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brought;" (and indeed I had said so to Col. Appleton, and projected a safe method for it,) and I said to him, “Sir, F think it may." "Well, then," said he, "if it should be attempted, you shall be one that shall bring it up." I replied, "Sir, that is not my business, as you well know; however, if it will be of public service, and you please to command me to it, I will readily venture myself in it, and find a way to do it." "Very well," said he. I then took the opportunity of being alone with him, and said, "Sir, will you please to give me leave to observe some things to you, in which, it seems to me, you are greatly concerned?" He replied, "Yes, sir." I then said, "Sir, you are perfectly well acquainted with the design you came hither upon; you know how much the welfare of your country, and your own honor lays at stake. I am afraid some you are connected with, are not so much concerned for either of them as I could wish. I beseech you, sir, to consider, if you return with the forces (somewhat of whose vigor and bravery you have seen) without doing any thing farther, whether all the fault will not be thrown upon you, as the head of all? As for those gentlemen, who seem to me to oppose your measures, they will feel little or nothing, while I fear your name and honor will be exposed in such a manner, as I shall be exceeding sorry to hear of." He listened to me, hugged me in his arms, and thanked me; and said he would immediately call another council. He did so; and employed my hand in writing letters to the gentlemen that were on board the vessels.
June 3. The council sat, and then concluded to stay, get up the artillery, and attack the fort. The next day, I went on board our ship to get me such accommodations as I wanted, concluding we should remain here at least a month longer. But lo! I was sadly disappointed, and greatly surprised, by the commissary's knocking at the cabin door, before sunrise, and informing me the army was come down in order to embark. For it seems they held another council in the evening, and concluded to burn the houses, and march to the fleet; and they did so; and upon June 5th the whole army embarked.
While we lay at Port Royal, I experienced signal deliverances; one as I was crossing over the river to the General's camp, the fort fired a cannon at me, the ball of which struck pretty near to the canoe. The other was, in order to take a
plan of the fort and avenues to it, I marched alone, well dressed, with a large pistol stuck in my girdle, and pen, ink, and paper in my hands; I marched till I came to the entrance of a straight narrow lane, leading to the fort, it may be rather more that musket shot off. The French, supposing me to be the engineer, fired a cannon at me, the ball of which struck ground so near me, a little to the right, as threw some dirt upon me. I thought with myself, that I had no business here, and retreated slowly backward out of danger; and thank God I escaped what was designed against me.
The fleet sailed away, having sent a packet to the Governor, and June 5th came to anchor in the spacious harbor of Casco Bay. While we lay there letters came from the Governor to Gen. March, ordering him at his peril to return to Port Royal, and telling him the Government were raising forces to send to us.
July 7. Arrived to us at Casco Bay, the Ruth frigate, of 24 guns, Capt. Alden commander, and two companies, Capt. Ephraim Savage, with his 50 men, and Capt. Buckminster, with his 50, which did not near make up the number of our deserters, since we lay at Casco. With them also came three gentlemen, Col. Elisha Hutchinson, (grandfather of the present Lieut. Governor,) Col. Penn Townsend, and Mr. John Leverett, (afterwards President of our college,) and the Rev. Mr. Bridge for their chaplain. The said three gentlemen were deputies from the Government, and superintending counsellors to General March, without whose advice he was to do nothing.
July 11. A number of boats went out this morning to catch lobsters and plaice among the islands, which are many; I went among the rest. One of the boats went near to the shore of one island, and we, who were next to them, were suddenly alarmed with the firing of about twenty small arms, and looking to the island whence the noise came, we saw about forty of the Indians scalping three of the men; the other two men that were in the boat they took prisoners. We were so near to the enemy that their shot would have reached us; but they all immediately betook themselves to their canoes (being about 150 that lay hid in the bushes,) and paddled away for life. The army took the alarm, and in a few minutes the ships' boats, with several hundred men, and General. March at the head of them, were upon the full chase
after the Indians, but could not come up with them. I look upon this as an instance of the care of Divine Providence, and bless God who preserved me from falling into the hands of
July 24. An express from his Excellency to the three Commissioners, ordering the forces to sail for Port Royal; but the mutinous disposition of the men, too much encouraged by officers, with the jealousies and bickerings of the field-officers (excepting Col. Hilton and Col. Wanton,) among themselves, foreboded no good by going.
July 25. The fleet came to sail. Upon our passage Gen. March told me, (upon a signal made by the man-of-war to bear away for Passamaquoddy harbor, and my asking him where we were bound,) "he knew nothing of the matter, nor of our coming to sail, nor where we were bound; the three Commissioners, instead of being a council to him, did what they pleased, gave him their positive orders, which he should always obey." The 30th of July came to anchor in Passamaquoddy, with a fine fair north-west wind, which we
So far my journal goes, which I have made short extracts from. I shall only add what I well remember. We went to Port Royal, landed in an orchard, were ambushed, and lost about fourteen men, drove the enemy before us, returned to the orchard, spent a few days there, and then embarked our men; but about 110 French, mostly privateers, with their captain at their head, (who arrived in our absence,) came and lay hid in the thicket of the woods and underbrush, just without a log fence, where Capt. Talbot, with forty men, were placed as a guard to the orchard, and observed till our men were mostly embarked, and the boats were ashore for the last freight, and Capt. Talbot called off from the guard, and then they broke in upon the orchard, where were only some of the officers, besides Talbot's guard, and a few others, with myself, and poured in their shot upon us, and killed us seven men. I had a shot brushed my wig, and was mercifully preserved. A few boat-loads of men going off immediately put back, and we soon drove them out of the orchard, killed a few of them, desperately wounded the privateer captain, and after that we all embarked, and returned for Boston as fast as we could. When we came home, the General found it to be sadly true, what I suggested to
him at Port Royal. Not only was he reprimanded and slighted by the Government, but despised and insulted as he walked the streets by the populace; the very children, at the sight of him, crying out "wooden swords!" Though he was in himself a valiant man, yet, I think, his capacity was below the post he sustained. he sustained. Nor did I go without my share of obloquy, for a little piece of imprudence while I was absent; for which my pastors treated me cruelly, for reasons best known to themselves; by which my reputation sunk among some people. But the more thinking persons looked upon it as a vile treating of me, and continued their respects to me, especially the excellent Mr. Colman; so that I was almost constantly employed in preaching.
1708. Capt. John Wentworth, of Piscataqua, (afterwards Governor of it,) meeting me in Boston, greatly urged me to go his chaplain, in a ship of 500 tons, 20 guns, and 40 men, to Barbadoes and London. I proposed it to my good father; who told me, if I were not settled in the ministry before this time twelvemonth, he would consent to my taking a voyage. I continued my itinerant preaching; and in the winter of 1708, preaching at Watertown, I returned in the evening to sup at Cambridge with the Rev. Mr. Brattle. While we were at supper, the ringing of the college bell, with the tidings that the college was on fire, was brought to us. I immediately left the table, ran across the pastures to the college, found the area filled with the scholars, (President Leverett at the head of them,) and a multitude of the town's people, staring upon Stoughton Hall, but knew not where the fire was, the smoke pouring out at the eaves from one end of the hall to the other. I stepped to the President and told him I would see where the fire was; stripped off my coat and wig, tied a handkerchief about my head, ran up the stairs of the northerly entry, and discovered where the fire was; ran to the President, and said, "Sir, please to order a ladder at the window of such a chamber, and supply me with water, and I will go in and quench the fire." Accordingly I went into the chamber; it was on fire all round. I ran to the window to open it, but it was fastened so as I could not find how to open it; and I could stay no longer in the chamber than I could hold my breath; the smoke was so exceedingly thick, it would have suffocated me to have drawn a breath. But observing the bulk of the fire was at the bed, (for while
the President and scholars were at prayers in Harvard Hall, a spark, as it seemed, had snapped from the hearth, and set fire to the calico curtains.) I ran and told the President to order somebody to cut up the floor over the bed, and pour water till they had extinguished the fire there. He did so; and then we soon mastered the fire. The President was pleased to observe upon it, if I had not providentially been there, the college had been consumed.
The summer of 1709 arrived, and I not settled, when meeting Capt. Wentworth at Boston, he again urged me to take the same voyage with him, he last year proposed. I obtained my good father's consent, and we sailed from Nantasket Road, July 9, 1709, and arrived with an easy, comfortable passage, in one and twenty days, at Barbadoes. As we were running down the latitude, a seeker bore down upon us, fell into our wake, and chased us with all the sail he could make; but our ship (the Lusitania) being a prime sailer, kept her distance. Capt. Wentworth got his ship ready, kept his course steadily, and before noon we raised the island, and came to anchor before Bridgetown in the afternoon. Thus kind Providence preserved us. There was no congregation of Dissenters in this place; but I constantly attended public worship at church. A small number of considerable and valuable gentlemen, knowing I was a preacher, entreated me to entertain them upon a Lord's day; but I told them, I should not be here above two Sabbaths more, and I thought it would not be prudence to give any disturbance to the Episcopal clergy for so little a time, and refused their offer. While I was here, I had some acquaintance with several of the clergy. Mr. Beresford, the chief minister upon the island, kindly invited me to dine with him, and entertained me with great civility. He was a gentleman of considerable learning, sobriety, and virtue.
After about five weeks stay at Barbadoes, we set sail under the convoy of Commodore Logg in the Weymouth, and Capt. Norborough in the Lark, men-of-war, with about sixty sail, some bound for North America, but mostly for London. The day after we sailed came on a violent storm, something of a hurricane, the strength of which lasted about eight hours, when we could not hear one another speak upon deck, without turning our face to the ear of the man we spoke to, neither could we put a light into the poop lantern without a man