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Eliot Annivet^sary, 

1 646- 1 896. 


Memorial Exercises, 

NOVEMBER 11, 1896. 






Newton Uitek Falls, 





Report of Joint Special Committee 3 

jMessage of Mayor 7 

Official Orders 8-9 

Mayor Henry E. Cobb i- 

Order of Exercises 13-14-15 

Eliot Memorial Terrace, Eliot Road 12 



Introduction — Mayor Henry E. Cobb . 19 

Prayer — Rev. George Wolfe Shinn, D. D. . . . • • 21 

Address — Rev. William H. Davis, D. D . -25 

Address — John T. Prince, Ph. D. .....•• • 33 

Remarks — Dr. Ellsworth Eliot 4° 

Chairs of John Eliot 4° 

Eliot Essays — Conditions etc 4^ 

Presentation of Prizes — Remarks by George I. Aldrich, Supt. of Schools, 43 

Address — Rev. Benjamin F. McDaniel 47 

Mayor Cobb's Thanks to Scholars for Essays 52 


Introduction — Mayor Henry E. Cobb 57 

Prayer — Rev. Edward M. Noyes 59 

Oration — William Everett, LL. D 63 

Address — William Carver Bates . . . . • • ■ -87 

Benediction — Rev. Daniel L. Furber, D. D 95 

Order of City Council — Accepting Eliot Memorial etc 97 

Indenture— Conveying Eliot Memorial Terrace and Eliot Memorial Fund, 99 

Marriage Record of John Eliot's Parents 105 

Baptismal Record of John Eliot 105 

Eliot Memorial — Ponkapog 106 

Eliot Monument — South Natick 107 

Eliot's Gravk — Eustis Street Burying Ground 108 

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In the 15oaki) ok Mayou ano Aluermen, 

February i, 1897. 

To the City Cotuuil of Nnvton: 

The joint special committee appointed to arrange for an appropriate com- 
memoration of the life and work of Rev. John Eliot, under the auspices of the 
City Government, present their report in the following pages, giving a verbatim 
record of the exercises at the drill hall and in Eliot Church. 

The committee is under special obligations to the Hon. William Everett for 
his oration, and to the several citizens whose addresses and other services added 
to the general interest of the occasion. 

Henry Tolman, Edwin B. Haskell, 

James T. Allen, William P. Ellison, 

Kirk W. Hobart, William C. Bates, 

Lewis P. Everett, S. E. Howard, 

George M. Cranitch, F. A. Dewson, 
Robert R. Bishop, 

Isaac F. Kingsbury, Clerk. Henry E. Cobb, Mayor. 



No. 20267 CITY OF NEWTON. 


Mayor's Office, June 30, 1896. 

Message to the City Council: 

Several prominent citizens having called my attention to the fact that October 
28 of this year will be the 250th anniversary of the beginning of the Apostle 
Eliot's mission to the Nonantum Indians, I desire to submit that such a memorable 
event in the early history of our City should be properly noticed by your Honor- 
able Board, and that such measures should be adopted as shall suitably impress 
upon our citizens, and especially upon the rising generation, the noble lessons of 
consecration to God and humanity, which his life and labors illustrated. 

I therefore recommend that a joint committee of members of this Council and 
representative citizens be appointed to consider the subject, with full power to 
arrange for such a function as they shall deem wise, and that a suitable sum be 
appropriated for defraying any necessary expenses. 

HENRY E. COBB, Mayor. 

In the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, June 30, 1S96. 

Read and filed. Sent down. 

I. F. KINGSBURY, Clerk. 

In Common Council, 30 June, 1896. 
Read and filed. 




In the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, 

June 30, 1896. 


That a committee, consisting of His Honor the Mayor, two aldermen, three 
members from the Common Council, and six citizens, to be designated by the 
Mayor, be and is hereby appointed to make suitable arrangements for the cele- 
bration, on October 30 next, or on such date as the committee may appoint, of the 
250th anniversary of the beginning of the Apostle Eliot's mission to the Nonan- 
tum Indians; and further that the sum of two hundred and fifty dollars ($250), 
to be charged to Miscellaneous Expenses, be and is hereby appropriated therefor, 
and all expenditures under this order to be charged thereto. 

In the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, June 30, 1896. 
Read twice and adopted. Sent down for concurrence. 

I. F. KINGSBURY, Clerk. 

In Common Council, June 30, 1896. 
Read twice and adopted in concurrence. 

Approved July i, 1896. 

HENRY E. QO'AV,, Mayor. 


Aldermen Henry Tolman and James T. Allen. 

Councilmen Kirk W. Hobart, Lewis P. Everett, and George M. Cranitch. 

Hon. Robert R. Bishop, William C. Bates, Esq., 

Edwin B. Haskell, Esq., Capt. S. E. Howard, 

Hon. William P. Ellison, Maj. F. A. Dewson. 



No. 20706 CITY OF NEWTON. 

In the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, 

December 9, 1896. 


That the sum of two hundred and fifty dollars ($250), to be taken from any 
unexpended money in the City treasury, or from the Assessment and Collection of 
Taxes for 1897, be and is hereby appropriated to meet the expenses and report of 
the committee on the John Eliot Memorial. All amounts expended to be charged 
to said appropriation. 

In the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, December 9, 1896. 
Read twice and adopted. Sent down for concurrence. 
Five yeas. Alderman White absent. One vacancy. 

I. F. KINGSBURY, Clerk. 

In Common Council, December 18, 1S96. 
Read and laid over, under the rules. 


In Common Council, December 21, 1896. 
Read a second time and adopted in concurrence. 
Ten yeas. Councilmen Hobart, Parker, Perry, and Roberts absent. 


Approved December 22, 1896. 

HENRY E. QOV,V,, Mayor. 

EXERCISES NOV. 11, 1896. 



:250tli Aninveivsciry of the Work of 

Rev, jo 



III Civiliziiio- and Cliiistiaiiiziiip- the Indians of New Ensfland. 
Begun at Nonantuni, October 28, 1G46. 

. Wednesday, November ii, 1896. 

Committee of Arrangements under 
order of City Council: 

His Honor, HEA'IiV E. COBB, Mayor, Chairman. 

Alderman JAMES T. ALLEN, 
Councilman KIRK W. HOBART, 
t;ouncilnian GEORCE M. CRANITCM 
Councilman LEWLS P. EVERETr, 

Capt. S. E. HOWARD, 


Clerk of Committees. 


Wednesday Afternoon, 3 o'clock, Nov. nth, 1896. 

. . . AT . . . 
DRILL HALL, Newton High School. 

INTRODUCTION by His Honor the Mayor, HENRY E. COBB. 

PRAYER - - - - Rev. George Wolfe Shinn, D.D., Grace Church. 

CHORUS.— Song of Peace Stdlivaii. 

ADDRESS - . - . Rev. William H. Davis, D. D., Eliot Church. 

CHORUS.— Bright Golden Days - - - Gaul. 

ADDRESS John T. Prince, Ph. D. 

PRESENTATION of Prizes for Ehot Essays by His Honor The Mayor. 

CHORUS.— To Thee, O Country Eichberg. 

ADDRESS - - Rev. Benjamin F. McDaniel. 

Newton Centre Unitarian Society, 

CHORUS. — America and Doxology. 

Music in charge of Horace Alann Walton, 
Director of Music in the Piddic Schools. 


Wednesday Evening, 7.45 o'clock, Nov. nth, 1896. 

. . . AT . . . 


ORGAN \'OLUNTARY.— March Religious Adam Best. 

Introductory Address by His Honor the Mayor, HENRY E. COBB. 
PRAYER ------ Rev. Edward M. Noyes, First Church. 

CHORUS. — Eliot Church Choir. " How Lovely are the Messengers." 

St. Fa III. Afendelssohn. 

ORATION.— Life and Work of Eliot. 


SOLO.— "Be Thou Faithful Unto Death." - - - St. Paul. Mendelssohn. 

William H. Du.niiam. 

ADDRESS —Eliot at Nonantum. 

I Presentation of Eliot Terrace and Eliot mt, ,,,.,. r^.„,,^.. r>..„„„ 

( Memorial Fund to the City of .Newton. WlI.LIAM CaRVEK BaTES. 

CHORUS. — Eliot Church Choir. "Gloria." St. Cecilia - - - Gounod. 

BENEDICTION ------ Rev. Daniel L. Furber, D. D. 

Pastor Emeritus First Church. 

Music in charge of William //. Dunham, 
Director of Eliot Church Choir. 

Miss Belle Marks, Organist. 

"Upon October 28, 1646, four of us, (having sought God) 
went unto the Indians inhabiting within our bounds, with 
desire to make known the ways of their peace to them."* 

"Upon November 11, 1646, we came the second time to 
the same wigwam of Waabon, where we found many more 
Indians met toofether than when we first came to them."* 

Here at Nonantum, October 28, 1646, in Waban's wigwam, 
near this spot, John Eliot began to preach the Gospel to 
the Indians. Here was founded the first Christian 
community of Indians within the English Colonies. 

Inscription of the Eliot Terrace. 

1646. Heath. Shepard. Gookin. Waban. 1879 

"This towne the Indians did desire to know what name 
it should have, and it was told them it should be called Noon- 
atomen, which signifies in English, rejoicing, because they hear- 
ing the word and seeking to know God, the English did rejoice 
at it, and God did rejoice at it, which pleased them much, and 
therefore that is to be the name of their towne."* 

*The Day Breaking, If not the Sun Rising of the Gospel 
with the Indians of New England. London, 1047. 


Two Hundred and FiFTii-ynr Annivkksaky 

November 11,1 89C>. 

The afternoon exercises were held in the drill hall of the Newton High 
School on Walnut Street, Newtonville, at 3 o'clock. There was a large attend- 
ance, including the pupils of the High School, and many others. 

His Honor Mayor Henry E. Cobb opened the exercises of the occasion with 

the following introductory remarks : 


Young Ladies and Gentlemen of the Piddle School^ of Newton, 
a7id Friends: 

Your city fathers have called you together this afternoon 
for a lesson in histor}^ and I shall leave the teaching of that 
lesson to those more competent to impart it, who sliall 
follow me. 

But I do wish l)riefly to call your attention to a charac- 
teristic of the beginnings of our national life which finds no 
parallel since the days of the Hebrew Commonwealth. Our 
Pilgrim Fathers struck the key note in that opening sentence 
of the compact which they entered into in the cabin of the 


Manflower before tliey landed on these shores, "In the name 
of God. Amen!" 

Mrs. Hemans has well expressed it in her grand lync. 

" Not as the conqueror comes 
They, the true hearted, came; 
Not with the roll of the stirring drum 
Or the trumpet that sings of fame. 

" Not as the flying come, 
In silence and in fear; 
They shook the depths of the desert's gloom 
With their hymns of lofty cheer. 

" What sought they thus afar? 
Bright jewels of the mine? 
The wealth of seas, the spoils of war? 
They sought a faith's pure shrine. 

" Aye, call it holy ground. 

The soil where first they trod; 
They have left unstained what there they found, 
•Freedom to worship God." 

They built the chnrch and the school-house that they 
might ensure for tlieir new home Godliness and intelligence. 

And we are to consider to-day the character of a 
man in full accord with the high ideals and lofty purposes 
of the founders of New England — one who gave a long and 
active life to the service of God and humanity, on these hills 
and amid these valleys of our beloved municipality^ 

You will hear of his love for benighted souls in the 
history of his la1)ors among the Indians of Nonantum, and his 
high estimate of the value of education and his self sacrifice 
to promote it in the liberal provision he made for giving the 
means of acquiring knowledge to the youth of his parish. 

I trust the services of this hour may inspire in us all a 
deeper reverence and a broader philanthropy. 



Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, we give Thee 
fervent praise that Thou didst send Thy Son, Christ the 
Lord, into this world to minister unto others. 

We bless Thee that His life of self sacrifice has been 
the inspiration of so many, in all the ages since, who have 
denied themselves that others might be the richer, and who 
have learned that it is more blessed to give than to receive. 

We praise Thee for tlie example of the apostles who 
counted no labor too hard, and no peril too deadlv — that 
they might carry the message of good will to the nations of 
the earth. 

We praise Thee for the martyrs who counted not their 
lives dear unto them, if by tlieir dying the}" might show men 
tlie truth of Thy gospel. 

We praise Thee for all the great company who have 
toiled and sacrificed, that in some waj^ their own generation 
and the generations then of the future might be uplifted. 

To-day we give Thee special praise for the good example 
of Thy servant, who sought to win from paganism to the 
gospel the Indian people of this neighborhood. 

We treasure the memory of John Eliot, the friend of 
the Indians, who being Thy joyous servant, would lead 
others to serve Thee, and to know the blessedness of a life of 


obedience to Tliee, the only true God. For all tlie noble 
work he did, for his patient study of their language, for his 
long continued missionary labors, for his zeal and industry as 
a teacher among them, for his great wisdom and sincerity 
and purity, and for his consistent example under trying 
circumstances — we give Thee thanks. 

And now that we have assembled to commemorate this 
man and his work among the Indians, we pray Thee to make 
this occasion and all other similar occasions productive of 
greatest profit to us all, and to the community. 

Revive among us an appreciation of unselfishness as an 
element of Christian character; deepen our admiration of that 
heroism which wins victories for the cross of Christ; quicken 
our sympathies for the nations who are as yet without the 
gospel ; inspire and direct our efforts to advance Thy cause 
upon the earth. 

Although we may not be called upon to attempt work 
so hard and great as was his, help us to cultivate a like faith 
and a like determination to do well whatever we attempt. 

May the lessons we are to learn from his life be helpful 
to us all. May the exercises of this day be blessed to the 
welfare of young and old in this community. 

Keep before us the example of his patient continuance 
in well doing, of his noble and unselfish life, so that each 
one of us may accomplish something for Thy glory and for 
the welfare of mankind. 

These our prayers. Almighty God, we offer in all humility 
to Thee in the name of Thy dear Son, who taught us to say : 

"Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy 
name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as 



it is in heaven. Give us tliis day our dailv bread. And 
forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive tliosc wIid 
against us. And lead us nut into temptation: lail deliver 
us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, 
and the glory for ever and ever. Amen. 

The High School Chorus, under tlie direction of Mr. 
Hoi-ace Mann Walton, director of music in the public schools, 
rendered Sullivan's "-Song of Peace." 

Mayor Cobb. — I have the pleasure of intioducing to 
you, as the next speakei-, Ivev. Dr. Davis of tlie Rliot Cliurch. 



[Reported stenograpliically.] 

I feel like inovino- a vote of thanks to the city fatliers for 
putting a part of the commemoration of the life and labor 
of John Eliot into the public schools, as well as into the 
churches and into the City Government; for certainly it is a 
patriotic service that brings us together this afternoon. For 
John Eliot was tlie patron saint of Newton, and therefore it 
is with great joy that we all participate in giving fitting 
expression of thanksgiving that in our community this great 
pioneer life did its first and its splendid service for the 
Indian people. I say it is a patriotic service, for of all the 
great names that come down to us — and Massachusetts is sin- 
gularly rich in great names — the name of William Bradford, 
with his genius for government ; the name of Miles Standish, 
the courageous martial character of that time ; the tender 
and pious Elder Brewster ; the sagacious diplomat, Edward 
Winslow ; and John Endicott, who cut the red cross out of 
the flag in the old market place at Salem — all of these are 
revered and splendid names for the school chihhx'n of the 
town and of the Commonwealth to remember. And yet I 
dou1)t if a single name of that early and historiL- coin})any 
will have larger historic carrying power than the name of 
John Eliot, the apostle to the Indians, whose early histoiy 
has made memorable the community in which we abitle. 


When Dean Stanley came to America some one asked him, 
"What are the places that you would like to visit?" The 
Dean replied, " There are two ; one is the place where the 
Pilgrims landed, and the other is the place wliere John Eliot 

I think the historic associations that gather about the 
name of John Eliot are possibly as great and blessed as 
about any of those historic names of the Pilgrim company. 
So that it is a patriotic service that we render to ourselves 
to revivify a little the memory of this man and liis splendid 
service to his kind, for, like the Apostle Paul, he wa,s a 
great missionary pioneer ; and like the Apostle Paul he had 
those traits of self-forgetfulness and service within his heart 
that appeal to the judgments of mankind. The Apostle 
Paul's service was a missionary service, and the service of 
this Puritan -was a missionar}^ service ; and it is a joy to 
remember that the Puritan spiiit had its splendid incarnation 
in a man like John Eliot. I thiid^ we are apt in our 
estimate of the Puritans to give them a certain bigoted figure 
in our minds. St. Gaudens has pictured in stone the 
Puritan of that early time. He stands before you with his 
cocked hat, with his great enveloping Puritan cloak, his knee 
breeches and the buckle upon his shoes. He carries in one 
hand tlie clasped Bible, he carries in the other his staff ; and 
the lines on Ins face are austere, his eye is cold and gray and 
almost cunning. And this was the type that has been very 
largely brought before us in the Puritan character. We 
thought of him as intolerant, as bigoted, possibly as a man 
who thought very much of himself and his own creed. And 
these are probably characterizations that have much truth in 



tliem. Aiul yet in Jnlin Eliot you have tlic iiicarnatioii nf 
the Puritan spirit in a man who hived little children; wlm 
when the .service was long, pulled out of his gi-eat-coat 
pocket sweet apples and cakes for the children and tohacco 
for the men; a man who possibly inauguraiiMJ the initial 
thought of the modern Sunday School in his care fur the 
children of his parish. I have sometimes wished that the 
closing scenes of the old hero's life might be put alongside 
the scene upon the seal of our municipality, which, as you 
know, represents John Eliot standing with his Bible before 
the dusky red men of the forest — I wish it were possible to 
put beside of this another picture, namely, the old gray- 
haired man of eightv-six years teaching a little Indian boy on 
almost the day of his death the a b c of the primer. That 
was the love of the man's heart : and whenever you lind a 
man carrying sweet apples around in his pocket to give to 
children or to give to horses, it is always safe to tie to that 

And not only so, but we have here a Puritan who would 
have loved tlie public school of to-(Iay. We are told tliat he 
was not only one of the founders of Harvard College, but he 
was almost literally the organizer and founder of the Hox- 
bury Latin School, which has achieved a great reputation 
among the schools of this Commonwealth. Moreover, he \v;\s 
a man who for sixty years was pastm' of a historic chnrcli. 
and if you and I were to read the old record, which is still 
kept, and see how he minuted certain items of personal char- 
acter concerning this one and that one and the other, we 
should discover a marvellously tender and friendly and 
fatherly heart in this incarnated Puritan. Jolui Eliot stands 


before us, then, a winsome character — winsome judged as an 
incarnation of that Pilgrim type of character that we kjve to 

But the great service of this man to his time and to all 
time was the service to that race of the trembling eye and 
the wandering foot. There was a time — it does not seem 
possible to us this afternoon — when you went out from the 
door of your cabin and almost at once touched the fringes of 
the savage about you in his forest haunts and homes. And 
I suppose when John Eliot went out from his home in Rox- 
bury for his walks it was not long before he came in contact 
with these denizens of the forest. He saw them ; his great 
compassionate heart went out in sympathy for them. He 
saw what a great many times we do not see, that the Indian 
as he is painted had certain heroic qualities. He lived in a 
world that was peopled with spiritual persons. He con- 
stantly did his homage to some Great Spirit that he pictured 
in the floating clouds or in the face of the rocks or in the 
gnarled and grotesque figures of the forest trees. He loved 
devotedly his children. He was a firm friend ; he was a 
bitter hater. And with all these were other qualities that 
John Eliot saw. He was indolent, wofully so ; he was cruel. 
He liad in liini the inflammable material that, like the grass 
around the frontiersman's cabin, was liable at the touch of a 
spark to carry fire to the prairie and cabin dwellers as well. 
And therefore John Eliot said " The only thing for these 
men is the gospel and the school house." And he went out 
upon that great pioneer mission to give them the gosjiel on 
the one side and the school house on the other. And along 
with it he put the shovel and the hammer and the axe. 


He taught them to make l)ii(]o-('s, to huild lioust-s, to eloar 
their farms, to practice industrial and agricultural aits; and 
he gathered them into community after coinnninity until 
nearly fourteen of them were compassed. 'I'liis man gave 
them practically what we are coming, at a later time, to see 
they must have, namely: citizenship, education, cliristianitv, 
land, laws; and these are coming along the conduit of Ininian 
kindness and christian fellowship. That is the Indian 
question as we stand before it to-da}-, and that is the jtioneer 
solution of the Indian question as it shaped itself in the mind 
of John Eliot two hundred and fifty 3'ears ago. It is marvel- 
lous how we have come back to the pioneer to learn the 
history, of which we need to learn more than we have yet 

But somebody says, "What is the good of it all?" 
There is no one to-day that can read the Bible that John 
Eliot translated into the vernacular of the Algonquins, poss- 
ibly not a man ; nobody can read the catechism or the primer 
or the grammar. Therefore some say, •• ^\ hy and for w hat 
is its value?" We need to remember, my friends, this after- 
noon, that we are standing in the presence of a man who was 
the one who set the step of the regiment in the ^Massachusetts 
Colony to the missionary music to which New England has 
been marching from that day to this — the pioneer, almost, of 
Christian missions upon the continent. That is why we 
turn with a great love toward his character and his life 
and labor. For, after all, it is the inspirational power of 
such living, the heroism of such character that counts for 
more than anything that the hand does, or any l)Ook that the 
mind may create for posterity to read. There was a time 


when Leonidas stood in the pass with his three hundred 
beside him, to ])ush hack the great oceanic current of the 
Persian invasion. There was a time when a flag was fired 
uj)Oii in one of our southern fortresses, and a time in our 
Rebellion histoiy later on, when a gallant soldier pointed to 
the clouds on I^ookout Mountain and asked his men in the 
gray of tiie morning if they could take it. Now in every one 
of these cases there was almost defeat. Leonidas was not able 
to stand against the hosts of Xerxes and he fell, and yet you 
and I know very well that there Avas no name in Greece to 
conjure l)y like tliat of Leonidas and the Three hundred. We 
know also that when the flag at Sumpter was fired upon, and 
left flying over the battered fortress after Anderson marched 
out in capitulation, it became the bugle call to the patiotism 
of the great North to a duty that otherwise save in that 
defeat they had not been nerved to do. And so when Joe 
Hooker sent his men of the grand army on to the heights of 
Lookout Mountain, they found no spoil, they found no 
prisoners of war, they found no camp — all had fled; and yet 
there was hardly a victory in the South that carried such 
tremendous enthusiasm as the possibility of the men in blue 
taking a fortress that was almost covered by the clouds. So 
I say it is the incentive of a great example that pays in this 
world more than the deed we do. It is the enthusiasm of a 
great, heroic character that counts, and that is whj^ we are 
met together this afternoon to i-emember the life and the 
labor of John Eliot. I am glad it comes into the thoughts 
of the school children of this city. I am glad that he stands 
on the seal of oui' municipality; and I trust that the spirit of 
this man, who says it is the duty of the strong to help the 



weak, it is tlie duty of the cultivated lo help the ignorant, it 
is the duty of those who lia\-e the uospcl to give it to the 
man that has it not — that the spirit of John p]liot may long 
live in the schools and the churches of Xonantum, and that 
we may remember, in the words inscribed upon his own 
tombstone, that " Prayer and pains tjan do anything through 
faith in Jesus Christ." (Applause.) 

The High School Chorus sang " Bright Golden Days," 
by Gaul, after which Mayor Cobb said : 

"We shall now have the pleasure of listening to an 
address from our fellow townsman, \)\\ Jolm '\\ Piince of 
West Newton." 


Phillips Brooks once said that the contemplation of the 
life of a great man is attended with feelings both of humilia- 
tion and of encouragement — humiliation, because by com- 
parison we are reminded of the littleness and weakness of 
our work ; and encouragement, because the life contemplated 
is the life of a human being, and therefore as human beings, 
we can follow, in spirit at least, the example that has been 
given us. Such are the feelings that animate us as we come 
together to celebrate an event which marked the beginning 
of the missionary career of John Eliot. 

Our first feeling as we think of the work he accom- 
})lished during the fort3'-four years from the time he first 
stood up to preach in Waban's wigwam, is one of wonder 
and awe. Think of it for a moment! During the continued 
service as elder of the Roxbury Church, with the exacting 
duties of teacher and preacher, he established and helped to 
sustain for many years more than a dozen settlements, while 
he visited with greater or less regularity other communities 
of converted Indians in the Plymouth Colony and in the 
islands near the coast — a region which extended from the 
Merrimack river on tlie north to Providence on the south, 
and from what is now Brookfield on the west to Nantucket 
on the east. In this wide circuit, exposed to all kinds of 
weather, he went on horseback for days at a time, attending 


not only to the .spiritual needs of the people, but to their 
material needs as well, in leading them to improve their 
homes and farms, in helping them to form govennnents of 
their own, in advising them upon questions of order, and in 
assisting them in all possible ways to establish schools for 
their children. He even went so far as to instruct the 
natives in the art of teaching ; or, as he says, " Seeing that 
they must have teachers amongst themselves, they must also 
be taught to be teachers ; for which cause I have begun to 
teach them the art of teaching, and I find some of them very 
capable ; " or, as he says in another place, " How to commu- 
nicate knowledge to others methodically and skilfully." 
The wonder of it all is, how one man, with little personal 
aid from the white settlers, could make these conditions of 
semi-civilization out of conditions of barl)arism but little 
above the lowest forms of savagery. About four thousand 
Indians in all, we are told, fifteen hundred of them being in 
Eliot's villages, were thus raised to an almost self-supporting 
basis as members of Christian communities. 

Thus we see that Eliot's pur[)0se was to raise from 
barbarism a people which would be self-supporting in main- 
taining the four great institutions of civilized life, namely : 
the church, the home, the school, and the state. Other 
missions in other parts of America and in other countries 
have been established, but the principle of self-dependence in 
the maintenance of these great institutions on the part of an 
inferior race has never been more successfully applied than 
was done by this great "apostle to the Indians." How his 
heart would burn with enthusiasm, if he were living, to see 
his o-reat work continued in those noble institutions at 



Hampton and Carlisle and Tuskeegee ; and with what 
genuine pride would he observe the manly conduct of the 
young men of one of these institutions in the inter-collegiate 
games, thus ati'ording an example for others in dignified 
self-control and courteous treatment of opponents. 

The courage and self-sacrifice required on the part of 
the Indians to maintain, even to a partial extent, the institu- 
tions wliich I have named can be fully appreciated only as 
we learn of the open hostility of most of the whites on the 
one hand, and of the jealous hatred had against them by 
their former comj^anions on the other. 

However disappointing the outward results of the new 
settlements may have been during and after King Philip's 
war, the fact remains that under anything like fair circum- 
stances neaily one fourth of the Indian population of New 
England demonstrated their ability to lead orderly, industri- 
ous lives, after the manner of their white neighbors — a fact 
which, for the good of all concerned, too few of Eliot's fellow 
colonists realized. According to the opinions of good judges 
many of the lives of both whites and Indians might have 
been saved, in King Philip's war and afterwards, if only the 
friendship instead of the hostility of tlie christianized natives 
had beien encouraged. With proper treatment these natives 
could have been used as a protection against the common 
enemy. The record of the cruel transfer of a whole commu- 
nity of these ill-judged and mis-used people is scarcely less 
pathetic, in their heroic resignation, than was that of the 
Acadian French eiglity j^ears afterwards. 

Incidental to the g-reat woi-k which Eliot sousrht to 
accomplish, and to a large degree helpful in bringing it 


about, was his work as a writer and translator. Tracts and 
books to the number of more than twenty were issued in 
quick succession. The most memorable of these books — if 
indeed we cannot say the most memorable of all books ever 
written by man — -was that stupendous work, the translation 
of the Hible into a dialect s[)oken by the Massachusetts 
Indians. The greatness of this work can be realized only as 
it is understood that the language into which the translation 
was made was not a written language with regular forms, 
but only a spoken dialect — a jumble of collected sounds 
forming long words, which, as Cotton Mather said, "had 
been growing ever since the confusion of Babel." More 
than this, the words were inadequate to express any thoughts 
or affections above those of a sensual kind. Moral senti- 
ments, much less those of a s[)iritual natui'e, were scarcely 
known to these people, whose speech Eliot had learned but a 
few years before the translation appeared. We can well under- 
stand, therefore, how difficult it must have been for liim to 
express, even in rude form, the spiritual sentiments of the 
Bible narrative ; and yet we have reason to suppose, not only 
that it was understood and enjoyed by those for whom it was 
translated, but that it was a work of great literary merit. 

These two means of evangelization — the work of the 
preacher and pastor and the work of the writer and trans- 
lator — will compare favorably with any similar efforts that 
were ever made. Even the great labors of Wycliff and 
Luther, which naturally suggest themselves in this connec- 
tion, although more wide spread in their effects, were no more 
earnest and really no more effective than were those of John 


In a sense Fallot did not ni;d<e liistorv as (ttlicis Imvi; 
done. He did not make liistoiy t'(ir America as Alfit-d the 
Great made it for England, or as ( 'liarlciiia'^MHj madt; it for 
Germany, or as Casar made it lor Kouie. History in lliese 
cases was made through the conquest of an inferior race hy a 
superior race. Eliot's aim also was to eft'ect a conquest; lait 
it was the conquest of an inferior race, not by a snpi-rior race 
but by themselves. While the heroes of battle were making 
conquests whose end was the securing of land, Eliot was 
showing the way by which self government, both for the 
individual and for the State, could be effected. It may 
have been necessary in the ''march of civilization" to .secure 
the land, even at the dear price which was paid for it, l)Ut it 
was quite as necessary for the sake of humanity that the 
capability of primitive peoples for self improvement should 
be demonstrated; and this John Eliot ditl as no other man, 
before or since his time, has done. 

At first glance it does not seem easy to lind in Eliot's 
life that inspiration and encouragement which we arc t»»ld 
is found in the life of every great man. theie being so few 
conditions of his life common to ours: but as we look deeper 
into his thoughts and motives we find much tiiat we i-an 
appreciate and apply in our own lives. It is interesting 
always to trace out the causes and occasions of great deeds. 
We have no means of knowing when the great purpose of 
Eliot's life took possession of him. It may have Wen when 
he heard that Roger Williams had found refuge from 
the persecutions of the General Court in the home of Ma.ssa- 
soit, and had, with some success, reached the heart.s of the 
Wampanoags; or when the news was told of Tiiomas May- 


hew's earnest work in Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard ; or 
again he miglit have been stirred to j)reach the gospel of 
peace when the news came up to his Roxbury home of the 
horrible massacres of English settlers by the Pequots, and 
the no less horrible retaliatory measures of the English in the 
ainiihilation of the entire tribe. Whether it was one or all 
of these considerations that turned his mind toward the 
elevation of the Indians, or only the natural fulfilment of a 
purpose formed before he came to America, certain it is that 
the decision once formed was faithfully followed. P^'aithful- 
ness to duty in spite of all obstacles is one of the lessons we 
may learn from his life — a lesson which can be applied as 
well to the daily routine of a workman in the shop, a mer- 
chant in the counting room, or a pupil in the school, as to 
teaching and leading the way to heaven. 

If all accounts are true the personality of John Eliot 
was quite unique in the community of Massachusetts Puri- 
tans. "Winsome manners," "facetious affability" are words 
which express the reputed outward bearing of the man ; and, 
if the opinion of his contemporaries is to be credited, he lost 
nothing in casting aside the stern manners of his time. He 
was, we are told, kind and even playful with the Indian 
children, constantly bringing small gifts to them in his rounds. 
This happy manner and cordial friendliness toward all were 
not, we may believe, mere mannerisms or the result of 
inheritance only, but an expression of genuine cheerfulness 
which came from deep spiritual experiences. 

Another element of true greatness characteristic of 
Eliot's life was his genuine human sympathy, especially for 
the weak and oppressed. This was shown by the affection- 


ate hold he had u[)0)i tlic Tmliaiis in his villaj^rs, l>y hiri 
protestations against sending Indian captives int^t shivory, 
by his generous gift of seventy-live acres of lan*l for the 
education of Indians and negroes, hy the pathetic appeal for 
negro servants to be sent to liini for instiuition. aft«'r tin; 
infirraaties of age prevented liini from [HTforniing his reguhir 
duties as pastor, and by his instruction during tlie hist (hiys 
of his life of a poor blind boy of his parish. 

Although the occasions for the same form of ciiarity 
which John Eliot practiced ha[)pily do noi now exist in New 
England, there is the same struggle for life \\ith us all — the 
"life which is more than meat." Happy is the man, woman, 
or child whose faithfulness to duty, sym[)athy for others, and 
humilty of heart at all times will permit him or her to say as 
truly as did John Eliot, "Were I sure to die lo-niorrow I 
would do what I am doing to-day.*" 

" Welcome joy " were almost his last wonls. Can we 
doubt as he said these words that he was thinkin;,^ of the 
promise held out to the faithful? -Well done, goo<l and 
faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things. I 
will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the 
joy of thy Lord.'" 

Mayor Cobb. — We have on the jilatform two chairs 
that belonged to John Elii>t— this one. belonging now to the 
Unitarian Church at Dorchester; and the one behind, which 
I have the pleasure of owning myself. On the eastd in front 
of the stage you will see the photographs of hnildiiigs in 
Nazing and Widford, England, where John Eliot spent his 



We are very much favored in having with us this after- 
noon Dr. Ellsworth Eliot, a lineal descendent of John Eliot, 
who has come from New York to be present on this anniver- 
sary. We should be very glad indeed to hear from Dr. Eliot. 

Dr. Ellsworth Eliot. — Mr. Mayor, ladies and gen- 
men: — I did not come here to say one word, but to listen; 
but I must say I thank the Mayor, the City Council, and the 
citizens of this town, and the school children particularly, for 
the interest which they have shown in the memory of my 
ancestor. As one of his descendants and in the name of his 
descendants, I most heartily thank you. (Applause.) 











The Committee on the 250th Anniversary of the Work of John Kliot at 
Nonantum oflers prizes for the best essays on the follovvin); sul)jccts. 

The competition is open to all pupils in the Newton putilic schools. 

The judges are to be, .Superintendent of .Schools George I. .Mdrich, Mi*s 
Abby H. Bates, and Rev. Francis B. Hornbrooke. 

Subjects : 




Class A. Length, 1,000 words. Open to those from 10 to 14 years of age. 

First prize, S3.C0 Second prize, 52.00. 

Class B. Length, 2,000 words. Open to those from 15 to 20 years of age. 

First prize, $10.00 Second prize, $5.00. 

1. The essays, unfolded, are to be sent to Mr. George I. .-Mdrich, Ncwtonville, 
Mass., to reach him on or before October 31, 1S96, and are to i)c written on one 
side only of ruled paper of size 13)2 inches long by S inches wide, with marginal 
ruling. Each is to be signed by an assumed name, and marked Class .\ or Class 
B and accompanied by a sealed envelope containing the real and assumed name 
of the writer, also age and school. Any of the above subjects may be used by 
competitors in either class. 

2. To each essay is to be added a list of the books used in its preparation. 
The scholarly and exact use of authorities, as indicated in marginal notes, will aid 
in determining excellence. 

3. A free use of books is desired, but aside from that, the essay is to be 
entirely the work of the writer. 

For the committee, 

City Clerk. Chairman. 

PRESENTATION OF I'IMZKS Koi{ IJ.lo'l i:s^\\s. 

Mayor Cobb — Tlie committtH* Imving this iiu'iur»rial 

service in charge, as an incentive to the voting ladies and 

gentlemen of the schools to study the life of Jolin Eliot and 

give some statement of its historic influence, offered prizes 

or essays upon the following subjects: 

"The Life and Work of John Eliot." 

"Eliot at Nonantuni." 

"Newton Before 1700." 

The committee in charge of collecting the e.ssays and 
awarding the prizes will please report. Mr. Aldricli. the 
superintendent of our schools, is the cliainnan of that 

Superintendent Aldrich. — Mr. cliairman hulics. and 
gentlemen: — For the information of any in the audit-ncf 
who may not know the conditions under which thi-se prize 
essays were prepared, I may say that they tall int<» two 
classes. The first class of essays was to he one thousand 
words in length, to be written by young people l)etween the 
ages of ten and fourteen years. The second class of e.s.says 
was somewhat lonofer, two thousand words in leui/th. ami 
was to be written by those varying in age fiom tiftt'en to 
twenty years. The committee charged with the examination 
of these essays have attended to that duty as well as they 
were able, and they have to submit this report : 


In Class A, the first ijrize, in the judgment of the 
committee, is due to a young lady who writes under the pen 
name of "Evelyn Warner," and whose baptismal name we 
find to be Alice Frost. 

In that same class. Class A, the second prize seems be 
due to a girl writing under the name of ''Daisy Wood," 
whose real name we find to be Louise H. De Forest, of the 
Williams School, Auburndale. 

Coming to Class B, the longer essays, the first prize 
seems to be due to some one writing under the pen name of 
''Rose Von Walde," whose real name is Charlotte B. De- 
Forest, of the High School. 

The second prize in Class B is due, in the judgment of 
your committee, to some one who wiites under the pen name 
of "Sixteen to One," and, on opening the envelope attached 
to that essay, we find the name of Ernest R. Lowe, a mem- 
ber of Miss Spear's school at Newton. 

I will ask these four young people, or so many of them 
as ma}^ be in attendance, to make their way to the platform, 
and receive from the hands of the Mayor the prizes which 
they have worthily won. 

Mayor Cobb. — How many essays were sent in? 

Superintendent Aldrich. — I can state the number 
only approximately. In Class A, seven or eight; and in 
Class B, between twenty and thirty. 

Miss Charlotte B. DeForest, the winner of the first prize 
in class B, and the only one of the prize winners who was 
present, came forward to the platform. 

Mayor Cobb. — Owing to a recent general and quite 
thorough public discussion, which resulted in an event, 


greatly rejoiced over, the tomiiiittec is jihlc to ;i\v;uil tliuse 
prizes in gold. (Applause.) I sent a young imin fiuni iiiv 
office out to get the gokl, and when he retunuMl with it he 
asked me, "-What are you going to do with tliosc McKinh-v 
buttons? (Laughter.) I liave great pleasure in prj'senting 
Miss DeForef^t the first pri/.r in Class li. a >:ln goM piet-e. 
(Applause.) As Miss DeForest's sister is not present. I will 
present to her, to be carried to her sister, the secM»nd prize in 
Class A, a $2.50 gold piece (Applause). Other prizes 
awarded to those who are not present will be duly lorwarded 
to them. 

After the rendering of Eiehherg's -'^'V^^ Thee. ( )h roim- 
try," Mayor Cobb said : 

"•The closing' address will be tjriven bv tin- Kev. Mr. 
MeDaniel of Xewton Centre, whom I now have the pleasure 
of introdueinor/' 

ADDRESS OF liEW liKN.IA M I N !■ . .M.|).\MI:L, 


One of the aims proposed in tlic fomiiliiiL,' nf tlir .M;iss;i- 
chusetts Bay Colony was tlie convfisidii of [\\v nativt-s to tlit- 
Christian religion: bnt as the cijlonists were sorr beset with 
difficulties and hardships that severely taxed tlieir resources, 
some years elapsed before that pious purpose could be 

What impressed men like the Mayhews, IJoger Williams 
and John Eliot, along with the moral poverty and spiritual 
destitution of the Indians, was their uttei- helplessness to 
cope with the elements and forces of nature, to ward otT 
disease, and to gain even a low degree of comfort in the 
European scale of living. 

These noble Christian philanthropists saw that preaehing 
the gospel to people of such a low order of intelligenee nmst 
yield imperfect and erroneous results unless it were accom- 
panied by education covering the whole range of civilization. 
Note the striking difference between this view and that 
adopted by the Spaniards. 

John Eliot was the fouiuler in America of th<- tru.- 
Indian policy, too soon abandoned, and for over two centuries 
shamefully disregarded by the American i)eoi)le. Uidike tin- 
Spaniards, he began by making friends of a people it was 
easy under the circumstances to convert into foes. The 


burden of responsibility to keep them friends lay upon the 

Almost passively the natives yielded possession of the 
soil. With childlike simplicity they bowed before the supe- 
rior powers of the whites, and eagerly embraced the scant 
opportunities afforded them to gain these powers for them- 

Eliot saw that it would be innnensely to the advantage 
of the colonists to have the Indians settled in stable commu- 
nities: at the same time it would ensure the success of his 
own efforts to Christianize them. This meant houses and 
lands, gardens and orchards, scliools and churches of their 
own creation. It meant civilization as well as religion. 

For religion he had the foundation laid by God in their 
own nature; and with masterly wisdom lie began by appeal- 
ing to the religious instincts of their hearts, telling them 
like another Paul at Athens, that the God they worshiped in 
ignorance was the Heavenly Father revealed in the glorious 
light of the gospel of Jesus Clirist. 

For civilization there was no foundation, save in the 
docility and eagerness of their untutored, inexperienced 

So he began by showing them how to build stone walls, 
to frame houses, to dig trenches, to sink wells, to sow seed, 
to plant trees, to open up roads, to do the thousand things 
that mark off the civilized man from the savage. 

There may be good grounds for believing that the stone 
walls, road-ways, and foundations discovered on the banks of 
the Charles river, near Watertown, and attributed to the 
Norsemen, are the remains of the homes of some of these 


praying Indians of Nonantum, whose cliirt" (><<ii|iiitinii \\;i> 
fishing at the \ari(ins falls on llie river. Siieli reinains nf 
these Indians were to lie sei-n in lliis vieinil\ down to ii 
recent period. 

Here in John lOliol was e\idenee of sterlini;- good sense, 
of the highest practical wisdom, applii-il at the vei'\ point 
and time w heiv they were most nee(led. Here was an 
exani[)le. the l)are practical ntility of wliidi slmnld have 
commended itself to tlie coh)nists as liie rnle of action in all 
their dealings with the natives. 

'••llis favorite [irojeet," we are told, "was to luing them 
together in well-oich-ieil towns, where employments in the 
several arts and trades, and general impiovement in civil 
affairs, might advance harid in Irand with religions instruc- 
tion." In the feeble condition of the Hay colonists at that 
time, this could not be accomplished without geiu'rous aid 
from Eno-land : and in the unsettled state of political afTairs 
there, it was easier to get complimenliiry and pioirs resolu- 
tions from Parliament than to raise the necessai-y money for 
such a work. 

Private benevolence at last came to Eliot's assistanci-, 
and after years of hope deferred, the Natick comniunity was 

It seemed to him that the settlement here at Nonantum 
was too near Boston and Cambridge to permit jieifcct treedom 
in working out the peculiar conditions of his experinuMit. It 
was to be socially and politically, as well as religiously, as 
near a republic as the circumstances would justify. 

The Indians here at Nonantum. as at Neponset, Concord, 
Groton, and elsewhere in Kliot"s past(.ral lare. were stdl m 


the tribal state, and preferred their wigwam life. He hoped 
that at Natick they would be led to build a town after the 
Eno-lish manner — a town, as he wrote to Edward Winslow, 
who was })usliing his cause in England, "that should be a 
model for all snl)se(|uent communities of Chiistian Indians 
that should he gathered together." He made the Indians to 
see that in their irregular, unsettled mode of life they could 
not maintain Christian institutions, much less cultivate the 
domestic and civic arts and virtues that must go with the 
Christian religion to keep it strong and pure. Hence the 
proposed settlement came to be as much an object of pi'ayer 
with them as witli him. "O that God would let us live to 
see that day! " they fervently cried. 

It was the fashion in certain circles here and in England, 
especially after the Restoration, to sneer at Eliot's labors, 
and the wits of the time were quick to seize the strange and 
grotesque features of the enterpiise ; but he could point with 
equal modesty and assurance to tlie hundreds of natives 
transformed, at least in part, from savage to civilized life, 
reaching even to the bachelors degree from Harvard 

But the noble missionary's Utopia was soon rudely 
broken up. King Philip's war — shall we call it a blunder or 
a crime? — enveloped the colony like a tempest, and swept 
the little community to an almost hopeless ruin. The great 
heart of the teacher was well-nigh bi-oken ; but here his 
greatness as a true shepherd, a saint, and a hero appeared. 
To his own injury, but never to his shame, he stood between 
tlie innocent, defenceless Indians of his charge and the blind, 
undiscriminating fury of the people. At his own cost and 


to the peril of liealtli and lift- lie iniiiisten'd to the wretched 
exiles. He shielded them as fur as \\v vu\M fmin llic cm-sr 
of slavery, and hravely rcl.iikcd tin; aiitlioriti.-s for srlljn^r th.- 
Indians into bondage. 

By that act alone, they discn-dited tlicnisflvi-s in tht- 
eyes of the Indians. By this inliumanity. and l.arharities 
excusable only in savages, Eliot's work was crippliMl, and 
the way blocked to its extension. His niissionarv j»ost.s 
were reduced from seventeen to four; and onlv one tin- 
revived Indian town at Natick, retained the characteris- 
tics he had hoped to give to an ever-enlarging cirilc of sueli 

That also lost its charaetei- nnder Knglish swa\. and 
Eliot died without tlie sight of the success he so ricidv 
deserved. I do not forget that tlie completion and publica- 
tion of his Indian Bible and Psalm Book, in whic-h he was 
aided by one of his native converts, were rewards of labor, 
patience, and courage that must have cheered him. even in 
the darkest liours ; but these works were, with him. oidy the 
spiritual implements for tilling the soil so provi(h-ntially 
spread before him. These literary works of his were of 
limited range ; but the principle he established, tliat the 
natives should be won to the Clu-istian faitli by Christian 
treatment and the means of tlie most advanced civilization, 
the Nation has not yet fully lived up t(^. 

John Eliot passed away, and with him some of the intln- 
ences he set in motion. The Indians died oni, or retired 
before the resistless march of the whites. The Christian 
republic of the red men was no longer the vision or labor of 
any courageous, pious soul. 


But out of that dim aud troubled time the noble fio-ure 
of .lohii I^^liot stands out, relieving much that was dark, 
l)arbari(', unchristian. We see him again walking over these 
hills and tlu'ough these valleys, which he named Nonantum, 
tliat is, liejoicimi, bearing to the dusky sons of the forest the 
means of civilization and the light of Christian faith, reveal- 
ing to them a visil)le gosi)el in his own sweet, gentle nature 
and loving, spotless charactei'. 

We do well to hon(n' him in these commemorative 
exercises ; but they will be an empty strain of idle praise 
unless coupled with an earnest purpose to redeem the mis- 
takes and crimes of the i)ast in our dealings with the Indians, 
and to bring them once more and forever into relations of 
peace and fellowship with all our people. 

Mayor Cobb.-— Tn behalf of the City Committee I wish 
to thank the scholars of the schools for their p-enerous 
response to our call for essays. I Avill say that probably 
to-night there will be placed in the hands of the City a 
fund which will enable us every year to offer prizes to the 
children of our schools for essaj^s upon colonial history and 
matters pertaining to the early days. I wish that we had 
prizes to give to all who have written to-day; but, children, 
you will have your reward. As you study in ancient history 
of the cruelty, the rapacity, the selfishness of the Hannibals 
and the Csesars, and the Napoleons, you will have in beauti- 
ful contrast this loving life given for humanity and -God — 


this lite tliat is j^loriticd now in tlir IJiiIcciium's kiii>^n|niii. 

We will now lisc iiiid siiiLf two verses df •• Aiiiei ira." 
and close with the l)o.\<ilo<ry. 

The audience joined in sinyiiit^- ilie lirst two staii/.as nf 
'» Amei'ica," followed by the Doxology, •• Praise (Joil. from 
Whom all blessings flow,"' which concluded tlie exercises. 

Wednesday, November 11. IslX), 

KVFAixc i:xi:i:(isi:s. 

The commemorative exercises Wednesday eveninfj were held at Eliot Church, 
in Newton, in the presence of a large audience. After the organ voluntary Mayor 
Cobb opened the exercises in the following words: 


Friends and Fdloiv Citizens: 

The City of Newton lias invited you to asNcinlili- liei*- 
this evening in loving memorial of tin- lift- ami ..f (»ur 
patron saint, the apostle .lolm Kliot. 

When the fonnders of nur municipality were called 
upon to choose an emljlem for uur City seal, tliei-e wjvs one 
scene in our earliest histoi'v which at once sufriri'>^te<l itself as 
pre-eminently ap[)ropriate. 

They saw these hills and vallcvs. ('(tvered with the 
primeval forest; and under the wide spreading hrantdics of 
a grand old oak on the eastern slope of the hill. Nonantuni. 
stood a white man in clerical dress, his face lighted uji with 
the love of the Master, anrl crowding ahout him. a hand t>f 
dusky Indians, listening intently while he strove to impart 
to them the words of eternal truth — and that is the picture 
which adorns every official document of the City of Newton, 
embalmino- for all jjenerations the sweet memories ot a nohle 


Thus did he proclaim the universal brotherhood of man. 
When Fr. Gabriel Druilette, a Jesuit priest and missionary 
to the Northwest Indians, came on a pilgrimage to New 
England, he was welcomed by Eliot to his heart and home, 
and was urged to spend the winter with him. Mark the 
scene, and learn in this conference of these devoted servants 
of God — widely separated by creed and method, but united 
in faithful endeavor for the uplifting of their fellows — a 
grand lesson of religious toleration ; and further, may this 
self-sacrificing life remind us of our individual responsibility 
as integral parts of the body politic. 

iM{AVi:i{ p>v ui:\'. i:i)\v.\iii) .\i. novks. 


Oh, Lord, riidU liast ht-cii (Mir dw cUiiii^f phifL' in ;ill 
generations. Wt* have licaid with our cars. () (iud. uur 
fathers have tohl us, what work Thou didst in thfii- tlays. in 
the days of old; how 'I'hou didst drive out the nations witli 
Thy hand and [)hintedst them. We thank Thee that Th(tu 
didst guide our fathers by Thy s[)irit to tlie i'oundini,' ot" wise 
institutions, tlie appointing of just hrws, the estahlisluufnt 
of righteousness in this new huid. We thank Tliet- for 
their pious example, for their faith unt'eiLT'ied. 'I'hou hast 
increased greatly Thy people : Thou hast made the w 
a city; so we, Thy people and tlie sheej) of Thy pasture, will 
give Thee thanks forever; we will show forth Thy praise 
unto all generations. 

Especially do we jn-aise Thee to-nioht hir the work of 
Thy servant whose name is i4)on all our lips in honor and 
reverence, and whose memory is sweet within our hearts. 
We thank Thee that Thou ditlst jiut 'Ihy s[tirit upon him: 
that Thou didst anoint him lo preach the gospel unto the 
poor; to preach unto the captives of sin. drliveianee : to lieal 
the broken-hearted; to proclaim the aceeptable year of the 
Lord. We thank Thee for all the immediate fruitage (.f his 
labor, for all the inspiration of his exami»le entering into 
other lives with fruitful power. We thank Thee for his 


patience, foi' liis toil, for his self-sacrifice, and for his fidelity 
even unto death. 

And now we pray Thee that as we are gathered here 
to-night to do honor unto his memory, that some baptism of 
his own spirit may be given unto us in Thy grace. We pray 
Thee that this nation in our day may be just and wise in its 
treatment of the remnants of that race for which he gave his 
life. We pray Thee that this city, whose homes now adorn 
the fields where once he preached the everlasting gosi)el — 
this city which hath set upon its seal the enduring memorial 
of his fidelity — may have impressed upon every portion of 
its civil, domestic, and social life, that vital Christianity, that 
reverence for Thee and for Thy law, and that unfeigned love 
for our fellow-men which were the guiding principles of his 
life. And wilt Thou bless unto us as individuals all the 
exercises of this liour? May we be so instructed and so 
inspired that we, who are the inheritors of the past, and who 
have entered into the fruits of the laborers of the past, may 
enter also into a like fidelity with Thee ; that we also, having 
served our day and generation, may be faithful unto death, 
and inherit wnth them the crown of eternal life. And all we 
ask in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen. 

The Eliot Church Choir, under direction of Mr. William 
H. Dunham, rendered "How Lovely are the Messengers," 
from Mendelssohn's "St. Paul." 

Mayor Cobb. — Fellow citizens, T have the great pleas- 
ure and privilege of introducing to you as the orator of the 
evening, the Honorable William Everett. C Applause). 



()i:.\ rioN. 

The commeinoiatiDii in wliidi we arc cii^fat^nMl to-iii^'lit 
is unique in tlic liistoiy of Nt*\v En<rlan(l towns. Tlir 
anniversaries which have been cch'hnited in (»nr nri^^'hhm- 
hoocl during many years, as one town after another rt'calls 
that it is two hundred or two hundn-d and lifty yeai-s old, 
tell all pretty nundi the same story how a ]tart i>f the 
inhabitants of one and another town fonnd that they had ton 
far to go to their house of meetings, religious or seculai-. and 
that it was their duty to have their own pastor, tlicii- own 
parish, their own precinct, and, lastly, tlnir own town. 
Every one of these new swarms might develop in after time 
its own [teculiar treasure of honey, wax. glue, or poison : but 
the swarming process was much tlie same in all c;ises. 

But Nonantum has a glory exclusively lier own. and one 
of which no town in the United States will easily deprive 
her. It w^as here, on the 28th of October, ItM*), that John 
Eliot took up a work which no man had suggested to him. 
but the living s[)int of (iod only: and wliieh. promising 
nothing in the way of worldly emolument, little even of 
what men call success, has crowned him with a wreatii of 

" With peerless glories bright 
That shall new lustre boast 
\Vhen victors' wreaths and luonarchs' gems 
Shall blend in common dust." 


Tlie .story of John Eliot, his life and work, has been 
often told : and, in these last years, re-told with every 
circumstance that old tiudition or late research could com- 
bine. In this veiy month the New England Magazine has 
brightened its pages by a most thorough and interesting 
picture of all that is known about him, from the pen of his 
successor at Roxbury. \ov\ all know the story here, and 
could recapitulate its every detail to me far l)etter than I 
could tell it to you. His l)irth, whether at Nazing in Essex, 
where much of his youth was })assed, or in the neighboring 
parish of Widford in Ilei'tfoidshire, where cei'tainly he was 
baptized, and where a splendid memorial window has recently 
been dedicated to his memory by the ])iety and generosity of 
his descendants, acting through the venerable Di-. EUswoith 
Eliot of New York ; his training in a leligious home, where 
the fear of God was as its very atmosphere ; his education 
at .Tesus College in Cambiidge, in some respects the most 
attractive of all the foundations in that home of learning; 
his service as a school-master at J^ittle Haddow, under the 
Olympian presence of Thomas Hooker ; his migration to 
New England in the Lion ; his temporary supply of the First 
C'hurch, and his call to Roxbury to su[)ply the demands of 
the Nazing Christians, who had tliemselves crossed the ocean 
in a body for the express purpose of obtaining his ministra- 
tions ; his marriage and ordination, each a door opening to 
long 3^ears of happiness as a husband and a pastor ; his 
saintly service in the (duii-ch, always working for love and 
never for strife; his peaceful death, in extreme old age — 
these things have been plainly set forth in detail for all to 
read who care for the history of New England and the men 
who made her. 



Then, in tin- midst of this ti;iiii|iiii ministry, arisi'S the 
new life of the apostle to tht- Indians. 'I'lic cailv atttMnpts 
of Eliot to aeqnire the langMatrf ; the liist visit to this spot 
on tlie :^8th ol Octoher, lli4t!, and the fust assmihlv in 
Wahan's wigwam: tiie first prayei' and tin- lii-st sermon from 
tliat marvellons spiritual \isionof l'>,(d<irl ; tlir si-cimil \ isit, 
exactly two hundred and lifty yeai-s ago this <la\ : tin; discus- 
sion of multifarious (jucstions. hard or easy, hut every one 
met honestly and patientl}' ; the sniwecpient meetings, the 
devotion by Waban of his sons to Chiistian education ; the 
beginnings of cnlture and cix ili/.ation : the establishment of 
church and t(»wn at Natick : the struggle with the wayward 
sachem of Ne})onset; the visit to l'assaconawa\, the son-erer, 
at Pawtuclvet Falls: the long and patient struggle with 
enemies, Christian and Indian alike: the eager calls on the 
friends of religion beyond the sea; the correspondence witii 
the saintly philosopher, Robert Boyle ; the tirst attemj)ts at 
religions literature in the Mohegan language, culminating in 
that stupendous work, the translation of the whole I5ihle, in 
two editions; the thunderbolt of the war with Philip, where 
the praying Indians found themselves literally hetween two 
fires; their sad transportation to Deer Island, the very 
name of which we cannot pronounce without a grim sense of 
mingled comedy and crime ; the late and feeble return : the 
entire forty years, whether in success or failure, n)arked l>y 
the courage, the fervor, the industry, the [)atience, the saintly 
tenderness of Eliot — you all know the story; you have heartl 
it, you have read it, you have studied it, you have pondered 
it. Surelv you have not come here tt)-night like little 
children, to have the tale repeated, and watch me critically 


for fear I should leave out some incident ; but i-atlier, may 1 
not think, accepting the tale as told, you will be content to 
liave me lead your minds to some just reflections on the man 
and his work, to consider why after two centuries and a half 
we have learned to trace his story with such loving accuivacy. 
I feel, for more causes tlian one, a very dee}) interest in 
the careei- of this holy man In tlie first place, he l^elonged 
to that glorious University of Cambridge, of which I am 
proud of being a graduate. It is incredible to me that, 
considei'ing how mucli Massachusetts owes to Cambridge 
University, considering that Winthrop and Cotton, and a 
score of her other founders were Cambridge men. considering 
that John Harvard was a Cambridge man, and tliat the first 
two })residents of his cf)llege were Cambridge gra<l nates, it is 
incredible to me, I say, that our generation in Massachusetts 
should be always talking about Oxford, as if that were the 
only university in England. I Avas asked within three weeks 
by a very old and honored friend, a man who expected me to 
vote for him in the late election, if I was not an Oxford 
man. Ask a Harvard man if he was at Yale, ask a Williams 
man if he was at Amherst, ask a Columbia, man if he was at 
Union, ask a Princeton man if he was at Rutgers, but don't 
ask a Cambridge man if he was at Oxford ; and don't, when 
you come back from visiting England, tell how you went to 
Oxford, and had no time to go to Caml)ridge — the university 
of Spenser and Bacon and Cromwell and Milton and 
Newton ; the university of the eastern counties, of the 
reformers, of the Puritans, of free thought and free speech ; 
the university that made New England what she was, the 
Cambridge but for which your own name of Newtowne might 



still be clinging^ to soiiu; luirkvaid iM'twcni Mrdtonl ami 
Brookline, aiid tlu' site of Ilarvarir.s halls W (xtt-upicrl l.v the 

alxiiiiinatioiis of ii factorw 

A^aiii, I must feel a personal iiitfirst in .Inhn Kliot 
from his having exereised, aft(;r Iciving (•(dlfir,.. mv own 
profession of a school master. Cotton Mather, in his "Life 
of I'^liol.'" lahors hard to clcai' this cdlinLf fnun a ft-rtain 
imputation of iiifeiiority. Ami. indiM^l. in l^liot's tinn-. a 
teacher of boys — for skirls h id scarcely any education was 
distinctly looked down upon. lie had neither the h tnorahle 
deference accorded to a learned pi'ofession, nor the honest 
respect attached to a ineclianie ait. lie \\:is in veiv trnth a 
pedagogue — that vile word, from which is <lcri vcd the still 
viler ^'piedagogy," bv whii-Ji people pel•si^t in miscallin^,^ the 
noble art of education, of which tlu; pinper (ireek name is 
"peedeutics," a pedagogue being uierely the slave who takes 
a boy to school, and sees that he does not play truant oi- 

Things have somewhat changed in this respect with us. 
When 1 liad the honor of a seat in the Fifty-third Cougre.s.s, 
one tenth of all the senators an<l icpresentatives jnit them- 
selves on record <is having taught .school: and 1 know that 
some had done so who did not record it. In fact, an occu- 
pation which Daniel Webster and Andrew .Iack>on both 
adopted needs no forced exaltation in American eyes. It is 
the hardest and most tliankless of callings. The .school- 
master is exposed at once to the tire of bnir armies — Ids 
pupils, their parents, the committee, and the public. He is 
expected to take a keen interest in the wilftd and stupid. 
and vet submit to see his best pupils removed from under his 


care without being consulted ; lie is forced to teach what lie 
does not believe, and have his poorly-j^aid place the prey of 
politics; he is exj^ected to make bricks without straw, and 
cut blocks with a razor; and, worst of all, he is expected in 
his hai-d-earned vacations to go to conventions and hear his 
businc^ss discussed by people who know less about it than he 
does. All the more ought all of our craft to pay their respect- 
ful thanks to the memory of John Eliot, who was active in 
founding that noble institution, the Roxbury Latin School, 
the best school to-day in New England, especially in its noble 
regard alike for its teachers and its pupils. 

With these two personal sources of interest over and 
above what the whole nation and the whole church must feel 
in Eliot, I approach the sidjject of his place in history — the 
niche he must fill in our hall of worthies. 

It seems to me that John Eliot exhibits to us a striking 
instance of one of the noblest types of human greatness — the 
men who are at once in line with their age, and yet 
ahead of it. He was in one sense the man of his age ; he 
lived and died in the energetic and successful discharge of 
what his age and land considered the highest of occupations, 
the priesthood and ministry of God, according to the strictest 
rule of sanctity and the widest law of charity, and yet not 
so entirely under the yoke of his time that he would not 
have been considered a saintly pastor in any age and any 
place. If Eliot had never preached to the Indians, lie would 
have received the best praise of his contemporaries and 
secured a place of love and honor in later days with Higgin- 
son and Phillips, with Cotton and Shepard, with Bradford 
and Winthrop. 



III lliis position he ft-lt stiirin^r in his Itrcast the 
inij)ulse to a woik liardci-. liiLrlit-r. liolifi- still; a MuodlcHH 
crusade as iniicli Iteyond tlic ordinarv, nay. tin- cxcciitional 
demands of a New Encrland pastorale, as tin- expiMlition of 
Coitez was beyond the most gallant deeds of (icjnsiilvo de 

In this enterprise he had. of course to encountrr all the 
sloth, the craft, the greed, the fierceness of the age ; but even 
from its energy, its courage, its generosity, its tenderness, he 
met with dread of his difficulties and doubts of his success. 
Undeteired by any obstacle, what his heart had conceived, 
his mind elaborated, and his liand executed. lie succeeded 
beyond the utmost measure of success that could have Ih-cii 
anticipated ; he failed because he was not superhuman ; 
because liis work stood like a barrier between the evil jias- 
sions, both of his own kind and the aliens he sought to 
benefit. But he left, even in failure, the first true example 
of how his work ought to be done, which every one that has 
tried to take it in later times must follow. 

There have been great men. there were great men in 
Eliot's time, so completely the children of their own age that 
it was impossible to rise beyond it, even in their loftier 
moments. There have been other great men. there were 
such in Eliot's time, whose greatness was all in vision, and 
who drew from their own age little but a share in its faults, 
or a failure to see its virtues. The learning and courage of 
Coke, the art and genius of Milton both seemed to need 
apologies, because the one did too mucii and the other t4TO 
little for his age. Eliot, like Pascal, was one of those who 
work both for time and for eternity, an illustraii«»n of the 


"Teat natural law that whatever is the best of its own .species 
is the stock of a ncAV one. 

I desire to consider Eliot's work in both these relations, 
not merely as the great apostle to the Indians, but primarily 
as the minister of Roxbury ; and this for many reasons. 

It was out of Eliot's [)astorate, his ministry, his seivice 
as an ordained teacher of the gospel, that his mission to the 
Indians grew. It could hardly have been otherwise with 
any man in that age ; it could by no possibility have been 
otherwise with him. He had taken upon himself the work 
of a pastor and a teacher because his own nature was adapted 
to it, his training encouraged it, the age regai'ded it as the 
holiest and noblest of professions. His views of chuich 
doctrine and church government drew him to New Eng- 
land ; his own neighbors followed him for the expi'ess 
purpose of having him for their shepherd. Once established 
in this calling, he had no choice but to perform its duties to 
the full, whatever they might be ; he read in his Master's 
word the direct precept to go forth into the world and 
preach llie gospel to every creature ; he found liimself the 
neighbor of a whole race of men to whom the gospel never 
had been preached, and whom he believed to be shut out 
from all he thought worth having in this world and the 
next ; and the conclusion followed in Ins mind as the night 
the day. It was because he was a pastor and teacher that he 
became an apostle, a prophet, and an evangelist. Tlie work 
which Eliot started in New England could no more have 
■been done by anybody but a minister of the gospel, than the 
work of Miles Standish and Benjamin Church could have 
been done by any but a soldier. 


Moreover, it is essential In iiutt- thai ii was In- tlii.' work 
of the New Kiiglaml clergy, and l-^lint as diic of their most 
prominent members — the oiil' who siiivivt-<l all his conl«'Mi- 
porary pastors, and must liaxc hccn invfstfd l)y such im-n as 
Increase Mather, whom he had known in his cradk', witli 
patriarclial authority — that Xi-w England grew to what she 
is. It used to be the connnonplace of history thai Massa- 
chusetts Bay was a settlement of ('hristian-, a fudeiation of 
churches under Christian pastors. Among the strange mod- 
ern attempts to re-Avrite history directly in the teeth of 
contempoiary evidence, one of the most singular. a-< it seems 
to me, is the plan of dissociating our civil insiiiutions. our 
freedom, our enterprise, our education, fro.n the religi<ius 
sentiment and the clerical leadership, winch, in fart, were 
the very nerves and brain of the settlement. 'Ihe notion that 
our colony started as a commercial enterprise, and the notion 
that it grew^ by the inevitable elllux of a eiowdeil and 
dissatisfied people, are true enough, [)rovided we remember 
that the same causes operating all over the (M>ntinent, and 
one might say all over the world, but without the stimulus 
of religious feeling, religious brotherhood, religious loyalty, 
gave birth to colonies as feeble and nervele-ss in comparison 
with Massachusetts and C'onneetieut a-; a buckeye in eom- 
parison with an oak. It stands indelibly on every page of 
the history of England, in the century of which the founding 
of New England is the central point, that the Puritans, in 
theology and church government, were the foundei-s of wn- 
stitutional liberty ; and the same is true in the sister States 
of Holland. To endeavor to separate the work of Massachu- 
setts in government from her work in religion, to say that 


John Wiiitlirop deserves praise wliile John Cotton deserves 
censure, is a good deal like praising the taste of a hickory 
nut and objecting to its tough bark. 

The New England ministers were in every sense the 
representatives of the people. They were chosen by them 
out of their own body as leaders, advisors, and friends. 
They were trusted, honored, loved; but they never formed a 
priestly caste, set off from the people as not entirely belong- 
ing to them. However highly regarded their service, they 
were held strictly amenable to the will of the civil power 
whenever their actions seemed to threaten the stability of 
the Commonwealth. There can be no better instance of this 
than is afforded by Eliot liimself. In 1634, when Eliot was 
a young minister, the magistrates ha,d made a treaty with the 
Pequot Indians, after consultation with the clergy, then a 
very small and very remarkable body. The youthful minis- 
ter introduced in his next sermon some strictures on their 
conduct, declaring the magistrates had no riglit to frame 
such a treaty without consulting the community. It seemed, 
as such preaching would now, an unwise criticism of those 
in authority. A committee of his clerical brethren, including 
Hooker, his spiritual master, were appointed to "deal" with 
Eliot; and he acknowledged that, since the treaty was one 
for peace and not for war, the magistrates had exercised a 
wise discretion, and gave utterance to this view in his next 

There cannot be better testimony to the good sense of 
our ancestors, and the noble nature of Eliot, who could see 
when he had been wrong, and could say so, making the 
distinction wliich every one here ought to consider eternally 



true: Von may critiuisc tlic cliicf iii;iL;is(i-atf if liis arts UmuI 
to \vai\ hut not if tlit'v lead to |ic;nf: llir ('luistian rule of 
allegiance, as opposed to tjit- salanic maxiin : ••( )ui- luiint i\-. 
risflit or wront"-." 

It was not the only time Kliot hail to retract his pciliti- 
cal utterances. In the da^^s of Cromwcirs greatest lriiimph> 
Eliot had written a treatise called •• The C'hiistian Common- 
wealth," in which, it seems, he had taken the very extreme 
ground that the ancient English Government of king, loids, 
and commons was unchristian. The manuscript had heen 
sent to England, and there puhlished, tliough apparently not 
at Eliot's instance. A copy of it arrived in New {•jiL,dand 
not long after the restoration of Charles II — nine years after 
Eliot had written it — and naturally caused much commotion 
among the colonists, who were trembling for the stability of 
their charter, considering how out-spoken had heen their 
sympathy with Cromwell's government. Eliot was called 
upon to retract some of its l)older utterances; and he found 
little difficulty in doing so. for whatever might he his j. refer- 
ence for republican institutions, to dechire that the govern- 
ment under which England had been ruled for four centuries 
\vas unchristian, was beyond all but a few thet)rists. 

Hutchinson has seen fit to sneer at Eliot for this as a 
time-serving action. If Hutchinson had ever brought him- 
self to conceive the possibility of his being wrong, and saying 
so, he might have saved himself, his country, and his king 
no little suffering. We are all of us apt to accuse people of 
clinging obstinately to their own opinions, and yet when a 
great and good man does retract we are e(pially apt to accuse 
him of cowardice. But let us notice that the Conimou 


wealth only dealt out to Eliot the same measure that it did 
to its most valued civil servants. Our histories have a good 
deal to say about Eudicott's ripping St. George's cross out of 
the flag. They generally omit to recoid that tlie General 
Court censured this act as lash, uncharitable, and unwar- 
ranted, and punished the doughty captain by exclusion from 
office for a year; nor was he re-instated except on the most 
humble submission. Clergymen and laymen alike felt that 
stern justice should be administered and order preserved in 
the very home of freedom, as our own poet, too early lost, 
sings : 

O Law, thou shield of liberty, God's light is on thy brow; 
O Liberty, thou hfe of law, God's very self art thou. 
O daughter of the bleeding past, O hope the prophets saw; 
God give us law in liberty, and liberty in law. 

The New England clergy are often clarged with being- 
hard and stern — schooled out of the tenderer emotions. 
However true this may be of some of his contem})oraries, it 
certainly was not true of Eliot, whose life was one of over- 
flowing sweetness and charity, forbearing and forgiving by 
precept and example. The man in whose pockets the Indian 
pappooses used to search, not in vain, for aj)ples or cakes, 
could not have had the milk of human kindness seriously 
soured by Calvinistic theology ; the man who welcomed 
the Jesuit priest to bed and board and opened to him all his 
dealings with the sons of the forest, so different from his 
own, can never be accused of narrowness or bigotry. 

For one duty which he conceived imposed upon him by 
his ministerial office, Eliot was certainh' most unfit. When 
he engaged witli his colleagues in turning the Psalms of 
David into rhymed verses to be sung, he went beyond the 


utmost of liis powers. '|"|ic hoprlrssly iiii|MM-tic;il .liiinicUT 
of tlic \\\\\ I'saliii |',i)()l< was criticised at tin- tiim. in lines 
Mliicli have l)eeii quoted to weariness, and aie (|uite ;is 
li]n[)iiio- as any that tliey eensnie. Tlie fault lay laiLjelv in 
the excess of reverence for the suhject. Sli<»rilv after Kliot 
began preaching, Jolm Milton attempted to timi nine of tlic 
Psalms into English verse, adlieiing as closely as [tossihle to 
the original ; and the result is as har.^h and dry as anything 
in Eliot's Psalm Book. But the poetical faculty which the 
Lord denied to the apostle He reserved for those who spiang 
from liis loins, and America lias liad few sons niore woithv 
of the poet's laurel than the descendant of .lohn I-lliui. |-*it/.- 
Greene Halleck, tlic sweet singer of Maico lin/./aiis. 

If ever God's blessing descended on a ininistei of (hiist. 
it did on John Eliot. Some have vexed themselves in our day 
with the (piestioii whether he received iioly or(h'r,s in I'.ng- 
land from the hands of any bishop: and some have l>een 
disposed, because this cannot be proved, to withlmld fmni 
him tlie name of an ordained minister. I am ready to main- 
tain that Eliot's ordination by a council of ministers, every 
one of them Episcopally ordained, if that is of any ace(»iint. 
is as valid as if he had passed under the liands of Laud him- 
self. But he was ordained by the spirit of (io<l: he was 
ordained by the death of His Son. .lesns Christ. if 
Eliot was not ordained, St. Augustine wa> nut ordained: St. 
Ignatius was not ordained; St. Paul was imt ordained: St. 
John himself was not ordained to the work of i)reaching the 
gospel to every creature. 

And now to consider tlic (piestioii wiiich yuu wdl 
naturally feel I have postponed too long, Eliot's work tor 


the Indians. There are some traits in it on the surface which 
attract every one : the absolute self-sacrifice which caused 
him to add to an arduous profession duties which could not 
fail to be attended by everything uncomfortable and hostile 
in nature or in men, the courage wliicli faced every enemy 
and despised every hardship, the patience with which he 
submitted to the childish questioning, the slow apprehension, 
the woodland waywardness of his pupils, the mingled firm- 
ness and good-nature with which he adapted himself to every 
turn of the most uncertain of races, the perseverance with 
which he pressed his cau-^e night and day upon all who 
could possibly further it, at home or beyond seas. We 
might go on indefinitely enumerating every virtue a mission- 
ary has been thought to require fi'om the days of St. Paul, or 
even of Buddha, and find every one exemplfied in John 
Eliot. One may, in truth, apply to him the mighty and 
mystical phrase used of his Heavenly Master, — "He emptied 
himself." All he had, all he could learn, all he could gain 
he poured out on the children of the forest. But he is not 
the only missionary of whom such things are true ; and they 
lie, as I have said, on the surface. There are other things 
that are truly his own 

In the first place, Eliot was the first man in the Ameri- 
can colonies who conceived the idea of sharing with the 
Indians in one bound the inestimable blessings of the 
gospel, and all that Christian civilization implies. Like 
other colonists who had obtained the lands over which the 
Indians ranged, by force or fraud or honest purchase, our 
fathers had treated them as allies, they had treated them as 
enemies ; they had sometimes treated them as the beasts of 



the forest, but whetlier IkmsIs oi- iiicii. they were as iilieiis — 
not merely aliens in lilood and in lani^^nai^'-''. Imt iili«Mis fioiii 
that universal empire of (Joil, of wliidi all ininian racr-i an- 
parts. The idea that, liavinL,M'slal)lishrd oni \i\\v o\ci- ilu-ni. 
rightly or wrongh-, having- tliMn uilliin our hmders. when 
they might in truth say we were in theiis, we weie ie^|ion>i- 
ble to (iod to see that we wilhhrld not fidin lin-ni Mis 
priceless gift, to enjoy whieh the l^nglishnim had in\ adrd 
the Indians' land: the idea tliat this was not nicidy a hope, 
a vision, a possibility, hut an instant duty that we niu>t do — 
that divine conception was Kliot's and Kliot's alone, derived 
straight, as he assured his pious bioi;ia[.her, fioni the in-piia- 
tion of the Holy Ghost. He no example, and he has 
had few followers. 

Then consider that, at a very early stage of his preach- 
ing, his mind awoke to the idea that the Indians should l>e 
taught our civilization as well as our religion. This eoneep- 
tion has been reached in later times, by many devol.-.j 
missionaries, only as a kind of second thought alter religous 
teaching has failed ; with Kliot it was taken up as s.n.n as 
he had begun the work of instruction. There was not an 
art of domestic culture he did not endeavor to tea.di, not a 
detail he did not consider, not a tool he did n-.t provide, not 
a want he did not foresee. Like Prometheus in the legend, 
he not only brought down the lire from heaven, but h.- used 
it to lead men out of the wood into the farm and tlu- village, 
and taught liis devoted converts how to live as well as how 
to die, substituting industry for sloth, the [.lough for the 
dart, the cloth for the skin, the stea<ly plenty ami .•omforts 
of home for the alternate starvation and rei-letion of the 


wilderness. Every effort that lias been made from that time 
to this to bring Indians within the [)ale of civilization has its 
germ — nay, has its accurate model in the work of Eliot at 
Nonantum. His Indians might be red men, but they were 
not savages. 

But he was ready with tlie third ste[), that they sliould 
be an organized community, under law and justice adminis- 
tered by themselves. The unit of the New En^lind 
commonwealth was the town, an amdent institution alike of 
the Latin and the Teutonic races, but developed by our 
fathers to such perfection as to amount to a new ci-eation. 
When town after town was breakino- off aiid oj-g-anizino- 
itself, and each individual conimunity was enjoying the 
blessings of local self-governnie:it, in churcli and state, the 
Indians — the praying Indians, the civilized Indians — alone 
remained in an uncertain status, neither under the old customs 
of the woods nor the mild laws of tlie Commonwealth, 
neither aliens nor citizens. Eliot, doubtless still with the 
object in his eye that in due time they should be admitted 
to full brotherhood, never rested till he had them orgaiuzed 
in their own town of Natick, and gave them a taste of what 
life might be when I'eason, instead of ai>i)etite and passion, 
directed their affairs. 

There is hei-e devised and perfected, by the fi)resight and 
energy of this same man, the germ, the model of the third 
element in full life, the tosvn, which, joined to the (diurch and 
the home, put the Indians in a jjosition where, if they ever 
showed their fitness, they ndght become the peers of Belling, 
ham or Bradstreet in building up the Commonwealth, under 
whose fostering arms they were willing to take shelter. 


But Eliot (lid mit stop tlicic it is tin- nciils uf tin- 
civilized man — it is idc-finiiiciii 1\ the iiiiik nl tin- l'ji!^li>li- 
maii — that he can lead: thai lir is iutt fnircd In In- miidi-d 
by the very feehle and n'eiieialh diMcptivc linht of | i'i-'MimI 
experience, Ijut that he can draw on the siiiif>. ui all aj^es 
and all nations t"oi- in>lrnclion, lor \\aiiiini4'. lor i-nroiir.iei'f- 
ment, for pleasure. Tlif ('hii^tian iclinion i-« one of ihc 
relio'ions of a hook, as the eastern failhs have it. 'I'o ihe 
Scriptures, the writinj^s, Hliot hinisclf appeale(l in all his 
teachings. But was the hook to come to lii> coMVfrts, <ir 
should they come to tlie hook'/ With a patience and a cour- 
age to which his own dannlles- cmluiancc had vet Inrni-hcd 
no par,dlel. he gra[)pled with the work of trandatinLT h<'ih 
the New and Old Testaments into the .Mohegan ti>ngue. and 
issued them, for all the witrld to icad. from our infant press at 
Cambridge. The result is hehire yon a w<.rk of almost 
superhuman labor, for which there was not the slightest hdp 
to be found in any written tongne known to tlic prot.-nndcst 
erudition of Eui-oi»e or A^i i. The baseless vision that the 
Indians might be the descend mts of the ten lost trihcs, a 
vision that has haunteil the would-he hi.>toiian> of scores of 
other nations including oui- own, vanishecl into air wlien the 
attem[)t was made to reconcile the Algon.pun with the 
Hebrew; and Eliot ha. I to firn Mnses and David. Maiihcw 
and Paul into a tongue that 1 e.-kcd words, hecausc it lacked 
the idea> on which all the thought of ralestine or(ireuce 
was based. 

It is very easy to make fun of this vei-sion : it is to 
find in its pages, without res.uting to li.-tion. evi- 
dences that the languages of our continent an<l ii> j-enple-s 


were ill-adapted to the thoughts of prophets and apostles, or 
they to them. It is easy to say no man living can j'ead the 
book now. But if you had gone to Eliot with the l)()()k in 
your hand, and tohl him that the result of all his toil should 
be that one single Indian, and one alone, should l)e led by 
its pages to fix his hope on the gospel who would not other- 
wise have embraced it, he would have re[)lied that he had a 
higher I'eward than his labors had deserved. 

This book is the pioneer of all the translations that have 
been made into languages, wholly alien from those in which 
the Bible was written, in all the (juarters of the globe. The 
Society for the Propagati(»n of the (iospel among the Indians 
was avowedly the woi'k of Eliot's efforts ; ])ut in point of 
fact, all the Bible Societies in the world, with tlicii- presses, 
their salesrooms, their editions, great and small, in every 
language under heaven, their army of distiibuters, are the 
growth of this volume, the work of a single busy, gentle, 
aged saint. His s})ecific work has become a curiosity for 
book collectors and public libraries, and as such each copy is 
valued at many hundreds of dollars; but if the original price 
of a copy had been put at compound interest in 16(33, and 
the money left to accumulate till to-day, it could not pay for 
the courage, the patience, the devotion, the overflowing love 
stamped on the page with every one of its uncouth and 
forgotten words. 

I need not tell you that the founder of the Roxbury 
Latin School could not rest until he had o-iven the Indians 
schools, and schools taught by their own people. He tried 
more ; he tried to train up preachers for them by means of a 
college education ; Ixit the process was too much for the 


material. A single Tndiaii pass.-d td tin- d.-trrcc of Biu-Ih-Imi- 
of Arts at Haivaid College, and di.-d the same vear. \\\ 
understand tlie art of ("ollet^n' instruction hetter now; wc do 
not force Indians to learn the old-wuild studies (tf Latin and 
Greek and Hel)rew and IomIc, wliidi our own |)ri)Uiinfnt 
undergraduates eonsidcr tlicy havi- outL^rown : in iftuni lor 
the science of lacrosse, wliicli we have lioirowr.j from their 
ancient erudition, we have trained them in tin- mystery 
of knocking each other into dough on the football lield. and 
Carlisle School has the honor of ranking among the verv ft-w 
institutions which Harvard has lu-aten at foothall. 

Eliot stands, then, as the pioneer in this s\stem of 
dealing with the red man in our Ixtrders. which seeks to 
make him a civilized Christian, a member of an oiguni/.ed 
community, able to read the oracles of his faith in his own 
language. And all these things he did on two itrinciples : 
first, of absolute sincerity — he never proposed ti» cheat the 
Indians into anything, lait used the same fiankm-ss that he 
would use to Endicott or ^Mather: and next he employed 
throughout the same gentleness, the same forl)earance that 
marked the whole of his long and saintly life. There is no 
conversion by the sabre in his dealings with his wooilland 
brethren; he appears at the outset as tiieir friend, a weak 
and sinful man like themselves, whose sole objei-t is to make 
them share his temporal and eternal happiness. 

I would ask any one if two hundred years have improved 
on this theory. Details have altered : our schools, our farms, 
our communities, our books for the Indians are not the same 
as Eliot's, any more than our ow n dress, our own furniture, 
our own houses are the same as his; but the lines on whicli 


he laid down his work have never been improved upon by 
any master-buikler since his time. 

If, then, we consider Eliot's work as it arose in Ids own 
heart, and was carried oat in his own mind and b}' his own 
hand, we must, it seems to me, accord it unlimited praise. 
But men judge things by what they call results ; they ask, 
Did the work succeed? Did Eliot effect what he sought? 
And they say he failed ; they point to the steady dying-out 
of the Indian communities, and their absorption so far as they 
exist by the stronger negro race, till at last, if we say we have 
Indians at all in Massachusetts, we shall hardly find in them 
a trace of all the devotion and thought and work that Eliot 
gave to them. That the thousand copies of his Bible have 
shrunk to a few score, preserved only as curiosities, and res- 
cued almost entirely from European libraries, while those 
distributed among his converts ceased to be read and finally 
passed out of existence, is held to be a type of what has 
become of his work in general — a curiosity of religious and 
social history, feeble at the outset and barren of results. 

It would be absurd to deny that there is truth in such a 
view ; but one thing is evident to me, that Eliot's failure, if 
failure it was, was in great part due to his never receiving, 
either at home or abroad, anything like the help which his 
labors demanded. I do not forget the many wise and good 
men that supported him ; I do not forget the aid he received 
from Gookin in Massachusetts and Boyle in England ; I do 
not forget that from time to time the chief men of the 
colony came to visit his Indians as men now visit Hampton 
and Carlisle. But I say that his enterprise was one that 
ought to have shamed his contemporaries out of their apathy 


toward tlu^ wai'ds of tlic ('(iiiinniiiwcaltli ; and if tlit-v had 
Sfivi'ii to Eliot's i)riiviii<'- Indians (Mu; tithe a\r, onr hiiii- 
dredtli of tlic time tliat the}' <^av(! to tlic Antinoiniaii foiitro- 
versy, to the (|uanuls with the N\'W Nctlicilands. to the war 
with Philip — nay, one nii^ht almost say, t<t sudi (liscussioii 
as whethei" the Indians were Israelites, the story of success 
or failure niiy-lit have l)een written Ncry <lillVrcntl\ . 

In fact, nothing- illustrates more tcrrihlv the iiuel 
neglect and ignorance of Eliot's woik among the (•oh)uisLs 
than the sad fact tliat wlicn i'hilip's w.w was upon tlinn. 
and they naturally and rightly rose in arms against thrir 
secret and deadly foe, they visited the i)raying Imlians. who 
Avere actually fighting on their side against their red hiethren, 
with the basest suspicion: and these most inollensive o| men 
suffered hardly more from the malignity of their own kins- 
men than from the insolence of tlie white men. 

It has been said sometimes that the ("atholie mission- 
aries in Canada understood how to deal with the Indians 
better than Eliot and his Protestant coadjutoi-s: that they 
gave the Indians the sort of religion that was good fur them, 
and did not engage in the vain task of l.ringiug them int.. 
European civilization. I cannot undertake to say exactly 
how much religion is good for an Indian; Itut when I reflect 
that the Indians of Canada were hurled against our frontier, 
and carried tire and sword into our l)order towns with the 
encouragement of their spiritual guides, I nul^t be allowed lo 
distrust the superiority of their methods of convei-siou. 

But it may be that Eliot's attempt to convert, to civil- 
ize, to educate the Indians could not succeed; that Nature 
had bound the red man's heart with the m..untaius and 


snows of apathy and feebleness, which no Christian love or 
Christian training could dissolve into fertilizing dew, l)ut 
which was destined to melt away and run off in desolating 
avalanches and torrents under the fierce and fiery discipline 
of a keener and sturdier race. It may he that contact with 
the white man could only precipitate the process of destruc- 
tion by war and disease, which had begun before his arrival. 
Be it so — be it tliat the very contact of the races withers the 
red man. In that case I prefer to see him perish under such 
treatment as that of Eliot and Whipple and Armstrong, than 
under that of Standish and Underbill, and the paternal gov- 
ernment of the United States. Hampton and Carlisle are 
gentler poisons, if poisons they are, than treaties with inde- 
pendent nations, broken by force and vitiated by brand. I 
had rather have Eliot's translation of the Bible, which 
nobody can read,* than a post trader's translation of a statute 
which the Indians read one way and he reads another, secure 
in the i)rotection of the infernal spoils system, which every 
politician who defends knows he is lying as he defends it. I 
prefer to see if Indians cannot be made citizens, at the risk 
of extirpation, than to witness the process of actual extirpa- 
tion carried on by alternate craft and bloodshed among 
frontier communities, which talk incessantly of the hopelessly 
diseased character of the Indian race, and gfive evidence all 
the time that they have caught tlie infection and grown more 
savage than the savages themslves. 

If it is indeed the will of God that the Indian should 
disappear by our touch, let that touch be like that of a com- 
passionate angel, breathing words of the minister of God's 

*It is understood that the venerable Bishop Whipple finds Eliot's Bible of great use in 
instructing the Indians of the Northwest, all the Algonquin tribes speaking kindred languages. 


pity, and not of a nialiLjnanl di-vil, vt-llinL,' with di-lij^'lit at 
every stroke he deals of (lie Iiliistin<( sword. ( )iir f;itlifis art* 
constantly exposed to silly jests and almsc f(.r t ivatnicnl 
of the Indians. 1 would not [lalliate or dtiiv on,- of tlnMf 
crimes, when the white men were weak and the reil men 
strong; but let those who in this (hiy are hiMterinj,' their 
example of fraud and violence lirst raist- an Hliot from 
among themselves, to attempt, at least, a hrotherly treatnu-nl 
of the forest children, before they claim tliat horrible privilcgt; 
of the strong to oppress the weak. 

No, Eliot did not fail. Sneii woik as his is its own 
success. The cross is itself the sceptre, the thorns 
selves are the crown; that first i)reaching at Nonantnm. the 
first village at Natick, the mission to I'assaeonawav at 
Pawtucket Falls, the pages of this obsolete volnme are 
themselves the imperial laurels won by love o\t'r hate, by 
sacrifice over greed, by courage over doubt, by the gosjiol of 
the Lord over the passions of man. When we stamp on our 
records that ancient bearing, the Indian on his a/.uie field, 
looking- to the star of Bethh-hem, we l»id forever to siiiiie 
from their pages a brighter gloiy than was won by the armed 
hand of Sidney, striking for peace under liU'rty with his 
tyrant-hating sword. And when the ancient nice of Hliot 
counts up the glories of its far-exti-nded name, the n)artyr 
of parliamentary liberty, the dauntless defentler of (Jibraltar, 
the wise governor of India, the gallant sailor of Lake Kric, 
the unwearied educators of our own State and time, it shall 
still set as its noblest representative that ehanii>ion of the 
faith, the faultless apostle, as ardent as I'eter, as nnwearie»l 
as Paul, and as instinct with lieaveidy love as his namesake 
saint, who has long since welcomed him to a share of the 
Master's bosom. 


At the conclusion of the oration the solo "Be Thou 
Faithful Unto Death," from Mendelssohn's "St. Paul," was 
sung by Mr. William H. Dunham. 

Mayor Coub. — There is one citizen to whom, more 
than to any other, we are indebted for the celebration which 
we are enjoying to-day. I had the honor of proposing it to 
the City C-onncil, but Mr. William Carver Bates should have 
the credit of first suggesting it. Faithful for years to the 
memory of Eliot, he has endeavored constantly to impress 
upon liis fellow-citizens the duty and privilege of commem- 
orating liis life and deeds. T have the pleasure of introducino- 
to you Mr. Bates, wlio w411 speak to us of "Eliot at 

ADDRESS, — ''Eljot at NOnaniim." 

Presentation of E:iiot Terrace ami i:ii«»t M<'iiM»rial Fiiml 
to the City of Xewton. 


Mr. Mayor and Fellow Citizens: 

When the Municipal Government of the ll»e Citv of 
Newton was organized in 187-3, the device chosen for tlie 
city seal Avas the scene of Eliot preaeliiii*'' to the Indians at 
Nonantum in 1646; and it was well t-hnst-n, for it was ii<it 
only, as Dr. Homer wrote in Ids Historical Sketch of Newton, 
"the principal event of these parts," but it was an incident 
which will always interest intelligent people, for it recalls 
much that is best in human character, and it speaks to future 
generations with that true elo(juence which '•consists in the 
subject, the man, and the occasion." The beginning of 
organized Protestant missions, the beginnin^-- of the still 
unfinished work of civilizing the Indians of America, the 
first address in their own tongue to the Indians ujton " Life, 
Judgment, and the World to Come," in short, the beginning 
of a work prosecuted through a long life under great dis- 
couragements but with a zeal and intelligence, a patience 


and perseverance seldom equalled in the liistory of civiliza- 
tion, it must be that the scene of such associations will have 
an abiding- jjlace in the reverence of future generations. 

The mind of man delights to concentrate its attention 
upon the particular spot of the earth's surface associated with 
a great event or with the deeds of gi'eat men ; it is, I suppose, 
that at such places the emotions take on a warmer glow, 
even as the sun's rays, when focussed, kindle an answering 
fire. Thus it will be that Nonantum, the old original 
Nonantnm of 1646 to 1651, must become more and more the 
Mecca that will attract the thoughts and steps of pilgrims 
to historic shrines. 

Those first gatherings in the wigwam of Waban, "one 
of their principal men," have been ©ften described ; the five 
years which followed have been less dwelt upon. While 
Eliot was drawing them on to "civility and religion" the 
larger and more permanent settlement at Natick had rather 
eclipsed the beginning at Nonantum ; but we must remember 
that here at Nonantum John Eliot began to preach the 
Gospel to the Indians ; here was founded the first Christian 
community of Indians within the English colonies ; with this 
spot on the fair landscape of our Garden City is associated 
this unique event in the beginnings of New England. The 
precise location of Nonantum is fortunately not left in 
uncertainty; few events in our early history were so faithfully 
recorded ; we turn to the Eliot Tracts, Gookin's "History of 
the Praying Indians," and Eliot's letters to Robert Boyle. 

"Upon October 28, 1646, four of us, (having sought 
God) went unto the Indians inhabiting within our bounds, 
with desire to make known the ways of their peace to them." 



Whatever the atiiKisphi're of that aiitiiiini ilivy, it nmst 
have been Indian suniincr in the lnarts dt T.liot ami liis 
companions, Heath, She{)ai(l, and (Jookin. as ihcy ••••aim* to 
the wigwam of Waban, one of their principal men." Kdward 
Jackson, one of our setth'rs, was prol)alily present also. 
The details of that beginuini^r have been reheai-sed lo yon. 
A few months later Eliot essayed to luing the Imlian.s 
together into a town, that they might ''cohabit and learn 
useful arts and simple husbandry."' "I find it necessary," 
wrote Eliot, "to combine civility and religion." To this 
solution of the Indian problem we too have come at livst, 
after two centuries of dishonor. 

The little town was founded, ''the fii-st Christian eom- 
munity of Indians within the English colonies." 

"This towne the Indians did desire to know wliat name 
it should have, and it was told them it shouhl be called 
Noonatomen, which signifies in English, ^•j(.icin:,^ l>eeause 
they hearing the word and seeking to know (iod, the Eng- 
lish did rejoice at it, and God did rejoice at it, which pUsused 
them much, and therefore that is to be the name of their 

The work of civilization went on, preventing and fol- 
lowing religious teaching. The men were taught to dig, the 
women to spin, and all to live orderly lives. What <liseour- 
agements the good teacher met we know but little of. lie 
records: "You know likewise that we .-xlLTted them to 
fence their grounds with ditches and stone walls upon the 
banks, and promised to help them with shovels, si.a«le.s 
mattocks, crows of iron; and they are very desirous of 
following that counsel and call upon me to heli. them faster 
than I can get them, though I have now bought a pretty 


store, and the}' (I hope) are at work The 

women are desirous to learn to spin, and I have procured 
wheels for sundry of them and they can spin pretty well. 
They begin to grow industrious and find something to sell at 
market all the year long. All winter they sell brooms, 
staves, etc., pots, baskets, and turkeys. In the spring, 
cranberries, fish, strawberries; in the summer, huckleberries, 
grapes, fish, venison, etc., and they find good benefit by the 
market and grow more and more to make use thereof. 
Besides sundry of them work wath the English in haytime 
and harvest, yet it is not comparable to what they might do 
if they were more industrious, and old boughs must be bent 
a little at once. If we can set the young twigs on a better 
bent it will be God's mercy." 

A little later Eliot wrote: "They moved also, as you 
know, for a school, and through God's mercy a course is now 
taken that there be a school at both places Avliere their 
children are taught." There were discouragements manifold 
and sore, but none greater than he afterwards met at Dedham 
and Natick. Nonantum was too near the English ; idleness, 
drunkenness, dissolute living, were hard to overcome, and 
Eliot resolved to abandon Nonantum for some larger tract 
more remote. In 1649 Eliot wrote: 'T find it absolutely 
necessary to combine civility with religion, and that maketh 
me to have many thoughts that the way to do it to the 
purpose is to live among them in a place distant from the 
English, for many reasons, and bring them to cohabitation, 
government, arts, and trades." This is perhaps the first 
appearance of the "college settlement" in Protestant mis- 
sions. Mr. Eliot mentions an incident not often mentioned 


in accounts of Nouiintum, uiid I vi-iitiire t<i ht:i11 it. It 
appears that in a family of Noiiaiituni a chiltl had died, and 
the family and friends had arraii^^eil to do as the Kurdish did 
by preparing the little oiu- for Christian l)urial ; hut tlicy 
were not content until a prayer had hcen offered wiien all 
were gathered under a large tree; one nf ijicir MUiid>er 
prayed very earnestly a long time. .Mr. Jackson standing not 
far off and observing, ''much marvelling thereat, it not being 
the custom for the English to assemble themselves for prayer 
on such occasions." Well might they receive the name 
"Praying Indians," if the first prayer at a funeral service in 
New England was offered at Nonantum. 

In 1651 the Nonantum village was removed to Natick, 
but for five years here the experiment had been tried. Here 
at Nonantum were the first hopes of the good man centred : 
here came Heath, Shepard, Gookin, Eliot, picked men from 
the first settlers. We are not to suppose that with the 
removal to Natick the connection of Eliot and Nonantum 
ceased. In 1676-77 Major Gookin wrote a history of the 
Praying Indians. He says, speaking of the Indians at the 
close of Phillip's war: ''Some settled about Hooanantum 
Hill near the very place where they fii-st began to pray to 
God and Mr. Eliot first taught them, which was about thirty 
years since. Here Anthony, one of the U-achei-s, built a 
large wigwam, at which place the lecture and the scliool 
were kept in the winter of 1676, where Major (i<.okin and 
Mr. Eliot ordinarily met every fortnight." 

In 1677 Major Gookin made a report to the (ieiuTal 
Court, giving an account of the location of tlu-so faithful 
friends of the English, after their dispersion during the war. 


He says "a fourth company are at Nonantum on land of 
Deacon Trowbridge who allows them to build on his land." 

We may then picture the good P21iot continuing his 
personal relation with Nonantum near to his life's end. Just 
one hundred years ago the Minister of the First Church of 
Newton, Jonathan Homer, still remembered by some now 
living as old Dr. Homer, wrote an " Historical Sketch of 
Newton." He was clear and positive as to the location of 
Nonantum being on the southern slope of Nonatum Hill; he 
had talked with Abraham Hyde, who, boi'u in 1717, remem- 
bered traces of the Indian village, which he had helped 
remove in his youth. Jackson, in his history of Newton, 
accepted the tradition that Waban's wigwam was situated 
where the Eliot Terrace was erected about twenty years 

The Eliot Memorial Association was formed in 1876 to 
receive from the Kenrick family a plot of ground, a portion 
of the original Nonantum lands, to fix upon it some enduring 
memorial or landmark, which sliould recall by suitable 
inscriptions the work of Eliot and the men associated with 
him, and then to convey the same to the City of Newton for 
perpetual ownership and care. 

In selecting the form of memorial, the committee of the 
association was not unmindful that a granite or marble shaft 
is, to many, the appropriate form of memorial sculpture ; 
but these have so long been used as an expression of 
mortuary grief, to the conversion of our cities of the 
dead into unattractive marble yards, that another form 
was adopted, the terrace, which should be substantial, 
harmonious, and give opportunity for suitable inscriptions 



to recall the men and events, and Irave ()|i|ioitiinitv for smli 
additional deeoiation as the judL,MMcht nl' th(; futnit; ini;;ht 

The location of the ICliot 'rciraei- is all tliat rmild l»c 
desired; at present a [)ast()ial view, inviting,' to eoMteinpla- 
tion ; at the head of the vaUex hetwcen the Nonaiit iini and 
Waban hills, its outlook is upon hoth. their wdodrd slopes 
leaniiitif to embrace the fair scene ; to the ea,sl the walls of 
St. John's Seminar3% risini^ above tiie tree tops, recall the visit 
of the Jesuit Driiilletes to Kliot at a time when the I'uiitati 
code forbade permanent residence to a Romanist. 

The inscription of the tablet is historically coiieet : hcU' 
was Nonantum : in the vicinity, at least, was Wahan's 
wigwam; and here was founded the fii-st community of 
Christian Indians wdthin the English colonies. It is enough, 
precise as President Eliot could make it: but there were 
others, "Heath, Shepard, Gookin, Waban."* The recoid ..f 
that time was, ''On the 28th of October, four of us, (having 
sought God) went unto the Indians." W'lio were these 
three who came with Eliot on that Octol>er day to the 
wigwam of Waban, ''one of their prineij)al men/" Heath, 
elder of the church at Koxbury, Eliot's friend and et.unsel- 
lor; Thomas Shepard, pastor of the church at Cambridge; 
Daniel Gookin, friend and companion of l-'.liot in his w(.rk 
from beginning to end, historian and guardian of the Indians. 
These names are fittingly joined with those of Eliot and 
Waban upon the memorial terrace. Edward Ja.kson, one t.f 
our first permanent settlers, was doubtless there. These were 
men who were a part of that "winnowed grain" whit h went 
to the planting of New England. 


The trustees of the Eliot Memorial Association deem 
this anniversary the fitting time to convey to the City of 
Newton the plot of land and memorial terrace for perpetual 
ownership and care ; they do this, confident in the belief that 
future generations will value this spot with increasing affec- 
tion, as one of the most interesting landmarks connected 
with the beginning of New England. 

The pleasing duty remains of announciug another mem- 
orial to Eliot, and one which we may believe would be 
especially gratifying to the saintly man : it is a memorial 
which will be sought in vain upon any landscape, but it will 
exist in the hearts and minds of successive classes of pupils 
in Newton schools forever. 

Eliot's interest in the education of the young was a 
marked characteristic, and he has been called the father of 
free schools in New England. It seems approj)riate to 
establish a meuiorial to him in Newton schools. The Mem- 
orial fund (of three hundred dollars) now created provides 
by its deed of trust for the encouragement of the study of 
American history by the offer of an annual prize upon such 
subjects as may be announced from year to year, the details 
being in charge of the proper authority. Tlie terms of the 
trust need not here be enumerated. We must believe that 
the annual study of some particular period or subject of 
early American history and the consequent friendly competi- 
tion for the Eliot prize for an Eliot essay, by pupils of 
Newton schools forev^er, will create an Eliot memorial more 
lasting and beneficent than any ordinary structure which the 
art of man can build. 


Mr. Mayor, in hdiiilf of iIk; trustees of ili.' Kliot M.-iuo- 
rial Association, I have the [)leasuic of eonvevin;; to yoii, us 
the official representative of the ('it\ of Newton, ihr I'.liot 
Memorial Terrace and the Eliot Memorial l-'iniij as descrilHMl 
in this covenant and agreement did}- exeeuted and to h.- 
recorded in the records of Middlesex Count}. 

Mayor Cobb. — Mr. Bates, and f,n.,itlenicii who are 
associated with 3-011 in this q-nod work: ( )n hehalf of tin- 
City, we gratefully acce[)t the memorial already ereeteil and 
the trust imposed upon ns. We are confident that all down 
through the ages the children of Newton will enihalin in 
their memor}' and keep ever green in their reeollertion the 
noble life and service of John Eliot. (Api)lause.) 

The "Gloria," from Gounod's '■^ St. Cecilia," was ren- 
dered by the choir, after which the exercises closed with the 
benediction, pronounced by Rev. Daiuel L. Furl)cr, D. D., 
pastor emeritus of the First Church, Newton Centre: 

''Now may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and tlie 
love of God and the communion of the Holy Ghost abide 
with you all. Amen. 

rrrv of xKwn'ox. 

In Tiik B(jako ov Mayor ami Ai.dkkmi-n, 
20705 Dccemltcr 9, 1896, 

That the City of Newton hereby accepts the premises known as the Kliot 
Memorial, and the sum of three hundred dollars (S300) to he known as the 
Eliot Memorial Fund, all as more fully described in a certain indenture made on 
the 4th day of November, 1S96, a copy of which accompanies this cjrder, l)y which 
a certain tract of land in the easterly part of Newton, near Magnolia Avenue and 
Monument Street, and the said sum of three hundred dollars is conveyed in trust 
to the city of Newton by the trustees of the Fliot Memorial Association; and 
that His Honor the Mayor, be and is hereiiy authorized to execute said indenture 
in behalf of the city of Newton, for the purposes and trusts therein more fully 
set forth. 

Read and adopted. Sent down for concurrence. 

I. F. KlNC.Sr.URY, C/er/t. 

In Common Council, iS December, 1S96. 
Read and adopted in concurrence. 


Approved December 21, 1896. 

HENKV F. ( OHH. A/tiyor. 

JNDKN him:. 

Copy of Conveyance to the City of Newton of die i:ii(»t 

3Ieinorial Terrace and tlie Eliot Memorial I'lind !>> 

Trustees of the Eliot Memorial Association. 

THIS INDENTURE made this fourth day of Novem- 
ber, A. D. 1896, by and between Francis J. I'aikti-. < )tis 
Pettee and William C. Bates, all of Newton, in the County 
of Middlesex and CommouAvealth of Massachusetts, Trustees 
of the Eliot Memorial Asscjciation, party of the first part, 
and the City of Newton, a municipal cor[)oration duly estaln 
lished according to law, situated in said Count}', party of the 
second part, WITNESSETH : 

First: The said party of the first pait <loth hereby 
remise, release and forever quitclaim unto tlie said party of 
the second part a certain tract of land situated in the easterly 
part of said Newton, bounded and described as follows, 
to wit : 

Beginning- at a stake in the westerly line of Magnolia 
Avenue, so called, thence running south eight and one 
quarter degrees west along said Magnolia Aveinie thirty 
(30) feet: thence along the two branches of Monument 
Street, so called, by three curves and two stmight lines, a.^ 
follows, to wit : Curving to the right by a radius of liftt-en 
(15) feet for a distance of thirty-one (31) feet live (5) 


inches ; thence running north fifty-one and three quarters 
degrees west forty-nine (49) feet; tlience curving to the 
right by a radius of four (4) feet for a distance of eight (8) 
feet four and one lialf (4 1-2) inches; thence running north 
sixty-eiglit and one quarter degrees east forty-nine (49) feet ; 
thence curving to the right by a radius of fifteen (15) feet 
for a distance of thirty-one (31) feet five (5) inches to the 
point of beginning, and containing two tliousand five hun- 
dred and eighty-seven (2587) square feet, as shown by a 
plan made by Shedd and Sawyer annexed to a deed to said 
trustees from Mary M. Taylor and others, dated September 
twenty-ninth, 1877, recorded with Middlesex South District 
Deeds, book 1454, page 90 ; said plan being also recorded at 
the end of the same book. 

TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the aljove granted prem- 
ises with all the privileges and appurtenances thereto belong- 
ing to the said City of Newton, and its successors and 
assigns, but in trust nevertheless for the following purposes : 
That the said lot of land shall be reserved as the site of a 
memorial to commemorate the fact that it was near that 
place that John Eliot first preached the Gospel to the 
Indians, and that said land shall not be used for any other 
purposes and the same shall be maintained, improved and 
cared for, for the aforesaid purposes by the said City of 

Second : Said parties of the first part do hereby sell, 
assign, transfer and set over unto said party of the second part 
and its successors and assigns the sum of three hundred 
dollars. To Have And To Hold all and singular the said 
sum of money with the additions thereto and accretions 


thereof, and all fuitlicr sums wliidi umy Ih) ^'iveii t«i suid 
city for llu- jjiiiposes hfifin naincd to the said Citv of 
Newloii and its siicet'ssors and assitrns, Imt in trust ni'Vrrtlie- 
less for the following- jiurposcs: 'IMiat the imoinr nf said 
sum shall he used in wlmlc or in part annualU for tin- 
l.ur[)nses hereinafter (h'scrihcfl, nanifly: Tlic fiuiil lifirli\ 
created hy this instrumfiil shall he known as the "Klicjt 
Memorial Fund," it heing estahlished as a per[)L'tual inciuo- 
rial of the Reverend John Eliot to recall his long life of 
service to the poor, the ignorant, the despised Indians of 
America, and in recognition of his interest in tlie education 
of the young through free public school instruction. The 
income only of this fund shall he used in whole or in part to 
stimulate in the pupils of the public sciiools of Newttm the 
study of American history, especially the early histttry of 
Massachusetts and the beginnings of New England, by the 
offer of a prize or prizes annually for essays written by the 
pupils of the public schools of Newton for the curi-cnt year in 
which such prizes are offered, and upon such sul)ji'ct.s as may 
be appointed. The essays and prizes shall be known as the 
^'Eliot Essays and Prizes." The conduct and details of the 
annual competition herein provided for shall be in (diarge oi 
the Superintendent of Schools: or, when such ollice is vacant, 
of such person or pei'sons as shall be a[)i)ointcd by the Mayor 
for the purpose. x\nd it is furthci- provided that when it 
shall appear that the full income has not b.-cn needed or 
used in the distribution of prizes aniuially, such surplus of 
income may be used, under the direction of the Mayor and 
Superintendent of Schools, for the pundiase of implements 
or aids to historical sludv. such as books, maps antl pictures, 


which may be of use to the pupils of the Newton schools and 
stimulate the study of American history; such books, maps, 
etc. shall be marked as purchased from the income of the 
" Eliot Memorial Fund." 

Third : Said party of the second part hereby accepts the 
aforesaid trusts, and agrees to liold said real estate and fund 
and accumulations, and use and apply the same in accordance 
with the aforesaid trusts. 

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the said party of the first 

part have hereunto set their hands and seals, and the said 

party of the second part hath caused its corporate seal to be 

hereto affixed, and these presents to be signed in its name 

and behalf by Henry E. Cobb, its Mayor, the day and year 

first above written. 

Sujned and sealed FRANCIS J. PARKER, [seal] 

in the preseyice of OTIS PETTEE. [seal] 

William T. Dartnell, WILLIAM C. BATES, [seal] 

Capen Brown. 


Mayor of the City 

of Newton. 


Middlesex ss. November 4, 1896. 

Then personally appeared the above named William C. 
Bates, and acknowledged the foregoing instrument to be his 
free act and deed. 

Before me, 


Justice of the Peace, 




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