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Full text of "A retrospect of colonial times in Burlington County : an address delivered before the Young Friends' Association, 2nd Mo. 9, 1906, at Moorestown, New Jersey"

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BY DR. A. M. STACKHOUSE 



a IRctiospect of dolonial 
Jlimcs in ffiurlington 
Count? % % % % 



H An Address delivered before 
THE Young Friends' Association 

2ND. MO. 9, 1906 AT MOORESTOWN NEW 

Jersey by Dr. A. M. Stackhouse 



,) Ihe SETTLE PRESS 

Moorestown, New Jersey 



BDG. Ho. 1 37 



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PUBLIC LIBRA.RY 






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150 COPIEIS OF "THIS 

PAMPHLEIT have: B EI EI N 

PRINXEID OF \A/HICH THIS IS 

NO: 99 



^ 



a retrospect of 
Colonial Times 

IN 

Burlington County 




U) (s-aTfc TAKE it for granted that all here to-night are 

interested in everything relating to their forbears; who 

they were ; what they did ; how they lived and where 

J they came from. Every one has had four grandparents, and for 

every generation we go back the number is doubled, so that 

seven or eight generations ago which takes most of us to the 

-^ period of the early English settlement of West New Jersey, 
(i 

each one of us had from 64 to 128 ancestors wandering about 

somewhere on this planet. I believe I am strictly within 

bounds in saying that there are few present here who are not 

descended from some of those early settlers. The lines of 

descent and ascent between them and ourselves are so inex- 



tricably mixed up by marriage, that we are practically all 
relatives and may safely call ourselves cousins. So to-night 
if I should have occasion to reflect on any of those old fellows, 
remember that we may speak freely, because it is all in the 
family. 

The early settlers in Burlington County were almost to a 
man English, There were some Swedes and a few Dutch 
here when our Quaker ancestors came, A few Welsh and 
Scotch names occur but very few. The name De Cou (Decow 
as it is often spelled in the old annals) has a French twang but 
I suspect it is after all English. A careful search through 
Revel's Book of Surveys and other old records to which I 
have had access fails to disclose any Mac's or O's, any Mur- 
phys, Donohoes, Raffertys, or any other distinctively Irish 
names, excepting Bryan and Sullivan, It is true that Camden 
County was included in the "Irish Tenth," as it was called, 
and settled by immigrants from Ireland, among them the 
Sharps and Huggs, but these names are not distinctively Irish, 
I am inclined to believe that most of these settlers were not 
indigenous to Ireland, but had originally gone there froni 
England; or, at least, their ancestry was English, Bryan 
savors of the "old sod," but Thomas Bryan, from whom sev- 



eral here present were I believe descended, came from 
Northamptonshire, England. There is documentary evidence 
to prove this. The name Turlough, or Turallas Sullivan, 
(the last name is a familiar one in Moorestown) appears as a 
resident of Evesham in 1696 and his family settled subse- 
quently in Chester Township. This patriot appears to have 
had an interest in the piratical adventures of the notorious 
Captain Kidd, He came here from Newcastle County, Pa., 
(now Delaware) for his health, as the other colonies were 
making it unpleasant for pirates, while both East and West 
Jersey harbored them. There were lots of Jerseymen inter- 
ested in piracy in those days and in East Jersey they would 
tolerate no nonsense. In 1701, Governor Hamilton with two 
of his Council and two Justices, attempted to hold a Court of 
Sessions at Middletown, Monmouth County, to try one Moses 
Butterworth, who had sailed with Captain Kidd. The people, 
however, righteously indignant at the authorities daring to 
interfere with their rights, broke up the court, gobbled up the 
Governor, Council and Judges and imprisoned them for sev- 
eral days. The Governor no doubt promised them to be 
good and behave himself and not play that game any more, 
as nothing appears to have been done to the mob. One of 



these Judges was Jedidiah Allen, in whom we are interested. 
His daughter Esther married James Adams. They moved 
here to Chester Township and deeded to the Society of 
Friends what is now the graveyard across the street. 

The ship Kent, which brought hither the first English 
settlers, reached Newcastle on the Delaware in the early 
summer of 1677. After consultation, Burlington Island was 
selected as the place for settlement and steps were taken to 
to lay out the town. High Street was first laid out and then 
ten lots of nine acres each were surveyed on the west side. 
These were for the London proprietors, the Yorkshire pro- 
prietors locating on the east side. The town was then ready 
for occupation and so one dismally cold, rainy day, towards 
the end of October, several men came ashore to take possess- 
ion. Lots were cast for these ten divisions, and the third one 
from the river fell to Daniel Wills, who with his sons and 
and servants set out to find it. It had been raining steadily 
for twenty-four hours or more, and the whole party were 
drenched to the skin and shivering with cold. Reaching the 
place, they at once set to work to make some sort of shelter 
with forked sticks and poles, with blankets stretched across 
them. A fire was started, but in spite of all their efforts they 



could neither keep dry nor warm. Night came on, and to add 
to their discomfort it was found that the supply of firewood, 
hastily gathered, would not last until morning. There was 
plenty of wood around, but to go out in the dark, chop it and 
bring it in was not the kind of a job the sons and servants 
cared to undertake. They feared the Indians that might be 
prowling around; they were not sufficiently acquainted with 
them at that time to trust them. They did not care to make 
pin-cu£h:ons of themselves and be stuck full of arrows, and the 
hair they had brought with them from England they preferred 
to keep. They perhaps argued among themselves that it 
wasn't their work to go out after wood anyhow and so they 
one and all generously allowed the "boss" to go out and get 
it himself. Now I don't want to dismiss this incident without 
a word of comment. We pretty generally agree, I think, that 
those young men ought to have been ashamed of themselves. 
I hope so, for among them were some of your ancestors and 
mine. Daniel Wills brought with him several servants, among 
them William Matlack, John Stokes, George Elkinton and, 
if Judge Clement is correct, Thomas Bryan, and it is quite 
likely they were all on hand at that time. I have no doubt 
that most all of you are brave and fearless and had you been 



there would have gone out after the wood and allowed Daniel 
the choicest place near the fire. Personally, I believe in her- 
edity. I wouldn't go foraging around the wood pile on a cold 
dark, rainy night, not even if the wood was already cut in 
stove lengths. 

We are indebted to Daniel Wills, Junior, for recording this 
incident, which is especially worthy of note as being the story 
of the first hardships those pioneers suffered here. Consider- 
able time elapses before the veil lifts for us to see them again: 
in fact, it has never lifted sufficiently to allow us a good view 
of their domestic life during the first fifty years of our West 
Jersey Colonial times. Tradition tells us something, but tra- 
d'tion is not to be relied on. We get some hints from the early 
laws enacted and from the records of wills, and the settlement 
of estates. We learn something again from the few letters 
quoted by Smith in his History of New Jersey, but the infor- 
mation there contained relates mostly to a description of the 
country as found. Thomas Budd and Gabriel Thomas both 
wrote books describing the climate, productions and prospec- 
tive industries. They are instructive, but were mainly designed 
to influence immigration. It is certain that our forefathers 
were not idle, for their wants though few were pressing and 



must be supplied. We know they attended strictly to their 
religious duties and went to meeting with commendable regu- 
larity, but all other details are exceedingly meagre. 

No class of men could have told us so much of the home 
life of our forefathers, as the ministering Friends of the time, 
who visited every place where members of the Society could 
be found. Thomas Story, Samuel Bownas, John Richardson, 
Thomas Chalkley and others all kept Journals. They had 
unusual opportunities to become acquainted with the people, 
as they met them at their meetings and their homes and were 
entertained at their firesides with a homely hospitality that 
our modern social life knows not of. They might have told 
us so much we would now be glad to know, but instead of 
this they tell us what meetings they held or attended, some- 
times where they lodged, whether they had an open or closed 
time, and then proceed in extenso to give us the result of the 
examination of their spiritual secretions, digressing occasionally 
to let us know their opinion of George Keith and I am afraid 
their prejudice against him was too strong for them to be 
always just. Thomas Story, for instance, was a man of more 
than average ability and attainments and his Journal covers 
more than 750 folio pages. He was here in Moorestown in 



8 

1699 and this is all the good man tells us: 

"Next day had another Meeting at John Adams, seven miles 
further down the River; where many people were gathered. 
In the Beginning of this Meeting, my Mind was greatly con- 
cerned about going to the Yearly Meeting, to be in the 
Eighth Month, at Choptank in Maryland; which being yielded 
to in secret I then had a pretty open time." He then goes on 
filling nearly half a page with matter equally uninteresting. He 
came here again the same year and he records: "I was at an 
appointed meeting at our Friend John Adams' in New Jersey 
about 13 miles by water, and that night lodged at Widow 
Spicar's; and the next day returned to Philadelphia." Only 
this and nothing more. He creates the impression as he flits 
from place to place of travelling with the velocity of an auto- 
mobile on the White Horse Pike. John Fothergill was here at 
Chester Meeting, 1st. mo. 28th. 1737. He mentions this fact 
in as many words and fuither says he had "a large and 
weighty meeting near the Widow Evans' that Evening." 
Most likely he staid all night at the widow's, and how much 
he might have told us, but did not. We would be only too 
glad to know some of the homely details of Widow Evans' 
housekeeping. What did she give him for breakfast? What 



day of the week did washday fall on? How was the widow 
dressed? Did her hens lay at that time of year and what 
price did she get for her eggs at the store? Was there any 
carpet on the floor? Did the little Evans (if there were any) 
go to school and what were they taught there? — and a hun- 
dred other things he might have recorded. The fact is, the 
golden opportunity of his life came then to our worthy preach- 
er to make himself popular to later generations in giving us 
the information we want instead of telling us whether the 
meetings he attended were pretty much to his satisfaction or 
not — and John Fothergill let that opportunity slip by forever! 
Thomas Chalkley tells us in his Journal that "Next First day 
after the Yearly Meeting, I with several of my neighbors went 
over to a meeting up Pensawken Creek." I won't quote him 
any further, for what follows has no particular reference to us. 
This was on 7th. mo. 24th. 1727. Chalkley lived at Chalkley 
Hall near Frankford and being a seaman a row across the 
Delaware and up the Pensauken was a pleasure trip. Tradi- 
tion says this meeting was held at the house of William Mat- 
lack, the second of the name, who lived about where Charles 
Haines does now. Now Chalkley might just as well have told 
us something more than simply about going to meeting and 



10 

since he has not I propose to "draw on my fancy, where 
facts are not found" and tell about that trip. If my version is 
not acceptable you have the privilege to invent one of your 
own. 

After the meeting was over and the worshippers dispersed, 
Thomas' neighbors having been distributed among them, he 
himself rerr.ained as the guest of William. It was a warm day 
and true to his English instincts Thomas felt that a good wash 
was desirable and so in company with little Jerry, aged eleven 
years, he went down to the spring with one of Ann's home- 
spun towels thrown across his shoulder. Little Jerry carried 
a gourd with a hole cut in the side — we used to call it a cala- 
bash. At the spring the lad filled his calabash with water and 
as Thomas bent over poured it over his head and saw with 
mischievous glee some of it run oown the back of his neck. 
More water followed and our genial skipper puffed and sput- 
tered, as he vigorously rubbed his head and 
rubicund face. His toilet finished, the two, now gcod 

friends went back hand in hand to the house, where a good din- 
ner awaited them. Ann didn't know much about grammar, but 
she did know that a minister agrees with chicken in the plural 
number and she had provided accordingly. There was the 



11 

homespun table-cloth, nice and white, and the pewter platters, 
brightly burnished, and there were the roasted chickens, done 
to a turn and smelling divinely of onion and "yarbs;" then 
there were corn, beans and other garden "sass," and apple 
sauce and toothsome cornbread and two kinds of pie. The 
children, Rebecca, aged 13; Jerry; Rachel, aged 9; Leah, 
aged 7 and Ann, aged 4 — we won't count the baby — waited 
for the second table. The old folks and our friend sat down 
and after a few moments of silence fell to. The children hung 
around the door looking on, listening with close attention to 
the tales of sea-faring life the guest related and occasionally 
casting wistful glances at the fast disappearing chicken; and 
well they might, for the portly Thomas had a good appetite 
and when he had finished and said, "No more, thank thee, I 
have partaken very heartily," there were only two legs, two 
necks and one back-bone minus the Pope's nose, left of all 
the chicken. Then Thomas and William adjourned to the 
shade of a tree and Ann brought a bottle of something that 
looked like Peruna and poured out a stiff glass that I should 
judge measured about four fingers for the sailorman, and a 
trifle smaller quantity for her husband. The two men lighted 
their pipes and soon Ann joined them, bringing her own cutty 



12 

pips from the kitchen. They felt at peace with all the world; 
there was not a single member of the W. C. T. U. for miles 
around to make them afraid. They talked about old times 
when they were young and, of course, they talked about 
George Keith and what a bad man he was. Then William 
pointed out the old graveyard and said that old John Roberts 
was buried there and that he used to live just beyond the 
rising ground over yonder. He told Thomas the story of John's 
depart ng this life, because they took his warming pan away 
from him and Thomas said, "Yes," he had read about it in 
Leslie's "Snake in the Grass." And so the afternoon passed 
and the shadows grew longer and the guest shook hands with 
them and they paitsd. 

But let us go back to facts again — I don't care much for fic- 
tion anyway. 

I can't get old John Fotherglll out of my mind. I feel real 
hurt at him. He ought to have told us something about those 
little Evans and their school life. As it is, all we know about 
education in Burlington County for over thirty years from the 
first settlement can be told in a few minutes. We do not 
know the name of a single school-master during that time. I 
say "master," for there is nothing to show that women ever 



13 

taught school then. 

The proprietors and freeholders it is reasonable to suppose 
felt the importance of education, but there is not a word about 
it in the fundamental laws of the Colony. In 1682 the island 
of Matininunck, in the Delaware, was given by legislative en- 
actment to the town of Burlington, the revenue arising there- 
from to be applied to the "maintaining a school within the 
said Town and in the first and second Tenths," This is all 
the Colonial Legislature did for education up to the time of 
the surrender of the Proprietary Government. Burlington was 
the seat of government and the centre of wealth and refinement 
but it was not until 11th. mo. 7th. 1705, twenty-eight years af- 
ter the first settlement that any reference to schools appears 
upon the Minute Book of Burlington Monthly Meeting. It is 
then noted that some Friends requested the privilege of allow- 
ing a school to be kept in the meeting-house. When Col. 
Morris wrote to the Bishop of London in 1700 that the youth 
of West Jersey were very ignorant, I am afraid he was not so 
very far from the truth. 

Nevertheless there were schools here, as is evidenced by 
the fact that while many of the immigrants could neither read 
nor write, their children born in this country could do so. 



14 

Many of these settlers had located at a considerable distance 
from Bur lingtcn and the infererxe is that schools were not 
confined to the town. 

In 1709 we get a little more light on the subject. On the 
27th. of September of that year, the Rev. John Talbot, minis- 
ter of the Church at Burlington, wrote to the Secretary of the 
S. P. G. In a postscript to his letter he says: "I hope you 
will put the Society in mind of what we have often desired, a 
school master; for there is none in Town nor in all the prov- 
ince that is good; and without, we can't instruct the children 
as they ought to be in the Catechism, for they will not be 
brought to say it in the Church till they have been taught at 
school." 

The social conditions at that time were deplorable. George 
Keith had created a schism in the Society of Friends, and a 
large and influential pait had followed him and established 
the Church at Burlington. The intense bitterness engendered 
by the schism between Churchmen and Quakers lasted almost 
a century. As a witty writer says of the Irish peasantry in 
troublous times — they "hated each other for the love of God." 
Talbot looked upon the Quakers as heathen and worse than 
Indians, and he says so very frankly. It is easy then to read 



15 

between the lines of his letter that the schools were controlled 
by the Quakers. Talbot's suggestion was acted on by the S. 
P. G. and they sent over Rowland Ellis with a salary of £20. 
per annum to establish a school. In 1714 he gave a very 
discouraging account of the condition of things as he found 
them, as he was beset, he says, with "Heathenism, Paganism, 
Quakerism and God knows what." He found about a dozen 
pupils in charge of a man "lame and an object of charity," 
whom he supplanted with some trouble. In 1717 he reports 
having among his patrons, twenty-five "parents of Christian 
families," and ten Quakers. He wrote other letters after that 
and we find that those naughty Quakers almost worried the 
life and soul out of him. 

Of the character of the school master in those early days 
and his fitness for his position intellectually and morally we, 
of course, know nothing, but in succeeding years they number- 
ed among them some of the most abandoned scalawags that 
ever went unhung. They were mostly addicted to drink and 
in some cases it was unsafe to send female children to the 
schools. 

In the instructions of the Court of St. James to Francis 
Bernard in 1758 as governor of New Jersey he was required 



16 

to permit no school teacher to act in that capacity without 
taking out a license, and in a proclamation of Governor Boone 
some two years later he requires "all Magistrates to inform 
themselves sufficiently of the Character of the School Masters 
in that Province; to administer the Oaths to them, and give 
them, under the Hands of two, a Certificate of Approbation, 
by which they may obtain a Licence." It is safe to infer that 
the authorities felt moved to take steps to protect a suffering 
public. 

I wish John Fothergill — but no, I won't talk about him any 
more. 

In the settlement of the estate of James Bircham, of North- 
ampton Township, who died about 1708, there appears a bill, 
dated Dec. 17th. 1705, for boarding and "scowling" his two 
children — bearding £6., schooling £1, per annum. This gives 
us some idea of tuition fees. 

Did they have blackboards and chalk, or slate and pencils? 
I wonder how they managed to teach penmanship and on 
what did the children do their "sums." I hardly think they 
used paper, although I find that some of the youngsters used 
to delight in practicing writing their names on the fly-leaves of 
the old Quaker books of the period. Paper was costly. In 



17 

the inventory of an estate made in 1727, I note that one ream 
of fine paper was appraised at £1. 5 s. and twelve quires of 
coarse at 12 s. Had the children used paper in school then as 
they do now, it would have bankrupted the Colony. 

In 1788 my grandfather taught school at Mount Holly. Had 
he done so thirty or forty years earlier, I should disown him. 
I tell about him, because he entered into agreement with cer- 
tain prominent Friends at that place to teach their children and 
that agreement, still extant, gives us some idea of the craft at 
that time. A few items are of interest. The school is to be 
under the care of Mt. Holly Preparative Meeting — no distinc- 
tion is to be made between rich and poor, nor between Friends 
and others — the teacher is allowed every other Seventh day 
afternoon to attend to his own affairs — he is allowed to attend 
his own Quarterly, Monthly and Mid-week Meeting — he is to 
give the "strictest attention to prevent wicked words and act- 
ions and to restrain vice of every kind — " "none are to be 
admitted that hath the Itch or any other infectious distemper;" 
the employer is to find Firing, Pen, Ink and Paper; lastly, the 
figures are "10 shillings for small children in their letters, 
spelling and reading per Quarter, 15 shillings for writers and 
cypherers, and the customary prices for superior branches of 



18 

learning'." 

Our family always said grandfather was a good man, but 
never got rich at school keeping. 

In our schools of 50 years ago pupils were compelled to 
wrestle ad nauseam with pounds, shillings and pence, in spite 
of the fact that dollars and cents had beeii in use for more 
than fifty years before that and mathematics was the most im- 
portant branch of learning. We were slow to change. This 
state of things reflects the conditions of the past and gives 
us some idea of the school curriculum of the early days. In 
the newspapers of New York and Philadelphia before the 
Revolution we find school advertisements and I note that 
mathematics was a prominent feature then. It is reasonable to 
suppose that it was the case too in the Colonial dawn. Our 
arithmetical text books of to-day are wonderfully simplified, 
but in old times they were difficult to master. Alligation, 
Permutation, Cube Root — and that abomination, Double Rule 
of Three had to be reckoned with. I can imagine those little 
Evans' children sitting in the chimney corner those long win- 
ter nights, spitting on their slates, ( if they had any ) rubbing 
them c'ean with their fingers and "cyphering" such problems 
as this: If 6 men can eat 40 buckwheat cakes, '2 inch thick. 



19 

and 5 inches in diameter, in 15 minutes, how many cakes % 
inch thick and 4 inches in diameter can 2 men and a boy eat in 
the same time? I suppose they got the "answer." 

The spelling of early days was heroic and home-made. The 
story is told that a gentleman in talking with Bishop Meade 
deplored the fact that the girls of Virginia were sowofully de- 
ficient in education. "Never mind," said the Bishop, "our 
boys will never find it out." I think that the average citizen 
here was not aware that his neighbor murdered the King's 
English when he took up his pen. A curious instance of spel- 
ling is to be seen in the inventory of William Heulings, of 
Evesham, made in 1713, where "5 neggoris" were appraised. 
Again in the inventory of Sarah Core, of Evesham, ( who, by 
the way was the daughter of the first John Roberts ) made in 
1728, one "neygoris" was appraised. Samuel Coles, the 2d., 
of Colestown, was one of the appraisers in both cases and I 
am inclined to hold him responsible for this murder. 

The story of the use of spiritous liquors and their influence 
on the moral life of our Colony presents some features worth 
our attention. The baneful effects of drink on the Indians 
were soon made apparent and as early as 1681 efforts were 
made tocorrectthe evil, prompted partly by motives of phil- 



20 

anthropy and partly by the sense of self preservation arising 
from fear of the dangerous consequences that might result 
from it. Accordingly in that year, the Assembly enacted a 
law forbidding the sale of liquor to the Indians under a penal- 
ty of £3. Six months later the act was amended so that the 
informer should get one half the fine and in the case of a 
"foreigner" violating the law the penal sum was fixed at £5. 
Temperance legislation has never proved effectual when not 
backed by public opinion. 

Philanthropy is all right in theory. The old settlers all agreed in 
that, but meantime they were studying the Indian and they 
learned he was not so dangerous after all as they feared. So 
the law was openly violated even by some of our ancestors, 
who were, of course, good men. In 1685 another act of a 
more stringent nature was passed by the Assembly, the pre- 
amble of which recites that previous legislation had proved 
ineffectual. This act makes it an offence to either give or sell 
liquor to negroes or Indians under penalty of £5. It further 
recites "that one creidtable Witness or a probable Circum- 
stance shall be accounted a sufficient Evidence unless the 
Party indicted is free before Sentence to purge himself by his 
Oath or solemn Declaration, that he hath not Transgressed 



21 

this Law directly or indirectly nor that it is violated by his 
Knowledge, Consent ot Procurement." Then follows a cur- 
ious proviso that takes the sting out of the whole act: — 
"Provided always that this Law shall not extend to moderate 
giving to a Negro for necessaiy support of Nature, or to an 
Indian in a fainting Condition (without selling or taking any 
reward for the same. )" 

The pathos of this proviso is exceedingly touching — there is 
nothing to compare with it in modem legislation. How ex- 
ceedingly kind it was in our forefathers to look after the 
"necessary support" of the poor negro's nature and get a 
shilling's worth more work out of him by the expenditure of 
a little Jamaica rum. 

The use of spiritous liquors in the early days of the Colony 
was well nigh universal. They were looked upon as a neces- 
sity and while the evil effects of over indulgence was as patent 
then as now, the moral sense of the community was not arous- 
ed to condemn it. To be occasionally overcome by John 
Barleycorn cast no stigma on any one, no more perhaps than 
to be overcome by eating to-day. It was a matter of course 
and that was all there was of it. The moral standard was low 
and the rise of a healthy public sentiment was very gradual. 



22 

The leaven of reform, was however, beginning to work and it is 
interesting to trace it step by step in the Advices handed 
down by the Yearly Meeting from time to time. The Quakers 
of West New Jersey were an integral part of the Yearly 
Meeting and their history, so far as the question of morals 
and social life are concerned, is largely the history of the Col- 
ony. In 1685 and 1687 Friends were admonished in regard 
to the sale of strong drink to the Indians. In 1706 they were 
cautioned against "sipping and tipplirg," and the evils of 
intemperance were set forth. In 1721 they are again admon- 
ished "to watch against the evil when it begins to prevail 
upon th^m in a general manner." In 1726 they are 
cautioned against "the scandalous practice of giving rum and 
strong drink to excite such as bid at vendues and provoke them 
at every bid to advance the price." In 1736 they are warned 
to be cautious of giving drams to children. In 1743 the 
Second Query reads: "Do Friends keep c'ear of excess 
either in drinking diams or other strong drink?" In 1777 
Friends were exhorted to keep clear of distilling and encour- 
aging the business. Up to this time the abuse of intoxicants 
seems mainly to have been aimed at, but in 1788, in a mem- 
orial from Wilmington Monthly Meeting to the Yearly Meeting, 



23 

a blow was aimed at the use as well as the abuse. 

It is a very common thing to-day to hear people lament 
and ascribe the evils of intemperance to the quality of the 
liquor dispensed. "We can get no pure liquor to-day," say 
they — "it is all drugged, and it is the drugs that do the mis- 
chief. If we only had the good old stuff of our daddies you 
wouldn't hear so much about drunkenness." It may be that 
the liquor of our daddies and our granddaddies may have 
been pure — I am not disposed to question it- — but the drunk 
came just as surely and more people saw snakes and saw them 
oftener than now; but, of course, I am bound to confess there 
were more snakes here in New Jersey then. Drunkenness 
prevailed to a far greater extent and we know that certain 
families in this section in the olden time earned unenviable 
notoriety for being addicted to this vice and I am sorry to say 
that some of them were largely composed of members of the 
Society of Friends. 

John Hunt in his diary deplores the fact that several minis- 
ters of Friends — he even mentions names — men of promise, 
became its victims. An extensive trade was carried on be- 
tween this colony and the West Indies and rum was both 
plentiful and cheap. Inasmuch as there were few if any 



24 

restrictions in the traffic it was easily obtained. The places 
where it was sold were more numerous through the small 
districts in proportion to the population as the means of trans- 
portation were such that more places of entertainment for men 
and beasts were required. 

But I want to say something about the old taverns in 
Moorestown. And by the way that word tavern has been 
allowed to drop into "innocuous desuetude." We have a few 
inns, but everything else of that kind flaunts the high-sounding 
name of hotel. 'Tavern' is a good old word of Latin origin 
that carries us back to the time of the Apostle Paul, who 
stopped at a taberna just before entering Rome. The old- 
fashioned word 'inn' has been resurrected, and the word 
'tavern,' like the dose of ipecac the boy swallowed, is bound 
to come up again. But pardon the digression. 

I have an old surveyor's map of Moorestown, the date of 
which I do not know, but it may be nearly, if not quite, a 
century old. At that time it appears that a public house 
stood where Coles' Hotel now is, that went by the name of 
the Golden Fleece. 

But I want to go further back toward the dawn. I have 
already spoken of Jedidiah Allen and his daughter Esther who 



25 

in 1696 married John Adams, of John and Elizabeth, 
and as stated before gave to the Society of 
Friends the old graveyard across the way. James and Esther 
were both ministers. They had three sons and two daughters, 
the latter were probably born previous to 1703. One of them, 
Elizabeth, married Thomas Moore, who is supposed to have 
been the son of Thomas and Hannah (Smith) Moore, of 
Evesham. 

Thomas kept tavern here in Moorestown. Tradition locates 
the place on Main Street below Union, near where Uriah 
Borton's house stands. Tradition also affirms that his 
neighbors were in the habit of collecting at his hostlery to 
sample his wares and over their cups christened this place 
Moorestown. It is to be regretted that some one else did not 
keep that tavern; it would have saved us the annoyance of 
having letters, express matter and freight side-tracked at 
Morristown so frequently. Thomas Moore died in 1760. 

The other daughter of James and Esther Adams was nam- 
ed Margery and she married Arthur Borradail. They also 
opened a public house here in Moorestown.; the business 
being no doubt profitable. Then one John Riley opened still 
another tavern not far from them. It is not told us whether 



26 

in view of the keen competition that must have ensued the 
rivals cut prices, set oat more appetizing free lunches, or 
watered their rum. Perhaps they did all three. Riley was 
enterprising and he hung out an Anchor for his sign. The 
Borradails were not going to let Riley beat them, so they had 
inscribed on their sign: 

' 'The upstart Anchor doth appear 

But the Ancient Cable is here." 
The verse rhymes all right, but is somewhat lame in its 
poetical feet. I presume it answered the purpose designed — 
the Cable held its customers and Riley may have raised his 
Anchor and made sail for some other port. But of this we 
know not. Here then at the sign of the Cable our good old 
Friends slaked their thirst, swapped horses and discussed 
neighborhood news. 

Of the descendants of Thomas Moore I can learn nothing. 
Arthur Borradail died in 1760, not quite two months before 
Thomas Moore, and I have no doubt their remains rest under 
the sod across the way. Arthur and Margery Borradail' s 
progeny are legion. Dozens of them live in and around 
Moorestown to-day and bear the honored names of Ballinger, 
DeCou, Collins, Conrow, Andrews, Lippincott, Lytle and 



27 

Roberts and not one co uld be tempted to follow the occupa- 
tion of Arthur and Margery. 

But I must come to a close. There are others here to-night 
to be heard. I hoped to have said something about the In- 
dians, the negro s, the doctors, ailments and medicines, the 
fruits, live-stock and many other things, but in building up my 
school house the material collected and I had to use it, so 
that when I came to build my tavern along side of it there was 
no room for anything else and so I close. 



^ 



»l 



1 



a (Rftrt5^f ft Of Colonial 
{Diwfs in gnrlinaton 

founts ra tfi Hi m s 



BY 
DR. A. M. STACKHOUSE 

/ 



^e Settle Press. 
117 W, Main St. Moorestown. N. J. 



• In th;s n 'c, when people of culture are 

jiesicd in Colonial life and the 
any work on the subject is 
I for and read with pleasure. 
.:sc. who is an authority on the 
•ory of West New Jersey, and 
' n of a larf::e number of rare 
: . . .^. ..,. -., JO this subject and many 
s<:arce and lon:-fonjotten pamphlets and 
t'y qualified himtotreatof 
. ■ I , lias just published a pamph- 
^' with the Colonial Times in Bur- 
County. 

Prorr.inent Men 

H The pamphlet treats of some of the early 

settlers in the County and prominent men 

who \ ' ■ here at one time or another, 

'" ■•?» to ihe Revolutionary struggle; 

.mong others, such men as Tho- 

and John Fothergill. Extracts 

n the Jounmls of" old Friends 

vicinity and we are told what 

Fr ' ht and did and how they lived. 

Piracy 

* An account is also given of the prevalence 

!cy in the young Colony anc' of the 

t it met with from some of the people, 

"' the authorities to sup- 

, is said of the settlement 

oi H;: Island, and the platting of the 

infant town. 

Early Ediic:\tion 

•i There is an extensive account of early 
education in Burlington County that cannot 



fail to be of deep interest to those interested 
in tracing the strides education has made in 
New Jersey since its first settlement to the 
present day. Social conditions are incident- 
ally touched upon; the kind of school mas- 
ters who taught the young idea to shoot and 
something of the ammunition provided; what 
the remuneration of the school masters was; 
interesting and quaint facts as to the cost of 
paper in those days; and the provisions for 
schools and pupils. 

Liquor Traffic and Taverns 

H An account is also given of the liquor 
traffic, and the degredation it caused among 
the aborigines and others, with historical 
sketches of the old taverns and those who 
kept them. 

^ This pamphlet adds an important chap- 
ter to our Colonial History. It is printed 
on a high grade paper, bound in an attractive 
heavy paper cover. 

Only 150 Copies have been Printed, 

and each ona is numbered. 

Price 50 Cents Postpaid to any address 

FOR SALE BY 

^e Settle Press, 

117 W. Main Street, Moorestown, New Jersey 

Both Telephones 



g(?.