worthy of all grateful acknowledgment. It is, indeed, a rare and glo-
rious picture. The bishop is represented at full length and in com-
plete canonicals, with silver buckles in his shoes, sitting in an antique
chair by the side of an altar, 'for high communion meetly spread,'
in some venerable Gothic cathedral. The figure and all the accom-
paniments beautifidly harmonize. Some lines which I wrote on first
seeing bishop White, at the opening of the convention in 1832,*
* For these Uues, see page 126.
1844.] ST. PETER'S, AUBURN. 321
seemed to describe the scene so well, that I accompanied my acknowl-
edgments with a copy."
He commences his next lettei- with an alarm from the parsonage
on account of the severe sickness of his little daughter ; but provi-
dentially, before closing the letter, he is enabled to announce that
her relief has been as prompt as the attack was sudden. In the same
letter he thus speaks of a recent family affliction, in the death of
Dr. Thomas O'Hara Croswell, of Catskill : "It adds to the gloom
and depression of this week, that we have by this mail received the
tidings of our dear uncle's departure, in Catskill. They have of
course disturbed me, and, like all of you, I shall be anxious to hear
the particulars. I have often said this winter that I would see him
again, God willing, before he died ; and that if I ever left my con-
finement here, I should not return without going to Catskill. A
wise Providence has ordered otherwise. I hope, however, that we
may be permitted to embrace in that world where there is no dis-
ease, old age, sorrow, sickness, or separation."
Such an extract as the following, from a letter of January 22,
serves to show how his feelings were affected by the peculiarities of
his location : "I do not grow any less impatient ā or rather, it
would be more Christian to say, less unwilling ā to entertain the
thought of withdrawing from this field of duty to one within easier
reach of ' home ' ; since the severity of the cold has, for the last
three days, made our house uncomfortable, almost beyond the
power of our fuel to mitigate it, and occasioning concern for our
Uttle one which is at times almost too absorbing. My chief objec-
tion ā for there are minor ones ā is, not that the post is isolated,
and the incumbent buried alive, . . . but it is that I am cut
off from all access to the friends, domestic and clerical, with whom
the flower of my life passed so happily, and can only visit them at
long intervals, and at the expense of nearly a third of my income."
The following incidental remarks, in a letter of February 13, to
his friend Miss C , are worth transcribing, if it were only to
give one more proof of the prevailing sentiments of his heart with
regard to pastoral duty. Speaking of his frequent calls to the
abodes of sickness, poverty, and affliction, he says, " Here I am
made to realize, every week, that it is my own fault if the vocation
of a man of prayer, and a son of consolation, do not cause the
abodes of the diseased, through the influences of the Holy Spirit, to
be indeed ' bright, with something of celestial light.' I confess this
part of my duty grows more delightful to me from its double
eflect ā as I minister not only to those who are before me, but live
over again, in spirit, the scenes in which I so long lived, and moved,
and had my being, in a land that is very far oflf, in one sense, and
very near in another. Doubt not that there is much in these rela-
tions to keep you all in mind. In the conscious glory which I have
322 MEMOIR OF WILLIAM CROSWELL. [1844.
seen shed, as it were, round ' cold huts, where poor men lie,' as we
united in the iioly ordinances of our religion, I have been convinced
that I did not greatly mistake my vocation in supposing that the
wishes and desires of my will were to preach the gospel to the
sons and daughters of poverty and tribulation, in the capacity of
city missionary. I covet no higher earthly calling, no deeper
The following production is transcribed in the same form in which
it was transmitted to his father and some other correspondents,
not omitting the apology with which he saw fit to introduce it :
" The editor of the ' Evergreen,' (a monthly periodical then pub-
lished at New Haven,) having requested me to contribute something
for his work, he is quite welcome to what I have here written. 1
do not wish my name to be connected with it, or any other signa-
ture. ' For if, as I do hope, the vein be good,' the world will find
it out quite soon enough ; and if it be a failure, let it perish anony-
mously." And to his friend Miss H , to whom he also sent a
copy, he says, " I always see reason to regret it whenever I am
tempted to depart from simple ballad rhymes, whose freedom from
pretension saves them from criticism, and carries the popular feel-
ing in their favor. Such is human nature, however, to be always
beset with a morbid desire to do something different from what we
can do most easily and acceptably. Imperfect as is the execution,
however, I would not wish the sentiment changed in any particular."
BISHOP GRISWOLD'S MEMORIAL.
" As Elisha witnessed the translation of Elijah, bo we coTild hardly hope
any thing better for his successor than that tlie mantle of this our father
in Israel might rest upon him." W. C.
"I was present, with several of the clergy, about ten minutes after his
death, which, as you know, took place in Bishop Easteukk's study. It was
a scene long to be remembered. There lay the good old man, extended at
full length on the floor, more majestic and commanding of presence in
death than I had ever beheld him in life. His silver hairs spread a kind
of halo round his head, and his blue cloak wrapped gracefully round his
limbs, with his arms crossed on his bosom, he looked like a Christian
' warrior taking his rest.' Peace to his ashes ! "
Letter from Rev. J. L. Watsoit.
The funeral year has through its circle run,
And Memory's spells the solemn scene renew,
When, like Elijah, thy good mission done,
Leaving thy mantle with thy chosen one,*
* "The desire of his soul liad just been accomplished. He had seen the
council of his diocese, which had been assembled at his own earnest summons,
meeting in harmonious brotherhood, and appointing his official successor.
And when all the preparatory measures had been completed, he had, in con.-
1844.] ST. PETER'S, AUBURN. 323
Thy sainted spirit to its source withdrew ;
And Reverence still, m many a prophet's son,
To Bethel comes, and stands afar to view,
And prays that he on whom thy titles rest
May be both with thy robe and with thy spirit blest.
Methinks I see thee, as I oft have seen
In other days, so chastened and resigned,
Serving the Lord, as with a prophet's mien,
Or Paul's, in all humility of mind.
I see thy trials on thy faded cheek,
But thine endurance in thy brow serene,
Thy look elate, but yet subdued and meek,
Thy seraph smile, and sweet, unconscious air
That threw a glory round thine apostolic chair.
Long had I loved thee with a filial heart,
And mourn thee with a deep and sorrowing love ā
Thrice happy, might I hope to bear a part
In the same mansions of the house above-
May I be with thee, where thy lot shall be.
And grow more like thee, in thy simple guise,
Thy unaffected truth's sincerity.
And all that made so lovely in our eyes
The quiet, childlike heart, which God doth highly prize.
Father, whose life was thus devoid of pride,
Thus lowly wise, on winning souls intent.
Let not thy ransomed spirit now be tried,
Among the myriads of the glorified.
By any pledge of love on thee misspent.
Thou wouldst not ask a costly monument,
Nor joy to see the storied rock assume
Thy living shape ; or sculptured figures, bent
In mimic sorrow o'er a garnished tomb,
Enshrine thy place of rest amid the minster's gloom.
pany with, some of his brethren in office, and in the presence of his assembled
clergy, performed the last finishing and apostolic ceremonial. And now,
having been permitted to behold all things done, he walks to and fro, for a
few weeks, in the midst of us, and then, in the fulness of years, he passes
instantly away, and enters into an everlasting rest from all liis labors ; and to
invest -with stUl further interest and solemnity the closing moments of his
career, it is so ordered, in the course of Providence, that his spirit shall
escape from its earthly prison house beneath the very roof of him who had
been destined to stand in his room and continue his labors." ā Bishop East-
btjrn's Sermoii at the interment of Bishop Gkiswold.
324 MEMOIR OF WILLIAM CROSWELL. [1844.
But rather, as on earth thou oft hast prayed,
Wouldst pray, that all who loved thee, far or nigh, ā
Priest, Levite, elder, matron, youth, and maid,
On whom thy hands in solemn rites were laid, ā
Might grow in every grace as years went by,
And, stirring up the gift through thee conveyed,
Have their blest record with thine own on high ;
And walking in the steps which thou hast trod,
Be thy memorial dear, alike to man and God.
February 15, 1844, ANxrvERSAHY of Bishop Geis-wold's death.
The following passage occurs, in a letter of March 4, to a very
intimate friend, to whom he had just been speaking of the severe
losses which liis parish had sustained, by the death and removal of
some of its most prominent and useful members, and of the tendency
to indisposition in himself and family : " After Easter, we hope to
proceed easterly ; nor should we greatly regret it, if it were clearly
manifested that the Lord had need of me there. I have ceased to
be fastidious about my sphere of labor. Any where, citj or country,
where I might seem fitted for usefulness, and where my father's house
and the scenes of my childhood were accessible without great diffi-
culty, would fulfil all the desires of my heart."
He expresses similar sentiments in a subsequent letter to his
father, adding, " I flatter myself that, with my ministerial expe-
rience and large variety of sermons, I am not without some apti-
tude for usefulness almost any where." He speaks at the same time
very affectionately of his parish, and only regrets that the appear-
ances of spiritual growth are not more promising ; and after alluding
to some very humble positions in the neighborhood of his early
home, he says, " You may be amused at all this castle building ;
but you cannot say that it is on an extravagant plan ; and I hope it
is not otherwise than innocent, and will do no harm."
The remaining letters of the month relate chiefly to plans and
suggestions with regard to an anticipated eastern visit, (vhich seems
to have been deemed essential to the restoration of his wife's health.
" I never saw her (he says) quite so prostrated with nervous debility,
having been hardly able to sit up the whole day, for the last three
days. Nothing, we are satisfied, will be so likely to prove beneficial
as to change the scene for the better. I flatter myself that there is
no impediment to her speedy restoration wliich this will not be suf-
ficient to remove."
The Easter services being brought to a close, he found it expedi-
ent to make immediate arrangements for the proposed journey. He
had designed to defer it to a more favorable season. But he says,
"I have reversed the decision so recently made, and yield to the
apparent necessity of translating my wife at once to the restorative
1844.] ST. PETER'S, AUBURN. 325
influences of her native air. I think there is nothing in her case
hut extreme debility and nervous prostration, which the journey and
the visit will he sufficient to remove, if they are not delayed." Ac-
cordingly they left Auburn on the 17th of April, and, taking Utica
and Albany on their way, arrived at Boston on the 19th, the mother
and child seeming no worse for the ride. Allowing himself an ab-
Bence from his parish of only a few days, including two Sundays,
he divided his time very pleasantly among his friends in Boston,
Hartford, and New Haven, and returned again to his parish on the
8th of May ; leaving his wife and child to prolong their visit in
Boston for an indefinite period.
On his arrival at his parish, his attention was immediately en-
grossed by his preparations for the bishop's visitation, which took
place on Sunday, the 12th of May. The class presented for contir-
mation consisted of only six persons. " The number (he says, in
a letter to his father) might have been larger, had I had more time;
but all was done that could be done in the interval ; and brother
Patterson had fully supplied my lack in the way of pulpit duty."
During his absence, and for a few days after his return, the parson-
age had been occupied by Mr. Patterson and family ; and he
speaks in terms of strong regret at the idea of parting with them.
" I expect (he says) to renew some of the trials of my bachelorship
My godson, George Herbert Patterson, Mr. P.'s only child, is
a fine little boy, just beginning to interest himself in the Church. I
have given him, as a parting gift, a copy of the Prayer Book, with
those memorable words of his great namesake ā ' O, give me the
prayers of my mother the Church ; no other prayers can equal
these.' This is, after all, the only presentation volume, next to the
Bible, that I take satisfaction in bestowing ; knowing that there indeed
is spirit, and there is life. As I notice the happy effects of such
tokens in enlisting the interest of a child in these services, I won-
der what substitute those people have who despise this method of
training up the young in the way they should go." After speaking
of the good reports of the mother and child from Boston, he adds,
with a feeling which every parent will know how to appreciate,
" The void and loneliness occasioned by their absence, the deserted
nursery, the empty crib, the unoccupied high chair, the silence of
the places that but recently echoed to the child's merry laugh, sadly
recall the time when the child of hope and prayers went to heaven,
and they who were lovely in their lives, in their death were not di-
We here introduce some lines written on his Uttle daughter Man/s
second Birthday, June 4, and sent to his friends at home, and to Miss
H , of Boston, with introductory explanations, which give to
them a pecuhar and touching interest. Miss H had just been
bereaved of a beloved relation ; and these are the strains of con-
326 IklEMOIR OF WILLIAM CROSWELL. [1844.
doleuce in which he addresses her : " Appreciating the character
of your dear aunt Mary, as approaching very nearly to the per-
fection of spiritual beauty, I can enter in some measure into the
feelings of those who will mourn for her many days. To realize
that you will no more see on earth that well-beloved face, that has
been associated from infancy with all dear domestic delights ā sym-
pathizing in all your joys and sorrows ā into whose faithful ear you
could breathe all the workings of your aftections ā and upon whose
tried Christian experience you could safely rely for spiritual guidance
ā this is indeed bereavement. But you are familiar, also, with the
considerations by which grief is to be soothed and moderated. ' For,'
says holy Bishop Taylor, ' if the holy dead did die in the Lord, it
is an ill expression of aflection to weep uncomfortably at a change
that hath carried her to .a state of high felicity. Something is to be
given to nature and the honor of the deceased friend ; for that man
is esteemed miserable for whom no friend or relation sheds a tear
or pays a solemn sigh. I desire to die a dry death ; but I am not
desirous to have a dry funeral : some flowers sprinkled on my grave
would be well and comely, and a soft shower to turn those flowers
into a springing memory.' Some such humble flowers I would fain
sprinkle on aunt Mary's grave, knowing that soft showers will not
be wanting to turn them into a springing memory. May her happy
and holy life and death be sanctified in the hearts of all who knew
her, and lead those who survive by the new and living way opened
in the blood of Jesus to the same triumph of grace over nature.
In musing on the birth of another Mary, I could not but blend the
thoughts of the race that was finished with that which was begun.
To those who understand the allusion they may have an interest,
which they could not claim on other grounds, and which will be with
you, I trust, a sufl&cieut apology for filling the rest of the sheet with
God, who on our household
Thus far hast fondly smiled,
1 thank thee for thy choicest boon-
My precious, only child.
And pray thee that the favor
Which has so richly blest
Her sunny days of infancy.
May shine on all the rest.
I have not asked for beauty,
Fair cheek, or golden tress ;
Though all that is within ine melts
At woman's loveliness.
1844.J ST. PETER'S, AUBURN. 337
I have not asked for riches,
Nor even wealth of mind ;
Though doting on intelligence,
Pure, lofty, and refined.
Those better gifts I covet.
Which thou dost bid us seek ā
A soul serene, affectionate.
And resolute, yet meek.
The meetness of the children
Who shared our Lord's caress.
And whose surpassing excellence
Is early holiness.
O, might she thus resemble
That late departed saint,
Who, worthy of Madonna's name,
I may not dare to paint !
Or catch the falling glories
Throned on that aged brow.
Which, in the multitude of peace,
Has passed from us but now.
Fain would I ask, as o'er me
That raptured image swims,
All ready with the seraph choirs
To join the heavenly hymns.
That her ' unearthly comforts,'
And looks, ' divinely mild,'
Might, by some secret sympathy.
Inspire my gracious child.
While thus, dear Lord, my musings
Have blent, in tender ties.
The child, and aged childlike friend
Whom tears shall canonize,
May the hope that both are living
And rejoicing in thy smile,
Cheer the lonely dwelling-places
Which each has left a while.
In letters to his friends, written soon after his return from his eastern
journey, there are several allusions to the state of the church in Bos-
ton, and the immediate vicinity, jilainly foreshadowing the course
which he afterwards tliought it his duty to pursue. The following, to
his excellent brother Dr. Strong, June 24, is an instance : " One
^8 MEMOIR OF WILLIAM CROSWELL. [1844.
cheering symptom in the midst of much that was of ill omen for the
Church, was the many instaiiees of enlightened and devoted attach-
ment to sound principles, which had developed themselves among
the laity since my last visit, and promising something for the exten-
sion of the Church ahout Boston, analogous to the influence of
'Young England' upon ' Old.' God grant that such instances may
be a thousand fold increased and multiplied."
The month of July passed away chiefly in solitude, and few inci-
dents occurred to break in upon his regular course of pastoral
duties. In his letters to his father, he often speaks of his loneliness,
as a fond husband and parent might be expected to speak ; and
seems impatient for the time to come when he may again visit his
eastern friends. Under these circumstances, he was well prepared to
enjoy a visit which he had rather hoped for than expected. He thus
writes, under date of " Buffalo, Sunday evening, July 28 : This is
a season of wonders. Even as I intimated, 1 have been carried
away captive by my next friend and more than brother, (Bishop
DoANE,) and I steal a moment to apprise you of the fact, before I
leave the confines of the diocese. The bishop, with his wife and
children, came to Auburn on Thursday, and passed the day, much
to our mutual delight. Next morning they set out for the Falls ;
and I found the inducements to accompany them quite irresistible,
especially as I thought it might be my only chance. We stopped
at Geneva a few hours ; reached Rochester at dark, and passed the
night. On Saturday we came on to this place. The bishop and
party are provided for at Rev. Dr. Shelton's, and I am domesti-
cated with our friend and brother of ' auld lang syne,' Rev. Ed-
ward Ingersoll. . . . The bishop threatens to take me across
the line to Toronto ; though it is quite doubtful at present whether
I accompany him any farther."
Whatever may have been his desire on this subject, he was con-
strained, it seems, to relinquish it, and return to his post. This
account of his journey is from his next letter, Auburn, August 2 :
" I have returned safe and sound, after a week of the pleasantest
journeying that I have yet had. I hasten to take up my brief line
of communication where I dropped it at Buffalo. We dropped
down the noble Niagara River, under the British flag, on Monday
morning, crossing from Schlosser to Chippewa, two miles above the
Falls, and with nothing between to save us, if any thing should
befall the steamboat. We all agreed that it was very presump-
tuous after we had safely landed, although it is done every day ;
and it is considered very important to get the first view from the
Canada side. I will not be so adventurous as to attempt a descrip-
tion, either of the Falls or the sensations they create. Enough to
say, that some of the party burst into tears, and wept like children.
After spending part of two days on one side and the other, I felt
1844.] ST. PETER'S, AUBURN. 329
that there was nothing beyond which I wislied to see ā that I had
reached the cUmax. I took my leave of tlie party on Tuesday
afternoon. The bishop and family were to go next day to Lewis-
ton, Toronto, and thence to Montreal and Quebec ; but I fear that
the rest of their route will seem tame and insipid. Niagara is a
scene to finish such an expedition withal." In a letter of the same
date to Miss Callahan, sister of Mrs. Doane, he gives a similar,
though more particular, account of this interview and journey with
the family ; and on the 8th, writing to the late Mrs. Sumner, he
remarks, " It has been a dull summer to me, with the exception
of the day that Bishop Doane and suite spent here, and the week in
which I accompanied him, for lack of a chaplain, to the Great
Falls." At this date he was still suffering from severe illness ; but
he expresses a hope that his next will be written " with a steadier
hand. At present," he says, " it is less so than my head ; and
there have been days when I could not write at all."
He was now contemplating his eastern journey ; but being
detained for a few days, he attended the consecration of the new
church at Geneva, as well as the last meeting of the standing com-
mittee before the convention. After this, having secured a supply
for his pidpit during his absence, he took his departure on the 20th.
" I have made provision," he says, " for three Sundays, which, if
we return at all, as I suppose we shall, must suffice."
The following passage from a letter of the 16th, though relating
to a private and family concern, is nevertheless so characteristic of
his feelings and views on a very interesting subject, that there is a
pleasure in transcribing it. His cousin, the wife of the Rev. Henry
Fitch, had been bereaved of a little daughter whose name was
Jane. On the birth of another daughter, he presented his congrat-
ulations through his father, adding this touching injunction: "I
hope she will call her little one Mary. At least, that she will not
be so unchristian or inconsiderate as to give it the name and the
place of the beloved departed, who is still as really existing, as
part of the family, as if she were but absent on a visit.
" 'Twould seem to blot her from her place.
Though she, to fill one bitter cup,
Hath died, we must not thus efface
Her memory. No ! we reckon up
The lost, who slumber in their grave,
As ours. We cite their several names.
Which He, who now hath taken, gave.
And love as well the absent claims
As this new born. 'Twould give me pain
To hear her call another Jane."
330 MEMOIR OF WILLIAM C110S\^T:LL. [1844.
He next dates from Boston, where he arrived, with his little
family, on the 21st, and met with a reception peculiarly gratifying
to his feelings. So warm and cordial were the greetings of liis old
friends and former parishioners, ā so familiar were the scenes and
the faces round him, ā that it seemed difficult, for a time, to realize
that he had ever been absent from them. The whole four years
appeared to have passed away like a dream. On Sunday, the 1st
of September, he was induced to officiate in his old church ; and
here, as an evidence of his welcome, and as if to revive the recol-