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Gaine s paper, whether Mr. Seabury or not I will not
pretend to say, had charg d Dr. Ch y in plain
terms with "many falshoods"; and particularly in
saying that " all the candidates for holy orders in the
church of England have the expence of their voyages
home paid by the Society, &c." A gentleman who
declares himself to be a member of the church of
England and of the Society, from a manly and disin
terested regard to truth, and without designing to
enter into a controversy, laid open the unfairness of
this scribbler ; and by a just quotation from the Dr s
pamphlet shows that he did not say that such candi
dates have in fact the expences of their voyages home
paid, but that the Society had "assured them that
their expences in going to England and returning
from thence should be defray d by them. " - That the
Society did actually lay themselves under such an
obligation appears by a pamphlet entitled an account
of the Society for propagating the gospel in foreign
parts publish d in 1706, which expressly mentions
such an order ; and this order was afterwards con-
firm d by a subsequent order of the Society to repub-
lish the same pamphlet, as appears by an abstract of
the proceedings of the Society annexed to Dr. Ken-
nett s sermon publish d in the year 1712 So that
unless any one can make it appear that the Society
have since revok d that order, which I presume can
not be done, it is plain that the Dr. spoke the truth,
and therefore ought not to have been charg d with

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 325

falshood Now Mr. Seabury, to use your own lan
guage, " indulge me in one supposition" " and remem
ber it is only a supposition." Suppose that you
yourself were this unfair story-teller, and that you
had " very decently for a Clergyman "charg d the Dr.
with saying what he never did say, and what you
should affirm was not true, might not I upon the sup
position retort upon you, with as much justice as
in a similar case you have done the Dr, and say
that in your opinion " prevarication and lying in a
good cause" (where Episcopacy is concern d) "is

But should I or any one else be so very candid as
to suppose that you are not the author of the afore
said scandalous libel against the Dr, would it with
certainty be concluded from such a supposition only
that you were not ? I believe none would draw such
a conclusion. By parity of reason then no man
would conclude that you were the author merely
because another had said that he supposd Mr.
S b ry wrote it ; and if you thought that no one
clergyman but yourself could be intended by the
gutted name, and that it was a scandal to you to be
even suspected of having written such a base false
hood as it certainly was, would not a short declaration
to the contrary publish d by you with a spirit of
meekness, becoming a minister of religion, have
remov d all suspicion of it ? If your character stands
fair in your neighbourhood where you are known,
such a declaration wou d have been sufficient to have
vindicated you ; and " the good people far and wide",
most of whom in all likelihood had never heard of


you before, wou d have been satisfy d that the gen
tleman who wrote the letter was either mistaken in
his supposition that you were the man, or that by the
gutted name he did not intend Mr. Seabury, but
some other person ; unless perhaps Mr. Seabury s
professing to be an occasional writer in Mr. Tickle s
harmless and chaste paper might leave some room to
doubt of the sincerity of his declaration Had you
thus acted, you would have discovered an openess
and simplicity becoming your station. But by your
conduct, it plainly appears that your design was not
altogether to clear your own character, but to wound
the Dr s, who never did you any harm and by
bringing a railing accusation against him, you have
attacked him with a weapon which he does not care
to employ for as archbishop Tillotson, upon Michael
the archangel declining to bring a railing accusation
against the Devil, finely observes, had they fought
at that weapon, Satan would certainly have been too
hard for the archangel. By such treatment, you have,
Mr. Seabury "aye you have," to borrow from your
own polite manner of addressing, forfeited all right to
the credit of the publick, when you affirm that you
were not the author of the first scandalous abuse of
the Dr; for there is nothing to prove your innocence
in this particular, but your own affirmation, and you
yourself refuse to admit in a similar case, a much
stronger proof, I mean the affirmation of Dr. Chauncy.
It is particularly base in you, and let me tell you,
has exposed you to the just censure of the good
people far and wide, to insinuate that the Doctor
had a design to impose upon the world, by " suffixing "

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 327

the letters B.W. to his friend s anonimous epistle ;
in order that it might be believed to be written by
Benning Wentworth, Esq 1 ; a gentleman who resides
in Portsmouth, and is a member of the Society
Hereupon you take upon yourself to charge him in
effect with nothing less than forgery, by introducing
as similar to it, a story of John a Nokes and Tom
a Stiles, which you tell us with a ridiculous affectation
of ease and humour. John a Nokes you say was
indicted for forging and fixing the name of Tom a
Stiles to a Bank Note, and after accommodating
every circumstance of the story as nearly as you
could to the Dr s case, you conclude with saying,
that " in such a case a man might chance (mark d for a
pun) to suffer the penalty the law inflicts for forgery."
Let me now ask you Mr. Seabury, whether you did
not design that the reader should understand this
case to be exactly parallel with the Dr s? If you
did not, it was impertinent for you to mention it
but if you did, what was it but holding up the
Dr. to the world in the same light with a villain
who in your opinion was guilty of forgery? And is
not this a mean and rascally way of attacking a
gentleman s character? Does it not show plainly
that you dare not speak out what the malignancy of
your heart had dictated, and that you were more
afraid of the lash of the law, than the just censures of
good men or even the remonstrances of your own
mind and all this was said immediately after you
had endeavoured to exculpate yourself from an ac
cusation of having charged the Dr. with forgery

1 Governor of New Hampshire, 1741-1766.


This is just such bare-faced shuffling as is before
hinted at, when in your Letter you insinuate that Dr.
Ch y had u some thirty or more years ago
preached a sermon in justification of prevaricating
and lying and then tell us that it is all supposition,
and that possibly you fixed upon the particular instance
of preaching, by the same kind of chance that directed
the Dr. to the two Letters B.W. while you were at
the same time endeavouring to make it appear that
he could not but have a particular and wicked design
in chusing them ; though while you have managed
your cause with the heart, you have evidently dis
covered that you want the head, of a Jesuit. But to
the story of Tom a Stiles. Pray Mr. Seabury, is
there no difference between one man s affixing two
letters of the alphabet to an anonymous letter, and
another s writing the real name of a person at full
length, as in the case you mention Does B.W. as
certainly denote Banning Wentworth, as T-o-m a
S-t-i-1-e-s denotes Tom a Stiles Your pretended
parallel then, illucidates nothing but the baseness
of your intention, and the malignancy of your
heart. But you say that the person was described,
as a member of the Society, and no other name
on the Society s list had B.W. for its initials;
therefore the Dr. must intend that Benning Went
worth should be thought to be the writer of the letter
signed B.W. The Dr. tells us that " he had no
view in the choice of those letters, but to avoid the
name of the real author," which he had a right to
conceal ; and every one who is acquainted with the
Dr. or knows his character will believe him Besides

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 329

there are no two letters in the alphabet but may be
the initials of some person, and probably of some
member of the society ; and therefore had any other
two letters been thought of, it might have given the
same umbrage to some such jealous head as Mr. Sea-
bury And he may stretch his imagination as much as
he pleases, to account for the choice of two such distant
letters in the alphabet, as B & W, perhaps after all,
it may be supposd by those who have not seen the
Dr s explanation of his own view, that it was design d
to set fools to guessing To the immortal honor of
Mr. Seabury, it has occasionally produced a speci
men of his excellent knack at punning, which will
entitle him to the character of the facetious 3*. Sea-
bury of punning memory.

But I would ask you, Mr. Seabury, Did you not
see the Doctor s letter to Mr. Rodgers of New-York,
wherein he expressly declares, that the letter sign d
B.W. was written and put into his hands by an in
habitant of the town of Boston f Could you then
without breach of charity think it was wrote by a
gentleman who is not an inhabitant of Boston, but of
Portsmouth, even though the Printer told you, as I
suppose he honestly believed, that it was wrote by
Benning Wentworth, Esq ; This perhaps you 11 say
was a private letter, and therefore could not be satis
factory to the Public who had never seen it allowed
But did not the Dr. as soon as he was put in mind,
tho in a very indecent manner by you, that Benning
Wentworth, Esq ; was a member of the Society, in
order to prevent the appropriation of the letter to
that gentleman, take the first opportunity, publickly


to declare, that he had no such intention ? that he
never before knew that he was a member of the
society that his friend who put the letter into his
hands, allowed him to make what use of it he pleased
that as it had neither date nor signature, he was
pleased to put one to it, and send it to be published
in New- York, to detect the falshood of one Mr.
S b ry, as the author no doubt for some good
reason supposed ; and that by mere accident he sub
joined the signature B.W. without a tho t of Benning
Wentworth, Esq ; tho they happened, or to use a
low pun of Mr. Seabury, chanced to be the initials of
that gentleman s name Could any thing be more
ingenuous It was strictly agreeable to the Dr s
remarkable honesty and candor ; and I dare say, was
satisfactory to the hon. gentleman himself, as well as
all the good people far and wide Little then, very
little needs the Dr. to trouble himself with what Mr.
Seabury or any other angry and railing scribbler may
think of it. He must indeed be out of his senses to
have attempted a fallacy, which he might have been
assured could easily and would certainly have been
detected. Did ever any man before Mr. Seabury,
who had any sense of his own character, so expose
himself to the Publick, as strongly to insinuate, while
he did not dare to affirm it, that a gentleman was
chargeable with FORGERY, merely for affixing to a
paper, in a publick dispute, that had been carried on
by anonimous writers, two letters of the alphabet, which
happen d to be the initials of another gentleman s
name If this were allow d, what character would be
safe ? But it would be ridiculous to attempt a for-

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 331

mal proof that such treatment must be to the highest
degree base & infamous.

I shall not think it worth my while to remark
upon your pert behaviour towards your superior, and
a gentleman who is your Father in age. I know the
Dr. will freely forgive you this wrong ; tho I think
it not improper to tell you that a spark of modesty
at least, would be more becoming my young gentle
man Your stile and manner will never make you a
model for elegance But this is below notice Truth
Good humour and good breeding Mr. Seabury,
and let me add, Rev. Sir, the simplicity and godly
sincerity which the gospel requires, would have
aton d for all your defects as a fine writer : Here
you have grosly fail d : Impell d as I am afraid by
the vain hope of becoming a smart disputant It is
apparent that the letter sign d B.W. which has so
much inflam d your resentment, is perfect modesty
in comparison with the other suppos d to be written
by Mr. ^ b ry : And will not the world judge,
from the virulence which you have discover d in your
letters to the Dr. imder your own hand, that you
were fully capable of such a performance. The man
who can wantonly lay such a heap of gross charges
as fraud, forgery, villainy, scandal, falshood, base
ness, all in a breath upon a gentleman of a long
established character, only for proving to the world
that Mr. S b ry or some one else had publickly
and wilfully uttered a slanderous falshood of him ;
I say such a man, in my opinion, would not scruple
to publish any defamation I shall therefore advise
you Mr. Seabury to retire into your study if you have


such an apartment, reflect upon what you have wrote,
and let your next occasional epistle to squire Tickle
be an humble and penitent acknowledgement to the
Dr. and to the publick also, whom you have grosly
affronted : For however disagreable it may be to you
to hear it repeated, your loud and indecent brawling,
as far as it has been attended to, has certainly " dis
turbed the quiet of this country." Your s,


Boston , March 23, 7769.

[MS., Samuel Adams Papers, Lenox Library, vol. i.]

BOSTON April 8 1769

SIR- n

I have the honor of inclosing to you, by the Direc
tion of the Town of Boston, 2 their humble dutifull &
loyal Petition to the Throne, for a redress of their
Grievances ; & to request that you would do them
the singular favor, of presenting it with your own
hand to his Majesty.

You are not insensible Sir, how greatly distressing
it must be to a free People, to have Troops quarterd
in the very heart of their City, exercising a Discipline,
with all the Severity which may be necessary in a
Garrison : Such is the misfortune of this Town ;
and these Troops, it is said were orderd to be here
at this time, because the State of the Town was such,

1 1726-1802; member of Parliament, 1761-1790, through the influence of
Shelburne ; vice-treasurer for Ireland and privy councillor under the adminis
tration of Pitt.

J Cf. Boston Record Commit siongrs Report, vol. xvi., p. 274.

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 333

as required the military Aid to protect the Kings
Officers & preserve the peace. And what greatly
adds to the misfortune of the Town, is a well
grounded Intelligence, that the R l Hon. the House
of Lords have had such Accounts before them, as to
induce their Lordships to pass a Censure upon the
Town, as having been in a State of Disorder &

Conscious of their own Innocence and under the
strongest Apprehension, that they have been greatly
misrepresented to his Majestys Ministers, by some
of the principal Servants of the Crown & others
here, whose Stations & Connections may give them
weight, it is the earnest Desire of the Town, that
you w d employ your great Influence to remove from
the mind of our Sovereign his ministers & parlia
ment the unfavorable Sentiments that have been
formd, of their Conduct ; or at least to obtain for
them the Knowledge of their accusers & the matters
alledgd against them, and an opportunity of vindicat
ing themselves.

Such a generous Interposition, in Behalf of this
much distressd & injurd, tho truly loyal Town, will
add to the obligations, which they are already under
to you, of which they will always retain a gratefull

It has been long apprehended that the publick
transactions & general State of the Town as well as
the Behavior of particular persons have been greatly
misrepresented to his Majestys Ministers by some of
the principal Servants of the Crown & others here,
whose Stations Connections may give them weight.


Can it be imagind Sir that Administration could en
tertain an opinion of the Town as being in a State of
Disobedience to all Law & Gov 1 & in Consequence
thereof order the military power to the aid of civil
authority, but from what was judgd the best Intelli
gence, transmitted by persons in the highest Trust &
Confidence & from whom the most impartial Ac
counts are always to be expected. These Appre
hensions are greatly strengthend by the unexpected
favor of a Gentleman of Character in London who
has been so kind as to procure & transmit to his
Majestys Council of the province certain Letters from
Governor Bernard to the Earl of Hillsborough to
gether with one from General Gage to the same
noble Lord. 1 These Letters have represented the
proceedings of the Council in such a Light, as alarms
their Attention : And the Character of the Town is
so deeply affected by them, as to evince the propriety
of the prayer of the petition that they may be favord
with Copies of all Gov r Bernards Letters, the Me
morials of the Commissioners of the Customs here
& other papers of the same Import. In short Sir
the Representative Body of the province for years
past, from Extracts of Letters from the principal
Secretarys of State to Gov r Bernard occasionally
laid before them, have seen reason to conclude that
their own publick Conduct & the Behavior of their
Constituents, have been unfairly represented even
to his Majesty himself, by which they have unfor
tunately sufferd the royal Displeasure. Upon such
occasions they have thought it their inclispensible

1 See below, page 398.

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 335

Duty, to intreat his Majestys Ministers that no Rep
resentations might further operate against them till
they should be made acquainted with their nature
& tendency & answer for themselves. Such a request
tho never granted, must be allowed to be highly rea
sonable : for the world will judge, whether it is con
sistent with the plainest rules of Law and Justice, to
condemn persons unheard, especially upon the Evi
dence of those who have made them selves a party, &
whose Being, at least the Being of their Importance,
depends either upon their Secrecy, or a manly Sup
port of their Testimony.

It is said that Gov r Bernard has expressd an Un
easiness that Letters wrote by him in Confidence
should be made publick. Whether this be fact or
not I will not pretend to say ; but surely Justice
loudly called for the publication of those Letters at
least so far as that his Majestys Council of this prov
ince & the Town sh d be apprisd of their Contents.
There are some things in them which it can be made
clearly to appear, are very gross & material Mistakes.
It is a very great Misfortune, when there is no sort
of Confidence, to say the least, between a Gov r of a
Province & the people over whom he presides ; Gen
eral Gage very probably, formd his opinion of the
Town upon the Informations of Gov r Bernard ; which
in truth is the highest, & ought to be the best Au
thority in the Province. Upon less Authority it w d
seem very extraordinary that a Gentleman who had
resided but a few Weeks in the Town in which time
there had not been the least Disorder, sh d positively
declare to a Minister of State that " in truth there is


very little Gov* in Boston." That "the Town &
the province had a very long time been influenced by
mad people." That their intentions at their Town
Meetings, before his residence in the Town were sus
picious, & that he was happy, the Troops from Hali
fax arrivd at the time they did

[Boston Gatette, April 24, 1769.]

Messieurs EDES & GILL,

GENERAL Gage in his letter to the Earl of Hills-
borough, is pleased to tell his Lordship that " in truth
there is very little government in Boston " ; that " their
Intentions were suspicious"; and That, "he was
happy the Troops from Halifax arrived at the time they
did " Some Gentlemen might perhaps have been a
little more cautious of coming to such a Conclusion,
and of writing to a minister of state an article of intel
ligence, which most certainly must affect the Repose
of the Sovereign as well as the Happiness of the Sub
jects There was not the least Disturbance in this
town during the short time of the General s residence
in it, except what was occasion d by the happy arrival
of those troops from Halifax No man s station
ought to exempt him from being called upon by a
loyal people, either to make good or retract his
Charge against them as being " suspicious " in their
"intentions," at an open legal meeting: and I dare
challenge the General to prove by fair argument that
the publick transactions of the Town on the i3th of

1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 337

September last, 1 or the subsequent proceedings of the
Convention, were " dangerous " as he is pleas d to call
them, or that they in the least Degree militated with
any Law or the British Constitution : As these tran
sactions were all made publick to the world, it is pre-
sum d that the General read them and well consider d
them before he form d his own judgment, especially
as he tho t proper to communicate his judgment to his
Majesty s minister ; and therefore it is with great pro
priety expected that he will candidly publish the Rea
sons, upon which he grounded his Judgment, or he
must allow the impartial part of mankind in Britain
as well as America to conclude that it was not well
founded. With respect to the general state of the
town and province, the absurdity of the Opinions of
his Majesty s Council, and the Behaviour of the Jus
tices of the peace, of all which the General writes
with great freedom, it is probable that he had his In
formation from Governor BERNARD, and his few ad
herents in the province. This it must be own d is the
highest authority, but it may not be the best. If
General Gage had turn d a little of his attention to the
publick Writings of the General Assembly of the
province, throughout the greater part of Governor
Bernard s administration, he would have found that
there had been a constant Jealousy among the Gen
erality of the People in every part of the province,
that the national Resentment against this Colony in
particular, was owing to the Misrepresentations of the
Governor himself ; and this might have induced the
General to have used some Caution how he entertain d

VOL. I. 22.

1 See above, page 241.


an ill opinion of the people, but especially how he
founded his representations to a minister of state of
their temper and behaviour, altogether upon the De
claration of Governor Bernard and his friends ; for
when Contests run high, the proverb, however homely
it may be, will be allow d by impartial men to be just,
that "one story is good, until another is told." If
good King David was in haste when he once said
that all men were Liars ; yet surely the General has
studied mankind more thorowly, than to suppose it
altogether impossible for a Governor of a province to
misrepresent and abuse the people even to the Ear
of Majesty itself. The History of his own ; times may
confute such an opinion : And should it finally ap
pear by the states of facts sent home in the last ship,
by his Majesty s Council and the Town of Boston,
that Governor Bernard, is an instance of the Truth of
it, I would only ask, upon a candid supposition that
the General grounded his Letter upon what such a
Governor told him, What Reparation he can make
without publickly acknowledging his mistake ? If the
General has characterized the Town and Province
upon his own observation, I appeal to the candid
world, whether the bare affirmation of a Gentleman,
unsupported by any Evidence, can be deem d suf
ficient to blast the Reputation of a Province.


1769] SAMUEL ADAMS. 339

[Boston Gazette, May I, 1769.]

To Sir ,

As an individual Inhabitant of this Province, tho
obscure and mean, I beg leave to present my con
gratulatory Compliment to your - on the high
honor you now sustain, of a BARONET of Great-
Britain. This is a Promotion which the friends of
Government, or which is the same thing, your own
friends have long thought you justly merited : And
even your enemies and the factious Leaders them
selves must confess, that the eminent Services you
have done for ti\t present M y have been such as

my L of H that Patron of true worth could

not have fail d to set forth in the most distinguishing

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