Ruth Bissell Cowing Diary Transcript 1808-1834 (PEO.41C)

Transcription of the 1808-1834 diary of Ruth Bissell Cowing

Diary of Ruth Bissell Cowing, Ancestor of Ann Conaway of Sargentville

Transcript of the Diary of Ruth Bissell Cowing


Wednesday Feb. 21  1810

Bless the Lord O my Soul & forget not his goodness to thee.  Surely his goodness has followed me all the days of my life.. but in a particular manner I experienced it on the evening of the 6th of this month when my body lay racked with pain  Gods mercy was extended & I was delivered of a son.  & am now so far recovered as to be able to record it this day. O may I never forget the goodness of God to me and may the remainder of my days be spent in his service.  I think (if not deceived) I was brought in that trying hour to give up all to God  let him do as he was pleased.  Just in the last distressing hour the Lord displayed delivering power.  The mount of danger is the place Where we will see surprising grace.  God hath been pleased to entrust me together with my companion with the care of this little babe & how shall we train it up without his assistance  methinks I feel the need of it & O may he be pleased to grant it.  How trifling is the care of the baby when compared to that of the soul.  O cutting thought that I must be the means of its being born for a miserable Eternity.  But I must leave that with him that will do justice to all his creatures.

Sabbath 25th

I think my bodily health increases daily & may I have a heart of gratitude to God for it. I am fearful that I shall be like the lepers represented in the Scriptures that were cleansed but returned not to give God the glory.  Although my life has been spared through a trying scene yet Death is still before me & I must resign when it pleaseth God to call for me.  dying will be but going home to the righteous, their house and company are above, & when they have sweet foretastes of the happiness reserved for them I believe this world looks like a prison to them…

Sabbath April 22

It is a long time since I have taken my pen to write& should I now attempt a scetch of my past thoughts & life methinks it would be no ways like the life my maker requires of me.  the world and its objects have to large a share in my heart my little babe daily steals my affections & if God should snatch him from my bosom I must own it to be just though it would be a cutting stroke.  He was not given me to worship,  for God requires my heart in preference to all Earthly objects.  Attended meeting this day & heard an arousing discourse from Mr. Todd wherein was surveyed the necessity of seeking for salvation while the door of Mercy is open.

Sabbath May 6th

Have spent the day at home there being no preaching & how have I spent it?  I may answer in no measure as I aught.  The Sabbath is set apart as a day of rest to the body in order that our that our minds may be more in the service of the Lord. But is this the case with me.  is my mind at rest with God?  Is my art devastated to his service?  Methinks I feel condemned knowing that my heart is to strongly glued to this world  when I have a sense of my wicked heart it appears that I am the most ungrateful of all human beings  that I who have had such repeated blessings bestowed on me & in addition to all have been restored to health when I was brought to the borders of the grave & now spend my speared life so little in the service of him that hath done such great things for me is astonishing to men and angels… O that I could spend each moment as it passes in a manner that if the next should summon me away I could meet the approbation of my Judge..but alas! My case is gone to all Eternity unless Christ is my Advocate to plead my cause in the trying day…   last week, Sept 26 the aged Mr. Bryant was summoned from the world to hear his final sentence in the world of spirits & yesterday heard that the aged Mr. Hamilton has likewise departed…

Fryday June 22nd

O wicked wandering heart & vain deluding world wither wilt thou lead me? did I but harken to the sweet whisper of the heavenly dove surely I should not feel this distance from God that I do at present for he would gently lead me on to the enjoyment of my Saviour while the world & the things of it will surely deprive me of it.  Yet amidst all my gloomy feelings I have some hopes of a returning Spring for Christ hath said that they that seek me shall find me  surely if I know my heart I have desires to God that he would return & bless me with his presence   how vain and empty are all the things here below,, there is nothing that can satisfy the immortal soul short of the love of God.

Sabbath August 19

After a neglect of nearly two months I again take my pen & what have I to record..surely I might fill sheets of paper in recording the good and mercy of God to me. & my ingratitude and unthankful feelings to him.  I think I am in some measure sensible of what I deserve at the hands of a holy God that makes no allowance for sin.  & yet contrary to to my deserts I am blest with life, health peace and plenty while others are deprived.  On July the 9th the wife of Mr. Peter Niles departed this life after a lingering illness of many months.  Sickness and Death are daily spreading around us & may I be prepared if called to experience either.  On Saturday the 11 of this month the barn of Mrs. Bela Stetson was struck with lightning & in a short time consumed to ashes

Oct 25th  Thursday

My life is still preserved while others are cut off. On Wednesday the 10 Miss Sarah Praggers departed this life after a short illness of three days & on Wednesday the 17 Mrs. Lydia Buck, wife of Mr. Jesse Buck bid a long farewell to friends and took her flight into the unknown world of Spirits. Are not these things calculated to arouse the minds of the living that we may all be prepared for the like scene when called to experience it.  But O the stupidity of Mortals! Unless the Lord apply it with furvor to our hearts we still remain careless?…  O may I & all others make a right improvement of these providences & no longer remain careless & stupid under the dealings of God.

Fryday eve Dec 14th

Tired of my wicked heart and quite weary of this vain world  ___ would I fly to a more peaceful time where no troubles can ever come, but what is the foundation of my trouble here & whether can I go that I may be freed from it.. I answer that I believe Sin to be the cause of all the trouble that I experience & so long as Sin remains in me I can never enter those blessed gates above where Sin can never come..  but will not Christ cleanse the Soul from Sin in that truly desires it,  if so then if my desires are sincere may I not hope that in his own time he will accomplish it.  I sometimes fear that I am deceiving myself & and am hoping and wishing for that happiness that I shall never attain.  But if I am forever banished from the presence of God I must bless him for his goodness to me thus far & own him to be just in my future punishment.  O may I inquire into the state of my Soul  was there ever a child of God suffered to stay at the distance  from him that I feel at present. By distance I mean sensible enjoyment.  I hope that I am not without true desires that he would bless me again with his presence as n times past but in justice God sees fit to withhold it from me,,  Will God forever cast me off His promise ever fail Has he forgot his kind ___ Shall anger still prevail

Sabbath Dec 31

This day the events of the present year will close & this day will also close time with many of my Mortals.  & O if it should close time for me what would my situation be, if unreconciled to God it would be miserable indeed!   I find my heart unreconciled to the dealings of God with me n this world.  I am in an unhappy state of mind-therefore there can be no true happiness living nor dying short of true reconciliation.  I am sensible that at present I do not possess it but if I am not deceived I think I ling for it at times more than from Earthly riches.  I know that God orders all things for the good of his creatures and I wish him not to change in his dealing but that he would enable me to say from the heart the will of the Lord be done.  If my life is spared to the beginning of a new year may I begin with new resolutions to spend it more in the service of God than ever yet I have done & O may I have the assistance of God to put my resolves in practice without which I shall surely come short.


Sabbath Day Jan 6th 1811

The year rolls round and steals the breath that first it gave What er we do what er we be We are traveling to the grave.   since writing have been called to sympathize with my Sister Taylor on the death of her youngest child who expired on Sunday the 30 of Dec after a short illness of 18 hours  they had been making preparations for a party of young people to attend a ball on the beginning of this new year—but quite contrary to their calculations on that day they were called to commit their little babe to the dust.  Thus we see that man may appoint but God can disappoint.  Surely it is a loud call to them to set their house in order and prepare themselves for the like event when called to experience Deaths fatal arrows daily fly  And sprightly youth like hoary age die.  Earth is a dark and tiresome place to those that wish to live in conformity to the commands of Christ for while in this world we sin continually and & certainly while we Sin there can be no complete conformity… I can see nothing but sin & unconformity in my heart & am astonished at the patience of God with me.

Sabbath March 3rd

The rolling sun has brought around the beginning of the spring but I fear my Soul is yet in a winter state. O when will the day- springing from on high shine unto my Soul and chase away these clouds that have hung so long over my mind.  In vain I search for happiness in the creature & in created objects all are empty, fleeting & unsatisfying in themselves and at times I have a realizing sense of it.  I trust I know where true happiness is to be found ever in Christ Jesus the Lord of Glory.  But I confess I have grieved the Spirit of God I have not hearkened to the sweet whispers of the heavenly dove that hath been calling me to return unto God from whom I have strayed.  Returning Prodigals will find “ Tho they are base their Father’s kind” could I but feel a truly pentinent heart & return aright unto God I believe he would be willing to receive me and manifest his love to me as in times past.  On Monday the 18th of Feb.  Lydia one of the youngest children of Mr. Thrasher departed this life & left her mate together with other friends to mourn her loss.

June 2nd Sabbath Day

I have been thinking why it is that I from time to time so long neglect my pen—I conclude it is because I do not feel that enjoyments in in the things of religion that I did when I oftener employed it. When my mind is raised above the things of time & I can write of the enjoyment of the heavenly events that I

experience then my pen can flow swiftly  but to write of my coldness and stupidity is no pleasing task.  I think I am in some measure sensible of my sin and guilt before God & can say like ___ against thee & thee only have I sinned  being sensible that my sin against God far exceeds that against my fellow Mortals.  I am blessed with everything that is needful in this world but alas how miserable is my state if I have nothing but this world for my portion..  I daily see the emptiness of it and how incapable it is  satisfying the desires of an immortal Siul yet there is a secret something that can calm the troubled mind which is better felt than expressed.  The pleasing hope of being received to you brought world of happiness and of being reconciled to an unseen God when done with this world of trouble, gives me more joy than the possession of all this world & the approbation of the Mortals that inhabit it.   When shall I be delivered from this vain world of sin And with my blessed Jesus ___ endless pleasures in

Sunday July 7th

I took a walk this day over the fields around & find that the earth in a very dry & thirsty situation for want of the natural rain from heaven thus methinks my soul is in a thirsty state for the most part of my time yet now and then a sweet drought from the fountain of living waters cheers soul and all is calm and serene.  Last night I was reading in the word of God and surely I was unable to claim the promises as mine.  The Saviours love shone in every word & O how vile did I appear in mine own eyes.  Methinks I am nothing and less than nothing in the eyes of a holy God that makes no allowances for sin.  How then can he bestow his love on me who am all sin & pollution.  It is only in ___ things my glorious redeemer that I long for pardon & receive these blessings

Sabbath Oct. 6th 1811

I again take my pen to write the feelings of my mind but should I attempt to write them all time paper would fail me.  since writing I have experienced a variety of feelings some of them pleasing others very disagreeable to my natural inclinations  we received a letter from my oldest brother Sep 19th which informed us that he parted with his only child by Death on the 12 of said month, undoubtably it was a cutting stroke for them to see their little babe in the agonies of death but gods time to take it was surely the best time and I hope they may be enabled to say from the heart the will of the Lord be done.  Death is a scene that we must all pass through sooner or later and surely those that experience it in infancy do surely escape the troubles of life if no more  that those of this life be they ever so many & great is nothing in comparison to escaping those of a long and miserable Eternity…  I know not the time of my exit but something within stimulates me to think it to be very mean and for the most part of my time when the thought dwells hardest on my mind I feel in a great measure reconciled that it should take place—but I sometimes fear that my reconciliation procedes from wrong motives.  Is it because I wish to freed from the troubles of this life without anything further in view  sometimes no doubt this is the case but if I am not deceived I think I at times long to freed from this body that I may be holy even as God is holy and I am sensible this can never be the case while I live in this body of sin.  I am prone to sin and I sometimes feel it to be my greatest grief and burden.  There are many objects in this world that attaches me to it strongly but I think I can leave them all in the hands of God believing he can provide for & take care of them when I am no more.   I have had many thought in my life that time with me was short but I think never had any like those that I have of late experienced   I can think of it with calmness & sometimes long that it may take place.  All my hopes of happiness depend on the intercession of Christ for I am sensible if he do not intercede for me before God my case is gone to all Eternity  it is only when I can realize that my peace is made with God that I can look into Eternity with composure.  O glorious hour O blest abode I shall be near and like my God but be my days longer or shorter I wish to be resigned to the will of God & should he spare me to live in this world enable to live more to his glory than even yet I have done.

Dec 13th Fryday eve

Have been teased and perplexed with the cares of this life to an uncommon degree for some tome past and surely my own experience will teach me the impossibility of finding happiness in things below the Sun- I long that my mind may be free from these clays of the flesh and enjoy without interruption that inward peace that I think I have at time experienced that this world does not afford.  What trying scenes more await me in this life I know not but of one I am certain & how soon I shall be called to experience it God only knows- I mean that of passing from this world to the world of spirits  this will be a trying scene to both Soul & Body- this body that the soul inhabits cannot bear the shock it will tatter and fall to the ground  the Soul will then come to the trial if Christ intends for it the second Death can have no power over it, but if not gone to all Eternity.  Methinks I at times have a great sense of my foundation for happiness depending on Christ alone  I renounce all goodness of my own & depend alone on him for justification.  But can so vile a sinner find a just and holy God so kind and can I trust his grace  I am sensible if God casts me off he will do no more than what I deserve yet he can pardon tho my guilt be great through my redeemers name.


March 1st 1812

I am again permitted to take my pen to record the goodness of God to me. on the 30th of last Jan I was again delivered of a son and am now in a great measure restored to my usual state of health  I think I feel like one that has been brought together with my husband to the very borders of the grave and are now afraid to live a little longer in this world  as he was riding in Worthington on the 5th of Feb his horse stumbled & threw him & hurt him to that degree that he was not able to return home until the next day and if I ever had a sense of the goodness of God to me it was then when we were both confined in one room to our beds  I could lie & meditate on his goodness & I hope with a thankful heart in sparing us both to live while others were cut off & I then thought I could say God is the Lord notwithstanding what he hath done unto me.  O that we may live to the glory of him who hath done such great things for us & remember that we have no moments to spend in vanity but that each moment should spent in preparing for a future state.

March 22nd

We are daily reminded of our own mortality in the deaths of our fellow mortals  amongst the number of those that fall victim to the grim tyrant is Mrs. Graves who departed this this life yesterday morn after a lingering illness of many months-  O how little part of my time do I realize that the cold grave will soon be my home. I hear of the deaths of others & see their bodied committed to the grave. But alas! My outward actions witness against me that it makes but little impression on my mind.  I feel sensible that I deserve the chastising hand of God laid upon me for negligence & unthankfulness   my daily prayer to God is comprehended in these fine records- Lord make me to be as thou wouldest have me to be.  I feel that my heart is not right with God I feel to murmmer many times & I fear at all times my heart is to strongly glued to the things of the world.  Yet amidst all my wandering thoughts I am blest with a great sense of the goodness of God to me, that I have my health, reason & the comforts of this life together with other innumerable blessings & others far better than I deprived, I confess with shame that I am one of the vilest of the vile that I live no more deserving these favors- I am astonished many times that my heart is not every moment taken up in meditation on those things.  Look how I grovel here below Fond of these trifling toys yet surely I have still greater reason for joy & thankfulness when I consider the glorious plan of Mans redemption the cheering hope of being received to your bright world of happiness when done with this world of trouble gives more peace to the mind than I can describe with my pen.  Happy songsters when shall I your chorus join!  Let cares like a wild deluge come And storms of Sorrow fall May I but safely reach my home My God my heaven my all.

Sabbath May 24th

I have just returned from attending an divine worship and may I inquire have I worshipped that God that requires those that worship him to do it in spirit & in truth.   Methinks my heart condemns me for my many wandering thoughts on other objects when I attended the worship of the supreme either in a publick or private manner  we cannot bear to be treated with indifference by our Earthly friends and especially by those that profess great Friendship & shall the professed Friends of Jesus ___

Ruth Cowing May 24, 1812

To worship him with coldness & think that he will not regard it no my heart tells me differently and I am convinced he is not pleased with the frame of mind that I am in general of late.  If I at any time attempt to call in my wandering thought & place them on things that concern my future state some evil thoughts will be suggested like person whispering in my ear and break the chain of my meditation.  You that love the Lord indeed Tell me is it thus with you  there has been a number of deaths within the circle of my acquaintances of late amongst the rest are Mrs. Metcalf, wife of Mr. El Metcalf who departed this life May 5th & Mrs. Wright & Mr. Wit of Chester the first expired on the 10th and the other on the 13th and on the 14th the funeral of both was attended & they committed to the grave  on Thursday the 21st the son of Mr. Noah Haden was carried to his long home after a lingering ___ of many months  Deaths fatal arrows daily fly ___.

Sabbath Sept. 6th 1812

Many days and weeks have passed since I have recorded any of the transactions of my life & now were I to record all it would be for the most part scenes of confusion…I have been perplexed with worldly cares and concerns to an uncommon degree the Summer past & have felt sometimes like one weary of the world a life of retirement suits me far better than noise and confusion  on the 20th of August I rode to Worthington called to see Mrs. Fuller not knowing that she was more unwell than common  I was surprised to find her confined to her bed and in a very weak state of body & and in great distress of mind apprehending she was near the Eternal world & to use her own words no God to appear for her and no comfort could she find to her Soul, it was truly affecting to see her in that situation but her case was beyond the reach of Mortals the arm of God alone could deliver her  She continued to languish until Tuesday the 1st Sept. when exhausted nature quited and her Spirit took its flight.  I was told that she manifested a degree of calmness before she expired & said she was resigned to Death if it was God’s will- her funeral was attended the following day & the institution of baptism administered to her youngest child- thus she has gone and left us never more to return & we that survive must soon follow her     the dark and narrow grave must soon be our lodging  and the world of spirits our home….

Nov 27th 1812

Pensive Melancholy & alone I take my pen to divert my mind- our family have retired to rest & my husband is absent on a journey and not expected before the coming week if ever.  Perhaps we have parted for this work & never more to meet until we meet in Eternity   O must this be the stroke that will drive me home to God from whom I have revolted- O cutting thought to flesh to think of experiencing it while yet I know not that it is true  then what anguish will tear my heart should I be called to experience it- O may I be prepared for all events that await me & be enabled to to bless the hand that doth chastise let it come in what way it seemeth him best.

Tuesday eve

Still I continue my tale of solitude  no earthly companion to cheer my gloomy hours & no  sweet whispers from the heavenly dove to whisper peace to my soul..  I feel like a child at a distance from its fathers house & I think I have long prayed that I may be brought back by tender love, or by the rod.  My heart surely choose the first yet if God sees fit to inflict the second may I be submissive & learn obedience by the things that I suffer.  I can look back to days past and gone when I was submissive to the will of God in everything (so far as I was acquainted with my heart) and wished him to use me as an instrument for his glory through life although ever so crossing to my natural inclinations  now many things that I experience cross my natural feelings yet it may be for the glory of God tho hid from my knowledge in this world   then let me submit with patience to those troubles that I cannot avail in my journey through life & look forward in the joyful hope that I shall one day be freed from them all & gain the company of all those above who sing without interruption the sound of Moses and the Lamb  O may I who am but dust and ashes indulge the hope of sharing the blessings of the heavenly world.

Sabbath Dec 27 1812

The present year is drawing to a close soon will open the scenes of a new, many have slept the sleep of Death the present year & opened their eyes in a new and unknown world.  Among the rest is Mr. Ehe Metcalf who was well on the morn of the 4th of this month and drpt at his own door & carried in a lifeless corpse  his remains were committed to the cold and silent grave the Monday following   he has

left a wife whom   he joined hands with but the Tuesday before his death & nine children to mourn their loss.


January 29th 1813

For the first time since the beginning of this new year I now take my pen to write & perhaps it may be the last… sickness and Death are spreading fast in the land and short is the warning given before Mortals are hurried to their long home.  Could we have the evidence for all, that they make a happy exchange that we have for the amiable Sarah Benjamin who departed this life Wednesday Morn we should have no reason to wish them back again- but alas!  I fear that many die & leave no hope behind

Sabbath March 7th

Have just heard of the death of Mr. French of Chester who departed this life last eve after a short illness of a few hours- I think this a new call to all who hear of it to be also ready for we no not when the son of man cometh!!  We must all bow to the king of terrors sooner or later and the present appearance of our country seems to threaten destruction to many of us speedily-  hardly a day passes but we hear of Death of some one around us  May I be well prepared to go When I the summons hear

Fryday 12

Death, Death, is the subject that presents continually to employ my pen.  8 deaths I have heard in the course of the week in this & the adjacent town among the rest was Mrs Fish a kind & agreeable woman who expired last Sabbath Morn and was committed to the grave the Tuesday Following-  a Sermon was delivered by Mr. Todd from God “For I know that he will bring me down to the grave & the house appointed for all ___  is it true that I know as she did that I must be brought down to the grave then why do I not live more like a dying creature & like one bound to Eternity.  O how trifling are these empty things of time when rightly considered & how important those of a future state  I want more to realize the shortness of time than I do for whether I live longer or shorter it matters not so much as to be prepared when called for.  The longest live is but a span.

April 4th

There has numbers been committed to the grave since I have written amongst the rest  Mrs. Lydia Cowing who departed last Monday P.M. & Mrs. Mary Daniels the Wednesday following-on Thursday Mr. Jonathan Bisbe                   Fryday while the people were attending the funeral of Mrs. Daniels one of her little twin babes expired & was committed to the grave with its departed mother & on the Sabbath following the other infant followed its departed mate.

Thursday eve May 20th

This beautiful moonshiney night I walked out and sat me down gazing on the moon and stars    I gazed and meditated till I was lost in thought-where thought I shall I be when I leave this body?  Shall I be higher than yonder stars & brighter far than they?  Or shall I be eternally sinking without one gleam of hope dawning on my Soul… O my soul these are truths of eternal importance & I this moment feel them to be so… one or the other will certainly be my fate as certain as I now live so certain it is that I must die and enter the Eternal world.  But says some there is no Eternal world for man- if so what means this restless, uneasy mind in man that will not, cannot, be satisfied with what this world affords our frame of mind teaches one immortality, these unbounded desires will be satisfied with nothing short of God himself & O how little do we know of him while dwelling in the house of clay.  Then may we not hope that the time will come when we shall have more perfect knowledge & these restless desires completely satisfied. Well the kind minute shall appear When we shall leave these bodys here These clogs of clay & mount on high To gain the song above the sky.   O did others see my wicked heart in the light that I sometimes see it.  They would surely with me think that I should sing the highest note of praise if I am even admitted within the gates of the new Jerusalem.

Death is continually before my eyes & why does it so closely follow me in all my meditations if not about quickly to seize upon me   I know that should I live to the common age of man it will be but a short time & shorter than that I may be called for in a day or an hour.  Then if suddenly called for do I die in peace with God & all mankind  I trust that God by his Spirit has reconciled me to himself & when the Spirit of God reigns in my heart I feel peace with my Fellow Mortals.  I am prone to do evil & that continually & I hope that wherein I offend God or man I shall meet with forgiveness.  On Wednesday the 12th of this month I heard of the exit of Mrs. Chiles of Worthington a member of the church here below & I trust is now singing praises in the church above.

Saturday night May 29th

Darkness and silence reign around me outwardly but my mind is not silent & my meditations are mostly upon my future state.  Each day events take place that remind me of my own mortality  on Monday last Electa Anderson bade adieu to Parents & Friends & took her flight into an unknown world.   She is gone that’s all we know: we know not how or where or how the unbodied Soul doth fare O how little do we know of that future world that we must soon, very soon be an inhabitant of

July 8th

On the 18th of June I set out in company with my father to visit Sister Robinson  found her in a poor state of health & surrounded like the rest of us with the perplexities and troubles of life.  I am sometimes ready to think that I have an uncommon share of the perplexities (but not solid troubles) of life, then again I take a view of my Fellow creatures & I conclude my share to be small in comparison with what others experience.  I fear that my troubles do not work a good effect on my heart and-instead of leading me to bear them with patience and seek for more solid happiness in things of another world   I am too often repining on my heart & how a life of sin & vanity before my fellow mortals.

Sabbath August 29th

Have just parted with my Dear cousin Clarisa Olcott & I can truly say with a heavy heart-Although the natural relation betwixt us is distant, yet I trust there is a heavenly relation that units us more strongly than the nearest of the earthly kind.  Earthly connections if they extend no farther will cease with life but when souls are alike united to Christ their love Friendship & union exists to all Eternity   this ife is a dream an empty show as to the appearance of things as they pass before us  our dear friends are with us one moment and perhaps the next parted from us  never more to meet in this world   so in a like manner pass the lives of mortals.  We may be well and a breathless corpse in an hour hurried to the grave our long home and never seen any more.  But O what happy meeting to all that love the Lord beyond the grave then all will be alike related & united and spend an Eternity (not in tears at the thought of parting but forever rejoicing & singing praises to him that loved & redeemed & brought them together to dwell with him.

October 24th

Have neglected writing for some time past, partly for want of a convenient opportunity, but more for the want of some pleasing experiences to record-when I write my pen must keep pace with my mind, & O what a wrangling mind I have had of late  so unreconciled have I been with the dealings of God that I have been ready to conclude that I never more should enjoy that heavenly peace that flows from a heart truly humbled and subjected.  Have I ever drunk of that living water that Christ told his disciples should be in them a well of water springing up unto everlasting life.  If I have why is it so dryed up as it appears to me to be at the present   O that my heart could be truly subjected to every dispensation of God then would the spring again rise & flow again & I should again enjoy peace of mind as in former days,  have just heard of the exit of Martin Buck who expired in a distant land far from parents & Friends.

Fryday Nov. 12

Since writing have heard of sudden and surprising deaths of David Rude of Ashfield who expired on Saturday last & Mr. Jeremy Kinney of Worthington on the Sabbath following.  The first a sprightly active youth cut down in the morning of his days while his heart no doubt was exulting in the pleasing hopes of soon joining hands with the amiable girl he had chosen as a partner for his future life- but he has left her ere the happy moment arrived disconsolate to mourn her loss & see the end of the highest human felicity- the other, a man in the prime of life who has lived many a year in the marriage relation & has been making preparations to remove his wife & 7 children to a far distant country there to spend the remainder of their days- but his plans are defeated- himself has taken a long of my to the world of spirits his wife & children left to shift in the world without a husband and father to assist them  methinks I am in a poor situation of mind at the present should I be called to experience such trying scenes, I fear I could not meet the Lord in his providence and say that all is well.  But he can enable me to say it from the heart in all his dispensations whether merciful or afflictive & if I know my heart it is my desire the he would “ humble yourself under the mighty hand of God & he will exalt you in due time? Are words that have sounded of late in my ear

December 26th 1813

Sabbath August 29th

Have just parted with my Dear cousin Clarisa Olcott & I can truly say with a heavy heart-Although the natural relation betwixt us is distant, yet I trust there is a heavenly relation that units us more strongly than the nearest of the earthly kind.  Earthly connections if they extend no farther will cease with life but when souls are alike united to Christ their love Friendship & union exists to all Eternity   this ife is a dream an empty show as to the appearance of things as they pass before us  our dear friends are with us one moment and perhaps the next parted from us  never more to meet in this world   so in a like manner pass the lives of mortals.  We may be well and a breathless corpse in an hour hurried to the grave our long home and never seen any more.  But O what happy meeting to all that love the Lord beyond the grave then all will be alike related & united and spend an Eternity (not in tears at the thought of parting but forever rejoicing & singing praises to him that loved & redeemed & brought them together to dwell with him.

October 24th

Have neglected writing for some time past, partly for want of a convenient opportunity, but more for the want of some pleasing experiences to record-when I write my pen must keep pace with my mind, & O what a wrangling mind I have had of late  so unreconciled have I been with the dealings of God that I have been ready to conclude that I never more should enjoy that heavenly peace that flows from a heart truly humbled and subjected.  Have I ever drunk of that living water that Christ told his disciples should be in them a well of water springing up unto everlasting life.  If I have why is it so dryed up as it appears to me to be at the present   O that my heart could be truly subjected to every dispensation of God then would the spring again rise & flow again & I should again enjoy peace of mind as in former days,  have just heard of the exit of Martin Buck who expired in a distant land far from parents & Friends.

Fryday Nov. 12

Since writing have heard of sudden and surprising deaths of David Rude of Ashfield who expired on Saturday last & Mr. Jeremy Kinney of Worthington on the Sabbath following.  The first a sprightly active youth cut down in the morning of his days while his heart no doubt was exulting in the pleasing hopes of soon joining hands with the amiable girl he had chosen as a partner for his future life- but he has left her ere the happy moment arrived disconsolate to mourn her loss & see the end of the highest human felicity- the other, a man in the prime of life who has lived many a year in the marriage relation & has been making preparations to remove his wife & 7 children to a far distant country there to spend the remainder of their days- but his plans are defeated- himself has taken a long of my to the world of spirits his wife & children left to shift in the world without a husband and father to assist them  methinks I am in a poor situation of mind at the present should I be called to experience such trying scenes, I fear I could not meet the Lord in his providence and say that all is well.  But he can enable me to say it from the heart in all his dispensations whether merciful or afflictive & if I know my heart it is my desire the he would “ humble yourself under the mighty hand of God & he will exalt you in due time? Are words that have sounded of late in my ear

December 26th 1813

The present year is drawing to a close my life like the year is also drawing to a close& do I realize it? I fear I do not as I aught for surely, I do not live each day like one bound to the Eternal world- I have at times great sense of my sin & pollution of heart & desires after greater conformity to the will of God & more manifestations of his divine presence, but alas! The Lord for wise ends sees fit to deny me at present my request.  I am sensible it is all just & right yet if I finish I hope I shall perish begging for mercy  God be merciful to me a sinner.  Ruth Cowen


Sabbath eve Jan. 8 1814

I am spared to date the beginning of a new year & whilst others sleep in dust I live to record their deaths.  On the morn of the 27th of Dec. Mrs. Kendall an amiable woman in this neighborhood expires after a short but distressing illness.  She has left 5 children to feel the loss of a tender mother who 8 months ago experienced the like in the death of their father. Yong and helpless as they are may they have kind friends guide them in their infant state & may God be a better parent & friend than those they have lost.  A sermon was delivered on Wednesday following by Mr. Todd from there words “be ye likewise ready also” he described that readiness as consisting in vital union to Christ by the Soul’s being made sensible of its sin & pollution & falling at the feet of Jesus crying for, & obtaining mercy.  I then thought as he described it I could say from the heart I had experienced it & when I realize anything of my future state it is of the like kind now, I know where my just deserts would land me but my heart crys Lord have mercy & spare me tho’ my quilt be great for the Redeemers name-  And can so vile a sinner find A just and holy God so kind And can I trust his grace, yes my redeemer lives he lives joy to my soul my hope ___ I hope to see his smiling face.

Sabbath March 20th

O miracle of divine goodness that I am spared to live while others all around me are cut down – on the 27th of Feb the aged Mrs. Jeslyn was committed to the grave- on Sabbath March 6th a child of Mrs. Jones, on Tuesday 8th Dec. David Porter expired  on Fryday 11 Mr. Jabes Barlett  on Monday 14 Mr. Thomas Patch & on Fryday 18 Mrs. Kinney wife of Mr. Abner Kinney and this day her remains are carried to Worthington to be committed to the silent grave  last Sabbath she was well & attended the funeral of Mr. Bartlett was taken ill on Thursday & expired on Fryday- a short but distressing sickness terminated her days & her spirit has taken its flight-  Her work is done her race is run We trust she is on the heavenly shore   did I know certainly & realize that in one week I should be a breathless corpse what would my meditations be- O my soul I see thy sins to many & greatly aggravated how shall I appear before God in my sin and pollution  I must cry guilty unclean before thee- but is there no balm in Gilead is there no physician there to heal and clothe the polluted soul- yes Jesus my great high priest has dyed I seek no sacrifice beside His blood did once for all atone And now it pleads before the throne   And may I humbly hope he will plead for me in that trying hour & clothe me with his righteousness- And lest the shadow of a spot Should on my soul be found He took the robe the Saviour  And wrapt me all around

Sabbath April 18th

“For it is appointed unto men once to die” how fast are these words fulfilling at the present in our neighborhood  4 deaths in the short space of one mile has taken place in 2 weeks-On Sabbath eve March 25th Mrs. Phinney expired on Sabbath April 3 an infant child of Mr. Eben Cole on Wednesday eve 6th Mr. Phinney followed his departed wife that he followed to the grave but a week before. & on Fryday eve 15th the wife of Mr. Eben Cole & this day her remains are to be laid by the side of her little babe- my own health is very poor what the event will be I know not- I has a very distressed night Wednesday night my husband talked of going on a short journey the next morn I told him I was fearful that I should not live until his return he said if I thought so he would by no means go & about concluded to stay, as we sat talking on the subject this verse in the Divine Psalms entered my mind “Trust in the Lord forever trust And banish all your fears Strength in the Lord Jehovah dwells Eternal as his years”   these words in a great measure calmed my mind that I told him I was willing he should go, he accordingly left me & has not yet returned- whether I shall ever behold his face in the land of the living I know not yet surely it will afford comfort to the survivor to reflect that in harmony and Friendship we have spent the few days that we have lived together.

May 8th

I do not take my pen of late but I have Deaths to record Monday April 25 Ansel Cole departed, the Saturday following his father And on Thursday last Mr. Gleason King, thus God seems still to stretch out his hand in judgement against us& if we will not hear & repent it may be he will sweep up all off the stage of life then we shall land in a fixed unalterable state of either happiness or misery,

Wednesday June 1st

Thus far the Lord hath led me on, thus far prolonged my days, but how soon he will be pleased to cut them short I know not- perhaps this may be the last time that I take my pen if so I wish here to record it as my dying testimony that I believe God to be a present help in time of trouble  I have ever found him so & still believe he will be with me if I trust in him, not that I think he will preserve me to live in this world always no, my body must come down to the grave- but if God grant his presence Death will be no terror to me  I have not the assurance that my life will be spared any length of time but I have faith to believe that I have a friend that will be with in life or death  Since I have placed my hope in God  A refuge always nigh  Why should I like some timorous bird To distant mountains fly

Sabbath July 10

With a trembling hand by reason of weakness, but I trust with a thankful heart I again take my pen-& I am sure words will fail me to record the goodness of God  Could we with ink the oceans fill Were the whole earth of parchment made Was every single stick a quill And every man a scribe by trade To write the love of God to man Would drain the ocean dry Nor could the scroll contain the whole Tho’ stretched from sky to sky   why is it that his love & mercy should be thus extended to sinful me who am the least deserving of his goodness.  But contrary to my deserts I experienced his goodness on the 19th of June in a remarkable manner in the birth of my third son & now my health so far restored that I am in a measure comfortable.  But his goodness did not end with relieving my mortal frame  I have enjoyed great peace of mind & I trust have a thankful heart for his goodness  What shall I render to my God For all his kindness shown  I feel sensible of my dependence on God & know that I can do nothing to his acceptance without his assistance  I pray that he would give me a heart to praise him while I live & do my duty to all around me- since I have been confined I saw the coffin carried by that contained the remains of Mr. Barsella Patch he expired June 23rd.

Sabbath eve July 31st

I feel guilty in mind for neglecting to attend the institution of the Lords Supper this day- in the morning I thought I would attend but things arose that so ruffled and discomposed my mind that I did not feel in a right frame of mind to go forward- but whether my feelings were a sufficient excuse or not determined- if I tarry till I am better I shall never go at all- O my ingratitude, my carelessness to manifest my love to the best of beings who hath done such great things for me.

Tuesday eve Sept 21st 1814

The sun is set the cold winds of autumn begin to blow & all nature will soon be dressed in gloom, this is the appearance of things outward & now what is the situation of my mind within. I dare not say that I feel cold and frozen in heart with regard to spiritual things  I feel longing desires that the Sun of righteousness would arise in my heart with healings in his wings.  I see that my Blessings & comforts that I enjoy in life are many and great & my perplexities are great also, surrounded with a large family my care and work is great not because I want to gain the things of the world do I thus fatigue my body but my family calls for my present labour & how can I avoid it-I am sensible that my natural turn of mind is not fitted to my situation I naturally affect solitude and retirement more than is common for my years but instead of it I can seldom be alone except I steal an hour when my body wants to rest.  On Sunday the 11th of this month Capt. Sylvester departed this life and the Sabbath following the wife and a child of Mr. Burtons….

Fryday eve  ___11 Oclock

Being alone this eve I take my pen for diversion- sweet solitude  how often do I court thee and seldom find thee except in the dark shades of night.  Why is it thus?  That I who have from infancy loved retirement must have my house so filled with company.  Noise and confusion as to leave me no time for any serious meditation whilst others that love the noisy crowd lead a still and retired life.  I wish ever to be contented in the situation that God in his providence places me & if is the pleasure of God that I should still lead such a life as I do at present I sincerely wish I had a mind fitted for my circumstances yet notwithstanding all my little perplexities for I do not call them solid troubles  I have great cause for thankfulness for the inummerable blessings that I do enjoy  I see and know them to be innumerable.  But O my ingratitude & unthankfulness what punishment is reserved in store for me to humble my proud heart and bring it in subjection to the will of God. Life, health and friends are all dear to me but can I expect to enjoy them while others all around me are deprived. I read an account this eve of the death of Rebecca Cotrill a person that I have been aquainted with for years but she now sleeps in the dust & I live to record her death.

Monday eve Oct. 24

Lonesome days and nights are appointed unto me at present my bosom friend is absent on a journey and here I remain Melancholy and lonesome with numbers around me.  I have often thought that the natural marriage relation bore the most striking resemblance to the relation between Christ & his church of any thing of an earthly kind-  in the first place we choose one for life in preference to all others & the troubles & adversities of life do not wean the affections of those that are truly united from each other so the soul takes God for its portion through time & Eternity & although we many times wander from him& he chastises us & causes us to pass through trouble and affliction yet his love is still great unto us & though he slay us yet will we trust in him. & when his presence is withdrawn we are restless and uneasy until his return.

Sabbath Nov. 26th

Should I write the feelings of my mind methinks it would be a tale of confusion.  I feel like a fish out of water or like a bird in a cage.  They are not in their element in this situation so I am restless and uneasy & pine for something that I do not enjoy- as to my worldly happiness it is nt wealth or honor neither the applause of the great that I crave but I long to lead a still calm and retired life & with it enjoy a Saviours love & then my desires would be answered but cannot one enjoy the latter without the blessings of the former  I believe they may in a degree but I am so formed that outward perplexities many time times destroy my peace of mind within-  why was I formed with a mind for retirement to lead a life so contra but I know thati do wrong thus to repine at my situation when I reflect than that in obtaining my wishes perhaps some dear member of my family must be taken in order that my situation of life may answer my state of mind- what then must be done- I see no remedy but to bring my mind to my situation, & how shall I accomplish it without changing the natural disposition that was emplanted within me  life is short at longest all earthly concerns with me will soon end the storms will soon be “ore and O that when done with life may my soul may find a peaceful home.  When my comforts & blessings are far greater than my troubles how ungrateful to repine and did I lead the life that I aught to have before my fellow mortals no doubt but many of my outward perplexities would be removed.

Saturday eve Dec. 31st

My life is spared to again take my pen, while others like me saw the beginning of this year have slept in death before this night the close of it-  on he morn of the 1st day of this month Betsey Tanner & on the seventh Sophia Burr departed this life both blooming girls but a short time before, & on the 23 Mr. Benjamin Niles.


Sabbath Feb. 26 1815

My long neglect of taking my pen is not so much for want of opportunity as it is for sweet meditations that may afford me comfort in the future perusal.I hardly think there is a person on earth in just the frame of mind that I am in & I hardly know how to describe it.  I am young & at the same time have lost a relish for the world & its enjoyments yet many times shudder at the thoughts of leaving it & trying an unknown state.  I long I pine for enjoyment that I have experienced in times past when I thought I could say my God is mine & I am his I then thought it a burden to dwell below in my sinful body among sinful mortals & longed to go where I might be holy as God is holy, O was it all delusion! If not when shall I again find inward peace.  When will the time come on I shall from sin be free Lord help me for my sin to mourn Have mercy Lord on me.  O cleanse my heart & fit me to appear before thee. I feel my whole dependence to be on God alone my life, health, & friends, are in his hands and he can do with me & mine as seemeth him good-now for me to be reconciled will be my happiness. I may think that I am while I enjoy them all, but let God deprive me & then comes the trying time

April 2nd

From the confusion of a large family I withdraw & take my pen in order to compose my mind- I am a person that was formed in nature for Solitude & I long to be placed in a situation that I may enjoy it more than I long for earthly riches at the same time if I am wrong in thus wishing I wish not to indulge the thought- but O for more patience to submit & be contented- I know that I am fretful & repining in mind but it is not oweing to any displeasure that I have to any part or person around me but because I am not in my element take a fish from the water or confine a bird from flying & see how uneasy they will be- just so uneasy am I in the midst of noise confusion and a large family needlessly- could I leave to look more as my comforts & blessings & have a thankful heart for them rather than a repining one for my perplexities  I am sensible that my enjoyments of mind would be far greater   I sometimes think it is of but little consequence how we pass our lives whether pleasing or displeasing to our natural inclinations seeing they are so short & uncertain  last Sabbath I attended meeting and communion with the church, but few in number there seems to be a general declension among us & I sometimes feel to mourn for it in myself and others   some remove to a distant part of the natural world while others are removed unto the world of spirits.  Last Sabbath eve the wife of Mr. Moses Fisk departed & on Tuesday she was committed to the grave  she has left 2 little children to experience their loss although not old enough to realize it- I am indulged for the present to nurse my prattling babes but how long God only knows

Tuesday eve April 26th

Seven years have rolled over my head since I made it my practice as often as inclination & opportunity presented to record particular feelings & transactions- now this was my ___ in doing it solely for my own diversion & perusal- but as I know not but that I may be called suddenly to leave time & these lines exposed to publick it is my request that some Friend would take charge of them until my little babes arrive at years of discretion  to peruse them perhaps with the blessing of God it may have good effect on their youthful minds   I have often prayed to God for them that whatever sufferings he call them to pass through in life still that God wants to be their Friend & lead them to a knowledge of himself & may my desires be answered although I may not life to see the day.  When I entered the marriage covenant with the one that was then, & still is, the choice of my heart I had a firm reliance that I had the approbation of God in my undertaking yet not withstanding I foresaw trouble & perplexity would ensue  & I think I have experienced the latter in as general a degree as any one person of my years, when I have the aged on one hand to complain of the noise and confusion & the young on the other wishing to be indulged in their youthful diversions & my own heart longing for solitude good God how shall sinful mortal man answer the expectations of all  we may love our Friends & wish & strive for their welfare & yet it may not be convenient nor agreeable to be constantly surrounded with them yet notwithstanding all my little perplexities could I recal past years & have the knowledge then that I now have I think I should do as I then did for I am sensible there is no one on earth that I am so happy with as in the company of the one I have chosen for life-it is surely the greatest satisfaction of an earthly kind to believe we have a friend that partakes of our joys & sympathizes in our troubles & so far as in their to smooth the rugged path of life.  My dearest friend sets me a pattern worthy of imitation- ever patient, calm, & composed amidst perplexity trouble & confusion & striving for the good of his fellow mortals tho’ many times to his injury.  Since I possess this first and greatest blessing of having such a friend let me realise the value of what I do possess & be contented.  I hope I may be enabled to govern his fretful disposition that has raged in my bosom & enjoy the blessings I have with a thankful heart.

Fryday eve June 10th

All nature is hushed in silence & here I sit not melancholy, but alone to meditate read or write as my mind may lead, retirement I love & if I cannot enjoy the company of those few that I consider my friends I prefer being alone to the noisy crowd  O how often have I wished that my natural turn of mind was more fitted to my condition  I am sensible that I many times displease those around me by my discomposedness & impatience when surrounded with numbers-  happy should I be could I meet all troubles & perplexities & still retain a calm and composed mind  on Wednesday May 31st Mrs. Bishop departed this life  she left an infant babe but a few hours old together with other children to feel their loss.

Tuesday eve July 4th

Again I have an opportunity to take my pen  some of my family have gone abroad for diversion others rest in their beds  my little babe lies sleeping in the cradle by my side & I am the only one awake in the house  I praise the happy moment when I can enjoy my meditations alone & am not distracted with noise and confusion…  O how great are the blessings bestowed on me I think I have this night some realizing sense of them.  But my ingratitude is not to be expressed.. what returns can I render to God for his goodness   he asks nothing but a thankful heart & that again must be a gift form him- lord bestow it upon me is the desire of my soul.  I think many times that I will not indulge myself to write my feelings because I do not always possess the sane frame of mind but am many times repineing ungrateful & almost stupid with regard to spiritual things, but God knows the sincerity of my heart when I write-

Nov. 5th

Did I realize that this would be the last opportunity I should have to employ my pen then what would my thesis be.  O I could spend hours in recording the goodness of God to me from my infancy to the present day & I now feel myself the most undeserving of all his creatures thus to enjoy his mercy.  When I so often rebel & so often stray from my heavenly parent why does he again extend his mercy to the wanderer.  “tis because he is God and not man, he changeth not  was I as firm in the belief that my soul was on the foundation as I am that the foundation cannot be shaken I never more should doubt but say I sometimes will God suffer one of his true chosen children to have such a heart of sin & pollution as I sometimes see myself to have, but if I am his would he not rather purge away the filth of sin cleanse my heart & fit me more to enjoy the heavenly state & appear before him  I must soon resign my breath soon these active limbs will cease to move & my naked soul appear before God & I have not begun my heaven here on earth I shall never enjoy it after death   When I turn my eyes within All is dark & vain & wild Filled with unbelief and sin Can I deem myself a child

Dec 3rd

My life is still lengthened whilst others are cut off   on the 16th of Nov. Mrs. Higgins wife of Elijah Higgins bade adieu to husband and children & took her flight into an unknown world.  And we trust to her it was a happy exchange & that she is delivered from this vain world of sin And with her blessed savior drinks endless pleasure in.  time to me looks short Eternity near the pleasures of life insipid without I enjoy my God in them, but let God smile & all is well  What Sinners value I resign Lord “tis enough that thou art mine  when I can apply these words to myself I am happy


Sabbath March 17 1816

I took my little book this day & find that 3 months have passed since writing. & this day I wish to record the goodness of God to me & mine.  Our children have been visited with sickness the winter past & my little babe was brought as I thought to the brink of the grave.  I looked on him & expected soon to see him breathe his last & O what anquish tore my heart at the thought of parting with him  I thought I was willing that God should do with him as he thought best yet still the ties of nature held him fast but he is spared & in a measure recovered his health & I hope it is in mercy to him and me  whilst I and my family are spared numbers of others are cut off- on Fryday March 1st Mrs Willis expired and Tuesday 12 an infant of Mrs. Ephraim Phinney was committed to the grave on the 15th the aged Mrs. Rude and yesterday heard that Mr. Amos Leonard has expired & is this day to be committed to the grave- my time to die will also come some one will record my death as I now do that of others and perhaps soon

Wednesday night 27th

I am uncommonly blessed with a sense of the goodness of God to me and I wish here to record it-that I may have one evidence that I am not left to the hardness of heart & stupidity.  I pray that I may live answerable to the every bestowed & not provoke the Lord by ingratitude to withdraw them.  I sometimes have such a sense of myself & see my ingratitude to be so great that I am astonished that God continues his goodness to me.  what stays his hand to he does not cut me off from the land of the living why not snatch my dear friends from me or why not deprive me of the comforts of life whilst I improve  the no more to his glory..  O unbounded goodness! I see that if I had my just deserts I should be deprived of all these blessings at one stroke and my soul fixed in a state of unutterable woe instead of a day & space to turn to God & seek for mercy.  May I improve my spared moments that yet remain in the service of God & arise & shake myself from the dust & rubbish of the world  O my soul hast thou been plucked as a brand from the burning if so it appears to me that I shall be but a small faint star in the heavenly Jerusalem if I shine in proportion there, as my works have been manifest here, for I can see nothing that I have ever done to advance Christ’s kingdom here in the world…  I confess I have been a poor unprofitable servant & am afraid idle in the vineyard of God  yet O if this is the last hour with me God can still use me as an instrument for his glory & reward me with a penny although I do not deserve it.  Christ says if ye love me keep my commandments is this the evidence then that we have love to God?  No wonder that my evidences are so faint & low when I view my life & see so little conformity therein to the commands of God  if I have an earthly friend whose friendship I highly prize how studiously will I strive to please how fearful to offend, & shall I strive less to please the king of kings in whose favor there is life & in whose presence are joys forever-more  reflect my soul: turn and be rational prise things according to their value & from hence forth may I conduct like a rational imortal soul…  my pen runs freely this night, my meditations sweet but I will write no more only to record the death of Doct. Case who expired Fryday eve 22nd..

June 17th

By reason of indisposition of body I am confined for the most part of the time this summer at home  I attended meeting the last Sabbath in May and took my seat with the church in the ordinance of the sacrament  I think I have not seen the church so enlivened in general for a long time  my heart rejoiced to hear them speak of the goodness of God  I long for the time to come that we may hear all around tell of his goodness & make it the subject of common conversation—we can hear of the displays of his power in the conviction & conversion of souls in almost every town around us & shall we be passed by in this town and left to hardness of heart & blindness of mind-  God in mercy forbid it & strengthen the hearts of his children to call might’ly on him that he would visit his people in this part of the land as in former times.  I want a heart to pray for it is the happiest frame of mind I can be in to have my desires ascend to God for myself & fellow mortals  I have often wished for my heart to be brought in subjection to the will of & if I am not deceived I think for some months past that I have enjoyed in as great a degree as ever I did in my life  I think I am willing that he should dispose of me and mine as he sees best-  I ask but his presence to be with me & then pain will be sweet & life or death gain.  May God ___ this frame of mind.  When troubles like a gloomy cloud Have gathered thick & thundered loud He near my soul hath always stood His loving kindness O how good.

Saturday July 27th

Time is on the wing, Eternity near, death seizing on my fellow mortals around & may be this is the last opportunity that will be allowed me to record their deaths.  On Saturday 20 Mrs. Ede was found fallen amongst the rocks in a mangled bruised situation  with just the appearance of life but soon expired- it is the opinion of people that she put herself in that situation in order to end her days, having been for some time past in a melancholy frame of mind  Fryday 19th Mrs Kent departed after a long lingering illness- & yesterday the aged Mr. Eben Williams & this day his remains committed to the grave & we have great grounds for hope that their souls have gone to rest-  why then should we mourn for the loss of their company here on Earth. No- but rather mourn for ourselves & prepare to follow them when called  I rationally know that I must die and O that I might realise it in such a manner that I may live each day as though I expected it would be the last.

Sep 8th 1816

The Summer has ended-the autumnal month has arrived & the appearance of the face of nature is melancholy indeed- the earth is parched for want of rain & the chilling winds whistle loudly which seems to threaten a want of food for Man and beast.  But God can stay his hand & in mercy spare & preserve us as a people altho’ we do not deserve it.  May we feel our dependence & turn & repent & implore, his mercy for Soul & Body.  Our bodies will want sustenance but a little while longer & then then they must be meat for the worms, but our never dying souls must be fed from the fountain of living waters or starve to all Eternity.  there is rich provision provided & I believe God willing to bestow it, then why will we die & never taste his grace ‘Tis the same love that spread the feast Must sweetly fence us in Else we shall still refuse to taste And perish in our sin-  on Friday August 30th the aged Mr. Tinker & his wife departed & on the Sabbath following were both committed to one grave  on Wednesday 4th Mr. Amaziah Cole departed after a long & distressing illness of many months, he expressed great willingness to depart & even longed for time to come- happy frame of mind to feel willing to give up all & go when God calls- I have long wished to possess it but f=I can’t say that I think that I have attained it, or in other words that I now do- yet I pray that if my glass is almost run that God will enable me to give up all into his hands and meet death with composure  I have many dear friends for whose sake I would wish to live a little longer, but my dear little helpless children that I think need my care & assistance attaches me most strongly to life-& my prayer is that my life may be soared for their sakes a little longer- yet if God hath otherwise determined he can dispose others to render that assistance to them that they need from me- may the care & kindness that I think I have shown others when bereft of a kind mother, be extended to my offspring when I am no more.  I feel to mourn & lament that I have not lived the life that I aught before my fellow Mortals but nothing of guilt lies on mind that I have not done for their temporal welfare as far as in my power-& my desires have ascended to God that he would turn their hearts & dispose them to love him-

Nov 3rd

Again I am permitted to take my pen after a confinement of many weeks- on the 24th of September I was delivered of my 4th son and now my health in a gret measure restored- surely goodness & mercy follow me all the days of my life- I experience it-yes and I think I realise it- & I desire to be thankful for it-  but I think sometimes I am like Job I do not serve God for naught for I can see that I am surrounded with blessings & should God be pleased to turn his hand upon me in a way of affliction may I still be enabled to say that all is well- I cannot always expect the life of health of myself & family- the parting day must come with me and mine & O am I prepared have I discharged my duty faithfully?  Can I give up my account in peace! These are questions of great importance I think sometimes if I had that true preparation of heart that is necessary to make a death be easy it would make me more faithful in the discharge of my duty: more obedient to the commands of Christ and no fear to appear before my judge when called for…  on the 17th of Oct. Susan Gowen departed this life & this day a child of Mr. Samuel Cole is to be committed to the grave

Nov 28th

I realized when writing my last scroll that some trying scene awaited me, I was called the second time to see my little Otis lie panting for breath & expecting every moment to see him breath his last but he is again raised as from the bed of death & spared a little longer   I was brought to say thy will be done & I think if ever I called on God as a present God & nigh, that I then did it.  I could plead as a child would to its parent for submission  I will still trust in God that he will order all things well & in his own time will relieve me from perplexities that now attend me,  he knows the confusion of my mind & the earnest desire that I have to lead a still and retired life that my mind may be more fixed on heaven & divine things


January 13th 1817

I have lived to see the past year close & thus far the beginning of a new. May I begin with new resolutions to lead a new & holy life. May my desires ascend to God that he would assist me  I can hear of those around me being anxious for their souls & the souls of others, I shall remain dull & stupid in the cause of God—up and be doing my soul while the day of life is lengthened the time is short at longest that we can speak & act for God in this world   soon my days will be ended & how shall I appear before my judge- it is on him alone that I depend & will he plead my cause in that trying day.  O God though knowest.

April 3rd

A long, cold and dreary winter has passed & the sun begins to shine with his warm rays & chase the cold from the earth.  When O when will the sun of righteousness again shine in my soul- I feel like a poor empty, needy creature & I fear sometimes that I never more shall be supplyed from the fountain of living waters  Christ hath said in his word every branch in me that beareth not fruit his Father taketh away  then if I ever was I branch in Christ yet may I not justly fear that I shall be cut away when I see my life & can see nothing that I have done to the glory of God  my tears flow while I write for it lies with weight on my mind.  Must I after all that has been done for my soul at last come up short & be banished from the presence of God- forbid it O Father of mercy & purge me & ___ about me that I may bear fruit to thee.  There are many there are many ___ in the Bible but my heart replys at this time they are not for me  Thus burdened I go mourning round Nor for peace not joy nor comfort find.

Wednesday 16 April

I have been called to pass through a trying scene since writing last Saturday at 6 O clock eve our aged grandmother expired [Margaret Cowing] she has been unwell for many months but we did not think her so near her end until the morn before her death.  But she is gone & left us never more to return her place in the house is empty  I can truly say that all around me looks gloomy and desolate yet I trust her spirit is more happy in the presence of God  I can look & see she was a pattern of patience & resignation in her last illness & many times expressed an anxious desire to depart this life. O happy soul if thou hast met a smiling judge  no longer dost thou need our care and assistance , the smiles or frowns of Mortals avail the nothing but completely happy in the favor of God to all Eternity.  Since her death I have tried to examine my conduct toward her the 8 years we have lived together & I think if I am not deceived I have done my duty for her temporal welfare “far as a ___ failing Mortal” like myself could do but I lament that I have not improved my opportunity more in her last sickness to discourse with her concerning her future state  it might have been a comfort to the dear dying saint & would have saved me many reflections which I now have.  Father of mercy O forgive me & help me more faithfully to do my duty to the living, injured spirit if tho dust know the sorrows of the human heart thou wilt think me severely punished  & forgive my failing & if permitted lend thy tutelary care that my conversation may be more agreeable to the profession that I have made- O that this death may not be lost upon any of this family but may we all be prepared to follow her when called for.  “Death from all death hath set her free And will her gain forever be Death loos’d the massy chains of woe To let the mournful captive go”.

Monday eve June 9th 1817

I think I have some sense this night of the certainty of my departure from this world & that I must inhabit a world of spirits, a never-ending Eternity, and is this the case?  Then why my soul this inactivity this lifelessness that sometimes possesses thee. I am astonished at myself  if I am a true child of God why am I not more engaged in his cause, I aught always to speak of his goodness & try if possible to persuade others to believe in a crucified Saviour, but in the contrary my life and conversation condems me & carries more the evidence that I am a stranger to this heavenly love & unconcerned as to the future state of myself & others, but the God that knows my heart knows that I am not insensible of these things altho’ my outward actions condem me.  long time I have been pondering on my situation & sometimes have almost concluded that I must renounce my hope viewing myself so sinful, seeing so ittle fruit, & so much unlikeness to God.  But as I was musing on my situation yesterday these words came to mind “pour upon thy sins no longer Jesus precious blood was spilt”  O can it be that his blood was spilt for me who am the vilest of the vile  I think I long to live more to his glory & to be more willing to give more obedience to his commands.  My grief and burden long hs been because I could not cease from sin  there seems to be some little attention in the neighborhood to the concerns of a future world & last week eve we had a fine meeting at this house  I think it would rejoice me greatly to see all around me engaged in religion & to experience it in my own breast  Other refuge have I none Hangs my helpless soul on thee.

August 17th

Last Sabbath the aged Mrs. Todd & Mrs. Austin with Mr. Thayer went forward in the ordinance of baptism.  They have meetings in this neighborhood once each week  I hope they may still be continued & that God in his own time will grant the outpouring of his Spirit upon the people.

Sep 6th

The autumnal month has arrived the earth seems to be loaded with food for Man and beast & O shall we as a people partake thus largely of such blessings & not have a thankful heart to God the author heaven forbid.  When all thy mercies O my God My viewing soul surveys Transported with the view I’m lost In wonder, love & praise It is surely the desire of my heart that I may be sensible of & thankful for the blessings I enjoy & be enabled to do my duty to all around me.

Oct 12

Blest with health peace and plenty what have I to do but to praise God & improve all ___ to his glory-  I know that I am sensible each day of the goodness of God to me & I think I am sometimes truly thankful if I am not Lord make me to be so-is the prayer of my heart but should the scene change and sickness & other distresses attend one of my family may I be submissive & say the will of the Lord be done  on the 27 of Sep Mrs. Thomson departed this life  her body now rests in the grave & we trust “That her immortal soul is gone To put eternal glory on”  O may I be prepared to pass the solemn change of death it sometimes looks near and very important.

Saturday eve Nov 22nd

I here sit awaiting alone in anxious expectation to hear from our distressed sister Charlotte [Charlotte Cowing 9 Oct 1794- 24 Nov 1817, Calvin’s sister], we this day heard of her sudden illness & it is not expected she can continue long without immediate help- may God prepare her to exchange worlds if he is about to call her  O important scene! To think of being breathless & senseless & our spirits to take their flight into an unknown world.

Wednesday Dec 11th

I was interrupted while writing & now have melancholy scenes to record! Yes-the young and once blooming Charlotte lies mouldering in the silent grave….  She continued greatly distressed till the morn of the 24th & then she resigned her breath, & calm, serene & peacefully she closed her eyes in death, “Rejoice ye mourners here below We trust she is gone to worlds above Yet mourn our lives in parting so For she was worthy of our love…  her little babe was then taken ill & was brought to this house the Tuesday following & on Fryday eve Nov 5th closed his eyes & on the Sabbath following was laid by the side of its departed mother.   Saturday 26 Mrs. Jones departed & have since heard her babe likewise  Wednesday Nov 3 Mr. Utly & on the 4th Mrs Reed.  Nor yet the bitter cup of sorrow’s No Death’s content “till he has bound the whole

Thursday 18th

Death is the theme that still employs my pen- on Tuesday eve last Mrs. Higgins departed & this day her remains were committed to the grave with her infant babe in her arms…  O the repeated calls that we have as a people to prepare for death & shall we remain careless & inattentive & flatter ourselves that death will confine himself to Females of this description & the rest of mankind in general escape  we are all subjects of death and sooner or later must fall as victims to its unsatisfied jaws  that will not be content until the whole race of Adam is swallowed up.  Time to me looks short Eternity is of vast importance & I think if not deceived that I can sometimes say that I have a friend that will be with me in the trying hour.  I have a God that changeth not Why should I be perplexed the God that owns me in this world Will own me in the next.   I can truly say that my whole dependence is on God for Time and Eternity  I feel myself to be in his hands & at times willing to be at his disposal.  When I review my past life I am sensible that it has not been such as my fellow mortals might reasonable expect from one that has made a profession to try to love & serve the Lord  & if sinful mortals can see imperfection in me, what am I in the pure eyes of Jehovah that knows the sins of heart & life  O when I reflect on this & still have hope that the blood of the Saviour has cleansed this ___ soul of mine—well may I cry out infinite love!  Unbounded mercy’s astonishing to men & angels that God should have mercy on so vile a worm of the dust….may the tear of forgiveness also, from my fellow mortals fall on my cold remains, & my faults and imperfections be buried in a grave with me & not rise in the minds of any to disturb their peace and tranquility.  I feel to hope this will be the case when my friends consider the fraility of human nature & the many difficultys that have attended my weak efforts to please those around me.