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discipline of this flood changed their habit; the water in them remained at a fixed height, and salt.
When this extraordinary tide was sweeping over the land, the spray arising from it was very great. It is spoken of as having resembled a driving snow storm, through which objects could be discerned only at short distances. But the leaves of the trees did not afterwards exhibit any of the dark red colour, (as if they had been scorched,) which was observed in more northern regions, and especially in the vicinity of Boston. The leaves of trees destroyed by the flood exhibited very soon the appearance of death, but not of having been burnt; neither was salt spray collected on window glass to any amount.
3. In regard to the more permanent influence of the sea water on the land.
Very little rain had fallen for several weeks previous to the storm; the soil in this region, naturally inclined to dryness, was very dry. A large proportion of the salt water, therefore, penetrated the earth, which may be. said to have been saturated with it. Many persons have expressed an opinion, that the water of this tide was much more strongly impregnated with the ingredients of sea water, than that of ordinary tides. Perhaps, with some limitation, this opinion may be correct, as there are several streams of fresh water emptying into Buzzard's Bay, which may diminish the strength of ordinary tide, waters; but would have but little influence on this occasion. Salt was observed to have crystallized in many places on the shore within a few days after this flood. This may in some measure account for the remarkable saltness of the wells and watering places. This saltness continued in them, unabated, till the first week of the following March. The winter had been severe, and the ground frozen very deep till the middle of February, when there were several weeks of moderate weather, with soft rains, which dissolved the snows and opened the ground; shortly after which, it was discovered that several of the wells and watering places were fresh. The water in these had been tasted but a few days pre
vious, and was then as disagreeable as at first. The freshness must have taken place suddenly. After a succession of dry weather, these wells, &c. grew salt again, but not to the same degree as before ; and it has been observed, that, after heavy rains, they would be fresh, but become salt after dry weather; the degree of saltness diminishing from time to time. At the present period they are perfectly fresh ; but some of them did not entirely recover until the opening of the ground in the spring of 1818; and in a large pond, which has but a very small outlet, the water still retains some taste of sea water.
Several of the overflown fields were, in the spring of 1816, sown with oats, which produced a more abundant crop than ever was known in that region before. Indian corn flourished remarkably, as also spring grain ; and the land, generally, was found in a much better state for tillage, than before it had been overflown. On grass lands, the effect was various. Grasses which had been sown, perished; and there grew in place of them the common wild grass of the country, which continues to keep possession, where the fields have been left to the ordinary course of nature; but where they have been ploughed and sown again, good grass is produced. Generally speaking, whatever grasses were growing on level grounds, perished; and those of a poorer sort sprung up in their place. In several places where the land lay sloping toward the sea, the natural grass in pasture grounds was killed ; and, in the following year, clover grew there. In 1817 the clover decreased in quantity, and nearly disappeared in 1818. Mosses, also, were destroyed by the sea water, and grass grew where they had been. Sea water appears to have acted as an alterative, and may, perhaps, be found useful, in some cases, as a manure.
The effect of this flood upon the land is now nearly past ; it has been of some temporary service to the soil ; but this temporary benefit is by no means an equivalent for the destruction of property which took place at the time of the storm. The harvests were then generally in
the field, and the annual produce of the salt manufactories had not been removed to a place of safty. The dependence of many families for their yearly subsistence was in a great measure lost; and much distress was brought upon the people in several respects. Contemplating them, as from their places of refuge, beholding the progress of this destructive flood, perhaps the following extract may not be thought inapplicable:
“ Still overhead
All that the winds had spared
CHURCHES AND MINISTERS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE.
THE oldest church in this section of New Hampshire was gathered at Dunstable on the 16th December, 1685. The original constituting members were, Rev. Thomas Weld, Jonathan Tyng, John Cummings, John Blanchard, Cornelius Waldo, Samuel Warner, Obadiah Perry, and Samuel French. Rev. Thomas Weld was the first minister. He was a native of Roxbury, and graduated at Harvard College in 1671. The time of his ordination is not exactly known, though it is presumed to have been soon after the church was organized. There is a tradition among some of his descendants, that his death was occasioned by the Indians, who beset bis garrison in April or May, 1702; but this seems rather improbable, since an event of this kind would not have escaped the notice of our historians. A rough flat stone, with no inscription, points out the place of his interment. His first wife, Eliz
CHURCHES AND MINISTERS IN N. H.
abeth, died 19 July, 1687, at the age of 31. Mary Weld, his second wife, died 2 June, 1731, in her 64th year, at Attleborough, Massachusetts, where her son, the Rev. Habijah Weld, who was born about six months after his father's death, was a settled minister above fifty-four years. He was born 2 September, 1702; graduated at Harvard College 1723; and died 14 May, 1782, at the age of eighty. A short account of Attleborough by him is published in the Hist. Coll. Vol. I. second series.
Rev. Thomas Weld was succeeded in the ministry at Dunstable by Rev. Nathaniel Prentice, who graduated at Harvard College in 1715. The date of his ordination is not known. He died February 25, 1737, and was succeeded by Rev. Josiah Swan, who graduated at Harvard College in 1733. According to the Rev. Dr. Belknap, he was ordained in the year 1739. He was dismissed in 1746, in consequence of a division of the town, by running the line between the provinces of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. He, however, remained in town several years, and afterwards removed to Lancaster, Massachusetts, and from thence to Walpole in this state, where he died. Rev. Samuel Bird, from Dorchester, succeeded the Rev. Mr. Swan. He entered Harvard College in the same class with the Rev. Bishop Bass, and would have graduated in 1744, but in consequence of some rash censures upon the governours of the college, and the Rev. Mr. Appleton of Cambridge, did not obtain his degree. He was ordained in 1747; dismissed in 1751; and afterwards removed to New Haven, where he died. The settlement of Mr. Bird caused a division in the church and town. A second church was organized, and an additional meeting-house was erected, in consequence of this division. After his dismission, an union of these churches was effected by means of an ecclesiastical council, which was convened in 1759. Rev. Joseph Kidder succeeded Mr. Bird after a long interval. He was born at Billerica, 18 November, 1741; graduated at Yale College, 1764; and was ordained 18 March, 1767. Difficulties having arisen in respect to his civil contract, it was dissolyed by mutual consent and by advice of a coun
cil, on the 15th June, 1796. But his pastoral relation to the church continued till his death in September, 1818, having almost completed his 77th year. He was the only surviving minister of those in the regular exercise of their ministry, at the time of his settlement, in the state of New Hampshire.
Rev. Ebenezer P. Sperry, the sixth pastor in succession, was ordained as a colleague with Rev. Mr. Kidder on the 3d September, 1813. Mr. Sperry continued in the ministry but little more than five years, and was dismissed from his pastoral charge.
The church is now vacant.
[Authorities for the preceding :-Dr. C. Mather's Hecatompolis, Note in Alden's Collection of American Epitaphs-Historical ColJections, Vol. IX.-Belknap’s Hist. N. H.-Rev. Dr. Burnap’s Sermon at Funeral of Rev. Jos. Kidder.-Rev. M. Sperry's Summary MS. documents.]
A Congregational church was gathered in this town in 1741. Rev. Joshua Tufts, who graduated at Harvard College in 1736, was the first minister. He was dismissed in 1744. Rev. Samuel Cotton, a descendant from the celebrated John Cotton, B. D. one of the first ministers in Boston, succeeded, and was ordained in February, 1765. He received his education at Harvard College, where he graduated in 1759. He was dismissed in 1784, and afterwards removed to Claremont, where he is still living, but not in the exercise of the ministry. After his removal the church continued in a broken state till 1809, when a church was again formed in the Presbyterian order, and Rev. Nathaniel Kennedy was settled. He was dismissed by the Presbytery in April, 1812, and was resettled at Kensington. Rev. Enoch Pilsbury succeeded Mr. Kennedy. He was ordained 25 October, 1815, and died 15 February, 1818, at the age of 30.