, and is ex- 
tremely well liked and spoken of by his parishioners in general ; 
yet although he has been three years in that parish, not many 
are added to the communion, nor baptized, and few catechised; 
and if he is directed to send an account how he has advanced 
on each of these heads, annually since his coming there, it will 
be found accordingly. For this and many other reasons, I can't 
help still to be pressing that the Society should lay the gentlemen 
which are sent over, under exact rules, and methinks it is no 
difficult matter to have it ordered so as to know almost as well 
what is done as if they were present in every parish. 


The people of Westchester were very angry with me because 
-I was for having this county divided into three parishes, and 
every minister to have 701 ; instead of 501., and I had brought the 
county, except that place, to a willingness to have it so, as I 
formerly acquainted you ; and had they permitted that projec- 
tion to have taken place, it would have been a great ease to the 
Society : for first, what Mr. Bartow had more than the 501., he 
now bath, might reasonably have been deducted at home. Sec- 
ondly, Mr. Bondet would have been provided for ; and thirdly, 
one Mr. Morgan, who was minister of Eastchester, promised me 
to conform : that there would not have been occasion of another 
being sent to us, and by that means have saved 501. a year more 
at home, and wholly out of all hopes of any dissenting minister 
getting footing amongst us, and it will never be well until we 
are in three parishes ; and I shall not fail, when I have a fair op- 
portunity, to push for it again ; and to satisfy you of the reason- 
ableness in what I offer, I believe there has not six public taxes 
been laid on this county by the Assembly this fifteen years past, 
but I have been at the proportioning of, and when the places in 
Rye parish pay 501. the towns in Westchester parish were allot- 
ted 120^. ; and there are two places more, which, both together, 
are one third part as big as Rye parish, which are now in nei- 
ther of them. And now I am on this subject, it comes in course 
to make out what I told you in my former letters, viz : that there 
is no parish in the government but what is able to pay twice as 
much as they do. For Rye parish which is not by one half so 
large as the least parish established by law in the government 
here, since my living here, maintained two dissenting ministers, 
viz : one at Rye and Mamaroneck, and one at Bedford, and gave 
the former 501. and the latter iOl. a year, which I think makes 
it out very plain what I have offered on that head ; and you may 
be assured that I shall omit no opportunity of serving the Socie- 
ty therein ; but the work must be done, in a great measure by 
the minister's taking pains, and bringing the people into a good 
opinion of the Church, for though the reason hereof is very plain, 
it must be a business of time to effect it. We have had it report- 
ed that the Q-ueen would be at the charge of maintaining a Suf- 


fragan Bishop ia these parts. If that was granted, I question 
not but a great many who have had their education in Boston 
College would conform, and would be content with the benefi- 
ces as settled by Assembly, without being very burthensome 
to the Society. 

I have been so long wandering from one subject to another, 
that I had almost forgot to give you my thoughts of Mr. Muir- 
son, whom my Lord of London has sent for this parish. He has 
been here about three months, in which time he hath by much 
outdone my expectation ; having very fully retrieved all that 
unfortunate gentleman, Mr. Pritchardlost ; and if he continues so 
faithful in the discharge of his trust, of which I have not the 
least doubt but he will, he'll be able to give as large account of 
his services as any that has been sent over to this Province ; and 
I must do him the justice to own, that he is as deserving of the 
Society's favours. For as some of his parishioners told me, and 
which I know in a great measure to be true, that although they 
have had a great many ministers amongst them since the settle- 
ment of their town, yet Mr. Muirson did more good amongst them 
the first six weeks after his coming, than all they ever had be- 
fore; and I question not, but when you have the particulars of 
his proceedings transmitted, you will find what I have said of 
him to be true. As for Mr. Brooks, whom the Society have sent 
to the Jerseys, he has an uncommon good character given him 
from those parts; and it is reported of him th^t he makes won- 
derful advances for the service of the Ohurcn, and 1 question not 
but Col. Morris will be very particular concerning him — that 
being properly his watch. For though that Province is not 
above 50 miles from my house, and Staten Island about forty, 
yet by reason of the difficulty of water passages, I have 
never been at either of them above twice since my coming to 
America ; and I am now more tied at home with a family and 
my private affairs than formerly, for which I humbly crave an 
allowance. My principles and natural temper lead me to do the 
Church all the service I can everywhere, but I dare not promise 
for more than this county at present, and my best endeavours in 
the westernmost towns in Connecticut colony, when the Church 
is well rooted here ; and it has always been my opinion, and 


is so s'till, that there is no part of this Province, or even America, 
that would be of greater use or' service to have the Church 
thoroughly settled in ; for it is not only large in extent, and the 
land very good, and near the city ; so, consequently, will in time 
be a great settlement. But bordering on Connecticut there is 
no part of the continent from whence the Church can have so 
fair an opportunity to make impressions upon the dissenters in 
that government, who are settled by their laws from Rye parish 
to Boston colony, which is about 35 leagues, in which there are 
abundance of people and places. As for Boston colony, I never 
was ill it, so can say little to it. But for Connecticut, I am, and 
have been pretty conversant ; and always was as much in all 
their good graces as any man ; and now I am upon that sub- 
ject, I will give you the best account I can of that colony. It con- 
tains, in length, about 140 miles, and has in it about 40 towns, 
in each of which there is a Presbyterian or Independent minis- 
ter settled by their law ; to whom the people are all obliged to 
pay, notwithstanding many times they are not ordained ; of 
which 1 have known several examples. The number of people 
there, are I believe, about 2,400 souls. They have abundance 
of odd kind of laws to prevent any dissenting from their church ; 
and endeavour to keep the people in as much blindness and un- 
acquaintedness with any other religion as possible; but in a 
more particular manner the Church, looking upon Fler as the 
most dangerous enemy they have to grapple withal ; and abund- 
ance of pains is taken to make the ignorant think as bad as pos- 
sible of her ; and I really believe that more than half the people 
in that government, think our Church to be little better than 
the Papist ; and they fail not to improve every little thing against 
us ; but I bless God for it, the Society have robbed them of their 
best argument, which was the ill lives of our clergy that came 
into these parts ; and the truth is. I have not seen many good 
men but of the Society's sending ; and no sooner was that 
honourable body settled, and those prudent measures taken 
for carrying on of that great work, but the people of Con- 
necticut, doubting of maintaining their ground without some 
further support, |they with great industry went through 


their colony for subscriptions to build a college at a place 
called Seabrook ; and the ministers who are as absolute 
in their respective parishes, as the Pope of Rome, argued, prayed, 
and preached up the necessity of it ; and the passive obedience,, 
people who dare not do otherwise than obey, gave even beyond 
their ability. A thing which they call a college was prepared 
accordingly, wherein, as I am informed, a commencement was 
made about three or four months ago. But notwithstanding 
their new college here, and an old one in Boston, and that every 
town in that colony has one, and some two ministers, and have 
not only heard them say, but seen it in their prints, that there 
was no place in the world where the gospel shone so brightly, 
nor that the people lived so religiously and well as they ; yet I 
dare aver, that there is not a much greater necessity of having 
the christian religion in its true light preached anywhere than 
amongst them. Many, if not the greatest number of them, being 
little better than in a state of heathenism ; having never been 
baptized nor admitted to the communion. And that you may 
be satisfied what I tell you herein is not spoken at random, nor 
grounded on careless observation, Mr. Muirson's parish is more 
than three fourths of it composed of two towns, viz : Rye and 
Bedford, which were first settled unde; the colony of Connecti- 
cut, and of the people bred and born under that government ; and 
some time before my coming, had a minister, one Mr. Denham, 
and had afterwards two more, Woodbridge and Bowers, at Rye, 
and one Mr. Jones, at Bedford ; and the people of Rye only had 
of this county the care to provide a parsonage house ; and not- 
withstanding all those great shows of religion, and that at such 
times as they were destitute of a minister. 

Greenwich and Stamford, the bounds of the former of which 
places join upon theirs, and the other is not above ten miles dis- 
tant, where they were always supplied. But they could not be 
said to want the opportunity of having the sacraments admin- 
istered to them, yet I believe 20 of them had never received the 
communion, nor half of them been baptized, as Mr. Muirson will 
more fully inform you. And now I have given you an account 
of the state of that colony, what will in the next place be natur- 


ally expected from me ; is to know my opinion of the best and 
most probable way of doing good amongst them. 

There is nothing more certain, than that it is the most diffi- 
cult task the Society have to wade through. For the people are 
not only not of the church, but have been and are trained up 
with all the care imaginable to be its enemies. That to make 
an impression under all those disadvantages is very difficult, 
though I hope not impossible ; and though, at first view, the 
prospect of doing any good upon them is very little, yet no doubt 
but the most proper measures ought to be taken, leaving the event 
to Almighty God. 

Now, to give you my thoughts in what way this great work 
may best be endeavoured at, so as it may be done with little ex- 
pense. I believe, for the first step, the most proper way would 
be, that one of the ministers in this country were directed by my 
Lord of London to inform himself where there are any in that 
government that profess themselves to be of the church, and to 
know if they or any ot their neighbours have any children to bap- 
tize, or desire to partake of the sacrament ; and that he will 
come to the towns where they live, and after having given them 
a sermon, will perform those holy rites. There need, I think, 
no more be done in this matter for the present. But the Socie- 
ty may, if they please, leave the rest to me, and I won't only 
give him the best advice and directions I can therein, but will, 
God willing, wait upon him in his progress, and persuade some 
useful friends along with me. And when this essay has been 
made, I shall bs much better able to ^uess at the state of that 
government, and what is fitting to be done next. Now the per- 
son that I. would advise them to pitch upon by all means for 
this expedition, is Mr. Muirson, he being not only posted next 
those parts, and so will look less like design, but he has a very 
happy way nf delivery, and makes littlp use of his notes in preach- 
ing, which is extremely taking amongst those people; and for 
argument, few of his years exceed him. 

The chief end I have in this projection, is to have the people 
of that government undeceived in their notions concerning our 
church ; there being, I believe, fifteen thousand in that colony 


who "nave never heard, nor scarce seen a church of England 
minister; and I have the charity to believe, that after having 
heard one of our ministers preach, they will not look upon our 
church to be such a monster as she is represented ; and being 
convinced of some of the cheats, many of them may duly con- 
sider of the sin of schism. However, let the success be what it 
will, to me the duty seems plain. I have not only mentioned 
this to you, but in my letter to my Lord of London, and shall 
patiently wait for his and the Society's commands therein. 

I will now proceed in giving direct answers to the several 
queries mentioned in yours. Having as yet, only spoke to the 
first, so shall now take the rest in course ; and as for Mr. Moor's 
mission, you will undoubtedly have the account thereof very ful- 
ly by Mr. Talbot, whose place he supplies, having not thought it 
worth the while to stay at Albany. As for my opinion in that 
matter, I think it is too heavy for the Society to meddle with at 
present, and would properly lie as a burthen upon the crown, to 
be defrayed out of the revenue here. For their being brought 
over to our holy faith, will at the same time, secure them in their 
fidelity to the government; and not only that, but the Society 
will, 1 believe, find employraenl enough for their money in send- 
ing of missionaries amongst those who call themselves christians, 
on the coast of America ; which I find to be their resolution. — 
And it is certainly the greatest charity in the world, to have the 
best religion planted in these parts, which with time will, in all 
probability, be so vast a country and people. But whether the 
charge of missionaries for converting the Indians fall to the share 
of the Crown or the Society, to efi'ect that matter well and thor- 
oughly, those sent over on that errand, must be such as can en- 
dure hardships, and are able and willing to live with the Indians 
in their own country, and according to their way and manner, 
which are the methods the French take ; and I believe some of 
those gentlemen who have had their education in the colleges of 
the north part of Scotland, being in orders from my Lord of Lon- 
don, may be the likeliest to undergo it. As for Mr. Dellius, I 
don't think it worth the while in being at any extraordinary 
charge in sending of him ; because I believe no consideration 
would make him live in the Indian country ; and if he did, he 


has not the language ; and one that goes on that mission must 
be a young man, who is able to grapple with fatigues, and will 
not only take pains, but is capable of learning the language ; and 
h is a general observation, that none are so apt to gain foreign 
tongues as the Scotch. 

As for my thoughts of the Society's having appointed that 
good man, Mr. Neau, as catechist to the Negroes and Indians, it 
is undoubtedly a very good work ; and he is wonderfully in- 
dustrious in the dischargeof his duty, and the truth is, takes 
more pains than he needs, by going from house to house to per- 
form that office ; and I believe he would find it as effectual to 
gain the end, and not the fourth part of the trouble to himself, 
to appoint set times in having them together at the English 
church, or at least so many at once as may be proper, and cate- 
chise and instruct them. And Mr. Vesey assures me that he 
shall be very free and willing to let him have the use of the 
church for that purpose. And now I am on this subject, it will 
be very proper that the society direct Mr. Cleator, if he comes 
over, or any schoolmaster whom they appoint in their respective 
places, to catechise and instruct the Negroes and Indians ; and 
that the ministers in their several parishes were desired to send 
a list of all the slaves or free negroes and Indians, the society 
would then see how that matter was further worth their con- 

I did, in my former letters, make mention of one Mr. Bondet, 
a French Protestant minister, who is in orders from the Bishop 
of London. He is a good man, and preaches very intelligibly 
in English, which he does every third Sunday, in his French 
congregation, when he uses the liturgy of the church. He has 
done a great deal of service since his first coming into this coun- 
try, and is well worth the thoughts of the society. The town 
he lives in is called New Rochelle, a place settled by French 
Protestants ; it is comprehended in Mr. Bartow's parish, and con- 
tributes towards his mailitenance, which disables them, in a 
great measure, to pay towards Mr. Bondet's, who is in very great 
want. It is true, besides twenty pounds a year, which the peo- 
ple of New Rochelle promise him, and is very ill paid, he has 



thirty pounds a year settled on him out of the public revenue 
here, as the French minister in York; hath ; but that is paid with 
so much uncertainty, that he starves under the prospect of it. 

Now for a remedy for this poor gentleman, and that he may 
be made as useful to the church as possible ; if thesociety would 
use their interest that he might have an order from the court that 
he may not only forthwith be paid his arrears, but that he should 
afterwards have his money by quarterly payments ; and that 
at the same time, he be directed by the Bishop of London, to 
consult with and be helpful to Mr. Bartow and Mr. Muirson, in 
taking care of the scattering towns of their parishes; especially 
Mr. Barlow's, where it is impossible for any one to manage it. 
And whereas, he has been obliged for his bread, to use the French 
prayers in his French congregation, according to the order of 
the Protestant churches of France, and he had that liberty gran- 
ted him (as he tells me) upon his receiving of orders, it is his 
earnest request, that he might have directions relating thereunto, 
wherein he might be required not to use otherwise than the 
liturgy of our church in any congregations where he preacheth, 
whether English or French ; and it would be well that some 
French common prayer books and catechisms were sent over for 
that purpose. The reason of desiring an order of that nature is, 
that it would put the matter out of dispute. Mr. Bondet and I 
have gone as far as we can in that affair, and it would spend 
too much time to tell }'ou what tempests we waded through in 
attempting it, but if directions came from England about it, none, 
I believe, would be found to oppose it. The chief cause of its 
being hindered with so much heat was, that the French con- 
gregation in York were apprehensive that it might be a prece- 
dent for them ; and for that reason fired the most ignorant of 
Mr. Bondet's people, and persuaded them to recant from what 
they had agreed to. But I must do the most sensible of them 
the justice, that they hold fast their integrity, and are willing to 
receive the church. 

If this matter goe.s forward, I expect that the greatest part of 
the people of New Rochelle will cease their contributions to Mr. 
Bondet ; so I must desire the society to consider him with some 


allowance in England. And if effectual care could be taken that 
301. is paid him, 151. sterling more, with the small helps he will 
have from those who will continue steady to the church, will 
enable him to maintain himself and family. 

If care is not already taken therein, in the instructions which 
are preparing, it will be of absolute necessity, that the clergy of 
this county be directed to meet twice at least, annually, and 
taking to their assistance the best and most sensible of their 
parishes, to consult of the most effectual ways for settling the 
church ; and to give you an impartial account how the parishes are 
settled in point of conveniency, and which way it may be better 
done, not only to make it easy for themselves, but so as the bread 
of life may be fairly and equally divided amongst their people, 
that proper measures might be taken, in having it regulated by 
an act of Assembly ; for if something of this nature is not done, 
. one half the people of the county won't have much benefit by all 
the cost that is laid out upon them. In the conclusion of your 
last letter, you tell me that you had sent some common prayers 
and catechisms, by Mr. Mackenzy, but do* not understand he has 
brought any ; so beg of you to inquire into that mistake ; and in 
case you send any other books to be disposed, pray let them only 
be Dr. Beveridge's (now Bishop of St. Asaph,) Sermon concerning 
the common prayers, a little book entitled : " A Christian's Way to 
Heaven," and one of the Lawfulness of the common prayer. No 
books can be more serviceable than they ; and I would take care 
to have them scattered through Connecticut colony to both min- 
isters and people, and am apt to believe they would do service. 
As for the deputation the society aire now pleased to send me, I 
am exceeding sorry I can do them no service therein ; for the 
people of this county, having generally land of their own, al. 
though they don't want, few or none of them very much abound ; 
there being besides, a settlement belonging to Col. Morris, and 
another to Mr. Philips, and mine, not any that belong to partic. 
ular men of any great value in the county ; nor are there ten in 
the whole county but what have been brought over to the 
church since I came into the province, that truly sir, if we can 
persuade them to build and finish their churches and schools, 


help to maintain their ministers and schoolmasters, and fit con- 
veniences for them, it is the most that can be expected till things 
are better settled, and the church a more firm footing among 
them. I hare not had the happiness to be in company with 
Ool. Morris since I received the deputation ; but shall discourse 
with him concerning that matter when I see him next. I could 
offer some few things more to the consideration of the society, 
but time won't permit me to enlarge, so 1 shall reserve it to the 
next opportunity. So with my humble duty to the society, beg- 
ging their pardon for the trouble I have given them therewitii, 
I desire to remain, sir, &c., &c. 

Caleb Heathcote." » 

We have seen that the first services in Rye, according to the 
rites of the Church of England, were held by the Rev. Thomas 
Pritchard, in the town house. This practice appears to have 
been continued until the completion of the stone church, referred 
to by Mr. Muirson, in his first report to the Secretary. The 
license to erect an English Church in the town of Rye, bears 
date 22nd of January, 1706. 


" By His Ex'cy, Edward Viscount Cornbury, Capt. Gten. & Gov. in Chief of ye 
Province of New- York, New Jersey, and of all the Territories, and Tracts 
of Land Depending thereon, in America, and Vice Admiral of the fame, 
It being Ihe incumbent duty of all good Christians to serve Almighty God in a de- 
cent manner, I have by virtue of the power and authority to me given, by her 
Majesties Letters Patients and the Broad Seale of England, hereby Licensed 
and Impowered the Rector and inhabitants of the Town of Rye, in the County of 
Westchester, in the said Province of New- York, to erect and build a Church in 
the said Town, for the publick worship of God, and the encouragement and in- 
crease of the Christian Religion, according to the rites and Ceremonies of the 
Church of England, as by law Established, and likewise to procure, obtain and re- 
ceive the gifts and Contributions of all such as shall be Piously inclined to the 
Promoting and Carrying on the work aforesaid. Given under my hand and Seal 
at Fort Anne, in New- York, this 22d day of January, in ye fourth year of the 

• Church Rec. Francis L. Hawks', D. D., vol. i. 29. 


Reigne of our Sovereign Lady Anne, by the grace of God of England, Scotland 
France, and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the faith, &c., Anno Dom. 1705-6. 

By his Excellency's Command, 


Mr. Wetmore, writing to the Secretary in 1728, says : — " That 
the chief promoter of the Church and its greatest benefactor was 
Col. Caleb Heathcote, who gave the nails and all the iron work* 
Mr. Muirson paid the masons, whose work amounted to about 
£40." (He probably procured the money by donations in 
New-York.) " The remainder was paid by tax upon the Town. 
Nothing more of the inside was done in Mr. Muirson's time but 
the ceiling." 

This church stood exactly upon the same ground as the present 
edifice, where God has been worshipped for nearly one hun- 
dred and fifty years. Mr. Muirson having been requested to 
baptize several families in Connecticut, obtained the following 
license from the Governour for that purpose : — 


" By his Excellency Edw., "Viscount Cornbury, &c. Whereas, I am inform- 
ed that severall persons in the Towns of Stamford, Hertford, and severall other 
places in the Colony of Connecticutt, ha''e not been baptized by reason they 
have had no Church of England Minister among them ; and being now desierous 
to be baptized by such a Minister, I have therefore thought fitt, and do hereby give 
and grant unto the said Geo. Muirson, full and free liberty, leave and lyeense to 
visit those places and persons for the service aforesaid, from time to time, as 
often as you shall be thereunto requested by them. 

Given under my hand at Port Anne, in New- York, this 4th dsy of Aprill, 
(1706:)"- ■• 

Of his own parish Mr. Muirson again reports : — 

•Albany ^eed book, x. 101. Sec. office. 
* Doc. Hist. New- York, vol. iii, 936. 



Rye, May 22d, 1706. 
Hon'd Sir, 

" I think myself obliged to embrace every opportunity to 
give the Honourable Society an account of the state of the 
Church in my Parish. 

I have baptized about two hundred, young and old, but most 
adult persons, and am in hopes of initiating many more into the 
church of Christ, after I have examined, taught, and find them 
qualified. This is a large parish ; the towns are far distant ; 
the people were some Q,uakers, some Anabaptists, but chiefly 
Presbyterians and Independents; they were violently set against 
our church, but now (blessed be God,) they comply heartily, for 
I have now above forty communicants, and only six when I first 
administered that holy sacrament, two of which never received 
before, several others will gladly joyne quickly, whom I intend 
to admit when I shall think them worthy. I find that catechi- 
sing on the week days in the remote towns, and frequent visi- 
ting is of great service, and I am sure I have made twice more 
proselytes by proceeding after that method, than by public 

Every fourth Sunday I preach at Bedford, and I am afraid, 
without success, for they are a very willful, stubborn people in 
that town, there are about 120 unbaptizsd, and notwithstanding 
all the means I have used, I could not presuade them of the 
necessity of that holy ordinance till of late, (thanks be to Al- 
mighty God for it,) some of them begin to conform. I intend to 
stay a month at once with them, which I hope .by God's help, 
will produce good effect. The town of Rye are very diligent 
in building our Church, which will be finished this sum- 
mer ; it is of stone 50 foot long, and 36 foot wide, and 20 foot 
high, besides a steeple, which is to be finished next summer. 
This town is very willing to do what they can, but extremely 
])oor, therefore we humbly address our superiors at home to as- 
sist us with some nesessaries w;hich cannot be procured here, i.e. 
furniture for the communion table, the pulpit and a bell. I iu- 


treat you to remind the Society to send me the books, for 
I stand in great need of them. I have drawn two bills upon the 
Treasurer which I hope he has paid, according to the Society's 
promise that if I went to Rye, or elsewhere but York City, they 
would allow me £50 per annum, with other missionaries :— I am 
invited by some persons in Connecticut Colony, to baptize their 
children; the town is called Stratford, about 60 miles distant, 
whither I intend to go in a few days. By the next I shall give 
you an account of what progress I made. Several representa- 
tions have been made of -my neighbour, Mr. Bondet, French 
Minister at New Rochelle, I know him to be a very good, pious 
person, very diligent in the service of the church, he truly de- 
serves some consideration. Col. Heathcoteis highly instrumen- 
tal in promoting the interest of our holy church, both by his ex- 
ample- and persuasions ; he has given all the ironwork to our 
church at Rye. I shall not offer you any further trouble at 
• present, seeing the worthy Mr. Evans, (who is bearer) is well 
acquainted with our circumstances, and has promised to give 
you an account. I beg your prayers for my further success in 
my ministry. I ever shall remain beseeching God to keep up 
your glorious work in hand, for his glory and men's good. 

Your most faithful 

and obedient Servant, 

George Muirson.''" 


New- York, April l&th, 1706. 


" I wrote you a very long letter by the Jamaica Fleet, and being 

informed that those convoys are arrived, it will be needless to 

trouble you with any duplicate thereof. As for the affairs relating 

to the Church, they continue to go on exceeding well in this 

■ New- York, MSS. from Archives at Fiilham. vol. i. 130. (Hawks'.) 


Parish, where there hath been about 200 baptized, and most grown 
persons, since Mr. Muirson's coming ; and about 20 or 25 added 
to the communion, and if it please God to preserve him amongst 
us a year longer, I believe this Parish will as generally con- 
form to the Church as most Parishes in »he Q,ueens dominions ; 
which I must confess is very wonderfuil, and I wish with all 
my heart I could say so much of Westchester. But I hope after 
the ministers of this county have settl'd their monthly lectures) 
which they are about to do, we shall in a little time find an alter- 
ation in things much for the better. I- have since my last been 
taking some pains to find out the best ways for introducing the 
Church into the neighbouring colony of Connecticut, and am in- 
formed that there are a considerable number at a place called 
Stratford, about 6 miles from this parish, who are willing to con- 
form, and some farrtilies who refuse baptism from any other than 
a church of England minister ; that Mr. Muirson intends, God 
willing, about a month hence, to take a journey amongst them 
where I design, God willing, to accompany him, and after that 
progress, we shall be able to give a better account of ye state of 
that Colony relating to the Church. In my last I made bold to 
recommend Mr. Bondet to the Society as a worthy object to their 
favour, he having always been very firm and zealous for the 
Church, and if he has been otherwise represented to the Society, 
they have not done him justice. What I have to request in his 
behalf is, that the society would be pleased to use their interest, 
that he might have an order from home, that the £30 a year 
which is settled upon him by the Government, may be punctually 
paid him in quarterly payments, and that the Society would add 
£15 sterling more to it, which would enable that poor gen- 
tleman to live, directing him at the same time not only to ad- 
vise and consult with Mr. Bartow and Mr. Muirson, of the best 
methods for propagating the Church in this county, but likewise 
to assist Mr. Bartow by preaching in his parish, it being not pos- 
sible that any one man can take care of rnore than half of it. — 
I wrote you by Mr. Talbot, that the people of this Parish had 
resolved to build them a stone church, and had made some pre- 
parations by carting stone in order to it. They have since got 


most of their timber upon the place and about 14 days hence the 
masons will begin to work ; that I hope with God's assistance we 
shall against Winter have it so forward as to preach in. I hope 
it won't be long ere we shall see Mr. Cleator, whom we want 
very much, and would be of infinite use in the thorough settle- 
ment of the Church in this Parish. We are in dayly expecta- 
tion of the mast fleet, by whose return you shall, God willing) 
have a very long letter from me. So with my most humble 
duty to the Society, begging their pardon for my brevity at this 
time, I remain, 


Your affectionate, humble Servant, 
Caleb Heathcote." » 


Honor'd Sir, 

"Please to give me leave to present by you, my most humble 
duty and respect to the Honourable Society, with an assurance 
that I always shall from time to time give 'em an account (accord- 
ing to their desire) of the condition of the church, where I am 
concerned ; and that having written so lately, I have nothing 
new at present to offer, only, that since that time I have baptized 
several, both old and young, that the number of communicants in- 
creases daily, and the people frequent the Church duly on Sun- 
days. They seem to like the ways of the Church very well,, 
but, (as in all other places,) there are some stubborn, ill natured 
persons among 'em, yet I'm encouraged to hope that in time, (by 
God's blessing upon my endeavours) I shall bring over even those 
to have a good opinion of our Constitutions. The stone-work of our 
Church is finished and covered, but the winter approaching and 
the people being extremely poor and having exhausted what lit- 
tle money they had, on what is done already, we cannotgproceed 
any further this fall, buthope next year to finish all, with a steeple, 

* New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 89-91. (Hawks'.) 


which when completed will make a large and beautiful Building. 
Expositions on the Church Catechisms and Common Prayer 
Book's are much wanted — Please to communicate to your Society 
that I have lately been in Connecticut Colony, and found some 
persons well disposed towards the Church. I preached in Strat- 
ford to a very numerous congregation both forenoon and afternoon. 
I baptized about twenty four persons ye same day — I intend 
another journey thither again quickly, being invited to baptize 
their children, and hope (by the Divine aid) to make a fair be- 
ginning for the Establishment of the Church in a considerable 
part of that Government. — There are I'm informed, some thou- 
sands of persons in that Colony unbaptized, and the reason is 
this, most of their ministers refuse to admit any children into 
Christ's Church by Baptism, but those whose Parents are in full 
communion with them — -The Independents threaten me and all 
those that are Instrumental in bringing me thither, with Prison 
and hard usage. — They are very much incensed to see that the 
Church (Rome's Sister as they ignorantly call her) is like to gain 
ground among 'em^ and use all the stratagems they can invent to 
defeat my enterprises.^ But however, since I hope my superiors 
approve of my undertaking, I shall not fail to visit, as often as 
the afiairs of my Parish will permit ; neither shall all they can do 
or say discourage from prose'cuting (to the utmost of my ability) 
so good a design. 1 shall be glad to receive the instructions of 
your Honourable Corporation by the next opportunity, which I 
shall always think myself happy in obeying. In the meantime 
shall continue to proceed in this method till I receive further 
orders. The, Hon. Col. Heathcote (who always studies and en- 
deavours the good of the Church) has been very diligent and 
industrious in carrying on this great work ; the eminency of his 

' The spirit of the Puritans at Stratford, (says Dr. Chapin,) may be inferred from 
a single fact. .Not long after the death of the Rev. Mr. Muirson, Isaac Nell, one of 
the Churchwardens there — a man of unblameable conversation — also died, where- 
upon some doggrel verses were written and circulated there, having these lines, ; 

"Isaac Nell is gone to hell 

To tell Mr Muirson that his Church is well." 


station, and with all his favouring and countenancing my at- 
tempts of this nature, is of so great consequence among the peo- 
ple, that truly what success I have hitherto had, either at home 
or abroad, is more owing to his prudent conduct, than the best of 
my weak labours. He honours me with his good company in 
all such progresses, and exerts his utmost endeavours to settle 
the Church wherever he goes, which will recommend him the 
esteem and regard of all good men, but especially (I'me persua- 
ded) of your worthy members. Let me entreat you to send the 
books the Society promised me. Shall rejoice often to receive 
your commands. I earnestly beg your Prayers that my labours 
may be blessed with that happy success that God's glory may 
be advanced, and his people's good, farthered ; and that God, of 
his infinite goodness, may bless and direct your Honourable body 
in so glorious and laudable design, and at last reward you all 
with eternal bliss, is the frequent Prayer of 
Honor'd Sir, 

Your most faithful, 

humble Servant, 

George Muirson. 

Rye, October 2d, 1706. 
Directions are 

To Jno. Chamberlayne, Esq." ^ 

The following extract is taken from the MSS. of the Vener- 
able Society, for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts : — 



" After I had finished my other letter by the bearer, Mr. Evans, 
he resolving to tarry a month or six weeks longer than he first 
proposed, gives me the opportunity to send you what new mat- 

« Conn. MSS. from Archives at Fulham, p. 5. (Hawks'.) 


ter hath since occurred. And to begin with Connecticut : about 
fourteen days ago, Mr. Muirson paid his congregation in those 
parts a visit, and had the happiness to be accompanied with Mr. 
Evans, who out of his zeal to serve the Church, though of a 
■weakly constitution, undertook that troublesome journey ; that 
being an eye witness to those affairs, he might' be the more able 
to give a satisfactory account concerning the state of the Church 
there, to whom I shall make bold, in a great measure, to refer 
you. I bless God for it, every thing has almost outgone my 
first hopes, and I am very much of opinion, that if that matter 
is pushed on with care, a wonderful deal of service may be done 
the Church in that government. The people having been kept 
in perfect blindness, as many of them now declare, and as I told 
you in mine by the Jamaica Fleet, it cannot be a greater act of 
charity to undeceive the Indians, than those blinded people, and 
where there are such vast numbers debarred fropi the benefit of 
God's holy ordinance, concerning which I was so full in the let- 
ter before mentioned, that it will be needless to enlarge on that 

I did, in my two last letters, acquaint you that there was a 
very ingenious minister in that colony who showed great incli. 
nations to come over to the Church, and that I was of opinion 
he would be well worthy the recovery ; I also told you that his 
affections for the Church had created him so many enemies ; 
that he had undergone a sort of persecution on that account ; 
but now his enemies have done their worst to him, having turned 
him out of his living, as Mr. Evans can more fully inform you — 
he having seen and discoursed with him — that as I really be- 
lieve it will conduce very much to the service of the Church — 
and also in justice to the poor gentleman, who has a large family 
of small children, who must como to ruin and misery, and be- 
come a sacrifice in the cause of the Church, which would be a 
great dishonour not to be relieved by us. I did, therefore, make 
bold to assure him of the Society's favors; and that upon his 
going to England, and making a solemn declaration that he will 
receive orders from the Bishop of London, so soon as he can with- 

AND. CHURCH 0¥ EYE. 173 

conveniency do it ; that to enable him to maintain his family 
during his absence, I would pass my word that he should be en- 
titled to the UBual missionary's allowance of 50^. a year from the 
time of his going off; and that in order thereunto, I would 
give him my best recommendations to the Society. So it is 
my humble request they would be pleased to allow it if he 
comes ; or in case they do not think proper to settle a salary 
upon him before such time as he is actually in orders, that ij 
may be considered him under some other name ; because my 
promise to him is such ; and I am not under the least doubt 
but he will merit it by his services to the Church. 

This sudden turn concerning Mr. Reed, has put upon me new 
thoughts, which are to have Mr. Muirson removed from this 
parish, and that his mission be for Connecticut colony in general, 
the place of his residence being at Stratford, or at such town as 
he shall judge to be most for the service of the Church. This 
will, in my opinion, not only be the most effectual way for carry- 
ing on that great work, but the Society will be put to no diffi- 
culty in getting a proper person ; in which, if the least mistake 
should happen as to the qualification of a minister, the whole 
mission would be endangered by it ; and as experience hath 
fully satisfied us how fitting Mr. Muirson is for that undertaking, 
by what he hath already done, I am humbly of opinion, for that 
reason, it would not be prudent to put that matter to a new risk ; 
and, in the next place, it will be of absolute necessity not only 
to have a very good man in this place, being on the frontiers of 
that government, but also one who will be zealously assisting 
to Mr. Muirson, in which none will be more proper than Mr. 
Reed. And in case there is a removal according to the advice 
given herewith, it is my desire it may be so ; and then as to Mr. 
Muirson, if he goes on that mission, he cannot have less allowed 
him than 100 pounds sterling a year, because, at the first set- 
ting out, nothing must be expected from them, nor indeed any 
offers made toward it, and as his mission will be four times as 
large as any other, so he must consequently be in a perpetual 
motion, which will be chargeable and troublesome. I have not 


had much talk with him about it ; but I doubt not in the least, 
if my Lord of London, and the Society direct his removaJ, I can 
persuade him to be easy under it, 

I have, since writing my other letters, taken some pains to 
inquire concerning the character and behaviour of the bearer, Mr. 
Evans, and upon the whole, find him to be an extraordinary 
good man, and one that hath done very great service to the 
Church, not only in Philadelphia, but in other neighbouring 
towns j'that 1 am very much concerned that there should be any 
misunderstanding betwixt him and any of his parish ; as he re- 
presents things, and being a very honest, good man, I can't help 
givingcredit to it. The Church and he have had hard usage of- 
fered them ; though I am past a doubt upon making out those 
things to my Lord of London, he will find means to settle and 
complete their differences, and return him to his Parish ; and 
so far as it may be proper for the Society to concern themselves 
in that matter, I could wish they would give their assistance 
therein ; because, whilst they are in that broken condition, the 
Church can't but receive many wounds by it. I can't think of 
anything further of moment at this time ; so remain, sir, your 
obedient servant. 

Caleb Heathcote. 

New- York, April 14th, 1707. 
To Jno. Chamberlayne, Esq., etc."* 

The following letter.shews, that : "Mr. Muirson, besides his 
salary of £50 from the Society, was entitled to £50 currency, as 
settled by Act of Assembly on Rye parish ; but as his people 
were poor, and for the most part recent converts, he considera- 
bly forbore to press his legal claim, and during the first two 
years of his ministry, had only received about ten or twenty 
pounds currency ; thus plainly showing that he sought not theirs, 
but them."b 

» Church Record, Vol. I. 317-18, (Hawks'.) 
■• Hawkins Hist. Notices, 279. 




Much Honor'd Sir, 
" I received your's dated May 2d, 1706. The Instructions you 
sent along with it I'm informed, are at York, which will come 
to my hands quickly. I understand by yours, that the Society 
expects an account of all the subscriptions and contributions, 
I receive from the Government or Inhabitants, of which this is 
an exact ; that there is £50 New- York money settled by act 
of Assembly upon Rye parish, but the people being very poor, 
I've received only about 10 or £12 since I've been their minister. 
Its true I could compell 'em by Law to pay the whole, but such 
proceedings I'm well assured would have been very hurtful to 
the Interest of the Church, in a place especially surrounded with 
Dissenters from all sorts ; and therefore I thought it better to 
have patience with 'em till they are more able, than that our Glo- 
rious work should anyways suffer. They are all new Converts, 
and so I must be with 'em in many things, tho' to my present 
disadvantage, but I hope when our Church is finished, they will ■ 
consider my circumstances and make my life more comfortable, 
than hitherto it has been.' 

As to the present circumstance of my Parish, I've nothing new 
to offer, only since my last, I've Baptized several Persons ; that 
the number of Communicants increases, that the people duly 
frequent the Church, excepting a few duaker and Anabaptist 
Families. There is a considerable number of growing Persons not 
yet Baptized, but I intend to admit 'em after they are instructed 
into the principles of thatReligion, of which their Baptism makes 
them members, for I think it necessary that the adult be first 
taught what they, are to promise and perform in that covenant. 
It would be of great service if the Society wou'd be pleased 
to send over Common Prayer Books, and some small treatises 
in defence of the Church, for our adversaries have mustered up 
all the scandalous and reviling pamphlets they can get, and 
have dispersed them among the people in order to prejudice 'em 
against us. I want Books very much for my own use, having 
only a few I bought before I came from London, but I hope the 


Society have been pleased to consider my request before this 

I humbly beg your Prayers, that all my endeavours may an- 
swer the glorious end of my mission, and the advancement' of 
God's Glory in the due edyfying of his people. 

That Almighty God may be pleased (out of the immense 
treasury of his riches) so to increase your stock, and bless all 
your laudable designs, that you may, for the further good of his 
Church and people, send forth more labourers into his harvest 
shall ever be ye fervent prayer of 
Honored Sir, 

Your most faithful friend. 

And very humble servant, 

George Muirs.on." » 
Rye, ith April, 1707. 


Manor of iScarsdale, June 18, 1707. 
Wo'rthy Sir, 
" I received yoiirs of the 5th June last, by Mr. Cleator. I am 
very thankful to the Society for the books sent by him which 
shall, with a more than common care, be disposed of for the 
service of the Church. As for the Common Prayer Books, I 
shall not give or send 'em to any but such as give me an assu- 
rance of their making a right use of them, and I question not, 
by the blessing of God, with the help of these Prayer Books 
that we shall be the most regular parish in the Province, except 
New-York, as to the people making responses ; as to which in 
most other places, they are generally too defective. I wa? truly 
very much surprised at Mr. Cleator's arrival, for not having had 
a line from him for two years past, could not believe he was 
alive, though he hath since satisfyed me that it was not his 
fault, but the miscarriage of his letters. He has entered upon 
his school teaching and with all the success which can be de- 

New-York, MSS from Archives at Fulham, p. 8. 10. (Hawks'.) 


sired, for the people, being exceedingly fond of him, most wil- 
lingly commit their children to his care to be trained up by him 
according to the discipline of our church, which, with the as- 
sistance of Almighty God, will be established on a lasting foun- 
dation in this parish ; and besides the care of his school, which 
trust he discharges with the utmost faithfulness when Mr. Muir- 
son is absent from the town of Rye, either to the extreme parts 
of his parish, or otherwise for the service of the church ; the 
people being called together after the usual manner, he reads the 
prayers of the church to them, and a lecture morning and 
evening, and the people come very readily to hear him. I take 
notice that the Society are not willing to send any minister nor 
ministers into Connecticut, unless they have a formal applica- 
tion ; which having been done to my Lord of London, and sent 
by Mr. Evaiice, shall wait till I Imow their result therein. I 
did, in my former letters, very earnestly move the Society that 
directions might be given to the missionaries of this county and 
Queens county, which are contiguous, to appoint duarterly 
Assemblies amongst them, and gave them my reasons of how 
great use that would be for the service of the church, and should 
be glad they had taken that matter into consideration, and to 
know their result therein. 1 am the more earnest on this head, 
because I am of opinion it will be of greater service to the 
church than can at first sight be imagined. I desire my most 
hearty thanks may be presented to the Society for their favours 
to Mr. Cleator, and will be very careful that the charge they are 
at concerniilg him shall be faithfully applied for the service of 
the church. I have wrote unto you so lately and fully by Mr. 
Evance, who I hope is ere this arrived, that I shall not now en- 
large, but remain, 

Worthy Sir, 

Your most obed't serv't, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

•* New- York MSS. from Archives af Pulham, vol. i. p. 165, 166. (Hawks'.) 



Col. Lewis Morris, in a letter to the Secretary of the Ven. So- 
ciety, " concerning the state of the Church in New- York and 
the Jersey's, supposed to be writ about the end of the year 1707, 
or beginning of ITOS," speaks in the following flattering terms 
of Mr. Muirson : — 



" The ministers they (the Society) have sent, have gained 
some ground, especially the Rev. Mr. Muirson ; he is placed on 
the borders of Connecticut, and among a people labouring under 
the greatest prejudices to our Holy Church. He has among 
these made many converts, and persuaded the building of a very 
fine church of stone in the town of Rye. His cure is not con- 
fined to his parish, but he sometimes sallys into Connecticut, 
and has made a very great harvest there ; and in my humble 
opinion, deserves the thanks of the Society and what encour- 
agement they can give him."» 

The following extract is taken from Col. Heathcote's letter 
to the^Secretary, dated : 

Manor oj Scarsdale, \Sth Dec, 1707. 

Worthy Sir, 
" As to what you mention of the people of our parish, I hope we 
shall, besides their zeal in building the church, with time, pre- 
vail with them to do every thing that is proper towards the en- 
dowing of it ; though I must acquaint you that 'tis only the town 
of Rye, and not the parish which hath built it ; and I hope in 
some years (if I live) to have another church, if not more, in the 
bounds of this parish."!" 

Besides the above, Col. Heathcbte addressed the following let- 
ter to the same : — 

' Ne^<f-York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. i. p. 93-94. (Hawks'.) 
I, » New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 168, 169. ' (Hawks'.) 



Manor of Scarsdale, 2ith Dec, 1707. 
Worthy Sir, 

"I do herewith make bold to beg your care in delivering of the 
inclosed to his Grace, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and to 
make my apology for taking that freedom. The contents 
whereof are in the first place, to prevail with his Grace to use 
his utmost endeavours and interest, that my Lord Cornbury may 
be succeeded in this Government by one of whom there is all 
the moral assurance that can be Had, that he will be a true pro- 
moter of religion and virtue, and will not be wanting in best en- 
deavours to forward thatglorious design the Society are labour- 
ing for. In the second place, that he would give us his best as- 
sistance in the speedy dispatch of a Bishop, the great need and 
want thereof appears more and more. The usage of the t wo Mis- 
sionaries, Mr. Moore and Brooks, is an unanswerable argu- 
ment on that account ; and. unless there is a speedy relief to our 
clergy, in having one to head and quiet them, we may expect 
more examples of that nature. I am so well assured of your 
temper and zeal for promoting that great and good work the 
; Society are labouring for, that I need not multipty arguments. 
So begging pardon for this freedom, I beg leave to remain un- 
alterably, &c., (fee, 

Caleb Heathcote. 

P. S. I should be glad, you would obtain his Grace's assist- 
ance in that afiair I wrote to you about by Mr. Brooks, as either 
that he would be pleased to ask the Q,ueen for it in his own 
name, the Society's, or both."* 

In his last communication to the secretary, Mr. Muirson men- 
tions that they had completed the house of God at Rye, and 
gives some account of the Indians. 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. L 169. 170. (Hawks'.) 



Honor'd Sir, 
" You desire me to give an account of all those persons 
that contribute to my support in these parts. That I can easily 
do ; they are but few, for since I came into the country, I have 
not received in all above 18^., tho' there is a salary of £50 per 
annum, New- York money, established by act of Assembly upon 
the minister of this parish : but the people being very poor, and 
the building of our church having cost a great deal, I thought 
it more proper to bear with them, than to exact by force what is 
due ; and so sutfer rather in my own condition, than that the 
house of God should not be finished — which now, to my great 
comfort, is completed, and a stately fabric it is indeed. It was 
built by the inhabitants of the town of Rye, without the help of 
the rest of the parish. And as for subscriptions from other parts 
of the government, we have had none ; but I expect some at 
York, for making the pulpit, communion table, and finishing 
the seats. 

You direct me to bring to the church the negroes and Indians 
of this parish, and to consult with Mr. Neau about the most 
proper means for their instruction. Mr. Neau is a good, religious 
man ; his conversation is desirable and edifying. I always have, 
and ever shall esteem it my happiness to keep a settled corres- 
pondence with him : for I know he will joyfully do anything that 
may contribute to the conversion of infidels to Christianity. But 
there are only a few negroes in this parish, save what are in 
Colonel Heathcote's family, where I think there are more than 
in all the parish besides. However, so many as we have, I shall 
not be wanting to use my endeavours for their good. 

As to the Indians, the natives of the country, they are a de- 
caying people. We have not now in all this parish twenty fam- 
ilies ; whereas, not many years ago, there were several hundreds. 
I have frequently conversed with some of them, and been at 
their great meetings oipowowing, as they call it. I have taken 


some pains to teach some of them, but to no purpose ; for they 
seem regardless of instruction ; and when I have told them of 
the evil consequences of their hard drinking, etc., they replied 
that Englishmen do the same : and that it is not so great a sin 
in an Indian as in an Englishman ; because the Englishman's 
religion forbids it, but an Indian's does not. They further say 
they will not be Christians, nor do they see the necessity for so 
being, because we do not live according to the precepts of our 
religion. In such ways do most of the Indians that I have con- 
versed with, either here or elsewhere, express themselves. I am 
heartily sorry that we should give them such a bad example, 
and fill their mouths with such objections against our blessed re- 
ligion. But to prevent this, as likewise many disorders that 
there are amongst us, I know of no better way, than that the 
honorable Society would be pleased to recommend to our Gover- 
nour, my Lord Cornbury, or if he is called home, to his successor, 
to make some acts of Assembly against the many vices and im- 
moralities that are too common in most places of this government, 
or to take care that the wholesome laws of our realm be put 
in execution against the offenders. Swearing, and drinking, and 
Sabbath breaking, are chiefly predominant, which are all owing 
to the evil example and great neglect of our magistrates ; and 
that, again, is owing to the neglect and indifferency of our su- 
perior officers, who mind but little whether our justices discharge 
their duty in that affair or not. 

These things put a great stop to the growth of piety and god- 
liness among us, and it is an objection that I frequently met with 
from several dissenters, both in this and in the neighbouring col- 
ony, that many of the members of the Church of England are 
irregular in their lives, and therefore they ought not, and will 
not join. The consequence is unjust and groundless — being the 
unworthiness of one or more communicants, is not charged a 
sin upon him who receives it in a fit and becoming manner. 
Yet, however, among ignorant and unthinking people, and even 
sometimes among the more knowing too, it is a great hindrance 
and stumbling-block, and is partly the' reason that some of your 
missionaries have so few communicants. 


I thank God, I have no great reason to complain of my own 
people, nor do I mention these things for their sakes only, but 
for the good of the whole. And I heartily wish that the honoura-- 
ble Society would do their endeavour that a good governour may 
be sent ; one that will discharge his place faithfully, and take 
care that others under him would do the same. This will be 
a means of bringing about a happy reformation, and will won- 
derfully conduce to the interest of our Church in these parts. 
> Sir, 1 intreat your acceptance of my most humble and hearty 
thanks for the kind and Christian advice you were pleased to 
tender me in relation to Connecticut. Such measures as you 
proposed, I have all along observed ; and I am sure no man in 
that colony can justly accuse me of the contrary. I know that 
meekness and moderation is most agreeable to the mind of our 
blessed Saviour, Christ, who himself was meek and lowly, and 
would have all his followers to learn that lesson of him. It was 
a method by which Christianity was at first propagated, and it 
is still the best policy to persuade mankind to receive instruc- 
tions. Gentleness and sweetness of temper is the readiest way 
to engage the affections of the people ; and charity to those who 
differ from us in opinion is the most likely to convince them 
thatour labours are intended for the welfare of their souls ; where- 
as passionate and rash methods of proceeding will fill their minds 
with prejudices against both our persons and our principles, and 
utterly indispose them against all the means we can make use of 
to reclaim them from their errors. I have duly considered all 
these things, and have carried myself civilly and kindly to the 
Independent party, but they have ungratefully resented my love ; 
yet I will further consider the obligations that my holy religion 
lays upon me, to forgive injuries and wrongs, and to return good 
for their evil. Thus I hope, by God's assistance, I shall behave 
myself, and avoid the doing any thing that may bring blame 
upon that godly Society, whose missionary I am, or hinder the 
progress of that glorious work they have undertaken ; and ever 
since I have been invited into that colony, I have been so far 
from endeavoring to intrench upon the toleration which her Ma- 


jesty has, declared she will preserve, that, on the contrary, I de- 
sired only a liberty of conscience might be allowed to the mem- 
bers of the national Church of England ; which, notwithstand- 
ing they seemed unwilling to grant, and left no means untried, 
both foul and fair, to prevent the settling the Church among 
them ; for one of their justices came to my lodging, and fore- 
warned me, at my peril, from preaching ; telling me that 1 did 
an illegal thing in bringing in new ways among them. The 
people were likewise threatened with prison and a forfeiture of 
51. for coming to hear me. 

It will require more time than you will willingly bestow on 
these lines, to express how rigidly and severely they treat our 
people, by taking their estates by distress, when they do not wil- 
lingly pay to support their ministers. And though every Church- 
man in that colony pays his rate for the building and repairing 
their meeting houses, yet they are so maliciously set against us, 
that they deny us the use of them, though on week days ; they 
tell our people that they will not suffer the house of God to be 
defiled with idolatrous worship and superstitious ceremonies. 
They are so bold that they spare not openly to speak reproach- 
fully and with great contempt of our Church. They say the 
sign of the cross is the mark of the beast, and the sign of the 
devil ; and that those who receive it are given to the devil. — 
And when our people complain to their magistrates of the per- 
sons who thus speak, they will not so much as sign a warrant 
to apprehend them, nor reprove them for their offence. This is 
quite a different character to what, perhaps, you have heard of 
that people ; for I observe particularly, one expression of your 
letter, where you say they are an ignorant, hot-heady, but well 
meaning people. That they are ignorant I can easily grant ; 
for if they had either much knowledge or goodness, they would 
not act and say as they do ; but that they are hot heady, I have too 
just reason to believe ; and as to their meaning, I leave that to 
be interpreted by their unchristian proceedings with us. Who- 
ever informed you so, I may freely say, that he was not so well 
acquainted with the constitution of that people, as I am, who 
give you the contrary information. I beg that you would be- 


lieve that this account (though seemingly harsh and severe, yet 
no more than is true,) does not proceed from want of charity, 
either toward their souls or bodies, but purely for the good of 
both. And to give you better information concerning the state 
of that people, that proper remedies may be taken for curing the 
evils that are among them, and that our Churchmen in that Col- 
ony may not be oppressed and insulted over by them, but that 
they may obtain a liberty of conscience, and call a minister of 
their own communion, and that they maybe freed from pay- 
ing to their ministers, they may be enabled to maintain one of 
their own. This is all these good men desire. 

I have lately preached to a Dutch congregation, about 18 miles 
from this town ; they seem to be well disposed to the Church, 
and I intend to give them frequent visits on weeii days, but more 
of this hereafter. 

Mr. Cleator is still with us ; he continues faithful in the 
discharge of his duty, (he is, according to your instructions,) very 
useful and serviceable to me upon all occasions. He reads di- 
vine service and sermons to the people, when the affairs of the 
Church call me abroad. In short, I believe him to be a very 
good man, and that he justly deserves your bounty. I hope by 
this time Mr. Moore and Mr. Brooke are with you — two good 
men indeed, who suffered for discharging their office. I intend- 
ed to have laid down some arguments to show the necessity we 
have of a bishop among us ; but I think their treatment will be 
sufficient for all ; and if some speedy methods be not taken, I 
cannot tell how soon their's may be our fate. There was a time 
when our Governour looked with a favorable countenance upon 
us ; but tempora mutantur, I pray God to put it into the^hearts 
of our superiors at home to send us a head to bless and protect 
the whole. 

Honored sir, your most assured friend and very humble ser- 

Geo. MuiRSON.a 
Hye, 9th January, 1707-8." 

■ Connecticut MSS. from Archives at Fulham, p. 25. (Hawks'.) 


The Rev. George Muirson, after a short, but a most useful 
service in the ministry of the Church, died on Tuesday, the 12th 
of October, 1703, much lamented by his friends, and missed by 
his parishioners. '' He was a most zealous, devoted, and truly 
good man ; a sound Churchman in his principles, and bold and 
fearless in advocating his views ; cool in judgment, winning in 
manners, and possessed of great natural eloquence; he was 
"well fitted for the position in which he was placed, and admi- 
rably calculated to introduce the church into the then benighted 
Government of Connecticut. " 

From the following entry in the records of the Honorable 
William Smith, of Long Island, it appears that Mr. Muirson 
was buried in the old stone Church, at Rye : — 

Manour of St. Georg's, June 20th, 1707. 

"Then sister Gloriana was mary'd to the Rev. Mr. George 
Muirson, who, th6 12th of October, 1708, departed this life at 
Rye, and was intered in his Parish Church." 

What more suitable mausoleum could have enshrined his 
boneSj than the stately fabric his pious zeal had reared. 

" What needs more ■words, the future world he sought 
And set the pomp and pride of this at nought, 
Heaven was his aim, let heaven be still his station 
That left such work for others' imitation." 

By his wife Glorianna, youngest daughter of the Honorable 
William Smith, of St. George's Manor, L. I., Chief Justice and 
President of the Council of New- York, he had one son, George 
Muirson, M. D. of Setauket, L. I.,' who married his cousin, 
Anna Smith, and left one son, Heathcote Muirson. The latter 
■was a graduate of Yale College in 1776, and died from wounds 
received in the attack upon Lloyd's Neck, L. I., July, 1781. 
Catherine,'" the sister of Heathcote Muirson, married her fath- 

• " Dr. Muirson possessed a large property in Setauket, or more correctly, in 
Brookhaven ; this however was confiscated after the war of the Revolution, and 
but little of it was recovered by his family. He died at New Haven, Conn., aged 
79." — Communicated by the Rev. Frederick M. Noll, of Setauket. 

•^Catherine Muirson was born at Brodkhaven, June 8th, 1742, died, April 15th, 
and was buired under Caroline Church, in that place, A. D., 1785. 


er's pupil, Cyrus Punderson, M. D. Their grandson, Henry Ty- 
ler Punderson, is still living at Setauket. 

Mrs. Muirson was born at Brookhaven, L. I., June 2Ist, 1690, 
and survived her husband only two years, as appears by the 
following entry in the Smith MSS: "(Thursday)" — " Mannour 
of Scarsdaie, October 7th, 1710"—" Then God Almighty, after 

days sickness and bloody flux, was pleased to take to 

himself our Dear Sister, Glorianna Muirson, who the Saturday 
ensuing was intered in Brot. Colonel Heathcote's burying place." 


" In the Name op God, Amen. The thirteenth day of September, in the year of 
our Lord God, one thousand seven hundred and eight, I, George Muirson, of 
Rye, in the county of Westchester, and province of New- York, clerk, being weake 
in body, but of perfect mind and memory, thanks be given unto God therefor, calling 
unto mind the mortality of my body, and knowing that it is appointed for all 
men once to dye ; do make and ordaine this my last will and Testament, that is to 
say : principally, and first of all, I give my soule into the hands of God that gave 
it, and for my body, I commend it to the earth to be buried in a christianlike and 
decent manner att the discretion of my Executrix, nothing doubting but att the 
General Resuerection I shall receive the same again by the Almighty power of 
God ; and as touching such worldly estate wherewith it hath pleased God to bless 
me in this life, I give and devise, and dispose of the same in the following man- 
ner and forme : I give and bequeath to my dearly beloved wife, Gloriana, whom 
I likewise constitute, appoint, and ordain my only and sole Executrix of this, my 
last will and testament, all and singular my estate, Reall and personall, whether 
of lands, messuages, tenements, money, gooods, chattels of what kind and na- 
ture and quality now in my possession, or in possession of any other, or owing 
me from any person or persons, which is, or may, by any way or means be my 
just rights and title att the day of my death, by her, the said Gloriana, freely to be 
possessed and enjoyed. And I do hereby utterly disallow, revoke, and disannul! 
all and every testaments, wills, legacies, requests, and executors by me made, or 
before this time nanjed, willed and bequeathed ; ratifying and confirming thi» 
and no other, to be my last will and testament. 

In wittness whereof, I have hereimto sett my hand and seale, the day and year 
above written. 


Signed, sealed, published, pronounced and declared by the said George Muir- 
son, as his last will and testament, in the presence of us the subscribers. 


» Sur. office, N. Y. Rec. of Wills, Vol. v. p. 385. Proved 10th day of Nov., 1708. 


Col. Heathcote, writing to the Secretary, April 28th, 1709, 
says : — " I must in the first place give you the melancholy ac- 
count of Mr. Muirson's death, who was a very industrious and 
successful Missionary, and had it pleased God to have preserved 
his life, would have been able to have given a wonderful ac- 
count of his labours. By his constant journeys in the service 
of the Church, and the necessary supply of his family, he ex- 
pended every farthing he got here and of the Society, and were 
the stock not so low, the Society could not have done a better 
act, than to have considered his widow whom he has left 
very bare, and has since his death been brought in bed with a 
boy, which is living.''^ 

In a letter of May 30th, 1709, Col. Morris writes to the Sec- 
retary as follows: — " About the affairs of the Church in New- 
York, I shall only add to the copy of my former letter, that Rye 
being vacant by the death of Mr. Muirson, there wants a man 
of a peculiar learning, temper and life, to supply that plr.ce, and 
I think no man can be more fitted for that employ than Mr. 
Mackenzie, on Staten Island, in which place he is buried among 
a parcel of French and Dutch, who can't understand him, there 
being but few English there, and a place in which he seldom has 
his health ; the other, a place of ten times the number, and bor- 
dering on Connecticut, where a man of his learning and en- 
gaging temper is very much wanting."'> 

The following memorial in behalf of Mrs. Muirson and Mrs. 
Urquhart, was addressed by the " New- York Missionaries to 
the Bishop of London :" — 


New- York, Nov. 2ith, 1709. 

May it please your Lordship : 
"We think ourselves obliged by the ties of humanity and sa- 

• Conn. MSS. from Archives at Fulham. (Hawks'.) 

"> New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 159, 160. (Hawks'.) 


cred relation of paternity, as well as those of Christian charity 
to the indigent, to make this representation to your Lordship, 
our most worthy Diocesan, and the Venerable Society for the 
Propagation of the Gospel, in the behalf of the virtuous relicts of 
our late deceased Reverend Brethren, Mr. Muirson and Mr. Urqu- 
hart, who present difiicult circumstances, as they extort this our 
petition, so we humbly hope will render them proper objects of 
your commiseration. The former was Missionary of Rye, a 
parish bordering on Connecticut Colony, where God was pleased 
to bless his painful labours with suitable success, and that he 
might not fall under the censure of avarice, or give the least oc- 
casion of any reflection amongst his people, (who were for the 
most part proselytes to the church) he not only frequently parted 
with what, by law, was his just demand, but out of his mission- 
ary allowance of £50 per annum, endeavoured to support him- 
self that he might make the Gospel as little burdensome to 
them as possible, one of the most effectual means to establish the 
Church in these parts, and by his frequent journies to Stratford, 
a town in that Province where he was invited to preach, and 
had a very good prospect of erecting a church for the worship 
of God according to the form and manner of the Church of Eng- 
land, he was put to more than ordinary charges, which, (had 
God granted him a longer life) he might have reaped so much 
advantage from, as to have made a settlement there for the ser- 
vice of our church, and in a great measure repaired the volun- 
tary poverty he had brought upon himself in his endeavours 
to eifect this good work ; but it pleased God to remove him 
in the midst of his labours and dawning of our hopes, by 
which his poor widow, and one son born since his death, are left to 
struggle with some difficulties which we hope the pious zeal of 
your Venerable Society will remove, by an allowance of £50 
sterling, to commence from his death, for one year, to pay his 
just debts contracted in that service, &c., &c. ; and further, 
that the same charitable bounty of a year's salary, may con- 
tinue to be paid to the widows of your missionaries who shall 
hereafter die in the service of the Church, «fcc., &c. 

My Lord, yours, &c., 


Evan Evans, de Philadelphia. Jno. Talbot, de Burlington. 
Jno. Thomas, de Hampstead. Jno. Bartow, de West Chester. 
Jno. Sharp, Chap, to the QtueerSs Forces. C. Bridge, de Rye. 
Samuel Myles, Henry Harris, de Boston."^ 

Mr. Muirson was succeeded in October, 1709, by the Rev. Mr. 
Reynolds. This gentleman appears to have been licensed and 
appointed in England by the Bishop of London, (at the request 
of the Tenerable Society) as Missionary to Rye, but from the 
following letter, it seems he had scarcely arrived at his mission, 
ere the Society revoked their orders, by recalling him after offi- 
ciating here for two or three Sundays. 


Westchester, in America, October 30?A, 1709. 

" I am sorry at the occasion, to acquaint you of the death of 
our late Reverend Brother, Mr. Urquhart, of Jamaica, whose 
place is now supplied by the Rev. Mr. Vesey, Mr. Sharp and the 
Missionaries in the province of New- York, every other Sunday, 
until you can send another curate. 

I lament the unhappy circumstances of the Rev. Mr. Reynolds, 
your Missionary for Rye, who having escaped the danger of the 
seas and a violent sickness after his arrival, and was received with 
joy and satisfaction by Col. Heathcote, and his parishioners, as 
their undoubted minister, and your missionary, whom they 
greatly respected as such, till there came a letter from you, di- 
rected to my Lord Lovelace, deceased, in which our present Gov- 
ernour, Col. Ingoldsby, found your express orders to prohibit him 
from preaching in any part of his government. 
These are judged hard measures by some, and the more, because 
you have given no reason of your rigid proceedings, to the satisfac- 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, toI. i. p. 311, 312, (Hawks'.) 


tion of those who respect and favour him ; but I presume you have 
done nothing but what you thought most requisite to promote 
the interest of Christ's Church, therefore labour that all would 
put such a candid interpretation on this matter as the just cause 
thereof deserves, and I crave leave to testify, that during his 
small stay amongst us, he has behaved himself as becomes a 
sober and religious pastor, and knowing not the cause of your 
displeasure, must (as in duty bound for a distressed brother) re- 
commend him to your favour, as one by his appearance here, well 
worthy his function, and shall be heartily glad if your recall- 
ing him, be intended for his advantage. We hear Mr. Bridge is 
arrived at Boston, and has by your orders to fix himself at Rye. 

Sir, yours, &c., 

John Bartow."» 



who thus superseded Mr. Reynolds, in the charge of this Parish, 
was the son of the Rev. Robert Bridge, •> and was born near 
Tillington, in the County of Essex, A. D. 1672. He received 
his early education in the city of Chester, under Mr. Hancock. 
At the age of seventeen he was admitted to St. John's College, 
Cambridge, as a sub-sizer, under the tuition of Mr. Wigley ; (June 
4th, 1689,)= and in- 1692 took the degree of Batchelor of Arts;* 
After obtaining holy orders, he was appointed assistant minis- 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 208, 209. (Hawks'.) 

■' The Bridge's have been seated for many ages in the Counties of Hereford, Es- 
sex and Lancaster. The arms of Bridge of Bosbury, Hereford and Essex, are : — 
arg. a chief gu. over all, a bend, engr. sa — Crest, two wings endorsed arg. on each 
a chev. engr. sa, charged with a chaplet or. 

•Extract from the admission Books of St. John's College, Cambridge : — "Chris- 
topher Bridge, Castrensis, Alius Robert Bridge, Clerici, natus infra Tillington in 
Comitatu Essenese, Uteris institutus in Civitate Cestrensi sub Mro. Hancock, 
eetatis suae 17 admissus ut subsizator pro Mro. Stiliingfleet, Tutor et fidejussore, 
«jus Mro. Wigley, Junii, 4to. 1689." 

* See lists of Cambridge Graduates. 


ter to the Rev. Mr. Miles, the rector of King's Chapel, Boston, and 
arrived in March, 1699. In 1703, at the request of the vestry, 
Mr. Bridge proceeded to England, in order to solicit subscriptions 
for the enlargement of the chapel, a measure made necessary by 
the increase of the congregation. A misunderstanding about 
this time arose between Mr. Miles and Mr. Bridge, which grew 
into a serious division, and threatened the peace and prosperity of 
the church. The Bishop of London, (Compton) condemned the 
course of Mr. Bridge,.and in his letter to the church says : " There- 
fore I shall not be so earnest for his removal, otherwise than I 
am convinced it is impossible for him and Mr. Miles to live to- 
gether in peace. I know his spirit is too high to submit to that 
subordination which is absolutely necessary he should comply 
with, while he stays at Boston, so that I would by all means, 
advise him to go to Narragansett, where he may have a hundred 
pounds per annum, sterling, besides what perquisites he may 
make upon the place, and then he will be his own master." 

About the first of October, 1706, Mr. Bridge came to Narra- 
gansett. The wardens of King's Chapel spoke of him with re- 
gard and respect, and the Bishop promised him the continuance 
of his favour. 

It however appears that Mr. Bridge, after his settlement in 
Narragansett, created a new difiiculty, as we learn from the 
Bishop's letter to the officers of King's chapel, dated in May, 

1708, he says : " not being yet fully informed to what degree and 
upon what grounds Mr. Bridge hath committed that insolent riot 
upon the church of "Rhode Island." " What is meant by the 
violent riot committed by Mr. Bridge upon the church of Rhode 
Island, alluded to by the Bishop, has not been ascertained."* 

Mr. Bridge did not remain long in Narragansett, but at the 
request of the "Venerable Society removed to Rye, in January, 

1709, when he was again settled in the ministry. His commis- 
sion from the Venerable Society bears date 19th of August, 1709. 
He was not however called by the vestry until April, 1710. 

■ Updike's Hist, of the Narragansett Church, p. 38, 



" To all people to whom these presents shall come. — The Society for ye Propa- 
gation of the Gospel in Fforeign Parts, sends greeting : 

Whereas, Mr. Christopher Bridge, ye bearer hereof, being in Priest's orders, 
hath been sufficiently recommended to ye said Society, and by farther examina- 
tion appears to be a person duly qualified for promoting the good work in which 
ye said Society is engaged ; and whereas, he is by the Right Rey. Father in God, 
Henry, Lord Bishop of London, a member of ye said Society, at the request of 
the said Society, lycensed and appointed to performe all the offices of his sacred 
function at Rye, in New-Yorke, in America : Now, know yee, that ye said So- 
ciety have given and granted unto the said Christopher Bridge, and his assigns, 
and do hereby for themselves and successors, give and grant an annuity or yearly 
pension of the sum of fifty pounds of lawful money of Great Britain, to hold, re- 
ceive and enjoy the same from the feast day of the Nativity of St. John Baptist, be- 
fore the date of these presents, during the pleasure of ye said Society ; the same to 
be paid at the fieast days of St. Michael the Archangel, the Nativity of our Lord, 
ye Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the Nativity of St. John Baptist, 
in every year during their said pleasure, provided always, and on condition that 
the said Christopher Bridge, do without delay at the first opportunity after ye 
date of these presents, transport himself to the said parish of Rye ; and also from 
and after his arrival, continue and reside there, (unless otherwise directed by the 
Society) and do with fidelity and diligence, discharge his holy function : other- 
wise this grant to be void and of none efiect. And the said Society doth hereby 
heartily recommend ye said Christopher Bridge to the protection and blessing of 
Almighty»God, the countenance and fi'avoar of the Honourable the Governour of 
New- York, and the good will of all christian people at Rye aforesaid, for his 
further encouragement and support. 

In witness whereof, ye said Society hath hereunto caused to be sett their com- 
mon seal, this nineteenth day of August, in the year of our Lord 1709, and in the 
eighth year of our Most Gracious Sovereign, Lady Anne, by the grace of God, 
of Great Britain, France and Ireland, Clueen, Defender of the ffaith, &c. 



Col. Heathcote thus writes in behalf of Mr. Bridge : — 



Manor of Scarsdaie, \5th May, 1710. 
Worthy Sir, 
" The chief occasion of this is to acquaint the Society that since 

Doe. Hist, of N. Y. vol. iii. pp. 943-4. 


Mr. Rejrnolds' removal from hence, Mr. Bridge, according to 
the Society's directions hath taken care of this parish in which 
he hath, with great care and industry answered the end of his 
mission ; nor am I under the least doubt but he will continue to 
do the church considerable service, being a gentleman not only 
of extraordinary good parts, but of an active temper. I am very 
much concerned I have cause to tell the Society of a very great 
misfortune which befell him on his removal from Boston to his 
appointed cure, having lost almost all his books and abundance 
of other necessaries ; the vessel in which he sent them being 
chased ashore bya French privateer, and being billged, were all 
either lost or damnified to the value of £150 or £2(J0. This 
mischance happening to him as he was removing in the church's 
service, and it being what he is never like to retrieve in the 
parish, if the Society would be pleased to consider his misfor- 
tune by an allowance for books. 

Yours, (fcc, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

Mr. Neau, of New- York, also writing to the same, on the 5th 
of July, 1710, observes :— " that Mr. Bridge is arrived with his 
family here, where he has spent the winter. I believe him ca- 
pable of edifying his flock. I have sent him several French 
books, he having had the misfortune to loose all his own ; for a 
French privateer forced the sloop that carried them, to run 
ashore, by which means they were all spoiled and lost, and 
the vessel plundered."* 

It appears from the following, that Mr. Bridge did not enter 
into actual possession of his benefice until October, 1710 : — 


Eob'tus Hunter Armiger Provincise Novi Eboraci, nee non Novje Casarise in 
America Stra:egus & Imperator ejusdemq : Vice Admiralis &c. 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 210. (Hawks'.) 
•> New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 316, 217: (H&wKs'.); 


Universis et Singulis Rectoribz Vicar : et Capellar : Curat : Clericis et Min- 
istris quibuscumq in et per totam Provinciam ubilibet Constitutis ae etiam. 

EcclesiiB Parochialis de Rye infra Provinciam Novi Eboraci praedict, pro hoc 
tempore ^dilibus salutem. 

Cum Dilectum in Christo Christopherum Bridge Clericum ad Rectoriam sive 
Ecclesiam Parochialem Predict. Parochiae de Rye in diet. Provincite Novi 
Eboraci in America jam vacantem prsp.sentatum Rectorem Ejusdem Rectoriae 
sive Ecclesise parochialis in et de Eadam Institutus, Vobis Conjunetim et divisim 
Committo et fermiter Injungo Mando, Quatenus eundem Christopherum Bridge 
Cleric, sive procuratorem suum legitimum ejus nomine etpro eo in RealemAc- 
tualem et Corporalem possessionem ipsius Rectorise sive Ecclesiee parochialis de 
Rye prtBdict. Glsebarum, Jurumq : et pertinentium suorum universor. Confe- 
ratis Inducatis, Inducive facialis: et Defendatis Inductnm, Et quid in Premissis 
feceritis me aut ahum Indicem in hac parte competentem quemcumq; debite 
(cum ad id Congrue fueritis Requisit.) Certificetis seu sic certificet ille vestrum 
qui presens hoc Mandatum fuerit Executus. Dat. Sub Sigillo praerogativo diet. 
Provincise Novi Eboraci Decimo Septimo die Octobris Anno Salutis Millesinjo 
Septingentesimo Decimo. 

By His Excellency's command, 

H. WILPMAN, Dep. Secretary.'"- 

January the seventh, Anno Dom. 1710: — "At a lawful meeting 
of the Parishioners, at their Parish Church in Rye, to elect and 
choose Churchwardens and Vestrymen for the year ensuing, 
were elected and chosen : 


Capt. Joseph Theale, Capt, Jonathan Hart, 
Cornelius Seely. 


Andrew Coe, George Lane, Jr., 

John Merritt, Sr., Joseph Lyon, 

Daniel Purdy, Cord/r, George Kniffen, 

Thomas Purdy, John Disbrow, Mamaroneckf 

Thomas Merritt, Jr., John Miller, Bedford, 

Joseph Cleator, Clerk of the Vestry for this year." 

Documentary Hist, of N. Y., vol. iii. 944. 


In accordance with the rules of the Yen. Society, Mr. Bridge 
thus opens a correspondence with them through their Secretary :— 


Rye, 20th Nov. 1710. 
Worthy Sir, 

" About this time twelve-month I wrote to you from Boston, of 
my arrival here, and that I was with utmost diligence preparing 
for my journey to this place, and was necessitated however to stay 
here till the beginning of January, by reason I had my books, 
clothes, and other necessaries on board one of the mast ships at 
Piscataqna, and could not get them sooner to me. In February, 
I wrote you hence of my arrival at this place, and I think 
about the same time Col. Heathcote gave you the like informa- 
tion. This I mention because Mr. Wesendunk, my Attorney, 
acquaints me that the Treasurer deny's to pay him my salary 
for want of information of my being in the place appointed me. 
I made the best haste I could out of England, and stayed at 
Boston no longer than was absolutely necessary, and travelled 
hither, about 240 miles, in extreme bad weather, and the stop- 
ping my salary has been the greater hardship to me because I 
have yet received nothing from this place towards my subsist- 

I must likewise take this occasion to acquaint you that im- 
mediately upon the receipt of my beoks, clothes, &c. from Pis- 
cataqua, I put them, together with what books I had at Boston, 
and such other things as I should have present occasion for, on 
board a sloop bound for New- York. My books I had been 
several years in collecting, and were at a low estimation, worth 
£150 ; my clothes and other necessarys worth 50 or £60 ; with 
them was the box of small books [ received from Mr. Treasurer 
Hodges, for the use of the parishioners of this place. But soon 
after the sloop went out of Boston harbour she was chased by a 
privateer, and to get clear of him run ashore, and bad weather 
coming up, she stove to pieces, and what she had on board was 
lost. As soon as the weather was seasonable, J returned to Boston 


for my family, and then with great trouble and more charge than 
they were worth, recovered a very few of my books that were 
taken up out of the salt water, about 30, but they were so dam- 
nified that they can hardly be used. I could recover nothing of 
my clothes ; some of the books I bought upon credit when last in 
London, of Mr. John Lawrence, at the Angel in the Poultry, and 
they are not yet paid for. I find no library here, that 1 need 
not say how uneasy and dissatisfied I am to be destitute of 
books, and without any company that might supply that want. 
I hoped to borrow out of the library at New- York, but scruples 
were raised against letting ar^y of those books go so far. I 
humbly leave my case with the Honourable Society, and rely on 
their charitable benevolence for some relief and assistance in 
this my necessity. I give you here the best account T can of 
the present state of this parish. The inhabitants are 772, in- 
cluding children, servants, and slaves. The baptized, 441. 
The greatest part of them were baptized before the Church was 
settled here. The communicants 43, several of them are not 
constant, some still Presbyterians or Independents in their 
judgment, but are persons well disposed and willing to partake 
of the Sacrament in what way they can, rather than not at all. 
Those that profess themselves of the Church of England, 284, 
though several of them do very seldom come to church. Dis- 
senters, 468, several of those are serious people and do frequently 
come to church. I reckon all the children according to their 
parents professions, except those that are grown up and profess 
themselves otherwise. Many, both of those that profess them- 
selves of the Church of England and of the Dissenters, are very 
loose, and seem to have little or no regard to religion. Heath- 
ens 24, that are servants in families, besides 4 or 5 families of 
Indians that often, abide in this parish, but are frequently re- 
moving, almost every month or six weeks. Among the Dissent- 
ers are 7 families of Q,uakers, and 4 or 5 families inclining to 
them. The rest are Presbyterians or Independents, transplanted 
out of the Connecticut Colony. I may hereafter be able to give 
a more plear and better account. My care and time hath hith- 


erto been chiefly employed in bringing the young people to 
a regular method of catechising, which I find both very 
necessary and difficult, and in persuading the looser sort of 
the necessity of public worship ; and as from the foregoing ac- 
count the Honourable Society will judge what books may be 
most serviceable when they shall please to supply us with oth- 
ers in the room of those that were lost. So whatever further 
directions and commands they shall be pleased to honour me 
with, shall be most readily observed by, 

Good Sir, 

Yours, (fee, 

Christopher Bridge."* 

It seems from the following letter, that about this period, cer- 
tain violent men in the county, set themselves up to reform the 
Church, or in other words, to deform it ; and would probably 
have succeeded in their diabolical ends, but for the goodness of 
God in raising her up such a defender as Caleb Heathcote, who 
was too conscientious to buy his own peace at her expense : — 


New- York, February lAth, 1711. 

"And as the Devil never wants his agents every where, so 
much about the same time, they began to run upon the like 
strains in Westchester county, and two or three loose and riotous 
men setting up for reformers ; these even raised a storm amongst 
us, and made all the best of the people uneasy, for which I very 
warmly opposing their proceedings, was immediately branded 
as an enemy to the Church, and a hinderer to its growth. Being 
sensible of the danger the Church was in, I firmly resolved to 
do all in my power, to prevent its ruin, and believing it then to be 
no time to take pet and leave her in distress, as her friends in 
Jamaica had done, I went to the Governour and did not only tell 

•New-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 336, 240. (Hawks'.) 


him my mind, but desired to see my accusers or accusations, 
which altho' I never was so happy as to obtain, yet I still con- 
tinued the same method as oft as I heard any complaint was 
made against me, and by God's assistance and these methods, I 
prevented those violent reformers from gaining their ends, and 
prevented the Church's ruin and confusion there ; but the trouble 
I underwent was inexpressible, and* what I would not again un- 
dergo for any other consideration whatsoever. After these storms 
were over, God be thanked, the churches grew and flourished, and 
we have three so well settled, that no dissenting minister of 
any sort can fix himself in any part of that county.""' 

Upon the I2th of December, 1711, Col. Heathcote wrote thus 
to the Secretary: — " I hope the Society will think proper, till ways 
can be found whereby some help may be had, to give the same 
allowance of £100 a year, which was settled on Mr. Muirson. 
If this design goes forward, and great caution is used in the 
choice of a missionary ; I doubt not but experience will convince 
the Society, of his doing the church more real service, than any 
two missionary's in North America besides."'' 

The following minutes are recorded in the vestry book : — 
" May the seventh, Anno Domini, 1711. At a meeting of the 
Justices and Vestrymen, at the church, it was voted and agreed 
that the sum of £55 5s, be levyed on the Parish — 

t is to say, 

for the Minister ... 


for beating the Drum 


for the Clerk 


for charge of Express to Bedford - 


for ye Constable for collecting 

2 12 6 


£55 2 6 

voted also on ye other side, that warrants be issued out for half 
the above-said sum, to be paid on the tenth day of July next 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 359. (Hawks'.) 
•> New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 346. (Hawks'.) 


ensuing, and for ye other half or moyety thereof, which is 
one fourth part of said sum, to be paid on the tenth day of Octo- 
ber next, and the fourth part to be paid on the tenth day of Jan- 
uary next, and that the moyety payable on the tenth day of Ju- 
ly be laid in proportion to the last Quota : — 
that is to say, 

Rye - - - - £17 6 6 

Mamaroneck - - - 3 13 6 

Scarsdale 1 11 6 

Bedford - - - - 5 5 ", » 

The method adopted by Mr. Bridge, to break up the new 
•ectaries in his parish, is very happily related in the following 
extract : — 



Rye, 27th Jul]/, 17 II. 

Worthy Sir, 
" I have not yet been honoured with any thing from you since I 
wrote to your last, a copy of which I sent soon after, and 
hope they have not both miscarried. I then sent you the state 
of this Parish and do now give you another to this time. Num- 
ber of Inhabitants 787 ; number of baptized 452 ; adult per- 
sons baptized since ray last, 3 ; communicants 44 ; that profess 
themselves of the Church of England, 288 ; dissenters 478 ; 
heathen, that are servants in families, 21. 

Several of Cates' followers being in the neighbourhood of this 
parish, they began the last winter to form themselves into a so- 
ciety, and were very busy to invite the neighbours to their meet- 
ings, upon which I acquainted the chief of them, that I should 
be glad to be with them, if they would let me know when they 
held a meeting on a week day ; and after 2 or 3 more debates 

• Church Records of Rye, pp. 1. 2. 


among themselves, wether it was convenient to admit me, they 
at length seni me the time and place where I might meet them, 
and three of their speakers entered into a dispute with me about 
the scriptures, the doctrine of perfection and the divinity, of 
Christ. Their ignorance and extravagance by this means be- 
came so manifest, to a multitude of people that were about us, 
that they could not any longer find room for their insinuations, 
arid soon after forebore their meetings. 

1 am willing to confine myself to the affairs of my own parish, 
but I hope the Honourable Society will not think it amiss, if I 
observe that the want of frequent consultations of the clergy, is 
a great defect in us ; I have taken notice of it to some of my 
brethren, and doubt net, but it would be of great service to Re- 
hgion, if we were obliged sometimes, to meet and consult about 
the aflfairs of our several cures. With humble submission, I be- 
lieve an order from the society, with proper directions, would be 
expedient. There is another thing we may lament, though we 
cannot redress it — The want of zeal in the ofiicers of Justice to 
punish profaneness and immorality. The complaint is general, 
and there is too much occasion for it here. I have sometimes made 
complaint upon good information, of some gross immoralities, 
but without success, for we have one in commission of the peace 
hat has formerly been convicted of a notorious crime, and is 
generally at the head of all our disorders. I have prayed the 
countenance of the Go vernour, and I hope I may obtain it. I 
hope the Honourable Society will be pleased to consider the 
great loss I sustained in their service, for without their assis- 
tance I cannot retrieve it. Their commands shall be always re- 
ceived with due obedience from. 

Your very humble servant, 

Christopher Bridge." » 
During the year 1711, 150 Common Prayer Books with £5 

■ New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, rol. i. 259, 260. (Hawks'.) 


worth of tracts were sent to Mr. Bridge, on his affirmation and 
assurance that they might be bestowed to great advantage. He 
was also allowed for the services of two schoolmasters in the 
Parish, at a distance from his church, where several children 
want instruction, £5 per annum cash, on a certificate that they 
have taught thirty children the Bible, the Catechism and the 
use of the Liturgy.^ 
Mr. Bridge's next report to the Secretary, will afford an idea of 
the state of his parish in 1712, and shows the good success that 
followed his dispute with the ranting Q,uakers.'> 


Rye, June 9th, 1712. 

Worthy Sir, 
" The last you was pleased to honour me with, bears date the 
24th May, 1711, to which I answered the last fall, and inclosed 
as you directed, a catalogue of what books Mr. Muirson left be- 
hind him. I received in April last, the small tracts you men- 
tioned as ordered for me some time ago, together with the Hon- 
ourable Society's bounty of a library of £10 worth of books, of 
which I shall take all possible care to secure them to my succes- 
sors, and as I return my humble thanks for this their benevolence, 
so I must acknowledge my full satisfaction in the choice of books, 
which are such as I should have made my own choice, if I 
had but that sum to purchase with, but I hope the illustrious So- 
ciety will yet be pleased, further to consider that I lost £200 

' Printed abstracts of V."P. Society, from February 15th, 1711-13, to Feb. 
20th, 1713-13. The following curious item is extracted from the Town books, da- 
ted March the 10th, 1711, — " TheRev. Mr. Bridge's ere marks entered in as fol- 
loweth : — a hapeny on the underside of the nere ere, and a crop on the top of the 
of ere, and a hapeny on the foreside of the same." — Town records p. 80, 

•i These were, probably the Keilhians or followers of the famous Geo. Keith, a 
party which seperated from the (iuakers of Philadelphia, in 1691. Their leader 
deserted them and took orders in the Episcopal Church. They were also called 
Qitaker Baptists, because they retained the language, dress, and manner of the 
auakers."— Bucks Theol. Diet. 


in their service, and that I can but barelysupport my family out 
of my salary, that that loss must be heavy upon me, without 
the Society's further charity. 

The present state of my parish stands thus : — Number of In- 
habitants 799 ; of the baptized 469 ; adult persons baptized since 
my last, 4 ; communicants 42. Three of our communicants are 
removed out of the parish, one is dead and two have been lately 
admitted. Number of those that profess themselves of the church 
of England, 313 ; presbyterians 466; heathens that are servants 
of familys, 20. In this account I keep as near as I can the prin- 
ted directions of the Society, but the number of those that pro- 
fess themselves of the Church of England and of the Dissenters, 
can't certainly be stated ; because many of the latter come some- 
times to church, and several of the former are inconstant, but 
both become more sensible to their duty, and attend' the public 
worship more frequently than they used formerly. I bless God 
for the great success of the dispute I had with some of Gates 
followers, whom we call ranting duakers, they have never since 
held a public meeting in these parts, and one of their preachers 
did soon after, before a wittness, make an oath or confession of 
his faith in all the points we then disputed. He owned himself 
fully convinced, and came sometimes to Church, but it pleased 
God soon after, to take him suddenly out of the world. I have 
since baptized two grown persons, of about 30 years old, both 
children of the ringleader of that sect. The case of one of them 
was very remarkable ; he had often said, if any religion was true 
it must be theirs, but according to the principles of that sect, led 
a very loose and extravagant life, but upon hearing their errors 
confuted, desired baptism, and when he received it, declared 
to his parents and kindred in very solid terms, the ground of so 
doing, and earnestly exhorted them and his former. companions, 
to forsake their errors, and wicked courses, and by his whole 
carriage and discourses with them, silenced their reproaches. 

There are two places in this parish at great distance from the 
Church. If the Honourable Society will be pleased to make some 
small allowances to them, there might be found proper persons 


here to undertake that charge, to the great benefit of many poor 
children that want instruction. I have disposed of the small 
tracts I received, and could bestow more with great advantage ; 
for we have had none sent hither of a long time. I humbly pray 
that some Common Prayer books might be sent, for they are 
much wanted. I hope the stated meetings of the missionaries 
which we have now agreed upon, will be pleasing to the Society, 
and their directions, as they will be of great service and advan- 
tage to us, too, will be received by us with a due submission and 
regard. I beg the continuance of their patronage, and am, good 

Your very obedient servant, 

Christopher Bridge."* 

At a meeting of the Vestry, at the church in Rye, the twenty- 
ninth day of July, A. D. 1712, Mr. Bridge communicated to the 
vestry, the following order and letter from his Excellency : — 

" You are to give order forthwith (if the same be not already 
done) that every orthodox minister within your government, be 
one of the vestry in his respective parish, and that no vestry be 
held without him, except in case of sickness, or that after notice 
of vestry summoned, he omit to come. 

Rev. Sir, this copy of her Majesty's instructions, I have thought 
fit to direct to the several ministers within this Province, that 
their respective vestries may regulate themselves accordingly ; 
and if there be any practice contrary thereunto, I desire you may 
duly inform me, that effectual care may be taken therein. 
I remain. Reverend Sir, 

Your assured Friend and Servant. 

Robert Hunter.'' 

To the Rev. Mr. Christopher Bridge. 

Minister of Rye, in ye County of 


• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 369, 372. (Hawks'.) 
b Church Records of Rye. 


The Society's abstracts for 1714, say: that "Mr Bridge of 
Rye, had reduced many who were brought up in a very disso- 
lute way of living, and to total neglect of public worship, to a 
more sober conversation, and a constant attendance on the wor- 
ship of God, using his utmost endeavours to put a stop to many 
disorderly practices, which had prevailed among the people, to 
the great reproach of religion. The same year the Propaga- 
tion Society presented to Mr. Huddleston, schoolmaster in Rye, 
£5 additional salary, and to Mr. Bridge, common prayer books 
and devotional tracts, of which the people were very desirous 
before he wrote, and heartily thankful for them since. To these 
donations the Society added two dozen prayer books for Mr. 
Huddleston, with the old version of the singing, and as many of 
Lewis' Church catechism, for exercise in his school or on morn- 
ings of the Lords days, (when not only his own scholars, but 
several of the young people of the town, of both sexes, came 
willingly to be informed,) one dozen bibles with the common 
prayer and the new version of psalms, twenty-five psalters, and 
fifty-one primers, all which he requested as contributing might- 
ily, to the spreading the good work he has in hand, having 
taught besides British children, six hundred Dutch and French, 
to read and write English." 

Surely such zealous efforts, to promote the glory of God, and 
the good of souls, well deserved the aid and assistance of the 

In 1717, the Society requested some further particulars, rela- 
ting to the parish ; in answer to which Mr. Bridge says : — 


Rye, July 30th, 1717. 


" The first episcopally ordained minister that officiated here 

was the unfortunate Mr. Pritchard, he was succeeded by Mr. 

Muirson, who came hither in the year 1705, and died 1708, after 

whose decease the Church was vacant (excepting two or three 


Sundays that Mr. Reynolds preached here) till I arrived in Jan- 
uary, 1709-10. I was called by the vestry in April following, 
as the act of Assembly directs, and soon after had induction 
from the present Governour. Before the Society was incorporated 
^and while this town was under the government of Connecticut, 
they had two or three dissenting ministers in that place, but the 
generality of the people being such as would not willingly 
contribute to the support of any minister. However, some few of 
the inhabitants having more zeal, they found ways to build a 
small parsonage house, and annex to it three acres of land, which 
is all the glebe we have, and at my first coming here, I found 
the house so much decayed, that it was scarce habitable. In 
the year 1 706, some extraordinary methods were used to induce 
the town to raise a tax for building a church, and they raised a 
handsome outside, and covered and glazed it, but found nothing 
done to the inside, not so much as a floor laid. When I had 
for a year or two preached upon the' ground, I got subscriptions 
for about £50, among the inhabitants towards finishing the in- 

I have no great alterations in the state of my parish to give 
you an account of — since my last I have baptized 10 adult per- 
sons. It is my constant care to watch the motions of the Qua- 
kers, to prevent their seducing any of my parishioners, (for they 
come frequently in great numbers from Long Island, and other 
places, to hold their meeting in the outpartsof my parish) and to 
put an end to those riotous and unruly practices, which to the 
scandal of all religion had so much prevailed here ; but I hope, 
thro' God's assistance, I shall be able to subdue that spirit of pro- 
faneness. I take all occasions in my public discourses, and my 
private exhortations, to show the great enormity and dangerous 
consequences of them.""- 

We shall now conclude Mr. Bridge's reports with the follow- 
ing extract from the letter books of the Venerable Society : — 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. i, 541-2. 



Rt/e,Nov. uth, inr. 


" Many of them being ^duakers and such others as have 

never she\V-ed any regard to religion, under any denomination 
whatsoever. Tis our great misfortune here, that our vestries 
are made up of such persons ; especially when they are apprehen- 
sive that we have any design to raise money for the repair or 
other services of the church, as it was our case at the last elec- 
tion, and I doubt will be so at the ensuing one, and is what I 
think, very much amiss in Mr. Cleator, that instead of being ad- 
vised by me, he seeks to shelter his neglect under the recom- 
mendation secretly obtained of professed Q,uakers, and some 
other persons of the loosest carriage among us. There are in 
Stratford, and the neighbouring towns in Connecticut, about 36 
communicants of the church of England, and within these few 
years, I find there have been about 24 adult persons, and between 
70 and 80 children baptized by me, and other missionaries of 
the Society, who have occasionally been there ; they seem ex- 
tremely desirous to have a minister settled among them."* 

The Rev. Christopher Bridge, finished his earthly pilgrimage 
at Rye, on Friday, the twenty-second of May, 1719, and was in- 
terred in his parish church. 

There is this record of the event in the minutes of the vestry : — 
" The Reverend Mr. Christopher Bridge, died the twenty-second, 
and was buried on Monday, the twenty-fifth day of May, Anno 
Domini, 1719, having been minister at Rye, ten years and four 
months." i> 

The following obituary, is copied from the Boston News Let- 
ter, a weekly paper, and the first newspaper published in Bos- 
ton, where it was commenced in 1704. The date of this num- 

• New-York MSS. from Archives at Falham, vol. i. p. 534. (Hawks'.) 
i> Church Records,!). 16. 


ber is from June 1st to 8th, 1719. "We have an account from 
Rye, in the government of New- York, of the death of the Rev. 
Mr. Bridge, M. A. a presbyter of the church of England, gind 
minister of the Gospel in that place, who died on Saturday, the 
23d of May last. He was formerly, for many years together, 
one of the ministers of the church of England in Boston, a re^ 
ligious and worthy man, a very good scholar and a fine, grave 
preacher, his performances in the pulpit, were solid, judicious 
and profitable, his conversation was agreeable and improving, 
and though a strict churchman in his principles, yet of great 
respect and charity to dissenters, and much esteemed by them 
He was bred at the University of Cambridge, in England, and 
was about forty-eight years of age when he died, Very much la- 

His last will and Testament was proved on the 25th of June, 


" Iw THE NAMB OF GoD AMEN. The eighth day of May, in the year of our Lord 
Christ, one thousand seven hundred and eighteen and nineteen, I, Christopher 
Bridge, Rector of the parish of Rye, &c., in the county of Westchester, in the 
Colony of New- York, in America. Although sick in body, yet of good, perfect 
and sound memory, praised be Almighty God, I therefore do make and ordain 
this, my present will and Testament, containing therein my last will, in manner 
and form following : First, I commend myself, and all my whole estate, to the 
mercy and protection of Almighty God, being fully persuaded, by his Holy Spirit 
through the death and passion of Jesus Christ, to obtain full pardon and remission 
of all my sins, and to inherit everlasting life, to which the Holy Trinity, one 
eternal Deity be known, and glory forever, Amen. And as for the disposal of my 
worldly estate, I will, and ordain, that after my decease, my debts which I happen 
to owe, and funeral expenses, shall be first paid. Item, it is my will that all my 
estate which I have, in this world, either in possession or reversion, or remainder, 
or otherwise, howsoever, be the same Real or Personal, after my decease, shall 
be divided into three equal part or parts, which I give, devise and bequeath, as fol- 

• Greenwoods Hist, of King's Chapel, Boston, p.72. The Rev. A. Fowler says 
of Mr. Bridge : " that he laboured himself in all respects, worthy the high and 
sacred character of a Clergyman, and the members of his parish increased greatly 
at Rye. He had for several years past an indifferent state ot health, and died in 
W19.- Fowler's MSS. Biog. of the Clergy. 


lows, (viz :) one third part thereof, to my dear and loving wife, Elizabeth Bridge : 
To have and to hold the same to her, the said Elizabeth Bridge, her heirs and as- 
signees for ever. Another third part to my children, by even and equal portions, 
share and share alike, to be equally divided amongst them. To go to (hem each, 
an equal dividend thereof, and to each of their heirs and assignees for ever. The 
other third part, I give and bequeath likewise to my children, but to be given or 
distributed to them, according to the discretion of my said wife, Elizabeth, as 
she shall see meett ; and to the end, that this, my last will and Testament, may in 
every particular devise the better to be performed, I make my said [loving wife, 
Elizabeth Bridge, whole and sole executrix, and it is my will, that she in that 
station, shall bargain, sell and dispose of all my estate above mentioned, and 
when sold, to give good and sufficient conveyances in the law, for the same, which 
shall be valid and a barr against my heirs for ever. The consideration money, 
arising from such sale, being divided in three parts, and paid to the uses above 
divised and bequeathed ; and that this my said last will, may be the more effect- 
ually executed ; it is my further will and desire, that if in case my said Executrix 
should happen to dye, before the full execution thereof, that the said will, and 
the final full execution thereof, shall be managed and executed by my loving 
friends, David Jameson, Esq., John Bartow, Rector of the parish of Westchesteri 
&c., and Mr. Elias Neau, of the city of New- York, merchant, and the survivor 
and survivors of them, whose assistance in the execution of this my last will, and 
I intrust and depend upon ; and now revoking all other wills and Testamenlis, 
heretofore by me made, I declare this to be my last will. In witness whereof, I 
have hereunto set my hand and seal, the day and the year first above written. 


Signed, sealed, published, and delivered in the presence of us, Joseph Cleator, 
Samuel Wiley, Samual Haight." » 

"At a meeting of the Justices and Vestry at the school house in 
Rye, August 21st, Anno Domini, 1719, to examine the receipts 
and disbursements of ye late Rev. Mr. Bridge, concerning ye 
finishing of ye church ; and also to consider of his salary, and 
what money to be thought necessary to repair the church, and 
to choose proper persons to see ye same repaired ; there ap- 
peared : — 

Capt. Joseph Budd, Justice. 
J°hn Haight, } f Caleb Hyatt, 

David Ogden, ^ ^ Henry Fowler, 

Robert Bloomer, ) Vestrymen. i John Disbrow. 

John Brundige, 

' Record of Wills, Surrogates office, New- York, vol; ix. 72; 73. 


First : They examined the accounts then produced, and there 

found due to Maddm. Bridge, - - - - &2 
and for Mr. Bridge's salary, - - . - 16 U 

The money designed for the ministers rate and other things 
as will appear by this book, was £56 3s. 

Ordered by the justices and vestry abovesaid, that of ye said 
sum, thirty three pounds be applyed and made use of for re- 
pairing of the parish church of Rye, according to Act of Assem- 

Mr. Cleator, schoolmaster at Rye, in his report to the Secre- 
tary for ] 719, says : " That he has taught in the last year, about 
fifty children to read and write, and instructed those that were 
capable of learning, in the church catechism.''^ 

Upon the death of Mr. Bridge, we find the enemies of the 
church, who could without any scruple revile her services and 
doctrines, coveting her small possessions and accommodations. 
Their objects, however, were happily defeated by the vigilance 
of Mr. Vesey, the Bishop's Commissary. 


( This letter has no date.) 

Rev. Brother, 
" I have been credibly informed that since the death of the 
Rev. Mr. Bridge, late minister of Rye, the Dissenters have made 
some attempts to possess themselves of the church in that town, 
and introduce an Independent teacher : wherefore, to frustrate 
their designs, and to keep our brethren steady in their profes- 
.'sion, i desire the favourof you to officiate in that church in your 
order with the clergy of this province, till my Lord of London, 

» Church Records, p. 16. 

* Printed Abstracts of Ven Prop. Soc. 



or the Venerable Society send a minister to supply that vacant 
parish. This I earnestly recommend to you, and remain, 

Yours, &c., 

Wm. Vesey." 

The order which the Reverend Clergy of the province of 
New- York will take to officiate in the parish of Rye : 

" The Rev. Mr. Bondet, 

the 2nd of August, 

" " " Bartow, 

« I6th of " ' 

« " « Thomas, 

" 13th of September, 

« « " Poyer, 

" 30th of August, 

" " " McKenzie, 

" 27th of September, 

" " " J«nney, 

" 11th of October, 

" " " Vesey, 

" 25th of October." « 

Having provided for the immediate wants of the parish, Mr. 
Vesey addressed the following letter to the Secretary ; requesting 
that another minister might be sent, and earnestly recommend- 
ing the afflicted widow and children to the Society's protec- 


' New-York, Nov. 15, 1719. 

" 1 have lately given you an account of the method I proposed 
to the clergy for officiating in the church at Rye, now vacant by 
the death of the Rev. Mr. Bridge, the clergy have officiated at 
their own expense there in their order, and will continue to do 
so till the Venerable Society shall please to send a minister to 
that parish. 

That church being thus supply'd without any charge to the 
parishioners or to the Society, I presume from hence to recommend 
the afflicted widow and her poor children, as proper objects of 
the Society's compassion, earnestly praying that one year's sal- 

» New- York, MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 557, 558. (Hawks'.) 


ary, commencing from Mr. Bridge's death, may be given for 
their support. I shall only observe on this^ occasion, that a mis- 
sionary dismist by the Society, is allowed, as I am informed, 
one year's salary after his dismission ; if therefore, one of these 
missionaries is removed by death, and the vacancy supplied by 
his brethren, it may be thought charitable at least, to do some- 
thing of that nature towards the subsistence of his widow and 
children in their melancholy circumstances, which is neverthe- 
less humbly submitted to the consideration of the "Venerable 
Society, by your most obedient and humble servant. 

William Vesey." »■ 

On the 16th of January, 1720-1, it was agreed by the vestry 
of the parish, " that Capt. Budd, the two churchwardens, Henry 
Fowler and Daniel Purdy, two of the vestry, should draw up a 
letter to ye Hon. Col. Heathcote and the Rev. Dr. Vesey, desiring 
their advice and assistance in procuring a minister for the parish 
of Rye," (fccb 

In 1720-1, the Rev. Thomas Poyero appears to have officiated 
statedly here ; for at an adjourned meeting of the vestry, held on 
the 28th of February, A. D. 1720-1, " It was agreed to pay to 
the Rev. Mr. Foyer the just and full sum of twelve pound, ten 
shillings, for his service done to this Parish as a niinistei', and 
that he be continued minister of this parish, with this proviso, 
that the Honourable Society for Propagating ye Gospel in 
Foreign Parts do allow it.""* 

In 1721-2, the Venerable Society voted £50 to the clergy 

* New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i, p. 559. (Hawks'.) 

i" Church Records, p. 17. 

<= " The Rev. Thomas Foyer, was a grandson of Col. Foyer, who fell in the de- 
fence of Pembroke Castle, in the time of Oliver Cromwell, and was the successor 
of Mr. Urquhart, at Jamaica. He arrived in the Colony during the summer of 
1710, and was inducted by power from Col. Hunter, July 18th, of that year." 

i Church. Records, p. 17. 


of New-York for supplying the church at Rye, vacant by the 
death of the Rev. Mr. Bridge. ^ 


Jamaica, Feb. Wth, 1719. 

Hon. Sir, 

" I make no doubt of your being informed of the death of the 
Rev. Mr. Bridge, late pastor of the Church at Rye, and that the 
Honourable Society have ordered another to succeed him. 

I am just returned from serving that church in my turn, ac- 
cording to an agreement between the ministei-s of this province ; 
and cannot but acquaint you that most of the inhabitants, some 
communicants, are doing what they can to pull down what the 
established ministers — [sic in MSS.] They have resolved to call 
one Mr. Buckingham, a Dissenting minister, and have accord- 
ingly sent to acquaint him of it. I was then at Rye, in company 
with a great many of them, and did all that I could to bring 
them into a better mind in that respect, after which they told 
me their resolution was this, that they were so well satisfied 
with me and my conduct, that th^y would call no other than 
myself, and that if I would not accept of their call,' they knew 
one, naming the aforesaid Mr. Buckingham, that would ; so 
they desired my answer, and I told them I would write home to 
the Honourable Society about it the first opportunity, (not at all 
expecting to meet with this ship that I thought sailed some 
weeks ago,) and I questioned not but they would order me to 
Eye, on which I find they have resolved to call me ; had I known 
of this ship in those parts, I would have got the Churchwardens 
and Testry called, and sent it -herewith, but expect this per next 

I have not time now to write to my Lord of London, my much 
honoured Diocesan, and pray that this may be communicated 
to him, and that what is necessary from the Venerable Society, 

-* Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 


and that worthy Lord, in order to removal, be sent to me per 
the next opportunity. 

I trust there are none of my most honoured Patrons, do en- 
tertain so hard a thought of me as to believe I have any pros- 
pect of a temporal advantage by this removal. No, God knows 
I have not indeed, I must say that I cannot have, for besides 
that Jamaica is a much pleasanter place, where I have abund- 
antly better conversation than can be had at Rye, and then the 
allowance from the country, for the Minister, is £10 per annum 
more here than there. I assure you if riches were my aim, I had 
invitations enough, and between £400 and £500 per annum, 
offered me if I would have removed .from here, into the West 
Indies, but those arguments, powerful enough to induce some, 
I thank God, have not been able to prevail with me to leave the 
church over which, though most unworthy, I was thought fit to 
be appointed overseer, in so much troubles ; its nothing but the 
peace of the church that has inclined me to listen to the fre 
quent requests of the people at Rye, they have promised me if 
I would come to them, they would be united in their affections, 
and one and all come to hear me. 

May the Lord Jesus Christ, the great and good master of the 
flock, make me under him, a happy instrument in uniting the 
people in making up the divisions among them, and quenching 
the flames that blaze out. 

I present my utmost duty to my ever honoured Patrons, hearti- 
ly, earnestly, and constantly praying for them, and to beg Sir, 
you'll please excuse this haste, and to send an answer per first 

opportunity, to • 

Honoured Sir, 

Your humble servant, 

Thomas Poyer." 

The Rev. John Thomas of Hempstead, L. L, writing to the 
Secretary, April 20th, 1722, makes the following statement, in 
regard to the necessity of a minister for the vacant parish : — 

" The want of a missionary so long at Rye, has introduced a 
dissenter to build his nest there, but I believe a discreet gentle- 


man sent over; would soon unnest hint;, and discourage him in 
his undertaking. The people there are very poor, and incapa- 
ble to maintain two differing ministers, had they a churchman 
to perform divine service, and preach every Lords day, their 
dissenter must of necessity give way and be gone."a 

About one month after the date of this letter, the Society 
were pleased to appoint the Rev. Henry Barclay, formerly mis- 
sionary to Albany, to Rye, with a salary of fiSO.!" Upon the 

22d day of 1722, Mrs Barclay writes from Albany, " that 

she has received a letter from Mr. Secretary Humphrey's, dated 
the fifth of September last, whereby your honours signify your 
having received him, (Mr. Barclay,) to your missionary, and 
have appointed him the choice of removing either to Rye, or 
Jamaica, in New- York government, <fcc., (fcc."" The same year 
the Society gave Mr. Barclay £10 in consideration of the hard 
circumstances he lieth under;^ 

At a meeting of the Churchwardens and Vestrymen, of this 
parish, June the 4th. Anno Domini 1722, the following call was 
given, in accordance with the, act of 1693 : — 

" Whereas, by the death ,^of our late Incumbent, the Rev. 
Mr. Christopher Bridge, this Parish is become vacant, we there- 
fore, the Church-wardens of the said parish, pursuant to ye 
tenour and intent, of an act of General Assembly of this Province, 
entitled, an act for settling a ministry, and raising a maintenance 
for them in the city of New-York, county of Richmond, West- 
chester and Queens county, do call the Reverend Mr. Robert 
Jenney, to ofBciate and have the care of souls within this parish 
of Rye, aforesaid. And the said Mr. Robert Jenney, personally 

* New-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 577. (Hawks'.) 

'' Printed Rep. of Ven. Prop. Society. 

" New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. "579. (Hawks'.) 

"■Printed Rep. ofVen, Prop. Society. "The Rev. Henry Barclay was father 
of the late Thomas Barclay, Consul General of his Brittanic Majesty, in the U. S. 
so well known and so highly esteemed by thousands among us, and whose place 
as British Consul, is at this moment so worthily filled by Mr. Anthony Barclay, 
■one of hissons." 


came before this board and informed them, he was ready to ex- 
ecute the functions he was called unto, when he should be in- 
ducted into the same. Whereupon it is ordered, that this board 
do forthwith present the said Robert Jenney, and pray his Ex- 
cellency, for his induction into ye Church of the said Parish, 
with all and singular the rights, privileges and appurtenances 
to the same belonging, or in any ways appertaining. By order 
of the Churchwardens and Vestrymen. 

John Carhartt, Clerk."^ 

The following letters were also addressed to the Governor, the 
Venerable Society, and the Bishop of London: — 


June Ath, 1722. 
May it please your Excellency, 

We, the Churchwardens and Vestrymen of the Parish of Rye, 
being informed by the Rev. Mr. Jenney, that your Excellency 
has consented to his design of complying with our desire, to 
settle among us, and has given him leave to divide his time be- 
tween his duty of the garrisoij and t|;iis parish, till such time as 
his confirmation can be obtained from the Venerable Society, do 
take the liberty to present to your Excellency, our hearty thanks 
for this condescention in our favour, humbly praying your Excel- 
lency, to grant induction to the said Mr. Jenney, into ye said par- 
ish of Rye, when, according to law, we have called thereto, as 
will appear to your Excellency, by ye enclosed. ^We are with all 
duty and submission — May it please your Excellency, your Ex- 
cellency's most dutyful and most obedient humble servants. 

[Signed by order.] 

John Carhartt, Clerk."^ 

» Church Records, p. 30. 



June Uh, 1722. 

May it please your Honours, 

"We, the Churchwardens and Vestrymen of ye Parish of Rye, 
in ye province of New- York, in America, having taken ye lib- 
erty soon after ye death of our late incumbent, the Rev. Mr. 
Christopher Bridge, humbly to pray that your honours would 
continue your usual bounty to our poor church, and supply us 
in our destitute condition, with a church of England minister 
in the room of our late incumbent ; do take this opportunity to 
return your honours our hearty thanks, as well for the constant 
supply, which by your honour's favourable recommendation we 
had from the clergy of this province, as for your resolution, ap- 
pearing in print, to supply us with a minister to reside among 
us, as soon as one whom your honours can approve of, shall of- 
fer. We have been to our great detriment, destitute about three 
years, and now having the opportunity of one whom we are 
universally pleased with, ye Rev. Mr. Robert Jenney, chaplain 
of the forces of this province, who is willing to relinquish his 
place in the forces, to settle amongst Us and become our minis- 
ter, provided he can have your ^honours favour and bounty for 
his encouragement. We have taken the liberty to give him a 
call, as ye act of Assembly of this province empowers us, (which 
is enclosed to your honour) humbly praying for yonr approba- 
tion, of what we have done, and that you will please to grant 
unto him as our minister, your favour and bounty, being a per- 
son whose conversation, preaching, and diligence in his holy func- 
tion we are well acquainted and satisfied with. We are confi- 
dent that his residence amongst us, will effectually reconcile all 
our differences, and heal all our breaches, occasioned by our 
being so long in want of a faithful and prudent pastor, to guide 
and instruct us. That God Almighty will prosper your honours 
pious and charitable endeavours for the service of his Church, 
in this Wilderness, and that he will grarit unto every one of you, 


the- choicest of his blessings, temporal and eternal,, is the hearty- 
prayer of — 

May it please your Honours, 

Your Honours most dutyful 

And most obedient and humble servants, 
[Signed by order.] 

John Carhartt, Clerk."^ 

The letter to the Bishop of London was as follows r — 

May it please your Lordship, 

" The necessity of our Church requiring a speedy relief, and 
the favourable opportunity offering of the Rev. Mr. Jenney's in- 
clination to settle amongst us, we the Churchwarden's andTes- 
trymen of the Parish of Rye, in New- York, in ^merica, have 
readily accepted thereof, and given him a call as required by 
the laws of this Province, hoping what we have done, will 
pi'ove agreeable to your Lordship and the Venerable Society, 
with whom we beg your Lordship's kind offices for ye contin- 
uance of their bounty to our parish in ye person of the said Mr. 
Jenney, as our Minister — we humbly presume to subscribe our- 

May it please your Lordship, 

Your Lordship's most dutyful 

Sons, and most obedient humble Servants, 
[Signed by order.] 

John Carhartt, Clerk." 

" The above letter to the Bishop of London, was enclosed to 
the Rev. Mr. William Vesey, in New- York, giving him an ac- 
count of our proceedings, and to pray his furtherance of our let- 
ter, to the Bishop, and his recommendatory one with it.'"' 

The Society were pleased to confirm the call of the Vestry, on 
the 30th of August, 1722, by appointing the 

■ Church Records, p. 21. 
•> Church Records, p. 23. 



Missionary to Rye, with a salary of £50, in tiie room of Mr. 
Barclay. Mr. Jenney was the son of the Venerable Henry Jen- 
ney, of Wanney Town,* in the North of Ireland, (Archdeacon of 
Armagh,) descended of the Jenney's, formerly of Knoddis Hall 
in SuflFolk county, Englatid.b He was born in the county of 
Armagh, A. D. 16S8, and educated in Dublin, under Dr. Jones. 
On the 13th of October, 1704, he was matriculated, as a pen- 
sioner at Trinity College, Dublin, and selected for his tutor, Mr. 
John Wetherby, a fellow of that College. In 1710, he was ad- 
mitted into holy orders, and soon afterwards appointed to a 
chaplaincy in the royal navy, in which service he continued un- 
til 1714 ; from thence to 1717, he was in the employ of the Ven- 
erable Society, as an assistant to the Rev. Evan Evans of Phila- 
delphia, and subsequently to the Rev. Mr. Vesey, of New- York. 
From 1717 to 1722, he was Chaplain to the Fort and Forces at 
New- York, and was then, as we have seen, appointed by the So. 
ciety to this parish. « 

The new Incumbent was regularly inducted as Rector of 

* See America Dissected, in Updike's History of the Narraganset Church, p.495. 

'' This family, originally of Prance, assumed its surname from the town of 
Guisnes, near Calais. It probably came into England, with the Conqueror- 
for Bloomfield states that proprietors of the name of De Gisneto, De Gisne, or Gy- 
ney, were soon after the Conquest possessed of the Manor of Haverland, in Nor- 
folk, and that they held it until the time of Henry V. From that house it would 
appear that the one before us branched, and that the name in process of time 
changed from Gyney to Jenney, the mode in which it has been spelt, since the 
beginning of the 15th century at least. 

In the 9th of Richard II, (1385) Thomas, son of Sir Thomas De Gyney, Knt. 
enfeoffed his manor of Gislingham in Suffolk, called Geneys, which he had there 
purchased of John De Wayland. This manor still bears the name of Jennies. 
The arms of this family are : — Erm, a bend gu. cotised or. Crest, on a glove infess 
arg. a hawk or falcon close or, belled of the last. — Burkes Hist, ofj^^the Commo- 
ners, vol. iii. 446. 

» The following extract is taken from the Matriculation Book of Trinity Col- 
lege, Dublin. " October 13, — 1704, Robertus Jenney, Pentionarius filius Hen. T. 
D. Aun age 16— nat in Com. Ardmachensi — Educ. Dublin, sub Dr. Jones— CoU 
tutor John Wetherby." 


Rye, by the Rev. Thomas Poyer, of Jamaica, L. I., in virtue of 
Governour Burnet's mandate, bearing date, June the 7th, 1722, 
of which the following is a copy : — 


" Gulielraus Burnet armiger Provincise, Novi Eboraci, nee non 

Novae Ca:sari£e in America, Strategus et Imperator Ejasdemq 

Vice Admiralis &c. 

Universis et singulis Clericis et ministris Ecclesia Anglicanse Q,uibut.cumque 

in et per totam provinciam Novi Eboraci ubilibet constitutis sive iEdilibus Eccle- 

siae parochialis de Rye infra provinciam Novi Eboraci praedict pro lioc tempore 


Cum Dilectum in Christo Robertum Jenney, Clericum ad Rectoriam sive Ec- 
clesiam parociiialem praedict parochiae de Rye, in dicta provincia Novi Eboraci 
in America, jam vacantera ipsumque prsesentatum Rectorem Ejusdem Rectorise 
siveEcclesias parochialis in et de eadem institutus, vobis conjunctrm et devisim 
committo et fermiter injungendo mando quatenus eundem Robertum Jenney, 
Clericum sive procuratorem suum legitimum ejus nomine et pro se in realem, 
actualem et Corporalem possessionem ipsius Rectorise et Ecclesite parochialis de 
Rye prEBdicto Glsbarum Juriumque et pertinentium suorum universorum confe- 
ratis inducatis inducive faciatis et Inductum Defendatis et quid in praemissis 
feceritis seu ant alium judicem in hac parte competentem quemcumque debite 
(cum ad id congrue fueritis requisiti) certificetis, seu sic certificet ille vestrum 
qui preesens hoc meum mandatum fuerit executus. Datum sub sigillo pr^roga- 
tivo dietsB provinciae Novi Eboraci Septimo die Junii, Anno Salutis, MDCCXXII. 

By his Excellency's command, 

Jas. Robin, Dep, Sec.'" 
At an adjourned meeting of the vestry, held June the 25th, 
1722, present the Rev. Mr. Jenney and others, " It was resolved 
by a majority of votes, that the parsonage house be repaired by 
a tax laid on the parish, and that the salary (viz. £50) for this 
present year, be also raised as follows : — 

To be laid out and paid, 

Rye, £ 33 6 0. To ye Minister 50 0. 

Bedford, 10 119. To ye Clerk of _the vestry I 0. 

Mamaroneck, 7 13 3. To ye Drummer 1 0. 

Scarsdale, 3 6 6. To Constable for collecting 2 12 .0. 

£54 12 0. £54 12 0. 

' Record of Commissions, Sec. of State's office, vol. p. 497. 


In December following, Mr. Jenney made his first report to 
the Society. 


Rye, Dec. 15th, 1722. 

Dear Sir, 

" I had the honour of yours, dated August 30th, which brought 
me an account that the Yenerable Society has accepted me as 
their missionary to settle at Rye, with a salary of £50 per an- 
num, and which, with humble and hearty thanks, I readily ac- 
cept, and my desiring a larger salary, in my last to the Venera- 
ble Society, was for no other reason, but because £60 per an- 
num with the county encouragement, would but amount to what 
I have quitted in the fort for their service, and because this parish, 
with respect to the encouragement here, stands upon a much 
worse footing than any of the rest of this province, in relation 
to the salary, house, and glebe. Those on Long Island, having 
£10 per annum more, and all of them glebes much beyond what 
this Parish ; affords and this being the nearest parish to N ew Eng 
land, and the only one on the post road, and consequently attended 
with greater expenses than any of the rest, I did not think it 
unreasonable to request an addition of £10 to the Society's sala- 
ry ; but in this and all other things, I humbly submit to the So- 
ciety's pleasure. 

You may remember, I sent you the vestry's call, what they 
gave me according to an act of Assembly, of this Province, and 
their humble address to the Venerable Society for their confirma- 
tion, dated June 4th, 1722, and it was then that I entered upon 
the care of this parish and have since continued diligently, to 
serve it, excepting sometimes the Governor required me to offi- 
ciate at the Fort, ray successor there having not yet received his 
commission. I observe in the Society's collection ye papers 
■which I received from Mr. Huddleston, with two copies of the 
missionary sermon, by the Right Rev. the Lord Bishop of Bristol, 
that the Society expects fi-om their missionaries an exact and 


particular account of tile state of their respective parislies, in 
compliance with which I take the liberty to send enclosed a 
draft of the two lots of land, which make up the glebe, with a 
copy of the survey which the violent opposition of some dissen- 
ters have obliged me to obtain for the proprietors of this town, 
being the most part such as were desirous of having a dissent- 
ing teacher settled here, gave me great trouble at my first com- 
ing, and especially in relation to the house and glebe ; and had 
not His Excellency been so kind as to grant his warrant to the 
surveyor General to survey, it is believed they would have kept 
me by force, from taking possession, and here I cannot but men- 
tion the kindness of the Surveyor General, Cadwallader Col- 
den, Esq., and Mr. Wra. Forster, the society's schoolmaster at 
Westchester, whom he appointed his deputy for that purpose, 
who have refused the fees which by law are due for that ser- 
vice, and have remarkably exerted themselves in the service of 
our Church at Rye. 

When I first examined into the glebe, I found one lot called 
the parsonage point, containing about 5 acres, as I am informed, 
alienated from the church by patent, to my predecesssor Mr. 
Bridge and his family forever, and is now possessed by his ex- 
ecutrix, for the use of his children ; that remaining, is represent- 
ed- in the enclosed draft of two lots, one of which, called the 
house lot, having the house at the south east corner, contains a 
little above two acres, the other about 7 and a half, and is about 
a mile off, but is so encompassed with other men's land that the 
road to it is about two miles, so that I fear I shall have little or 
no use of it. The house is of timber, and so much out of repair 
that nothing but the frame stands good, and the lots of land are 
wholly out of fence. The Church also, though built in Mr. Muir- 
son's time is not yet finished ; the roof decays, but if not quick- 
ly fitted up, is not likely to stand long. These repairs call for 
a good supply of money, and the people will not contribute vol- 
untarily, so that I have been forced to demand of the vestry, to 
raise for that use, so much of the salary since Mr. Bridge's death, 
as has been omitted, and upon their refusal I have thought my- 
self obliged to engage a lawyer, Mr. Bickeley, (who because it is 


the church's cause, has refused his fee) to move the chief Justice 
for a mandamus, to oblige them to raise it, and when it shall be 
raised, I am resolved to lay it out for the use as aforesaid. I 
have taken, all possible care to prevent my successor from the 
like oppositions, by having the enclosed draft and survey record- 
ed in the Surveyor's office, and in the ofHce of the Clerk of the 
county, and a copy thereof filed in the Secretary's office. My 
Parish is of a very large extent, and contains a great deal of 
land well settled, besides a large wilderness, in which are some 
few settlements ; there are three townships in it. Rye, Bedford 
and Mamaroneck, wherein there are some few settlements in 
the woods, so dispersed, that I have not yet been able to learn 
the number of inhabitants. There is a Presbyterian preacher 
flt Bedford, and there was another at Rye, when I came here, 
but now he has left us, and settled in one of the towns in Con- 
necticut. There cannot be any certain judgement made of the 
number of my hearers. Sometimes the church, which will hold 
about 300, is full, and I have seldom less than 100. At the 
sacrament of the Lord's supper, 1 had 25. We have no papists 
among us that I can find, a few Quakers, a pretty many inde- 
pendents or presbyterians, (they themselves dont know which) 
and a great number who are indifferent as to any religion and 
mind, only their worldly interest, so that I have a large field to 
work in, and much business before me, which I shall spare no 
pains to undergo, and I pray God, give me his assistance, to go 
through with it. I pray God, give his blessing to the pious and 
charitable endeavours of that venerable body, and 1 presume to 
subscribe myself, their most sincere and dutiful missionary. 

Robert Jenney. 

P. S. If the Venerable Society will please to send some 
])rayer books, with the new version of Psalms, and some Whole 
Duty of Man, it would be of great service to us here.""' 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. 584, 589. (Hawks'.) 


The mandamus referred to in the above letter, must have been 
granted soon after, as appears from the following minutes in 
the Vestry Book : " At a meeting of the Justices and Vestrymen 
held on the 16th of January, 1722, ye Rev. Robert Jenney, our 
Rector, delivered a writt of mandamus in his Majesty's name, 
from ye Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, held at the City of 
New- York, for the Province of New- York, commanding the Jus- 
tices and Vestrymen to raise and pay into the hands of the 
Churchwardens, all arrearages since the year 1719, to ye last of 
December, 1721."^ 

At a subsequent meeting, in compliance with the command 
of the mandamus, it was agreed to raise the sum of sixty 
pounds, (fee. 

" Which sum above mentioned, viz, ye £60 

With ye collecting thereof 3 3 6 

63 3 


Was quoted as : 





12 8 



8 3 


North Cast,le, 

• 2 


Manor of Scarsdale.i* 

3 10 


63 3 6 

The following petition from the Churchwardens ot Rye, was 
addressed to the Governor for the warrant mentioned in Mr. 
Jenney's letter : — . 


" To his Excellency, William Burnet, Esq., Captain General and Gover- 
noar in Chief in and over his Majesty's Provinces of New- York and 

■ Church Records, p. 24. 
k Church Records, p. 25. 


New-Jersey, and Territories depending thereon, in America, and Vice 
Admiral of the same, &c. 
The humble petition of the Churchwardens of the Parish of Rye, in ye Prov- 
ince of New- York : — 

May it please your Excellency : 
Whereas, there is a parcel of Land in this town, which for many years has been 
in the possession of the Minister of our parish, for the time being, but now by rea- 
son of our long want of a settled minister to possess it, is encroached upon and very 
much lessened by the Inhabitants that bound upon it j we therefore, the Church- 
wardens of the parish of Rye aforesaid, believing ourselves in duty bound to se- 
cure and defend the rights of our parish Church, do humbly pray your Excellen- 
cy to grant your \\{arrant to the Surveyor General to survey the said parcel, and 
adjust the true bounds thereof, to prevent any such encroachments for the future, 
and your Petitioners be in duty bound, 

1722. Shall ever pray, 


To the Secretary, 
Let a warrant be 

prepared accordingly. 

W. Burnet."* 

The subjoined documents are the warrant for the survey of the land in question, 
and the report of the surveyor general thereon : 

" William Burnet, Esq., Capt. Gen. and Governour in Chief of the Province 
of New- York, New Jersey and Territories thereon depending in America, and 
Vice Admiral of the sam.e : 

To Cadwallader Golden, Esq., 

Surveyor General of the Province of New- York. 

At the request of the Churchwardens of the parish of Rye, in this Province, I 
have thought fit hereby to authorize and commission you to survey, run out and 
ascertain the Lymitts and Boundrys of all such parcel or parcels of land as have 
been formerly possessed and enjoyed by the minister of the said church, notice 
being given to whom it may anyways conceme, of the time of your proceeding 
on said survey, and all Officers within this Province, both magesteriall or min- 
isterial!, are hereby commanded to give you all suitable countenance and assist- 
ance in the execution hereof, and what you shall doe herein, you are duly to 

Given under my hand at Fort George, this 5lh day of July, 1723, and in the 8th 
year of his Majesty's reign. 

Pursuant to a warrant from his Excellency, bearing date the fifth day of July, 

I have, by Mr. William Forster, one of my Deputys, run out and ascertained 
the limits and boundaries of such parcels of land as have been formerly possessed 

■ Documentary Hist, of New- York, vol. iii. p. 950. 


and enjoyed by the minister of the parish of Rye, in the county of "Westchester, 
as the same were shown to my said Deputy by the Churchwardens of the said 
parish, viz. : one parcel situate in the Town field, beginning at a white oak bush, 
near the fence of Ebenezer Kniffen, and runs thence south seventy-four degrees, 
thirty minutes, east twenty-three chains seventy-eight inches, to aheap of stones, 
thence south twenty-three degrees twenty minutes, west three chains seventy links 
to a walnut stump, thence north seventy-{wo degrees, twenty minutes, west twen- 
ty-four chains twenty linfcs, to a stone set in the ground, and thence north-east 
and by north very near distant two chains and seventy links, to the place where 
it began, and contains seven acres and about half an acre; 

Another parcel called the Home lot, in which the Town or Parsonage house 
stands, beginning at a heap of stones near the said house, and runs thence north 
nine degrees, forty-iive minutes, east three chains, thence north twelve degrees, 
west four chains, fifty links, to stones near Peter Brown's house, thence south 
eighty-seven degrees, west four chains, to a maple by blind brook, thence along 
the said brook, south eighty degrees, east five chains, fifty links, and south seveni- 
teen degrees, west one chain, fifty-fonr links, and thence from the brook, south 
eighty-six degrees, east four chains, twenty links, to the stones where we began, 
containing two acres, three roods and thirty-six poles. 

Given under my hand, the 14th day of September, in the ninth year of his 
Majestie's Reign, Anno Dom., 1722. 



Rye, July \st, 1723. 

Dear Sir 

" Last December 15th, I had the honour to answer yours of 
August 30th, sent to me by the order of the Venerable Society, 
wherein I gave an account of the state of my parish, as exactly 
as I could, which I hope came to hand ; 1 have no more to add 
but that my congregation seems to increase, being generally 
above 300, as near as I can guess ; my communicants are but 
few, but I am in hopes in a short time to have more. We have a 
new settlement amongst us in the woods, which began about the 
time of my predecessor's death, 1719 ; the inhabitants are very 
loose in their principals of religion, inclining rather to the Qua- 
kers than any other sect.. I have been amongst them with good 
success, having baptized a whole family, parents and children ■ 
I have heard that more of them intend to make a confession of 
their faith, in order to Baptism. Books are our greatest wants,. 



for stupid ignorance in point of religion, is almost general among 
us, and as the Venerable Society have usually extended their 
charity this way, so I hope they will at this time to us, by send- 
ing prayer books with the version of psalms by Tate and Brady, 
bound up with them, and instead of the usual tracts, I humbly 
conceive the Whole Duty of Man would be most useful. There is 
a small present made to our Chuch, by Mr. Isaac Denham,^' of 
this place, of a piece of land containing about 50 square rods, ly- 
ing before the front of the parsonage house, which though a 
small spot is of great use to the house, and the donor shows him- 
self on all occasions a hearty promoter of the Church's interest; 
he is a constant attendant at tlie ordinances and a communi- 
cant; he hath given me a deed of gift for the land and posses- 
sion, according to the forms of law, for my use and my succes- 
sors, the ministers of Rye. I conclude with my hearty prayers 
for that pious and charitable body, desiring theirs, for us, their 
missionaries, that we may be able to discharge the great trust 
they have been pleased to commit to us. 1 beg you will please 
to assure them that I am their faithful missionary. 

I am Sir, (fee, 

Robert Jenney."'' 

The same year the Rev. Mr. Jenney, minister at Rye, in the 
Province of New- York, informed the Secretary that besides Rye, 
he serves several other townships and distinct liberties, all of 
which, excepting Rye, being too great distance from the church, 
constantly to attend it, he visits them in their turns; that since 
his admission in 1722, he has baptized 10 adults, and 50 chil- 
dren, that the number of his communicants is 26, two of which 
have been admitted the first time by him. 

At a meeting of the Vestry, held on the 13th of July, 1724, 

" Mr. Isaac Denham was the son of Thomas Denham, Congregational minister 
of Rye, in 1677. 
■'' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulhara, vol. i. 607, COS. (Hawks'.,) 


the following order was issued ; " whereas several of ye Parish 
have talked of building pews in ye Church, ye vestry have 
thought fitt to order that.there be allowed an ile, of five foot from 
ye west door to ye communion table, also, an ile of two feet 
from ye kneeling couch, round ye Rails of ye Communiontable, 
also, an ile of six foot from ye south door to ye desk, also that 
there be a partition ile between each sett of pews on ye south 
side of ye church, of two foot, and that all pews be built to front 
ye desk, and for ye more certain compliance with this order, 
every one that builds a pew, shall apply themselves to ye Justi- 
ces, Churchwardens and Rector, or any three of them."^ 

In 1724, it was decided by a majority of votes, that a drum be 
provided for ye church this year:"'* 



At Rye, in the province of New-York, 
July 18th, 1724. 

CI. How long is it since you went over to the plantations as a missionary 1 

A. Please your Lordship, it is ten years since I was first received into the ser- 
vice of the Honourable Society, as appears by my Missionary letters, bearing 
date the I8th of June, Anno Domini, 1714. 

CI. Have you had any other Church before you came to that which you now 
possess ; and if you had, what church was it, and how long have you here removed 1 

A. I was chaplain in the Navy, from A. D. 1710, to 1714, from thence to 1717, 
I was in the service of the Honourable Society as assistant, first to the late Rev. 
Mr. Evans, of Philadelphia, afterWards to the Rev. Mr. Vesey, of New-York ; 
from 1717, to 1-722, I was chaplain to the fort and forces in New-York, there I was 
appointed the Honourable Society's missionary at Rye, where I now remain. 

d. Have you been licensed by the Bishop of London, to officiate as a mission- 
ary, in the government where you now are 1 

A. I have two licenses from the Right Rev. Father in God, John, late Lord 
Bishop of London, both bearing date the 7th of July, 1714, the one to be assistant 

- Church Records, p. 28. 
■<> Church Records, p. 39. 


to the late Rev. Mr. Evans of Philadelphia, the other to be schoolmaster of the 
same place, and for my removal to this province, I have the Honourable Society's, 
and the late Bishop of London's order, by their letters, both bearing date March 
5th, 1714. 
a. How long have you been inducted into your living ? 

A. I was inducted into my living by the Rev. Mr. Thomas Poyer, Rector of 
Jamaica, on Long Island, in this Province, on the 13th of June, A. D., 1723, by 
virtue of his Excellency our Governour's mandate, bearing date the 7th of June, 
Gl. Are you ordinarily resident in the parish to which you have been inducted % 
A. I am constantly resident in the town of Rye. 
Q,. Of what extent is your parish, and how many families in it % 
A. My parish contains three townships, a manor and two distinct purchases, in 
length about thirty miles, but at most eight in breadth, containing as near as I 
can guess, about two hundred families or rather more. 

Gl. Are there any In&dels, bond or free, within your parish, and what means are 
used for their conversion 1 

A, There are a few Negroes aad Indian slaves, but no free infidels in my par- 
ish ; the catechist, a schoolmaster from the Honourable Society, has often pro- 
posed to teach, them the catechism, but we cannot prevail upon their masters to 
spare them from their labour for that good work. 

Q. How often is divine service performed in your church, and what portion of 
the parishioners attend it 1 

A. The inhabitants of the parish are so scattered, and so few are well affected 
to our excellent liturgy, especially those who live near the church, that were it 
not for preaching, I should have no congregation, so that I am forced to be con- 
tent with the performance of the service, every sanday twice, when I also preach 
in the summer season, and once during the winter ; the number of my auditors is 
very uncertain, sometimes not thirty, sometimes three hundred, as the weather 
ser-ves for travelling. 

Q.. How often is the sacrament of the Lord's supper administered ; and what 
proportion of the parishioners attend it 1 

A. I administer the sacrament of the Lord's supper four times per annum, viz. : 
on Christmas, Easter, Whitsunday, and the sunday after the Feast of St. Michael ; 
the number of my communicants have never yet exceeded twenty-six. 
Gl. At what time do you catechise the youth of your parish 1 
A. Neither can the Schoolmaster persuade the people to senil their children to 
him to be taught the catechism, nor can I persuade them to send them to the church 
to be catechized, for which reason I often make some part of the catechism the 
subject of my sermons, and often exhort the people but in vain, to send their chil- 
dren to be catechised. 

a. Are all things duly disposed and provided in the Church, for the decent and 
orderly performance of di'ine service 1 

A. The only Church in the parish, is in the town of Rye, built of stone, well 
plaistered and sealed, fifty feet in length and thirty-five in breadth, with a pulpit 
and reading desk, but no pews ; the communion table is railed in. We have a 


Bible aad Prayer book, both to be for divine service and a silver cup, holding 
about a quart, and a paten ; but linen for the holy sacrament of the Lord's Supper 
and our Church are much out of repair. 

Q.. Of what value is your living in sterling money, and how does it arise 1 

A. The Honourable Society is pleased to allow me £50 sterling, and by act of 
assembly here, there is raised upon the whole parish, by a vote proportioned to 
the several estates of the parishioners, ^650, this currency (i. e.) allowing sixty-five 
per cent, difference, which is the common exchange, about jESO and a half, sterling, 
so that my whole salary is about jfiSO 6 8 sterling, per annum. I have no perqui- 
sites nor accidental advantages, excepting that very seldom, I have six shillings 
this money, which is scarce three and sixpence sterling, for a marriage. 

Gl. Have you a house and glebe ; Is your glebe in lease or let by the year, or 
is it occupied by yourself ? 

A. I have a small framed house with two acres, three roods and thirty-six poles 
ol land, as it was surveyed at my first comeing, with about a quarter of an acre 
given for the use of the minister, by Mr. Isaac Denham, deceased. I have also a 
lot of near eight acres but tis so encompassed with other mens farms, that I can 
make no use of it, so that I am forced to hire pasture for my horses. 

Q,. Is due care taken to preserve your house in good repair, and at whose ex- 
pense is it done % 

A. There is no care taken to preserve the house in good repair, for altho' we 
have an act of assembly yet in force empowering the trustees of the Town to re- 
pair the Church and other public buildings, yet the town does not choose such 
officers, and if they would we cannot hope that where the dissenters so much pre- 
vail, any persons would be chosen who would repair either the church or the 
house, so that if I will live in the house I must keep it in repair myself. 

Q.. Have you more cures than one, if you have, what are they, and in what 
manner served 1 

A. My parish is so large that I am obliged to travel,' notwithstanding that our 
friends are so few, that were they altogether they would noY make a large congre- 
gation. I officiate at Bedford and North-castle, eight times per annum, the form- 
er is about eighteen miles distant from here, the latter about twelve ; also, eight 
times per annum at Mamaroneck, for that place and Scarsdale and Foxes mead- 
ows, about three miles off; and four times at the White Plains, about four miles, 
the remaining Sundays here at Rye. 

Q,. Have you in your Parish any public school for the instruction of youth, if 
you have, is it endowed, and who is the master f 

A. We have a schoolmaster here from the Honourable Society, Mr. Joseph 
Cleator, allowed .£15 sterling per annum, but God has visited him with blind- 
ness, so that he can teach nothing but the catechism, and the people will not put 
it in his power to do that, notwithstanding that I have frequently at his request, 
given public notice thereof in the Church, and persuaded them to it in my sermons. 

a. Have you a parochial Library, if you have, are the books preserved and 
kept in good condition ; have you any particular rules and orders for the pre- 
serving of them ; are these rules and orders duly observed 1 


A. I found here a library of £10 sterling value, given by the Honourable Society 
to my predecessor for the use. of the Parish, without rules for their preservation. 
The fifteen volumes of Polisynopsis Critieorum, are very much damaged. 
I am, may it please your Lordship, &c.' 

In his report to the Secretary for 1724, Mr. Jenney says : " that 
he has baptized two adnlt persons and nine children, and has 
had two added to the number of his conimunicants."b 

The whole number of appropriated precincts, belonging to the 
Parish of Rye, in 1725, were as follows : — Bedford, Scarsdale, 
Mamaroneck, and North Castle, to which were subsequently 
added. White Plains and Harrison. 

The following are specimens of the original taxation rolls of 
this benefice, in 1725 :— Rye, £34 4; Bedford, £16 2; Mamaro- 
neck £18; Scarsdale, £5 3; and North Castle, £2 9— Total 
£75 18. 

From the following, it seems, that Mr. Jenney removed this 
year to Hempstead, upon Long Island : " At a meeting of the ves- 
try, held May 19th, 1726— the Rev. Mr. Jenney produced a letter 
from the Society, in which they gave him leave to move to 
Hempstead ; upon which the vestry agreed to write to the Soci- 
ety with the first opportunity, to pray them to' appoint a mis- 
sionary for this parish, and then chose Justice Purdy and Mr- 
Brown, the churchwardens. Justice Knight, Mr. Joseph Sher- 
wood, Mr. Daniel Purdy. Capt. Fowler, and Mr. Willett, as a 
committee to write to the Society on that head — adjourned till 
ye 25th of this month, to meet at Thomas Fowler's." <= 

Mr. Jenney continued at Hempstead until 1742, when he re- 
si-gned his charge, removed to Philadelphia, and was elected 
rector of Christ Church, in that city, where he died at the age 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 610-11. (Hawks'.^ 

' Rye "Vestry Book. 

« Church Records, p. 32. 


of 75, January 5th, 1762, having lost his wife in the former 
place, December 25th, 1738, aged 64.'^ " The Rev. Robert Jen- 
ney, LL. D., (says Dr. Dorr,) died in January of 1762, at the 
advanced age of seventy-five years. He Had been fifty-two 
years in the ministry, and more4han nineteen years rector of 
Christ Church ; having been elected to that office in October, 
1742." The Rev. Dr. William Smith, Provost of the College of 
Philadelphia, preached a sermon from Luke xvi. 21, at his fu- 
neral, in Christ Church, January 10th, 1762> In that discourse, 
it is said of him, that he was " a man venerable in years, and 
a striking pattern of Christian resignation under a long and se- 
vere ilness. Those who knew him best in that situation, knew 
that his chief concern was not for himself, but for the distress- 
.ed and perplexed state of his congregation. He was a man of 
strict honesty, one that hated dissimulation and a lie ; exem- 
plary in his life and morals, and a most zealous member of our 
Episcopal Church."" His remains repose in the aisle of Christ 
Church, immediately in front of the chancel. On his tomb- 
stone is the following, as near as can be deciphered : 


* >!■ ¥ Col. S. S. Trinitat, Dublin studiut alummis 

obiit die V Mensis Januar, Anno Salut, MDCCLXII. 

Mt. LXXV. Age Lector. 

Parce Religionis, honestse veritatis, benevolentissime Exemplum rulis 

Hunc ChristianEe Pidei vindicem, ' Pribitatis Cultorem Benevolentia studia, 

Respice, sequere, initare, Juxla Hoc etiam 

msemor, sepulta jacet 

Joanna Elizabetha precedicti Robert! Jenney, conf-ax 

duse six santim modo dies post mariti sepuhuram 

obiit, anno aetatis suse LXIV.*' 

The following notices appeared in the Pennsylvania Gazette, 
for January 14th, 1762 : " Oh Tuesday, the 5th inst., died, in 

» Thompson's Hist, of L. I., Vol. ii. p. 31. 
' Smith's Works, Vol. i. p. 22. 
'- Dorr's Hist, of Christ Church, Phil., pp. 129, 130. 


the seventy-fifth year of his age, the Rev. Dr. Robert Jenney, 
Rector of Christ Church in this city, 'a man of strict hones- 
ty ; one that hated dissimulation ; exemplary in his life and 
morals, and a most zealous member of the church.' On Sun- 
day afternoon, he was interred in said Church, when a suita- 
ble sermon was preached by the Rev. Dr. Smith, to a very 
crowded audience." 

"Monday last, died, Mrs. Jenney, having survived her hus- 
band only six days." 

The vacancy created by the removal of Mr. Jenney, the ves- 
try proceeded immediately to fill, as appears from the following 
letter to the Venerable Society. 


Rev. Sir, 

"We, the churchwardens and vestry of the parish of Rye, 
humbly present our thanks to the Hon. Society for their pious 
and charitable assistance thus long continued to our parish ; 
and whereas the Hon. Society have thought fitt to remove from 
us to Hempstead, our minister, the Rev. Mr. Jenney, whose re- 
moval lays us under the necessity to obtain another as soon as 
possible, to be actually resident among us : so we, in pursuance 
of ye Act of Assembly, impowering us thereto, have already 
proceeded to elect and call the Rev. Mr. James Wetmore, who 
has declared his acceptance of our call, upon condition the 
Hon. Society will give leave for his removal. Until their 
pleasure be known, he has promised to supply this parish once 
in three weeks, according to their directions to Mr. Jenney. 

We therefore humbly request the Hon. Society would consent 
to his removal, and that he may as speedily as may be, appoint- 
ed to reside constantly among us. 

We conclude with our hearty prayers that the blessing of God 


Almighty may attend the pious and charitable designs and en- 
deavours of that Yenerable Body. We are, Rev. Sir, 
Yours, and the Hon. Society's 

most datyfull and humble servants, 
[Signed by order.] Jno. Oarhartt, Clerk."" 

The call to the Rev. James Wetmore was as follows : — 

"Whereas, by the removal of our late incumbent, the Rev. 
Mr. Robert Jonney, (to the parish of Hempstead,) this parish is 
become vacant : 

We therefore, the Churchwardens and Testrymen of the par- 
ish of ^ye, whose names and seals are hereunto affixed, pursu- 
ant to the tenor and interest of an Act of General Assembly of 
this Province, entitled an Act for ' settling a ministry and raising 
a maintenance for them, in the City of New- York, County of 
Richmond, Westchester, and dueens County,' do call the Rev. 
Mr. James Wetmore, to officiate and have the care of souls 
within this parish of Rye, aforesaid. And the said Mr. James 
Wetmore, having told them he was ready to execute the function 
he was called unto, when he should be inducted into the same : 

Whereupon, it is ordered, that this Board do forthwith present 
the said Mr. James Wetmore, and pray his Excellency for his 
induction into the Church of the said parish, with all and sin- 
gular, the rights, privileges and appurtenances to the same be- 
longing, or in any ways appertaming. 

Given under our hands and serfls, this seventh day of June, 

Anno Dom. 1726. 

Samuel Purdy, [®] ^ ^ 

rt T, ICJ1 ^ Churchwardens. 

Benjamin Brown. [bj ) 

John Brundige, [SJ 

Joseph Sherwood, [SJ 

Daniel Purdy, [S] \ Vestrymen.^ 

Jonathan Haight, [S] 

William Willett." [S] _ 

» Rye vestry book. 


In the mean time, the Society had appointed the Rev. Thom- 
as Colgan,!"- as missionary to Rye. Upon which the Vestry ad- 
dressed the following letter to the Secretary : — 

Rev. Sir, 
" We, the Churchwardens and Vestry of ye parish of Rye, 
return our hunible thanks to ye Honourable Society for their pi- 
ous and charitable care of this parish, in providing so speedily 
to fill this vacancy by appointing ye Rev. Mr. Colgan for us; 
we conclude they have before this time, been acquainted by our 
letters, how far we had proceeded to obtain a minister, fearing 
ye ill consequences of being left destitute, and we hope ye Hon- 
ourable Society will put a favourable construction upon our pro- 
ceedings. Tho' we have given our call to ye Rev. Mr. Wet- 
more, and be received induction immediately upon it, yet he al- 
ways declared that he should submit to ye resolutions of ye 
Honourable Society, and not in any degree interfere with their 
determinations, and tho' we find ye inclinations of ye people 
very much to have Mr. Wetmore appointed for us, on which ac- 
count \\\e can't but desire that ye Honourable Society would be 
pleased to favour it, yet we shall always pay ye greatest deference 
to their pleasure, and if tliey finally determine that Mr. Colgan 
shall be for us, against whom ive have no exceptions, as being 
a stranger to us, we shall give him ye best welcome we are ca- 
pable of; but inasmuch as ye Rev. Mr. Colgan is willing, by ex- 
change with Mr. Wetmore, to continue at New- York, and that 
Vestry has signified their approbation, we humbly joyn with 
them in requesting of ye Honourable Society that they would 
confirm that agreement, and give liberty for Mr. "Wetmore to 
come to this parish, who, by being born in ye country, and ac- 
quainted with ye dispositions and customs of ye people here, 

- " The Vestry of Tiinily Church, N. Y., desired the favour of the Rev. Mr. 
Vesey, that when the Rev. Mr. Colgan comes to town, from his parish at Rye, 
he may have the liberty of reading prayers, and preaching in the afternoon ; 
which request Mr. Vesey readily granted and consented to."— Eerrian's Hist, of 
Trinity Church, N. Y., p. 47. 


will be acceptable to us, and we hope do much service for reli- 
gion, but all this with submission to that Venerable Body, whose 
pleasure we shall most cheerfully submitt to, and pray ye con- 
tinuance of their favours and charity to us, and that God would 
prosper their pious designs. 

We are. Rev. Sir, the Honourable Society's 

and your most humble and obedient servants, , 
[Signed per order.] Jno. Carhartt, Clerk."^ 

In accordance with this request, the Society were pleased to 
withdraw their appointment of Mr. Colgan, and confirm the 
call of the 

He was the third son of Ezrahiah Wetmore and Rachel Stow,'' 
and grandson of Thomas Wetmore, (a native of Wales) one of 
the first settlers of Middletown, Connecticutji^ where he was born 
on the 25th of December, 1695.'' He was educated at the 
collegiate school in Seabrook, which was afterwards removed 
to New Haven, and obtained the title of Yale College. The 
degree of Bachelor of Arts was conferred on him in September, 
1714, and of Master of Arts, in September, 1717. About the 
month of May, in 1718, he was invited by the people of North 
Haven, to settle with them as their minister ; and in November 
following, he was ordained the first Congregational pastor in 
that place. Here, Mr. Wetmore was generally esteemed and 
beloved by his people, as might reasonably be expected from the 
suavity of bis temper, and the regularity of his conduct. But 
after he had laboured with them nearly four years, he altered 

" Rye vestry book. 

'' Ezrahiah Wetmore, was born March 8th, 1656-7. — Rec. of Ma:rriages and 
Deaths in Clerk's office, Middletown. 

" Statistical account of the County of Middlesex, by David D. Field. 

* Rec of Marriages and Deaths in Clerk's office. The Wetmore's were origi- 
nally seated at Apley, in Shropshire, near the borders of Wales. John Whit- 
more was Lord of Whytemore, in Shropshire, A. D., 1350. In 1635, a Lawrence 
Whitmore, husbandman, aged 63, and his wife Elizabeth, aged 57, were passen- 
gers in the ship Hopewell, to Boston. — Mass. Hist. Coll. 


his religious sentiments, and in September, 1721, declared for 
Episcopacy, a 

In consequence of this change of opinion,'' he immediately 
took a dismission from his then pastoral relation, = and in 1723 
went to England, where he was ordained both deacon and 
priest, by Dr. Gibson, Bishop of London. Having heen appoint- 
ed by the Yenerable Propagation Society, their catechist at 
New- York, in the place of Mr. Neau, and assistant to the Rev. 
Mr. Vesey ; he embarked for America in July, and arrived in 
New- York, September the 24th, 1723. 

• See Allen's American Biog. Die. See Fowler's MSS., Vol. ii., p. 212. The 
Family arms are : — ar., on a chief az. three martleUs or : — Crest, a falcon ppr. 
Motto— Virtus, Libertas, et Patria. Of this family, is the present Prosper M. 
Wetmore, of the city of New- York, son of Robert Wm., and grandson of the 
Rev. Ezrahiah, of Trumbull, Connecticut. 

"• Mr. Wetmore, the Rector, and several of the tutors of Yale College, besides 
many of the neighboring ministers, having, after careful enquiry and mature 
deliberation being led to suspect, not only the regularity, but even the lawfulness 
and validity of congregational ordination, conformed to the Church of England. 
The Rev. A. B. Chapin, D. D., gives the following account of this extraordinary 
movement in 1722 : — 

" But though neither civil nor ecclesiastical power could plant the Church in a 
Puritan soil, God had determined its existence, free from all the entanglements of 
State — to be the defender of the faith, and the conservator of the peace of the 
country. In the town of Guildford, was a pious layman, still clinging to the 
Church of his affections, and to his Prayer Book. That Book became known to 
a promising youth among his neighbors, and was thenceforth his inseparable 
companion through life. — He goes to College — graduates with the honors of the 
University — enters the Congregational ministry, and is settled over one of the 
Congregational Societies in New Haven. That Prayer Book went with him, 
and became the pattern of public devotions that attracted the attention and com- 
manded the admiration of all who witnessed his labors. Slowly and insensibly 
that book was doing an effectual work, and in 1731, Johnson, the minister of the 
Congregational Church, on the west side of New Haven— now West Haven— 

" Mr. Thomas, Missionary at Hempstead, L. I., writing to the Secretary on 
the 1st of April, 1723, says : — " Mr. Wetmore seems very well qualified for their 
necessities, having of late by their differencies in New England, been much ex- 
ercised in the controversies between us and the Dissenters, a most necessary 
qualification in a gentleman among them, he is best acquainted with their weak 
sides and their subterfuges, &c.— New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. 
i.p.601. (Hawks'.) 


In 1726, a communication was received by the Vestry of 
Trinity Church, New- York, from the Rev. Mr. Wetmore, in 
which he acquainted the Board that he had lately been called 
by the Churchwardens and Yestry of the Parish of Rye, to be 
their Minister, in the room of the Rev. Mr. Jenney, whom the 
Society had appointed for the Parish of Rye, by virtue of let- 

and with him Cutler, President of the College — Brown, a Tutor in the same — 
and Wetmore, the Congregational minister of North Haven, publicly declared 
their belief in the divine origin and perpetual obligation of Episcopacy. These 
were all able, prominent men — the pride of the people, and were not to be given 
up without an effort. A disputation was held before the Grovernor — the students 
became interested — the flame spread — controversy increased, and thirty graduates 
of Yale entered the ministry of the Church in that generation — many of them 
having been previously in the ministry of the Congregationalists — all more or 
less directly through the influence of Dr. Johnson. 

Johnson, after receiving orders in England in 1722, became a Missionary of 
the Society for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts, and was stationed at 
Stratford and the adjacent towns. Cutler was sent to Boston, Wetmore to Rye, in 
New- York, and Brownxlied in England. The labors of Johnson were not confined 
to Stratford, but were extended to West Haven, Fairfield, and Newtown, where he 
established other Parishes within a few years. The elder Seabury, who was a stu- 
dent at Yale, left at the time of the Episcopal discussion, and went to Cambridge, 
where he was graduated in 1724. After having been a Congregational minister at 
Groton, now Poquetanock, for several years, he declared for Episcopacy in 1728, 
and becoming a Missionary of the Society already named, was stationed in New 
London. In the same year, 1732, Johnson had the pleasure of seeing his old 
friend and companion, John Beach, the Congregational minister of Newtown, 
who had graduated at the ever-memorable discussion of 1722, declare for the 
Church. He also became a Missionary of the same Society, and was stationed 
at Newtown and Reading. Two years later, 1734, Jonathan Arnold, Johnson's 
successor in the Congregational Parish at West Haven, came into the Church, 
and having received orders, was stationed by the same Society as a Missionary 
at West Haven and vicinity. Richard Miner graduated at Yale, 1726 — for 
many years Johnson's neighbor, as Congregational minister at Ripton, declared 
tor Episcopacy in 1742, but died in England, whither he had gone for Orders. 
Ebenezer Punderson, a native of New Haven, who was graduated at Yale in 
1726, and succeeded the elder Seabury as the Congregational minister of Groton, 
also followed his example in declaring for Episcopacy, which he did about 1732, 
and became a Missionary of the same Society, at Groton and Hebron, and subse 
quently at West Haven and vicinity. He was instrumental in founding Trinity 
Parish, New Haven, more than twenty years after the beginning of the Parish 
at West Haven, and organized ten other Parishes in this Diocese. Solomon 


ters of induction from his Excellency, Governor Burnet, and 
also, that if the Society should be pleased to approve thereof 
he intended to accept of the said parish, and remove thither, 
and he thanked the Vestry for their subscriptions and favours 
to him, and assured them that his intentions for removing did 
not proceed from any dislike, but purely because he conceived 

Palmer, a native of Branford, graduated at Yale in 1729— after having been the 
Congregational minister of Cornwall for many years, declared for Episoepacy 
in 1754, was enrolled among the Missionaries of the same Venerable Society, 
and was also stationed in Connecticut. Henry Caner, of New Haven, gradua- 
ted at Yale in 1724: and his brother Richard, graduated at the same place in 
1734, though bom of Congregational parents, entered the ministry of the Church, 
and became Missionaries of the same Society, one in Massachusetts and the 
other in Connecticut.— Isaac Browne, graduated at Yale, in 1729, the brother of 
Daniel Browne who died in England in 1723, came into the Church at West Ha- 
ven with his parents, along with Johnson, in 1723, and was for many years a 
Missionary of the same Society in New- York and New Jersey. The same may 
be said of Ebenezer Thompson, graduated in 1733, for many years a Missionary 
in Massachusetts. Henry Barclay, graduated at Yale in- 1734, first a Missiona- 
ry of the Propagation Society to the Indians, and then Rector of Trinity Church, 
New York, is also to be reckoned among the number of those whose services in 
the Church resulted from the influence of Johnson. So also, Ebenezer Dibble, 
graduated in 1734; Christopher Newton, graduated in 1740 ; Richard Mansfield 
and Joseph Lamson, graduated in 1741 ; Ichabod Camp, graduated in 1743 • 
Thomas Bradbury Chandler and Jeremiah Leaming, graduated in 1746— were 
all the sons of Congregational parents, and Missionaries of the Venerable So- 
ciety for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts. Within the same period, 
Daniel Dwight, graduated in 1721, came into the Church, and went to South 
Carolina— John Pierson, graduated in 1729, went to New Jersey— Ephraim Bost- 
wick, graduated the same year, and Jonathan Copp, graduated in 1745, went to 
Georgia— William Sturgeon, graduated in 1745, went to Pennsylvania-^ Walter 
Wilmot, graduated in 1735, and Hezekiah Watkius, graduated in 1737, went to 
New- York. Besides these, Barzillai Dean, graduated in 1737; Jonathan Cotton, 
graduated in 1745, and James Usher, graduated in 1753-all died abroad, having 
successively gone to England for orders for Heoron. It may be proper to men- 
tion here, as showing the great obstacles which the Church had to encounter at 
that early period, that of fifty-two candidates that had gone to England for orders 
from the Northern Colonies, previous to 1777, ten of them died abroad, or were 
lost at sea. All the persons mentioned, born and educated Congregationalists 
are known to have come into the Church, more or less directly through the influ- 
ence of Johns(5n, and all were Missionaries of the Society for Propagatin- the 
Gospel. To these must be added William, the son of Samuel Johnson-Sam- 


it would be for the better and more certain support of himself and 

The following mandate was issued by his Excellency, Wil- 
liam Burnet : — 


uoiELMTjs Burnet armiger Provinciae Novi Eboraci, nee non Novae CEesarias 
in America strategus et Imperator ejusdemque Vice Admiralis, &c. Universis 
et singulis Clericis et Ministris Ecclesi^ Anglica.ise quibuscumque in et per to- 
tam Provinciam Novi Eboraci ubilibet ConstitutisEedelibusEcclesiEe Parochialis 
de Rye infra Provinciam Novi Eboraci preedict pro hoc tempore salutem.' Cum 
dilectum in Cliristo Jacobum "Wetmore Clericum ad Rectoriam sive Ecclesiam Pa- 
rochialem Praedict Parochise de Rye in diet. Provincise Novi Eboraci in America 
jam vacantem priEsentatum Rectorem ejusdem Rectorioe sive Ecclesias parochialis 
in et de Eadem institutus, Vobis Conjunctim et divisim Committo et firmiter Injun- 
gengo Mando, duatenus eundem Jacobum Wetmore, Clericum, sive procuratorem 
suum legitimum ejus nomine et pro se in Realem actualem et Corporalem ^os- 

uel, the son of, Samuel Seabury, and John Ogilvie, the successor of Barclay, as 
Missionary to the Indians, all graduated in 1748 ; Jacsb Greaten, graduated in 
1754; Lucas Babcock, graduated in 1755, and Abraham Beach, graduated in 
1757, all Missionaries in New- York ; James Scoville and Samuel A. Peters, 
graduated the same year; Roger Viets, Bela Hubbard, and Thomas Davies, 
graduated the year following, 1758, Missionaries in C onnecticut ; also, Samuel 
Andrews, graduated in 1759 ; Abraham Jarvis and Ebenezer Kneeland, graduated 
in 1761 ; Gideon Bostwick, and Richard Clarke, graduated in 1762, who were 
among the Missionaries of the same Society in Connecticut. 

These are the principal of the Clergy of Connecticut for half a century after 
the conversion of Johnson — sustained, every one of ihem, in whole or in part, 
by the funds of an English Missionary Society." — Extract from a Sermon by the 
Rev. A. B. Chapin, DD., preached by request in Christ Church, Hartford, Janu- 
ary, 1851. , 

" The students of Yale were compelled to submit to a fine as often as they at- 
tended the worship of the Church of England." 

The Churchwardens and Vestrymen of Newport, R. I., in a letter to the Sec- 
retary, dated 26th of October, 1722, say :— " This example will be followed by 
many, if not the most considerable, men amongst them ; wherefore we have an 
instance in one Mr. Wetmore, a man of learning and piety, who is now become 
zealous for the service and interest of the Church, but whose circumstances 
won't at present, allow him to apply for Episcopal ordination." Conn. MSS. 
from Archives at Fulham, p. 79. (Hawks'.) 


sessionem ipsius RectoriEe sive Ecclesise parochialis de Rye prcedict glebarium, 
juriumque : et pertinentium suorum universorum. Conferatis Inducatis, Indu- 
cive facialis : et defendatis Inductum, Et quid in prsemissis feceritis me aut ali- 
um Judicem in hac parte eompetentem quemcumque debite (cum ad id congrue 
faeritis requisiti) certificetis sen sic certificet ille vestrum qui praesens hoc man- 
datum fuerit Executus. Datum sub sigillo prEerogativo dictae Provinciae Noyi 
Eboraci — die Junii anno salutis MDCCXXVI. 

By his Excellency's command, 

Jas. Robin, Dep. Secretary." 

At an adjourned meeting of the Vestry, held January 24th, 
1726-7, present. Rev. James Wetmore, &c., it was agreed to 
raise this year as follows : — 

For the Minister - - £50 

For the Poor - - 10 ' 

For the Clerk of the Vestry - 1 10 

For the Clerk of the Church 10 

For the Drummer , - 10 

For Expenses and incidental charges 3 10 
For Mrs. Budd, for her Negroe's work, 
seven days' at the parish house, at 

2s. 6d. per day 17 6 

Collecting money 

Quoted as follows : 
North Castle 


17 6 


11 6 



£35 10 







£71 9 

Upon the 25th of April, 1727, the Vestry addressed the fol- 
lowmg letter to the Secretary of the Venerable Society :_ 


Rev. Sir, 

The Churchwardens and Testrymen of ye parish of Rye 
have ordered me to return their humble thanks to you and 
the Honourable Society for ye favour of yours of September 
30th, in which you acquaint us that the Honourable Society 
have consented to ye exchange for which we had humbly ad- 
dressed, and accordingly have appointed ye Rev. Mr. Wetmore, 
to be our minister^ which is very much to ye satisfaction of ye 
whole parish, even those who are dissenters from our Church. 

And now we are once more peaceably settled, we hope by the 
blessing of God, to see religion revive among us, which by con. 
tentions and diyisions, is sunk to a very low ebb. As the Rev. 
Mr, Wetmore has been born in the country, and long known 
among us, who has had his conversation becoming his sacred 
character and profession, we doubt not but ye people of this Par- 
ish, will continue their affection to him, and hope to see this 
good fruit of it, viz : that they be brought to a proper sense of 
religion, and more general and constant attendance in ye public 
worship and sacraments, which, for a long time have been very 
much neglected among us. We earnestly pray for the blessing 
of Almighty God, upon that Venerable Society, whose extensiye 
charity, (under God,) finds food for so many souls, famishing in 
ignorance and error, and shall always look upon ourselves strict- 
ly bound to pay it, the greatest honour and most cheerful obedi- 
ence to all their commands and directions, and beg leave to sub- 
scribe with all dutiful respects. 

Rev. Sir, your and ye Honourable Society's most 
humble and obedient servants, 

[Signed by Order of the Vestry,] 

John Carhartt, Clerk."* 

In answer to a letter from the Secretary, dated December 30th, 
1726, Mr. Wetmore replies : — 

» Church Records of Rye, p. 38. 




Rye, May Uth, 1727. 

Rev. Sir, 
"I received "yours of December 30th, wherein you acquaint me 
that the Honourable Society have appointed the Rev. Mr. Col- 
gan, to New- York, and me to Rye, according to our request, for 
which I return my humble thanks ; and inasmuch as the people 
of Rye appear to me to be much gratified by this exchange, I 
shall endeavour to make the best use I can of the good affection 
they profess to me, to promote the interest of piety and religion 
among them, which seems to be sunk to a very low ebb. My 
labours have been divided the winter past, between Westches- 
ter and Rye, but so that when I preached for Mr. Colgan at Rye, 
he preached for me at Westchester, and our labours have not 
been without success. Besides those baptized by him in both .Par- 
ishes, I have baptized about 40 infants, and one adult person, 
and have had 7 adult persons apply to me for baptism, whom 
1 have, deferred for further preparations, two of which are ne- 
groes. I have admitted to the communion, three new communi- 
cants, all converts from Dissenters, and several others with whom 
I have taken particular pains, have promised to come to the com- 
munion when they shall have gained some further knowledge of 
the virtue and necessity of the institution. The town of Rye, 
tho' by much the greater part Dissenters, have upon my request, 
chosen trustees, who are impowered to raise a tax upon the town, 
to repair and finish the Church, which is now in a very poor 
condition, and 1 have promised to give them a bell if they will 
build a steeple to hang it in, which I believe they will .comply 
with. I shall be able to give more particular accounts of the state 
of the Parish, when I have been some longer time with them. 
Mr. Henry Caner, being, as he tells me, about to undertake a 
voyage to England, to offer himself to the service of the Honour- 
able Society, I beg leave to recommend him as a person of a good 
character among us, and qualified to serve the Church, sober, 
grave, and exemplary in his conversation, and of good' report, 


even among those that are without, of whom I speak with the 
greater assurance hoth as to his piety and loyalty to his Majesty 
hecause I have heen personally and intimately acquainted with 
him for more than three years. It is matter of joy to me, to see 
so many new churches going forward in this country, and the 
good position of so many people in all parts of it, notwithstand- 
ing the violence and bitterness of its numerous adversaries. I 
pray God to hless and reward the charity of that Venerable 
Body, which gives life and motion to the church in these parts, 
and beg leave to subscribe with all dutiful regard, 
Rev, Sir, Yours, and the 

Honourable Society's, most humble 
and obedient servant, 

James Wetmore."^ 

On the 16th of January, 1727, the vestry voted that a drum 
be bought out of ye money in Bank, for the use of the Parish, 
and chose Joseph Bloomer, Clerk of ye Church, driimmer for ye 
year insuing.'> In the fall of 1727, Mr. Wetmore reports "he hath 
baptized one adult, and 35 children, one of which is a negro, 
and has had three more communicants ; that he is preparing 5 or 
6 for baptism, 2 of which are negroes, and that his congrega- 
tion increases and have been much more constant and steady in 
attending the Churc^, the last summer, than formerly." 

In reply to certain enquiries from the Secretary, Mr. Wet- 
more gives the following account of his Parish : — 


Rye, February 2Qth, 1727-8. 

Rev. SiR; 

"Yours of June 16th, came not to hand, till the 14th of Novem- 
ber. I have since used my utmost iiiligence to prepare myself to 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. i. p. 676-7. (Hawks'.) 
' Church Records, p.- 40. 


answer the queries contained therein, which is something difficulty 
considering the large extent of rny Parish, in which is but one 
Church, viz : the Town of Rye, built by a license from Lord 
Cornbury, Governour of New York, in the year 1706, the mate- 
rials of which are rough stone, from the foundation to the roofr 
and the east end was first built with stone to the top, but the wea- 
ther beating through to the prejudice of the ceiling, it has been 
since pulled down and built with wood and shingled, and the 
ceiling repaired, which cost £30, which £30 was part of a year's 
salary, after Mr. Bridge's death, applied to that use by order of 
the General Assembly. The chief promoter of the Church, and its 
greatest benefactor, was Col. Caleb Heathcote, who gave the 
nails and all the iron work ; Mr. Muirson paid the masons, 
whose work amounted to about £40, whether he procured the 
money by donations in York, or otherways, I can't certainly find ; 
the remainder was paid by a tax upon the Town, but nothing 
of the inside was then done, but the ceiling. In the Rev. Mr, 
Bridge's time, a subscription was promoted for finishing the 
Church, but nothing more was done, than building the pulpit 
and altar, and laying part of the place afterwards. When Mr. 
Jenney was minister of the Parish, £8 was raised by the Parish 
to make shutters for the windows, and six pieces were built by 
particular men. Upon the first town meeting after I was ap- 
pointed to this parish, I prayed the towii to take into considera- 
tion the neglected and ruinous state of the Church, being gone 
very much to decay, and to think of some method that would be 
most acceptable to the people, to put it into a belter condition j 
upon which they chose trustees, to repair it according to an act 
of Assembly of the Province, empowering trustees so chosen to 
repair public buildings. These trustees made a tax of £100, 
and immediately provided for repairing and finishing the 
Church, and have put a new cover of cedar shingles upon it, 
the old one which was of oak, being worn out ; they have also 
finished the floor and all the pews, and would have proceeded 
to repair the doors and glass which are gone much to decay, and 
to paint the walls and clean the church, but are obliged to cease 
for the present, by reason of some apposition they meet with 


from some of the Presbyterian party, instigated by a very troub- 
lesome fellow, one John Walton, who set up for a Teacher among 
them, before my being appointed here, from whom I have met 
with a great deal of opposition. These Presbyterians have com- 
menced a law suit against the collector of the tax, and tho' we 
hope they will finally get no advantage, yet it caused tire work 
to cease; but I hope we shall find some method to revive it again 
and to build a steeple, to encourage which, I have promised to 
give them a bell when the steeple is finished. The Church is 49 
feet in length from west to east, and 34 feet in width ; there are 
two large aisles in the Church, one from the west door up to the 
altar, the other from the south door up to the reading pew, which 
stands before the pulpit ; the rest is now filled in with handsome 
pews, the altar is raised two steps and railed in, but a poor al- 
tar piece. We have a silk carpet for the communion table, and a 
pulpit cloth, given by Q,ueen Anne, of blessed memory, with a 
Chalice and Paten ; we have a folio Bible and Common Prayer 
Book, worn old, given by the Honourable Society, or by the 
Queen, as also the library as usual to every minister. 

There is a salary of £50 per annum, New- York money, 
which is equivalent to about £31 sterling, settled by an Act of 
Assembly upon an -orthodox minister, called by the Vestry, and 
inducted by the Governour. This Vestry consists of ten men 
and two Churchwardens, to be chosen annually, the second Fri- 
day in January, by the votes of the whole parish. The glebe 
is a small, old house, and three acres of land lying near the 
Church, one acre of which was given by Justice Denham, and 
about eight acres, a mile distant^ lying in such a form as to be 
of very little use, but at present rented for three bushels of wheat 
per annum, for seven years; The house was first built by the 
town for a Presbyterian minister, before there was a church in 
town, but never any particular settlement of it upon any ; when 
a minister of the Church came, and they had no Presbyterian 
minister, the house was put into his possession and enjoyed 
successively with the glebe, by the minister of the Church, but 
the Presbyterian party threatening to give trouble about it in 


Mr. Jenney's time, he procured a survey of it for the Church, 
and got it entered upon the public records of the Province ; he 
also repaired the house, which was almost fallen down, being 
neglected by Mr. Bridge, who thought it not worth repairing. 

When the Church was first built, the town was but small 
and the people poor. I find by an old list, that the number of 
people taxed for building the Church were about ninety-three, 
some of which were widows, and some young men without fam- 
ilies, and tho' they. were generally Presbyterians, by Col. Heath- 
cote's influence, and Mr. Muirson's industry and good behaviour 
and the Governour of the Province being zealous to encourage 
the Church, they all united in building the Church, and fre- 
quented the worship in it, as long as Mr. Muirson lived, and so 
they did in Mr. Bridge's time, but after his death they fell into 
division, and invited a Presbyterian minister among them, and ' 
tho' they have never had one ordained in the Presbyterian or In- 
dependent way, yet they have liept up their party, and whenever 
there has been a vacancy, the Independent ministers from the Col- 
ony of Connecticut have then especially been very busy to 
strengthen that party and increase their prejudices against the 
Church. This Walton I before mentioned, took an opportunity 
to get into the parish at a time when there' was a contest be- 
tween the Rev. Mr..Jenney and the people, concerning the salaryj 
during the vacancy after Mr. Bridge's death, which the Vestry 
raised, rather than stand a trial at law, and Mr. Jenney laid it 
out in repairing the house and glebe, but many that before came 
to the Church, and some who had been communicants in Mr. 
Bridge's time (yet always lovers of Independency) being now 
disaffected, readily fell in with this Walton, and being a bold, 
noisy fellow, of a volible tongue, drew the greatest part of the 
town after him, and he has taken all imaginable pains to give 
them ill impressions of the Church ; he spurred them forward 
to build one meeting house at the White Plains, about six 
miles from the Church, and has set them on to build another in 
the town, within about one hundred rods of the Church, to 
defray the expenses of which, they have obtained briefs from the 


General Assembly of Connecticut Colony, to beg in all the 
towns and villages of that Colony, who being great enemies of 
the Church, have contributed largely out of mere opposition to 
the Church. I have used m.y utmost diligence and prudenc^ 
since my coming among them, to dispose them to a reconcilia- 
tion, and to establish and strengthen the wavering, and my en- 
deavours have, in some degree, been successful. I have brought 
some over to the Church, several to the communion, and in- 
spired others with a greater love and zeal for the worship and 
constitution of the Church, tho' it must be confessed to their 
shame, there is still a very great inditference and slackness in 
attending the public worship of God, among those that profess 
themselves churchmen, as well as among the sectaries. 

As to the general condition, emplo]', and business of those 
who frequented the Church at first, their estates lay much in 
unimproved lands, and I can't learn that they raised much, if 
anything, for the market, but what they trafficked with was 
chiefly wood and cattle. As to their sentiments in matters of 
religion, I have already intimated they >vere by profession, Pres- 
byterians, and always loved the Independent principles, but the 
Act of Assembly providing for the support of a ministry, being 
so worded as to give the benefit only to ministers of the Church 
of England, tho' many of the Assembly perhaps might design 
other ways— -and the Governour's being zealous to encourage the 
Church, and Colonel Heathcote, being in the parish, a man of great 
influence over the people, and especially the better sort; and 
Mr. Muirson being acceptable to the people by his sober and 
grave conversation, and very industrious to remove the scruples 
they had conceived, and their prejudices against the Church, 
they generally fell in to encourage and promote the Churchj 
and frequented the worship of it, but those of them now liv- 
ing, who have left the Church, say they were always Presbyte- 
rians, but while they were in no condition to get a minister ac- 
cording to their own mind, they thought it was better to go to 
Church than to have no religion, (tho' we have some now that 
are hardly of that opinion.) Their manner of living was at 


first somewhat more compact than it js now, for as they increase, 
they move out into the woods, and settle, wherei they can get good 
farms. The Parish consists of three towns, Rye, and Mamaro- 
neck, about four or five miles south, and Bedford, about twenty 
miles north. The nearest English Church is Westchester, 
about fifteen miles north from Rye, and very bad travelling in 
the winter and spring, but in the summer, pretty good, but from 
Bedford to Westchester is thirty- five miles and always bad trav- 

The parish is very much improved since the first settling of 
the Church here, especially as to their numbers, and tho' there 
are many that live very meanly, and counting the value of un- 
improved lands (all which belonged to a few men, and now 
sold or divided among their children) we may look upon the 
former inhabitants as possessing better estates than most of their 
children now ; yet 'tis certain in general, that the manufacture 
of the country is very much increased, and there are more hun- 
dreds of bushels of wheat sent to market in a year now, than 
single bushels twenty years past. There are now in the whole 
parish, as I find by the several lists for the year past, three hun- 
dred and forty persons upon whom the tax is levied, heads of 
families, and young men in the township of Rye two hundred^ 
in Mamaroneck twenty, in the Manor of Scarsdale thirty, in 
Bedford sixty, and thirty in North Castle, a new settlement be- 
tween Rye and Bedford, about six miles from i3edford ; this 
place was chiefly settled by people of no religion at all, very ig- 
norant and barbarous, being descendants of the Long Island 
duakers, and having more knowledge of Quakerism than of 
any other religion, are more receptive of that, but there being 
a few people of the Church among them, Mr. Jenney first began 
to take pains with them, preached among them, and baptized 
several, tho' they are since all returned to duakerism or nothing'; 
and 'tis certain they have left the Church, partly by the instiga- 
tion of the duakers (who have been very busy among them 
while they were long neglected) from Mr. Jenney's being called 
to Hempstead, at my being fixed here, and partly upon disgust; 


being disappointed of some preferments they expected Mr. Jen- 
ney would procure for them, and being reproved for bringing a 
scandal upon religion by their loose and irregular living ; how- 
ever, there are a few sober people that live there, and to accom- 
modate them and Bedford, or at least some from Bedford that 
are willing to come to Church, I preach once in about five 
weeks at North Castle. There are three meeting houses in the 
parish, one at Bedford, built for, and used by the Presbyterians, 
one in the township of Rye, about seven miles from the Church, 
towards North Castle, built last year by the Quakers, and one 
at White Plains, in the township of Rye, about six miles from 
the Church, built last year by the followers of Walton, who are 
the old Independent party, and they are about building another 
near the Church. The haughty, insolent behaviour of Walton, 
drew upon him the displeasure of the dissenting teachers, on 
which account he removed from the parish a few days ago, but 
introduced a young man to be his successor, who holds forth 
one Sunday at White Plains, and another in the town of Rye, 
alternately, for which they give him £50 per annum, which 
they raise by subscriptions; they have besides given him 
money to purchase a house and land, but how much I can't 
tell. The Quakers have no constant holder forth among them, 
but keep silent meetings, unless when some travelling speaker 
chances to straggle among them, and then they follow it every 
day in the week, from one place to another, taking all imagina- 
ble pains to seduce the ignorant and unstable. At Bedford they 
have had a Presbyterian minister, they gave him a house and 
farm to work upon, and £40 per annum, but finding it not suf- 
ficient to support him with a numerous family, he has left them, 
and they are now settled with another young man, to whom they 
give the same allowance. As to the number of people dissent- 
ing from the Church, of all sorts throughout the parish, they 
are much the greater part at Mamaroneck. They are chiefly Qua- 
kers in the town of Rye ; the number of Church people and 
Independents are near equal, about sixty families each — about 
fifteen families, Quakers, and the rest are a sort of people that 


frequent no manner of public worship, and by all I can learn 
have no private worship, neither. There are some of this sort 
at North Castle, about ten families of the Church, and the rest 
(Quakers ; at Bedford, there are about eight or ten families of 
the Church, and the rest Presbyterians or Independents ; at the 
Manor of Scarsdale, about eight families of the Church, and 
the rest Dissenters of one denomination or another. There are 
no more Dissenting teachers in the Parish than I have mentioned, 
these officiate without any sort of ordination, and without qual- 
ifying themselves according to the act of toleration; in that peo- 
ple are suffered to do and say what they please about religion 
under a notion that the laws of England relating to religion, 
don't extend to the Plantations. As to schools for teaching 
children, there are several poor ones in the different parts of the 
parish ; while Mr. Cleator had his sight, they tell me he kept 
a constant and good school, but now, where a number of fami- 
lies live near together, they hire a man and woman at a cheap 
rate, subscribing every one what they will allow ; some masters 
get £20 per annum, and their diet, some £12, but there is no 
public provision at all for a school in this parish, except what 
the Honourable Society allow Mr. Cleator, nor is there any do- 
nations or benefactions to the minister or schoolmaster, besides 
what I have mentioned, nor is there any library besides the 
Honourable Society's. 

The number of negroes in the parish is about one hundred; 
since Mr. Cleator has been blind and unable to teach school he 
has taken pains with the negroes, so many as their masters 
would allow to come, but of late, they have left coming alto- 
gether; those that belong to Quaker masters, they will allow 
them no instruction; some Presbyterians will allow their ser- 
vants to be taught, but are unwilling they should be baptized, 
and those of the Church are not much better, so that there is but 
one negro in the parish, baptized. I had two of my own, which 
I baptized, buc I have lately sold them out of the parish, and I 
have another, which 1 have instructed and design to baptize very 


Since I received my Lord of London?s letters to the masters 
and mistresses, I have taken particular pains with them, and 
they give me encouragement that they will send them to be in- 
structed, if the masters can agree upon some regulations to pre- 
vent the common inconveniencies of their meeting together, and 
I hope I shall prevail upon many of them to send their servants 
upon Sunday afternoons, and if Mr. Cleator can do anything 
towards the instruction it will be a pleasure to the good old 
man and I shall assist him in it myself, and endeavour that 
many of them may be brought to- receive Christian baptism. 

This is the most true and exact account I can anyways give 
in answer to the queries contained in your letter. 

Rev. Sir, your and the Honourable Society's 

most obedient humble servant, 

James Wetmore."^ 

The Society's abstracts for 1728, say: "letters have been receiv- 
ed from the Rev. Mr. Wetmore, missionary at Rye, in New- 
York, that his congregation is considerably increased ; that since 
his last, he hath had nine new communicants, and hath bap- 
tized seventeen children, and five adults, one of which is a ne- 
gro slave; that he hath four negroes, under instruction, whom 
he expects to baptize in a month ; that there are many unbap- 
tized persons in that parish, and many careless livers who seem 
wholly thoughtless of a future state and quite indifferent about 
religion, however, he has had some success in his endeavours to 
reclaim them ; that at North Castle, a new settlement in the 
woods, there are more than forty families, most of which are 
unbaptized, and that he preaches there every fifth Sunday to 
accommodate that place and Bedford, about six miles further 
northward, that a great many of the people come to church, 
and he hath baptized four adults and sundry children there." 

From a letter of Mr. Wetmore, to the Secretary, dated Rye, 
Province of New- York, November 1st, 1728, we extract the fol- 

- New-York MSS. Irom Archives at Fnlham, vol. i. 68.% 694. (Hawks'.) 


Rev. Sir, 

" There are many whole families I have found that were never 
baptized, and there are many more in which some part are bap- 
tized, and some not, and to find out the exact number through 
the parish, is exceeding difficult, but I shall endeavour as fast as 
I can, to acquaint myself with the state of every family, and 
persuade those to their duty, who have hitherto neglected it. 

There are three large families in this Town, that I have taken 
particular pains with, to convince them of the necessity and 
importance of attending that Institution, in one of those families 
there are eleven children, some of them grown to years of un- 
derstanding ; the mother has desired me to baptize them ; the 
children grown up, frequent the Church. Thp father is a Q,ua- 
ker, and will not consent to their being baptized. The mother 
would have it done without his knowledge, and this is not the 
only instance of this nature I have been puzzled with."!^ 

In 1728, the Society appointed Mr. Flint Dwight, a native of. 
New England, educated at Harvard College, to be catechist 
and school master amongst the poor people at North Castle, in 
the Parish of Rye, in New- York. 

At a meeting of the Vestry, on the 3d of February, 1729, "it 
was moved whether the money voted to be raised for buying a 
pall, at the last meeting of the Vestry should be raised according 
as it was then voted, or not, and it was now carried in the affir- 
mative by a great majority, and with this explanation, that it is a 
convenient provision for the poor, for their decent interment."'' 

This year Mr. Wetmore again addressed the Secretary. 


Rye, July 31sif, 1729. 

Rev. Sir, 
"Since my last, dated November 5th, 1728, we have had noth- 
ing very remarkable in this Parish. The trial with the people of 

* New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. p. 11, 12. (Hawks'.) 

* Church Records, p. 46. 


the White Plains, who commenced an action against the officer 
for collecting the rate to repair the Church, was not issued till 
last month, so that nothing has been done towards repairing the 
Church, for about 12 months past, but that action being now de. 
termined in favour of the Church, I hope they will go on 
with the work and bring it to some greater perfection ; I have 
been labouring to soften and reconcile the Dissenting party, for 
which reason I have not urged raising more money upon the 
Parish, but I hope the present Trustees of the town, who are 4 
Churchmen to 2 Independents, will do something in the matter 
without my appearing active in it, and the Independents will 
have the less to object, because they are doing their utmost to 
build a meeting house, and can hardly think we should have 
less zeal to make the Church appear beautiful, when we have 
sufficient power in our own hands. The Dissenters have no 
teacher among them, but the common teachers come once in a 
while to preach among them, to keep the party alive, many of 
them come to Church and bring their children to be baptized, but 
I cannot depend upon their being so reconciled, but that they will 
leave the Church again if one Independent teacher comes to town, 
but I am in hopes while so many come to Church, and are pretty 
easy, the zealots of the party will never be able to make an m- 
terest strong enough to procure a teacher among them. My 
congregation is considerably increased at New Castle, a new 
settlement in the woods, where I go to officiate every fifth Sun- 
day, the Dissenters therrf are all Cluakers, and I have thought 
if we had a good school master there, it might be of great ser- 
vice to religion, in some sort to supply the place of a resident 
minister in catechising and instrucjing the youth, and keeping 
the people from running wild in their principles and practice, as 
they are in great danger of doing, by being among so many Qua- 
kers, seducers, and more of no religion. 

Yours, (kc, (fee, 

James Wetmore."=- 

• New-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. p. 23. (Hawks'.) 


In 1729, Mr. Wetmore writes to the Secretary, that he meets 
with good success in his mission ; that his hearers increase and 
that several of the Independents have quitted that persuasion 
and very regularly attend divine service at his Church. In 
his report for 1730, he acquaints the Society with the good suc- 
cess he meets with in his mission, and the hopes he entertains 
of checking the growth of (Quakerism. 


^ %e, New- York, December 2\st, 1730. 
Rev. Sir, 

" There has nothing very remarkable happened in this Parish 
since my last, our Church has been very full all this summer 
past, and the Independents having been destitute of any teacher 
of their sort, are grown something more complying than former- 
ly, and sundry of them attend the church constantly, with 
good satisfaction. 

Our greatest trouble is now with the Quakers, who are 
very industrious to propagate their sect ; where any of them set- 
tle, they spare no pains to infect their neighbourhood and where 
they meet with any encouragement, they follow them up with 
their meetings day after day, and new holders forth, who have 
all a great fame spread 'before them, to invite many curiosities, 
besides they are much encouraged by the countenance they 
meet with, our people of credit will often go to their meetings, 
especially what they call their great and general meetings, 
which I -think are of pernicious consequence to religion, and 
ought to be suppressed ; these meetings debauch young people 
and many as to their principles. 1 have used my utmost dili- 
gence to secure my parish from the poisonous infection of those 
principles, but yet they have gained ground among us, by (Qua- 
kers coming from Long Island to settle here, and some few have 
been seduced by them, among whom a woman of very good fam- 
ily, to whom I wrote the enclosed letter upon that occasion, 
to which having received two answers from the Quakers, I 


thought it proper to put this letter in print, especially having Mr. 
Johnson's advice, whose judgment I very much esteem, and 
I have writ a reply to the two Q,uaker letters, which I design 
to publish as soon as they have printed theirs; if those, who 
urge me to it will help to bear the change which some of them 
have promised, and 'tis thought the method I have taken, was 
very seasonable and necessary and will be like to have some 
good effbct in putting a stop to the growth of Quakerism, which 
for many years has gained ground in this Province, and having 
had little or no public opposition, has almost overrun us. 

I have baptized but one adult this last half year, who is the 
daughter of a Quaker, and 12 children, and have had two new 
communicants ; I enclose the printed letter without any other 
apology for so doing, but that I think it my duty to submit my- 
self to the direction of this Honourable Society, if I have been 
moved by an over forward zeal to appear publicly in a cause 
that might have been much better managed by other hands. 
My humble duty to the Honourable Society, and hearty prayers 
to Almighty God, to prosper all their charitable undertakings 
and designs, concludes this from 

' Rev. Sir, &c., 

James WETMOE.E."a 

In the following year Mr. Wetmore reports to the Secretary : 


Rye, May I5th, 1731. 

Rev. Sir, 

" Though I have nothing very remarkable to acquaint you 
with, yet in compliance with the commands of the Honourable 
Society, I think it my duty frequently to write to you, if it was 
for no other end but to engage myself to the greater diligence 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. p. 41, 43. (Hawks'.) 


and industry in the discharge of my function, that I might ha^e 
this at least to give an account of whatever the success proves ; 
however, I have some encouragement, in that my endeavours have 
been so far blessed with success, that the Independents can get 
no teacher among them, though Connecticut people have assist- 
ed them with money to build two meeting houses in this town. 
The party, I think, would soon be at an end were it not for the 
teachers in Connecticut that once in a while come along and 
endeavour to keep up the zeal of some few that instigate others ; 
but many of them come constantly to church, especially the 
younger ones, and as to the White Plains, where lives the chief 
body, I endeavour to make them easy by going every eighth 
Sunday to preach to them, when they come to church univer- 
sally, and seem to express a satisfaction in it. I am in great 
hopes I shall gain them over in time, by God's help. The peo- 
ple of Bedford, who are the most rigid and severe of all, came 
very generally to church when I was last among them, and 
many that never before were at church at North Castle. Mr. 
Dwight is very diligent in his business and well beloved for his 
diligence and sobriety, but the people in some respects are slack, 
and not so zealous as I expected many of them would be ; to 
remedy which, I would request in Mr. Dwight's behalf, and for 
the greater benefit of his labours, that the Honourable Society 
would signify their pleasure to him that upon a prospect of 
doing greater service to religion he might remove to any other 
part of the Parish with the advice and consent of the minister 
and churchwardens of the Parish. This would be a means to 
quicken their zeal, and make them more punctual in fulfilling 
their engagements, for they will be very unwilling to part with 

Since Christmas last I have baptized two adults, nineteen 
white children, and one negro. My communicants have in- 
creased none. I meet with the most trouble from the Quakers, 
who are extraordinary zealous to propagate their sect in this 
Parish, there being swarms of theni at Long Island and West- 
chester, from whence they make frequent visits hither, and hold 


their yearly meetings, monthly, quarterly and weekly meetings, 
yea, and sometimes daily. The letter I printed to a parishioner 
which I enclosed to you last fall, did some service in putting a 
check to them, but they have very lately printed and dispersed 
what they call an answer to it, which, though silly enough, 
amuseth some people, especially after themselves have mightily 
applauded it ; by way of reply to which I have prepared three 
dialogues which I have now ready for the press, and have com- 
municated them to the Rev. Mr. Johnson and some others, who 
earnestly advise to the printing of them and think they will be 
of great service to stop the growth of Q,uakerism in these parts, 
and Mr. Johnson tells rhe he will give twenty or thirty shillings 
towards it, and some of my parishioners have subscribed about 
forty shilhngs more, but the whole charge will be about £10, 
which considering the eircumstances of my family, is something 
too heavy upon me ; for as the Quakers disperse their books 
freely, so our people will expect it from me, and indeed they 
have never been used to buy books, for besides the books I re- 
ceive from the Society, I have myself been at about £5 charge 
towards the letters I have dispersed among them ; fos: which 
reason, if the Honourable Society would be pleased to give me 
some small assistance in this matter, it shall be thankfully ac- 
cepted and employed for the benefit of other Parishes as well as 
my own, and I ask it the rather because 1 don't know how far I 
shall find it necessary to proceed, having thus begun with them. 
I shall only add my earnest prayers to Almighty God to suc- 
ceed all the charitable designs of the Honourable Society for the 
extensive good of mankind, and beg leave to subscribe, as I am 
in great sincerity. 

Reverend Sir, 
Yours and the Honourable Society's 

most obedient and humble servant, 

James Wetmore."* 

At the close of 1731, he acquaints the Society "that his Parish 

« New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ,ii, 43, 45. (Hawks'.) 



is in a flourishing condition ; that last year he baptized one 
adult person and twenty children, two of which were negroes ; 
hath some new communicants, and that all things in his Parish, 
are at present quiet and easy, and likely to remain so." 

In the following communication to his Diocesan, Mr. Wet- 
more refers to his printed dialogues which seem to have ended 
the controversy with the Quakers, and also to the great want of 
a suffragan bishop : — 


Rye, Province of New- York, April 3rd, 1732. 

My Lord, 

" I take this opportunity, by Mr. Beach, who waits upon your 
Lordship for your benediction and orders, to return my humble 
thanks for the favour of your letter in approbation of what I had 
undertaken in respect of the Q,uakers. I now send by Mr. 
Beach, the dialogue I printed in reply to the Quaker's answer 
to my letter, in which I should have spared some expressions, if 
I had received your Lordship's directions before they were 
printed, but the greatest asperity being only the relating of such 
facts as are open and notorious, they can make little advantage 
of it. They are a sort of people that take greatest advantage 
from being used with smoothness, which they fancy their own 
merit extorts. They did riot expect I would have treated them 
with so much freedom and plainness, but lam well assured it 
has done good ; it has opened the eyes and awakened the con- 
sideration of some that were almost drawn over to them upon 
account of their being thought a sober, virtuous, good people, 
though they have as many vitiary people in their herd as 
among any sort of professors, but their trick is to call such only 
• hangers on,' though they are as zealous for their principles as 
the best of 'em. 

It is now 9 months since the dialogues were printed, and 
though at first they gave out they had an answer ready, yet it 


does not appear, and of late not a syllable is heard about it, they 
are mighty still now, and rather afraid of losing their own peo- 
ple than intent upon prostituting ours. 

Mr. Beach will be able to acquaint your Lordship how fast 
the principles of the church gain ground in New England, 
chiefly among the teachers in Connecticut, on which account 
we might hope to have this country reclaiined from this schism^ 
so dishonourable and prejudicial to religion, and destructive to the 
souls of men, if some method could be projected for perfecting 
an establishment of religion here, and removing the difficulty 
"which is indeed great and burthensome, of going 1000 leagues 
over sea,[through many perils, for ordination ; if only one suffra- 
gan was allowed under your Lordship, (the two or three would do 
better to ordain and confirm,) in other things Commissaries might 
answer, it would give a new tone to the Church among us, and 
I believe the Country would generally submit to an Episcopal 
government, in a little time if there was provision, that laws or 
canons might be made here for regulating some circumstantial 
things, according to the peculiar circumstances of this Country, 
I mean in reference to the calling of Ministers and their main- 
tainance, which the people will be fond of having their voice in, 
and in respect of which they are afraid of imposition, and per- 
haps it may be thought not necessary to insist upon a perfect 
uniformity, in things indifferent, as a term of communion, where 
unity in government, and all essentials can be gained, for which 
a discretionary power in your Lordship, or your suffragan, to 
prescribe for this country, the form and method of worship at 
Croft, wherein it may be thought proper to bar in any respect, 
from the established English Liturgy would be sufficient. 

I have not the vanity to think of projecting a scheme or pre- 
scribing to your Lordship, but only to breathe out my own and 
others wishes and desires into the bosom of your Lordship, 
as the Father and head of the Church, in the Plantations, who 
has expressed a zealous and fraternal care of us, and whose 
wisdom and goodness we confide in with pleasure, to project for 


us, and still further bring about that what i? wanting, may be 
perfected and set in order. I am with all dutiful submission, 

My Lord, &c., 

James Wetmore."* 

: His next semi-annual report to the Secretary, bears date the 
same year. 


Rye, New- York, June &th, 1732. 

Rev- Boctor, 
" 1 have received yours of Dec. 13th, 1731, wherein I am order- 
ed to acquaint the people of North Castle with the sentiments 
of the Honourable Society, concerning their neglect in encour- 
agnig Mr. Dwight's school, which letter I have communicated 
to Mr. Dwight, and he has discoursed the people upon it, and T 
expect to go among them in a fortnight, and then 1 shall dis- 
course them myself, upon the affair. Mr. Dwight tells me they are 
very unwilling he should be removed from them, the people are 
indeed very poor and that which is worse, they are unhappily 
divided one against another, which hinders their uniting to pro- 
mote their common interest ; those we had greatest dependence 
upon, to encourage learning and religion among them, are either 
dead or fallen to decay, and removed out of the place, within 
two years ; Mr. Dwight tells me, as he thinks them a poor unfor- 
tunate people, deserving compassion, so he has hopes, their af- 
fairs will mend, and he is willing to make some further trial, if 
the Honourable Society think fit to allow him, being urged by 
some new comers among them, and after some trial he will ac- 
quaint you with his success. Mr. Cleator, who has been the 
Honourable Society's schoolmaster in Rye for many years, died 
about the latter end of March. The people have desired me to 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 54, 56. (Hawks'.) 


present their hearty thanks to the Honourable Society, for the 
benefit they have had by Mr. Cleator's labours, and to request 
in their behalf the continuance of the Honourable Society's fa- 
vours, and that Samuel Purdy, Esq., may be appointed to suc- 
ceed Mr. Cleator, who is a gentleman very well respected in the 
town, a constant communicant in the Church, a man of good 
abilities and sober exemplary life, and conversation ; he is the 
foremost Justice of the Peace in the Parish, and one of the (Quo- 
rum as well as chaplain of the militia, but these being pla- 
ces that require, rather than make a fortune, he has private 
reasons to make him accept a mission from the Honourable So- 
ciety, and the greater his interests in the people's esteems and 
affections, by the honourable character he sustains ; he -will be 
under the greater advantage to promote religion and the interests 
of the church for which he has always had a good affection and 
his father before him, who was one of the chief promoters of the 
Church, in the time of Mr. Muirson and Mr. Bridge, being Jus- 
tice of the Peace and Representative of the county upon the As- 
sembly, for many years. This gentleman is well qualified to 
teach and instruct children in the principles of religion, and 
such learning as is fit for the country, and I doubt not he will 
be very faithful and industrious, if the Honourable Society will 
be pleased to employ him. Since my last I have baptized one 
adult and twenty children, of which two are negroes, and have ad- 
mitted three more new communicants, and buried three of those 
that were formerly communicants ; the state of the Church con- 
tinues flourishing, all things at present are easy and quiet, and like- 
ly to remain so. . Our trustees are repairing the windows of the 
church, for which they raised £20 last year by a public rate, and 
we are contriving to build a steeple to the Church, for which we 
have begun subscriptions. I have bought a bell^ to make a pre- 
sent of, weighing 93 lb., that for the bigness sounds well, and I 

» The first notice of a Bell occurs in the minutes of the Vestry, for January 
16th, 1733, when it was resolved " to raise £l for a Bell Ringer and sweeping the 
Church." — See Church Records, p. 57. 


have subscribed thirty shillings besides to the people ; Mr. Clea- 
tor has also, upon his death bed, given half his last years salary 
to this use, so that I hope we shall accomplish it, tho' I do not 
find the people so ready to subscribe as I expected ; a zeal for 
the honour and decency of God's house, and worship, is a tem- 
per very much wanting in this country, I pray God to increase 
it and to give abundant success to the pains and charitable de- 
signs and endeavours of the Honourable Society, &e , 

James Wetmore."^ 

Mr. Joseph Cleator, whose death is alluded to in the above 
letter, and whose appointment has been already noticed, " la- 
boured faithfully and successfully for nearly twenty-eight years,'^ 
in his useful calling as schoolmaster for the Society, for which 
he received the very moderate compensation of £15 sterling, 
per annum. 

In, the following report, Mr. Wetmore again recommends Mr. 
Samuel Purdy, to the Society: — 



Rye, New- York, Aug. 20th, 1733. 

Rev. Sir, 
" Last summer I informed the Honourable Society of the death 
of Mr. Cleator, their schoolmaster in this town, and the request 
of sundry inhabitants, that Samuel Purdy, Esq., might be ap- 
pointed to succeed him in this school with the Honourable Soci- 
ety's bounty, but having had no answer to that letter, pre- 
sume to intercede in behalf of the poor people in this Parish, to 
have that mission continued, without which many children will 
have little to distinguish them in their education from the wild 
heathen. Mr. Dwight, at North Castle, continues very diligent 

•■New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 63, 64. (Hawks'.) 


and faithful in his school, and very well esteemed by the people 
there, but the great misfortunes of that place make him weary 
of it; more than half the people that first encouraged his coming 
among them, and were very zealous for the church, and desi- 
rous of preserving some appearance of religion and the worship 
of God among them, in that new place, are since dead or remov- 
ed away, and those left are so poor that they can give him but- 
little encouragement. His sober and good behaviour, and dili- 
gence in his calling, renders him worthy of recommendation, and 
the great extent of this Parish, the number of children, as well as 
slaves that live so remote, that they never appear to be catechi- 
zed of the Church, and are never likely to have any catechetical 
instructions, unless some further endeavours are used, than can be 
expected from one minister,in so large a Parish, makesme presume 
to add this further request, that the Honourable Society, if they 
think fit, would appoint Mr. Dwight, Catechist for the Parish of 
Rye, with hberty to teach school in such partsof the Parish where 
he shall find the best prospect of doing service in his catechetical 
office, and that he be ordered to take particular pains in several 
parts of the parish, which he may perform by appointing several 
places to attend that work by turns, and I shall be ready to assist 
all that lies in my power, to render such a method successful. 

Our most forward promoters of Independency, have of late dis- 
covered a better temper, and often come to Church, and I hope 
that a few years more will wholly wear that spirit out. As for the 
Quakers, there is little to be done with them, but only to guard 
against their attempts, "and I think, (by God's blessing) they 
have not made one proselyte here for two years past. Since 
my last, I have baptized one adult, twenty-four children in this 
parish, and three in Greenwich ; I have had but one new com- 
municant, but there are four or five more which 1 hope will re- 
ceive, next Christmas. 

Rev. Sir, yours, and the Honourable Society's 

most obedient and humble servant, 

James Wetmore."^' 
• New- York MSS. from Archives at Falham, vol. i. 67. 68. (Hawksy 


The Society appears to have acted immediately upon the re- 
commendation of Mr. Wetmore, by appointing Mr. Samuel Pur- 
dy, schoolmaster at Rye, with a salary of £15 sterling per an- 

Notwithstanding his arduous duties at home, it seems that 
Mr. Wetmore, like his predecessors, occasionally extended his 
missionary labors into Connecticut. 



Rye, June 2ith, 1734. 

Rev. Sir, 
" My Parish continues in a flourishing state, tho' we have 
many yet that show too little reverence for religion. The 
Church is commonly more filled this summer than heretofore, and 
since my last, I have baptized in my own Parish, twenty-seven 
children and two adults, in Greenwich in Connecticut, three chil- 
dren, and Norfolk, in Connecticut, two children and one adult, an 
Indian slave, and I have admitted eight new communicants, all of 
very sober conversation, and gopd lives. The people of Connec- 
ticut begin to show a friendly disposition towards the constitu- 
tion of the Church of England, which disposition seems to in- 
crease apace, which makes more and more want of a Bishop in 
the country, that some places might be supplied with ministers, 
that now cannot, without burdening the Honourable Society. 
Some zealous bigots among the Independent teachers are awa- 
kened to make fresh attempts to amuse and enslave the peo- 
ple by their scurrillous pamphlets, which they spread industri- 
ously, full of bold, audacious calumnies, but little argument 
yet would be of mischievous consequence, if we did not anti- 
dote their poison by printing and dispersing such books as ap- 
pear serviceable to this end, in which I was urged last summer 
to give some assistance by printing an answer to a pamphlet 
that undertook to prove the necessity of separating from the 


Church of England, and the divine right of Presbyterian ordi- 
nation and government. There is now dispersing in this coun- 
try a defence of that pamphlet, stuffed with vile aspersions and 
immannerly reflections upon the civil and ecclesiastical govern- 
ment of the nation, done by two or three hands, one of which 
I conclude Mr. Browne, of Providence, will reply to, and the 
other, Mr. Johnson and I must prepare an antidote for, which I 
hope will prove to as good acceptance in the country as what we 
printed last year, and have the same good effect, which has 
been very visible in promoting the interest of the Church. My 
prayers and endeavours shall always be zealous to promote the 
great and charitable designs of the Honourable Society for prop- 
agating the gospel of Christ. 

I am, Rev. Sir, your most obedient, humble servant, 

James Wetmore.""- 

In his report for the years of 1735, 1738, 1739, occur the fol- 
lowing memoranda : — 



Rye, New- York, Dec. 5th, 1735. 

Rev. Doctor, 

"It is no less my inclination than duty to obey the Honoura- 
ble Society's order in keeping a frequent correspondence with 
you, although to transmit an account exactly according to the 
prescribed method in this Parish,- seems impracticable ; the 
bounds of the parish being very large, and the people so often 
removing to and from, so many sectaries of so various denomi- 
nations, and so many of such an indifferent temper, that scarce 
themselves know what profession they are of. 

» New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii, p. 74, 75. (Hawks'.) 


'I continue my method of preaching alternately at several 
parts of the parish, viz : three Sundays in the Church of Rye ; 
then one at North Castle ; then three again at Rye ; then one 
at White Plains ; besides, the first Wednesday in each month 
I preach at Bedford, about eighteen miles from Rye, within my 
parish, and upon the request of some that profess themselves of 
the Church of England, I have preached several times at Nor' 
walk, Stamford, Greenwich, and Horse neck, the western towns 
in Connecticut colony, in which places I have baptized several 
adult persons and near twenty children 'the year past, and ad- 
mitted five to the Holy Communion. They are very desirous 
in those towns, to be supplied with an Episcopal minister, but 
because we have little grounds to give them encouragement to 
hope for such a supply at present, I have promised to preach at 
Stamford, which is near the centre of those towns, the third 
Wednesday of every month, and find a very considerable con- 
gregation of very serious, well disposed people, and the inclina- 
tion of others towards the established Church, seems daily in- 
creasing in those parts as well as several other parts of New 

In my own parish, although a contest among the inhabitants 
concerning their lands, has occasioned some difficulty to keep 
them united in religion, and a few rash and heady persons have 
grown to neglect the Church upon that account, yet by the acces- 
sion of others, the Church is generally as full 'as ever it has 
been, and a party spnit among the sectaries decreaseth very ev- 
idently. I have baptized the year past, five adults, two of 
which were negroes. • , 

Mr. Dwight's catechumens, and several others, are desirous 
of baptism, which I have promised to administer to them as 
soon as Mr. D wight has prepared them by necessary instruc- 
tions. They belong to Quaker masters, but yet got leave to come 
pretty often to Church, where Mr. Dwight catechises them with 
such chidren as offer themselves after evening service, and keeps 
a school at the White Plains to the people's good satisfaction, 


and Mr. Purdy is in his school at Rye ; is very diligent and ac- 
ceptable to the people."* 



Rye, July \st, 1738. 
Rev. Sir : 

" There are, besides the numbers contained in the enclosed 
Notitia Parochialis,' about fifty families near adjoining to this 
Parish, in the Colony of Connecticut, who have requested me to 
officiate among them as often as I can be spared from my own 
Parish, among whom I preach a lecture the third Wednesday in 
each month ; visit them in sickness, baptize their children, and 
onee in a year, administer the Lord's Supper among them j 
many of them live so near as to attend church at Rye pretty 
constantly. These people are much oppressed by* the Dissent- 
ers among whom they live, which in some degree prevents the 
increase of their numbers, and when we have applied to all 
their courts for a just relief, according to their own law, we 
have been baffled under one trifling pretence or another, even 
where the law appears most plain in our favour, and unless some 
powerful protection can be obtained from home for the profes- 
sors of the Church of England, in their just and natural rights, 
that colony will find so many pretences to oppress them, as will 
put the Church of England under the greatest discountenance. 

Some particulars of this nature, will, I believe, soon be rep- 
resented by the elergy."!" 

To this account may be added the following, from the Socie- 
ty's Abstracts : — 

Mr. Wetmore acquaints the Society, by a letter of July 1st, 

" New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. p. 90, 92. (Hawks'.) 
*> New- York MSS. from Archives at Faliam, vol. ii. p. 117, 118. (Hawks'.) 


1736, '' that his congregation holds well together, and his church 
is full and flourishing ; and he had baptized within the last 
half year, five adults, besides children. Mr. Wetmore hath 
likewise transmitted certificates of the behaviour of the two 
schoolmasters of the Society, in his Parishes, attested likewise 
by the churchwardens, and other inhabitants, by which it ap- 
pears, that they both give daily attendance in their schools ; 
and Mr. Purdy, the schoolmaster in the town of Rye, teaches 
twenty-one children, whose parents profess themselves of the 
Church of England, and fourteen children of Dissenting pa- 
rents, as likewise three Dutch, two Jewish, and one negro child, 
in all, forty-one, and that Mr. Dwight, the schoolmaster, at the 
White Plains, six miles froai Rye, teaches twenty-seven child- 
ren, whose parents profess themselves to be of the Church of 
England, seventeen born of Dissenting parents, and two negro 
children, in all, forty-six. The Society hath sent Mr. Wetmore 
two dozen of small Common Prayer books for the poor."" 



Rye, August 5th, 1739. 

Rev. Sir. 

" The two last times I preached at the White Plains, where 
Mr. Dwight teaches school, it was judged the congregation con- 
sisted of at least three hundred people, where, not having any 
house large enough to receive the people, I am obliged to preach 
in the open fields ; and if the congregation at Rye increases as 
it has done the year past, we must be forced to enlarge the Par- 
ish church."!' 

Mr. Wetmore, by a letter, dated July 15th, 1740, writes :— 
" that besides his regular duty at Rye, he officiates once a month 

* Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 

*■ New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. p. 107. (Hawks'.) 


at Stamford and at Greenwich in Connecticut, and lately bap- 
tized at Greenwich, a very sober man, his wife, and all the fam- 
ily, except one negro woman, whom he reserved for further in- 
struction ; he had been a long time instructing this family, who 
had been tainted with Quakerism and Anabaptism." Mr. Wet- 
more spent some days last winter, in visiting sundry families 
in the woods, and a great number of people assembled to whom 
he read divine service, and preached, and baptized one adult, 
and eight children ; and they were very thankful, and pressed 
him much to visit them again, which he proposed to do in a 
short time. According to Mr. Wetmore's Notitia Parochialis, 
his number of communicants is fifty, and he had baptized from 
the 3d day of May, 1739, one hundred and eleven children, of 
whom, five were negroes, and seven adults, of whom one was a 
negro ; and he returns thanks for some Common Prayer books, 
lately sent him."^ 


Ri/e, Sept. 28th, 1741. 
Rev. Sir, 

" The efforts of the sectaries in this parish, have been various 
the year past, and their endeavours indefatigable, to weaken and 
destroy our church, and they have been much encouraged by 
the countenance of some that were formerly professors of the 
Church of England, but for several years past, have proved the 
worst enemies to it. However, by God's help, we hitherto 
maintain our ground, and tho' some few of our number are cor- 
rupted with the wild enthusiasm of the new sect, which has in- 
fected the greater part of the Independents, yet in all the parts 
of the parish, where I preach alternately, the congregations seem 
to be as large as ever they have been, and I hope the measures 
I use to establish and strengthen my people in the faith of Chris- 
tianity, according to the doctrines of the Church of Erlgland, 

• Printed Abstracts of the Ven. Prop. Soc, from 1740 to 1741, 


will, by God's blessing, prevent this new Methodism, or rather, 
downright distraction, in the shape it now appears among the 
itinerant sectaries, from gaining much ground among us. I 
shall only enclose the Notitia Parochialis, and beg leave to pre- 
sent my humble duty to the Venerable Board, and subscribe, 
Rev. Sir, your most obedient, 

humble servant, 

James Wetmore."^- 

According to Mr. Wetmore's Notilia Parochialis, (for 1741,) 
he had baptized within twelve months, sixty-nine children, four 
of whom were negroes ; and four adults, one of whom was a 

In the two following extracts from reports of Mr. Wetmore, 
some further allusions are made to the " new Methodists, or 
right down distractionists," who were probably associated with 
Mr. Whitefield in his labours : — 



Rye, March 25th, 1743. 

Rev. Sir, 

"The boundaries of my parish being very large, I preach al- 
ternately at five different places, yet so as to be three Sundays 
or four, to be at the parish church in Rye. I have considerable 
large congregations in all the out places where I preach, but 
they mostly consist of people unsettled in their principles, and 
who go after all sorts of teachers that come in their way, and 
many of them much confused by the straggling methodist 
teachers that are continually about among us. 

Some few families that professed themselves of the Church of 
England, living very remote from the church, have been car- 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. 124, 125. (Hawks'.) 


ried away with their zealous pretences ; and as the Dissenting 
faction have now got one of that sort ordained among them, re- 
siding not far from me, it gives me a great deal of trouble and 
uneasiness. Some that used to frequent the church, and had al- 
^lost worn off their prejudices against it, now follow those meet- 
ings, and are wheedled after them by continued visits and fair 
pretences, but we have some again made more zealous in attend, 
ing the Church, and I hope are more settled in their principles.''^ 



Province of New- York, Rye, Sept. 29th, 1743. 

Rev. Sir, 
" As to the state of my Parish, nothing very remarkable has 
happened since my last, but I find my care and labours in. 
creased, by having two Independent Methodist teachers settled 
by that party In my Parish, besides exhorters and itinerants 
that frequently call people together to instill wild and enthu- 
siastic notions into them. They have made much confusion in 
the remote parts of the Parish, but chiefly among those who al- 
ways were Dissenters ; and when my turn is to preach in those 
places, I find my congregations are larger than before those tu- 
mults, and many apply to me for instruction, and to have the 
doctrines of Christianity explained to them, which I endeavour, 
in the most plain and intelligible manner I can, according to the 
articles, catechism, and offices of our Liturgy. And although 
the teacher that holds his meeting near the parish church, is 
much cried up by his party, and indeed is unwearied in his at- 
tempts to amuse the people with fair speeches, and prejudice 
them against the Church in his private visits from house to 
house, yet some of his first proselytes have returned to the 
church already, and I don't know of one he has gained for 

' New- York MSS., from Archives at Falham, vo'. ii. p. 148. (Hawks_.) 


six months past, and our church was never so full as this sum- 
mer, insomuch that we find a necessity of enlarging it, which I 
hope with the next spring I will prevail with my people to ef- 
fect. I was last week at Middletown, on Connecticut River, 
eighty miles from this place, which, being the place of my na- 
tivity, I visit annually, and keep one Sunday among them, 
where I find a disposition to the Church grows very much, and 
there are near forty families that would rejoice to have a min- 
ister of the Church of England among them."a 

One of the " wild and enthusiastic notions" of the new Me- 
thodists referred to in the above letter, related to the doctrine of 
Regeneration, as appears from the following : — 



Jamaica., L. J., Nov. 22nd, 1740. 

Rev. Sib, 

" Some enthusiastic itinerant teachers have of late been preach- 
ing upon this island. The notorious Mr. Whitefield being at the 
head of them, and among other pernicious tenets have broached 
such false and erroneous opinions concerning the doctrine of Re- 
generation as tend to the destruction of true religion and of a 
holy and virtuous life ; and therefore, I take this opportunity to 
beg that the Society would be pleased to bestow upon the peo- 
ple of this Parish a few of Dr. Waterland's pieces on that sub- 
ject, and of his Lordship, the Bishop of London's Pastoral Letters 
upon Lukewarmness and Enthusiasm.'' The agitation of these 
erroneous views, led to a thorough examination of the doctrine 

" New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. pp. 149, 150. (Hawks'.) 
' New-York, MSS. from Archives at Pulham. (Hawks'.) In 174^, Mr. Colgan 
asks for " some small tracts, such as the Trial of Mr. Whitefield's Spirit; An 
Englishman Directed in the Choice of his Religion; Bishop Stillingfleets Unrea- 
sonableness of Separation." 


of Regeneration by Dickinson, on the Presbyterian, and Wet- 
more, on the Episcopal side. 

In 1743, Mr. Dickinson published a work " on the Nature and 
Necessity of Regeneration, with remarks on " Dr. Waterland's 
Discourse on Regeneration." To which the Rev. James Wet- 
more replied by " A Defence of Waterland's Discourse on Re- 

At this period, Mr. Wetmore writes to the Society, " That he 
is fully occupied in performing duty at Rye, Scarsdale, and the 
White Plains, and calls for an assistant under him at Bedford 
and North Castle, where are four hundred families, the inhabi- 
tants promising £30 to his assistance." In the following letter 
Mr. Wetmore speaks of Mr. Lamson who was subsequently ap- 
pointed to fill the office : — 


Province of New -York, Rye, Dec. Hth, 1744. 
Rev. Sir, 

" Mr. Lamson took a passage from Boston sometime in June 
last, and there being no account of his arrival in England, it is 
feared he is taken by a Spanish privateer and carried into some 
port in Spain. If that should prove, to be his hard fortune, I 
hope, by the favour of Divine Providence, he may find some way 
for redemption and get to London. 

In Ridgefield not being able to do so much for the support of 
a minister, as to encourage them to hope for obtaining one to 
themselves alone, have proposed joining with the northern parts 
of my Parish so as to have a minister perform divine service 
alternately at Ridgefield, Bedford and North Castle, and many 
of my Parishioners in these towns seem very forward to have it 
eflfected as they live so remote from the Parish Church at Rye, 
that they seldom or ever go to church except once in two 



months, which is the proportion I have observed for officia- 
ting in these parts, having a considerable congregation at the 
White Plains and Scarsdale, about seven miles west of the 
Parish Church, which I also attend once in two inonths. 

In the northern parts, Bedford and North Castle, were near 
four hundred families, mostly very poor people ; many un- 
baptized and such as have very little sense of religion. 
Reverend Sir, 

Your most obedient 

and humble servant, 

J. Wetmore.''^ 

The Society's Abstracts for 1745, say :— "Mr. Wetmore, the 
Society's missionary to the Parish of Rye> in this Province, ac- 
quaints the Society that he is so fully employed in perform- 
ing the duties of his holy function at Rye, Scarsdale and the 
White Plains, that he cannot attend the distant parts of his 
parish so often as he could wish, and therefore, he humbly 
prays the Society, instead of appointing a successor to the late 
Mr. D wight, the Society's schoolmaster at the White Plains, 
they would grant him an assistant minister to officiate under 
him ; and the good people of Bedford and North Castle, in which 
are four hundred families that stand much in want and are 
very desirous of instruction in the true sound principles of 
Christianity, and to those of Ridgefield, adjoining to them, 
where a church is already built ; and the inhabitants of those 
towns earnestly petitioning the Society to the same purpose, 
and promising £30 per annum towards the expence, the So- 
ciety hath granted this request and appointed the Rev. Mr. 
Lamson, lately arrived from New England, with very ample 
testimonials from the clergy of that province, to be upon his 
admission into holy orders, assistant mmister to Mr. Wetmore, 
in officiating to the inhabitants of Bedford, North Castle, and 

- New- York MSS. from Archives at Piilham, vol. ii, p. 134. (Hawks'.) 


Ridgefield, with a salary of £20 per annum ; besides a gratuity 
of the same sum out of compassion to Mr. Lamson's sufferings 
and necessities, who was taken prisoner, stripped, and carried 
into Prance, on his voyage towards England, and afterwards 
in his way from Port Louis, in France, to London, was de- 
tained four months by a fever, at Salisbury, where he lost, 
by that distemper, his companion and fellow sufferer, Mr. 
Minor, another worthy candidate for the Society's favour; and 
the Society hath lately had the satisfaction to be informed 
that Mr. Lamson arrived safe sometime since at New- York, 
and went from thence to enter upon the duties of his mis- 
sion. •'» 

Under date of March 25th, 1745, Mr. Wetmore writes to the 
Secretary as follows :— 

Rev. Str, 

" Our several churches in this colony continue in peace, and a 
very good harmony among the clergy in general, which good 
agreement and comely order in a time of so great confusion 
and disorder among all our sectaries, gains the Church of 
England much honour and reputation in the country and brings 
many proselites to it. I have had several from the wild Metho- 
dists themselves, whose zeal and madness very much abates 
through the country. 

I am, Reverend Sir, 

Your most obedient 

humble servant, 

James Wetmore."1> 

The following extract shows that the flames kindled in 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Society. 

* New-'Vork MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. p. 155. (Hawks'.) 
This year Colonel Robinson, one of the wardens of Trinity Church, N. Y., was 
ordered by the Vestry of that church to deliver (o Mr. Peter Jay, the old com- 
munion cloth, pulpit cloth and desk cloth, for the use of the Church at Rye, ia 
Westchester County. 


1722, by Johnson, Cutler, Wetmore and others, were spreading 
rapidly, and adding fresh numbers and strength to EpiscoT 
pacy : — 


Province of New - York, Rye, Oct. 3, 1745. 

Rev. Sir, 

" I was three weeks ago at Middletown, in Connecticut, the 
place of my nativity, which I have been used to visit annually 
while my father lived there, and have not only frequently 
preached among them and baptized many children and some 
adults, but taken pains in conversation with my relations and ac- 
quaintances to give them just notions of religion and beget in them 
a lilting to the Church of England, and I am rejoiced to see very 
hopeful prospect of a good church gathering in that place, chiefly 
promoted by some brethren of mine; and it Was a pleasure to me 
to observe at the Commencement, in New Haven, (at which I 
was present in my way to Middletown, with Dr. Johnson and 
several others of our clergy) no less than five of the Batchelors 
graduated this year, openly professing the Church of England, 
and was told some others of them had a good disposition to- 
wards it, by whom we were treated very respectfully ; and 
if we may imagine the questions defended in publick dispu- 
tation as the prevailing sentiments of the country, we may 
see a great change in that colony for the better in a very few 
years — by the following questions, which indeed I was sur- 
prised to hear defended by those whose fathers have held, and 
acted upon their reverse, in their separation from the Church of 
England. The questions publickly disputed, were : — 

1st. The Potestus legislativa sit uniouoique societati Essentialis affirmat re- 

2nd. Aures in se incjiffiantes sunt proprie humonie potestalis objectum respon- 
dens affirmat. 


3rd. An conscientia dictermioa, conferent jen agendi vel cogitandi contra veri- 
tatem nuget respondeas. 

Reverend Sir, yours, fcc, fcc, 

James Wetmore."* 

The two following are Mr. Wetmore's semi-annual reports 
for 1748:— 


Rye, March 26th, 1748. 

Rev. Sir, 

"Since my last, dated December 28th, 1747, nothing remarka- 
ble relating to the state of religion has happened among us, 
except the deaths of sundry persons that have been esteemed 
principal inhabitants in the Parish, and some new attempts of 
the enemies of the Church to promote divisions in the Parish, 
in hopes of making some advantages to themselves by such 
contentions, in which I hope they will meet with a disap- 
pointment. That by this means they have hindered us from 
repairing our Church and adding galleries and steeple to it as 
we projected, at least, we are obliged to defer it because some of 
the most wealthy of the professors of our Church have, to gain 
an ascendancy in the Parish, so far sided with the Independents, 
that they will do nothing which the others will dislike. All 
endeavours can't excite a proper zeal in the professors of the 
Church of England among us to come to the Lord's Supper 
so that the number of actual communicants continues small. 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii., p. 155. (Hawk,s'.) 
The Society's Abstracts for 1745, say ; — "and Mr. William Sturgeon, a Batchelor of 
Arts of that college, (Yale) who teaches a school within the precincts of the 
Parish of Rye, though the son of a Presbyterian teacher, who lived lately among 
them he desired Mr. Wetmore to recommend him to the Society as a candidate 
for employment in the Church, which he attends steadily, and is esteemed very 
■worthy of favour, and as such he is entered upon the books of the Society." — Print- 
ed Abstracts for 1745- 


in proportion to the number of professors, and deaths, and re- 
movals, seem to equal our accessions ; but 1 have lately been 
using such endeavours with many, whose conversation in other 
respects, appears sober and christianlike, and have hopes of four 
or five new communicants at Easter. 

I lately preached a lecture at Mamaroneck, the westermost 
part of my Parish, where many more attended than I had ex- 
pectation of, upon which I have promised to visit them again 
and continue to give them frequent lectures as long as their 
zeal will continue to attend them ; I have also undertaken to 
preach a monthly lecture at North Castle, besides their usual 
turn upon Sundays, and this I shall continue as long as I find a 
good disposition in this people to attend such lectures. 

James Wetmore."* 


Ri/e, Sept. 2^th, 1748. 

Rev. Sir, 

"In compliance with the commands of the Honourable Society, 
to which I would always pay dutiful and strict obedience, I give 
you this trouble, with my Notitia Parochialis enclosed, and ac- 
quaint you that I have drawn upon the treasurer a sett of bills, 
bearing date this day, for £25 sterling, payable at thirty days 
sight in favour of Mr. Samuel Farmer, merchant. Since Mr. 
Lamson has removed from this Parish and Mr. Chandler decli- 
ned accepting the catechetical mission at North Castle and Bed- 
ford, I do the duty at these places as formerly ; and although 
I find large congregations when I preach among them, yet I 
don't find that forwardness I could wish, to exert themselves in 
building churches and providing for the support of a minister or 
catechist; and it is a trouble to me that the same negligent 
temper prevails in other parts of my Parish. Our church, the 

■ New-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii., pp. 196, 197. (Hawks'.) 


only one in the Parish, is much out of repair, which, after seve- 
ral year's endeavouring to bring my people to a scheme to make 
decent and ornaniental, I am yet unable to effect, obstructed by 
the difl5cult humours of some professing themselves of the 
Church, chiefs of the Parish for estates, from whom I have had 
my greatest troubles since I have had the care of this Parish. 
To whom, also, 1 esteem it owing that the dissenters are now 
endeavouring to get into their possession the small glebe be- 
longing to our Church, which is scarcely worth the charge of a 
law suit; yet I have commenced a suit to defend if, which I 
believe, the wealthiest of my parishioners will not assist me with 
a farthing to support. 

I have enlarged and repaired the parsonage house some 
years ago, at my own charge, solely, and it is now grown so 
old and decayed, that it is scarce worth repairing. As I find it 
'agreeable to the sentiments of the Honourable Society, that the 
people to whom they send missionaries, should provide a house 
and glebe for their minister, I believe a line or two from you up- 
on this subject, directed to the churchwardens, would be of more 
effect than many words of mine, which I therefore request the 
favourof; and as I have not been troublesome by beggmg books 
from the Society for many years, and Prayer Books and Cate- 
chisms are grown very scarce in my Parish, and poor people 
frequently applying to me to be supplied, a small present of that 
kind would be thankfully received by me and the poor people 
that are destitute. I only add further, my humble duty to the 
Venerable Board, and hearty prayers to Almighty God to bless 
all their pious and charitable designs, and am, with much sub- 

Rev. Sir, 

your most obedient and most 
humble servant, 

James Wetmore."°- 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at ITuIham, vol. ii. p. 202. (Hawks'.) 


The Society it seems, complied with Mr. Wetmore's sugges- 
tion, for, at a Vestry meeting of this Parish, held at Mr. Benja- 
min Brown's, Sen., in Rye, January 16ih, 1749, the Rev. James 
Wetmore delivered the following letter from the Rev. Philip 
Bearcroft, D. D., Secretary to the Venerable Propagation So- 
ciety : — 

London, Charter House, June 27th, 1 749.' 

" It is with much concern that the Society for the Propaga- 
tion of the Gospel in Foreign Parts are informed, that your 
church and parsonage house are very much out of repair, and 
that even the possession of the glebe is disputed against your 
very worthy pastor, Mr. Wetmore, whose great pains and abili- 
ties in the cause of God's Church, cannot but recommend him 
to every worthy member of it ; therefore, the Society hope and 
expect, that upon due consideration, you will give orders for the 
full repair of the church and the parsonage house, and defend Mr. 
Wetmore in the maintenance of all his just rights, as you desire 
his longer continuance among you. 
I am, gentlemen, 

your very humble servant, 

Philip Bearcroft, Secretary. 
To the Churchwardens and Vestry 

of the Church of Rye, New- York."^ 

In a letter dated Rye, October the 5th, 1749, Mr. Wetmore 
writes to the Secretary as follows : — 

Rev. Sir, 
" I use my utmost endeavours to answer the design of my mis- 
sion, and find that the several congregations where I officiate by 
turns, something increasing, and not ai all lessened by the ef- 
forts of our adversaries, and that the tryal with the Dissenters, 

■ Church Rec. of Rye, 115. 


concerning the parsonage lot, is to be the 24th of this month, 
according to notice of tryal given. The lot is of no great value 
being but seven and a half acres, yet I have thought it my duty 
not to give it up without tryal, altho' lam threatened by the 
same persons, to have an ejectment served upon me for the poor 
house, and two acres of land upon which I live, unless I will 
agree to some terms whereby the Presbyterians may have a 
share of what was anciently designed for a parsonage ; but as 
there is no more than two small lots, (which have been long in 
the possession of the Church) I think to show no concession 
unless obliged to it.''^ 

That the Society's letter of June 27th, 1749, produced the de- 
sired effect, appears from the following: — 1751, the Rev. Mr. 
Wetmore, the Society's missionary at Kye, in this Province, 
writes, that "their Church had been lately improved, and is 
made neat and beautiful, and n.^t only things, but persons are 
amended ; several who were formerly very negligent in their 
attendance on the Church, and very remiss in religion, being re- 
formed in those particulars." 

The following extract is from a letter of Mr. Samuel Purdy, 
the Society's schoolmaster at Rye : — 



Rye, December 20th, 1749. 

Rev. Sir, 
" I have for several years maintained in my house, a very 
capable master, well qualified, and employed wholly to tend 
th'^ school ; whom I have inspected as to his diligence and care 
in teaching and catechising, and by the advice of the Rev. Mr. 
Wetmore, I have, a few months ago, agreed with the people 
where Mr. Dwight formerly kept his school, about three miles 

■ New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, Vol. ii. p, 223. (Hawks'.) 


and a half from the church, in a place where there is a good 
schoolhouse, built in Mr. Dwight's time, and a good number of 
children near to it, mostly of parents belonging to the Church 
— among whom I have a prospect of being more useful, by- 
having a steady and constant school kept there, than in the 
place where I have always kept it, near which are many Dis- 
senters, and their teacher having fixt himself near thereto, lately 
they have given me so much trouble and opposition, and made 
many endeavours of so little use, that [ chose to be at some 
more trouble in having the care of my school at three miles dis- 
tance, and being at the expence to pay for the master's diet at 
a convenient house there, rather than labour to little purpose 
among an ungrateful people."* 

" There is nothing with which I have been so much struck 
and impressed, (says Dr. Berrian) as the zeal, the earnestness, 
and devotedness of the schoolmasters and catechists of that 
day. The former appear to have been selected from among the 
laity with great caution and care, and to have been persons of 
respectability and worth. Some of these were men of liberal 
education, who, in the commencement of their professional life, 
were full of promise, and who ended it with respect and hon- 
or. But they all seem to have entered with the same spirit 
upon their humble labors, and to have prosecuted them with a 
patience, and interest, and a blessed result, which put ours to 
shame at the present day. Intellectual, was not then, to the ex- 
tent that it is now, separated from religious improvement, but 
both went hand in hand throughout the week. The whole of 
early life was, in a certain measure, devoted to Christian instruc- 
tion, and not merely reserved for the scanty intervals between 
the hours of worship on the Lord's day. It is delightful to ob- 
serve, in the annual reports of the schoolmasters and catechists 
to the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, with what 
cheerfulness and industry they appear to have labored in thirir 
useful, but bwly employment, dtc."'' 

• New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii, p. 323. (Hawks'.) 
^ Rev. Dr. Berrian's Hist, of Trinity Church, N. Y., pp. 86, 87. 


The two following extracts are taken from Mr. Wetmore's 
reports for 1752 : — 



Rye, April 2d, 1 752. 

Rev. Sir, 

" * * • The party disputes which have run high among 
us for several years, to my great grief, obstruct the success 
which I might otherwise hope for, in my endeavours to promote 
a becoming zeal for piety and reformation of manners among 
the looser sort of my parishioners, which are too numerous. 

I am glad to hear of more visible success among my breth- 
ren, especially in Stamford Parish, which I am told, flourishes 
happily, and increases by the diligent endeavour of good Brotli- 
er Dibblee, who nevertheless finds himself hard put to it, p sup- 
port a family with so small a salary as he has, and I am afraid 
the zeal of some young men in iXew England to undertake the 
ministry with such slender supports, and in expectation of 
more assistance from the poor people than they will find, may 
in the end prove of bad consequence in bringing contempt upon 
our order.a 



Rye, October 2d, 1752. 

Rev. Sir, 
" * * My Parish is not free from factions and par- 
ties, but I think as quiet as it has been for sundry years past, 
and the several dissenting teachers in the bounds of my Parish 

* New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol, ii. p. 243. (Hawks'.) 


make no advances to the prejudice of my several congregations, 
although they use their utmost endeavours ; however, as licen- 
tiousness and wickedness evidently abound more than formerlyj 
yet I can attribute it to nothing more than party factions, which 
have been occasioned by the introducing and settling among us 
these sort of teachers which we had no trouble with till a few 
years ago."^ 

Mr. Wetmore, in his report, for 1753, " acquaints the Society 
that his several congregations at Rye, White Plains^ North Cas- 
tle and Bedford, are large and flourishing, and the disposition of 
those that opposed the interest of the Church in those places, 
seems changed for the better. The new light preacher is re- 
moved from Bedford, and there are some hopes of the people 
uniting with North Castle towards supporting a minister in the 
holy orders of our Church, to officiate alternately to them; in 
the meantime, the Church hath suffered a loss by the death of 
Mr. Purdy, the Society's schoolmaster, who was a friend to reli- 
gion, and did many kind offices to the poor, as far as he was 
able. His corpse was attended to the church, on Ash- Wednes- 
day, by a great concourse of people of all persuasions, to whom 
Mr. Wetmore preached a sermon adapted to that day, and to 
the melancholy occasion." Mr. Wetmore also mentions the loss 
of another Worthy communicant, of exemplary piety and virtue, 
praying God to fill the breach made in his flock, by the loss of 
two such worthy members.'' Mr. Purdy was succeeded in his 
office of schoolmaster for the Parish, by Mr. Timothy Wetmore, 
eldest son of the Rector, the appointment having beeti made by 
the Society, on the recommendation of the inhabitants of Rye. 
The Rev. James Wetmore, by his letter of October 4th, 1756, 
acknowledges the receipt of the Society's instructions, and prom- 
ises his' best endeavours to observe and perform the contents of 
them ; in order to which, he had gone through all the parts of his 
extensive Parish, and preached in some adjacent places, where 
he had never been before, and where the people much wanted 

* New- York MSS. from Archives at Fultiain, vol. ii, p. '242. (Hawks'.) 

«• Printed Abstracts of Veil. Prop. Soc., from I6th Feb., 1753, to 15th Feb., 1754. 


and seemed very desirous of further instruction. Mr. Wetmore 
liath furnished his son, the Society's schoolmaster at Rye, with 
some proper sermons, and sends him on Sundays to read pray- 
ers, and officiate to them, which gives such good satisfaction, 
and affords such promismg hopes of promoting christian know- 
ledge among them, that young Mr. Wetmore continues the la- 
bour with great pleasure. "a 

The Abstracts of the Society's proceedings for 1759, say :— 
" The Rev. Mr. Wetmore, the Society's missionary, at Rye, in 
the Colony of New- York, has the pleasure of acquainting the 
Society by his letter, dated April 7th, 1759, that a very worthy 
person, a native of England, but now hving in New- York, has 
put into his hands £600 of that currency, of which he reserves 
to himself the interest during his life, and haih left by his will 
£400 more to be added to it after his death, to purchase a con- 
venient glebe for the use of the Society's missionary at Rye, 
for ever ; and he hath likewise intrusted several other charita- 
ble legacies to the care of the Society, besides the remainder of 
his estates for those good purposes for which the Society is in- 
corporated, and Mr. Wetmore makes not the least doubt of this 
good gentleman's perseverance m this resolution, he having given 
him leave to communicate thus much to the Society, and being 
always extraordinarily careful in the religious education of his 
family ; wherefore, the Society have returned their hearty 
thanks to this most worthy benefactor, for the £600 already 
given, and for his kind intentions of his other benefactions by his 
last will, with the assurance that they will most religiously ob- 
serve his directions concerning them, and to the utmost of their 
power fulfill the same."'' 

In a letter of April 7th, 1759, Mr. Wetmore acquaints the 
Society, "That a very worthy person, a native of England, (St. 
George Talbot, Esq.,) but now being in New- York, had put into 
his hands £600 currency, of which he reserves to himself the 

• Soc. Abstracts from 20th Feb., 1756, to 18th Feb., 1757, 
t Printed Abstracts of the Ven. Prop. Soc. for 1759. 


interest during life, and hath left by his will £400 more to be 
added after his death, to purchase a convenient glebe, and other 
liberal legacies."^- 

The Rev. James Wetmore, finished his earthly course, and 
fell asleep in the Lord, on Thursday, May 15th, 1760, having 
been nearly thirty-four years minister of this Parish. " The last 
scene of his life was such as aflbrded the most pleasing pros- 
pect of the real Christian's ho;-e. His views were clear, his love 
was strong, and his joy unspeakable and full of glory." His re- 
mains repose in the old I'arish burial ground, on the north-west 
side of Blind brook. A plain monumental tablet marks the spot 
and bears the following inscription : — 


to the Memory of 


the late, 

Worthy, learned and faithful Minister of the 

Parish of Rye, for above 30 years. 

Who having strenuously defended the Church with his pen 

and adorned it by Kis Life and Doctrine, 

at length being seized of the small pox. 

Departed this Life, May 15, 1760. 

jEtatis, 65. 

Cujus Memoriae sit in 

Benedictione sempiterna. 

The subjoined notice of his death appeared in the New- York 
Mercury, for May 29th, 1760. " On the 13th, of the small pox, 
in the 65th year of his age, the Rev. Mr. James Wetmore, Rec- 
tor of Rye, very much lamented. This worthy clergyman was 
blessed with an extensive understanding, which he improved by 
a due application to the most important studies. He was well 
versed in various parts of useful learning, and had a thorough 
knowledge of our happy constitution, both in Church and State, 

» Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Society.— Mr. Wetmore's death is mentioned 
in the Society's Abstracts for 1761, where the following character is given of him 
by the Rev. Mr. Winslow ; " ^le was a gentleman of extensive usefulness, and a 
father and exemplary pastor to the clergy in those parts." 


of which he was a staunch friend and an able advocate.^ In the 
important discharge of his ministerial office he was zealous, con. 
stant, and unwearied ; and though he observed with grief, the 
great decay of true Christianity and genmne_piety, (which he 
often heartily lamented to his friends,) yet he persevered warmly 
In the defence of the former, and in recommending the latter, 
both by precept and example. His church has lost a faithful 
pastor, his wife and family, an affectionate husband and a tender 
parent, and the publick, a worthy and useful member. Bur, — 
" Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord." 

"I have often heard some aged persons (says the Rev. 
Andrew Fowler) who recollected Mr. Wetmore, speak of him 
with great veneration, as a good man and a sound divine.N He 
was not the eloquent orator, nor the fascinating speaker ;•> but he 

* The following is a list of his writings, as far as known, viz: — 
1. Two Printed Letters in Answer to theGLuaKers, 1730. 

3. Printed Dialogues in Answer to the same, 1732. 

3. A Defence of Waterland's Discourse on Regeneration, 1744. 

4. A Vindication of the Professors of the Church of England, in Connecticut, 
in reply to Mr. flobart's Sermon in Favor of Presbyterian Ordination and a Re- 
joinder to Mr. Hobart's Serious Address, 1747. 

5. The Englishman Directed, 1748. 

6. Appendix, &c., to Rev. J. Beach's " Calm and Dispassionate Vindication of 
the professors of the Church of England," 1749. 

* '' It is reported of Mr. Wetmore, that being in the city of New- York on a visit, 
he was invited by the Rector of Trinity Church, Dr. Ogilvie, to preach for him; 
but no sooner was the sermon over, than a particular friend of the rector, asked 
him, privately, how he could invite that oM /—Z into his pulpit ■? "Why," said 
the Rector, " did you not like him ?" His friend replied, " No : I never heard u, 
more stnpid discourse in my life." When the Rector came home, he desired Mr. 
Wetmore to lend him the sermon he had preached that day and promised to return 
it when he should see him again. Mr. Wetmore readily complied with his re- 
quest, and loaned him the discourse ; and not long after, the Rector thinking his 
friend had forgotten it, took it to church, where he happened to be as usual, and 
the Rector preached it instead of his own. His friend was pleased with the ser- 
mon, and told him after church, that he had outshone himself, and that his dis- 
course was the best he had ever heard in his life. The Rector replied that he felt 
highly gratified to think that he was well pleased with the sermon ; but added, ij 
was none of his own ; it was the very one which the Old P~l, as you called him, 
at the time, delivered in my pulpit. " Well," said he to this Rector's friend, '* if 
he preaches such sermons as that, I will never object to his preaching in your 
pulpit again." So apt are people to condemn a clergyman for what they them- 
selves do not understand."— Fowler's MSS. Biog. of the Ckrgy, vol. ii., p. 548. 


was the ralional and evangelical divine, and few clergymen in 
his day wrote better. When a little work, entitled, " The Eng- 
lishman Directed in the Choice of his Religion," was republish- 
ed in the city of New- York, he wrote a preface or introduction 
to it, which was considered to be very good. He also wrote and 
printed several dialogues in answer to the Quakers, and in de- 
fence of the doctrine and discipline of the Church of England. 
One of his pamphlets 1 have in my possession, which appears 
well calculated for the purpose it was intended ; and I see not 
how the Q,uakers could answer it in a rational and spiritual 
manner. I believe the Christian Church could never boast of 
better men, take them as a body, than the Society's missionaries 
to this country. They chose their profession from a pure love 
to religion and the cause of Christ, not from the love of money 
or the praise of men. They sought for no honour but that which 
cometh alone from God, and an approving conscience. Like their 
beloved Master, they were despised and rejected, and their reli- 
gion was everywhere spoken against and villified. As the Apos- 
tles were a spectacle to men and angels, so were these men, and 
if they suffered not as martyrs, it was because the civil authority 
protected them.''^^ 

Mr. Wetmore left issue by his wife Anna, who died on the 
2Sth of February, 1771, two sons, Timothy, for several years 
the Society's school-master at Rye, and a person of considerable 
influence in the county, who, after the close of the Revolutionary 
War, retired to New Brunswick, resided at St. John's, and held 
numerous situations of honor and trust. Thomas, the son of 
Timothy, also removed to New Brunswick, where he was ap- 
pointed Attorney General, and died in 1^28. "^ James, second son 
of the Rev. James Wetmore, was also the Society's schoolmas- 

• Fowler's MSS. Biog., of the Clergy, vol. ii, p. 212. 

>> Robert G. Wetmore, of New- York, eldest sod of Timothy, also became a res- 
ident of New Brunswick, and abandoning the profession of the law, to which he 
was educated, devoted himself to the study of divinity, and was ordained a clergy- 
man of the Episcopal Church. He died in 1803, in Savannah, Geo., at the seat of 
the Hon. Joseph Clay." — See Sabine's American Loyalists. 


ter, at Rye, for a short time, and died in Nova Scotia, leaving 
several sons, one of these was the late Ezrahiah Wetmore, who 
died on the 7th of February, 1838, aged 81. Elizabeth, vi^idow 
of the latter, is still living at the advanced age of 93. The Rev. 
James Wetmore left also four daughters, Alethea, wife of the 
Rev. Joseph Lamson; Anna, wife of Gilbert Brundage;a. Charity, 
wife of Joseph Purdy, son of Samuel, the Society's school- 
master, from whom descend the Purdy's of Rye; and Esther, 
who married first, David Brown, and secondly, Jesse Hunt, Esq., 
high sheriff' of this county, in IZbO. 

"In the name op God, Amen. This sixth day of August, in the year of our 
Lord, 1759, 1, James Wetmore, of Rye, in the County of Westchester, and Prov- 
ince of New- York, Clerk, being of sound mind and memory ; but calling to 
mind the uncertainty of human life, and that 'tis appointed for man, once to die, 
and after that, the judgement ; do make, and ordain, and appoint this, my last will 
and testament, in manner following : That is to say : First of all, I bequeath my 
Soul to God whj gave it, hoping in his mercy, for everlasting life, through the 
alone merits of my blessed Redeemer ; and my body to the earth, to be buiied in 
a christianlike manner, at the discretion of my executors hereinafter named, in 
an assured expectation of its being raised up again at the last day by the Almigh- 
ty power of my Redeemer, to a state of greater glory and perfection, to remain 
forever ; and as to the small portion of my worldly estate, with which it has 
pleased God to bless me, I will, bequeath, and dispose of the same in manner fol. 
lowing, viz: — Imprimis: I give and bequeath unto my loving wife, Anna Wet- 
more, instead of a legal dowry, the use and emolument of all that land, orchard, 
meadow, and pasture, which Samuel Lane sold to Raphael Jacobs, lying in the 
town of Rye, with the house thereon, and all appurtenances thereto- belonging, 
and also that pasture lot adjoining thereto, which formerly belonged to Peter 
Brown, on the east side of the road leading to Harrison's purchase, to the sole 
use of my said wife and her assigns, during the term of her natural life ; also, 
one equal half of linnen, bedding, and other household furniture, and the privi- 
ledge of what firewood she shall have occasion of for her own use ; also, three 
cows and one horse. Item, I give, devise, and bequeath to my loving son, James 
Wetmore, the priviledge of the shop, and dam upon Blind brook, for accommo- 
dating a fulling mill, with the utensils belonging to said mill ; also, the wood and 
pasture lott above the first stone fence, to extend from Abraham Brundige's land, 
south-westerly, half the width of my land bought of Joseph Haight, and from the 
stone fence that runs across my land near Brundige's house, north-westerly to the 
next fence that now runs across my land, together with a priviledge to cart and 

Mother of Gilbert Brundage, the father of the present Mrs. Buckley, of Rye., 


drive cattle thereto, from the bridge to the fulling mill, to him, his heirs, and as- 
signs forever. Item, I give and bequeath to my loving son, Timothy, that house, 
barn, and improvements, bought of Mr. Jacobs, lying in the town of Rye, with 
all the land on the west side of the road which formerly belonged to Peter Brown, 
and alao that part of my land bought of Joseph Haight, on the west sid.e of Blind 
brook, running from said brook, north--westerly to the stone fence that now runs 
cross my land, near Abraham Brundige's,aud to extend northerly to the laid I 
have sequestered for a glebe, which, at the upper end, by the stone fence, is to be 
half the width of ray lot, to him, my said son Timothy, his heirs and assigns for- 
ever. Item, I give and bequeath unto my loving daughter, Alelhea, wife of the 
Rev. Joseph Lamson, £10, to be paid by my executors in one year after my de- 
cease. Item, I give, devise, and bequeath to my loving daughter, Anne, wife ot 
Gilbert Brundige, so much of my land at Bullock's meadow, as will be included 
by a line bearing the same course wiih the line between said Gilbert Brundige's 
land and that part of my farm he adjoins to, to begin at the south-east corner of 
said Gilbert Brundige's lot, bought of Henry Strang, to run cross meadow and 
woods, the course before specified, unto the land of William Haight, comprising 
that part of my farm that is north of said line, unto my said daughter Anne 
Brundige, her heirs and as^signs forever; also, XIO, to be paid by my executors 
unto my said daughter within a year after my decease. Item, I give and bequeath 
unto my loving daughter. Charity, wife of Josiah PurJy, £30, to be paid by my 
executors in one year after my decease. Item, I will, devise, and bequeath unto 
my loving daughter, Esther Wetmore, the reversion of all that Jiouse, orchard, 
meadow, and past'ir», which was formerly Samuel Lane's, and that pasture lot 
which did belong to Peter Brown, eastward of the road that leads to Harrison's 
purchase, with all the priviledges and appurtenances thereto belonging, after the 
decease of my wife, to whom I have given the use for life, the reversion and re- 
mainder to my said daughter, Esther Wetmore, to her heirs and assigns forever. 
I also give and bequeath unto my loving daughter, Esther, one equal half part of 
all my linnen, bedding, and other household furniture, the same to be equally di- 
vided between my wife and said daughter. All the residae and remainder of my 
estate, real and personal, after the payment of above legacies and all my just 
debts, I will, devise, and bequeath unto my two loving sons, James Wetmore and 
Timothy Wetmore, to each, in severalty, to be equally divided between them, af- 
ter the sale of so much as shall be necessary for payment of my just debts and 
legacies, unto them, their heirs and assigns forever ; and I do hereby nominate and 
appoint my said loving sons, James and Timothy, to be executors of this, my 
lasl will and testament, disannulling all former wills by me made, or executors 
by me nominated, and do confirm^ this, contained in these two pages, alone to be 
my last will and testament. In witness whereof, I have hereunto affixed my name 
' And s 6 3 1 


• Surrogate's office, N. Y., Lib. ixiv. 125, 126. This will was proved 10th 
June, 1760. 


Signed, sealed, pronounced and declared to be his last will and testament, in 
disposing mind and memory, in presence of Hachaliah Brown, Roger Park, Jr., 
Benjamin Brown, Jr." 

The Society's Abstracts for 1760, say that — " the Missions of 
Westchester and New Rochelle are both within the large and 
populous county of Westchester, as is also the Mission of Rye, 
to which the worthy and learned Mr. Wetmore was appointed 
Missionary in the year 1727 ; but there is come lately an ac- 
count of his dekth, to the inexpressible concern, not only of his 
own, but of the neighbouring congregations of our Church in 
those parts, and more especially and particularly of those Mis- 
sionaries, who esteemed themselves happy in his friendship and 
good counsel, and his loss will be endeavoured to be repaired in 
the best manner in which it may be done."''- 

At a Vestry meeting held in Rye, on the 9th of February, 
1762, " it was agreed to allow the executors of the Rev. James 
Wetmore, our late minister, the interest of what is due from the 
Parish to the estate of the said James Wetmore. Allowed to 
Timothy Wetmore, on account of his father's salary of £20." 

Nearly six months after Mr. Wetmore's decease. Dr. Johnson 
addressed the Secretary of the Venerable Society as follows : — 


■ [extract.] 

King^s College, New - York, Nov. 25th, 1760. 

"I wish (Mr. Camp) may be appointed at Rye, where we 
lament the death of good Mr. Wetmore, of the small pox, and a 
good successor is much wanted, as well as at New Rochelle and 
Westchester, especially the latter, for which, perhaps, Mr. Milner 
may do well, or one Mr. Davis, a hopeful youth, who is going 
in the spring."i» 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Society, for 1760. 

t New-York MSS. from Archives at f ulham, vol. ii., p. 282. (Hawks',) 


Mr. Barclay writing to the Secretary, from New-York, Dec. 
10, 1760, observes—" Tiiat Westchester and Rye continue still 
vacant ; religion is at the lowest ebb in that county, and unless 
some zealous and discrete clergyman be appointed to those mis- 
sions, the very term of it will soon disappear. As Westchester 
is a wide extended county, three missionaries can find more 
than sufficient employment, and I know of no place where they 
can be more serviceable, provided they have the interest of 
religion at heart."* 

The foUowmg extract occurs in a letter from Mr. Timothy 
Wetmore, to the same : — 

Rye, May 6th, 1761. 
Rev. Sie, 

"It is now, I think, six or eight mon-ths since we have been 
favoured with a sermon, or had either of the sacraments admin- 
istered in this Parish by a minister of the- Church. The Parish 
being in this destitute condition, I have presumed, at the request 
of the people, to read service every Lord's day, and upon other 
convenient occasions, which appears to have a tendency, by the 
blessing of God, to keep up a spirit of religion, and as I have a 
singleness to the glory of God and the good and comfort of my 
fellow creatures, I hope it may tend to the furtherance of the glori- 
ous designs of the Venerable Society. The people are constant 
in their attendance, decent in their deportment, and the temper 
of many of the Presbyterian congregation is such, (who have no 
minister) that I am much inclined to think, if a popular man is 
settled in this Parish, they will not call another preacher, but 
many of them may be brought into the Church. 

The constitution of this Parish is such, that the minister must 
be called by the Vestry and inducted by the Governour. The 
Vestry are chosen by all sects in the Parish, which is thirty miles 

• New- York, MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii., p. 282 (Hawks'.)—" The 
Society have informed the Vestry (of Rye) that as soon as they shall make appli- 
cation for a minister, and enter into proper engagements to contribute towards lii& 
support, they intend to appoint a missionary." — Society Abstracts, 1761. 


in length. Mr. Thomas, who is one of the representatives in 
this county, and who, in Governour DeLancey's time, being 
favoured with all the administration of all offices in the country, 
civil and military, by the help of which, he has procured him- 
self a large interest in the county, especially in the distani and 
new settlements, which abound with a set of people governed 
more by vinality than by anything else. This gentleman, 
though one of the Society's missionaries' sons, is so negligent and 
indifferent towards religion (in imitation of some of our great 
men) that it has been a steady method with him for years, not 
to attend publick worship, perhaps, more than once or twice in a 
year, whose example has been mischievous; This man is not 
only one of our Vestry, (though very little esteemed by the true 
friends of the Church,) but has procured that the majority of the 
Vestry are men that will be governed by him ; several of the 
Vestry are not of the Church, and not one of them a communi- 
cant in the Church ; accordingly, the Church are not at all con- 
sulted with regard to a successor. It is, therefore, a mere 
chance will be pleased in this place, which will really be, if pos- 
sible, a more melancholy in this Parish than others, from the 
peculiar circumstance of it. As our Governour depends, from year 
to year, upon the Assembly for his living, &c., and we have not 
so fully hopes of relief there, I have thought fit to give the 
Venerable Society a hint of these things, which they may pos- , 
sibly improve to the good of the Church. 

Reverend Sir, &c., 

Timothy Wetmore."^ 

In answer to this letter the Venerable Society expressed their 
readiness to send fL missionary to Rye, if necessary, and did 
so, by appointing the Rev. Mr. Palmer, in 1762. From the 
following communication, however, it seems that the Vestry 
in accordance with the Act of Assembly, had already called the 
Rev. Ebenezer Punderson, of New Haven. 

New- York MSS. from Archives at Falham, vol. ii, pp. 286, 387. (Hawks'.) 



Rye, October 5ih, 1762. 

Rev. Sir, "' 

" As we are informed that the Vestry that have preceeded us 
since the decease of our late worthy minister, the Rev. Mr. Wet- 
more, have omitted writing to the Venerable Society, which we 
are afraid may be thought a neglect proceeding from a spirit of 
ingratitude, and may have a tendency to give that Venerable 
Body a disadvantageous opinion of the Parish. 

We think it our duty to represent to the Society, that the 
former Vestry did give a call or invitation to two gentlemen, who 
refused to accept it, and that it seems likely that they omitted 
writing, expecting from time to time, some gentleman might be 
procured to recommend to the Society for a missionary m this 
Parish. But, however their conduct has been, we are well as- 
sured, that the people of this Church have a most grateful sense 
of the goodness of the Venerable Society to this Parish. 

We, therefore, in behalf of the Parish of Rye, humbly present 
to that Venerable Board our sincere and hearty thanks for 
their great expense in promoting the religion of the blessed 
Jesus in this Parish, and earnestly desire a continuance of their 
favours, although we blush, yet it is a pleasing blush, to hear the 
Society (by you to Mr. Timothy Wetmore, dated January 4th, 
17b2,) express their readiness to appoint a missionary here, be- 
fore we have made application. 

We have, at length, given the Rev. Mr. Ebenezer Punderson, 
of New Haven, an invitation to be our pastor, which he has ac- 
cepted, and as the Parish are well united in him, we have good 
reason to hope he may be very serviceable ; and I hope that his 
request to the Society to be removed here, will meet with a 
favourable acceptance. As to a title, we observe t-> the Society, 
that by a law of the province, a minister properly inducted into 
the Parish, is entitled to £50 currency. That we have petition- 
ed His Excellency, Mr. Monckton, our Governour, to induct Mr. 
Punderson, and we have no reason to doubt he will comply with 


onr request, as every thing that can be reqinred, on the part of 
the Parish, is done. We have also a parsonage house and lot, 
which Mr. Punderson has seen and expressed his satisfaction 
with. We have only to add our thanks to the Venerable Society, 
and beg leave to subscribe ourselves, 
Your most obedient 

, and humble servants, 

Er.isHA BuDD, Samuel Purdy, 
Churchwardens, and others."^ 

Dr. Johnson, writing to the Secretary, May 10th, 1763, says: — 
" Mr. Punderson was indeed much urged by that people to Rye, 
who have, by law, a right to choose their incumbent, but upon 
my urging the irregularity of it, wilhcut the Society's appoint- 
ment, they desisted, and he did not move and only visited 
them now and then. But as things were so unhappily embar- 
rassed by the appointment of Mr. Palmer, then I saw there was 
no way to accommodate the difficulty bnt by advising an ex- 
change between him and Mr. Palmer, who was also desirous of 
it, and I did not doubt but the Society would readily come into 
it. If I presumed too far in giving that advice, I humbly ask 
pardon, but as things are gone so far it will certainly be ex- 
tremely detrimental to the interest of religion, in both those 
places, if they are not permitted to exchange. I do, therefore, 
humbly beg, for once, that the Venerable Board will allow Mr. 
Punderson to go on and settle at Rye, and appoint Mr. 
Palmer, at New Haven, who have lately sent their address for 

Mr. Palmer" thus addresses the Secretary in relation to this 
affair : — 

' New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulhatn, vol. ii., p. 291. (Hawks'.) 
•> Oonn. MSS., from Archives at Fulham, p. 447. (Hawks'.) 
« The Rev. Solomon Palmer was a dissenting teacher, at Cornwall, Conn. In 
1754. he conformed and went to England for holy orders. He died at his mission 
of Litchfield, Nov. 1st, 1771, and was interred the Sunday, folio wing.— See Conn. 
MSS. from Archives at Fulham, p. 628. (Hawks'.) 


Litchjield, Conn.. June 8th, 1763. ■ 

Rev. Sir, 
" I wrote the Society my most hearty and unfeigned thanks 
for their appointment of me at Rye, where I would gladly have 
gone had I not been intercepted by the Rev. Mr. Punderson's 
being there before that designation was known or expected ; 
however, I should have made them a visit and offered myself to 
be chosen by them, had they not taken a seasonable precaution 
to prevent it, by writing and sending me a letter of the follow- 
ing contents, wliich I received in less than a week, after yours 
of the 6th of November last came to hand, which gave me the 
first notice of my appointment to that mission." 

-Rye, February 21st, 1763. 
Rev. Sir, ' 

"We, the justices, churchwardens and vestrymen of the Parish 
of Rye, having greatly at heart the preservation of our happy 
union, that subsists in our church, presume, Sir, that you, a 
preacher of the gospel of peace, will highly concur with us in 
opmion of the absolute necessity of guarding against every 
event that threatens to impede its continuance. Ever since 
the decease of the Rev. Mr. Wetmore, our late worthy pastor, 
an unhappy spirit of discord about a successor to that oHice, 
very unfortunately prevailed among us, till the coming of the 
Rev. Mr. Punderson, in September last, when, by his unwearied 
endeavours and successful preaching in the several parts of his 
Parish, it pleased God to reunite -the minds of the people in Mr. 
Punderson, and we did then, with one general voice, give Mr. 
Punderson an invitation to be our pastor, and he, to our great 
satisfaction, favoured us with his acceptance of it, and in con. 
sequence whereof, a petition was immediately drawn and lodged 
in the hands of the Honourable Daniel Horsmander, Esq., in 
New-York, to be presented at a proper time, by him and the 


Rev. Dr. Barclay, to his Excellency the Governour, to induct 
the Rev'. Mr. Punderson into our Church, and on the 5th of Oc- 
tober last, the Vestry, attended by a number of parishioners, 
"wrote a letter to the Honourable Society, acquainting them with 
their proceedings, and requested their consent to Mr. Punder- 
son's establishment among us, and which was transmitted to 
the Rev. Dr. Johnson, of New- York, to be forwarded by the 
first conveyance, under cover of the Dr's. letter of recommenda- 
tion, on this occasion, to the Society, so that both the Dr's. and 
Vestry's letters have doubtl(,^ss long ere now, reached the Socie- 
ty's hands, and we have the greatest reason to expect, from the 
known pious interest of that Venerable Body, an agreeable an- 
swer to our request. Mr. Punderson, who is now here, and has 
once more favoured us with many visits, wherein he has happi- 
ly revived no inconsiderable spirit of religion among us, and in 
consequence thereof has gained our greatest esteem ; and in- 
deed, it now visibly appears that he is actually sealed in the 
hearts of the people in general, who, with great discontent now 
lament our misfortune, (excuse the expression) of your appoint- 
ment for this Parish, before the Dr.'s and Vestry's letters could 
meet the Society's hand, and on which occasion, a cloud of dis- 
cord does already threaten our peace in the Church; and we 
firmly believe that a disappointment of having Mr. Punderson 
for our minister, would prove very fatal to her. Thus, sir, we 
have considered well our duty and our representations of this Par- 
ish, giving you a faithful information of our proceedings since 
Mr. Punderson's first coming here, and also our own, as well as 
the parishioners sentiments in regard to your appointment, which 
■we freely communicate to you, on no other motive than an ear- 
nest desire of the parishioners in general, that neither the con- 
tinuance of our happy reunion in Mr. Punderson, nor his estab- 
lishment among us inay be impeded on your application to Dr. 
Johnson and other gentlemen of the clergy, who in general, 
very well know how matters stand here. We presume you'll 
be convinced to your satisfaction, that we speak the real senti- 
ments of the Parish in general, as they are also our own, without 
the least tincture of prejudice or any other motive than the preser- 


vaiion of peace and harmonj' in the Church, and also his res- 
toration from his mueh reduced situation ; and he assured, if 
things were circumstanced now as they were before Mr. Pua- 
derson's coming here, we should receive you cheerfully with 
open arms, agreeable to your character, and with the respect 
that is justly due to the Venerable Society's appointment. We 
remain, most respectfully. 

Rev. Sir, your very humble servants, 

Andrew Merritt, ; churchwarden, 
Ebenezer Kniffen. \ 

and several others." 

At the same time I received the above, came to hand the fol- 
lowing one : — ■ 

New Haven, February 25th, 1763. 

Dear Brother, 
"Your letter for Dr. Johnson of the 22d of January, which 
came not to hand until Wednesday evening last. I am inform- 
ed the Society have appointed you to succeed the Rev. Mr. 
Wetmore, deceased, at Rye ; (not having received the united re- 
quests of the people there, the Doctor's and myself, for my re- 
moval to that place) as this news was altogether unexpected to 
us all, it. seems not a little to disconnect matters, for had I 
known of your writing to the Venerable Society for that Parish, 
I should never have consented to their desires of becoming 
minister. However, the Doctor gives it as his opinion to the 
Vestry at Rye, and also in his letter to me, the best method of 
preserving peace and unity in the Church, is for you to succeed 
me here, and for me to remove to Rye, and he cannot but think 
you will give satisfaction here. I have with this, forwarded a 
letter from the representatives of that Parish, which they com- 
mitted to my care, as the likeliest method of a direct convey- 
ance of it, for it is the Doctor's desire that the affair may be 
settled as soon as possible. - I am, your affectionate brother, 

Ebenezer Punderson."* 

* Conn. MSS. from Archives at Fulham, p. 452. (Hawks'.) 




Mr. Wetmore's successor, was the son of Thomas Punderson, 
of New Haven, where he was born in the year 1704. His 
grandfather, John, was the only son of John Punderson, who 
emigrated from Yorkshire to New England in 1637, and was 
one of the "seven pillars" who formed the first Congregational 
Society at New Haven. a Mr. Punderson was educated at Yale 
College, where he graduated in 1726. He also received the de- 
gree of Master of Arts from King's College in New- York, in 
1753. Studying theology in the dissenting way, he was in" 
stalled pastor over the Second Congregational Society at Groton, 
December 25th, 1729.'' In 1732, he came into the Episcopal 
Church, and in April, 1734, crossed the Atlantic to be ordained. « 
On his return, he reorganized a church at the village of Poque- 
tannuck. North Groton, 1738, which has ever since existed, 
though it has always been small, and has never been able to 
sustain a pastor of its own, but has principally relied on Nor" 
wich for ministerial supply. Mr. Punderson was, for some 
years, an itmerant missionary of the Society, for the Propaga- 
tion of the Gospel, and preached at Groton, Hebron, and other 
places adjacent, from 1740 to 1750. He was the first regular 

' John Punderson sailed from England on the JJ5th of July, 1637, in company 
with John Davenport and others. He died 1 Ith February, 1680. His only son, 
John, was born in 1643, and died in 1729. The name originally was Punchardon. 
The arms of Punderson are : — ar. a fesse within a bordure gu. charged with eight 
escallops of the first. Crest — a unicorn's head, erased, gu., bezautee and armed or. 

!■ Trumbull's Hist, of Conn., vol. ii. p. 530. 

' Mr. .Seabury writing to the Sec. from New London, March 30th, 1734, says: — 
" Mr. Punderson, who is going to England, about five years ago was called to 
preach in a Presbyterian or Independent way at Groton, near New London, where 
he even received ordination, but falling under doubts and scruples concerning their 
form of ordination and method of Church government, and at the same time ac- 
quainting himself with the Church of England, he found himself obliged upon true 
and regular conviction to embrace her communion, and thereupon he laid down his 
ministry, in which he was settled to good advantage." — Conn. MSS. from Archives 
at Fulham, p. 189. (Hawks'.) 


cfficiating clergyman at Norwich, upon the erection of their 
chi:roh in 1750. 

The Venerable Society's Abstracts for the year ending 1753, 
say:— "The Rev. Mr. Punderson, the Society's itinerant mis- 
sionary in Connecticut, having petitioned the Society to be set- 
tled a missionary, with only a part of his salary, (which is £70 
per annum) to the members of the Church of England in New 
Haven, the place of his nativity, (where a new ('hurch is built, 
to which Mr. Punderson gave the greatest part of the timber,) 
and to those of the neighbouring towHS of Guilford and Bran- 
ford ; the Society, out of regard to the advanced years of Mr. 
Punderson, and to his past good services, aud to the great trou- 
bles he has met with from some oppressive persons in Coiniect- 
icut, have granted his request,, and have appointed him their 
missionary to the three towns of New Haven, Guilford, and 
Bratiford, with a salary of fifty pounds per annum ; and de- 
sired him to recommend sbme proper young person, educated 
in one of the colleges there, to succeed him in the remaining 
part of his itinerant mission." Mr. Punderson was presented 
to the Governor for induction, in the following manner : — 


" To the Honourable Cadwallader Golden, Esq., hi,s Maj»sty's Lieuten- 
ant Governour, aud Commander in Chief of the Province of New- 
York, and the Territories depending thereon, in America . 
The Churchwardens and Vestrymen of the Parish of Rye, including the districts 
or precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck, and Bedford, in the County of Westchester, in 
the Province of New-York, the true and undoubted patrons of the said Parish, with- 
in your Honour's government ; in all reverence and obedience to your Honour, due 
and suitable, send greeting, in our Lord God everlasting, and certifye that to the said 
Parish of Rye, including the districts or precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck, and Bed- 
ford, now being vacant by the natural death of James Wetmore, the last incum- 
bent of the same, and to our presentation of full right belonging, we have called our 
beloved in Christ, Ebeuezer Punderson, Clerk, to otiiciate in the said Parish church of 
Rye, called Grace Church ; and him, the said Ebeuezer Punderson, sends by these 
presents to your Honour, present, humbly praying that you would vouchsafe him to 
the said church and Parish of Rye, including the districts or precincts aforesaid, to 
admit, institute, and cause to be inducted, with all its rights, members, and appurte- 


nances, and that you will, with favour and effect, do and fulfill all and singular, 

other things which iu this behalf are proper and fitting for yo* Honour. to do. 

In testimony whereof, we, the Chuj-chwardens and Vestrymen aforesaid, have to 

these presents put our hands and seals, this day of November, in the year of our 

Lord, one thousand seven hundred and sixty-three. 

Ebenezer Kniffen, > ^7 I J 

J Lhurchwardens, 
Andrew Merrit. S 

and seven Vestrymen."* 


" I, Cauwallader Golden, Esquire, his Majesty's Lieutenant Governour, aud 
Commander in Chiei of the Province of New- York, aud the Territories depending 
thereon in America, do admit you, Ebenezer Punderson, Clerk, to be Rector of the 
Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church, and of the Parish of Rye, 
including the several districts or precincts of Rye, Mamaroueck, am! Bedford, in the 
County of Westchester, within the said Province. 

Given under my hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, at 
Fort George, in the City of New- York, the seventeenth day of November, iu the 
year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and sixty-three. 


" I, Cabwallader Colden, Esquire, his Majesty's Lieutenant Governour and 
Commander jn Chief of the Province of New-York, and the Territories depending 
thereon, in America, do institute you, Ebenezer Punderson, Clerk, Rector of the 
Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church, and of the Parish of Rye 
including the several districts or precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck, and Bedford, in the 
County of Westchester, in the said Province, to have the care of the souls of the 
parishioners of the said Parish ; and take your cure and mine. 

Given under my hand aud the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, at 
Fort George, in the City of New- York, the seventeenth day of November, in the 
year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and sixty-three. 


" The Honourable Cadwallader Colden, Esquire, his Majesty's Lieutenant Gover- 

' Copied from the original document iu the possession of John C. Jay, Esq., Se- 
nior Warden of the Parish. 
>> Ibid. 


iiour and Commander in Chief of the Province of New-York, and the Territories de- 
pending thereon in America. To all and singular, Rectors and Parish Ministers 
whatsoever, in the Province of Nevr-York, or to Andrew Merrit and Ebeiiezer Kuif- 
feu, the present Churchwardens of the Parish of Rye, in tho County of Westches- 
ter, and to the Vestrymen of the said Parish, and to each and every of you, greet- 
ijigi—Whereas, I have admitted our beloved in Christ, Ebenezer Punderson, Clerk, 
to the Rectory of the Parish Church at Rye, commonly called Grace Church, and 
of the Parish of Rye, including the several districts or precincts of Rye, Mamaro- 
neck, and Bedford, in the county of Westchester within this government, to which " 
the said Ebenezer Punderson was presented unto me by the Churchwardens and 
Vestjymen of the said Parish, the true and undoubted patrons of the said Parish, va- 
cant, as is say'd by the natural death of James Wetmore, the last incumbent there, 
on or about the nineteenth day of May, one thousand seven hundred and sixly; 
and him, the said Ebenezer Punderson, I have instituted into the Rectory of the 
said Parish Church and Parish, with all their rights, members, and appurtenances, 
observing the laws and canons of right, in that behalf required and to be observed. 
To you therefore, jointly and severally, I do commit, and firmly injoining, do com- 
mand each and every of you, that in due manner, him, the said Ebenezer Punder- 
son, or his lawful! Proctor, in his name and for him, into the real, actual, aud corpo- 
ral possession of the Rectory of the said Parish Church and Parish, including the 
districts or precincts aforesaid, and of all their rights and appurtenances, whatsoever, 
you induct, or cause to be inducted, and him so inducted, you do defend : aud of 
wliat you shall have done in the premises thereof, you do duely certify unto me or 
other competent judge, in that behalf, when thereunto you shall be duely required. 
Given under my hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New-York, at 
Fort George, in the City of New-York, the seventeenth day of November, in the 
year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and sixty-three."* 



" I, John Milner, Rector of the Parish of Westchester, in the County of West- 
chester and Province of New-York, do hereby certifye, that by virtue of a warrant 
hereunto annexed, from the Honourable Cadwallader Golden, Esquire, his Majesty's 
Lieutenant Governour aud Commander in Chief of the Province of New-York, 
aforesaid, and the Territories depending thereon, in America ; I have this day in- 
ducted the Rev. Ebenezer Punderson, into the real, actual, and corporal possession 
of ihe Rectory of the Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church, an^ 
of the Parish of Rye, including the several districts or precincts of Rye, Mama- 
roneck, and Bedford, in the County of Westchester aforesaid, with all their rights, 
members, and appurtenances, the 21st day of November, Anno Domini, 1763. 

' Rec. of Commissions at Albany, fol. v., 274-5. — The original documents are in 
the possession of John C. Jay, Esq. 


The induction of the Rev. Ebenezer Punderson being executed, the above cer- 
tificate was signed, in consequence thereof, by the Rev. John Milner, in the 
presence of ns, who subscribe our names as witnesses thereunto. 

JOHN MILNER, Hector of St. Peter's Church, Westchester, 
and twenty-one others.'' 

" I, Ebenezer Punderson, do here declare my unfeigned assent and consent to ali 
and everything contained and prescribed in and by ye Book entitled the Book of 
Common Prayer, and Administration of ye Sacraments ; and ye Rites and Cere, 
monies of ye Church, according to the use of the Church of England ; together 
with ye Psalter or Psalms of David, pointed as Ihey are to be sung or said in 
Churches, and the form or manner of making, ordaining, and consecrating Bish- 
ops, Priests, and Deacons.'' 

" Upon the 4th day of December, 1763, the above mentioned Ebenezer Punder- 
son, after divine service was began, and before it was ended, read distinctly the 
thirty-nme Articles of Religion, and declared his unfeigned assent and coDsent 
to them; and also made the above declaration. 

Witness, Hachauah Brown, Timothy Wetmore."" 

The following extract is from Mr. Punderson's first report to 
the Secretary : — 



Rye, November I2th, 1762. 

Rev. Sir, 
"I am now entered upon the thirtieth year in the service of 
the Venerable Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, <fcc., 
and notwithstanding I have laboured under many infirmities, 

» Copied from the original documents in the possession of John C. Jay, Es-j. 
" The ancient mode of induction was as follows : — The person who executed the 
induction, took the individual to be inducted by the hand, laid it on the key of 
the Church, in the door, and pronounced these words, viz : — ' By virtue of this 
warrant, I induct you into the real, actual, and corporal possession of the Parish 
Church of Rye, commonly called G'^ace Church, and of the Parish of Rye, in- 
cluding the several Districts or Precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck, and Bedford, in 
the County of Westchester, within this Province of New- York, with all their 
rights, members, and appurtenances' — Then he opened the door of the Church, 
and put the person in possession thereof, who usually tolled the Church bell — 


yet have by divine goodness been enabled to perform divine 
service every Sunday, save one, during the long term ; and have 
rid, and preached more than two sermons in three weeks, ye 
whole of the lime. Upwards of nine years have I been in the 
Society's service, at New Haven, Guilford, and Brandford, where 
I have six churches, and have more than one hundred and sixty 
communicants, and by the blessing of heaven upon my zealous 
and painful endeavours to serve the Church of God which he 
has purchased with his own blood ; I have almost solely 
raised up eleven churches in Connecticut, and from the force 
and fraud of the powers of darkness and evil, and wicked men, 
who are their instruments, have suffered more than probably 
almost any man now alive ; but blessed be God whose property 
it is to bring light out of darkness, good out of evil, and order 
out of confusion, has made all these things work together for 
my best good, the increase of my faith, and patience and fer- 
vent zeal to promote the salvation of immortal souls. =1 

Rev. Sir, &c., 

Ebenezer Punderson.'' 

At a meeting of the Vestry held at the house of Abraham 
Theall, on the 1st of February, 1763, the Vestry "allowed to 
the Rev. Ebenezer Punderson, for his service in the Church, 
from the 1st day of July, 1762, to the 1st day of February, 

1763, the sum of £25 ; also, for his salary to January 1st,. 

1764, £50." 

Upon the 9th of April, 1763, "The Justices and Vestry voted 

then the inductor certified the induction, which he endorsed on the warrant, and 
also all those who were present usually set their hands to it as witnesses. The 
person thus inducted, had to, within two months afterward, read the thirty-nine 
Articles, and declare his unfeigned assent and consent to them, after the Com- 
mon Prayer was began, and before it was ended, and likewise within the said 
two months, he had upon Sunday, to read the whole service for that day, out of 
the Book of Common Prayer, and deilver his assent to it in that very Church to 
which he was i..iducted, in the words as above. 
* New- York MSS. from Archives at Pulham, vol. ii. pp. 311, 313. (Hawks'.) 


the sum of two hundred and forty-five pounds on the several 
districts of the Parish, in manner following, viz : — 

Rye, - - - - £68 18 7 

Manor' of Scarsdale, - 25 4 6 

Bedford, - - - 50 18 6 

Mamaroueck, - 18 10 

White Playns, - 24 9 

North Cast-le, - 56 19 5" 

£245 00 

At this meeting, " The Vestry considered that there was not 
money in the Churchwardens hands to pay the Rev. Mr. Pun- 
derson the twenty-five pounds that was voated, for services done 
in the Church by said Mr. Punderson, from July the 1st, 1762, 
to January 1st, 1763.— There then appeared Mr. Peter Jay, 
John Thomas, Esq., Mr. Benjamin Griffen, Elisha Budd, Esq., 
and Mr. William Sutton, and advanced five pounds a piece, ma- 
king the twenty-five pound. Ordered that the aforesaid be paid 
as soon as it shall be collected by the constables, and paid to 
said persons above, by the Churchwardens.''^ 

The Society's Abstracts for 1763, say :— " The Rev. Mr. Pun- 
derson, the Society's missionaiy at Rye, in his letter dated Oc- 
tober 10th, 1763, writes, since his removal to Rye, in May last, 
besides preaching two-thirds of the Sundays at Rye, and the 
other third at White Plains, North Castle and Bedford, (the first, 
seven, and the other, twenty miles from Rye Church) he has 
been twice to Crumpond and once to Croton, each thirty miles 
from Rye. In his occasional visits, and since his residence at 
Rye, he has christened nineteen adults, and ninety-two children, 
and he has added several to our communion, and is preparing 
many more. Upon Mr. Punderson's representation of a great 
want of Prayer Books, a large number have been sent him to 
be distributed among his poor parishioners."'' 

' Church Records of Rye. 

b Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. from 18th of Feb., 1763, to 17th of Feb., 



Thus actively engaged in the glorious work of extending the 
Redeemer's kingdom, the life of this faithful and virtuous sol- 
dier of the Cross glided peacefully along, until the 22d day of 
September, 1764, when his Master called him home to the rest that 
remaineth for the people of God. His remains are interred he- 
side those of Wetmore, in the Episcopal burying ground at Rye, 
where a neat monument is erected, with the following inscrip- 
tion :-^ 

Sacred to the Memory of the 
Rev'^. Ebenezer Punderson, Late 
Missionary to the Rev'"'. Society for 
Propagating the Gospel in foreign 
Parts, who died 22d SeP., A. D. 1764, 
Being 60 Year? of Age. 
With Pure Religion Was his Spirit fraught, 
Practis'd Himself what he to others Taught. 

The following notice of his death appeared in the " New- 
York Post Boy," for October 4th, 1764 :— 

" We hear from Rye, that the Rev. Mr. Ebenezer Punderson, 
late Minister of that place, missionary from the Honourable So- 
ciety for the Propagation of the Gospel, &c., died there on Sat- 
urday, the 22d ult., after a few days illness, much lamented.''^ 

Mr. Punderson left two sons, Ebenezer, the eldest, graduated 
at Yale College in 1755, and settled at Preston, Connecticut, 
where he died, A. D., 1809.'' His son, Ebenezer, died in 1846- 
7, leaving two sons, Francis, of Hudson, Columbia County, 
N. Y., and the Rev. Ephraim Punderson, of Western New- 
York ; besides two daughters, Mary and Elizabeth. Cyrus 

* The Boston Gazette for the 15th of October, 1764, says : — "that he died at 
Rye, on Sunday, the 22d alt.," but this must be a mistake, as the 22d occurred 
on a Saturday. — See Cresswell's Secular Diary, published in N. Y., A. D., 1849. 

k The following obituary notice appeared in the Churchman's Mag., for 1809. 
" Died at Preston, in Connecticut, on Thursday, the 6th of April last, after about 
a fortnight's illness of the epidemic, typhus fever, Mr. Ebenezer Punderson, Mer- 
chant, eldest son of the Rev. Ebenezer Punderson, deceased, who was formerly 
a missionary for the Ven. Soc. for the Propagation of the Gospel, in Connecticut, 
afterwards at New Haven, and finally at Rye." 


Nonf Z; *''V"'^°^^;°" °f the Rev. Ebenezer, was born It 
North Groton, Conn, April 17th, 1737, educated at Yale and 
was admitted Master of Arts of Kings College, N. Y., in I758 
He entered the medical profession, and married Catharine et 
dest daughter of Dr. George Muirson, (only son of the Ret 
George Mmrson, second Rector of this Parish,) by whom he left 
issue SIX children, viz :-Elizabeth, George Muirson, Cyrus Mi- 
ner, Thomas, Anna, and Gloriana. The latter, who was born 
August 9th, 1778, and married Capt. Jedediah Hart, is still liv" 

ZV\fT'^f ^'- ^^'"'^^^^""di^d at New-York, January 
10th, L 89, and was buried beside his wife, under Caroline 
Church, Setauket, Long Islaud.a 

Upon the I9th day of December, 1764, Grace Church Rye 
received the following charter from King George the Third ■— 

" George the Third, by) the grace of God, of Great Britain, Prance and Ire- 
land, King, Defender of the Faith, and so forth, To all to whom these presents 
shall come, greeting: Whereas oar loving subjects, Peter Jay, Elisha Eudd 
Christopher Isinghart, Timothy Wetmore, Caleb Pardy, Joshua Purdy John 
Giiion, Joseph Pardy, Gilbert Willet, John Carhart, Thomas Sawyer, Gilbert 
Brandige, John Thomas, William Sutton, Anthony Miller and John Adee, in- 
habitants of the Parish of Rye, in the County of Westchester, in our province of 
New- York, in communion of the Church of England as by law established ; by 
their humble petition presented on the sixteenth day of November last past, to 'our 
trusty and well beloved Cadwallader Golden, Esquire, our Lieutenant Governour 
and Commander in chief of our Province of New- York and the territories de- 
pending thereon in America, in Council, did set forth that the inhabitants of (he 
said Parish of Rye, in communion of the Church of England as by law established, 
have by voluntary contributions erected and finished a decent and convenient 
church in the town of Rye, in the said Parish, for the celebration of divine service 
according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England, but that from a 
want of some persons legally authorized to superintend the same and manage the 
affairs and interests •thereof, the said church is greatly decayed, and the petitioners 
discouraged from contributing to the repair thereof, least the money given for 
that purpose may be mis-applied, and that dn that account also, charitable and well 
disposed people are discouraged in their design of establishing proper funds for 
the future support of the said church and the better maintenance of the ministry, 

Kindly furnished by the Rev. F. M. Noll, Rector of Setauket. 


and therefore humbly prayed in behalf of themselves and the rest of the inhabitants 
of the said Parish in communion of the Church of England as by law established, 
our letters patent incorporating them and the rector and inhabitants of ihe said 
Parish in communion of the Church of England as by law established, for the 
time being, a body corporate and politick, with such rights, privileges, and immu- 
nities, as should appear proper and expedient to answer the purposes aforesaid. 
Now, We being willing to encourage the pious intentions of our said loving sub- 
jects and to grant, this their reasonable request. Know Ye, that of our espe- 
cial grace, certain knowledge and mere motion, we have ordained, given, grant- 
ed and declared, and by these presents for us, our heirs, and successors, do ordain, 
give, grant and declare, that they the said petitioners and the rest of Ihe inhabi- 
tants of the said Parish of Rye in communion oi the Church of England as by 
law established, and their successors the inhabitants of the said Parish of Rye in 
communion of the Church of England as by law eslablished, with the rector of 
the said Parish of Rye for the time being, for ever, shall forever hereafter be one 
body corporate and politick in deed, fact and name, by the name, stile and title of 
the rector and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye, in communion of the Church of 
England as by law established, and them and their successors by the same name, 
we do by these presents, for us our heirs and successors really and fully make ; 
erect, create and constitute one body politick and corporate in deed, fact and name 
for ever, and will, give, grant, and ordain, that they and their successors, the rec- 
tor and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye in communion of the Church of England 
as by law established, by the same name shall and may have perpetual succes- 
sion, and shall and may be capable in law to sue and be sued, implead and be 
impleaded, answer and be answered unto, defend and be defended in all courts 
and elsewhere, in all manner of actions, suits, complaints, pleas, causes, matters 
and demands whatsoever, as fully and amply as any other our liege subjects of 
our said Province of New- York may or can sue or be sued, implead or be im- 
pleaded, defend or be defended, by any lawful ways or means whatsoever, and 
that they and their successors by the same name shall be for ever hereafter capa- 
ble and able in the law to purchase, take, hold, receive, and enjoy any mes- 
suages, tenements, houses, and real estate whatsoever, in fee simple, for term of 
life or lives, or in any other manner howsoever, for the use of the said church, 
and also any goods, chattels, or personal estate whatsoever ; Provided always, that 
the clear yearly value of the said real estate (exclusive of the said church and the 
ground whereon the same is built and the cemetery belonging to the same) dolh 
not at any time exceed the sum of five hundred pounds current money of our said 
province, and that they and their successors by the same 'name shall have full 
power and authority to give, grant, sell, lease and dispose of Ihe same real estate 
for life or lives, or years, or for ever, under certain yearly rents, and all goods, 
chattels and personal estate whatsoever, at their will and pleasure, and that it shall 
and may be lawful for them and their successors to have and use a common seal, 
and our will and pleasure further is, and we do hereby for us, our heirs and suc- 
cessors, ordain and appoint that there shall be for ever hereafter belonging to the 
said church, one rector of the Church of England as by law established, duly 
qualified for the cure of souls, two churchwardens and eight vestrymen, who shall 


conduct and manas-ethe affairs andbasiness of the said church and corporation 
la manner as hereafter is declared and appointed, and for the more immediate 
carrying into execution our royal will and pleasure herein, we do hereby assign, 
constitute and appoint Peter Jay and Elisha Budd to be present churchwardens, 
and John Thomas, Joshua Purdy, Christopher Isinghart, William Sutton, John 
Adee, Caleb Purdy, Anthony Miller and Timothy Wetmore, to be the present ves- 
trymen of the said church, who shall hold, possess, and enjoy their said respective 
ofiices until Tuesday in Easter week, which shall come and- be in the year of our 
Lord one thousand, seven hundred and sixty-six, and for the keeping up the succes- 
sion in the said offices, our royal will and pleasure is, and we do hereby establish, 
direct and require, that on the said Tuesday in Easter week in the said year of our 
Lord one thousand, seven hundred and sixty-six, and yearly and every year 
thereafter for ever, on Tuesday in Easter week in every year, the rector and 
inhabitants of the Parish of Rye in communion of the Church of England as by 
law established, shall meet at the said church, and there by the majority of voices 
of such of them as shall so meet, elect and choose two of their members to be 
churchwardens, and eight others of their members to be vestrymen of the said 
church for the ensuing year, which said churchwardens and vestrymen so elected 
and chosen, shall immediately enter upon their respective offices, and hold, exer- 
cise and enjoy the same respectively from the time of such elections for and du- 
ring the space of one year, and until other fit persons shall be elected and chosen 
in their respective places, and in case the churchwardens or vestrymen, or either 
of them, by these presents named and appointed or which shall be hereafter elect- 
ed and chosen by virtue of these presents, shall die or remove from the said Par- 
ish of Rye before the time of their respective appointed services shall be expired, 
or refuse or neglect to act in the office for which he or they is or are herein nomi- 
nated and appointed, or whereuuto he or they shall or may be so elected and 
chosen, then our royal will and pleasure is, and we do hereby direct, ordain and 
require the rector and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye in communion as aforesaid, 
for the time being to meet at the said church, and choose other or others of their 
members in the place and stead of him or them so dying, removing or refusing to 
act within thirty days next after such contingency, and in this case for the more 
due and orderly conducting the said elections and to prevent any undue proceedings 
therein, we do hereby give full power and autliority to, and ordain and require that 
the rector and the said churchwardens of the said church for the time being, or any 
two of them, shall appoint the time for such election and elections, and that the rec- 
tor of said church, or in his absence, one of the said churchwardens for the time being, 
shall give public notice thereof by publishing the same at the said church, imme- 
diately after divine service on the Sunday next proceeding the day appointed for such 
election, hereby giving and granting that such person or persons as shall be so 
chosen from time to time by the rector and inhabitants of the said Parish of Rye in 
communion as aforesaid, or the majority of such of them as shall in such case meet 
in manner hereby directed, shall have, hold, exercise and enjoy such tlie office or 
offices to which he or they shall be so elected and chosen from the time of such elec- 
iion, until the Tuesday in Easter week thence next ensuing, and until other or others 


be legally chosen in his or their place or stead, as fully and amply as the person or 
persons in whose place he or they shall be chosen might or could have done by vir- 
tue of these presents ; and we do hereby will and direct that this method shall for ever 
hereafter be used for the filling up all vacancies that shall happen in either the said 
offices between the annual elections above directed ; and our royal will and pleasure 
further is, and we do hereby for us, our heirs and successors, give and grant that as 
well the churchwardens and vestrymen in these presents nominated and appointed, 
as such as shall from time to time be hereafter elected and chosen as is herein directed, 
shall have and they are hereby invested with full power and authority to execute their 
several and respective offices in as full and ample manner as any churchwardens or 
vestrymen in that part of our kingdom of Great Britain called England, or in this 
our province of New- York, can or lawfully may execute their said respective offices ; 
and further our royal will and pleasure is, and we do by these presents, for us, our 
heirs and successors, give, grant, ordain and appoint, that the rector and the said 
churchwardens of the said church for the time being, or any two of them, shall and 
may from time to time, as occasion shall require, summon and call together, at such 
day and place as they shall thhik proper, the said rector, churchwardens and vestry- 
men for the time being, to meet in vestry, giving them at the least, one day's notice 
thereof, apd we hereby require them to meet accordingly : and we do hereby give, 
grant and ordain, that the said rector, and one of the said churchwardens for the time 
being at least, together with the majority of the said vestrymen of the said church for 
the time being, being met in vestry as above directed, shall forever hereafter have, 
and they are hereby invested with full power and authority by a majority of their 
voices, to do and execute in the name of the rector and inhabitants of the Parish of 
Rye in communion of the Church of England as by law established, all and singular, 
the powers and authorities hereinbefore given and granted to the said rector and in- 
habitants of the_ Parish of Rye in communion of the Church of England as by law 
established, any wise touching or relating to such lands, messuages and tenements, 
real and personal estate whatsoever, as they the said rector and inhabitants of the 
Parish of Rye in communion as aforesaid, shall or may acquire for the uso of the said 
church, and also in like manner to order, direct, manage and transact the general in- 
terest, business and affairs of our said corporation, and also shall have full power and 
authority in like manner to make and ordain such rules, orders and ordinances as 
they shall judge convenient for the good government and discipline of the members 
of the said church, provided such rules, orders and ordinances be not repugnant to the 
laws of that part of our kingdom of Great Britain called England, or of this our pro- 
vince of New-York, but as near as may be agreeable thereto, and that the same be 
fairly entered in a book or books to be kept for that purpose ; and also in like man- 
ner to appoint the form of the common seal hereinbefore granted, and the same to 
alter, break, and new make at their discretion ; and also in like manner to appoint 
such officer or officers as they shall stand in need of; always provided, that the rector 
of the said church for the time being shall have the sole power of nominating and ap- 
pointing the clerk to assist him in performing divine service, as also the sexton, any 
thing hereinbefore contained to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding ; which 


clerk and sexton shall hold and enjoy their respective offices during the will and 
pleasure of the rector of the said church for the time being. And whereas by the 
death of the late minister of the said church the same is now in avoidance, our royal 
will and pleasure is, that in this case, and also in case of every future avoidance of 
the said church, either by the death of the rector thereof or otherwise, that the pow- 
ers and authorities hereby vested in the rector, churchwardens and vestrymen, in 
vestry met as above mentioned, shall, until the said church he legally supplied with 
another incumbent, vest in and be executed by the said churchwardens of the said 
church for the time being ; provided always, they have the concurrence and consent 
of the major number of the whole vestrymen of the said church appointed by these 
presents, or oliosen by virtue hereof, for the time being, in every thing they shall in 
such case do by virtue hereof. And further, we do by these presents, for us, onr heirs 
and successors, give and grant unto the rector and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye in 
communion of the Church of England as by law established, and their successors 
for ever, that this our present grant shall be deemed, adjudged and construed in all 
cases most favorably and for the best benefit and advantage of the said rector and in- 
habitants of the Parish of Rye in communion of the Church of England as by law 
established, and that this our present grant being entered on record as is hereinafter 
particularly expressed, shall be good and effectual in the law to all intents, construc- 
tions and purposes whatsoever, against us, our heirs and successors, according to our 
true intent and meaning herein before declared, notwithstanding the not reciting or 
raisreciting, not naming or misnaming of any of the aforesaid franchises, privileges, 
immunities, offices or other the premises, or any of them, and although no writ of ad 
quod damnum, or other writs, inquisitions or precepts hath or have been upon this 
account had, made, issued or prosecuted ; to have and to hold all and singular the 
privileges, liberties, advantages and immunities hereby granted or meant, mentioned 
or intended so to be, unto them the said rector and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye 
in communion of the Church of England as by law established, and to their succes- 
sors for ever. In testimony whereof, we have caused these our letters to be made 
patent, and the great seal of our said province to be hereunto affixed, and the same to 
be entered on record in our secretary's office in our city of New-York, in one of the 
books of patents there remaining. Witness, our trusty and well beloved Cadwallader 
Colden, Esquire, our Lieutenant Governour and Commander in chief of our Province 
of New- York, and territories thereon in America, at our Fort in our city of New- 
York, by and with the advice and consent of our Council for our said province, the 
nineteenth day of December, in the year of our Lord one thousand, seven hundred 
and sixty-four, and of our reign the fifth. First skin, line the fortieth, the words 
or with, and second skin, line the twenty- seventh, the word is are interlined. 


At a vestry meeting, for this Parish, on the 7th of May, 1765, 

Book of Commissions, Secretary of State's ofiice, Albany. 


it was "ordered that the churchwardens do take up on interest, 
thesumof twenty-five pounds to payoff the salary of the Rev. Mr. 
Punderson, deceased, in case his widow shall give security that 
it shall not be hereafter claimed by his executors or other per- 
sons as his estate." 

The following month the Society were favored with another 
letter from their faithful friend and schoolmaster at Rye ': — 



Rye, June \st, 1765. 

Rev. Sir, 

"The Venerable Society have, doubtless, long since heard that 
our Parish is again reduced to the melancholy state of being 
without a minister, exposed to the infection of schism, irreligion, 
profaneness, and deism, or rather atheism. Mr. Smith, some- 
thing of a popular dissenting preacher, ,is again introduced into 
Rye and the White Plains. I am sorry to say it, I think the 
appearances of religion, are not so favourable as they have here- 
tofore been, and though the necessity is so great, the neighbour- 
ing clergy are so attached to their proper missions, that we have 
not had, I think, the sacrament but once, and but two sermons 
preached in our Pari^sh, since the death of Mr. Punderson. 
This being the melancholy state of the Church, and many mani- 
festly verging towards an indifferency about public worship ; to 
prevent which, and the dreadful consequences thereof, and also 
to prevent as far as lay in my power, as many as possible from 
being habituated to the dissenting meeting, taverns, and sloth- 
fulness on the Lord's Day, vices to which many of our people 
are too much addicted, and which Mr. Punderson's successor 
might be obliged to struggle hard with before he would be able 
to master, as also that we may have an opportunity of publicly 
adoring our great Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifyer ; I have 
presumed again to enter the sacred desk and read prayers at 


Rye and the White Plains, and 'elsewhere, occasionally, and 
such sermons, as I think, are best calculated for these purposes, 
and to propagate the great doctrines and practice of Christians ; 
and I have the satisfaction to think that my weak endeavours 
are not without a blessing ; many profess to be pleased, and 
established and comforted thereby in the blessed hopes of the 

Upon the 2nd of June, 1765, the 


was licensed and appointed to the vacant mission of Rye. He 
•was the son of the Rev. Ephraim Avery, whose ancestors, 
originally seated at Wells, in Somersetshire, were among the 
early settlers of New Bngland.b His father was installed pas- 
tor of the Second Congregational Society, at Pomfret, Windham 
County, Conn., Sept. 4th, 1735, and died Oct. 20th, 1754.<= His 
mother, Deborah, in 1765 married the distinguished patriot, 
General Israel Putnam, who died in 1794; she died at his head- 
quarters, in the Highlands, in 1777, and was' interred in the 
family vault of the well known Col. Beverly Robinson. Mr. 
Avery was born in Pomfret, on the 13th of April, 1741,d and 
graduated at Yale, in 1761. Soon after he left college, he went 
into New Jersey and taught school there, at a place called 
Second River, in the township of Newark. « The Society's 

• Nev-York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii., pp. 392, 393. (Hawks'.) 
^ ■William Avery received a grant of land, at Ipswich, in 1638. John Avery, 

of Boston, died 31st of July, 1654. Christopher Avery was a selectman, of 
Gloucester, in 1646. The arms of Avery, of Wells, are :— gu. a chev. between 
three bezants. Great— two lions gambs, or, supporting a bezant. 
» Trumbull's History of Connecticut, vol. ii., p. 533. 

* " Ephraim Avery and Samuel Avery, sons of the Rev. Ephraim Avery, by 
Deborah his wife, were born April the 13th, 1741."— Extract from the Records 
of the town of Pomfret, Windham County, Conn. Ephraim and Samuel 
Avery, twin sons of the Rev. Ephraim Avery, were baptized at Pomfret, Sunday 
April 19th, 1741.— Record of the Ist Ecclesiastical Society of Pomfret. 

' Fowler's MSS., vol. iv., p. 726. - 


Abstracts for 1763, say : — " The Rev. Isaac Brown, the Society's 
missionary, at Newark, in his letters," dated October 6th, 1762, 
and April 6th, 1763, acquaints the Society that Mr. Avery, a 
young gentleman, graduated at Yale College, has taken care of 
the school at Second River, from Dec. 1st, 1761, and proposes 
to continue it upon the encouragement of the Society's bounty 
and some allowance from the inhabitants. The Society have in 
consequence of Mr. Brown's recommendation, appointed Mr. 
Avery schoolmaster at Second River, with the usual salary, and 
given him leave to draw for the same from Christmas, 1761."^ 
Whilst laboring here, he turned his attention to theology, in 
which he made good proficiency, and was considered a very 
promising young man. He then went to England for holy 
orders, and was ordained deacon and priest by Dr. Hinchman, 
Bishop of London.'' From the Society's Abstracts for 1765, we 
learn, that " Mr. Ephraim Avery, being well recommended to 
the Society, by the clergy in New Jersey, and others, and found 
worthy by the Lord Bishop of London, to be admitted into holy 
orders, is appointed to the vacant mission of Rye, to which he 
has since been inducted by the Governour."" 

At a meeting of the vestry of this Parish, held on the 24th day 
of August, 1765, "Mr. Jay presented a letter to the church- 
wardens and vestrymen from the Honourable Society, acquaint- 
ing them that the Society had appointed the Rev. Ephraim 
Avery, to be rector of the Parish Church of Rye. Upon reading 
the letter the vestry adjourned to meet at the house of Jotham 
Wright, on the 27th inst., at 2 o'clock, in the afternoon." 

" Pursuant to adjournment, there met and was present, this 27th 
of August, 1765, James Horton, Jr., Samuel Purdy, William 
Griffen, Robert Bloomer, Timothy Wetmore and Roger Parke, Jr. 
The Rev. Mr. Avery having relinquished all claim to the 
salary due from the Parish, since the death of the Rev. Mr. 

• Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. from Feb. 18, 1763 to Feb. 17, 1764. 

>■ Fowler's MSS. 

■= Printed abstra'cts of Ven. Prop. Soc. for 1765. 


Punderson, to this day, which he signifies by subscribing his 
hand hereunto ; the vestry gave him a call, and a presentation to 
the Hon. Cadwallader Golden, Esq., Lieut. Governour of the 
Province of New- York, to induct him accordingly."a 

OP RYE, &c. 

" I, Cadwallader Golden, Esa., His Majesty's Lieutenant Governour and 
Commander in Chief of the Province of New- York and the Territories depending 
thereon in America, Do admit you, Ephraim Avery, Clerk, to be Rector of the 
Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church, and of the Parish of 
Rye, including the several Districts or Precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck and Bed- 
ford, in the County of "Westchester, within the said Province. Given under my 
hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, at Port George, in 
the City of New- York, the 9th day of September, in the year of our Lord one 
thousand seven hundred and sixty-five. 



" I, Cadwalladek Colden, Esa., His Majesty's Lieutenant Governour and 
Commander in Chief of the Province of New- York and the Territories depend- 
ing thereon in America, Do Institute you, Ephraim Avery, Clerk, Rector of the 
Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church, and of the Parish of 
Rye, including the several Districts or Precincts of Rye, Mamaroneck and Bed- 
ford, in the County of Westchester, in the said Province, to have the care of the 
souls of the Parishioners of the said Parish, and. take your cure and mine. Given 
under my hand and the prerogative seal of the Province of New- York, at Fort 
George, the 9th day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven 
hundred and sixty-five. 



"The Honourable Cadwallader Colden, Esa., His Majesty's Lieutenant 

Church Records of Rye. 

Book of Commissions, Secretary of State's Gifice, Fo]. v, 297. 


Governour and Commander in Chief of the Province of New-York, and the Terri- 
tories depending thereon in America. To all and singular, Rectors and Parish Min- 
isters whatsoever in the Province of New- York, and to Peter Jay and Elisha Budd, 
the present Churchwardens of the Parish of Rye, in the County of Westchester, 
and to the Vestrymen of the said Parish and to each and every of you Greeting : 
Whereas, I have admitted our beloved jn Christ, Ephraim Avery, Clerk, to 
the Rectory of the Parish Church of Rye, commonly called Grace Church 
and of the Parish of Rye, including the several Districts or Precincts 
of Rye, Mamaroneck and Bedford, in the County of Westchester, within this 
Government, to which the said Ephraim Avery was presented unto me, by the 
Churchwardens and Vestrymen of the said Parish, the true and undoubted 
patrons of the said Parish, vacant by the natural death of Ebenezer Punderson, 
the last incumbent there; and him, the said Ephraim Avery, I have instituted into 
the Rectory of the said Parish Church and Parish, with all their rights, members 
and appurtenances observing the Liws and Canons of Plight in that behalf re- 
quired and to be observed. To you, therefore, jointly and severally I do commit 
and firmly enjoining, do command eacli and every of you, that in due manner 
him, the said Ephraim Avery, or his lawful proctor in his name, and for him, 
into the real, actual and corporal possession of the Rectory of the said Parish 
Church and Parish, including the Districts or Precincts aforesaid, and of all their 
rights and appurtenances whatsoever, you induct or cause to be inducted, and him 
so inducted you do defend ; and of wh^ityou shall have done in the premises 
thereof, you do duly certify unto me, or other competent judge in that behalf 
when thereunto you shall be duly required. Given under my hand and the pre- 
rogative seal of the province of New- York, at Fort George, in the City of New- 
York, the 9th day of 'September, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven 
hundred and sixty-five. 


Oa the 21st of January, 1766, the vestry of the Parish " al- 
lowed to the Rev. Ephraim Avery, for his service as rector of 
the Parish of Rye, from the 27th day of August last to the 1st of 
January, 1766, £16 13 4, added for three days 8s. 6d.; and rais- 
ed for the rector's salary, from January Isl, 1766 to January, 
1767, the sum of "£50;" also ordered, "That the Church- 
warden, Joshua Purdy, to pay unto the Rev. Mr. Avery, £17 
Is., from this dale, till paid on January, 1767." "At a vestry 
meeting held on the 18th day of March, 1766, the justices 
and vestry agreed to raise for the poor, (fee, for the present year. 

Book of Commissions, Secretary of State's Office, Pol. V. 297-8. 


£150, which was quoted in the following manner, viz. : 

Rye, - - - £81 13 9 

White Plains, - - 28 2 6 
Manor of Scarsdale, - 20 10 

Mamaroaeck, - ' - - 14 13 9 
Bedford, - 55 00 6 

North Castle, - - 68 15 

£268 15 0"a 

Extract of a letter from 



Rye, March 25th, 1766. 
Rev. Sir, 
" 1 have the pleasure to inform the Venerable Society, that the 
people of my Parish seem to be under very peaceable circum- 
stances, an entire harmony subsisting between them and myself, 
especially those who are professors of the. Church of England, 
and indeed, the other party are very quiet. It gives me a good 
deal of satisfaction to find my people, in general, much more 
calm with respect to the stamp, act than the most of others ; 'tis 
true, they esteem the act rather aggressive ; but to resist the 
higher powers in a rebellious manner they think not only un- 
lawful, but unchristian. In this Parish are at present about forty 
communicants, some of which have come to the holy ordinance 
since my residence among them, and many more, I believe, 
would soon join themselves, could their too scrupulous con- 
sciences, be fully satisfied in a few points, that now seem to be 
a bar in their way ; for which reason I would beg of the Ven- 
erable Society a few pious tracts to be distributed among them. •> 

• Church Records of Rye. 

"■ New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol, ii. (Hawks'.) 


In 1767, Mr. Avery received the degree of Master of Arts, 
from King's College, New- York, a literary honor which he 
richly deserved. 

Mr. John Rand succeeded Mr. Timothy Wetmore, as the 
Society's schoolmaster andcatechist for the Parish, in 1769. He 
must have removed, however, the same year, for tht>. name, of 
Mr. John Avery occurs on the Society's list, as schoolmaster at 
Rye, m 1770, with a salary of £10 per annum. In 1779, Mr. 
Avery left his school, being engaged in other employments, 
whereupon, Mr. James Wetmore, a brother of the former school- 
master, was appointed to the office. 

In 1772, Mr. Avery writes, " That peace and unanimity- 
subsists between him and his people. "^ 

The Society's Abstracts for the year 1773, say : — " two letters 
have been received from Mr. Avery, whose congregation at Rye, 
continues as usual, ten or twelve children are regularly in- 
structed by Mr. Wetmore, the schoolmaster. The church at 
North Castle which hath been some time building, is in a tolera- 
bly decent state. Mr. Avery's notitia stands thus : — hajitized 
ninety of white children and infants ; of adults, six ; of black 
infants, five ; marriages, fifteen ; burials, ten."^ 

In 1774, " Mr. Avery assures the Society that Mr. Wetmore 
carefully attends upon his school ; instructs ten or twelve ; four 
children upon the bounty. of the Society. He hath baptized 
thirty-seven white, and four black infants and four white adults ; 
married seven, and buried five."": 

"Soon after this the clergy of the Church of England fell 
upon troublous times, which tried to the utmost the firmness of 
men, and often excruciated the minds of the scrupulous and 
conscientious. TheRevoUitionary War broke out, threatening an 
utter disruption of the ties which had so long bound the colonies 
and the mother country together. The relations of the clergy 

* Printed Abstracts ofVeu. Prop. Soc, from Feb. Slst, 1772, to Feb. 19tli, 1773. 
>> Ibid from Feb. 19th, 1773, to Feb. ISth, 1774. 
" Ibid from Feb. 18th, 1774, to Feb. 17th, 1775. 

a:nd church op eye. 319 

with the latter, were perhaps of a more close and enduring 
character than those of almost any other class of men. They 
were for the most part employed and supported by the Society 
at home, they were nurtured in sentiments of loyalty, and they 
could not bring themselves to forsake at once, and forever, the 
ruler whom God in his providence had 'placed over them, and 
whom they had so long implored him to prosper and bless. 

Whatever may be politically our view of this great question, 
in which men equally good, so widely differed, we must at least 
respect the scruples which no worldly considerations could over- 
come, and which led to the sacrifice of home, comfort and 
wealth, for conscience' sake. With these qualifications, I trust 
that [ shall be open to no misconstruction, in the unvarnished 
narrative I am about to give." 

In a letter, dated October 31, 1776, " Mr. Inglis assures the So- 
ciety, that all their missionaries, without excepting one, in New 
Jersey, New- York, Connecticut, and so far as he could learn in 
the other New England colonies, had proved themselves faith- 
ful, loyal subjects in those trying times, and had to the utmost 
of their power opposed the spirit of disaffection which had in- 
volved this continent in the greatest calamities ; and although 
their joint endeavours could not prevent the rebellion, yet lor 
some time they had considerably checked it. Amidst all the suc- 
ceeding disorder and confusion, they went on steadily with their 
duty in their sermons; confining themselves to the doctrines of 
the gospel, without touching on politics, using their influence to 
allay political heats and cherish a spirit of loyalty among their 
people. This conduct, however harmless, gave great offence. 
They were every where threatened, often reviled with the most 
opprobious language and sometimes treated with brutal violence." 
He then goes on with an enumeration of the many instances of 
insult, outrage aad wrong, which had been inflicted on his 
brethren and friends ; and concludes his account with the re- 
mark, "that if every case of fhe kind could be faithfully collect- 
ed, it' is probable that the suff'erings of the American clergy 
might appear in many respects not inferior to those of the same 


order in the great rebellion of the last century, and that such a 
work would be no bad supplement to Walker's Sufferings 
OF THE Clergy." 

" Some (say the Society's Abstracts) were carried prisoners by 
armed mobs into distant provinces, and were detained in close 
confinement for several weeks. Some flung into jails for frivo- 
lous suspicions. Some obliged to fly the provinces, have been 
taken prisoners and brought back, and threatened to be tried 
for their lives, because they fled from dangers. Some have been 
pulled out of the reading desk, because they have prayed for 
the King, and that before Independency was declared. Others 
have been warned to appear at militia musters with their arms, 
have been fined for not appearing, and threatened with impris- 
onment. Others have had their houses plundered, and their 
desks broken open, under pretence of their containing treason' 
able papers. After the Declaration of Independence, the clergy 
were greatly embarrassed to officiate publicly, and not to pray for 
the King, according to the Liturgy, was against their duty and 
oath, as well as the dictates of their conscience ; and to use the 
prayers, would have drawn on them inevitable destruction. 
The only course which they could pursue, to avoid both evils, 
was to^ suspend the public exercise of their functions, and shut 
up their churches."^ Thiswasdonewithoutany concert, through- 
out the whole extent of the above mentioned provinces. The 
venerable Mr. Beach, of Newtown, in Connecticut, is alone to 
be excepted, who officiated as usual after Independency was de. 
clared ; and upon being warned of his danger, he said, with 
more firmness and spirit than prudence and discretion, that he 
would do his duty, and pray and preach for the King till they 
should cut out his tongue. It is a little remarkable, that not- 
withstanding his contumacy, he was never disturbed. ^ 

" The persecutions and privations to which the clergy were 

* Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 

"■ Hist, of Trinity Church, N. Y., by Dr. Berrian, p. 141. 


•exposed (says Dr. Hawkins) in the war, whether from the 
royalist or american armies, proved fatal to several of them. 
At, Rye, Mr. Avery was a principal sufferer. His horses were 
seized, his cattle driven off, and his property plundered. His 
death, fey some supposed to have been occasioned by these loss- 
es, happened soon afterwards."* 

One letter from Mr. Avery, dated 5th June, 1776, containeth 
nothing material ; having lost the use of his right hand, he was 
incapable of writing, and sent no account of the state of his 
Parish. " Mr. Wetmore hath -diligently attended his school, 
consisting, in the course of the year, of seventy-one scholars, 
whom he instructs to the satisfaction of their parents."'' 

The Society's Abstracts for 1776, say; — "By a private letter, 
since received from Mr. Inglis, it appears that Mr. Avery was 
murdered by the rebels^ in a most barbarous manner on the 3d 

• Hist. Not. of the Miss, of the Church of England, by Ernest Hawkins, B. D. 
» Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc., from 16th Feb., 1776, to 21st Feb., 

1777. The Abstracts for 1777, say ; — " Mr. Wetmore, the Society's schoolmaster 
■at Rye ; fj-om whom three letters have been received in the course of the year, 
acquaints the Ssciety that in October, 1776, he had sixty scholars, but was then 
obliged, to fly to N. Y., leaving his numerous family in the power of the rebels. 
From Mr. Wetmore's last letter, it appears that he had taken a school on L. I., 
and hath fifty scholars.'' 

• Printed Abstracts of Ten. Prop. Soc. from 16th Feb., 1776, to 31st Feb., 
1777. — Tradition, however, reports that Mr. Avery was murdered by one Harris, 
an Irish Jesuit, who at^ that period kept a private school, which for many years 
stood upon, or near the site now occupied by a carriage shed, directly opposite 
the Church, at Rye. It is said that frequent, discussions on religious topics ha5. 
taken place between them ; on these occasions, Mr. Avery was always observed 
to maintain his argument with great coolness and moderation, while his, antago- 
nist, who was naturally of a violent and hasty temper, would frequently betray 
the worst feelings. TJnder"the garb of liberty, the murderer waylaid, and shot 
his" innocent and de/enceZesi victiin; cut his throat, and dragged him into the 
.public highway; thus adding to his crime, a vile attempt to defame the fait 
t^ha^acter of a worthy and excellent minister. But amid the turmoil of civil war, 
the conscience-stricken murderer found no rest ; he wandered from place to place, 
entirely dependant on the charity of others, and finally removed into the State of 
Ohio. Not long afterward he was tried for a second murder, and condemned to 
expiate his crime on the gallows. According to an account of his execution, 
published in one of the Ohio papers of the day, on the bolts being drawn, the rope 


of last November, for refusing to pray for the Congress, his body 
having been shot through, his throat cut, and his body thrown 
into the public highway." 

The full particulars of this melancholy event are thus related 
by Mr. Seabury, afterwards Bishop of Connecticut, 


New- York, March 29th, 1777. 

Rev. Sir, 

" When I last wrote,. I neglected to inform th« Society of the' 
death of their missionary at Rye, the Rev. Mr. Avery. With re- 
gard to the circumstances of his unfortunate end, I can now only 
relate what has been commonly reported. 

When the King's army were about to leave the County of 
Westchester, the latter end of October last, one brigade under 
the command of General Agnew, pushed forward about two 
miles beyond Rye, in hopes of bringing a large detachment of 
the rebel army which lay there, to an engagement, but not being 
able to come up with them, they returned on a Sunday afternooa 
to join the Royal army near the White Plains. That evening, 
the rebels returned to Rye, and as Mr. Avery and many of the 
loyalists had shown particular marks of joy when the King's 
troops came there, they became very obnoxious to the rebels, 
who showed their resentment by plundering their houses, dri- 
ving off their cattle, taking away their grain, ajid imprisoning 
some of them. Among the rest, Mr. Avery was a sufferer, and 
lost his ■ cattle, horses, (fee. On Tuesday morning, he desired a 
maid servant to give the children their breakfast, and went out. 

broke, and the unfortunate man fell to the ground. While in this distressing situ- ' 
ation, he entreated the officers of justice to spare him a few moments, as he had 
something further to communicate ; when he solemnly declared that he first shot 
Mr. Avery, and then cut his throat." — Related on the testimony of Mrs. Wet- 
more and. other aged inhabitants of this Parish, who have heard their parents 
speak of Harris, and remember to have seen an account of his execution id the 
papers of the day. — Mditor. 


Sometime after, he was found, some say, under a fence, or in an ' 
out-house, with his throat cut, either dead, or just expiring." 
Many people are very confident that he was murdered by the 
rebels ; others suppose that his late repeated losses and disap- 
pointments, the insults and threats of the rebels, and the ab - 
sence of his best friends, who had the day before, gone off for 
fear of the rebels, drove him into a state of desperation too se- 
vere for his strength of mind. He had last spcing, a stroke of 
the palsy, which deprived him of the use of one hand, and af- 
fected his reason a good deal. He also about the same time lost 
his wife, a prudent and cheerful woman, which affected him so 
much, that when I attended at her funeral, I did not think it 
right to leave him suddenly, but tarried with him several days 
till he was more composed. I visited him again a fortnight af- 
ter, arid found him much better, and would have repeated my 
visits, but the times became too critical to admit of it. He has 
left five or six helpless orphans, I fear in great distress ; indeed 
I know not what is to become of them ; I have only heard that 
the rebels had humanity enough to permit them to be carried 
to Mr. Avery's friends at Norwalk, in Cohnecticut."'' 

From the above letter, it appears that Mr. Avery's death took 
place on Tuesday, November 5th, 1776. He had been rector of 
Rye nearly eleven years, and was the sixth minister who died 
incumbent of this Parish. His remains, with those of his wife, 
repose in the burying ground belonging to the Church, on the 
opposite side of Blind brook. 

" There the weary are at rest," 

The inscription on the tombstone of Mrs. Avery is as fol- 
I6ws : — 

* Mr. James Wetmore writing to the Secretary from New- York, January 10th , 
1777, says: — "Our unfortunate minister, Mr. Avery, was found dead near his 
house, the ' beginning of November last." — New-Yorlc MSS. from. Archives at 
Fulham, vol. ii. p. 609. (Hawks'.) 

» New- York MSS. from Archives at Fulham, vol. ii. 614. (Hawks'.) 



to the Memory of Mrs. Hannah, 

late Consort of 

the Rev. Ephraim Avery, 

who having lived greatly 

beloved, Died universally 

lamented, after six weeks 

excruciating pain on ye 13th 

Day of May, A. D. 1776 in ye 

39th year of her Age. 

Blessed are the dead 

who die in the- Lord. 

The Mission of Rye, (say the Society's Abstracts) being va- 
cated by the death of Mr. Avery, the 

who had been lately ordained by the Lord Bishop of London, 
as a missionary to Trinity Bay, Newfoundland,* was in the 
month of March, 1777, appointed missionary to Rye, with a 
salary of £40 per annum."'' He was the son of the Rev. Isaac 
Hunt, Rector of St. Michael's, in Bridgetown, Barbadoes, where 
he was born in 1752. On his father's side, his ancestors were 
Cavaliers, who fled from the tyranny of Cromwell, and settled 
in Barbadoes. For several generations, they were clergymen. 
He was intended for the same profession, but being sent to col- 
lege at Philadelphia, he there commenced, on the completion of 
his studies, as a lawyer, and married. He took the degree of 
Master of Arts, both in Philadelphia and New-York.'= It was, 
again curious, that the Revolution breaking out, the conserva- 
tive propensities of the family broke out so strong in him, as 
to cause him to flee for safety to England, as his ancestors had 
formerly fled from it. He had been carted through Philadel- 
phia by the infuriated mob, only escaping tarring and feather- 
ing by a friend taking the opportunity of overturning the tar 

■ He was licensed for Trinity Bay, on the 4th of March, 1777. 

' Printed Abstracts of Ven. Prop. Soc. 

-- He w as graduated A. M. at Kings College, (now Columbia) in 1773. 


barrel set ready ia the street, and being consigned to the prison, 
he escaped in the night by a bribe to the Iceepar.a 

In 1777, he was ordained deacon and priest by the Rt. Rev. 
Robert Lowth, D. D., Bishop of London, and in the month of 
March of that year, appointed missionary to Rye. Whether he 
ever visited his mission, we have no means of ascertaining ; prob- 
ably the troubles of the Revolution prevented his doing so. 
His name appears, however, on the Society's list of missiona- 
ries, until February 20th, 1778. 

"Mr. Hunt," says Howitt, " seems to have been one of those 
who are not made to succeed in the world. He did not obtain 
preferment, and fell into mucli distress. At one time he was a 
very popular preacher, and was invited by the Duke of Chan- 
dos, who had a seat near Southgate, to Become tutor to his ne- 
phew, Mr. Leigh. Here he occupied a house at Southgate, call- 
ed Eagle Hall; and here his son, the poet, was born, and was 
named after Mr. Leigh, his father's pupil. "i> His wife was Mary, 
daughter of Stephen Shewell. merchant, of Philadelphia, whose 
sister was the wife of Benjamin West."o 

The Rev. Isaac Hunt died in !S09, aged 57 years, and was 
buried in the church yaid in Bishopgate street, London. 

During the subsequent years, the Parish of Rye suffered con- 
siderably from the confusion that attended the Revolutionary 
War. The Church was burned, the glebe lands hired out on 
terms which produced but a small income, and the parishioners 

'■' The Revolution, (observes the late Right Rev. J. P. K. Hen- 

" Howitt's Homes of the Poets, and Aut.ibiography of Leigh Hunt. 

' Ibid. "Vol. ii. p. 399, 340. See Autobiography of Leigh Hunt, published in 

Sabine's Hist, of American Loyalists. 

^ The last meeting of the Ve!,try took place in tlie house of John Doughty, in 
Rye, April the 5lh, 1776, present— Lewis McDonald, Jun., and Gilbert Merritt, 
Ksq'rs., Justices, Joshua Purdy and Jamas Horton, Jun. Churchwardens, Gilbert 
Bloomer, Stephen Baxter, Israel Lyon, Gilbert Horton, Joseph Owens, John 
Haight, Joshua Hunt, and Zene Carpenter, Vestrymen. 


shaw) glorious as it was in its results upon our civil and politi- 
cal interests as a nation, was, for a time, most disastrous to the 
interests of our Church. After the storm of war had swept 
over our country, it was found to have left in its train, not only 
scepticism in religion and looseness of morals as a common ca- 
, lamity to our people, but as most of ihe clergy of our commu- 
nion were obliged to flee on account of their attachment to the. 
cause of a sovereign for whom they had been bound to pray, 
the Episcopalians were left with a few scattered flocks, wander- 
ing as sheep without a shepherd ; with churches deserted and 
altars desolate ; with only here and there a man of God who 
dared to put on the sacerdotal garments to lead their devotions 
and break to them the bread of life. 

Although Washington and Lee had fought our battles, though 
Duche made the first prayer in Congress, and White was its reg- 
ular chaplain, and though many other of the leading spirits 
who guided the Revolution, and laid the foundation of the Re 
public, were sincere Churchmen; yet in the view of the multi- 
tude. Monarchy and Episcopacy were inseperable, and such was 
the bitterness of opposition to the former, that the latter was 
scarcely allowed toleration. 

As there are some, in our day, weak or wicked enough to re- 
peat this worn out appeal to vulgar, political prejudices, it may 
Hot be amiss to notice, that Washington, Jefferson, Madison, 
Monroe, Jackson, Van Buren, Harrison, Tyler, and Taylor, 
among our Presidents ; Henry, Jay, Hamilton, Marshall, and 
others, among our departed revolutionary worthies, were atten- 
dants upon the services of our Church ; and Clay, Webster, 
Badger, Woodbury, Kent, Berrian, and others, among the most 
distinguished statesmen and jurists, the nation has ever known, 
became Churchmen as the result of patient inquiry and exami- 
nation. The late Rufus King, of New- York, on his death-bed, 
speaking of the great good effected by the Propagation Society, 
said; ' It is the brightest light shining in the candlestick of the 
Reformation.' It seems almost a marvel that the Church was 
saved from extinction. In the mercy of God, it was so saved ; and 
towards the close of the last century, in the consecration of three 


Bishops for the United States, we received as an independent 
nation, that boon which had been denied to the Colonies for 
more than one hundred and fifty years. Thus made an inde- 
pendent branch of the Church of Christ, and having organized 
an ecclesiastical union, under a Constitution and Canons closely 
resembling the fundamental laws of the Federal Government, 
our Church began to ' lengthen her cords, and strengthen her 
stakes.' The dominion of ignorance and bigotry over the pub- 
lic mind gradually subsided. The Church, freed from alliance 
with all human sovereigns, and acknowledging no king but 
Him ' whose 'kingdom is not of this world,' having struck its 
roots into the soil, and demonstrated its congeniality with our 
free institutions — took an attitude to demand notice, and chal- 
lenged an examination of her claims."* 

For six months, at the close of the Revolutionary War, Mr. 
Andrew Fowler read prayers and sermons in the parsonage 
every other Sunday, and collected the congregation here and at 
White Plains.^ 

Upon the 27th of April, 1785, a meeting of the congregation 
of the Episcopal Church of Rye, was called at the. house of 
Mrs. Tamar Haviljwid, when ihe follov/ing persons were cho- 
sen trustees to take charge of the temporalities of the Church, 
—John Thomas, Esq., William Miller, Esq,, Col. Gilbert Budd, 
Mr. Joshua Purdy, Mr. John Falconer, and Mr. Isaac Brown. 
William Miller, Esq., was chosen clerk. 

The same year, the trustees hired out the Church glebe, con- 

. * Discourse delivered in Grace Ckurch, Providence, on .the occasion of the 
Third Jubilee of -the Soc. for the Prop, of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, on the 
First Sunday after Trinity, June 22d, 1851, by X P. K.. Henshaw.-D. D., Rec- 
tor of said Church, and Bishop of Rhode Island. ' 

•> " At the close of the war, (says Mr. Fowler) I collected the congregation 
there and at the White Plains, where I read prayers also, every other Sunday^ 
Begaaa. at Rye the 1st Sunday in April, 1784, (4th of April,) and at White Plains 
the next Sunday, (lUh of April.) The Church was burnt bj the British in.the 
war.'"— Fowler's MSS. 


sisting of the lands called the old parsonage, the parsonage 
house, and the lands on the west side of Blind brook. 

The following year, the congregation received a letter from 
the Rev. Samuel Provoost, rector of Trinity Church, New- 
York, Abraham Beach, and Benjamin IMfoore, dated April ITth, 
1786, enclosing the journals of the convention of the Protestant 
Episcopal Church, held in Philadelphia, September, 1785. Upon 
the reception of this letter, a meeting of the congregation was 
called, which assembled at the house of Mrs. Haviland, in Rye, 
on the 5th of May, 1786. Mr. Joshua Purdy, (the last senioi 
warden of the Parish, prior to the Revolution) was unanimously 
elected pi>-esident of the meeting. " On motion, it was resolved . 
to take the sense of the congregation, whether they would com- 
ply with the request of the letter, and send delegates to meet in 
convention at St. Paul's Church, in New- York, upon the third 
Tuesday in May next. The sense being taken, it was unani- 
mously agreed to send delegates, whereupon, William Miller, 
and Alexander Hunt, Esq'rs., were chosen for that purpose." 

Upon the 5th of September, 1787, the 


was elected to the rectorship, the first since the close of the war. 
He was the son of Thomas Moore, and grandson of Colonel 
John Moore, of Whitehall, in the city of New- York, where he 
was born on the 2lst of August, 1762. After completing his- 
preparatory education, he studied medicine, and engaged in the 
practice of the healing art till July, 1787 ; at which period, a 
desire that he had for some time indulged of entering the sa- 
cred ministry, was gratified, by his receiving ordination from- 
the hands of Bishop Provoost, as deacon, on the I5th of July, 
and priest, on the 22d of October, 1787. He was admitted at 
Columbia College, M. A., in 1794, and D. D,, of Washington, 
now Trinity College, Hartford, in 1829. 

The following is a copy of the call given to the Rev. Richard 
C. Moore, September 5th, 1787 i — 


Rev. Sir, 

"We, the Trustees and Members of Grace Churcli, in the 
Parish of Rye, and County of Westchester, stimulated by mo- 
tives of sincere afi'ection for the advancement of true religion 
and piety, have raised a sufficient sum of money by subscrip- 
tion, to afford you a comfortable maintemance, and have thought 
proper to a,dopt this mode, by which to solicit your acceptance 
of the Rectorship of the said Church, formerly relying upon 
your integrity as a riiinister of that sacred gospel, through 
which we hope for the attainment of eternal joy and happiness, 
and duly sensible of the important duty required of us, we find 
ourselves inclined to submit the care of our spiritual concerns 
to you as shepherd of this jfiock, and sincerely hope that by 
lives of virtuous obedience to the. commands of the Bishop and 
shepherd of our souls, you will be enabled through divine as- 
sistance, to present us without spot or blemish, into the arms of 
the Master of our salvation. 

The amount of the salary which we have been enabled to 
raise, is £120 per year, which for your convenience we have 
engaged to pay at different periods. Believe us, Rev. Sir, with 
the most sincere wishes for your present and future happiness. 

Joshua Purdy, William Miller, 

Elisha Purdy, Thomas Haight. 


Peter Jay, Esq.,»' Alex. Hunt, John Thomas,i> 

Ben. Griffen, John Falconer, Samuel Purdy, 

Joseph Budd, Jona. Hunt, Isaac Purdy. 

Roger Purdy, Moses Purdy, Daniel Park, 

Jonathan Purdy, Joshua Secor, Jas. Wetmore,"^ 

* Son of Peter Jay, and great_ grandson of Pisrre Jay, the Huguenot. 
' Sheriff of Westchester County, and grandson of the Rev. John Thomas, one 
of the Ven. Soc. Missionaries. , 

« Second son of the Rev. James "Wetmore. 



Henrv Budd, Tamar Barker, Thomas Thomas. "'^ 

JosiAH Brown, John Puruy. 

" At a meeting of the members of Grace Chnvcli, in the Parish 
of Rye, on the Tuesday of Easter Week, being the 25th of 
March, 1788, and the day appointed by Charter'' for the elec- 
tion of two wardens, and eight vestrynien, to take into charge 
the temporalities of tli<? ,5 aid Church, the following pepsons were 
unanimously chosen : — 

Peter Jay, I ru i i 
-. „ { Churchwardens. 

Isaac Purdy. ) 

Joshua Purdy, Sen,, 1 f Thojias Thomas, 

Jesse Hunt, Ksq,, ^^ Rlijah Puruy, 

, T y Vestrymen. - ^ 

Andrew Lyon, Joshua fcRCOR, 

Thomas Brown, | Moses Fowler." 


During the period of Mr. Moore's incumbency, and owing 
principally to his unceasing exertion, tlie piesent church was 
erected in place of the old stone edifice. At a vestrv meeting 

' Major General Thomas Thomas, son of the Hon. John Thomas, a distin- 
guished officer of the Continental army, and a member of the Legislatue of ihe 
State of New- York. 

^ See the Charter of 1764. 


held in the month of March, 1788, it was determined by that 
body to erect a new church, and to place it upon the hill, on or 
near the place where the old ruins stood, at a cost of |5,500.a 
The following items are, taken from the vestry book :— " May, 
1788, for one day giting boards and puling down the old 
church, 5 shillings— To one day clearing rubbish from the old 
church, &c." It was designed at first to have erected a steeple in 
place of the present tower, as appears by an act of the vestry, 
dated Sept. 17th, 1791, " wherein it was ordered to remove the 
works projected for a steeple on the lop of the roof, at the west 
end." ^ 

Subsequently the pulpit and reading-desk were removed from 
the north wall of the church to the east end, and the southern 
door closed. 

Under Mr. Moore's animated exertions for the benefit of his 
cure, the languid hopes of the people began to revive, and the 
deranged state of the Parish resumed the appearance of order 
and prosperity, but as he continued his labours here but one 
year the people were again left destitute and very much dis- 

At a vestry meeting, held Friday, August the first, 1788, 
" The Rev. Mr. Moore laid before the house, the particular ad- 
vantages arising from a call, which he had received on the 17th 
inst. from Staten Island, in consequence of which, Mr. Jay re- 
quested him to leave his papers and to withdraw, in order to 
afford the wardens and vestry an opportunity to attentively con- 
sider the business, when after an hour spent hi deliberating 
upon the subject, Mr. Brown requested Mr. Moore to attend, at 
which time Mr. Jesse Hunt informed him, that the vestry was 
willing to give him a dismission, but at the same time requested 

» " Oii the 28th of March, 178S, it was resolved unanimously, that the Church be 
built of wood, that the length thereof be 50 feet, the width 38 feet, and the posts 20 
feet high. On the 16ih of April, 1788, it was determined by the Vestry to allow 
Mr. James Ford, carpenter, from New-York, the sum of £130 for erecting and en- 
closing the church without a steeple. At a subsequent meeting it was resolved to 
ottiit the gallery on the east, by which moans the church will be rendered lighter, and 
the altar more solemn and grand." 


him to continue until the expiration of the year, commencing 
on the 1st of Oct., '87— and ending the 1st of Oct.-, '88— which 
proposal Mr. Moore readily assented to.'^ 

The following notice of Mr. Moore's subsequent career, ap- 
peared in the Churchman for November, 1841 : — 

" His first spiritual charge was the Church in Rye, Westches-' 
ter. New- York ; at the expiration of two years he removed to 
Staten Island, where he resided twenty-one years and where his. 
faithful and zealous labours ■we;re most remarkably blessed in 
the conversion of sinners. In 1809 he was invited to the rec- 
torship of St. Stephen's Church, in the City of New-York, a 
small Parish, and presenting but few encouragements to useful- 
ness. So signally prospered, however, was his ministry, that 
when at the close of five years he left New- York to enter on the 
duties of his Episcopate in Yirginia, the communicants added 
through his instrumentality, numbered between four and five 

Bishop Moore was the cordial choice of the convention, which 
on the 5th of May, 1814, with so much unanimity invited him 
to the Episcopal charge of this diocese, and was consecrated in 
New-York, on the 18th of May, 1814, by Bishop White, assisted 
by Bishop Hobart, Grisvvold and Dehon. 

In regard to the manner in which he discharged the responsi- 
ble functions of his high and dignified office as*hief pastor of 
this diocese, we do not propose to dwell. It is generally known 
how entirely he possessed the respect, .confidence and love of his 
clergy and what an object of veneration and filial affection he 
was universally among the whole people of his Episcopal 
charge. At his decease, (11th Nov., 1841) Bishop Moore was 
in the eightieth year of his age ; in the fifty-fifth of his ministry, 
and the twenty-eighth of his Episcopate." 

From the month of Oct., 1788, until Nov., 1790, the Parish re- 
mained destitute of a settled minister, although not without occa- 
sional services; when the 


accepted an invitation to the rectorship. He was the son of Asa, 


and grandson of Nathaniel, the fourth in descent from Nathaniel 
Foote, one of the first settlers of Wethersfield, Oonn.a He was 
born at Colchester, now Marlborough, Oct. 5th, 1760, and was 
graduated M. A., at Dartmouth, in 1778.b Mr. Foote was or- 
dained deacon by the Jit. Rev. Samuel Seabury, D. D., Bishop 
of Connecticut, on the 11th of June; and priest on the 22nd of 
October, 1788. In 1790 he was called to the rectorship of this 
Parish. At a meeting of the wardens and vestrymen of Grace 
Church, Rye, Dec. the 15th, 1790. it was resolved, — "that we 
make choice of the Rev. David Foote, to act as rector of this 
Parish, and agree to pay him £100, in half yearly payments, to- 
gether with the profits of the glebe, for his services, one year 
from the seventh of last November," which proposal was accept- 
ed by Mr. Foote. Mr. Foote seems to have retained his con- 
nection with Bishop Seabury ; always attended the conventions 
of Connecticut, and was a member of the Connecticut Conven- 
, tion in 1792. His name is entered there as Daniel Foote, and 
the same mistake occurs in the register of the clergy, in the 
Journal of New- York, in 1791, and also in the Journal of the 
General Convention of 1792,<: He -continued rector of this 
church till 1793, when, after many judicious efforts to restore 
order and promote both the spiritual and temporal prosperity of 
the Parish, in the morning of life and the midst of his usefulness, 
he wa* called from the field of labor to reap an eternal reward. 
His tombstone bears the following simple inscription : — 

In memory 


the Rev. Mr. DAVID FOOTE 

late Pastor at 

Kye & White' Plains, 

who departed this life the 1st of Aug't, 


aged 32 Years. 

Blessed are the dead who 

die in the Lord. 

» See History of the Foote Family, by Nathaniel Goodwin, Hartford, 1849. 

<> Historical notice of the Clergy ordained by Bishops Seabury and Jarvis, from 
Appendix to Conn. Journal of Convocation. No. xxxiii. 

« Historical notice of Clergy ordained by Bishops Seabury and Jarvis, Appendix 
to Conn. Journal of Cunvocation. No. xxxix- 


Upon the 14th of June, 1792, Mr. Isaac Purdy and Captain , 
Joshua Purdy, were empowered to receive of the executors of 
Miss Anna Maria Jay, deceased, a legacy of £100, given by her 
in her last will to the corporation of the church in Rye, and 
put the same at interest on good security, payable in one year. 
This sum was judiciously appropriated towards enlarging the 
Slebe lands belonging to the Parish. Miss Jay, who died on the 
4th of September, 1791, was the daughter of Peter Jay, Esq., 
first senior warden of the Parish under the charter of 1764. 

Upon the death of Mr. Poote the 

was called to, and accepted the rectorship in. 1793. He was tha 
son of John Sands, by Elizabeth Jackson, and grandson of Col. 
John Sands, of Cow Neck, L. I., a descendant of Capt. James 
Sands, who emigrated from Berkshire, England, to Plymouth 
Mass., in 1658.* He was born at Cow Neck, 25th of December 
1760, and was educated' at Hempstead, under the tuition of the 
Rev. Leonard Cutting, A. M., the rector of that Parish. He was 
ordajned deacon by Bishop Provoost, in 1792, and soon afterward 
appointed minister of the churches at l^astvvood and Islip, L. I. 
from v/hence he removed to this Parish. 

The sum of money raised, for the Rev. John J. Sand|, as a 
salary for preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ at Rye and 
White Plains, was £93 per annum. The glebe lands of the 
church, at this time, appear to have been very unproductive, so 
that the rector was principally supported by public subscription. 

In 1794, it was determined by the vestry, to change the name 
and seal of the church — accordingly, at a meeting of that body 

• Capt. James Sands was born at Reading, Berks, A. D., 1623, and arrived with 
Sarah, his wife, at Plymouth, in 1658. Shortly thereafter, he, with fifteen others 
purchased Block Island, and removed thither from Taunton. He died, March 
13, 169,5. He had four sons and two daughters. The three elder brothers, John, 
James and Samuel, removed to Long Island, and purchased a tract of land on 
Cow Neck, since called Sands' Point. 


on the 26th of January, it was rfesolved to substitute the title 
Christ, instead of Grace, by which the church had heretofore 
been distinguished, and Mr. Peter Jay was requested to obtain 
a new seal."" 

The old parsonage having been destroyed by fire this year, 
the Vestry resolved to purchase the house and land of Mr. Isaac 
Doyghty, for the sum of £400. A subscription was accordingly 
set on foot for that purpose. 

The names of the subscribers, and the amount of their contri- 
butions, are recorded in the book of vestry minutes. One half 
of the purchase money was subsequently paid by the vestry, 
and the balance in May, 1795. This purchase embraced the 
glebe, now owned by the church, on which the parsonage 

Upon the 4th of May, 1796, Mr. Sands, in consequence of 
some dissatisfaction, resigned his charge as rector of the Parish. 
He subsequently abandoned the ministry and died in Brooklyn, 
not long since, leaving issue, one son, John Joseph, and a 

He was succeeded in November, 179'6, by the 


He was the son of the Rev. John Ogilvie, D. D., of New- 
York, by his wife Catharine Sims, and grandson of William 
Ogilvie, youngest son of Sir Walter Ogilvie, Kn't, afterward 
Baron Ogilvie, of Deskford.'' His grandfather who was a 

• Church Recoxds. — On the 11th of September, 1794, Mr. Jay presented a new 
seal to the Church/ 

'' The noble family of Ogilvie has given rise to the Lords of Findlater and Sea- 
field, the Barons of BaniF and other eminent houses of North Britain. Its descent 
from Dubican, the son of Indechtraig, Maorraor, or Thane of Angus, vi^ho died m 
939, is capable of proof The more recent progenitor, however, was James Ogilvie, 
of Cardell, who was succeeded by his grandson, Sir Walter Ogilvie, knight, (son of 
Alexander, by Barjrara, daughter of Walter Ogilby, of the Boyno,) who was elevated 
to the peerage of Scotland, 4th Oct., 1616, by the title of Baron Ogilvie, of Desk- 
ford. His lordship married first, Agnes, eldest daughter of Robert 3d Elphinston, 


native of Scotland, came to this country about the middle of 
the last century. He was born at New-York, October 16th, 
1758, and was educated at King's College, where he graduated 
Batchelor of Arts, in 1774. During the Revolution he held a 
commission in a corps of loyalists i'^ and at the peace removed 
to England. He subsequently returned to his native country, 
studied theology under the Rev. Dr. Ogden, of Newark, N. J.) 
was ordained deacon by Bishop Provoost, in Trinity Church, 
New- York, A. D., 1787, and priest by Bishop Seabury, October 
3rd, 1790.i> He was rector of Christ Church, New Brunswick, 
from his ordinatioffto 1790, and of St. Paul's Church, Norwalk, 
Conn., from 1790 to 1796, when he Avas called to this Parish. 

At a vestry meeting held in the town of Mamaroheck, oh the 
26th of Oct., 1796, it was ordered : — " That a call be made out 
and delivered to Mr. Ogilvie. His salary to consist of £110, 
yearly, for three jears, and all the sums of money over and 
above that amount, that shall be hereafter put in the subscrip- 
tion papers."" 

Mr. Ogilvie died at Rye, April 3rd, 1797, and was buried by 
the side of his predecessors in the cemetery belonging to the 

by whom he Had a daughter ; Christian married Sir John Forbes, of Pitsligo. 
He espoused, secondly, Lady Mary Douglas, third daughter of Wilham, Earl of 
Morton, and had by that lady, James, who succeeded him, and William, besides a 
daughter, Margaret, who rrianied first, James Douglas, Earl of Buchan, and secondly, 
Andrew, eighth Lord, Gray. William married Catharine, daughter of Lancaster 
Sims, of New-York, and had by that lady, William, a lieutenant in the royal uavy> 
who was killed during the Revolution and interred at Albany ; and the Rev. John, who 
was born in the City of New-York, A. D., 1723. Mary, only daughter of William and 
Catharine Ogilvie, married Dr. Barent Rourbach. . The arms of Ogilvie are : — " Ar. 
a lion, passant, guardaut, gu. armed and langued az., crowned with an imperial 
crown, ppr. — Crest, a lion, rampant ppr., armed and langued gu. holding in the dex- 
ter paw a rose of the last, stalked and leaved, vert. — Motto over the crest, — Fortitex 
et Buaviter. 

• Sabine's American Loyalists. 

' Historical notice of Clergy ordained by Bishops Seabury and Jarvis, from 
Appendix to Conn. Journal of Convocation. No. xxxix, 

' Rye Vestry Book. 


church or opposite side of Blind Brook. He was a tall, noble 
looking man, a pleasant companion, a good reader and a very- 
respectable preacher. There is a fine portrait of him as a boy, 
painted by Copley, in the possession of his daughter, Mrs. Corn- 
stock. He is'depicted in a long crimson coat with gilt buttons 
and blue vest. His first wife, to whom he was married 4th of 
September, 17-78, was Amelia, daughter of Cornehus Willett, of 
Willett's Point. By this lady he had issue, — first, Elizabeth 
Anne, born July 20th, 1779, who . married- Thomas Belden, of 
Fairfield, Conn., and died January 16th, 1846 ; secondly, 
Amelia Willett, born December 13th,^1780, widow of the late 
Jabez Oomstock, Esq., of New- York. Mrs. Ogilvie died March 
18th, 1781. Mr. Ogilvie espoused, secondly, a daughter of the 
Rev. Dr. McWhorter, the Presbyterian minister of Newark, 
N. J., by whom he left no issue. 

We have already seen that Grace Church, Rye, was first 
incorporated by royal charter in 1764, under the title of the 
" Rector and inhabitants of the Parish of Rye, in communion 
of the Church of England, as by law established. It was now 
determined to re-incorporate the church under an act of the 
Legislature of this State, entitled "An Act for the relief of the 
Protestant Episcopal Church in the State of New- York, passed 
the 17th of March, 1795, 'by the style and title of Christ 
Church, at the town of Rye, in the County of Westchester 
and State qf New-York ;' and Monday (in Easter Week) be 
observed yearly and every year, forever hereafter, to be the 
day for the election of officers.''^ 



was chosen Rector in 1797. Mr. Haskell was born in the vi- 

» County Rec. Religions Soc. Lib. A. The first officers under the above incor- 
poration were: — Peter Jay and Isaac Purdy, Churckwardens ; Joshua Pardy 
John Haight, Thomas Brown, John Guion, Thomas Thomas, Gilbert Hatfield, 
Jonathan Pardy and Nathaniel Purdy, Vestrymen. 



cinity of Boston, Mass., in 1762, and was descended from Ro- 
ger Haskell, one of the original settlers of Salem, in 1639. His 
early inclinations led him to adopt a military life. In the sum- 
mer of 1781, being then an orphan, he entered the military 
service of his doimtry. Upon the evacuation of the City of 
New-York, by the British forces, November 25th, 1783, he was 
among the troops under General Knox, who took possession of 
the city. In October, 1784, he received an honourable dis^ 
charge, and subsequently, a sergeant's pension, which he en- 
joyed to the day of his death. Returning to his native state, 
he became a student in Philip's Academy, Andover, and in Sep- 
tember, 1786, entered Yale College, New Haven, where he grad- 
uated in September, 1790. He was afterwards employed for 
two years as a tutor in Q,ueen's College, New Brunswick, N. J. 
In the year 1794, he received deacon's orders, and in 1795, 
priest's orders from the hands of the Right Rev. Samuel Provoost, 
Bishop of New- York. From the period of his ordination, (1794,) 
until May, 1823, he was an ofRciatmg clergyman in the Protes- 
tant Episcopal Church. 

At a vestry meeting held on the 7th of August, 1797, it was 
ordered, " that the Rev. Samuel Haskell have a regular call to 
take the rectorship of Christ Church at Rye and the White 
Plains, and that the clerk of this house make the call in writing, 
and forward the same to Mr. Haskell as early as possible." 

In April, 1801, Mr. Haskell resigned the charge of this Par- 
ish, and in the month of May following, succeeded the Rev. 
William Walter, D. D., as rector of Christ Church, Boston. 
Here he remained till September, 1803, when he resigned, and 
accepted an invitation from St. Ann's Church, Gardiner, in the 
state of Maine. =^ 

At a meeting of the vestry of Christ Church, Rye, held the 
18th day of April, 1801, it was on motion resolved, " that an ad- 
dress of thanks be presented to Mr. Samuel Haskell for his ser- 
vices to the said Church, and that the clerk draw and lay the 

» Hist. Account of Christ Church, Boston, by the Rector. Boston, IS21. 


address before the house, &c." In answer to the petition of the 
churchwardens and vestrymen of this Parish, praying for a 
donation 1;o enable them to finish the church and parsonage 
house, the corporation of Trinity Church, New- York, were 
pleased to contribute the sum of $750 for a parsonage at Rye. 

"At a meeting of the standing committee, appointed by the 
wardens and vestry of Christ Church, Rye, August the 27th, 
1801, on motion, resolved, that this committee for, and in behalf 
of the wardens and vestry of Christ Church at Rye, do present 
their grateful thanks to the wardens and vestry of Trinity 
Church, in the City of New- York, for the generous donation re- 
cently received of them ; sincerely hoping, that with the bles- 
sing of God, their liberality may be a means of promoting the 
prosperity of our Church." 

On the 18th of October, 1801, the 

received an invitation to the rectorship, and in the month of 
April following, took the pastoral charge of the Parish. He 
was the son of Enos and Margaret Rogers, and was born in 
Philadelphia county, Pennsylvania, April 9th, 1766. Though 
the son of Cluaker parents, he joined the Methodist Society in 
1790, and became a zealous and laborious itinerant preacher in 
that connection, in the Maryland circuit. In 1791, he was or- 
dained by them, and appointed to the City of New- York in 
1793. The next year he was appointed to Boston, Lynn, and 
Marblehead, and subsequently to Middletown, Connecticut. In 
1798, he left the Metliodist persuasion, was ordained deacon 
by the Right Rev. Abraham Jarvis, D, D., Bishop of Connecti- 
cut, June 5th, 1799, and priest by the same, October 6th, ISOO. 
He officiated at Hebron, Conn., imtil 1802. He was called to 
this Parish, as we have, seen, in 1801, and remained its rector 
until January 25th, 1809, when he rested from his labors. He 
was once a delegate to the General Convention from' Connecti- 
cut. =i 

» Hist. Not. of Clergy, ordained by Bishops Seabury and Jarvis, from Appen- 
dix to Conn. Journal of Convocation. No. Iv. 


At a vestry meeting held on the 18th day of October, 1801, 
it was resolved, " that a call be given to the Rev. Mr. Evan 
Rogers, of Hebron, in Connecticut, and that a salary of $275, 
together with the parsonage house and lands, be offered to him 
for the term of three years, &c." The above call was accepted 
by Mr. Rogers, on the 16th of January, 1802. 

In 1803, it was resolved by the vestry, " that Mr. Rogers, 
our present minister ; or whoever shall succeed him in the rec- 
torship, shall hereafter attend service and prayers at Rye and 
at the White Plains, alternately as usual, provided our brethren 
in and about the White Plains, shall raise an equal proportion 
of the salary, or that such rector shall attend at the White Plains, 
in proportion to the sum of money that shall be raised by our 
brethren in and about the White Plains." 

Upon the 11th of April, 1804, it was resolved by the vestry, 
" that the Rev. Mr. Rogers have the charge of cleansing the 
Church the present year ; and that he cause it to be lighted up 
on Christmas Eve, for which he is to have the sum of ten dol- 

In 1807, Mr. Rogers reported to the Convention as follows : 
— "since the last Convention, nothing remarkable has taken 
place in this Church ; there appears however, of late, an in- 
creasing attention to public worship, and also to the holy ordi- 

His notitia parochialis for 1808, stood thus : — " Baptisms, nine- 
teen ; marriages, thirteen ; burials, nine ; communicants about 
forty ; and the number of families belonging to his church, 
about one hundred." ■ Upon the 2d of May, of that year, it was 
resolved by the vestry — "that the Rev. E. Rogers, have the 
care of the church the ensuing year." It proved alas, the last 
of his ministry ; for, on the 25th of January following, " he fell 

In vain our fancy strives to paint 
The moment after death, 
The glories that surround the saint, 
When he resigns his breath. 

One gentle sigh his fetters break ; 
We scarce can say, " He's gone," 


Before the willing spirit takes 
Her mansiott near the throne. 

Faith strives, but all its efforts fail 
To trace her heavenward flight ; 
No eye can pierce within the veil, 
Which hides that world of light. 

Thus much (and this is all) we know, 
They are supremely blest ; 
Have done with sin, and care, and woe, 
And with their Saviour rest. 

On harps of gold his name they praise, 
His presence always view ; — 
And if we here their footsteps trace, 
There we shall praise Him too. 

The following obituary notice, of this individual, is taken 
from the Churchman's Magazine. 

"Departed this life on Thursday, the 25th of January, 1809, 
after a few days illness, the Rev. Evan Rogers, Rector of Christ 
Church at Rye, New- York, — In the death of this excellent man 
society has suffered a real loss, because his life was an exem- 
plification of the doctrines he preached. He was endeared to 
a numerous acquaintance by his deep piety, the mildness of his 
temper, the profitableness of his conversation and the purity of 
his morals ; such a life must produce a happy death. He died 
in the full exercise of his reason, happy and resigned to the will 
of God and confident of a joyful resurrection."'^ 

His remains repose in the ancient village burying ground, 
near the entrance of the Neck proper. The following is the in- 
scription on his grave stone : — 

Masonic Society 
in the town of Rye, 
have erected this monument 

sacred to the memory 
of their beloved brother, 

• Churchman's Magazine vol. vi. p. 80, 


pastor of Christ Church, 
in this town, 
who departed this life 
January 25th, 1809, 
in the 42d year 
of his life, 
extremely lamented. 

" My flesh shall slumber in the ground, 
Till the last trumpet's joyful sound ; 
Then burst these chains with sweet surprise, 
And in my Saviour's image rise." 

At a meeting of the wardens and vestry of Christ Church at 
Rye, held at the house of Nathaniel Penfield, 25th of February, 
1809, it was resolved, " that Messrs. John Guion, Gilbert 
Brown, and David Rogers, Jr., be a committee to settle all ac- 
counts, between the Parish and the late Rector, &c,, and that 
the same committee be authorized to present a call to the Rev. 
Samuel Haskell, Rector of St Ann's Church, Gardiner, Maine, 
to remove and take the Rectorship of our church, &c." 



accepted the invitation and on the last Sunday in June, 1809, 
delivered his first sermon in the Parish, after an absence of 
nearly eight years. 

At a meeting of the wardens and vestry of the Episcopal 
Church of Rye and the White Plains, held at the church in the 
town of Rye, 12th of August, 1809, on motion resolved, " that 
whereas we the wardens and vestry of the aforesaid church of 
Rye, have called the Rev. Samuel Haskell, to take the retorship 
of said church, we do .hereby guarantee or secure to him, the said 
Rev. S. Haskell, the use and occupancy of the parsonage house 
and the glebe belonging to said church, during his residence 
with us ; we also insure to him three hundred dollars per annum, 
the sum stipulated in our call to him for the first three years, 
and the monies which may from time to time be subscribed for 
his maintenance. We also agree that he be regularly inducted in- 


to the Church agreeably to the constitution of the Protestant 
Episcopal Church, in the State of New-York, whenever the 
Bishop of said Church shall be disposed to attend to suah in- 
duction ; also resolved, that the salary of the Rev. S. Haskell, 
commence the first of June, the time he left his church at the 

On the 26th of August, 1809, it was resolved, "that the clerk 
(of the vestry) request Bishop Moore to attend to the induction 
of the Rev. Mr. Haskell."i> The following passage appeared 
in the Churchman's Magazine for September, 1809. " The Rev. 
Samuel Haskell has been duly instituted rector. of Grace Church, 
Rye, and White Plains, which had become vacant in conse- 
quence 'of the much lamented death of the late rector, Evan 

At a meeting of the vestry of Christ Church, Rye, in 1809, 
it w^as resolved. " that the pulpit and pews in the Church be 
altered, and that the standing committee be authorized to hire 
the sum of £50 to defray the expenditures of the proposed al- 
terations, &c."<* 

The Rev. Samuel Haskell, in his report for 1809, says : — 
" Christ Church, Rye, appears to be in a flourishing state ; since 
the 1st of July last, baptisms — adults, 4, infants, 4 — 8 ; marri- 
ages, 2 ; deaths, 9 ; communicants, about 50." 

At a meeting of the wardens and vestry of Christ Church, 
August 30th, 1810, it was on motion resolved, "that the propo- 
sals from Peter Jay Munro, and John Peter de Lancey, to erect 
an Episcopal Church, be postponed until the next meeting, for 
future ^nsideration." 

In hi§ report for the above year, Mr. Haskell observes,' " that 
th6-P^^sh of Rye and the White Plains, by the grace of God, 
is in a peaceable and harmonious state. The congregations 
are large, increasing, and in good fellowship among themselves 
and with each other." 

» Church Rec. of Rye. 
b Ibid. 

" Churchman's Magazine. 
<J Church Records. 


Upon the 27th of June, 1811, "the vestry went into a dis- 
cussion of the subject of building a chapel on Rye neck, to be 
connected with the Church at Rye, came to no decision — but 
resolved to postpone the subject for further consideration, &c." 

In his parochial report for 1816, Mr. Haskell observes, "that 
the wardens and vestrymen of Christ Church, Rye, judged it 
expedient to withdraw from the White Plains, and to have the 
stated services of the rector limited to the Church in Rye, and 
have acted accordingly ; so that the White Plains are now 

In May, 1823, as before stated, Mr. Haskell relinquished the 
charge of this Parish, and never afterwards accepted a paro- 
chial cure. He went from this place to New Rochelle,. where, on 
the 24th of August, 1845, in the 83d year of his age, he was call- 
ed to give an account of his stewardship. His remains are in- 
terred in the burying ground of Trinity Church, New Ro- 
chelle, a short distance from the sacred edifice, in which, du- 
ring the last twenty two years of his life, he had attended the 
services of the Church. His tombstone bears this epitaph : — ■ 

the Memory 
I of the 


who died Aug. 21th 1845 

aged 83. 



who succeeded Mr. Haskell, wa^ a native of Enniskillen, in the 
north of Ireland, and came to America about 1816-17. After 
obtaining holy orders, he was for a short time rector of Trinity 
Church, Pittsburgh, Penn., and on the 1st of October, 1823, 
he took charge of this Parish. 

He fell asleep in the arms of his Saviour, on Thursday, Au- 
gust the 26th 1830. His remains were interred in the old vil- 
lage burying ground, near those of Mr. Rogers. The following 


notice of his. death appeared in the Christian Journal of 1 830. 
i' Died, at Rye, Westchester County, New- York, on Thursday, 
August 26th, the Rev. William Thompson, rector of Christ 
Church, in that town, 

Mr. Thompson was a native of Ireland, and came to this 
country about twelve or fourteen years ago. Soon after his ar- 
rival here, he reviewed a determination which he had previous- 
ly cherished at home, but abandoned on account of delicate . 
health, of entering the holy ministry ; and after completing a 
course of study with that view, was ordained deacon by the 
Right Rev. Bishop Hobart, in Christ Church, in this city, on 
the Thursday before Easter, April 19th, 1821. He soon after 
removed to the charge of Trinity Church, Pittsburgh, Penn., 
and at the convention of that diocese, in St. Peter's Church, 
Philadelphia, on Wednesday, May 8th, 1822, he was admitted 
by the Right Rev. Bishop White, to the holy order of priests. 
Two or three years afterwards, Mr. Thompson returned to this 
Diocese, and settled in the Parish, in the charge of which he 
continued until his death. He was a man of great piety, and 
kind and affectionate dispositions, and most sincerely devoted 
to his Master's service. He understood well, and therefore 
highly prized the distinctive principles of the communion at 
whose altars he ministered, and happily illustrated the natural 
union of the sound and good churchman, the truly pious man, 
and the faithful and evangelical preacher. His health was de- 
clining for a long time before his death. He was conscious of 
it ; but was supported and consoled under that consciousness, by 
the grace of God strengthening his faith, and brightening his 
christian hopes. Mr. Thompson was in the prime of life ; 
when in the ordinary course of Providence, many years might 
have been expected to be added to his ministry."^ 

A neat monumental tablet, on the north side of the chancel 
of Christ Church, perpetuates the memory of this excellent 

The Rev. John M. Forbes, was called to, and accepted the rec- 

» Chnstian Journal, vol. xiv. p. 286. 


torship in 1830. This gentleman, who is a son of the late 
James Grant Forbes, Esq., and a grandson of the Rev. John 
Forbes, one of the Venerable Society's missionaries for the Propa- 
gation of the Gospel, has recently apostatized to the Church of 
Rome, and is now ofHciating in his appropriate character as a 
priest of that Communion. 

For the successors of Mr. Forbes, see list of rectors. 


Christ Church, Rye, is agreeably situated upon rising ground, 
overlooking the village and vale of Blind Brook. This building 
erected in the year 1788, upon the site of the old stone edi- 
fice, called Grace Church, is a plain edifice of wood, surmount- 
ed with an embattled tower, and a small vestry room attached 
to the rear. Its interior consists of the nave, two aisles, galle- 
ry and chancel. The two following tablets are placed on the 
walls : — 

In memory of 

of Christ Church at Rye, 
a native of Enniskillen, 
ordained April, 1820, 
appointed to the charge of this Parish, 
September, 1823, 
Died August 26th, 1830. 
" Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright, for 
the end of that man is peace" — Psalm ixxvii. T. 37. 
Erected by his affectionate 


Father and Mother, 


who died 

Sept. 7th, 1850, 

aged 88 years 

and Sophia his wife 


who died 

March 24th, 1831, 

Aged 80 years. 

" Rejoice, because I said I go 

unto the Father." 

Beneath the floor of the church, lie pillowed in the darkness 
of the grave, the Rev. George Muirson, who died rector of this 
Parish in 1708, and his successor, the Rev. Christopher Bridge, 
who departed this life, A. D., 1719. 

Belonging to this Church is a silver paten and chalice, pre- 
sented by her Majesty, Queen Anne, A. D. 1706. The former 
is perfectly plain— the latter is bell mouthed, will hold about 
one quart of wine, and stands nine inches and a quarter high. 
They bear the following inscription, viz :— " Ann^ REGiNiE." 
These articles have been used in the administration of the Holy 
Communion, nearly a century and a half. It appears from the' 
following, that the royal donation consisted of other articles :— 
" At a monthly meeting of the Society, in 1706, the Lord Bish- 
op of London, reported that her Majesty, of her princely grace 
and favour, had been pleased, (through his Lordship's hands) 
to allow five large Bibles, Common Prayer Books, and Books of 
Homilies, as also pulpit cloths, communion table cloths, silver 
chalices and patens, for each of the five churches in the gov- 
ernment of New-York, viz : — Hempstead and Jamaica, in Long 
Island, Westchester, Rye, and Staten Island. So far may the 
prophecy and the fulfilling of it be applied to the Church of 
Christ arising in America : — 'Kings shall be thy nursing fath- 
ers, and Queens thy nursing mothers.' "» 

Three pieces of communion silver, viz : — a flagon, chalice 
and alms plate, are inscribed as follows :— " Presented to Christ 
Church at Rye, by Mrs. Mary Jay, 181S."i> 

» An account of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign 
Parts, &c., printed by order of the Society — John Chamberlayne, Sec, London, 

>> At a meeting of the vestry, held 29th Oct. 1818, It was resolved, " That the 
jrardens and vestry of the Church, in their behalf, and in behall of the congre- 


There is likewise a chalice bearing the following inscription : 
— " Presented to the Parish of Christ Church, Rye, by their 
affectionate friend, P. S. J. Chauncey, 1848." 

Upon two copper alms bowls are inscribed : — " Presented to 
Christ Church, at Rye, by James Meadows, 1769." 

Besides a fine toned bell, manufactured by E. Meneely, of 
West Troy, in 1842, the Church contains a neat organ. The 
old bell presented by the Rev. James Wetmore, and knolled for 
the first time on Christmas Day, 1732, fell with the tower when 
the Church was burnt during the Revolutionary War. 

The decayed state of the present edifice erected, as we have 
seen sixty-five years ago ; and the increasing population of 
the Parish, render the erection of a u.q'n and more commodious 
church absolutely necessary. For the accomplishment of this 
desirable end, the vestry have already taken active measures ; 
a subscription list has been freely circulated, and upwards of 
ten thousand dollars subscribed towards the good work. 

The present glebe!! was purchased by the vestry in 1794, 
upon which a neat parsonage has been erected. To Christ 
Church, Rye, was formerly attached St. Peters Chapel,'at Port- 



Q.ueen Anne, Edward Viscount Cornbury, Hon. Caleb Heath- 
cote, Rev. George Muirson, Hon. Samuel Purdy, Isaac Denham, 
Esq., St. George Talbot, Esq., Peter Jay, Esq., Ana Jay, Mary 

gation, gratefully acknowledge the same, and return her their unfeigned thanks, 
with their best wishes and ardent prayers that she may long live in the enjoy- 
ment of health, and after this life' ended, may participate in the pleasures of 
a blessed immortality." 

« Jno. Denham, of Rye, in County of Fairfield, sold " a certain half lotment of 
land, lying within the /cW of Rye, ne%r the upper end of \,h.e field, being in esti- 
mation four acres, &c. ; bounded as followeth : — northerly with the parsonage 
land and easterly with the highway, and'southerly with the land of John Frost 
and easterly with the highway."— Town Rec., Lib. B, 74. At a town meeting 
held at Rye, Feb.2Sth, 1693-4, " The town doth order that what hath been done 
foj the repairing of the parsonage house the townsmen shall have power to make 
a rent and appoint every man his pay."— Town Rec, Lib. D. 

7. ^ 

Christ Cluircli, Rye— Eroctcil A. D. 1S55. 





2,fl . 

li nn 





4 M 


/-? 20 30 

Ground plan of Christ Church. 

[To face page 343] 


Jay, Mrs. Philemon Halstead* the Venerable Society for the 
Propagation of the Gospel, and the Corporation of Trinity 
Church, New-York.b 

The first delegates from this Parish to the Diocesan Conven- 
tion in 1785, were William Miller and Alexander Hunt, Esqrs. 


The following inscription is taken from a tombstone found in 
the wall on the west side of the church : — 

Sacred to the Memory 

of Mrs. Martha Marven, 

late consort of Mr. Lewis 

Marven, of Rye, who exchanged 

this life for a better, Peb'y 5th, 1767, 

in the 39th year of her age. 
" Let us since life can little more supply — 
Than just to look about us and to die, 
Hope humbly, and with trembling pinions sore. 
Wait the great teacher, death, and God adore." 

Many other persons were interred near the church, as 1 have 
been credibly informed. The following memorials are from the 
village burying ground : — Mary, daughter to Samuel and Mary 
KnifFen, deceased, January ye 12th, 1707. In memory of Mr. 
Joseph Lyon, who deceased February the 21st, A. D., 1761, in 
the 84th year of his age. In the Blind Brook cemetery, opposite 
the church} is a gravestone inscribed to the memory of a grand- 
son of the Rev. James Wetmore, with a figure curiously carved 
in the similtude of a cherub, surrounded with a rich foliated 

' This Lady had the goodness to present two elegant communion cloths to the 
Church, in 1833- 

^ Trinity Church, in 1800, presented the sum of S750 for a parsonage, at Rye. 
In 1813, ^500 for Christ Church, Rye. The old Prayer Book, which is still used 
in the service of the Church, was presented by Mrs. Peter A. Jay, Aug., 1831. 
It is entitled " The Book of Common Prayer and Administration of the Sacra- 
ments and other rites and Ceremonies of the Church, New- York. By Direc- 
tion of the Gen. Con. Printed by Hugh Gaine, at the Bible, Hanover Square, 


border, — sacred to the dear Memory of JAMES, beloved son 
of Timothy and Jane Wetmore, who changed this Life for a 
better, Nov. the 25th, 1758, Aged 13 months and 4 ds. 



April, 1704, Rev. T. Pritchard, CI. A. M. pr mort. War. and Ves 
31 July, 1705, Rev. Geo. Muirson, CI., A. M., per mort. 
17 Oct., 1710, Rev. Christopher Bridge, CI., A. M., per mort. 
7 June, 1722, Rev. Robert Jenney, CI., A. M., per resig. 
June, 1726, Rev. James Wetmore, CI., A. M., per mort. 

17 Nov., 1762, Rev. Ebenezer Punderson, CI. A. M., pe mort. 
9 Sept., 1765, Rev. Ephraim Avery, CL, A. M., per mort. 

1777, Rev. Isaac Hunt, CL, A. M., per resig. 
5 Sept., 1787, Rev. Richard C. Moore, Presb. A. M. per resig 
15 Dec, 1790, Rev. David Foote, Presb., A. M., per mort. 
5 Dec, 1793, Rev. John J. Sands, Presb., A. M., per resig. 

26 Oct., 1796, Rev. George Ogilvie, Presb., A. M., per mort. 

7 Aug., 1797, Rev. Samuel Haskell, Presb., B. A., per resig. 

18 Oct., 1801, Rev. Evan Rogers, Presb., per mort. 

27 Feb., 1809, Rev. Samuel Haskell, Presb, B. A., per resig. 

8 Dec, 1823, Rev. William. Thompson, A. M., per mort. , 

1830, Rev. John Forbes, Presb., per resig. 
1832, Rev. W. M. Carmichael, A. M. Presb., pr resig. 
8 Sept.,' 1834, Rev. Peter S. Chauncey, A. M. Presb. pr resig. ' 
13 May, 1849, Rev. Ed. C. Bull, A. M., Presb., present rector. 

A. D. 1705, Baptisms 200, Communicants 30 































A. D. 1773, Baptisms 101, Communicants 9 



. dittto 



















In 1712 the number of persons belonging to the church in 

this Parish were 313. In 1853, number of families were 64. 

In 1703, the population of the Parish was - 800 

1712, " " - 774 

1840, " "... 1,803 

1850, " " - - 2,590 


Time of AppH. 




Joseph Cleator, 

£15 per aim. 


Thomas Huddlestone, 



John Carhart, 



Fhnt Dwight, 



Samuel Purdy, 



William Sturgeon, B. A., 



Timothy Wetmore, 



John Rand, 



John Avery, 

£10 per ann, 


James Wetmore, 



Number of Scholars, 



(i II 



a II 



II II . . 

• 60. 

Peio Holders in 1792. — The following names appear on the 
minutes, of individuals who purchased pews in 1792, viz. :— 
The widow of Josiah Brown, Peter Jay, Joshua Purdy, Isaac 
Brown, Andrew Lyon, Thomas Brown, Robert Kennedy, Jesse 
Hunt, Esq., Joshua Pardy, Jr., Thomas Lyon, Ezekiel Hal- 



stead, the widow of William Griffen, Samuel Marvin, Benjamin 
Griffen, Deborah Horton, John Griffen, Roger Purdy, Jr., Gilbert 
Brown, John P. De Lancey, Bartholomew Hadden, Isaac Purdy, 
John Haight, Jr., Ezrahiah Wetmore, Samuel Purdy, John Gui- 
on, Sylvanus Purdy, John Haight, Daniel Haight, Tamer Bar- 
ker — nine seats reserved by the Vestry.' 


George Lane, John Brondig. 

No records from 1696 to 1703. 
Caleb Heathcote, Joseph Theall. 

Joseph Theall, Johathan Hart. 

Cornelius Seely, 


Isaac Denham. 


Jonathan Miller. 

David Ogden. 

Moses Knapp. 

Jacob Haviland. 

Joseph Budd, 
John Brundige, 
John Brundige, 
David Ogden, 
Moses Knapp, 


J^apob Havijand, Henry Disbrow. 


Henry Disbrow, George Lane. 

1718, . 
Ebenezer Theal, - George Lane. 

JohriHaight, ^^^, Isaac Denham. 


Samuel Purdy, Henry Fowler, 

. -- ^ 1722. - 

Ge&rge Lane, Benjaoiin Brown. 

17^3-. • ■ ■ ' 

Henry Fowlery John Horton. 

Jonathan -Haight, Jacob Haviland. 

Samuel Purdy, Benjamin Browii, 

1726. ' 
Daniel Purdy, John Budd. 

William Fowler, Abraham Miller. 

172k-'' ■ ■ ^ 

David Ogden'";' Daniel Purdy. 

DanieiPu-rdy, John Glover, 

James Woods, John Budd. 

Daniel Purdy, sen., Joseph Kniffin. 

1733, ; 

Danid Purdy, setj,, William Willett, , 


Daniel Purdy, j^rancis Doughty,, 




Damiel Purdy, . Benjamin BrowH- 

Samuel Purdy. Francis Doughty, 

Hachaliati- Brawn, Andrew Merritt, 

Daniel Purdy, John Thomas. 

John Thomas, Daniel Purdy. 

Da^iieJ Purdy, John Thottias, 

Samuel Burdy^ , ' Samuel Tredwell, 

Samuel Tredwell, , Samuel Purdy,. 

Elisha pudd, Charles Th«all. 

Charles Theall, ELisha Budd. , 

James, Hortori, Jeremiah Fowler, 

Jeremiall Fowler, Joseph Sherwood, 

1752.--^, ' ' 
J^oshua Purdy, Roger Parks, jjin,^^ 

William Willett, Jonathan Brown* - 

, - 1759; 

Jonatban Brown-, William Wiilett. 

William Willett, Jonathan Brown, 

Elisha Budd, Ebenezer KhifRn. 




Ebenezer Kniffiii, 


Andrew Merritt. 

John. Thomas, 


Ebenezei; KniiRn. 

Gilbert Bloomer, 


Joshua Purdy. 

Hachaliah Brown, 

'. .' "r ■• 

Timothy Wetmore. 

, ""• V. 


Timothy tVetmore 


Hachaliaji Purdy. 

''■-■' , . '' 

' 1769. 

''■-•''. - ' 

Joshua Purdy, 

James Horton, jun. 

— ' -!■", 


).•; -^ .- '■ ■■' ■ 

Joshua Purdy, 


fienjaiinin Griffen. 

' ■ ^ 


Joshua Purdy, 

James Horton, jun. 


Peter Jay, 

Isaac Purdy.. 


Isaac Purdy, 

- - ""-; 

Jbhn Barkerl 



, ,J 

Peter Jay, 

Isaac Purdy. 



Isaac Purdy, 


Joskua Purdy. 

Joshua Purdyj 


Isaac Purdy. 

John Haight, 


Isaac Purdy. . 

Andr^ew Lyon, , 


John Haight. 

John Haight, 

1803 4 

Andrew Lyon. 

. . John Haight, 

John Guion. 



John. .Guipnj . , 


John Haight. 


John Haight, John Guibn. 

John Guion, Jonathan PuTdy. 

David Brown, 

Jonathan Purdy, David Brown. 

David Brown, Hachaliah Brown., 

1834. ., 
David Brown, Samuel Pijrfiy, 

Hachahah Brown, Josiah Buckley. 

, 1841-2. 
Peter Jay, Hachaliah Brown. 

Hachaliah Brown, ^ 'W-illiarn Bush, 

William Bush,. , Josiah Buckley. 

John 0; Jay, John A. Dix. 




Eastchester, w^jch formerly eonstituted one of the four 
precincts of the extensive parish of Westchester, was. at first 
calJed "Hutchinson's" (frona the celebrated Anne Hiatchinson, 
who, to ayoid the bitter persecutions of the Puritans, fled into 
this neighborhoodfor protection, in 1§42, an* coitimenced, a plan- 
tation,) and subsequently " The Ten '^arrns," an appellation de- 
rivpd from its ancient division among ten proprietors. The 
present name was conferred aS;early as 1666. .. . 

The lands of Eastchester were originally included in the In- 
dian grant of 1640, whereby the Indians conveyed, to the Dutch 
"Vfest Tnjlia Company, all the territory situajted between the 
town of N'orwalk and the North River, 

Upbn the 14th of November, 1654, Thomas Pell, of Fairfield, 
Conn., obtained a second grant from the Indian Sachefti ' Wam- 
page and others, which also embraced the present parish. 

" On the 24th of June, 1664, Thomas Pell granted tO"" James 
Eustis and Philip Pinckney, for themselves and their associates, 
to the number of ten families, to settle down at Hutchinson's,. 


that is, where the house stood at the meadows and- uplands, to 
Hutchinson's River, they paying according to ye proportion of 
the charges, which wa,s disburst-for the. purchase, &c." 

The above grantees were Puritans, from Fairfield in Connec- 
ticut, who claimed Westchester as laying within their jurisdic- 
tion. ' ' 

The first settlers of Eastehester, like the people in general of 
that day, paid early attention to religion, to the support of the 
gospel, and the institutions of the religious society to, which 
they belonged. Itappears that a Congregational or Indepen 
dent Society was organized here in 1665, for in that year it was 
ordefed : — " That all and every one of us, or that shall be, of 
us, do pay unto the' minister according to his mead;" also, 
" That we give new encouragement to Mr. Brewster each other 
■week, to give us a word of exhbrtatioil."* Iii 1670 it was fur- 
ther enacted : — " That whereas, we being a Society of Chris-' 
tiansj living together, have agreed that, all those of our associa- 
tion shall join together in meeting- on Lord's days, to tell about 
(he worsliip of God." It was also resolved, "That whereas' Mo- 
ses Hdif, being deserter, and being behind, and not seeniitig to 
be willing to contribute unto our minister,' where upoii the in- 
habitants of Eastehester, have agreed that the said Moses 'Hoit 
shall be presented unto the next iOourt of Sessions, &c."'' 

Upon the 29th of tTuly, ] 674, " Richard Shute was chosen for 
to go to our honoured GovernoiW as a representative from the 
village of Eastehester, upon the occasion that we may have the 
Rev. Ezekiel Fogge to be established and confirmed by our 
honourable GoVernour, and also the humble request to have the 
liberty or grant to build a Chapel of Ease, and not to be paying 
toward Westchester church's buildingl"" 

* Town Records. 

"> Town Records — " On the 13th January, 1672, it was tesolved to pay j610 per 
annum to Mr. • , as his salary, by ji-ate, by the inhabitants and sojour- 
ners." Persons were allowed to protest against the polleeting of church rates. — 
See protest of John Jackson, Moses Hoit ajid others, Peb. 11. 1674. 

• "town Records. 


The follo,wing day, at a public, meeting- of thg inhabitants of 
Eastch'ester, it was resolved by vote, " To go jointly unto West- 
chester, and so speak with the Rev. Mr. Fogge, by reason we 
heard that Mr. Fogge. did express himself to^be- desirous, and 
also willing to live and settle among us in Eastciiester; in con- 
sideration whereof, we are willing to manifest our acceptance to 
etpbrace his good company, and. shall provide for his present 
comfort, and likewise for his future livelihood.'' » 

Upon the-5th of September, 167?, it was agreed, "That if it 
be the will of God to bring a minister to settle among us, we 
pay'hifft £40 a year for his subsistence, and also provide him a 
house and land for his use, during the time he stays here as 
our minister." , At this meeting it was resolved, " To send Philip 
Pinckney and Samuel D);ake, sen.,, as representatives to West- 
chester; to the town meeting, to treat with that town for the 
.providing. a minister."i> . > 

The following year it was determined, "That we will meet 
together on Sabbath days, for time to come, to celebrate the 
worship and. service of, God, in the best manner that Ajve can at- 
tain unto." " IL was <ilso decided by vote, " That we will pay to- 
wards the carrying on the said, Sabbath days' services, by a free 
will offering for the ensuing year, the following sums : — 

' : ' 

. . s. d. 

s. d. 

'Williath Haiden, 


Will. Gregier, 


Richard Sh,ute, 


Henry Fo.vvler, 


Nat. Tompkins, 


. Henry Creway, 


John Pinckney, 


Samuel Drake, 


Richard Hoadly, 


John Drake, 

10 0"-: 

■,_ , , , John Tompkins, 08 

' Upon the 17fh :of December, the inhabitants of Eastchester 
"Agreed to pay £40 a year unto Mr. Morgan Jones, minister of 
Newtown, L. 1 ; that is to say, tob& :paid unto the said min- 

• Town Records, 
Vlbi4. ,. 
- Ibid. 


ister, for his encouragement to administer the word of God nnto^ 
us, as our minister ; apd that we, the Said inhabitants, do en- 
gage to pay the abovesaid sum of £40 in good provincial pay, 
at the price according to the same of this government, provi- 
ded that, the said Mr. Jones do come and live aniong lis, and 
perform the office of a minister, and to pay it by vote."* 

Feb/ 11th, 1680, we find the Rev, Morgan Jones -officiating in 
the village of Westchester^ i» 

During the year, 1684, Eastchester appears to have beeti iftii- 
t«d with Westchester in the support of a pastor, for in the Spring 
,of the samei year, it was resolved, " That the justices and vestry- 
men of West and Eastchester, and Yonkers, do accept of Mr. 
Warham Mather, as our njinisterfor one whole year."" 

At this periodj-Mr. Samuel Godimg received instructions to 
read in the Bible, and other good sermon books, arid so to car- 
ry on the Sabbath exercises in Eastchester, according to the 
Hon. Col. Fletcher's order.^ 

On the 30th of Nov.,, 1692, the, inhabitants of Eastchester 
agreed to pay the fbllowing sums towards the support of Mr. 
Goding : — ■ ^ ' 

" Henry Fowler, orie bushel of good winter wheat, 

s. .d- - s. d. - 

John Tompkins, 3 6 Jno. Pinetney, 5pecks 

John Clark, 2 of Indian corn, 

Joseph Drake, 4 William Gray, 2 6 

Thomas Pinckney, 3 John Shute, 3 

Isaac Taylor, 2 Benjamin Taylor, 2 

John Drake, 4 Thomas S^ute, 4 6" 

Uprn the 9tk,of May, 1693, it was resolved that a meeting 

* Town Records. - - - , 

I Westchester'Town Records.^" On the 17th day of Dec, 1680, the inhabitants 
of Eastchester agreed by vote, topay £40 a year uato Mr. Jones, ministerof 
Newtown, L. I." - 

" Westchester Town Records. , 

* Eastchester Town Records. "In 1692 Richard Shute, and Samuel Gpding, 
were chosen to carry on the Sabbath day serriees, &c." 


house should be built according to the dimensions agreed 
upon. At a meeting of the inhabitants, held op the 16th of 
May, "It was agreed that the whole charge of building the said 
house, shall be paid according uiito the estates of every particu- 
lar person's list taken." "The same day Capt, Wiliiam Hayden, 
John.Drake, JohnPinekney, Richard ShUte, and Henry Powler, 
sen., -were chosen overseers to superintend the building of the 
meeting house, (fee."* 

By an Act of Assembly, passed 31st Sept., 1693, Eastchester 
became one of the four precincts of the parish of Westchester. 

On the 1st of January, 1693-4, " William Haiden, John Drake, 
a;nd Richard Shute, were chosen to receive forty pounds, as 
according to the free-w,ill offering, and to act and do and lay out 
the said; several sums for the town ;" also, " It was agreed, that 
these men have full power to receive the said sums and lay 
them out towards building the said meeting house, and to render 
account thereof to the town."b 

At a town meeting held the 23rd' day of January, 1694-5, the 
inhabitants " Agreed by vote to lay but half an acre of land to 
be set out for a parsonage lot, to be reserved for the use of the 
town, to be reserved for that use for ever^ which abovesaid 
land is lying in, and being upon the green in Eastchester." <> 

On the 31st of July, 1696, it was determined,' " To lighten the 
meeting house -by a lantern to every seat of the same."* 

At a tovvn meeting held 22nd July, 1697, " It was agreed by 
vote to meet at the meeting house on the 10th day of Au- 
gust next' ensuing, at sun half an hour high in the niorning, in 
order to the .cutting brush about the commoris in Eastchester 
woods, and tp appear at the beat of the drum." 

On the 2nd of January, 1698^9, the inhabitants agreed by 

» Town ReC. " At a town- meeting on the 15th of IJecember, 1693, Moses 
Hoit, JUD.', and others, were Chosen to take a list of estimation according to the 
town's agreement, for making a rate' for the payment of the carpenter's work in 
building the meeting house." , 

" Ibid. ' ,' ■ 

•Ibid. '\ ''- , ._ _ 

* See Hist, of the County of "Westchester, vol l.'page 143. 


vote, " That the address which is drawn up to be presented 
unto His Excellency, concerning indockin (inducting) a minister, 
the said inhabitants have and do agree that the officers of said 
town shall asign (sign) the said address in the, bebalf of them- 
selves and tjie rest of the inhabitants or any of our adjacent 

The Governour, however, refused to induct a dissenting minis- 
ter, on the ground that such a one was not qualified to accept, and 
that the law intended no other than an orthodox minister, for if 
otherwise, nothing but confusion would ensue about the dispo- 
sal even amongst the Disseriters themselves. 

The inhabitants of Eastehester finding the Governour bent up- 
on the settlement of a natiotlal ministry, next attempted fo annul 
the act of 1693, by making themselves a distinct parfsh from 
Westchester. This appears by the following extiact from the 
town records : — "April I Ith, 1699, it was agreed upon, by a full 
and free vote, to petition unto His Excellency and Honourable 
Council and General Assembly, in behalf of ourselves and the 
rest of our neighbours in the Yonkers and Mile Square, to de- 
sire that we maybe taken from ^^estchester and have liberty 
to call a minister of our own." 

On the 26th of December, 1699, it was resolved, at a public 
meeting held in Eastehester, " To haste and erect the meeting 
house, and- that it shall be finished at or before the 31st of May, 
in the year of our Lord, 1700,and in case the said work be not 
finished, that then John Drake and Jeremiah Fowler shall set 
men at work and finish the said work on the town account."* 
. At d meeting of the inhabitants, 20th of February, 1700, we 
find them setting aside a small quantity of land as a provision 
for a minister, according to their constant method, and which 
was used in all other townships within the Colony, as fol- 
lows: — "The said inhabitants have laid out one piece of land 

• Town Records. " By an get of Assembly passed this year, the trustees of eaeh 
town were to make a yearly rate for building a church where wanting, &c." 3 
Will. 111. A. D. 1699. .Laws of N. Y. vol. 1. Chap. 83, p. 37. 


■containing 18 rod in length, and easterly 5 rod, and at the 
western end it is 5 rod in breadth ;• the said land is set, lying 
and being in Bastchester, 1 rod off from John Lancaster's mea- 
dow, and at the west end half a rod by the home meadow of 
the said John Lancaster's, which land' is for the use of the 
town for a parsonage lot, which said lot was laid out by the 
consent of Mr. Thos. Pinckney, justice of the peace, and Richard 

■Shute, as witnesseth that the said land is given to be so 
ner (near) his meadow. 

The mark of John ^ Lancaster.*^'* 

Upon this occasion it was agreed " That the minister's salary 
be paid by rate for time to come." 

. The same year,^ " Ten>cres of land were voted to Nichblas 
Goncklin, in consideration that he shall part with tis house, 
home lot and orchard, for the use of a minister, in case the said 
minister do- accept of this abovesaid -house and home lot." Mr, 
Henry Fowle;- at the Same time was directed to "Write abetter 
to Mr. Morgan to come over and see whether be doth well ap- 
prove of what the inhabitants have done for his maintenance."!" 

It was also "Agreed to pay Mr. Morgan J^SjO cHrrent, for 
salary,^' which sum was ordered to be raised upon all rateable 

At a public town meeting, held about this tipie, "Mr. Joseph 
Morgan did de&lare, that he did not like that home lot of 
-Nicholas Concklin's, and also that the said piece of land is not a 
whole home lot."" 

l/pon the 12th o^ June, 1700,, twenty acres of land were voted 
to Mr. Morgan. 

" At a public town meeting, called by order of the inhabitants, 
Oct. 4th, 1700i the said inhabitants directed Mr. Henry. Fowler 
and Richard Shute, (with the rest of the, intended church,) to 

* Town Records. 
' Town Ree. 

• Town Rec, vol. i. p. 4. 


write unto the Reverend ministers in New England concerning 
the ordination,: they having the assistance of the Rev.- Mr. 
Morgan ; also, that Mr. John Pinckney, Henry Fowler .and 
Richard Shute, shall write unto His Excellency for his approba- 
tion, that he will be pleased to induct (the word induct is mark- 
ed out in the original MS. and the letters a pp written over it) 
our minister, the Rey. Joseph Morgati." At the same time " Joseph 
Drake and Thomas Pinckney were authorized to agree with a 
carpenter to build a pulpit on the town's account." 

Having how obtained the services of a minister, and finding 
the Church pouring in upon the,m, the inhabitants once more 
determined to petition the Assembly for an act to seperate thetti 
from Westchester. Whereupon, at a town meeting, 14th of 
October, 1700, " Mr. Henry Fowler, sen., was authorised by the 
inhafaitarus to proceed .to New- York to petition the General 
Assembly, for, the calling atld .settling a minister with ourselves, 
and that we may be freed from Westchester in the ministry." 

12th of King William 111,! A. D., 1700, occurs an act of the 
General Assembly, entitled as follows : — 


' Passed the Wth of October, nOO. 
" Whereas, hy an Act of the General Assembly of this Province, e^title(J : — An 
Act for seltHilg a ministry and raising a maititenance for thenj in the City of 
New- York, County of Richmond, Westchester and Glueens County, it is amongst 
other things declared and enacted, that the towns of Westchester, Eastchester, 
Lower Yonkers and the Manor of Pelham, in the county of Westchester, should ' 
be a parish together, for the better maintaining of a gpod and sufficient Profestant 
minister ; and, whereat, since the making of said act, it has been found incon- 
Tenient, and to the great discouragemeat of religion and the public worship of 
God, for tl;ie inhabitants of Eastchester to travel to Westchester aforesaid, to be 
present at the preaching of the word of God ; wherefore, the said Inhabitants and 
Freeholders of the town of Eastchester aforesaid, have, by'their humble Petition 
to. the House of Representatives, now convened in General Assembly, most hum- 
bly prayed," that it might be declared and enacted. 

I. And be it Declared and Enacted, by His Excellency, the Governourand 
Council and Representatives, udw convened in General Assembly, and by the 
authority of the same, that the said town of Eas,tchester, in the County' of West- 


Chester be for henceforth, and forever hereafter, separated from the parish of 
■Westchester, Eastchester, Lower Yonkefs tnd the Manor of Pelham, to all in- 
tents, constructions and purposes whatsoeyer ; the, sard act, enBtled An Act for 
settling the ministry and- raisidg a maintenance for them, in the City of New- 
York, County of Richraond, Westchester _,aBd aaeens County, or any other act to 
the contrary hereof in anyways notwithstapding. 

11. And be it FurthBr Enacted, by the authority aforesaid,' that the said Town 
of Eastchester^ in the County of Westchester, be, and is hereby declared to be and 
remain forever a distinct parish from the:parish of Westchester, Eastchester, 
Lower Yonkers and the Manor of Pelham, by the name and style of the parish of 
Eastchester, in the' County of Westchester : Provided, that the Freeholders and 
Inhabitants thereof do maintain a good orthodox Protesldrit mifiister in the said 
town of Eastchester; any law, Usage or custom to the oontralry hereof, in any- 
ways notwithstanding."?. ' " 

March the .6th, 1701, the inhabitants "exchanged 4 rods of 
land with Joseph Morgan, pastor of the Ciiarch of Eastchester." 

Upon the 3rd of April, 170?, John Drake and 1. Thomas 
Pinckney were authorized, "To agree with a carpenter to make 
a pulpif, and set up the gallery and repair the window shut- 
ters, &c.^' . > 

At the same time, John Tompkins, jun., was also chosen " To 
beat the drum constantly,; every Lord's day if occasion require, 
and at other times when it is needful, and to keep the drum in 
repair ; and the said inhabitants do promise to pay him therefor 
9 peace a piece, every one." 

Upon the 19th of November, 1702, the Rev. John Bartow was 
inducted by Govjernour Oombury. into . the parish Oh arch of 
-Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers and the Manor of Pelham, 
notwithstanding all the means used to prevent and disturb his 
settlement by the Independents ; and as no " good orthodox Pro- 
testant minister 'i had been maintained- in this parish, in accord- 
ance with the late act, Mr. Bartow was considered as legally in- 
ducted, and settled over all the rights and appurtenances of West' 
Chester parish, of which the church at Eastchester formed a 
part.- This fact the Independetrts or Presbyterians themselves 
acknowledged by paying their quota of £50 per annum, towards 
Mr. Bartow's support, according to the first settlement in 1693. 

• Laws of New- York, vol. 1, Chap. 90, page 40. 


On the 18th of May, 1703, the inhabitants of Eastchester ap- 
pointed Mr. Thos. Pinckaey an^ Mr. Edmund War^, « To draw 
an obligation with Mr. Joseph, Morgan, minister, for one ye^rj 
for his encouragement, and tp see who will subscribe thereunto 
for the payment of the town." / , 

The following extract, from a letter of Mr. Bartow tb the Sec- 
retary, in 1707, show;^, however, that the inhabitants finally em- 
braced the Church of. England and accepted of him as their 
minister : — 

"' "My Lord Cornbury requested" me to go and preach at East- 
chester; accordingly I went, (though some there had give out 
threatening words, should I dare to come,) but tho' I was there 
very early, and the people had notice of my coming, their Pres- 
byterian minister, Mr. Morgan, had begun service in the meeting 
house, to which I \vent straightway and continued the, whole 
time of- service without interTuptiorl, and in the afternoon I was 
permitted to perform the Church of England service ; Mr. Mof^ 
gan being present, and neither he nor the people seemed tb be 
dissatisfied, and after jsome time of preaching there afterwards, 
they desired me to come oftener ; and I concluded to minister' 
there once a month, which now 1 have done for about three 
ye^rs." ■ , 

In regard to this conformity of the people of Eastchester to 
the Church of England, Mr. Hawltins says: — "Thatth'e popu- 
lation of Eastchester was 400, who being Presbyterians, obtain- 
ed an act, by which they were formed into a separate parisli, 
and obtained a minister of their own persuasion ; but on Mr. 
Bartow'^s coming among them, they were so well satisfied with 
the liturgy and dbctritie of the Church, that the'y, forsook their 
minister arid conformed to the Church of England^" 

In an address to the Venerable and Honourable Society for 
Propagating the Gospel, the following account is given of the 
building of the church at Eastchester : — 

" May it please the Yenerable and Honourable Society for 
Propagating the Gospel,— 

We, whose narhes are subscribed, do hereby certify, that the 


Church of Eastchester was built in the year of our Lord, 1692 
by subscriplion of the inhabhants of said town, and iLt Mr. 
Matthews, a Presbyterian minister, for about thjree. years, and' 
after him Mr. Morgan, a Presbyterian minister, did preach till 
such time as Mr. Bartow began to preach unto us in ihe year 
1703, since which tijme it, has been in his possession, and he 
comes and preaches at Eastchester once iii four 'weeks during 
the Winter, and ,6nce in eight weeks during the space of six 
months in the Summer. 

And We further certify that the town of Eastchester was 
made a distinct parish from Westcliester in the year 1700.'^ 

About- this time the inhabitants addressed theJoUpwing peti- 
tiorito Governour Cornbury, asking for an abatement in their 
apnual quota and thanMng him for directing Mr, Eartow to 
preach among them :— * > 


"The Humble Petition of John Drake, Josepli Drake and William Chadder- 
ton in the-behalf of themselves and the Inhabitants of Eastchester, 

SKeieeth .■'-'■ ' ' , 

That Col. Heathcote, did, at the request of your EScelieriey's Petitioners, 
move, your Excellency to> give directions that what th? Vestry had layd on the 
parish of Westchester for incidental, charges oyer the minister's rate and consta- 
ble's allowance for allo*ing the, same, might be abited from the quoata layd on 
our place, we being burthened with much more than our just propoftioii of that 
tax ; that Col. Heathcote did thereupon inform your Elcellency's Petitioners, that 
your Excellency had been pleased to direct that some of the Justfces which lived, 
without the precincts, shcruld make inquiry into that matter and make repqrt 
thereof to your Excellency, but- the Justices not being able before this time to get 
in the list of Estates was the cause of the delay of tha.t return, so hope your 
Excellency will pardon our not leavying what was layd upon us, by the late Ves- 
try, afldwUl, in your great goodness and justice, protect us from -paying more 
than dur fair and equal proportion, which we shall always most readily do, 
so long as your Excellency shall- think fitt to -continue us joyned to that Parish. 
We are exceeding thankful that your Excellency hath been pleased to direct'Mr. 
Bartow to preach sometimes amongst us, for we assure your Excellency that 'tii 
our earnest desires to come under the, Regulation of the Church of England, as 
by law establislved, and so is our minister, Mr. Morgan, for, whichreason we are 
desirous to continue him aniongst us, and maintaine him by subscription untill 
sach limes as your Excellency shall thinkfitt to have the parishes in the County 
otherwisedivided, w-hichare at present sO .very inconvenient, that not half of the 


people can have the benefit of the ministry. Your Excellency will find, by the re- 
turn of the Justices, that our divident of the late rate ought not to ,have>een 
more than £1 5s. 6d., and the Vestry have layd £\b 10s. upon, us, and there being" 
£1 10s. layed on the" parish, besides the Minister's rate and th* Constables's al- 
lowance for leavying the same,. under the name of incidental chare-es, and that 
some, by the inequality of the division falling wholly upon us; we therefore, 
most humbly implore , your, Excfellenoy to direct that we may pay no more at this 
time than ^8, and for the futjre only our equal divident, and as in duty bound,, 
your Excellency's Petitioners shall Ever Pray, &c. 

^TouN Drake, 
JoBEfH D'Ka;cb, 
k "William Chatterton." • 

The foregoing petition shovvS conclusively, that ,although 
East<;hester had been declared a seperate parish from Westches- 
ter, as early as 1700, yet the Colonial Governors still considered 
it as joined to ^hat parish according to the prior act of 1693, 

This the iflhabitants also acknowledged by the annual election 
of three Vestrymen for the precinct and paying the yearly rates 
laid on the parish. The choice of a minister, however, EUid ■ 
providing for his support, had been lodged by the act of 1693, in 
the Vestry, and the choice of a Vestry in the people. Into the 
church and freehold of the parsonage lot (as it was then styled) 
of Eastchester, Mr. Bartow, "had been legally presented by the 
Vestry and inducted by tTieGovernour's mandate, as we haVe al- 
ready seen. 

At a rneetingjheld by the Justices and Vestry of Westchester, 
the l^thofDecenaber, 1705, "John Smith, of Eastchester, consta- 
ble, in the year 1704, proved the paymentof£9 17s. 6d., which 
is the full proportion of said Town for that year." The Vestry 
agreed that, " Mr. Bartow, if he pleased, shall preach at East- 
chester every fourth Sabbath day, which was condescended toby 
Mr. Bartow." 

Upon the 25th, of Febr-uary, 1711-12, "at a town meeting the freeliplders of Eastchester, the said freeholders did 
qgreeby vote, that Judge Drake, Isaac Taylor, and Moses Fow- 
ler, should bo empowered to constitute and hire a man or men, 

■ Dog. Hist, of N. Y. vol. III. 92-8. 


as they shall think proper, to repair and finish the meeting 
house and making a pulpif ia the same; and also to have 
power to niake a rate on all and every of the freeholders and 
inhabitants of the said' town, that shall amount to as much 
money as shall defray the said charges." Oti the 20th of Marcl^ 
followihg, this resolution was repealed and the same men em- 
powered to *' Repair the meetitig house, in making a pulpit and 
pew in k, and also seal and make seats in the same so far as the 
boards that are already bought will go." 

The next year the Rev. John Bartow contributed £9 6s. 6d. 
towards r-dctrfying the pew's and seats in East and Westchester 
Churches. , 

In 1718, Mr. Bartow inforins the Society that "some efforts 
were being made to introduce a P'resbyteri&,n minister at East- 
chesteri This must have been the celebrated William Tennent, 
"who officiated here for a short time only,, from whence he re- 
moved to Bedford. 

. [extract.] 
Westchester, in the Province of New- York, 

Nov. 18th, 1718. 
Worthy Sir, 

" I am sorry that I have occasion to acquaint the Society that 
there are endeavours hovv on foot to bring in a Presbyterian 
minister at Eastchester. Some of their main agents have been 
with me and signified their design, from which I laboured to dis- 
suade them, but in vain, for they told me if I would undertake 
to come and preach every Jjord's day in their tOwri, they would . 
be contented, otherwise,, they would have a minister of their 
own. ' This has bred a division amongst the people, and some 
are for it and some against it, which schism, I think, would 
effectually be ended if they had, a minister of the Church of 
England to reside amongstthem,"* , 

Mi. Bartow, writing to the Secretary, in 1725, says : — " The 

New York MSS.from Archives at FulhamjTol.i. 555. (Hawks.) 



pulpit and wainscoat of the church at Eastchester, are since 
decently painted, and a new gallerybnilt, arid the Presbyterian 
minister when he comes not permitted to, officiate therein." 

Upbn the death of Mr. Bartow, the Rev. Thomas Standard, 
was inducted " To fhe rectory of Westchester, the glebe th'ereiof, 
and to all the rights and appurtenances of the same." 

Ill the year 1728, Mr. Standard officiated every other Sunday 
at Eastchester and publicly catechised the children. » * 

" During Mr. Standard's ministry here^ some trouble-mating 
spirits arose, who sought to upset the action of those Presby- 
terians, who joined the Church in Mr. Bartow's time, and get 
possession of the old building. But religious contracts were 
found to be as binding as civil bargains. Mr. Standard says, 
"The Church at Eastchester waS supposed to be included among 
the rights and appurtenances of W"es[tcliester parish: that Mr." 
Bartow was legally presented and inducted into the church, 
and died possessed of it ; that he too was legally presented and 
inducted, and therefore laid claim to it as his own proper right 
exclusive of theni, and so kept them out of it.'"'' 

In 1744, Mr. Standard, who had now taken up his residence 
in Eastchester, writes to the Secretary as follows : — 



Eastchester, May \ith, 1744. 
Rev. Sie, 

" My Brother Taiighan informs me, that Archbishop Tennison 
hath kft upon his will, £50 per annum, to be paid to the'oldest 
missionary, being an Englishman, which missioriary he saith I 
am, and that it will be necessary for me to go home in order to 
obtain it, which if I do, and apply to niy Lord Chancellor, he 
doubts not of success ; and he further adds, that Mr. Talbot re- 
ceived the same during his time. If you, good sir, know any 

* Printed Abstracts of Yen. Soc. 

' See Rev. Henry E. Duncan's Jubilee Sermon for 1851. 


thing of that affair, be. pleased to communicate it to me and to 
intercede for leave for me to cbme home. 

I am yours and the Venerable Society's 
very humble servaat, 

Thowlas' Standard."* 

The following year he informs the Society, that the parishes 
of East and Westchest&r are in a peaceable and growing state. 

As church business was at this time transacted with tow-n 
matters, wq find tb'e rhhabitants electing asexton for Eastches- 
ter. On April the 1st, 1755, it was resolved, "That Richard 
^(evens be appointed graye-digger for the town, for the year 
ensuing, and to dig a grown persons grave for six shillings and 
three shillings forchildren," On the :7th of April, 1756, the town 
appointed the same iijdividual grave digger and sexton for the 
town. ' 

In 1758, Mr'. Standard presented the bell td thechurch, which 
still summons the parishioners^ every Lord's day to the house of 
ptayer, and .by it, " He beip'g dead, yet speaketh." 

At theeoinrnencement'of this year, the aged missionary was 
called to mourn Over the grave of an affectiona!te wife, who 
came to her'death in a terrible manner, as appears' by thp fol- 
lowing extract taken from. the New- York Post Boy, of February 
6th, 1758:—" We have the following rrfost-schockjng and mel- 
ancholy account from Eastchester, viz:— that on Friday morn- 
ing, the 27th of January, Mrs. Mary /Standard, aged abgiit 
seventy years, wife to the Rev. Doctor Thomas Standard, of 
that place, was found dead on the chimney hearth of one of the 
apartments in the house; having her head, the chief part of both 
her breasts, with her left arm and shoutder entirely burnt to 
cinders. It appears that the unfortunate old gentleman and his 
more unfortunate old lady, had, upon some necessary occasion 
thevvening before, agreed to-lay separate ; and the Doctor taking 

« New York' M^S. from Archives, at Fulham, vol. ii. 152, (Hawk's). ".Iiil73.S 
-Mr. Betpech was schoolmaster "a't Eastehesier." 


his leave, went to ted, leaving his wife sitting before the fire, 
where, it is imagined, the' poor old gentlewoman miist either 
have been seized with a fit, or in rising from her chair, had 
fallen into the fire, and being undoubtedly rendered unable to 
move herself, she became the most moving spectacle imaginable . 
to the most affectionate and tender husband, who first discover- 
ed her in the morning," 

The Rev. Thomas Standard died at Bastchester, in January, 
1760, at the advanced age of nearly eighty, and was buried by. 
the side of his wife, beneath the' chancel of theold. church, on 
the Green. In 1S18, their bodies were removed by order of the 
Vestry and interred under the comniunion table of the present 

The Rev. John Milner succeeded Mr. Standard, under the 
auspices of the Venerable Propagation Society, and was indac- 
ted rector of the- parish .Church of Westehester, incUiding the 
several districts of Westchester, Eastchester, Yonkers and the 
Manor of Pelham, on the I2th,bf Junes IT'Gl. 

The following extract from the town records relates to .the 
parsonage lot, described in 1695, as "Lying upon the Green in 
Eastchester :" — " At a public town meeting called by the justices 
of -the town tolenquire into several .pncroachments on lands in 
said town^ held in Eastchester, on Monday, the 30th day of 
August, 1762, it M'as agreed, that these :men (Jonathan Fowler, 
Chailes Vincent, John Fowler and Joseph Drake) should, regu- 
late the parsonage, and to take a bond of Isaac Lawrence of in- 
demnity, to deliver up the same to the to.vvn again at his de- 

It was during Mr. Milner's ministry that the foundation of 
the present church was laid. In a letter to the Secretary of the 

' » Their remains were found in a good stale of preservation, but crumbled to 
pieces on exposure to tlie atmosphere. Tradition says, that Mr. Standard, gave 
certain latidb to the Church on condition that the remaiiis of himself and wife 
should be removed whenever a new edifice should be built. 
* Town Records of Eastchfister.., 


Venerable : Society, dated Westchester, 1764, lie says:— " The 
people of Eastchester have laid the.found^tiori of a new church 
of stojie,, seventy one feet by eighty-eight, in the room pf a small 
decayed waoden building erected ia the infancy of the settle- 

In the year 1765, Mark Christian was appointed sexton for the 
town, an office which, he subseqiently held under the trustees 
of the church. Upon the 1st of April', of that year, he was 
directed, "To take care of the Green, to see that hogs don't dig 
and to dig graves, an;d to find a good bier."a ^ ' , 

On the resignation of the- Rev. Mr. Milnerj theRev. Dr. Sea- 
bury, afterwards' Bishop of Connecticut, and" the first Ameri- 
can Bishop, was inducted rectorof the parish Church of' West- 
chester and its pr^cijiots, 3rd,of Dec, 176J. June 23th, 1767, 
he writes tO: the Secretary in these words: — " At Eastchester, 
whi<;h is four miles distant, the congregation is gerieraUy larger 
than at Westchester. The old church in which they meet, as 
yet, is very cold. They have erected and just completed the 
roof of a large weh built stone church^on which they have ex- 
pelided, tKey say, £700.currency; but their ability seems, ex- 
hausted, and I fear I sbali never see it fiiiished. I applied last 
winter to his Excellency:,, Sir Henry Moore, for 3,' brief, in their 
favour, but the petition was rejected." 

In 1777j he wrote to the Society :-^" With regard to my own 
mission, I can only say, fhatit 'is utterly ruihed." Services had 
been suspended for some time in Eastchester, and the congrega- 
tion dispersed. At tiiiB period the church was used as an hos- 
pital, and subsequently served the purpose of a coiirt house. 
The following ?item- occurs in the rebord.s of the Court of Com- 
mon- Pleas:— "At a Court of Oy^r and Termmer and General 
Jail Delivery, held at the Church at Eastchester, in and for the 
County of Westchester, on Tuesday, the 12th day of June, in 

• At a town meeting held 7ih of Apiil, 1767, " It was agreed, that- Dr. Wright 
should molested itihis burring yard on said Qrregn in saidXowji."^Town 


the year of our Lord, 1787, present, the Honourable B-ichard 
Morris, Esq., Chief- justice of the Supreme Court of Judicature; 
for the State of New- York, Steplien Ward, Jonathan J. Tomp- . 
kins, Ebenezer S. Burling, and Benjamin Stevenson, Justices of 
Oyer and Terminer and General jail Delivery for the County 
of Westchester, <Sr/C." 

St. Paul's Church, Eastqhester, was first incorporated on the 
12th of March,1787, in pursuance of an- Act of the Legislature, 
entitled : — 


Passed 6Lh AprU, 1784. , 

" The prearable of this act reciteS' the 38th article of the Constitution. ' ' 

Article 1. — Directs that not less than three or exceeding nine in' number of 
Trustees, are to be .fleeted, to transact all affairs relaliye to the temporalities 
of their respective churches. 

Article 4.— Whether the same ponsistof larids, tenements, &c., and whether^the- 
same shall have been given, granted ordevisedfo and f&r their use, and they ahd . 
their sjiccessprs shall lawfully have, hold, use, exercise' aTid enjoy all. and, sin- 
gular the churches, meeting houses, paTsopages,''burying places and lands there- 
unto belonging,, with the hereditaments and appurtenances heretofore by the' said 
church occupied or enjoyed, by whatsoever name or naines, person or persons, as 
if thesaoie were, pui chased and had,LOr to theth given or granted, pr by them or 
any of them used and e|i joyed fpr the uses aforesaid, to them andtheir successors, 
to the sole and only proper use and benefit of them the said Trusteed ahd their 
Successors forever, &c. 

Article. 6.-^Aiid the Trustees are also to regulate and order ^he renting the pews 
in the said churches, and the perquisitesof the said church arising from the bre'a- 
king of the ground in the, ceinetery,, or church yard, aiid in the, churches for 
burying the dead, &c., " 

Under this Act, the following persons were elected Trustees : 

' " The trustees were directed to make an annual report between the 1st of Janua- 
ry, and the 1st of April, to the Chatidellor, or one of the Justices of the Supreme 
Court, or any of the Judges of the, COurt-qr Cortinion Pleas', &.o." Laws of N. 
y.,' nS7,Greenleafs edition. Vol. i. chap, xviii, 71.- ' 


" Thomas Bartow, John Wigght, Isaac Ward, ;Elisha Shute, 
Lewis Guion, and Philip Pell, jun: , 

After t^his incorporation, all management of the Church and at town meetings is dropped. The Church 
now manages her own affairs, her powder and right to do so, be- 
ing fully recognized by the town, for upon the 3d of April, 
1787, prior to the ihcorpdratiorl, it was resolved at town meet- 
ing, " To erect a school house, and to set it on the Green near 
where the stocks formerly stood," but tlji? resolution was never 
carried into effect, because, the Church had beeli incorporated, 
and corisequentry claimed the Green exclusively as her own. Iri 
1790, therefore, it w^s ordered bythetowu, " To build the school 
house oniifoj^w g'ound, by GhaHes Guion's, where it formei;ly 
Stood." Again, at a town meeting in. 1793, itW9.s declared " That 
tlie, burial ground shall, and oi right, ought to belong to the 
Church." After, the election of the Trustees, tod, the sexton 
was always Appointed by the. Church. 

On the lOth of December, 1787, an agreement was entered 
into between a majority of the Trustees of the Episcopal Church 
in'Eastchester, of the one part, and William Heskins, carpeti- 
ter, of the other part, wherein the latter agreed " To erect and 
build a pulpit, r.eadilig desk, and clerk's seat in the said church, 
according to the dimensions in the plan by him exhibited to the 
said TrustMs,,and the form of the pulpit in the church at 
Yonkeirs, 'ii^c." - . - • • , ' 

The Trustees not only anxlious to finish the church, biit to 
obtain the services of a suitable' minister, addressed the follow- 
ing letter to the Rev. Mr. Moore, afterwards Bishop of the Dio- 
cese I — 


Eastchest&r, I5ih Dec, 1787. 

Rev. Sir, 
■''We have this day disposed of the pew ground in our church 
in a manner that promises success to our religious endeavours- 
We have also aprbspect of completing our church in a respectable 



manner, and New Rochelle will join us in engaging a^ gentleHiali 
of the profession of the gospel to officiate in the two places. 
From a reliance on your pious wishes to promote the Christian 
Religion, we beg leave that whenever a gentleman of character, 
and qualified, in your opinion, for our' purpose, may come to 
your linovvledge, and- whose condition may be adapted to our 
sitiiation, that you'll please to signify the, same to lis. 
We are, Rev. Sir, witli much respect, 

yourhumble servants. 

The Trustees." 

In 1789, the Trustees appointed Marcus Christian for one 
year, bell ringer of the church-, for which service he was al- 
lowed ^4 per aunum. * 

The following year, the inhabitants of Eastchester appear to 
have associated themselves in th? ministry, with the parish of 
Yonkers, for, "at a meeting of the Triistees,, March 20th, 1790) 
Mr. Pell, one of the Trustees, produced a letter directed to the 
Right Rev. Samuel Provoost, D. D., Bishop of the State, of 
New- York, requesting the favor of his visiting the church in 
Eastchester next month, in order to ordain the Rev. Mr. Cooper, 
a priest for this and Yonkers church." On this occasion, 
William Crawford, was requested to render an account of the 
rent due the church from ,him, for the glebe. 

In, 1792, we find Jhe town defining the boundaries necessary 
for the church, for a yard and burial ground ; accommodating 
the remainder, of what was called the Church Green, (the ^ite of 

* At a tneeting of the Vestry on the 7th of May, 1791, " Marcus Christian, the 
seiton to the church in Eastcliester, was sent for and examined respectiiig the bell's 
being xung on Saturday, the 30th of -April, on the family of James Bogart's mo- 
ving but of this place, which charge he denied^ and, in his examination, said he 
was lame in bed, and was not at the church that day. He was further examined 
on his forrner conduct, -on his selling licure in the,belfrie of the church,' on a 
training day, which he acknowledged. Whereupon they did agree, he was not 
worthy to keep the keys of the church, or to be employed as sexton ; upon which 
he delivered the key and was dismissed the service."- 

In 1791 Janies Pell was elected sexton and bell ringer. He was succeeded 
by Benjamin Bartow in 1794. 


the old church, and burial place of one of its riiinisters) to pub- 
lic occasions, and appointing trustees to. carry the same into exe- 
cution, notwithstanding the church had been in possession ex- 
clusively for nearly one hundred.'years. 

" At a town meeting held iYi Eastchester, 3(J of April, 1793, it was agreed' as 
follows:— is also agreed by vote atthistown meeting, that there shall be 
three trustees .qhosen, who shall have power, and .are hereby authorized to affix 
and ascertain, in conjunction with the trustees Of the Episcopal Church of th^ 
town of Eastchestetr, the quantity and boundaries of the land necessary for said 
church and burying ground, and such boundaries when so fixed and determined on 
shall be declared, in a certificate by the §aid trustees of the to^ro, which is now 
to be chosen, under their hands an^l seals, and delivered to tl(e Trustees of said 
Church, which certificate shall forever hereafter operate as a bar to any claim of 
this town to- the, lands' within th^ said described boundaries. Power was also 
given to the trustees tolease out any of the public lands and .tenements to the 
bestadyantage. The meeting proceeded to nominate andchpose thre^ men a* 
trustees of said town, viz : Neheijaiah Marshall, B^enjamin Morgan, and James 
Morgan. - ' ' - 

The following certificate appears in the town books immedi- 
ately after the above resolution :— 

"-iP7iereas,-we; the.sub8Gribers, by a vote and order of the town meeting of the 
inhabitants of the town of Eastchester,: in the , County of Westchester, lield in 
said town on the 3d day of April,- 1793, -were aiithofized a'nd empowered to affix 
and ascertain, in cobjuhction with the Trustees bl the , Episcbpal Church in 
Eastchester -aforesaid, the boundaries and quantityof land necessary and conve- 
nient for said church, and for a burial place adjacent to the same. 

And. whereas, we, the said subscifibers, having on the. day pf thedate hereof, 
met with, a majority of the trtfstees of said church, and having proceeded to 
view the premises, and- in order to furnish the said church with suiEci'ency of 
ground for a yard and burial ground, and;also^to accommodate the remainder of 
what is called the Green,, to. public occasions.. Do, iix pursuance of the trust re- 
posed in us by the vote or orsler abpvenientipned,, hereby certifiy, that the said 
trustees of the church aforesaid shall, ahd o'f right ought to possess' the ground 
cPmprehended within the limits following, fol: the' use and purposes aforesaid, 
tbafis to say :— Beginningf at the distance of 34J feet directly north-east, from the 
north-easlr corner of said Church, from thence extending in a straight line wes- 
terly, observing the distance of SS feet from the frbnt of said church, untilit comes 
to the edge of the bank between the uplaild and salt marsh, thence southerly by 
the said banlj and marsh, until it comes to the fence by the salt meadows, at a 
motiument stone, from thence easterly along safd fence, until aline be drawn par- 
allel from the first mpntipned boundaries, at the distance of 20. feet frotn the east 
siiie of said church, will tpuch. the said fence, and along that line to the first men- 
tioned bounds. Nevertheless, alivays reserving to the proprietors of salt meadowi 


adjoining said land, and ffiose who have meadows southeHy of sai^ land, tlieir 
usual right of way in goinp to and corning from said meadows with their hay, 
through the land abovedescriljed. ' 

Witness our hands and seals, the 28th day of April, 1792. 

Be.v. Morgan, [l.s.]'~ 

James Morgan, [l. s.] 

Nehkmiah Marshall, [l. s.J 
Witnesses, William Crawford, Dorcas Crawford."* 

Now, although the origia of the first church edifice in the town 
of Bastchester is clearly traceable, to the action of the town, 
yet it is very evident that it was first commenced in 1692-3, ^y 
a tax levied on Churc'imen and Dissenters, promiscuously, ac- 
cording, to theirreal estate, and not finished until the a"ct of 
1699 was passed, which provided, that " The trustees of each 
town were to make a yearly rate, for building a church where 
wanting." According to the principles of common law, at this 
period, meeting houses ierected by public tax belonged to the 
church established by law. HeOcei we find Mr. Bartow and his 
successors after their establishment and induction, by the then 
Governours, claiming the chapel or .meeting house at East- 
chesteras their own, and not only so, but keeping the Dissenters 
out of it. The parsohage or glebe with all "its rights and appur- 
tenances was lijcewise voted for public purposes, and belorjged 
to the rector ex-officio, for, say the rules of common law, con-' 
cerning glebes, "Every church, of cominon right is entitled to 
house and glebe " and " After induction!-the' freehold of the glebe 
is in the parson." Whilst the wardens and vestrymen, who wer6 
the choice of the people, elected the rector and provided for his, 
support, the rate-payers appear to have .regulated the burial 
ground, voted repairs to the church when, necessary, and ap- 
pointed the sexton, as w*as done in many other parish.fis. This 
was the state of things prior to the Revolution. After p^ace was 
established and New- York was finally organized as a State; an 

» Town Records.' . "In 1808, the town granted one .hundred dollars to be laid 
out in fencing the burial ground of the church of Eastchester, and supervisors 
and overseers Were direct6d to see it expended." " At the satne time a vote was 
taken to alter the righ!t of way through the burial graund'to the verge thereof, 
and that of tke salt meadows belonging to the town." 


act was passed in 17S,4 for the incorporation. of religions socie- 
ties, an.d under this act, we have seen, the chUrch at Eastches- 
ter was incorporated. Now this act .conferred on trustees the 
right, " Lawfully, to have, hold, use, exercise and enjoy all and 
singular the churches, meeting houses,- parsonages, burying 
places eLfld lands, therenato belonging, with; the hereditaments 
and appurtetiances heretofore by the said church occupied or 
enjoyed, (fee." Whatever rights, therefore, the church possessed 
prior to the Revolution, -were still continued to her by the act of 
1784. : -' ' ' v" 

Subsequently,- however, to the joi-nt action of the trustees 
" The Chiarch appointed three persons to unclose the land set off 
to the church by' the town," as appears from the following res- 
olutions : — I J 

. -'■."■' ' / 

"At a meeting of the, trustees ,hel(i at the lipnsp of Wm. Grawfprd; on the t2th of, 
March, 1793, it was i;esolvedas;follovys : JRisolved, that Messrs, Stephen Ward, Lan- 
caster Uuderhill, and Ahraham Valentine, be, and tliey arp hereby authorised and 
empoWered to inolosB the- land belonging to -the church in Eastchester, as laid out 
anda^tfrtained by trustees chosen on the part of the town of Eastchester, and the 
trustees wf the chiirch, by a -boa'rd fence oil th« whoJe front or north stde thereof, 
composed of one boarii at the bottom and.slitted abo,ve, and that, the same be of the 
height of four feet and a half ; and the ot&er parts of said land to be inclosed by a 
post and rail fence, or sach board fence as aforesaid, aijd that this said persons com-' 
plete the same aS^eonvenienUy may b3, &e."_ - ■ ' ' 

" R^siflved further, t\iB.t the above mentioned persons tahe'and receive the profits 
thereof by- ploughing, for tyPo seasons, any of the said land, except that within the- 
compass of the burial place, -and after thatio take the grass growing out of the said 
landby p2;sturing and mowing Ihe same, and rendisr an, account, yearly to the said 
trustees pf such profits, "until a full cqinpensation be made by the use thereof for their 
trouble ajid expense ill fencing the said. laiid."» 

The presuniptipn is, that tlje trustees of 'the' church -supposing 
tbeirititle to the ground in question, invalidated cither by the 
reorganizatiou'of the Churchill 1.787, or of the town'in 1788, or 
perhaps of hoth, acted as the recipient of the same from the 
town, and wisely asserted no claini. It is certain that her action 
in 1793 did not weaken the -title she possessed in any land , 

■ Church Records, commenoiog A. D. 1787. 


rightfully -belonging to her ; whilst the effect of the certificate^ 
as declared in, the resolution of the town before qupted, was to 
be forever a, bar to any claim on the part of the tt)wn to the 
lands set oif.* 

This'church was again incorporated on the 4th of October, 
1795, by the style and' title of " St. Paul's Ohurch in the 
Town op Eastchester,"'' in pursuance of an Act passed for 
the relief of the Protestant Episcopal Church, -on the 17th of 
March, previous. Upon this occasion, William Popham and 
Lailcaster Underbill were elected church war^^ri's; Philip Pell, 
Lewis Guion, Isaac Ward, John Reed,. Isaac Guion, Abraham 
Valentine, William Pinckney and William Crawford^ yestryr 

In 179S, the connection between this parish and Yonkers was 
dissolved," and ari association formed with Westchester iu order 
to procure a minister. Uponlhe 9th M March, 1799, Mr. Isaac 
Wilkins, then in deacon'sorders, was called to officiate as min- 
ister of the united parishes of West and Eastchester. 

In 1801 the Vestry addressed the following letter to. the Rec- 
tor, Wardens and Vestrymen of Trinity Ohurch, New- York: — 


" The wardens aiid vestrypien 6f St. Paul's chiirch at Eastchestet, iu the County 
of 'Westchester, fiom a fifm belief of the disposition of Ihe-corporation of tho Trin- 
ity Church taaid and assist their sister Churches in every undertaking or design for 
encouragtiig and advaiicing the interest and increase of their respective congrega-, 
tiousj and also from the consideration of their having heretofore extended their lib- 
erality to other Chnrches vifhose cireumstauces were not more . needy, are induced 
to make'i;he following Representation of the situation. qf the said ChuYch, viz : that it 

■ 3ee Report to the Hustles of the town of Eastchester. as to {he-title to the bu- 
rying ground attached to St. Paul's Church at Eastchester, by Renssalafir Ten Broeck, 
N. Y. 185.S. I 

■• County Rec. Religious Soc. Lib. A. 10, 11, 12. 

" Mr. Cooper's farewell sermon was delivered iu St. Paul's Church, June 16th, 1798, 
from 2 Cor. xiii, 11, In the course of it he ^Undes to nine years of service at Eastches- 


Was built some few years before the Revolution, bat left irafinished. That by the depre- 
dations commonly attendant thereon, it was greatly injured, the, wooden part of it be- 
ing taken away, whereby -the walls were exposed arid so much impaired, that short- 
ly after the return of peace, tbe little remaining part of the former congregatiou 
exerted their best, the war having enfeebled their abilities, to put the church in some 
sortof order for public worship, and engaged a minister, and in cqujurictioU with 
Westchester do stilt retain one who promises by his talents as a teacher, with an 
exemplary conduct, to promote tli* cause of religion and enlarge the congregation, &e." 

In April) 1817, the 

succeeded Mr. Wilkins as minister of this parish. He was 
the son of Philip Kearny, whose grandfather, Michael , Kearny, 
emigrated from Ireland to this country in 1706. He was born 
at Newark, N. J. 22nd of August, 1791, entered Columbia Col- 
lege in 1808 and graduated Bachelor and Masterof Arts in 1812. 
In 1816 he was' ordained deacon, and the year' following Priest, 
by the Right Rev.. John H. Hobart, and soon afterwards com- 
menced his labors here.. In 1821, he relinquished the rector- 
ship of this parish, and confined himself to the Church at New 
Rochelle, to which behefice he was called 'in 1819. Sometime 
in 1823, be resigned the charge of the latter, arid accepted a 
call to St. Mary's Parish, Maryland, from y^hence he removed 
to St. John's Church, Canandaigua, West New-York, and in 
1828 took charge' of St. Paul's Church, Red Hook, Duchess 
County, of which he remained rector until the day of his death. 
He died 8th of May, 1844. His remains were brought to New- 
York arid interred iri the family vault at St. Mark's .Ohurch in 
the- Bowery. 

Upon the resignation of Mr. Kearny, the 

from the Diocese of New Jersey, -Was elected rector of the 
parish. He continued faithfully to discharge the duties of his 
office both here and in New Rochelle, until the 14th of October, 
1826, when. he, was succeeded by the 


for whose successors, see list of rectors. 


The first delegates from this parish to the Diocesan Conven- 
tion, in 1787, were Phihp Pell, Sen., and Thomas Bartow, 

• We have previously shown that the present church edifice 
was erected in 17fi^rby the inhabitants of this town. Situated 
in a pleasant valley, bordering thei Aqiieanouncke, it presents 
from the neighboring hills a very picturesque appearance. The 
building is remarkable for the, solid character of its masonry 
the angles of the edifice being ornamenteU with rustic quoins, 
the windows and doors also having rustics. A. vestry and school 
room have just been built, opening into the east end of the church. 
On the west end, is a neat, square tower of three stages, with 
narrow lights, terminating in an octangular lantern, containing a 
bell which bears the following inscription : — ■ "The Gift of the 
Rev. Thomas /Standard, 1758. , Lester 4* Paek^ fecit "^ 

Immediately above the tower door are, ins(?iibed the initials of 
the principal benefactors, viz. : — P. R. P. — P. P. — D. V. — also a 
tablet of red sand stone, bearing the dat« of erection, 17tj5. 
The whple edifice' has recently, undergone considerable repairs; 
a new chancel arrangement made; the walls painted in- frescoe, 
and the church newly seated. It deserves to be mentioned that 
the pulpit;iand reading desk, were originally placed between the 
two south windows. Beneath the chancel floor repose there- 
mains of the Rev. Thomas Standard, former rector of the par- 
ish, and Mary, his wife. In the gallery is a fine toned organ, 
presented by George Rapalye, Esq., in 1833, at a cost of $800. 
The chandalier and sheds were also iiis gift; 

The communion silver consists of aflaggon,four chalices and 
paten. The former bears the following inscription : — " To St. 
PUul's Church, Eastchester, N. Y. In memory of Mrs. Mary 
Grigg,^ obt. Jan. 2d, 1844, ^'71 years. 

The chalices are inscribed as follows :— 1st. " The gift of 

' During (he Revolutionary War the bell and prayer book, formely used by 
the Missionari'5s,of the Ven. Prop. Soc, were buried for s^fe keejjing, on the farm 
known as the old Ross place, and now owned by E. C. Halsey, Esq. 

'• This lady was the daughter of Joshua Pell, Esq., grandson of Thomas Pell, 
.econd Lord of the Manor of Pelham. 

■^ ♦ J\^ '^* 

St. Paul's Churcli Eastchester— Erected A. D. 1765. 

St. Jolm's Churcli, Yonkers— Erected A. D. 1753. 

[To lace pag« 383.] 


Fr J ' 

ederick Van Cortlandt, St. Paul's^ Church, Eastchester, A. D. 

1829." 2d and 3d, marked "X /S."* Aih,'' St. Paul's ChurclM 
Eastchester, N. Y.,from Mrsi. John Quincy Adams, 1829." This 
chalice is not' only rendered valuable by the distinguished lady 
who gave it, but by the nielancholy story associated therewith.'' 
- In the old church book, occurs the followitig memorandum: 
— r'' To cash paid the Rev. Mr. Cooper, to buy a communion cup, 
£1 15 7, March 18th, 1793." Near the church is the rectory, 
built by subscription in the year 1849 ; it is of native stone with 
pointed gables, and forms quite a pretty object when viewed 
from the church Green. Upon the la:ttCr, between the. ancient 
locust trees and burial grotmd; formerly stood the old church, 
built by the Independents about 1693. This edifitie, construct- 
ed of wood, was destroyed by fire at, an early period of the 
Revolutionary War. 

The church yard which lies on the south and west side of 
the church, is one of the most extensive in the county. 


M. V. D, I. P. D. NOVE I D I D 


14. ETH. DAY. 1724. 1714 

M, O. D. Ye 27. 17;26— a. A. AV. Ye 1730— JOSEPH. DRAKE. 
DESESED. MARCH. THE. 16. DAY. 1731. JN. THE. 704- 
THOMAS. PINCKNEY. DIED. Ye. 1. 1732. EG. 71— HERE. 
ED. 11. DAY.OF. MARCil. 1755. AG'D. ABOUT. 75. YEARS 
—I. O. D. FEB, 1746-0. H. HORRED. UECES. ID. Ye 
YEAR. 1755—1. 4- O. DE. JULY. Ye 25. 175 —HERE LY- 

* Ann, daughter of Jamfes Smith, Esq., whose 'brother, Cols William Smith, 
married a daughter of President Adams, and resided on the 'Jloss place in this 
town. - , 

•i The son of this lady being washed overboard from a vessel in the Sound, was 
found by one of the church Wairdens, and brought to this church for interment. 


IN: THE: 51: YEAR: OF: HIS: AGE: 1747— E. W. O. 
NOVERBER— M. A -f C. JAN 25. 1764— F. O. DEC. 12— 

Mourn for your country, she lias lost a friaiid, 
Who did her rights and liberties defend ; 
May rising patriots Iseep those rights secure, 
And hand them down to latest ages pure. ' 
Mourn too, ye friends and relatives who knew 
His worth, his kindness, and his love to you ; 
But duty bids us 'all resign, and say, ~ 
Thy will be done, who g^ve and took away. 

On a small marble obelisk is the following : — 

' ' to thq memory of the 

only s6u of the late Mrs. L. C. Palmer, 
who departed this life 
on the 15th of November, 1843, 
in the 37th year of his age, 
and the 8th of his ministry, 7 years of which 
he was Rector of St. John^s' Church, 
Canandaigua, N. Y. 
Rest from thy labours, blessed spirit rest ; 
Tho' early called, Gcfd's ways are always best, 
Nor need this feeble, partial pen declare 
What was thy need, or what tliy labours were. 
' The poor, the desolate, the bad reclaimed. 
Are, mouths for thee, who never wert ashamed 
To own thy Master's cause before the great, 
Jior, heeded frowns, while laying bare their state; 
A weeping flock, like children mourn the loss 
'Of their lov'd Pastor. Stedfast on the Cross 
He kept their gaze—" Watch," was his latest cry, 


"Neither is he that planteth anything, neither he that wat'ereth, bnt God that 
gi*ethth6.increase."—ls«. Cor. 3d CAap.,7tA Terse. ' ' 



19 Nov. 1702, Rev. John Bartow, 01. A, M. pr.tnort. War. andVes 

8 July 1727, " Thos. Standard, 01. A.M. " " 
12 June 1761, « John Milher, 01. A. M. pr. resig., « 

3 Dec. 1766, " Sam. Seabury, 01. A. M. " « 

9 Mar. 1 799,. " Isaac Wilkins, Presb. D. D, pr. mort, « 
Apr. 1817, " Ravaud Kearny, Presb. pr. resig. " 

14 Oct. 1826," " Lawson Oarter, Presb. " « 

1836, " iohn Grigg, Preslb. « " 

25 July 1837, " Robert Bolton, Presb. " , " 

1846, " Edwin Harwood, Presb. " « 

22Aug. 1847, " Henry E. Duncan, Presb. " « 

1 Feb. 1852, " William S. Coffey, Presb,, present incumbent. 


A. D. 1728, Baptisms, — , Communicants, 30, 

1,817, " 45, ■ =' 48, 

1847, " 15, " 35, 

Vl853, " 16, " 46, 

In 171,0, the population of Eastchester, was 314, 

1840,. ''- , ; , « 1,502, 

1850, << ' « 1,680-. 

Charles Guion,. James Morgan, Sen,, Eewis Guion, Sarriuel 
Webb, Stephen Ward, Philip Pell, Minister's seat, William 
Pinkney^ Thomas Bartow, Anthohy Bartow, Gilbert Valentine, 
John G. Wright, Lewis Guion, Charles Morgan, Augustus and 
Frederick Van Oortlandt, Israel Underbill, William Barton," 
Lancaster Uriderhill, Alexander Fowler, David Huestice, Mo- 
ses Fowler, William Stanton, Moses Hunt, Philip Rhinelander, 
Benjamin Morgan, Elisha Shute, Daniel Towiisend, Isaac 
■ '25 ' ■■■■ 



Ward, Daniel Williams, Israel Honeywell, William Fowler, 
Rem Rapelye, William Crawford, Caleb Morgan, Benjamin 
Drake, Theodosius Bartow. 


1795 to 1803. 
William Popham, Lancaster Underbill. , 

Lancaster Underbill, Rem Rapelye. 

. , 1805-7. 
Lancaster Underbill, Jeronemus Alstyne. 

Lancaster Underbill, Lewis Guion, 


Lancaster Underbill, 

Isaac Ward, Seii. 

Lancaster Underbill, William Popbam. 

Jobn Townsend, Pbilemon Fowler. 

' ' 1848-52. 

Pbilemon Fowler, Robert Bartow. 

Natbaniel Valentine, Samuel T. Carey. 

St. Paul's Rectory, Eastchester. 




The pfarish of New Rochelle, which formerly ebnstituted a 
portion of the Manor of Pelh^m, was originally included in the 
two grants made by the Indians in the y6ars 1640 arid 1649, to 
the Dutch West India Company, but no settlement was actual- 
ly commenced npOn it until long after Thomas Pell's purchase 
from Warripage and other Indian sachems, which occurred in 
1654. ^ ' ' ^ 

Upon the 6th day of October, 1666, Richard Nicolls, Gov- 
ernor of the Province, did give, grant, ratify and confirm unto 
Thomas Pell, gentleman, all that tract of land lying to the 
eastward of Westchester bounds, (subsequently known as the 
Manor of P«lham,) (fee, " which said tract of tend had been 
purchased of the Indian proprietors, and ample^satisfaction giv» 
en for the same." ..--'■■ 

In 1669, the patentee devised the whole: Manor of Pelham to 
his nephew, John Pell, who obtained a further confirmation for 
the same from Thomas Dongari, Governor of this Province, on. 
the 29th of October, 1687, \ 

Upon the 20th of September, 1689, we find John Pell, Lordji 


of the Manor of Pelham, and Rachel his wife, conveying to 
Jacob Leisler, of the City of New- York, merchant,— " All that 
tract of land lying and being within the Manor of Pelhanl, 
containing 6000 acres of land, &<5.," (the present township of 
New Rochelle.) " The grantee, and his heirs and assigns yield- 
ing and paying urrto the said John Pell, his heirs and assigns, 
Lords of the Manor of Pelham, as an acknowledgment, one 
fat calf on every four and twentieth day of June, yearly, and 
every year forever, if demanded. "a 

Throughout the year, 1690, we find Jacob Leisler, the above 
grantee, releasing to the exiled Huguenots, the lands which he 
had purchased in their behalf. 

The Huguenots, or French Protestants of France, who gave 
the town the name it now bears, came directly from England, 
and were a part of the 50,000 persecuted, who fled into that 
country four years before the revocation of the Edict of Nances. 
This is confirmed by the charter of Trinity Church, in New 
Rochelle, wherein they specify that " they fled from France in 

The persecution which the Huguenots underwent has scarce 
its parallel in the History of religion ; though they obtained a 
peace from Henry IH, ia 1576,^it was only of short continu- 
ance, and their suflferings, mitigated by the famous Edict of 
Nantes, granted to them in 1598 by Henry IV., were again re- 
newed after the revocation of this Edict, by Louis XIV., in 


The retrospect of Saurin, a son of one of the ProtestaUt 
refugees, and a celebrated preacher at the Hague, is at once elo- 
quent and historical. ''A thousand dreadfiil blows," said the 
preacher, " were struck at our afliicted churches, before that 
which destroyed them ; for our enemies, if I may use such an 
expression, not content with Seeing our ruin, endeavoured to 

• " Wheiiever the fat calf was deniauded by the Lords of the Manor (on the Festi- 
val of St, John the Baptist^} each Huguenot paid his prpjiorticAi towards its pur- 
chase." — See Hist, of Westchester, vol. i. p. 376. 

^ See Chapter of Trinity Church. 


taste it. -Ooe wliile, edicts, were published against those, who 
foreseeing the calamities that threatened our; churches, and not 
having power to prevent them, desired only the sad consola- 
tion, of not being spectators of thfei^ ruin. Another while, Au- 
gust, 1669, against those, who, throughtheir weakness, had de- 
nied theii; religion, and who, not being able to bear the remorse 
of their consciences, desired to return to their .first profession. 
One while, May, 1679, our pastors were forbidden to exercise 
their discipline on those of their flocks, who had abjured the 
truth. Another while, June,. 1680, chiidreii of seven years of 
age, were allowed to embrace doctrines, which the Church of 
RomB allows, are nO't level to the . capacities of adults. June, 
1681, a college was suppressed, and then a church shut up, 
January, 1683. .Sometimes we were forbidden to convert infi.- 
dels-; and sometimes to confirta those in the truth whom we 
had instmcted frpm their infancy ; and our pastors were forbid- 
den to exercise their pastoral office; any longer in one place than 
three years. Sometimes the printing, of our books was prohibi- 
ted, July, 1685, and sometimes those which we had printed, 
were taken away. One while, we were not suffered to preach 
in a church, September, 1685/ and, aijother whilcy we were pun- 
ished for preaching on its ruins ; and at fength, we were forbid- 
den to worship God in public at all. Now, October, 1685, we 
were banished ; then 1689, we were forbidden to quit the king- 
dom on pain of death. Here, we saw the glorious rewards of 
some who betrayed their religion; and there, we beheld othersj 
who had-the courage to confess it, a haling to a dungeon, a scaf- 
fold, or a galley. Here, we saw our persecutors drawing oil a 
sledge the dead bodies of those who had expired on the rack. 
There we beheld a false friar tormenting a dying niari, who 
was terrified on the one hand, with the fear of hell, if he should 
apostatize, aad on the other,, with the fear of leaving his child- 
ren, without bread, if he should eontijiue in the faith; yonder, 
they were tearing children from. their parents, while the tender 
parents were shedding more tears for the' loss of their souls 
than for that of their bodies' or lives." '-., _\ - 


The exclamatioa of the satife preacher, in another sermon on 
some public occasion, bewailing the miseries of his exiled coun- 
trymenj reminds us of the "Lamentations," of the prophet'over 
Jerusalem and his captive brethren at Babylon. The apostro- 
phe to Louis XIV. is admirable, "Are our benedictions ex- 
hausted? Alas ! on this joyful day can we forget our griefe? 
Ye happy inhabitants of these provinces, so often troubled with 
a recital of our afflictions, we rejoice in your prosperity ; will 
you refuse to compassionate our misfortunes ? And you fire- 
hrawds plucked out of the fuming, sad and venerable ruins of 
our unhappy church,es': my dear brethren, whom the misfor- 
tunes of the times have cast on this shore, can we forget the 
miserable remnants of ourselves? O, ye groaning captives, ye 
weeping priests, ye sighing virgins, ye festivals profaned, ye 
ways of Zion mourning, ye untrddden paths, ye sad complaints, 
move, O ! move all this assembly. Of Jerusalem, if I forget 
thee, let my right hand forget her cunning. Not remember 
thee ! Let ifiy tongue cleaDe to the roof of my mouth, if I prefer 
not Jerusalem above m,y chief joy ! O, Jerusalem^ peace be with- 
in thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces. For m/y breth- 
ren and cempanion.s' sake I will now say, peace be within thee ! 
May God be moved, if not with the ardor of our prayers, yet 
with the excess of our afflictions; if not with our misfortunes, 
yet with the desolation of his sanctuaries ; if not with the bo- 
dies we carry all about the world, yet with the souls that are 
torn from us !" 

" And thou, dreadful prince, whom I once honoured as my 
king, and whom I yet respect as a scourge in the hand of Al- 
mighty God, thou also shalt have a part in my good wishes. 
These provinces, which thou threatenest, but which the arm of 
the Lord protects ; this country, which thou fiUest with refu- 
gees, but fugitives animated with love ; these walls, which con- 
tain a thousand martyrs of thy making, but whom religion ren- 
ders victorious, all these yet resound benedictions in thy favour. 
God grant, the fatal bandage that hides the truth from thine 
eyes may fall off ! May God forget the rivers of blood, with 


which thou hast deluged the earth, and which thy reign hath 
caused to be shed ! May God blot out pf his book the injuries 
which thou hast done us, and, while he rewards the sufferers, 
may he pardon those who exposed us to suffer ! O, may God 
who hath made thee to us, and to the whole Church, a minister 
of his judgments, make thee a dispenser of his favours, and ad- 
ministrator of his meroy."* 

M. Claude, a distinguished defender of the Reformed Church, 
referring to the " dragoons," who were sent to the Protestants to 
extort from, them an abjuration, says : — " They cast some into 
large fires, and took them out when they were half roasted. 
They hanged others with large ropes under the arm-pits, and 
plunged them several times into wells^ till they promised to re- 
nounce. their religion. They tied them like criminals on the 
rack, and poured wine wijth a funnel into their mouths, until 
being intoxicated, they declared that they consented to be 
Catholics. Some they slashed and cut with penknives ; o'thers 
they toQk by the nose with red hot tongs, and led them up and 
down the rooms till they promised to turn catholics." ^ 

" Wearied with incessant persecution, arid despairing of re- 
pose arounfl their native hearths, the Huguenots, began to leave 
France for more secure regions. The Protestants of other states 
and kmgdoms opened their arms to receive them ; no less than five 
hundred thousancl thus escaped, and found homes in Gerrnany, 
Holland, and England."' " King Charles H. granted letters of 
denization in council, under the great seal, and assured the ex- 
iles, that, at the next meeting of Jhe Parliament, he would in- 
troduce a bill, by which they should be naturalized, relieved 
them at the- inomeht from importation duties and passport fees, 
and encouraged voluntary contributions for their support*" 
This order was issued on the 28th of July, 1681, the same year 

• "Memoir of the Fre^jch Protestants, who settled at Oxford, Mass., A. D., 1686, 
&c., by A. Holmes, D. D., Corresponding Secretary of Mass. Hist. See., in 1830."' 
— See Collection of Mass., Hist. Soc, vol. ii. 3d series. 

^ Mr. Di^osvvay's Skptclt of the Huguenots. 

• Smedley's History of the Reformed Religion, vol. iii. p. 217. 


in which the Huguenots of Ne\y Rochelle, fled from France ; 
conclusive evidence that they constituted a portion of those ex- 
iles who accepted the royal offers and afterward, under, the pat- 
ronage, of the government, purchased and settled here in 1689. 
The state of the Huguenots at the time of the revocation was 
evidently insupportable, as they drew nigh that crisis there 
were harbingers of "the windy storm and tempest." A decla- 
ration against them in 1681, was the forerunner of the revoca- 
tion of the Edict of Nantes.^ The Huguenots were aided in 
their escape from France, by the English vessels that lay for 
some time off the Island of Rh6, opposite La Rpchelle, in which 
they were conveyed to England. ^ Tradition says, that they 
were subsequently transported to this place in one of the King's 
ships, and landed 6n Davenport's neck, at a place afterwards 
called Bauffet's, or Bonnefoy's Point. Soon after their ajrival, 
we find them thus addressing Governor Fletcher : — 


"To His Excellency OoU. Benjamin Fletcher, Gover- 
nor in Ohief, and Captain General of ye Province 
of New-York, and.dependeiicies, (fee. 
The humble petition of ye inhabitants of New Rochelle, 
Humbly Sheweth, 
That your petitioners having been forced by the late perse- 
cutions in France to forsake their couritry and estates, and flye 
to ye protestant Princes. Their Majestyes by their proclama- 
tion of ye 25th of Aprill, 1689, did grant them an azile in all 
their dominions, with their Royall protection ; wherefore they 
were invited to come and buy lands in this province, to the end 
that they might hy their labour help the necessityes of theit 
familyes, and did spend therein all their smale store, with the 
help of jtheir friends, whereof they did borrow great sums pf 
money. They are above twenty 

Hist, of Louis XIV. 6, 13. 

Smedley's Hist, of the Reformed Religion, vol. iii. p. 217. 



{M^. torn)^ poor and needy, not able 
ties and clothingj much- 
they did hitherto beare above their 

thereby redyced to a lamentable condition^ 
as having been compelled to sell for that purposs the things 
which were most necessary for their use. Wherefore your pe- 
titioners humbly pray- 
That your Excellency may be pleased, to take their case in 
serious consideration, and out of Charity and pity, to grant 
them for some years what help and priviledges your Excel- 
lency shall think convenient. 
And your petitioners in duty bound shall ever pray, &c. 

Thauuet, '■ 
Elei Cothouneau."* 
The settlement of the present, village was commenced by 
these -sufferers, for conscience' sake, soon after the purchase of 
the town in 1689, who gave it the name it now bears, in re- 
membrance of their 

" OvriRoG^elle, the fair Rochelle, 
Proud city of the waters."' 

Coeval with the foundation of the village was the organization 
of a church, in forming which, the Huguenots appear to have 
adheied to the principles, arid as far as they were 'able at that 

• Doc. Hiist. of New-York, vol. iii. p. 926. 


time, to have maintained the Articles, Liturgy, Discipline and 
Canons, according to the usage of the Reformed Church in 
France. " It was for their religion that they suffered in their 
native country ; and to enjoy its privileges, unmolested, they 
fled into the wilderness." 

As soon as the Church was organized, the most active meas- 
ures were taken for the erection of an edifice. Provision 
had been partly made for this purpose, in the grant to Jacob 
Leisler on the 20th of September, 1689. It was there declared 
thaX John Pell, Lord of the Manor, with ^he consent of Rachel, 
his wife, did (besides; the six thousand acres) give and grant 
'' To the said Jacob, Leisler, the further qiaaatity of one hundred 
acres of land for the use of the French Church, erected or to be 
erected hy the inhabitants of the said tract of land." 

The fii;st church edifice: of which -anything is known, was 
built by the Huguenots, about 1692-3. It was constructed of 
wood and stood on the property of Williarp Wood, in the rear 
of the Mansion House; and close to the old Boston post road, f 
Near the same time, Louis Bongrand " Did give unto theinhab- 
taints of New Rochelle a.pieceof land forty paces square, for a 
churchyard to bury their dead."!* A house and about three acres 
of land were subsequently given by the town to the church 

At this early period the inhabitants appear to have enjoyed 
the ministrations of the 

* Several aged' inhabitants of this town, still living, remember the old church 
v^hich was destroyed soon after the Revolutionary War. 

'"Louis Bongrand purchased of Jacob Leisler and Elsie his wife, 31 May, 
1690, and sold to Francis Tiereus and Valeutiiie Cruger, on the 23d June, 1693, 
In the conveyance of the latter to Joost Bane, 9th May, 1698, the above gift is 
specified." — New Rochelle Town Rec. p. 70. " In a deed from Lewis Guion to Zaca- 
rie Engevin, &c.( on the 26th Dec, 1701, the former was to • have a particular 
lane or road' to serve the latter • from Boston road going to the church yard, «U 
along the swamp, &c., making a door (gate) which shall be shut by those, who 
will make use of it, &c.' "—New Rochelle "fown Reo. page 20. 

• See Mr. Bartows letter to Sec, Nov. 15, 1722. See also Mr. gtouiJpe's letter to 
the same, Dec. 11, 1727. 



a Fretich Protestant minister, who accompanied the first 
settlers in their' flight from France. His name, as pastor 
of the French Colony at New RocheUe, appears in the follow- 
ing letter to Governor Leisler :— 

Sir, , ■" ; 

" I have too much respect for your orders, not to execute them 
punctually; so, that pursuant to what you did nie the honour 
lately to give me ; I spoke to the principals of this new Colony 
abput the nomination of some persons for the vacant offices of 
Justice of the Peace, but as the condition you require — that is 
a knowledge of the English tongue — has precluded them from 
making the election of two or three, according to your otder, 
they cannot pitph upon any except Mr. Strang, saving your ap- 
probation, which if you will have the goodness to accord them, 
you will oblige them infinitely. 

Mr. Pinton has also delivered me this day, an order to be 
commTinicated to the sd inhabitants relative to the election and 
nomination of assessors, collectors and commissaries, for levy- 
ing, imposing iand receiving taxes for his Mujesty's service. 
The time is very short, since it is the twenty-seventh i instant 
they niust be at Westchester, but they look for some forbear- 
ance and delay from your goodness, in case, notwithstanding 
their diligence, they may not be able' punctually to answer. -It 
is not through any unwillingness to exert themselves to meet it, 
but you know their strength as well as I. Notwithstanding, 
despite their poverty and misery, they will never lack in sub- 
mission to the orders on behalf of 'his Majesty, both for the .pub- 
lic good and interest. This they protested to me, and I pray 
you to be persuaded thereof. I am ^ith riespect, and I pray 
God for your prosperity. Sir, 

Your very humble 

and very obedient servant. 


Pccstor of this French Colony. 



a Monsieur, 
de Leislar, 
Lieut. QoiLverneuv pour le . 
Roy d'Angleterre, du fori 
William a la Note York."^ 
Nothing is known with regard'to the Rev. David 4e Bonrp- 
pos' ministry or character. He must have resigned his charge 
here in 1694, for the Rev. John Miller, describmg Jhe iProvince 
of New- York in 1695, says: — "There is a meeting house at 
Richmotid, (Staten Island), of which Dr. Bonrepos is the minis- 
ter. There are foi:ty English, forty-four Dutch and thirty-six 
French families." Upon the 9lh day of March, 1696, " David de 
Bonrepos, of New York city. Doctor of Divinity, and Blanche l)is 
wife, did grant to Elias de Bonrepos, of New Roch«,lle, hus' 
bahdman, all that certain parcel of land situate and lying at 
New Rochelle in the Manor of Pelham, &c., containing fifty 
acres of ground. <fec."b 

The following entry occurs in the Town Records : — " The 
year of grace, 1693, we, the elders of the Church of New Ro- 
chelle, in the Province of New- York, according to the inten- 
tion and will and desire of the/inhahitants of this said Church, 
have accorde,d to Ambroise Sicard, Jun. and Danijel Sicard, to 
convert into a rent at six per cent., the forty shillings which 
they owe for ten acres of land sold theiri- by the said inhabi- 
tants, (fcc, and begin to pay the rent from the first to the last of 
May of the year 1694. Signed, Thauvet Ecotonneau, Tmaoher 
Theroude, Guillaume le Conte, Daniel Strang."* 

By an Act of General Assembly passed on the 24th of March, 

• Doc. Hist, of N. Y. vol. ii. 304, 5. 

b Town Reo. Lib. A. 112. " Upon the 6th of Feb., 1695-6, letters of denization 
were granted to DaVW Bonrepos and others. Elias Bonrepos was licensed to keep 
school within ye Town of Rochelle upon the 23d of June, 1705."— 'Albany Deed 
Book, vol. X. 65. "/Letters of administration were granted to Martha Bonrepos, wife 
of David Bonrepos, 25th of Oct., 1711."— Surrogate's office, N. Y., Lib. viii. 61. 

Town R^c, Lib. A. 33. 


1693, (which was subsequently confirmed) the Manor of Pel- 
ham became one of the four districts or pj-ecincts of Westches- 
ter, Parish. In 1702, New Rochelle contributed towards the 
rector's maintenance and poor of the parish, £7 3s. In 1720 
her quota had increased to £12, 14, l^. 

The next minister of the French Reformed Church at New 
Rochelle was the 


a native of France. He was born in the year 1652, studied the- 
ology at Geneva and afterwards entered the ministry. On the 
revocation of the Edict of Nantes^ he fled from France to Bng- 
larid,a here he received Holy'OrderS from the Right Rev. Henry 
Compton, Lord' Bishop of London, and soon after accompanied 
th&,French emigrants Who arrived at Boston, Mass, in the sum- 
mer of ISSe.b For eight years he was employed by the Cor- 
poration for Propagating the ^^hristian Faith aniong the In- 
dians« at a place called New Oxford, near Boston, and was 
also a minister 9f the French congregation there, as appears 
from a letter written by him to some person in authority (prob- 
ably Governor Dudley) complaining of the sale of runj to the 

' " Upon the revocation, the rest of the ministers were allgwedflfteeii days for their 
departure : but it can hardly be believed to what cruelties and vexations they were 
exposed." . . . . " And yet, (adds the English historian) through rich mercy, very 
few revolted ; the tar gteatest part of them escaped, either into England, .Holland, 
Germany or Switzerlalnd ; yea, and some are now iu New England." — Synodi- 
con Intrbd. , 

i- " In Sept., 1686, ^626 were contributed for the relief of the French Protestants 
who came to New England." — See Mass Hist. Coll. 3d series, vol. IV. 62, "In 
1693, Cotton Mather spesiks of Mr. 3ondet, as a. faithful minister ' to the French 
congregation at New Oxford, iu the Nipmug country.' " — Magnalia. B. yi. c. vi. § 2. 
vol. ii. p. 382. 8vo. ed. Hart. 2 vols. 1820. 

" On the restoration of Charles II., the charter for the Prornoting and Propaga 
lion of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in.N. E. (founded in 1649) was renewed through 
the influence of, Mr. Ashurst and Richard Baiter, with the Lord Chancellor Hyde, 
and- the powers under it ivere enlarged : for now the corporation was styled " The 
Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in New Englarid-and the parts adja- 
cent in America." 


Indians, " without order and measure," and of its baneful ef- 
fects— the date, is lost, with a line or two at the beginning, but 
is endorsed Mr. Daniel Bondet's representation referring to 
New Oxford, July &th, 1691.^ 

Mr. Bondet must have continued his labors at New Oxford 
and its vicinity until near 1695, for in another communication, 
we find that "In 1695 Mr. Bondet, a French Protestant minis- 
ter, preached to the Nipraug Indians." After this, we hear no 
more of him at New Oxford. ^ He probably removed, to this 
place sometime during the Summer pj Fall of 1695, for the inhabi- 
tants of New Rochelle addressing the Propagation Society in 
1709, declare , that " By the assistance of Goloijel Heathcote 
they had been provided fourteen years ago with a worthy min. 
isfer, Mr. DaTiiet Bondet, ordained by the Bishop of London."* 
To this event, Col. Hea,thcote, himself alludes in a letter to the 
Society daled 10th of April, 1704 :— " I did propose, to the Ves- 
try, of Westchester a medium ii* that matter, which was, that 
there being at Boston a . French Protestant minister, one Mr. 
, Bondet, a very good man, \vh6 was in orders by my Lord of 
London, and could preach both in English and French, and 
the people bf New Rochelle being destitute of a minister, we 
would call Mr. Bondet to- the living, (pf Westchester) and the 
parish being large etiough to maintain two, we would likewise 
continue Mr. Mather and. support him by, subscriptions. The. 
Vestry seemed to be extremely well pleased with this proposal 
aixd desired me to send for Mr. Bondet, which. I immediately 
did, hoping by that means to bring them over to the Church, 
but Mather apprehending what I aimed at, persuaded the Ves- 

* " Soon after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, Jos. Dudley and other propri- 
etore, brought over thirty French Protestant families into this country and settled 
tljem upon the eastermoat part or end of the said tract of land, now knovpn by the 
name of .Oxford." — Oxfotd Town Records. ' i 

>> His name does not occur in a list of the principal inhabltauts in 1696, the yea^ 
the settlement was broken up by an incursion of the, Indians. 

« See Charter o*" Trinity Church. 


try to alter thek re^olutioas and when he came they refused to 
call.him."a, , , 

So that projection, failing, (of inducting Mr, Bondet to the 
Parish of Westchesfer),Colonel,Heathcote obtained his services 
foj- the French Church at New Rochelle. ' At this early period 
both Mr. Veseyof New- York and Mr. Bondet, preached in 
several parts of the Country and administered the rite, of Holy 
Baptism. Mr. Bondet's- destitute condition soon after his settle- 
ment, is proved by the following document :— »- 



[translated FROM THE FRENCH.] ; 

"To His Excellency Milord Cornbury, Governor and 
Commander in Chief. 
My Lord, 

I most humbly pray your Excellency to be pleased to take 
cognizance of the petitioners condition. 

I am a French refugee minister, incorporated into the body of 
the ministry of the Anglican Church ; I removed about fifteen 
years ago into New England with a company of poof refugees 
to whom lands/were granted for their settlement, and topirovide 
for my subsistence, I was allowed one hundred and five pieces 
per annum, from the funds of the corporatiorj for the pro- 
pagation of the Gospel among the savages^ I performed that 
duty during nine years with a success approved and attested, 
by those who presided. over the affairs of that Province, 

The murders which the Indians committed in those countries 
caused the dispersion of our company, some of whom fell by the 
hands of the barbarians. 1 remaitied after that, two years in 
that province expecting a favorable season for the reestablish- , 
meht of affairs,, but , after waiting two years, seeing no 'appearr 
anccj and being invited to remove to this P rovince of .New- 

See Westchester Parish, p. 25. 


York, by Colonel Heathcote, wlio always evinces ati affection 
for the public good, and distinguishes himself by a special appli- 
catioil for the advancement of religion and good order, bythe 
establishment of churches and schools, the fittest means to 
strengthen and encourage' the people, I complied with his re- 
quest and that of the Company of New Rpchelle, in this Pro- 
vince, where I passed five years on a small allowance promised 
me by New Rochelle, of one hundred pieces and bdging, with 
that of one hundred and five pieces which the corporation con- 
tinued to me until the arrival of milord Belaraont who,, after 
indicating his willingness to taife charge of me and oi}r Canton, 
ordered me thirty pieces in the Council of York, and did 
me the favor to promise me 4hat at his journej' to Boston he 
would procure me the continuation of that stipend that I had in 
times past. But having learried at Boston, through Mr. Nanfan, 
his lieutenant, that I annexed my signature to an ecclesiastical 
certificate which the churches and pastors of this. Provincp had 
given to Sieur Delius, Minister of Albany, who had not the 
good' fortune to please his late LOrdshlp,hig defunct Excellency 
cut off his thirty pieces which he had ordered me in his Council 
at York, deprived me of the Boston pension of twenty-five pieces, 
writing to London to have that deduction approved, and left 
me, during three -years last past in an.extreme destitution of the 
means of subsistence, 

I believed, my Lord, that in so important a service as that in 
which I am employed, I ought not to discourage , myself, and 
that the Providence of God which does not abandon those who 
have recourse to his aid by well> doing, would provide in its 
time fpr my relief. 

Your Excellency's equity ; the affection you have evinced to 
us for the encouragement of those who employ themselves con- 
stantly and faithfully in God's service induce me to hope that, I 
shall have a share in the dispensation of your justice to relieve 
me from my suffering, so that I may be aided and encouraged 
to continue my service, in which, by duty and gratitude, I shall 
continue with my flock to pray God for the preservation of your 


person, of your illustrious family and the prosperity of your 
government. Remiaining your Excellency's most humble and 
most respectful servant." 

" Order and Report on the above. 

At a Council held at ffort Wm. Henry, this 29th day of Jurie, 


Sa: Sli : Brouffhton, 1 ^ , , ^^ , t^ t'i ' 

^ J r. 1 Caleb Heathcote, Esq., John 

Garrard Beekman, > Esars t^ ■ V ^ . \^ 

6- ^r T^ f iihiirs.. Bridges, Doctor of Laws. 

Rip Yan Dam, J si 

Upon the motion of Coll : Heathcote that the Minister of New 
Rochelle had formerly a salary allowed him out of the Revenue 
which the late Earl of Bellamont deprived him of, it is hereby 
ordered that the petition of- the said Minister formerly D<1 to 
his Excellency, be referred to the s* CoU : Heathcote, who is to 
"examine into the allegations and report the same. 

By^order of His Excellency and Council, 

B. CosENS, Cl'k CouricilP 

" May it please yr Bxcell : 

In obedience to yr Excell commands : I have examined into 
thte allegations of the within Petition and do find that the- 
Petitioner was employed about fifteen years ago by the corpora- 
tion for propagating the Xtjan ffaith amongst the Indians at a_ 
place called New Oxford, aear Boston, with the allowance of a 
salary of £25 a year, where he consumed the little he-brought with 
him from ffrance in settling himself for that service, a,nd being 
afterwards by reason of the War compelled to fly from thencej. 
his improvemefits where wholly lost. During the time of his 
stay there, which was about eight years, it appears by a certifi- 
cate under the hands of the late Lieut. Governour Stoughtoti, of' 
Bostoil, Wait Wintrope, Increase Mather and Charles Morton, 
that he with great faithfullnesse, care and industry, discharged 

• Doe. Hist, of N. Y., vol. iii. 989. 



his duty, both in reference to Xtians and Indians, and was of 
an unblemished life and conversation. After his being called 
to New RocheUe the Corporation afore-mentioned, in considera- 
tion of his past services and sufferings, were pleasedstill to con- 
tinue him his salary, which he enjoyed until the arrival of the 
late Earl of Bellamont, who having settled £30 a year upon 
him out of the Revenue, used afterwards his interest with the 
said Corporation to take off the salary, they had all along' 
allowed him, which no sooner was effected but he immediately 
suspended him also from the £30 a year he had settled upon 
him, by which means the Peti);ioner is l^ft with a very deplora- 
ble condition, not being able with the salary that is allowed 
him at New Rochelie,. which is only £20 a year to support him- 
self and family. All which is humbly .subnaittedby 
Yr E^celi's obedient humble servknt, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

It is a singular fact that the first settled Episcopal minister ' 
in this country should have been a French Protestant refugee, 
and that New Hochelle, the favorite asylum of 'the Huguenotis, 
should claim theihonor of having called him. 

Upon the 20th of November, A. D. 1700, "Sir John Pell b.and 
Rachel his wife, granted to Daniel Sampson and Isaac Cantin, 
one jiundred acres, provided that the purchasers and their as- 
signeees, shall do suit and service, now or at any time hereafter, 
from time to time in the M?inor Court, and pay their proportion 
to the minister. of the place." '^ 

" In consideration of £100 — 150 acres, beginning at-the end of 
25rods westward from the marked tree, said to be marked for the 
division lines of the French, in New Rochelie purchase, being 
' between the land of the said Pell and the foresaid purchase." 

"July the 22nd, 1700, j In a General Assembly of the inhab- 
ita,nts of this pjaoe, according to, Justice Mott's warrant, it has 

• Doc. Hist, of New- York, vol. iii. pp. 929, 930, 931, 933. 
■> So styled iu the Towii Records. 

• Town Records, p. 10. 


been agreed by the plurality of votes, that above the hundred 
acres of land given by Sir John Veil for the church of this place, 
the said one hundred acres shall be taten on the undivided 
land, according to the choice of the elders of the church, as 
they will find the more- profitable for the church and people."* 

At a meeting of the Justices and Vestry, held in the town of 
Westchester, on the 5th day of May, 1704, appeared Mr. Peter 
Hulse, (constable for the town of Wew Rochelle in 1702,) who 
produced two receipts for £5, the minister's rate for that year."'' 

The clergy of New- York, addressing^the Society on the 17th 
of October, 1704, say : — " Mr. Daniel Bondet has gone further 
and done more in that good work (convertingthe heathen,) than 
any Protestant' ministet that we know, we copiriend him to 
your pious consideration as a person industrious in ye service of 
the Church and his own nation, ye French, at New Rochelle." 
' The following is Dr. Bondet's first letter to the Secretary of 
the Venerable Society. 


• "New Rochelle. Juli/24ih, 1707. 

Sir, - ' ' 

Col. Heatbcote has done me the favor to communicate to me 
the extract of a letter, where you make njention to him of me, 
and thte part the Honorable Society is pleased to take in what 
concerns my life and service. If it had pleased God that the 
ships had come hither, which he expected, I doubt not but ac- 
col'diHg to your opiuion, I had had proofs of their good wiU and- 
approbation, as also directions from my Lord Bishop of London j 
concerriing those things- whereof I did myself the honour to* in- 
form his Lordship, with the testimony of several eminent and 
creditable persons. T'would be needless. Sir, to repeat things 
whereof my Lord of London and the Honorable Society are ful- 
ly informed. I'll only ssty for my- comfort and the honour of 
my service, that amongst the many niisfortunes that, have hap- 

• Town ReftorSs, Lib.' A, p.'5. 
•• Westchester Vestry Book. 


pened to me, never any one opened his lips to reproach me of 
my life and doctrine, and Gpd has -si^pported me in all those ca- 
se^ in which men have*abandoned me. 1 initnediately looked 
upon that, which his Excellency, my Lord Oornbury, ordered 
me out of Her Majesty's revenue- as a sure fund, but the 
payment thereof is so jemote from one another that I am ready 
to peiish in the mean time, insomuch, that 'tis very surprising 
to all them that hear it.: MyJLiord is so kind as to give me some 
warrants, but to this, hour I haTe soriie hy me of four years 
standing, whereof Mr. Neau is soliciting one with Mr. Bearsly, 
the Receiver, without being able to get anything. Thefavor I 
ask of you, Sir, apd the Honourable JSociety, is, that you would 
be so good as to get me such an order from the said Sqciety as 
you shall judge most proper for the payment of my arrears, and 
if it be Her Majesty's good pleasure to confirpa to me what two 
Governoms, by the advice of the .Cotineilhave ordered as a nec- 
essary provision for my subsistance, viz., £30 out of Her Majes- 
ty's revenue, and that pension be paid tome quarterly according 
to the time of its establishment. If I obtain tliis favour of the 
Honouiable Society,,! shall; be obHged to you for having con- 
tributed thereimto by your representation aceordingto your justice, 
and charity^ I pray God to give us the opportunity of giving 
satisfaction to that venerable body (whereof you are a member) 
by the joyfull tidings of the great progress which the Gospell 
makes in these parts, through their great care and piety. 1 hatfe 
seen with pleasure the beginning of Mr. Neau's exercises, as al- 
so, from, time to time, the progress and good order of his prose- 
lytes. It ^ere to be wished that the civil powers would take the . 
same care of the slaves in the country, I have often proposed 
this to our company, among whom there are several slaves ; the 
poor creatures might easily receive the same edification by the 
care of the minister in their several places ; if that was recom- 
mended in such a manner that the servants, the masters and 
pastors, might understand that this arder which our superiors 
require is both reasonable and just. I should be always ready, 
if it pleased the Lord with his help, to discharge my duty and 


follow the directions which shallbe given me by my superiors, for 
whom I will continue to pray heartily that God would direct 
them how to labpur successfully in all things for the advance- 
ment of his glory in the midst of his people, and that he would 
please to continue unto you life and grace to further hrs work 
in your generation, 

I am, Sir, (fee, &c., 

Daniel BondEt."* 

The following extract, from a letter of Col. Heathcote to the 
Secretary, shows that the Society must have imniediately 
granted the favour which Mr. Bondet so earnestly solicited. 
The writer also recommends the payment of an annual salary 
to Mr. Bbhdet, and that he be directed to use the English 
Liturgy at all times : — 


" Mannor of Scarsdale, Bee. I8th, 1707. 
Worthy Sir, 
I desire my hearty thanks may be given them for their 
favours in remembering Mr. Bondet, and it was. truly a seasona- 
ble relief to hini, he having for many years been only fed with 
fair proihises from the Government, being, I think, at this time 
about four year^ in arrear. As to what you mention of my Lord 
of London recommending hiin to our Governour, I can't tell what 
service it may do him to' his Lordship's successor ; but it will be 
of little u'se' or' service to him now. As fol his being able to 
preach in English, I do assure you he can and doth it every 
third Sunday, using the liturgy of our Church in the town 
where he lives, which is part of and belongs to Mr. Bartow's 
parish and where he hath to this day never preached one ser- 
mon, althonghlthey contribute one-fifth pdrt or thereabouts to- 
wards his maintenance. N6w, if the Society think fit to settle 
a constant allowance on Mr. Bondet, he must then be directed 

* New- York, MSS. from archives ait Fulham, vol. i. pp. l€3~4--5, (Hawks.) 


by my Lord of London, at all times, whether he preacheth in 
English or French, to use our liturgy, which he above all 
things desires, and it will then be advisable that common 
prayer books in French be sent over for his cpngiegation. Ajid as 
to the improvement ot his time,, that he piay not receive tfie 
Society's money without doing them service for it ; when notice 
is given that they have been pleased to establish him, Mr. Muir- 
soii, Bartow, Colonel Morris and myself, will have a meeting, 
and taking to our assistance the, soberest inhabitants of the 
country, we will consider of the properest ways not only for im- 
proving Mr. Bondet, but likewise at the same time think of the 
most effectual means for taking care, besides the two parishes, 
of such parts of the country as are included in neither ; and had 
I not formerly been opposed, this had not been to be done now ; 
and in case any of the missionaries shall refuse a reasonable 
coniplyance the Society shall most faithfully have an account 
thereof, that if by them they can't be persuaded to their duty, 
their allowances: may be withdrawn, for I can't tell what others 
may think of it, but, for my own part, to coiinive at the misap- 
plication of the money given to that pious Use, I think to be 
equal to one^s being concerned in plundering of churches."* ' 

At first, Mr. Bondet used the French Prayers, according to 
the Protestant churches of France ; and subsequently on every 
third Sunday, as appears by the above letter, the Liturgy of the 
Church of England ; but in 1709 his congregatien, with the 
exception of two individuals, followed the pxample of their 
Frencli, Reformed brethern in England, by, conforming to the 
English Church. This memorable event is thus recorded in 
the charter : " That on the 12th day of June, in the year of our 
Lord, one thousand, seven hundred and nine, all the inhabi- 
tants of the Township of New Rochelle, who were members of 
the said^ French Church, excepting two, unanimously agreed 
and consented to conform themselves, in the religious worship 
of their said Church, to the Liturgy and rites of theCJhurch of 

New- York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. pp. 167, 168, 169, (Ha,wks..) 


England as established by law, and by a solmn act oi- agree- 
ment did submit, to, a,nd put themselves under the protection of 
the same." ' . 

Six days prior to their conformity, the members of the church 
addressed the following letter to Colonel Heathcote. This was 
probably the document alluded to 'in his letter of the 12th, which 
Mr. Bondet read at the' meetiiig": — ; ' 

' ^ "New-York, June Qth, 1709. 

Honor'p Sir, 
Since it is by your charitable assistance and concurrence that 
the company of New Rochelle find themselves provided, with 
the ministry, that your prudence and wise management Jiath 
hitherto composed and aswaged our difficulties' about. these 
matters, of Church settlement; vfe have thought that it was 
our duty a,nd that it should be your pleasure of charity, to assist 
us with your presetice and directions, that we may come, to 
some terms of Resolution for to have our Church jn full confor- 
mity with the national Church of England, and for to have the 
protection aiid assistaiice of the rules and encouragers of the 
same, that the service of jGrod may,,be established' in our place 
according to that holy rule, and 1;he , weakness of Gt,ir place cbn- 
si(J^red, that she may be enabled to support the charges of the 
ministry, as your Honor knows ehpugh of Our circujnstances, be 
upon that trust, of your candour, sincerity and charity, for 
refuge Protestants, well me9,ning in the, duties of our holy re- 
ligion. Wfe remain, . • 

Hpuor'd Sir, 
Your riiost humble and dutiful servants, " 

. > Elias Badeau, 

Adhew Reneau, ' 
J. Levillaine. 
[Signed by twenty-six others. "a] 

The services. oil this occasion were hejd' in the old wooden 

»'New-Y6rk, MSS. from archives at-Falham, voL i. pp, 189-90-. (Hawk's.) 


church, erected in 1692-3, upon Monday, June the 13th, A. D. 
1709.» Mr. Bartow, the rector of the Parish, who was present 
and read prayers, gives the' following account to the Secretary 
of the Venerable Propagation Society : — - 

[extract.] . , 

" Front Westchester in New -York, in America, 

June -10th, 1709^. 
Sir, ; / 

This night being Friday, Mr. Sharp is come to my house" on 
his way to Rye where lie intends to preach next Sunday, and I 
have appointed to meet him at New Rochelle next Monday, to try 
if we can persuade Mr. Bdn^det's congregation to conform to the 
Church of England, which if they will do, Col. Nichorspa has 
engaged to procure their minister (Mr. Bondet) an allowance from 
the Society, whom" they are not able to maintain iinegard the 
£30 per annum, formerly paid out of the dUeen's revenue is 

discontinued. i 

" Thiesday, June lith. 

1 was at New Rochelle yesterday, where I read the service 
of bur Church and Mr. Sharps preached a sermon, and Colonel 
Heathcdte being there likewise, after sermon, we proposed their 
conformity to the Liturgy of the Church of England, to which 
they all who were there present (the chief and priiicipal inhabi- 
tants) assented, as you will see by their several natnes subscribed 
to 4he writing sent by Col. Heathcote, to which I refer you. 

John Bartow."'' 

Colonel Heathcote, who was also present on the occasion, 
thus writes: — 


''l Manor of Soarsdale, June XZth, 1709. 
Worthy Sir, 
After I had finished my other letters, Mr. Bondet gave me an 

* And not on Sunday the 12th, as the (jfaarter declares. The lessons for the 
day were tke 19th Chap, of Job and 13th of St. Mark.- 
i" New- York, MSSv from archives at Fulham, vol, i. pp. 194-5, (Hawks.) 


accouiit by: letter, that his people were in a very good temper to 
receive and conform to the Liturgy of our Church, in their con- 
gregation, whereupon I went to New Rochelle, being accom- 
panied by Mr. Sharp, Chaplain to the ffdrces, he being at my 
housej having yesterday preached and administered the sacra- 
ment at Rye. Mr. Bartow did us also the favour to meet us at 
Mr. Bondet's, an dhis congregation teing desired to be at 
church, after the service hatd been performed by Mr. Bartow, 
and a very good sermon preached to them by Mr. Sharp, the 
heads of their congregation desired Mr. Bbndfet to read and pre- 
sent me with apa^r, re^turnihg me thanks for my endeavours 
in. settling them in their religious affairs, which I send you here- 
with. Whereiipon, those gentlemen of the clergy and I did 
"advise them to address the Society, acquainting them with their 
resoTutipn of conforming to the rules and discipline of the 
Ch'urch, to pray'their assistance; in su|)J)orting their minister 
and to send them a- number df common prayer books in the 
fiiench language, which, is here enclosed, and also an instru- 
ment in ffrench, being a declaration of their inclinations to con- 
form to the rules of th? Church. We all of us prondised them not 
, to reconamend them in the best manner we coul^, but also 
to prevail with Col. Nichohon and Col. Morris to do' the like. I 
believe I need not use many arguments to persuade the Society 
to do- what they ban cojavehiently for them; for Mr. Bondet, 
besides his serving the rpeople of New Rochelle, will be of grfeat 
use in assisting the ministers of the other , Parishes, and not 
■only that, but if these' people are favaurably received and en- 
couraged,- it will be a great means to influence the ffrench con- 
gregation in New-York likewise to conform arid I ana not with- 
out hopes of .effecting my desired end of having this country divi- 
ded into three Parishes, by which means we should effectually shut 
out all isectaries from ever crowding in upon us. . I can hardly 
express how great conifort and satisfaction it is to me to see this 
\Vork brought near so happy an isstte and for which I have been 
laboring in vain many years, and the only thing that obstructed 
it was, that the Government would not give us leave, and which 


was almost the only cause that noue qf your churches have 
throve better in this Province. Tiie ffleet are just upon sailing 
and I am in a very great hurry in concTuding my letters, biit I 
must beg leave to refer you to my next andremafoi, worthy sir, 
Your aflectionate humble servant, 

Caleb Heathcote."* 

The subjoined add-fess is from the Inhabitants of New Ro- 
cbelle to the Society. It must have beeti written in 1709 and 
not the previous year as the MS. has it : — 

" The humble petition of several inhalDitants of the 
towii of New Rochelle; in thei Prtfvines of New- 

• , ' - - . » ■ 

York, in. behalf of themselves and other inhabi- 
tants of the said Place. ' 
The extraordinary Care that your Honorable Society hath 
shewn in these parts of America, for the settlement of the Church , 
in places which want directions and encouTagemeht, to come to 
the happy ternis of union and conformity to the national Church 
of England, makes us confidently fo 'hope that your charity will 
be' pleased to take into your pious consideration the condition of 
a poor coifipany of refugees, inhabitants of the town of New- 
Rochelle, whose case hath been- represented already several , 
times by the Hon. Col. Heathcote, by whos^ assistance and con- 
currence we were provided fourteen years ago with a worthy 
minister, Mr. Daniel Bondet; ordained by the Lord Bishop of 
London ; who, by bis constancy and tender condescension hath 
shewed us how confidently and with good conscience we may 
con;ply with the Church of England and further our edification 
in the knowledge and grace of our Lord Jesus Chtist, for whose 
sake we have left our native country and have been with great 
pity and charity relieved in Engjapd. 
- We have now happily brought that work to a fair and re- 

• New- York, MSS. from archives at Pulham, vol. i. pp. 187-8-9. (Hawks.) 


solved conclusion. The Hon., Col. Francis Nicholson, Colonel 
Heathcote and Colonel Morris, have promised to use their inter- 
est with the Venerable Society to have some reg^ird to the just 
represeritation of our circumstances which are unable to sup- 
port the charges of a ministry, having been able to pay to Mr. 
Daniel Bondet but , £20, this country money, per annum^ 
sometiines more, often lesg. i>fot\yithstanding which,^ he hath 
courageously continued to edify us by his doctrine and irre- 
prOveable .conversation. 

The £30 per annum proposed, tg be paid hiin out of the 
rpvenUe. of this f rpvince, hath for se'ver^.r years been unpaid, as 
will appear by the jpyrit representation of thesaid Col. Heath- 
cote and the Reverend Clergy, with an account of the unpaid 
warrants. The revenue is now expired by its own limitation, 
and we have no other hope of support for the maintenance of our 
minister than in your piety and charity, which We, beg leave to 
implore in these our indigent circumstances, and that you will 
be pleased to send over , a considerable number of common 
prayer books, in the French language. We are already above 
one hundred comrriuiiicants,and if we can enjoy the benefits of 
an English schoolmaster sent amongst us, we hope we and our 
posterity daily to improve, under the happy constitution of the 
English ChLUrch and Government. 

We conclude with our hearty prayers to God for the peace of , 
the nation, the enlargemerit and prosperity of the Church, 
and a blessing on ypiir pious endeavours for promoting the Gos- 
pel of Jesus Christ, and are with profound respect, 

Rt. Reverend Rt. Honoiirable and' Venerable, . ' 
Your most obedient humble servants, 


Louis Guions^Jejeune, 
Anthony LfsPENA-ii, 


[With twenty-tVo others."*] 
" New- York,, MSS. from archive^ at Fulham, vol, i. pp. 107-8. (Hawk's.) 


In this act of conformity, to the Church of England, the 
Huguenots followed the sentiments of their own Church, which 
from the beginning of the Reformation to this time, had allowed 
it to be lawful to do so, and cofldemfted those who made any 
separation, but from the Church of Rome. 

Beza, one of the most powerful advocates, for the Huguenots, 
wrote to some of them who were discontented in England, con- 
juring them by all that was good and sacred^ not to forsa,ke the 
communion of the Chureh of England, for such indifferent jites 
and ceremonies as wer^ there imposed upon them.* Whilst 
Calvin, the founder of the French Churches, passed an ane- 
themfi , upon those who forsake the comniuhion of orthodox 
bishops virhefe thjey are to be had. Witness that solemn declara- 
tion of his, in his Book, De ^Necessitate Reforinand«e Eccleisioe. 
"Talem si ij obis exhibeant hierarchiahi; in qua sic emineant 
episcopi, ut Christo: subeSse non recusent-^ut ab illo tanquain 
unioo Capite pendeantj et, ad ipsiim rSferfentur — turn nulla nob 
anathemate dignos fateor, si qui erunt qui non eam reverentdr, 
summdque obedientia observent." "Give us such' an hierarchy," 
says he, " in which bishops preside, who are subject to Christ, 
and Him alone as their Head ; and th^n, I will own no curse 
tod bad for him that shall not. pay the utmost,respect andobedi- 
ence to such ah hier^ychy as that." 

^'The truth is, Calvin and Beza, and thePrench Churdh set 
up such a. government and discipline at ,the Rieformatiori, a!s the 
state of theii' affairs would bear ; but they never absolutely 
condemned Episcopacy, o> thought their own model ought tol)e 
the rule tp other Churches. , Beza expressly disclaims that as a 
false and slanderous imputation in any that should say, "They 
prescribed their own example folWwed by any other 
Church, like^thOse ignorant men, who think nothing right done 
but what they dp themselves."'' , 

The Rev. Joseph Bingham, in that admirable discourse of 

• Beza.iEp. xii, p. 105. ' 

" Binghiam's Anttquities of the Christian Church, yol'i'viii. pp. 309-10. 


his,, entitled »' The French Chujch'^ Apology for the Church of 
England," concludes with "A serious address to Dissenters and 
to the Refugees of the French , Church, to join in constant and 
full Corhmunion with the Church of England." "J have no- 
thing more to do (he ohserves) but to fclosie thjs. discourse with 
a serious exhortation to such persons as are concerned in it, 
who are chiefly suph dissenters as rnake use of the arguments 
I have examined in this book, to justify their separation from 
the Church of England." ' 

Upon this conformfty of the French Church at New Rochelle, 
we find the Venerable Sbciety,making ati annual allowance to 
the Rev. Daniel- Bondet, and directing him t.ouse:the Liturgy 
of the Church of England. At the same time, Governor In- 
goldesby issued the subjoined order titf the Consistory, putting' 
Mr. .Bbndet in pbsseSSioii, of the Church and, its appendages. 



" Richard Ingoldesby, Esq., Lieut. Gov., and Commander in Chief of their Majes- 
ties Province of New- York, New Jersey, &c. ,To,XapJ. Oliver BesJy and his 
Brethern,: Gen. of ye Consi^ory of 'New ^Rochelle in. ye County of Westchester, 
greeting: — ' ' 

Gentlemen, ^ ■ ' ' ' 

The bearer hereof,, Mr. Daniell Boudett,. an orthodox minister of the Church of 
England, haveing laid before me the orders of ye.Right IJono'ke and Right Rev- 
erend iFather in. God, Henry, by Divine mission. Lord Bishop of London and Dioee. 
san of this Province, to bificiate in your Church an4-Parrish' according to ye Rules 
&, Constitution of. the Churck of England, as , by Law Established, bearing date 
June 16th, 1709^, as also a Letter from yeyenerable Society for propagatioji of ye 
Gospel in iforreign parts, tearifag date June 6th, Tsrith an Extract of their Journal- 
Juue 3d, '1709, Constituting aiid appointing; him one of their Missionaries, and a 
yearly axillary for his service in your Church. You are therefore hereby directed to 
receive hilii as such. ' ■• r , 

Given undei: my Haiid & Seal th}s ninth day ^f November, in the eighth year of 

ye Reigii of our Sovereign Lady Queen Anne of Great Britain, &c. , Anne - 

Dni. 1709. 


In Mr. Bondet's report to the. Venerable Society for the year 

1710, occurs the following- extract, :W 

» Doc. Hist, pf %. Y. vol, iiiv p.84L 



" New - 'tork, Uth July, 1710. 

Sir, , ' '• " , ,- ■■' ■•^' 

Our Church is kept up in good order by the fiace of Godj 
notwithstanding the troubles and unexpected oppositions it Itas 
met with, I hqpe through the good'reception that his Excelleti- 
cy has given us at our first visit, that .his equity, apd, prudence' 
will remove those difffcnlties which still remain to,be s^rnwun-. 
ted to the end, that there may be a gobd, understanding aniongst 
us. I : acquainted you in my last, that" we had celebrated, the 
Holy Communion three times at,lhe three quarters, that are 
passed. our conformity, there have beeh^^two other 'quar- 
ters past since, and' for feaT that my 'fast' shqilld not have come 
to" hand, I will repeat to ^you the number of communicants in 
each : — 

10th of. July, 1709, 35 

17th of October, - 29 • 

1st of January, 1709-10, . 38 ", 

9th of April, being Easter Day, 43 

' Uth of June, 32 

Yours <S6C., 
' Daniel Bondet.* , 

At this period it seems the congregation had -so for increased 
as- to. stand in nleed of furtheraecommodation, and to require the - 
erection of a newchurch. Oa the 20th of March, 1709, neafjy three 
mpriths before the conforjnity, GaySj-tjor; Ingoldesby issued, an or- 
der or license, empowering the inhabitants to- erect the same."" 
The undertaking, however, met with such violetit opppsititin 
from the enemies of the Church, th|it nothing seemfS to h'aVe 
been done, either towards locatipg or huilding the proposed ed- 
ifice during the remainder, of Ingoldesby's administration- Thi? 
honor was reserved for his successor. Colonel Robert Hunter, 
who vigorously espoused^ the cause of the Church, and upon 
the 2d. day of August, 1710, issued the following : — 

V ' New York, MSS. from archtvesat Fulham, vol i. 217-10. (Hawks.) 
■■ See County Records, Lib.-R. p. 72. 

AND qatJRCH Oi* few ROdHBLLE. 415 


" By Hi» Exeelleiicy Robert Huuter,%Eaq.,', Capt. General! and Coraman- • 
derjn Chi<^f of her'Majesty's Provinces of New- York, New Jerseyand 
all the TerritoriegDepeuding thereon in America, and Vice Adn^iral 
, " of the.sam.e) &c. / ., — . , . , - 

To,th« Hon'ble Coll. Caleb Heathcote, Cpll. pewisMotris. To the Rev. Mr. 
^on^et, Minister of New Rochelfe, to Capt, Oliver Besley, Dr. Jojiji Neville, Isaiah 
Le Villaau and the other Inhabitants of tlje town of New Roehelle in the County 
of Westchester, Communicants of .the Church of England, as by Law E^tablish.ed. 
Greeting ;.' Whereas,. I am iiffortned of yorar pious design to build, a Church for the 
worship and Service of God 'according to the form and tnanner Prescribed in the 
Liturgy of the Church, of England,^& am applyed to Jor Lycence to erect it -in the 
Publick streets Ihave thought jittSud dde hereby give Leave andTJyc^iice to you 
to Erect such Building ih'sucB Convenient Place of,, the said street as you shall 
thiiik most IRrbper, Providing the Breadth of fluch Church do not Exceed tlfirty 
foot, and further, I (Jo authoHzb and Impower you to Receive and Collect such sums 
of money, and otiier helps as Charitable People shall be disposed to Contribute to 
this good Work. '" "■ ■ . . ', , _ ■, .. 

* Given under myjiand aivd seal at ,New-,York, this second "day of August, 1710. 
. , - '. ■/ ROBERT HUNTER. 

By Ms Excellency's command, George Clarke.." 

-^" Inpureuance of this Lycence, we, .the within Nominated Trustees, appoynted 
byihis, Exeelleiicy for the building of a Church for the worship of Gpfl, aceording to 
•ye Liturgy of the Church of England at New Roohelle, have agreed io.Build it on 
the North side of ye higli street, in the said Town of New Roohelle, in ye County of 
Weetehester, the said feliurch forty foot ijt- length and thiriy foot in breadth, between 
the Dwelling ijoiises of Eraiicis LeConte and' Zachary Aijseuvain, as .J.udgin_g it the 
mpst- Convenient Place. ',' ; ' • f" ■ ■ ■;• j,, 

- Witness Jour hand this Eighth day of Augufet, 1710,. Newfville, Daniel giraud,- 
Isaac Quantin, Debonrepos, Andre- Naudain, daniel bennet, Caleb Heathcote, Lewis 
Morris, Daniel- Bondet, Besley, -E. Valleau, Pierre- Valleau, F, LeConte, ambroise 
-Sicar^V-J- ^-wUain." ' ' 

' As soon as the, site was determined upon, a subscription was 
set on foot for the building of the ^churcH. The names of the 
subscribers and the amount of their contributions are pi^eserved 
in the following doeument :■ — 

"An account of the money collected by the reverend Mr. 
.Sharpe^ Chaplain of the forces of her majesty at Ne'W'.York, 
and Mr. Elias N«aiu, froni the members of the Church of Eng- 

' Doqumentary Hist, of N. Y. vol. iii. pp. 943, 943. 



land, for building a Church at New Rochelle for the 

1 worship qf 

God according to the forme and manner prescribed 

in the Iiif-" 

urgy of Ihe Churcbpf England 5 

His ExceUency, Coll, Hunter, our Governour, 


boll. iSjielioIsoii, 

5 a 

The Rfiyerend Mr. Evens, 

5_ 0, JO 

The Reverend Mr; John Talbot,- 

5 6- e 

The Reverend Mr. John.Sharpe, 

I Hyb 

Tie Reverend Mr, Veaey, 

i 6\0 

The Reverend IDoqtor Innis, 

1 io .0 

'The Reverend Mr. Vaughn, 

1 16 

The ReVererid Mr. Bridge, 

3 Q 

Th&: Reverend Mr^ Thdmas; ' 


, The Reverend Mr. Henry 6oys, ^. ■. 

1 ;d/:o 

The Reverend Mf, Thpmas Barclay, 

r io 3: 

The Reverend ,Mt gglyiayi';: / ■ 

1 , 6 

The Reverend Mr, Bartow, 

1 4 6 

Coll. Bayara, _ ^ 

1-2 a 

Mr. Elias Roffiain,' ' - - . 

1 it (y- 

'Mad. Maekham, 3 dolafs,- 

^18 -'e 

Mr. Jeremiah Colert 3 dolafs, 

ie 9 

Mrs. Mary Laurens 

•O'S fd 

Mr., Nathaniel Marston, 


Mr. Mosent, , , - 

I 5 

- Mr. John Mek-Iany, 

2 7 



Doetor Letrice, 

1 7:, 


1 3^ 

Mr.. Suire, payed, , , 


Cap. Thomas, 

1 ' 6 A 

Coli: Moris,- 

T 5 

Mr. Mastin, 

r ()-'o 

Mr. Bartholemy LeRoux, 

1 3' 

Mr. Reignier, 


Mr. Thomas Dutey, 


Mt. James Nea,u, 

1 10, 

Coll. Graham, .,. 

1 3 

Alexander iS-Oni^, ,- . 

Li 2 0- 

Mr. Elias Nean^' - . . ■ 

rt-a a 

Mr.-Peak, purser, of the Kingsale,;gdolars, - 


Sir. William HacKing,. 

1 .0,^0 

-Jlr. George Clark, 


Mr. John Creok, 

X if' 

Cap. Davis, commander of the Maidsfong, 


Mastei May Vtokley, 

i 30 


Mp. Lawrence Read, 3 dolars, 


Mr. Remison, 

1 2 

Mr. George Nethew, 2 dolars, 


Cap. Cleyton, commander of the Kingsale, 

1 6 

Mr. Christopher Rougby, 


Gapt. Wilson, mayor of the city, 

1 2 

Cap. Lancaster Siraes, 


Mr. Andrew Bornet, 


Lieutenant Tathem, 

1 4 

Mr. Collector Bayesly, 


Daniel Rouet, 


The Commander of the Feversham, , 

1 /; 

Mr. Daniel Airauld, 

1 4 

Capt. Hamilton, 

1 2 

Mr. Robert, of Boston, Merchant, 


Mr. John Read, 


Capt. Gordon, 

1 7 

Coll. Partridge, 


Cap. A. Chalwell, 


Coll. Heathcote, 

3 10 

Dan. Cromelin, 

3 12 

On Board of the Ship Feversham's Company, 

1 1 

From the master of the Feversham's ship. 


From the Purser of the same ship. 


From the Cap. Mostenan, 3 dolars, 

16 6 

From Mr. Lisau, 


From Mr. Livingston, a mayor of Albany, 

09 6 

From Lieutenant Jay, 

6 7i 

From Leftenant More, 

12 4 

Mr. Watts, 

16 6 

Mr. Sharpes, 


Mr. Reggs, 

5 6 

Mad. Hamilton 


The Col. Morris, 


Mr. George Willack, 


By a Legacy from Mr. Zamain, 


By Cap. Wims, 

1 6 

By Mr. Broeck, one dolar. 

5 6 

The subscriptions, though not very large, must be regarded 
in reference to the relative value of money at that period and 
the present. The new church which was begun in the Au- 
tumn of 1710, and completed by November of the same year, 
stood a little east of the present Episcopal church, at the 
entrance of the lane leading to Mr. Elias Guion's former resi- 


dence. The building, which was constructed of stone, form- 
ed nearly a square, being perfectly plain within and with- 
out. So anxious were all to contribute something towards 
its completion, that even females carried stones in their hands, 
and mortar in their aprons, to complete the sacred work. 

Upon the erection of the church, measures were immedi- 
ately taken to secure a Royal Patent for the same, as appears 
from the following :. — 


";To his Excellency Robert Hunter, Esq., Captain General and 

-Governeur in Chief of her Majesties Provinces of new-yorck, 

New Jersey, and Territories Depending thereon in aMerica, 

&c., vice admiral of the same, &c. 

The Petition of Daniel Bcri'^iet, minister, olmer Besle^', ?.vA other Inhabitants 

of New Rochelle, of the communion of the Church of England, in behalf of 

themselves and others, 

HtTMBLY Sreweth : 

That whereas they have been favoured with your Excellency's license Bearing 
date the 3d of August, 1710, Empowering them to collect and Receive the chari- 
table contributions of piously disposed christians and apply them towards build- 
ing a house for the worship and service of God, according to the form and man- 
ner of the Church of England as by Law established, and further Granting unto 
them the priviledge to build and Erect such church in such place of the publick 
Street as to them should seem most convenient and proper. That by virtue Of 
the said Licence and Encouragement and the contributions Thereby collected, 


They have proceeded to build, and have now finished a convenient building for 

■use lorsaid according to the uireutions, limitations, and Restrictions Thereia 

May it Therefore please your Excellency to grant them a patent for the said 

Church, and the ground whereon it stands, that it may be secured for the use of 

the Church of England to them and their posterity for Ever, against all attempts! 

•claims, and pretensions that hereafter may be madte, and your petitioners as in 

'duty bound, shall Ever pray, &c. 

Daniel Bondgt, 
F. Alileau, 
P. Vaileau, 
EuE DeBonrefos." 
New Rochelle, the 11 ih of NoVemler. 

May it please Your Excellency, 
" In obedience to your Excellencie's order in Councill, of ye nineteenth day of 
November last, made on ye petition of Daniel Bondet, and others, for a Patent for a 
Church, lately Erected in the Street of New Rochelle, and for the Ground whereon 
it stands, wee have fully Examined into ye matter of the said petition,- and are 
humbly of Opinion that her Majesty may Grant such Patent for the said Church 
and Ground, according to ye prayer of the said petition. AH which is nevertheless 
submitted to your Excellency, by 

Your Excellencie's Most Obedient, 

humble Servants, 

A. D. Peysteb, 
S. Staats, 
Rip Van Dam, 
Caleb Heathcote, 
T. Byerley.' 

Read 3Ut July, 1711-12." 

For his commendable zeal in Church affairs, Colonel Hunter 
was reviled and misrepresented by those from whom a different 
course might have been reasonably expected. The two follow- 
ing extracts speak for themselves : — •> 

* Documentary Hist, of N. Y., vol. iii. p. 948. 

* " Governor Hunter was as devoted a member of the Church of England as any 
of the early Governors."— Macdonald's Hist, of the PreBbyterian Church in Jamai- 
ca, Long Island, p. 51. 




" New- York, January ZQth, 1711. 
The more I consider of Colonel Hunter's being represented as 
an enemy to the Church, the more I am amazed at it ^ because n«o 
Governor in this Province, that I ever knew, besides Col. Fletch- 
er, did ever as heartily espouse her interest, if we are to judge 
of men by their actions. I think Mr. Bondet and I was about 7 
years in endeavouring to settle the Church at New Rochelle,^ 
but never could thoroughly effect it until he was our Governor, 
who, without giving us the least stop or delay, did every thing 
wte desired of him."» 


"New- York, 20th February, 1711. 
Because the Governor (Col. Hunter) would not go all the 
length they desired, he was industriously represented to the peo- 
ple as no churchman, I can't see what end this could serve, be- 
sides gratifying too much ill nature, except it were the discour- 
aging the Church and encouraging the Dissenters, (if either of 
them should believe the person at the head of affairs here was 
a dissenter,) or really making the Governor what they pretended 
he was. But it was not in the power of some mea that wear 
the Church's livery, by an imprudent conduct to make the Gov- 
ernor an enemy to the Church, •» for no sooner was application . 
made to him in behalf of the church of Kew Rochelle, the 
building of which had been a long time opposed, but he gave 
an order to Col. Heathcole and myself to appoint a place 

* New-York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 356. (Hawks.) 

* In an address of the New- York Clergy to Governor Hunter, May 14, 1712, 
" they thank him for bis favor to Daniel Bondet, and his congregation of French 
Refagees, and generous bounty towards erecting of a new church, and granting 
a Patent for the same to the Church of England, and that the utmost gratitude is 
due for the same." This was signed by D. Bondet and 8 others.— Doc. Hist, of 
N. Y., vol. iii. p. 129. 


for it in the High Street, which we did; saw the founda- 
tion laid, and it is now finished, or very nigh it, being a good 
stone building, and his purse, as well as power, has contributed 
to make it what it is." * 

In the year 1711-12, the Venerable Propagation Society pre- 
sented to Mr. Daniel Bpndet, "for the use of the inhabi- 
tants of New Rochelle, (who, under the influential ministry of 
the Rev. Mr. Bondet, have built them a new church of stone, 
for the worship of God, and are, many of them, reconciled to 
the ways of the Church of England) one hundred French pray- 
er books of the small sort, and twenty of a larger impression." 
In consideration of the great learning and piety of Monsieur 
Bondet, at New Rochelle, and his long and faithful discharge 
of his office, they have augmented his salary from £30 to £50 
per annum.'' Mr. Neau, writing to the Secretary from New- 
York, on the 5th of July, 1710, bears the following testimony 
in regard to Mr. Bondet's character, "most Honored JSir; — 
Mr, Bondet is a good old man, near sixty years of age, sober, 
just and religious."" 

Another supply of one hundred prayer books in French, oc- 
curs in 1713, to the Rev. Monsieur Bondet, minister of the Re- 
formed Congregation at New Rochelle. Upon this, he remarks, 
" The books came very seasonably, and is much to the comfort 
of that people, as to engage their thanks to the Society, for their 
charity in the care of them, when their enemies reported they 
were derelieted." 

The same year, the Society forwarded to the Rev. Daniel 
Bondet, " minister of the French Calvinistic congregation at 
New Rochelle, £.10, in consideration of his diligence and care 
in performing English service every third Sunday, for the edi- 

* New- York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. p. 327. (Hawks.) 

i* The Society's Abstracts say : — " That Mr. Bondet's congregation at New 
Rochelle has a competent number of communicants, and meets for divine ser- 
vice, not only on Sabbath days, but all others appointed by the Church." 

* New York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol i. pp. 216, 217. (Hawks.) ^ 


fication of the French youth who have learnt so much of that 
language as to join with him therein." 

Upon the 7th of February, 1714, Queen Anne, in answer to 
the petition, was pleased to grant and confirm the new church 
or chapel, and the ground whereon it stood, to the minister and 
members in the following manner : — 


"Anne, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, dueen, 
Defender of the Faith, &c., &c., to all whom these presents may come or in any 
wise concerne, sendeth greeting : "Whereas, the inhabitants of New Rochelle, 
in the County of Westchester, &c., with the leave and lycense of our trusty and 
well beloved Robert Hunter, Esq., Captain General and Governor in chief of 
our province of New- York, and territories depending thereon in America, and 
Vice Admiral of the same, have, by the voluntary contributions of well disposed 
Christians, erected and built in the High street of the said town of New Ro- 
chelle — to wit., on the north side thereof, a church or chapel for the worship and 
service of Almighty God, according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church 
of England as by law established ; and whereas Daniel Bondet, now minister at 
, New Rochelle aforesaid, Isaias Valleau, Oliver Besley, Peter Valleau, Elie De- 
bonrepos, in behalf of themselves and other the inhabitants of New Rochelle 
aforesaid, of the Communion of the Church of England, by their petition pre- 
sented to our trusty and well beloved Robert Hunter, Esq., Captain General and 
Governor in chief as aforesaid in Council, have prayed our grant and confirma- 
tion of the said church or chapel and ground whereon the same is erected and 
built, to and for the use of the service aforesaid, the which petition we being 
willing to grant — Knowye, that of our especial grace, certain knowledge, and mere 
motion, we have given, granted, released, ratified, and confirmed, and by these 
presents, for ourselves, our heirs and successors, do give, grant, release and con- 
firm unto the said Daniel Bondet, Isaias Valleau, Oliver Besley, Peter Valleau 
and Elias Debonrepos, and to their heirs and assignees, all that church or chap- 
el aforesaid, and all and singular the ground whereon the same now stands, be- 
ing 40 feet in length and 30 feet in breadth ; the which said church or chapel and 
ground is situate, standing and being in the north side, of the High street of the 
said town of New Rochelle, in the County of Westchester aforesaid, between the 
dwelling houses of Johannes Le Conte and Zachary Anjouvaine, together with 
all and singular the ways, easements, emoluments, profits, benefits, privileges, 
Hbertyes, advantages, hereditaments and appurtenances whatsoever to the same 
belonging, or in any wise of right appertaining, to the estate, right, title, in- 
terest, benefits, advantages, claims and demands in any way of, in, or to the said 
church or chapel; ground and premises, with appurtenances or any part or par- 
cel thereof, and the reversion and reversions, remainder and remainders thereof, 


to have and to hold the said church or chapel ground and premises with the ap- 
purtenances hereby granted, released and confirmed, or meant, mentioned, or in- 
tended to be hereby granted, released, and confirmed, unto the said Daniel Bon- 
det, Isaias Valleau, Oliver Besley, Peter Valleau and Elie Debonrepos, their heirs 
and assignees for ever, to the only proper use and behoof of them, the said Daniel 
Bondet, Isaias Valleau, Oliver Besley, Peter Valleau and Elie Debonrepos, their 
heirs and assignees, for ever in trust, nevertheless and to the intent, the aforesaid 
church or chapel with the appurtenances, may and shall forever hereafter, con- 
tinue, remain, and bo unto all and singular the inhabitants, residents of the said 
town of New Rochelle for the time being, in communion of the Church of Eng- 
land, a free church or chapel for the performing of the worship and services of 
Almighty God, according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England, 
. as by law established, to and for no other service, use, intent or purpose whatso- 
ever, to be holden of us, our heirs and suecessors, in free and common soccage, 
as of our manor of East Greenwich, in the county of Kent, within our kingdom, 
of Great Britain, yielding and paying therefor yearly and every year from hence- 
forth, unto us, our heirs and successors, at or upon the feast of the Nativity of 
our Lord, commonly called Christmas, the yearly rent of one pepper corne only, 
(if the same shall be lawfully demanded,) in lieu and stead of all other rents, dueSj 
duties, services, and demands whatsoever ;' provided nevertheless, that nothing 
herein contained shall be construed, deemed, or taken in any manner to exempt 
the said inhabitants of New Rochelle aforesaid, or any of them, of and from the 
payment of any rate, sum or sums of money now due or hereafter to be due from, 
them or any of them to the parish church of Westchester, in the county afore- 
said, or for or in respect thereof, or ot and from the performances or execution of 
any parochial oifice or duty in the same parish, or to prejudice, or in giving any 
the rights, privileges, emoluments and authorities|of the present rector of the said 
parish of Westchester, aforesaid or the rector of the same parish church for the 
time being, but that the same' shall and may continue, remaine and be as fully 
and amply to all intents and purposes whatsoever, as the same now are, and as if 
this present grant had never been made, anything herein before contayned to the 
contrary thereof in any wise notwithstanding. In testimony whereof we have 
caused these our letters to be made patent, and the seale of our said province of 
New York to our said letters patent to be affixed to the same, to be recorded in 
ye secretary's office of, our said province. Witness our trusty and well beloved 
Robert Hunter, Esq., captain-general and goveruor-in-chief, in. and over our prov- 
ince of New York aforesaid, and territories depending thereon in America, and 
vice-admiral of the same, and in council at our fort at New York aforesaid, the 
seventh day of February, in the tenth year of our reign, and ',m the year of our 
Lord God, 1714."' 

Abjut this period, "the town gave a house and three acres of 

* Alb. Rec. Lib. viii. pp. 1, 2, 3. 


land, adjoining the church, for the use of the clergyman forev- 

During the year 1714, Mr. Bondet, at the request of the So- 
ciety, took charge of the Mohegan or River Indians. 

The next communication from Mr. Bondet to the Venerable 
Society is as follows : — 


" New- York, 3d April, 1714. 

Honored Sir, 
By my last of the 25th of Nov., 1713, if happily come to 
your hand, you are informed of the reception of yours of the 
28lh July, 1712, and of my gratitude to the Honourable Society 
for their bounty, having brought my salary to the rate of £50. 
That seasonable reliefof their equitable regard hath rescued me 
from several inconveniencies, who had rendered the mainte- 
nance of my family difficult and uneasy. I was in a perfect 
resolution to continue my service, trusting in the Lord, that when 
my circumstances should come plainly and truly to be known 
by the Honourable Society, their piety should resolve something 
for my relief, of which you have been pleased to inform me, as 
also of one hundred French common prayer books, who came not 
with your letter, but are come since in very good order. That 
new token of the pious care of the Honourable Society for our 
company, hath renewed our thanks and blessings upon their 
charity and rebuked the temeranious suspicions suggested by 
our contradiction that our labor and confidence should come to 
nothing, being abandoned and left to our weakness, but thanks 
be to God, who hath rebuked the scorns and relieved our simple 
and sincere endeavours, by the continuation of the Honourable 
Society's benevolence and charity, as also by the wise and se- 
rious concurrence of his Excellency, our Governor, Col. Hun- 

" Missions of the Church of England, by Ernest Hawkins, B. D., 282. 


ter, who in that affair, as in all others, hath showed the regard 
of a grave and pious ruler, who, with a philosophic patience 
hears and considers every thing, and with sound judgment, de- 
clares his mind among the contending parties, and with a con- 
stant equity, countenances by his authority the right and law- 
ful claim of his protection. These favourable junctures of 
Providence have produced effects answerable, constancy and 
thankfulness of our people, and a daily increase of consenters 
to the Church. By my antecedent accounts, the Honourable 
Society hath been informed of the number of oUr communicants, 
■which hath been from the beginning of our conformity, four 
times in the year, between thirty and forty communicants of 
our town, sometimes above forty, but this last Easter there was 
fifty communicants ; three families reunited to the flock, which 
were the most sober and sensible persons of our disturbed inhabi- 
tants ; those who remain yet backward^ showing rather the 
humour of seditious^ obstinate disturbers, than the spirit of 
sound, religious christians, but [ live peaceably and civily with 
them, knowing that the most forward, may, by the grace of 
God, turn docile; as I have with patience and moderation 
waited for others, so shall I continue to do for the few remain- 
ing back, ready to help them for their own good and the full 
and perfect gathering of the flock. It remains that I inform 
the Honourable Society, that as I continue to do the service in 
English, every third Sunday, as I did from my first entrance in 
this place, that I have done it till now with a bible of small 
volume and character, that the Honourable Society be pleased 
to allow us the benefit of an English bible, with a small quan- 
tity of English common prayers, because our young people, or 
some of them, have sufficiently learned to read English for to 
join in the public service when read in English. Concerning 
the books I have received from the Society, they are disposed of 
according to their intention, with an exact memorial of the per- 
sons who have received them, and that which remain of those 
or of my own shall be left and conveyed, I hope, to my suc- 
cessor ; entreating the Honourable Society that he may be a 


missionary fit for to perform the divine service in French and En- 
glish as I have done, for the edification of our people, and per- 
petuating the memory of this conformity to the national Church 
of England, in which we shall continue to pray for the life and 
prosperity of her Majesty and dominions, for the preservation 
and welfare of the Church, and as bound by our just acknow- 
'ledp-ment for the most Honourable and Venerable Society, that 
they may continue in present and future generations, examples, 
encouragers, and promoters of true godliness. This premised, I 
recommend myself to your benevolence, and remain, 

Honourable Sir, &c., 

Daniel Bondet."* 

In another letter he thus writes to the same : — 


« New Rocheire, Oct. 17th,- 1716. 
Honored Sir, 
Concerning the present state of our church I have nothing 
thank God to acquaint you with, which discourage my service 
nor the favour of the Honorable Society. We stand orderly and 
peaceably under the protection and favour of our worthy Gover- 
nor. The number of our first disturbers is decreased, who have 
increased our congregation. The door of my heart is always 
open to reconciliation, as the gates of the- church for their re- 
ception. The 2nd of April, Easter Day, we had fifty-two com- 
municants ; the 7th of July, fifty ; the 7th of October we had 
forty seven. The Hon. Col. Nicholson being in these parts in 
the beginning of the Church settlement in this province was 
pleased at his parting to leave in the hands of the Rev. Mr. Ve- 
sey, rector of the church of New York, a bill of £20 to be dis-' 
tributed among the ministers of the Province, who being then 
in convention at New- York, Mr. Yesey declared it to the Assem- 

■ New- York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. pp. 475, 476. (Hawks.) 


bly, which was of seven of us, and as they were about calcula- 
ting how much it was for every one, one of the brethren being 
generously moved towards me, who had then nothing for my 
support but th« poor contribution of New Rochelle, he said, the 
Brother Bondet is the poorer of us, let him have the whole, to 
which all consented, but this disorder of the aifairs of the prayer 
assigned, hath caused the bill to be unpi^id, till of late, that Mr. 
Vesey informed me that he had finally received the money, re- 
membering also how it was agreed in the before mentioned con- 
vention. I said to him, that Providence having since relieved 
and comforted me by the favour of the Honorable Society, that 
I was remitting my pretension to the gift to procure glass to our 
church, which Mr. Ve?e^' liked vp.yv ■wfill,"a 

The following year Mr. Bondet informs the Society of the 
death of Jane Bondet his wife. The subjoined was probably his 
last letter to that Venerable Body, although he continued faith- 
fully at his post more than three years afterwards. 


« New Rochelle, Nov. 12th, 1717. 
Honored Sir, 
That I be not wanting in duty to the Honorable Society and 
their orders, I inform you that I am alive and thank God in 
good health, considering my age, having lost this year my wife, 
God having crowned the hardships of her pilgrimage with a 
honorable end. I keep and rule my house, as I ought to be ex- 
emplary in house ruling as in church ministering. My congre- 
gation continue in the same terms that you have been informed 
by my precedents, forty, fifty and sixty communicants. I have 
of late admitted to the communion two negroes to the sat- 
isfaction of the Church, who heard them often before giving 
promise of their christian instruction, and having good report 
among our people. There is nothing wanting in respect of the 

• New- York, MSS. from archives at FLilham, vol. i. pp. 513, 513. (Hawks.) 


outward order, but as I have represented before that our town 
might have the privilege of ChTirch, and enjoy the benefit of the 
law for to contribute towards the support of the minister who 
serveth them. I pray not on that point by ambition nor as com- 
plaining of any indigence, but it does not look well that a min- 
ister who hath served past twenty years in this province, 
founded a church and put it in the order where it appears to the 
public approbation, be left to voluntary contribution, and the 
contribution raised by law be applied to another place. I 
leave that to your wise consideration, depending entirely on 
the favour and approbation of the Honorable Society for 
which I pray daily, as I am bound in duty, that their good 
works may continue and prosper, to the confirmation and 
propagation of ever truth and godliness. 
I remain. 

Reverend Sir, 

Your very humble servant, 

Daniel Bondet."* 


The latter period of this good man's ministry, (whose age 
and infirmities, at least, should have entitled him to some 
degree of respect,) was embittered by the outrageous conduct 
of the seceders from their own Church, aided by one Mouli- 
nars, and the Consistory of the French Church of New- 
York. It appears that Monsieur Lewis Roux, a man of 
learning and the lawful pastor of the French Church in 
New- York, absolutely refused to abet these seceders, at New 
Rochelle, which ultimately led to his unjust dismissal from 
the pastoral charge, and the usurpation of the above men- 
tioned Moulinars. The whole matter is thus represented by 
Governor Hunter to the Venerable Society : — 

* New York, MSS. from archives at Fulham vol. i. 535-6. (Hawks.) 



" Bath, Sept. 2lst, 1720. 

I had the honour of yours with Mr. Bondet's enclosed. 
Monsieur Roux's moderation procured him the chagrin of a 
colleague of a different disposition, who was not so easy to 
hearken to advice, which was all that was in my power. The 
case stands thus : part of the inhabitants of New Rochelle 
separated from the rest from the time that Mr. Bondet owned his 
Episcopal ordination, and being without a pastor of their own 
they met on Sundays, at Mr. Alard's house, where they con- 
■ tinned their religious exercise after their own manner. Mon- 
sieur Roux, refused to go thither either to preach or administer 
sacraments, being persuaded that they were not without a law- 
ful pastor of their own, on whom he would not intrude, which 
got him enemies amongst the most zealous and considerable of 
his congregation, which ended in their calling an assistant 
tractable to their warm disposition. I foresaw what has hap- 
pened, and begged of Mr. Bondet to enter into no discussions 
with the Consistory at New- York, where his enemies would 
be his judges, but to bear all with patience and to represent it to 
the Society. If the chief of the ministers of the French Con- 
gregational Churches could be persuaded to write to Monsieur 
Molinar to forbare intruding where he has no lawful call, as 
his colleague has hitherto done, I believe that would answer all 
the ends Monsieur Bondet has in view, and keep things quiet 

I am with respect. Sir, 

Your most obedient humble servant, 

Robert Hunter."* 

Monsieur Roux, in a memorial to the Governor, dated New 
York, Feb. 18, 1724-25, says : — " In opposition to this National 

' • New- York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, vol. i. pp. 564-5. (Hawks.) 


Church, they (Moulinars and friends) have entertained and fo- 
mented for several years a scandalous schism at New Rochelle, 
where the incapacity of providing for a minister, obliged the 
inhabitants to establish an Episcopal Church, through the boun- 
ty and protection of the Society in England, and they would 
still support this schism if their M . . . . was not taken up in 
the custody of our church, of which he keeps the keys, in 
order to keep me out unjustly.""- Wonderful to say, throughout 
this dispute, Moulinars and his party not only undertook to 
defend their independency from the discipline of the French 
Church but labored to prove their attachment to the Church of 
England. In answer to the first, Mr. Roux very justly observes, 
(in the above mentioned memorial) " that if he is not mistaken, 
the true principles of the Independent are expressly condemned 
in our discipline." As to the second, he says : — " They have al- 
ways been enemies of the Church of England as by law estab- 
' lished ; they have always railed at her liturgy, her service, her 
Church government, and her ceremonies." This strife contin- 
ued for some. time, until at length, the New- York seceders "be- 
ing fearful of a decree, that might expose their own estates to 
the payment of Mr. Roux's salary, thought it advisable to 
drop their debates, reinstate the minister and leave the 

In New Rochelle the seceders erected a meeting house, styled 
themselves "The French Protestant Congregation," and re- 
mained violently opposed to their lawful pastors, and not only 
so, but in nnposition to their own founders, prescribed the Church 
of England in her doctrine, discipline, ordinances, usages, rites 
and ceremonies, as popish, rotten and unscriptural. How dif- 
ferent this from the views of their great reformer Beza, who 
addressing dueen Elizabeth, says : — " But you, O dueen, and 

* Smith's Hist, of N. Y., pp. 16B, 167. " About the middle of the last century," 
the Historian of N. Y. says " the French Church of N. Y. by the contentions, in 
1724, and the disuse of the French Language is now reduced to an inconsiderable 


your people, by your means, enjoy what perhaps no other king- 
dom does, the complete profession of the pure and sincere doc- 
trine of the Gospel. To which, if you add (what all good men 
hope for, and the. most faithful bishops of your kingdom have long 
desired,) the full restoration of ecclesiastical discipline also ; in 
truth 1 do not see what England can desire more of you, or your 
majesty can confer more upon it."!! Here are none of those 
home-bred charges of superstition, idolatry, anti-christianism, or 
popery, brought against the liturgy ; but it is owned to be the pure 
■worship of God purged from the filth and dregs of anti-chris- 
tianism.^ As the poet Cowper well observes : — 

" All zeal for reform, which gives offence 
To peace and charity, is mere pretence." 

But there is one thing which it will not be amiss to mention 
here, which is, that these seceders not only proscribed the 
established Liturgy of the Church of England, but altogether 
discarded the public Liturgy or Form of Prayers and Adminis- 
tration of Sacraments, which all ministers of the French Church 
were obliged to use in their daily service. Calvin gave this 
advice to the heads of the English Reformation in King 
Edward's days, and we do not doubt but he took care to put it 
in practice in his own country : — " As to what concerns a form o'f 
prayer and Ecclesiastical rites,-' says he, " I highly approve of it, 
that there be a certain form, from which the ministers be not 
allowed to vary : that first, some provision majf be made to help 
the simplicity and unskillful ness of some. Secondly, that the 
consent and harmony of the Churches, one with another, may 
appear, and lastly, that the capricious giddiness and levity of 
such as effect innovations, may be prevented. To which end I 
have shown that a catechism will be very useful. Therefore, 

" Bingham's Antiquities of the Christian Church, vol. viii. 97-8. 
' Mr. Skinner, the grand-father of the late Primus of Scotland, somewhere 
observes, that Subter-stition is quite asibad as Super-stition. , 


there ought to be a stated catechism, a stated form of prayer and 
administration of the sacraments."* 

"If we had no clearer light or evidence concerning the prac- 
tice of the French Church in this matter," says Bingham, « this 
were a strong presumption what it must be, considering how 
great an hand Calvin had in its reformation." But we have 
most certain and undeniable evidence in the case. Their 
Book of Discipline in one canon determines the controversy 
beyond all dispute, chap. 5, art. 32. where it says, " If any 
pastor break the Church's union, or stir up contention about 
any point of doctrine, or discipline, or about the form of cater 
chising, or administration of the sacraments, or of our common 
prayers and celebration of marriage, and conform not to the de- 
termination of the Classis, he shall then be suspended from his 
office, and be further prosecuted by the Provincial or National 
Synod." Here we see conformity to the Liturgy and all its 
parts, as well as to the Confession of Faith and Discipline, is 
made necessary to the Church's union.^" So that Mouliriars 
and his party of seceders at New Rochelle were truly Indepen- 
dents, condemned by the discipline of the French Church. 

The Rev. Daniel Bondet died sometime in September, 1723, 
aged sixty-nine years, having been nearly twenty-six years 
minister of this church. He was eminently useful in keeping 
the congregation together, under its adverse circumstances, and 
as he lived greatly beloved, so he died greatly lamented. His 
mortal remains were interred beneath the chancel floor of the 
old church. His will bears date the 24th of, March, 1721-2, 
and was proved on the 21st of September following. 

" In the Name op God, Amen, The four and twentieth day of March, one 
thousand seven hundred and twenty-two, I, Daniel Bondet, minister of the Gos- 
pel, of New Roohelle, being sick in body but of good and perfect memory, thanks 

• Calvin Ep. ad. Protector. Angl. p. 4169. Bingham's Antiq. of Ch. Ch. vol. viii- 
B. viii. p. 87. 
I" Bingham's Antiq. of Ch. Ch. vol. viii. B. iii. p. 88. 


be to Almighty God, and /palling to remembrance the uncertain state of this 
transitory life, and that all flesh mufet yield untp death, when it shall please God 
to Ciill.;^o make, constitute, Or&in and declsre, thisiiy ast Will and Testa^nen 
in faanuer and form following,! — Revoking^ and Annulling by these presents, all 
and '6V£ry Testament and Testaments, Will .and. Wills hpretdftre' by me made 
and ^pclareU, either by word or writing, and this i§ 'to be taken b-nly for iny la s 
Will and. Testament,; and none othei;. And first, being penitent and.sorry, from thp 
bottom of my heajffi for allmy^sins past, mast htimbly desiring fprgiyeness. for the 
same,'7give and commit my soul unto Almighty X3pd,. my Saviour arid Redeem- 
er in whom, and by the merits of Jestts Christ, an^-bfelieveas'^uredlyto be 
sayed and to haitre fall^ remission and forgiveness of all, my Sins, and thatmyspul 
with- my body at the general Day of Resiirr^ctioff shall rise a^aiin .with joy, and 
through the merits, of Christ, seek and; pas? in, possess and inherit the ICingdom 
of Heaven prepared for, his Elect and Chosen : and' my body tp b? buried in such 
place wJiere it shall please my Erecutors iereafter named to appoint. And now 
for the sealing; of my Tempbral Estate, and such Goods, Chattels and Debts,, as 
it hast pleased God for alone my Deserts to bestow upon me. I do; order, give 
and dispose of Ihe. 'same in.manner following: that is to say, Fikst, I wfl} that all 
those Deljts and duties ^tM'.I ojye in Eight or' Conscience' to' ariy manner of per^ 
son or persoiiB whatsoever, shall be and Iruly .contented and paid or ordained to 
be' paid, within convenient time after my ''decease, by ndy "Executors hereafter 
named. iTEM-t^-LtSiveibequeath and 'boptitute for my only heirs, Lieutenant 
Oliver Besley, Jun,, of .NewEoiehelle! desireing him after my Decease to come 
'and take po^sessioii of all-my;goods, phaltels and .de})ts,' with abligatiop's which is 
belonging- to me, with a.Ne^ro Woman called Toinetta, Ready' Money,' Plates, 
Jewells, -fiings, .Household Stuff, 'Apparels, Utensiisj.BrasSy Pewter, Bedding and 
all 6t'h;?r"of my substance .;wha{so'^ver, moveable and immoveable. Item. — I do 
Give to Bety-Cantin, oiie. obligation from 'Peter, '.whicii 'is now in the hand' and 
.possession of her Father.Jean Cajititi, and that she shall have from this pie'sient 
time and hereafter, lawful for' hef to receive the said Due, Debt or Interest to her 
iJroper use or benefit, iwi'thduir molestation 'hereafter, from any body whatsoever. : 
.Item.^I do gi-ve to' Judith.,:Robinseau, fk little Negro Girl, named Charlotte, , few 
te'r .pro-'perose and .benefit, without, mQiestatism':hereaffe5 from any body whatso- 
ever; f lTEM:-rI do give to t£ie, use of the Churc^i'eC NW Eochelle all my Books. 
/9i«?«^>isjia'VB'put-;^y Wndaadseal, this twenty 'fQiiith d'ay of March, 1731-2. 
'■' ';',:' '■ ,- ■ '; , ' '."." i ' ' ."■ Daniel'Bondet,: (p.s.),. 

' Seated aijd signed m presence ofilsi Isaafc Mercier^-, Amaa Guyons, Geasar, F. 

' P-uritig the interval between the;^€a.£h;of Mr. Daniel Bondet 
and the appoihtment of his successor, services were periforraed 

• Rec, of Wills, Surrogate's Office,: N, Y.i;.5S!l.;is, p.,332,333. 



by the Rev. John Bartow, rector of the, parish, as appears . from 
the following communication to the Honorable Society :-^- 


" New York, Nov. l5(/i,172Z. 
Worthy Sir, ,, , 

By the death of the late Rev. Mr. Bondet, last September, the 
care of I^ew Rochelle is wholly devolved on me, till the Rev- 
erend arid Honorable Society be pleased to send anptheK ini§i.; 
sionary for that place, "which I hope will be speedily, beirig un- 
fit to travel so far at fixed times by reason of age and uncer- 
tain indispositions, but by Gfod's leave, shall attpnd the care of 
that people as much as I can without doing wrong to the rest 
of my parish. I preach how at four towns, Eastchester, West- 
chester, Yonk.ers and New Rochelle;; the last, eight miles, Yoa- 
kers six miles, Eastchester four from home, and "do other occa- 
sional ofiices. I have preached twice at New Rochelle sitice 
Mr; Bondet died, and intend, Ged willjng, to. administer: the 
sacrament of the Lord's Supper there the first Sunday in the 
next month. According to the propojtion of their annual pay- 
ment iOAhe Church, I must preach there about; eight Sundays 
in the year, and if the Society do think. me worthy, should be 
glad if they would allow me something for travelling charges 
until they send another missionary; Mr. Bondet bequeathed, in 
his last will all his bpolcis to the use of the Church. Mr. John 
Pell, Lord of the Manor of Pelham, of whidi New Rochelle is 
a part, has given one hundred acres of land within, the said 
manor, which land Mr. Bondet enjoyed to the.use of the 
Church for ev6r.. A house and about thres acres cf larid adjoin- 
ing New Rochelle church was given by the town to the church 
for ever, all which I do pre?uriid have and do belong to me,, 
durante vitae, but should gladly acquit all to such naissioaary of 
the Church as the Society shall think fit to send, together with 
the perquisites as Mr. Bqndet enjoyed them. I humbly pray 
that the Society would send them a missionary that can preach 
to them in their mother tongue^ and that he be desired to preach 
once a month in English, at fiastchester, for I can't attend the 


people so often as they require, which was the occasion about 
three years sirice of the hiring a Presbyterian minister, who' is 
now removed to Bedford witViin the parish of Rye, of which the 
Rev. Mr. Jenny has undertaken the, care of, with the Society's 
approbation. I now by thp bearer received my money of Mr. 
Perry,. about which I have been so-impertinent to you, through 
a mistake, and liumbly beg the Society's pardon and venerate 
their justice, and; shall not fcease to pray for the blessing of God 
on their pious endeavors, who am. Sir, 

Your humble and obedient servant, 

John Bartow."* 

In 1723, Mr. Bartow received from the Society £10 for his 
exfta services atNew Eochelle. Mr. Bondet was succeeded in 
1724 by the 


This individual was also a native of Prance, and nearly re- 
latfed to, if not a sb^ of the Rev. Mr. Slouppe, minister of the 
Fren<ih Church in London, ■tvho w^as sent by Oliver Cromwell 
in 1654 to Geneva, ;fo negpciate in affairs relating to the French 
Protestants.'' He' was born in 1690, studied divinity at Geneva, 
arid afterwards accepted a call as ttiinister to the French Church 
of Charleston, in South Carolina., Hefe fie continued until 
the Summer of 1723, when he resigned his charge,. conformed to 
the Church of England, and crossed Mie Atlantic to be ordained. 
At Christmas, 1723, he was admitted to,, holy orders, by the 
Rt. Rev. Edmund Gibson, D. D., the then tiord Bishop of Lon- 
don, and licensed to ofliciate as a missionary in the Goyern- 
ittent of New-York. At the same time he was appointed the 
Yenerable Society's missionary to New Rochelle, with a salary 
of £.50 per annum: In'' July, 1724;,- he' recei'/ed his commis- 
sion from Governor Burnet. He proved very acceptable to his 
flock because he could preach in French, whichdanguage only 
most of them understood. In 4724, the Society's Abstracts 

• New- York, MSS. from archives at Fulham, toI, ii. 583-3. (IJawte..) 

* Dr Vaughan's .Protectorate- of Cromwell, vol; i.^p. 13. '.' , ' '- 


say : — ■" That Mr. Stouppe's congregation is much increased since 
his arrival, and that the number of his communicants is thirty- 
eight." ' . 



' -• , Neie RQcheUe, lT24,ihe 12W Qetakr. 

Q: - How long js^t since you ■^ent over to the plantations as a missionary t 

A. Tfour'IiOlsiS'Hip, knows that I went over as a missionary but since the last" 

; Qt. Have you had any other church before you came' to that which you now 
possess ; and if you had what church was it, and hpw long have, you been re- 
moved 1 r ■ ' , \ • ."■■.■•'. 

A. I had the Fiench church of -Charleston, in South Carolina, and left itahout 
eighteen months ago. ■ ■- . 

a. Have you been duly licensed by the Bishop.of London to ofiiciate aS;a mis- 
sionary in. the Government where you now are ■? /, . 

A. I have been, licensed by your Lordship himself. . : 

CI. How.Ionghav^you been inducted into your liringl, .' 

A. I have been inducted since the month of July last. 

CI., Are you ordinarily a resident in the parish to -which you have been in- 
dactedl . 
■A.' I reside constantly there. ' , . . , . .» 

Q. Of what extent is your parish and how many families are there in it ! , 

A. The extent of jl is two miles in length and three miles in breadth, and js 
reckoned to contain seventy families, among whom are some Presbyterians. 

Q. At^ there any Infidels, bond, or free, within your parish, and what means ara 
Used for their conversion 1 ._ ' , .' 

A. There is iu all but a few negro slaves, some of which come on Sundays out 
of their free will to church without their master's order, but no other means ar^ 
lised for their conversion. 

■ Q. How oft is divine service performed in your church ; and what proportion- of 
the parishioners attend it ? ^ '■■ , , " ' ; 

A^ Divine service is perfoimed twice every Sunday, in the morning and evening, 
and upon Christmas day, Easter day and Communion days j there is a preparation 
sarmon Upon some day of the week, which as well as other public service is always 
attended by the most part of the parishioners conformed to the Church. 

Q.. How oft is the sacrament of the Lord's Supper administered ; and what is the 
usual number of ooinjnunicante ^ 

A. The sacrament of the Lord's Supper is administered four times a year, and 
the number of communicants is sometimes more, sometimes less, but commonly be- 
tween forty and fifty. , ; - . 

Q. At what time do you catechise the youth of your parish 1 


'A. The youth is catedHised all the Suminer long, six or seven months iu the year. 

Q. Are. all things duly disposed and provided in the church for the decent and 
ordferly performance of divine service ? 

A. Every thing is provided iu the churoh for the decent and Orderly performance 
of the service according to "tljB church's ability. 

Q. Of what value is your living in sterling money and Ko«r does it arise 1 > 

A. I cannot tell your Lordship of what value my living will "be in sterling 
mouey, depending only upon voluntary contributions, and having not yet received 
one farthing to that purpose ; the people is but very poor, and besiijes, New Bochelle 
is iiieluded ill Westchester parish. They are obliged topay towards Mr. Bartow's 
salary, a^pomted to hhji- by act of Assembly, which rendered theiii incapable of 
doiiig anything for mff, except otherwise should be provided. 

Q. Have you a house .»nd gleb<> ; Js your glebe in lease or let by the year, or is it 
occupied by yourself? 

A. There is a house and^ue hundred acres of laUd belonging to it, but at some 
distance, which land is let by the year for four pence sterling an acre. 

Q. Is -care takeli to preserve your house iu good repair ^nd at whose expense is it 
done ? ' , -,,-■-. 

A'. There is but indifferent care taken to preserve the parish House in good repair, 
and as for the expenses, they are taken upon the nlembers ofthe Ohurch each one. 

Gl. Have you more cures than one, if you have, what are they, and in what 
manuer'se^vgd ? > t 

A I .hav«:'nO other cures than the aforesaid. 

Q,. Have you iii your parish any public school for, the instruction of youth ? 

A." There is no' public school within the precinct of New Rophelle — the parents 
take' dare to instruct their own children. ' 

Q,. Have you a parochial library ; if you have, are the books preserved, and kept 
in gqpd; condition ; have you any particular rules and ojjders for^ the preserving of 
them ; are these rules and orders duly observed ? 

A. My pfedece^sor, Mr Bondet, has' left four hundred velumes for the lise of the 
church for ever ; they ara kept in pretty good condition, bat I know no particu- 
lar rules of preserving thSm-. . "' 

My Lord, &c., 

At the date of Mr. Stonp's arrival^ the elders or ancients (as 
they are sometimes styled,) of this, chiirch, Were Isaac Q.uan- 

• New-York, MS9. from archives atTulham, vol, i. p. 673. (Hawks.) 


tein and Isaac Guion, The following^ extract is taken from 
Mr. Stouppe's first letter to theS ociety : — 


" New Rochelle, Province of New-'Yorkj 

Majf Ti2th, 1725. : 


But there are yet thirty families unconformed within New 
Rochelle bounds, and were it not for fear of the eager censures 
of Mr. Moulinars, one of the French ministers of New- York, 
who comes quarterly amongst them, and some of the most 
creditable rpembers of his congregation, who jointly with hrrii 
do support their separatipn from the Church, all those yet dis- 
senting families, without exception, would have been come over 
to it already. The proceeding is so unjust that I caniiot for- 
bear to complain of, and set down to the consideration of the 
Honorable Society, some of the arguments they make use of to 
keep the Dissenting inhabitants of New Rochelle in their divi- 
sion, from the Church and even to pervert, if possible, its truest 
defenders. They not only at all occasions inspire theta with a 
disadvantageojis opinion of the Church of Englarld, but they 
raile in a plain manner at its Liturgy and Ceremonies. The 
said Mr. Moulinars has declared (as can be proved) that he 
finds our Church and that of Rome as like one another as two 
fishes can be, besides, the said minister and his party have 
threatened the yet dissenting French inhabitants of New Ro- 
chelle of breaking with them all commerce, and of suspending 
all acts of charity and support towards them, if ever they should 
dare to join themselves at any time to the Church, nay, for in- 
stance, the said Moulinars and his party convinced long ago of 
Mr. Roux, the other minister of the French in New-York, and his 
inclination and good affection to the Church, and of Ms always 
openly blaiming and disapproving Mr. Moulinars, his colleagues 
irregular practices against the Church in general, and especial- 
ly his keeping up and fomenting our unhappy divisions in NeW 


Rochelle. The said Mouliftars and his party in revenge, have 
pretended to depose Mr. Roux, and suspend him accordingly 
of ail" his accustomed ministBrial functions amongst them, as 
you may see it more largely in this collection of papers on that 
siibjfict which I beg of yott to put, into the Honorable Society's 
hands, and which will justify in general the matters I here 
acquaint them with. They will find that one of the chiefest 
reasons of this violence against Mr. Roux, has no other ground 
than his constant affection to the Church, and the public appro- 
bation he has at all times and occasions given to its ceremo- 
nies and doctrine, arid this affair iS so far gone that the Hon- 
orable Cpuncil'of this province could not forbear to take notice 
and to interpose their mediation and authority, which having 
been unsuccessful oil the French dissenters part, Mr. Roux in- 
tends by the advice of his friends to carry his. complaints into 
Chancery, where it is not doubted but he will find protection 
and justice. I thought it necessary to make you this relation 
that the Honourable Society might be more sensible of the great 
prejudice Mr. Moulinarg and his ^dh^reiits do in generalto fhe 
Chur9h of England, and. in particular to that of New Rochelle.) 
and that there is no unlawful practice which t-hey scruple to 
make use of for the detriment of it. After Mr. Bondett's, my pre- 
decessors death, they engaged the dissenters to build a meeting 
house about two hundred yards distant from the church in which 
I officiate twice every Sunday, they incited them also to reclaim 
the one hundred acres of land which -Mr. Bondet enjoyed, and 
which were given by the fjord Pell to the use of the Church, in 
order to deprive me of it; and not withstanding all the friendly 
presentations made from time to time to the said Mr. Moulinars 
by some gent of this cou-atry, and also by the late Lord Bishop of 
London, of which, Masfer Aufere, one of the Society members, 
mety givff a more full and exact account, all this, I say, did not 
prevail with hint, nor induce him to keephis own congregation 
and not to intrude himself into those of others, and consequent- 
ly not to trouble their union and peace. He also of late eagerly 
coiisumed some of the dissenters of New Rochelle, who to 
expenses and inconveniences they would lay under in bringing 


their children to York to be christened by him, or who by 
rfeason of having no aversion from the Church do not think fit 
to defer tiieir baptism till he come amongst them, according to his 
desire have required me to baptize them. I heartily wish the 
Honourable Society would pity our assaulted Church and take 
some effectual means for the removing^ of the cause and io- 
strument of thaunhapy divisions we are in ; our endeavours here 
without their assistance having proved of but little and of none 
effect. For there, is no irregular practice which in their opinion 
is not supported, and which they do not find justified and au- 
thorized by the benefit of toleration and liberty of conscience 
granted to them, in such manner they abuse that great and in- 
estimable priviledge. You will, Rev. Sir, very much oblige mg 
in giving me notice as soon as possible, of the Honourable Soci- 
ety's intention and resolution about that, affair. 

I am, Reverend Sir, <fcc., 

Peter Stouppe!" 

Writing- to the Propagation Society in 1726, he thus', de- 
scribes the state of his church : — "That he has baptized sis 
grown negroes and seven negro children, fitted eight yofing peo- 
ple for the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, to which they have 
been accordingly admitted, and that the number of his commu- 
nicahts at Easter last, was thirty-three."* 


" New Rochelle, Dec. Mth, 1727. , 

Reverend Sir : 

According to the Honorable Society's order, signified unto me 
by your last of the 16th June, 1717, here you have the best ac- 
counts I could get iipon the several heads and matters intimated 
unto me in the aforesaid years. 

1st. As to the church. It was built in the year 1708, upon the 

• New- York, MSS. frofli archives at Fulliam, vol. i. pp. 665-6-7t8. (Hawj^.).; 


public or-king's roajfl, of strong materials, joist together with 
mortar, the inside plastered and white washed, of 4,0 feet length 
and 30:breadtib. Partly hy its pyira members, the inhabitants of 
New Rochelle, who gave it a number of days work toward? it,, 
partly, by the contributions of "the following charitable persons, 
members of .the Church of England or, well wislierg to it, set- 
tled in dirers^parts- of this province as you will see by the list 
here set down and recorded in ,pur church book. 

Fifty paces from the said churqh, there is a glebe of three and 
a. half acres of land, upon part of .which stakds the parish house 
or the minister-'s dwelling place, built of wooden materials, the 
inside plastered, consisting of two rooms on a floor, a garret and 
a small- kitchen house, the other part of said glebe serves for a 
dwelling place. 

The salary subscribed for the minister by the members of 
New Rochelle church amounts at present to £10 19s. money 
of this province, of which, through negligence or pretended pov- 
erty of the subscribers there is little mqre than half part of 
it actually paid, so that the provisioris <i{ firewood which they 
make to their minister for the time being, is by much the better 
part of his salary, though little in itself 

There is no other endovirment beloriging to the Church that 
I know of. This is all what I can say upon that head. 

2ad. 1 come now to the second. The number of people that 
first settled New IJ^pchelle was about a dozen pf fainilies, the 
most part of them were in Europe, tra4ing, merchants ; being 
French refugees, they were all at first addicted to the Confes- 
sion of Faith of the formerly Reformed Protestant Church of 
France, These.few families, I say, , have conjointly bought of 
the Lord Pell, 6000 acres of land and divided it into, lots ai^d 
parcels, from 20 tp30, 40, 50, 60, 100, 2,00 and 300 acres a piece ; 
have sold afterwards the said lots and parcels