صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

He negatived thirteen provincial counsellors chosen at the first election after his arrival.

"Adjourned the court to Salem, that he might reduce them more easily to his arbitrary measures. "He summoned the mandamus council to their seats, in violation of the provincial charters.

"He attempted to put in execution an act of parliament "for regulating the government," which entirely altered the charter constitution of the province; and another act, authorizing the governour, in case any person is indicted for murder or any other capital offence in aid of magistracy, &c. to send such person (if the governour approves not of their having a trial in Boston) to any other colony, or to Great Britain to be tried.

"He issued a proclamation, forbidding any of the inhabitants of the province from signing a paper called a solemn league and covenant for the purposes of non-importation and non-consumption of British goods.

"He sent troops to seize the provincial powder in the magazine at Charlestown.

"He tried to prevent the Essex county meeting at Salem; and ordered troops from the village to assist in dispersing said meeting.

"He broke up the ground on Boston neck, for entrenchments and fortifications, which was an impediment to passengers going to, and coming from, the country towns.

"By a proclamation he discharged the members of the general court, to deprive the province of a representative body.

"He sent troops to Marshfield and Salem; and attempted to seize cannon and other military stores. "The several avenues to the town of Boston he ordered to be guarded by centinels from his troops, and reduced the town to the state of a garrison.

"He altered the terms of agreement with the town, as a condition of the citizens removing out of .it, after they had complied with their part of the

condition; and detained articles he had previously promised should be removed by the owners, and caused many impediments in the manner of their


In the month of June, 1775, he proclaimed Massachusetts to be in a state of rebellion, the provincial congress having in the month preceding In his renounced the government of gen. Gage. proclamation he proscribed the patriots, S. Adams and Hancock.

Under his orders Bunker Hill battle was fought, and Charlestown burnt," &c. &c.

All these transactions took place during his short administration.

Having obtained leave to depart from America, he sailed from Boston, October 10th, 1775, and passed the remainder of his days in retirement. We hear of no peculiar honours conferred upon him in his own country; and here, if men did not feel an abhorrence of his conduct, it was because they viewed him with contempt.

GAY EBENEZER, D. D. pastor of the first church in Hingham, was born in Dedham, of parents, who descended from the first settlers of that ancient town. He made early progress in literature, and was sent from the town school to Harvard College, where he was graduated, 1714. He was ordained over the church in Hingham, 1718. When he was a young man he obtained the notice of gov. Burnet, who was a good judge of characters, and particularly fond of men of letters. It is a saying of his, handed down from the last generation, that among the clergy of Massachusetts, Mr. Bradstreet of Charlestown, and Mr. Gay of Hingham had the most erudition. One of these left no publication as evidence of his talents. The other printed many sermons, Ichiefly occasional. During the long life he passed on earth, very few works, except sermons, were emitted from the presses of New England. What encouragement could be given to talents in a coun

try just rising into notice? Many a flower has dropped its leaves in this American wilderness; which, transplanted in some fair garden, would have grown and flourished. The clergy of this country were formerly very dependent, though treated with great respect by their people. They had to labour hard in the fields of this world, as well as to do their duty to God's husbandry, that souls "might not wither, but have their fruit in love and good works." They were, however, happy and contented with their lot: though not in easy or af fluent circumstances they were above want. If they had a thirst for knowledge, they suffered, because few men had libraries, nor were many books imported upon any subject but law, physick and divinity. If no professional men were in their par ishes, they could not gain much information. Dr. Gay was as well situated as most of his brethren; and he had great resources in his own mind. Among his parochial connections were several gentlemen in conspicuous stations, and capable of improving the minds of each other. When he was 85 years old, he preached upon this text, Joshua, xiv. 10, marking the number of his years-"I am this day fourscore and five years old." He says, sixty three years have I spent in the work of the ministry among you. One hundred and forty six years ago, your forefathers came with their pastor and settled in this place. I am the third in the pastorate of this church which has not been two years vacant. Scarce any parish but hath had more in the office in the same space of time. The people of this town have been steady to their own ministers living to old age; have not been given to change, nor with itching ears have heaped to themselves teachers. I bless God who disposed my lot among a people, with whom I have lived in great peace eleven years longer than either of my predecessors. I have only to wish that my labours had been as profitable as they have been acceptable to them. I retain a grate

[ocr errors]

ful sense of the kindnesses (injuries I remember
none) I have received from them. While I have
reaped of their carnal things to my comfortable
subsistence, it has been my great concern to sow
unto them spiritual things, which might spring
up in a harvest of eternal blessings. That their af
fections to me, as their pastor, have continued from
fathers to children, and children's children, hath been
thankfully observed by me; and should have been
improved as an advantage and incentive to do them
(in return of love for love) all possible good. It is
but little I can do now in the work to which I am
kept up so late in the evening of my days," &c.
This sermon is styled the "old man's calender ;"
and is a very interesting discourse, though not
equal in composition to those he printed in young.
er life. His election sermon, 1745;" the sermon
"before the convention of ministers, 1746," and at
"Dudleian lecture, 1759," have been much cele-
brated. The funeral sermon "upon Mr. Hancock,"
father of the late governour, and two upon
death of Dr. Mayhew" are among the best occa-
sional discourses.

Mr. Gay received his diploma of doctor in divinity, in 1785, from the university where he had his education.

This great and good man died, Sabbath day, March 8, 1787, in the 91st year of his age, and 69th of his ministry. The vigour of his mind continued to this remarkable age. He was preparing to go through the labours of the day when he died. "His indulgent Lord, as it has been well expressed, "when he was about to enter upon the service of his sanctuary here below, called him to the more sublime enjoyments of his temple above.”*

His publications, beside those mentioned above were, a sermon at the ordination of Mr. Joseph Green, May 12, 1725 there was a high encomium upon this sermon by Mr. Foxcroft of Boston; a sermon upon the arrival of gov. Belcher, 1730; a sermon at the ordination of Ebenezer Gay, jun. at Suffield, 1742;

GEE JOSHUA, rev. minister of the second church in Boston, was colleague with the famous Cotton Mather. He was born in Boston, the son of a reputable tradesman, and graduated at Harvard College, A. D. 1717; ordained in November, 1723. His talents were not of the popular kind, though he was fervent in spirit, zealous in promoting the great revival of religion in 1742, 3. His genius was profound; his learning considerable; his theological attainments very superiour. His sermons are well composed and argumentative, and they, who were intimate with him, speak of his talents for conversation as very uncommon. He indulged a kind of literary indolence, and preferred to converse rather than to write. Yet he never delivered in the pulpit any thing like an extemporaneous address; and was reluctant to print his discourses, when urged, because he must finish them with some labour. He was bigotted in his opinions, which were in favour of high supralapsarian doctrines. He was somewhat bitter in controversy. This appears by his attack upon the convention, which gave a testimony against the errors prevailing in 1745, and the spirit which had been too much encouraged, when itinerant preachers and fanatical priests disturbed the church


His passions led him to imprudence in his ministerial conduct. During his ministry a divi

of Dr. Mayhew at Boston, 1747; Mr. Derby at Scituate, 1751; Mr Carpenter at Swanzey, 1753; Mr. Rawson at Yarmouth, 1755; Mr. Bunker Gay at Hinsdale, 1763; Mr. Gannet, Cumberland, Nova Scotia, 1768; a sermon at the annual thanksgiving, 1770.

In a note of Dr. Shute's sermon at his funeral, is an account of the ministers of Hingham.-Rev. Peter Hobart, who came from England with his church, was the first minister, and settled, 1635, and died, January 20, 1679. Rev. John Norton, ordained, Nov 27, 1678; died, October 3, 1716. Vacant one year and six months. (During this time the church invited Mr. Samuel Fiske to be their pastor, who gave an answer in the negative, expecting then to be settled in the New South, Boston.) June 11, 1718, Dr. Gay was ordained. Three ministers in 152 years, and through the whole of the time, vacant hardly a year and six months.

« السابقةمتابعة »