William Evans.

The Friends' library : comprising journals, doctrinal treatises, and other writings of members of the religious Society of Friends (Volume 1) online

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" The city of Hamburg is said to contain
one hundred and fifty thousand inhabitants ;
ten thousand of these are French emigrants.
Owing to its being a neutral city and free
port, there is abundance of shipping in the
harbour from almost all nations. It is go-
verned by its own magistrates, but pays some
tribute to the Emperor. The people enjoy the
free exercise of religious opinions, yet few
appear much concerned about it in any form ;
their places of worship, though chiefly Lu-
theran and Calvinist, are furnished with cru-
cifixes, likenesses of saints, &c.; we found,
however, some pious people among them, to
whom we felt much love. The people in a
general way, dress as their ancestors did
several ages past, the Dutch not being given
to change. The streets are narrow, have
few foot-ways, and being every where pa-
ved with pebbles, it makes walking tiresome.
Altona contains about forty thousand inhabi-
tants, and is, of the two, the pleasanter city.

" Fourth-day, 24th. Our friends the Van-
dersmissens having sent their coach, some of
us paid them a visit, and drank coffee, though
it was but about eleven o'clock. The Ger-
mans think that coffee can never come out of
season. David Sands and myself had an-
other opportunity with our friend Heltman ;
he and his wife are loving solid people, but
low in the world, yet we hoped were near the
kingdom ; he embraced and parted with us in
tears, recommending us to continue faithful
unto God to the end; and said his days were
drawing near to a close, but he lived in the
hope, that through the Lord's mercy he should
leave the world in peace. Our landlady
imposed upon us by an unjust charge, which
for peace sake we were obliged to pay, though
it was contrary to our agreement. This is a
land of impositions on strangers. W"e hired
a boat to take us and our wagon to Harburg,
six English miles, for six dollars ; dined in
that place, at the house where we had lodg-
ed before ; the people looked pleased to see



us, and hoped to have our company again
before we left Germany. We took four post
horses, and leaving Harburg travelled through
a poor barren country, the roads sandy and
houses mean, and arrived at Walley, a vil-
lage of about six houses.

" Eighth month 26th. We were obliged to
stop on the road for our postillion to take his
bread, herring and milk, which they do in
the middle of every station, for which, and
the feed of the horses, passengers must freely
pay, or be used worse than they are. The
horses eat the same bread as the drivers.
We arrived at the gates of Zell about nine
o'clock at night, where an officer stopped us
and took our names.

" 27th. Having agreed for four small
rooms and beds, George Dillwyn and I went
into the city, like solitary pilgrims in the
midst of a strange people. It is not easy to
conceive the state of mind and mortification
that poor travellers have to pass through
daily, but more especially on entering large
cities and towns, where, at first view, all ap-
pear to be minding their own things, and
where the manners, religion and pursuits of
the people are so entirely different from ours,
and not a single inhabitant known to us ; yet
by patient waiting, the Lord hath hitherto
manifested to our comfort, that five or ten
upright hearted souls are 5^et to be found in
every place ; this hope comforted our tribula-
ted spirits in passing through the streets of
Zeli, as spectacles to the people. Having a
letter to a merchant, whose name was Hehin-
leck, we went to his house, and were received
with much civility and respect. He said, he
knew a person of our religion in town, whose
name was Dietrich, to whose house he took
us ; he proved to be a Moravian, but a kind
courteous man, and appeared to be desirous
of having some books, that he might become
better acquainted with our principles. On
conversing with a man at our lodgings, he
expressed some surprise that I who was born
in America, should be as white as a German :
such is the ignorance of many. The son of
a Calvinist minister, hearing our conversa-
tion, informed his father of us, who sent me
an invitation to come to his house, and feeling
no hesitation, I did so. I found him to be a
man of about thirty-five ; we conversed with-
out restraint, on religious subjects, about an
hour, he being of a candid, liberal mind,
fi'eely confessed that our simple manners,
peaceable principles, and refusing to take
oaths, were consistent with the Gospel and
his own private sentiments, and frequently
gave me his hand as a testimony of unity. He
called his eldest son, a pretty lad, about
twelve years old, whom I saw at our inn, and

told him to take notice what I said, that I
was one of the people called Quakers, from
America, that I did not think it right to pull
off my hat in honour to any man, but did it
only in reverence to the Divine Being ; that I
and my brethren never went to war, nor took
an oath, our yea being yea, and our nay,
nay. The lad was sober and attentive, and
remarked that he had read in the Scriptures,
a command concerning the last. We parted
lovingly, both the pastor and his wife pressing
me to come to-mori'ow.

" First-day, 28th. Several of our little
band were unwell, owing, as we supposed,
to the manner of living in this country.
Sour wine, sour beer, bread, meat and vege-
tables, form the principal articles of diet; the
meat cooked till it is ready to fall to pieces.
Coffee, which the Germans make to perfec-
tion and drink it several times in a day,
seems to be almost the only good thing at
their tables. Meat is mostly poor, and the
veal killed when it is about a week old. The
pastor and captain Kichner came to see us,
with whom we had some conversation, we
hoped profitably. In the afi;ernoon, William
Farrer and I drank coffee with them and pro-
fessor Rock, a French Calvinist minister,
who preaches in his own language to a con-
gregation, descendants of the Hugenots, who
fled here from France, in the time of the per-
secutions : he did not appear to be much con-
cerned about religion. This town, unlike those
we had before been in on this day of the
week, was everywhere exceedingly still and
orderly ; few people being in the streets or on
the public walks, which was very agreeable
to us, and what we did not expect. Spending
some time with the pastor at his house, in se-
rious conversation, I endeavoured, as well as
T was qualified, to open to him the nature of
our doctrines and practices ; he agreed, that
no man could be a Christian, but by the ope-
ration of the spirit of Christ ; yet his idea ap-
peared to be, that this spirit was so mixed and
blended with the natural faculties of the soul,
as not to be distinguishable from them, but
that it wrought our conversion and purifica-
tion in an imperceptible manner. I mentioned
to him several passages of Scripture in opposi-
tion to this opinion; and at length he confessed
he had never read of, or heard the subject so
treated before, nor so much to his satisfaction.
He said the sprinkling of infants could avail
them nothing, and that what he did in that
respect, was in conformity to the opinions of J
others, and not his own ; for if he could be- |
lieve any water baptism essential, he should
embrace the opinions of those who administered
it at mature age; and with respect to the sup-
per, he said, he did not conceive it was in-



tended to be of perpetual obligation in the
church, for that would have been perpetuating
the Passover, vi'hich our Lord was then eat-
ing, but that this and other Jewish rites he
came to fulfil and put an end to. He believed
no more was meant by our Lord's injunc-
tion, than that his disciples, as often as they
sat down to meat, should remember him, their
Lord and Master, who was now sat down to
table with them for the last time before he
was offered up. Clear it was, he said, that
it had no effect on the souls of those who ob-
served it, who remained from year to year in
their general conduct forgetful of God. Many
people, however, who took it from pious mo-
tives, he did not doubt might feel themselves
refreshed. He kindly expressed the satisfac-
tion he had felt, and near unity with me, ad-
ding with much tenderness, that it was one
thing to acknowledge sound doctrines, and
another to practise them. I returned to my
companions peaceful, and in the hope that
Truth had not suffered in the interview.

" 29th. Walked through the principal streets
of Zell, which is a fortified city, surrounded
by mounds of earth, a wide ditch, gates, &c.,
and guarded by soldiers. The promenades
around it are very fine, lined with trees and
gravelled. At this time they are suspicious
of strangers, and in addition to taking our
names at entering the gates, every inn-keeper
is obliged to return the names of his lodgers
evei'y morning to the burgomaster. The peo-
ple are quiet and respectful to us ; there is
little appearance of trade, and the market is
poor. The suburbs and city may contain
twenty thousand inhabitants. As we walked
along, a man looking pleasantly on us, we
turned about and spoke to him, with which he
seemed glad and took us into his house. He
soon opened his mind, and we found he was a
great admirer of Jacob Behmen, and had a
strong testimony against the priests, but very
fearful of them and the people, and therefore
kept himself very hidden ; which is the case
of hundreds in this country. He thought we
were one in sentiment on religion ; but on
coming to see us in the evening, we presently
found he was full of visions : though he con-
fessed freely to the truth of our doctrines and
was tender and loving, yet he spoke of having
found God in minerals, and that he was to be
found in everything ; had been made acquaint-
ed either by vision or dream, with the nature
of the Divine Being, of angels and of men, &c.
He said he had been long separated from the
common form of worship, and had but two
or three acquaintances in Zell to whom he
could speak his sentiments freely, and these
he would bring to see us in the morning. We
gave him some books and such advice as we

were favoured with, which he took kindly, and
left us in tears. Spent another hour with the
pastor, Johann Frederick Krietsch, to much

" 30th. Took leave of my friend Krietsch
and his family, with much affection on both
sides. We gave him several books. His wife
said, he had never seen a stranger that he
discovered so much affection for since she
knew him, which he confirmed, and much de-
sired we might return through Zell ; but be
that as it might, he observed, he should ever
remember with thankfulness a kind Providence
sending us there. He was a tender man, and
I hope the Divine blessing will rest upon him.
We also took leave of the family at the inn
with their good wishes. An agreeable young
woman, of a religious mind, who waited on
us during our stay, took our attention at part-
ing, and pressed our return if it were possible,
saying she would be glad to go with us to
America. The Moravian minister paid us a
visit as we were about to go off; having been
out of town for some days and just returned,
he expressed his sorrow at the shortness of the
interview. We rode through a poor country
to Hanover, and put up without the city gates,
where we had tolerable accommodations : the
landlord was a baptized Jew.

" 31st. George Dillwyn and I walked
through the town and delivered our letters of
recommendation. The city has the appear-
ance of considerable trade, chiefly carried on
by land, the river being only navigable for
flat boats in freshes. It is fortified, has many
soldiers and about thirty thousand inhabitants;
the religion generally Lutheran, but there is
one Calvinist meeting-house, and some Mora-
vians who meet privately. About their places
of worship and burying-grounds are many re-
lics of popery, some monuments and imagery
six hundred years old, or perhaps more. After-
noon, William Farrer and I walked about a
mile and a half to see the steward to the com-
missary of the port-office. He and his wife
received us kindly, and appeared much like
Friends in principle and practice. He had
been separated for some years from the com-
mon forms of religion and was a man of solid
countenance and demeanour. We spent about
an hour with them to satisfaction. He gave
us the names of several more separatists, per-
sons of religious character.

" Ninth month 1st. Our friend Shaffer visit-
ed us : the cross seems much in the way of
the few serious minds in Hanover, and they
acknowledge they feel themselves too weak to
stand forth faithfully. A person to whom we
had letters came to see us, and some of us
being unwell, occasioned as we thought by
our manner of living, he told us that dysen-



tery was very common here in the autumn,
and many are removed siiddenly, and advised
some remedy to correct the acidity of the
drinks and food which are commonly used in
this country. He appears to be a kind man
and disposed to be of use to us. The Lord
makes way for us in every place. Johann
Buchner visited us : he was many years a mu-
sician in the army, and had been in many bat-
tles ; but growing uneasy with his profession,
dropped it, and is now gardener to the king's
physician. He has been in England, and there
got acquainted with Friends and with the Me-
thodists, and speaks English a little. He gave
us an account of many exercises he had passed
through, and of his present state and opinions,
which I did not discover to be much different
from ours. He is no doubt a religious man,
and is separated from the outward forms used
here, and more bold in maintaining his testi-
mony than his companions.

" 2nd. David Sands and George Dillwyn
not being able to converse in the language,
much of the labour falls upon me, and people
frequently calling upon us, I am kept pretty
busy ; for by the time we are two or three
days in a place, we begin to find out the reli-
gious characters, and they us. We went to
see a shoemaker, a tender, seeking man, and
his wife ; both of whom were made very near
to my spirit. They had left other professors
and kept much I'etired at home. He said the
people were vain, and it hurt him to mix with
them, and that he was desirous of following
the inward Preacher, who would not deceive,
as many of the wise and learned preachers in
the world did. Then we went to an old man,
who was spoken of as being a Quaker ; he
received us kindly, but we soon found he was
not got beyond the use of water baptism, and
was one of the principal men of the few Mo-
ravians who meet here in a covert manner,
and yet continue publicly to meet the Luther-
ans. By letters received from the brethren in
America, he had understood that Friends had
supplied the Indian brethren under the care of
D. Seisberger with corn, in a time of scarcity.
I told him I was one of the Friends concerned
in that business, which made him more open,
and he seemed pleased with our company. In
the evening we had a comfortable sitting by
ourselves ; and have found it very strengthen-
ing frequently to retire in this manner and
seek for counsel in this trying field of labour,
where we feel the need of putting on the whole
armour, so that nothing may suffer by or
through us.

" 3d. George Dillwyn, David Sands and
myself, paid another visit to the aforesaid shoe-
maker, at his request, and he appeared glad of
the visit. My companions going to our inn,

I called to see Henry Wertsig, a woman's ha-
bit-maker; and after spending some time with
him, he accompanied me to our lodgings. On
our way we met a German nobleman, who,
after passing a few steps, turned back to
speak to us ; and said he had been in poor
health for some time, had tried physicians, the
mineral waters and travelling, but all to little
purpose ; a dejection spread over his counte-
nance and he seemed in a serious frame of
mind. My friend informed him I was from
America, on a visit to the children of God in
Germany. He expressed a wish for my pre-
servation and success. I told him there was
one Physician near at hand to whom he might
yet successfully apply, who, if it were not
consistent with his wisdom to restore him to
health, could bless the affliction to him, and
prepare him for a better inheritance ; to which
he assented, and parted with us in a very
friendly manner. I can but admire at the
clear and decisive manner in which many of
these seeking people speak of their convince-
ment of the fundamental doctrines of Friends,
and the sense they have of their own weak-
ness in not more boldly and openly maintain-
ing them ; but that time must come, I solidly
believe, to many in this land.

" First-day, 4th. Though very rainy, yet
eight of the friendly people and two Moravi-
ans came and sat down with us in silence at
our inn. Some religious communication taking
place, they received it in much stillness ; and
when it appeared about time to break up, we
desired if there had been anything said which
they did not unite with or understand, they
might take the freedom to mention it ; to which
the old man (Moravian) replied, it was entire-
ly consistent with Scripture, and what he had
found in his own mind for forty-five years.
They parted with us in much tenderness and
with reluctance, desiring our preservation, and
hoped we would visit them again.

" A great fair of horses, cattle, hogs, mer-
chandize, &c., is to commence after dinner;
and this occasioned our getting away as soon
as we could, the people beginning to collect
largely about our inn. The landlord express-
ed his sorrow that we could not stay in his
house with satisfaction, as dancing, music, and
all kinds of rioting would soon begin and con-
tinue for two days; he also said that he thought
it a blessing to have such people in his house.

" 5th. Moved on to Hammeln ; the country
we passed through was more fertile than here-
tofore, the road paved, the mountains round us
covered with beech and other timber, the val-
lies clothed with verdure and very pleasant.
Having taken some cold from riding through
the rain, I was more unwell when we arrived
at Hammeln, than all the journey before. This



is a fortified town, and may contain about
fifteen thousand inhabitants; it is now full of
soldiers, and said to be the strong hold of the
Hanoverian dominions; its handsome gardens
and vallies of grass land, with a water course
through it, give it a pretty appearance.

" 6th. Feeling poorly and but little pros-
pect of religious service in Hammeln, we set
out for Pyrmont, ti'avelling through a hand-
some, hilly and well cultivated country, thickly
settled with villages — the people were gather-
ing in their harvest. Arrived at Pyrmont and
alighted at our friend Frederick Seebohm's, and
were provided with accommodations. Lewis
Seebohm and several of the friendly people
coming to see us, we had a comfortable religi-
ous opportunity with them, in which Lewis in-

" 7th. This being their week-day meeting,
about twenty men and women attended, and it
was a solid baptizing time. The people stayed
with us some time after the meeting was over,
and seemed much pleased to see us. We con-
cluded to have our dinner ready cooked from
an inn, and a young woman named Lena Span-
nagle, who had been with George Dillwyn and
Sarah Grubb, and also with John Pemberton
until he died, having heard of our coming,
walked twelve miles to offer us her services,
which we freely accepted.

" 8th. Walked out to Lewis Seebohm's,
about one and an half miles. The valley
which he occupies was given him, about four
years past, by the prince of Waldeck, to erect
a manufactory of edge tools, which he has ac-
complished and improved the place very much
for the time. He has a pretty good library,
and is a man of good talents, acquainted with
the English and French languages.

" 10th. Visited the family of Lewis Hey-
dorn, consisting of his wife and six children.
Being obliged to act as interpi'eter, I did it in
much fear, lest I should make some mistake;
sensible that we have daily need of Divine
help, that we may keep a conscience void of
offence: we hoped the opportunity was profit-

" Went to see a person named Galla, whose
family consists of himself, wife and two jour-
neymen. The language of ' peace be to this
house,' went forth freely; the spring of ever-
lasting love and life being mercifully opened,
we rejoiced together in the feeling of near unity
and affection for each other. One of the young
men was especially made near to us, as one
who, if he kept faithful, would be made an in-
strument of good to others. At the burying
ground we saw the grave of dear John Pem-
berton. When I think of this brother being
brought, in so singular a manner, to lay down
his life among this handful of professors, who

are like the first fruits in Germany, that say-
ing mostly occurs, ' the blood of the martyrs
is the seed of the church.' He is remembered
here with much sweetness.

"First-day morning, 11th. About forty*
Friends attended the meeting, which was a
solid, profitable season. A woman who hap-
pened to be at the meeting at Hanover, last
first-day, walked with her brother-in-law six
miles to the meeting, over a high mountain.
She is the wife of Huber, at Hanover, dined
with us, was very tender, and said the Friends
at Hanover sent their love to us and hoped we
would visit them again — she thought the Lord
had brought us there for their sakes. After-
noon — some notice being given of the meeting,
about sixty attended, some of whom were of
those who had separated from the little society
here; the Lord was pleased to be with us in a
remarkable manner, and most present were
broken into tears. It held three hours, and
ended in solemn prayer and praises to God;
several persons continued with us until nearly
ten o'clock, conversing on religious affairs.

" 12th. In the afternoon, visited the family
of Herman Shutamire, who had separated.
We asked him some questions concerning his
separation, which he answered in a good
frame of mind ; and after recommending him
to dwell near the fountain of love, that would
reconcile and unite all the children of our
heavenly Father together, we parted in much

_ "13th. Visited several families, which ser-
vice was attended with much openness and
satisfaction. The valley where the Factory
is, they call Friedenstall or Peace-dale; it is
a quiet sequestered fertile spot, and I believe
that great harmony prevails among the in-
habitants, who are four families, chiefly con-
nected with Friends.

" 16th. Herman Shutamire visited us, and
brought three papers, one from himself, one
from Henry Munthang, and one from Antho-
ny Shonning; being a vindication of their
conduct in separating from Friends. On read-
ing and considering the contents, we agreed
to request the principal Friends who remain-
ed united as a body, to meet us to-morrow.

" 17th. The Friends having drawn up the
causes of their disunity with those who had
separated, we found it was likely to prove a
very exercising affair to us, and were much
discouraged, feeling but little hope of a i-e-

" 18th. First-day : held a meeting at nine
o'clock, which ended solidly. In the afler-

* These people, though professing our principles,
are not accounted strictly in membership with our
religious Society.



noon meeting about fifty were present, two of
whom were Jews, and it was thought to be a
favoured time. The young women who are
in famiUes, and work either in or out doors
as occasion requires, and very hard at times,
are paid about seven dollars a year : and a
young man, a Friend of good capacity says,
if he makes his pair of shoes per day, he
earns about two shillings and sixpence our
money, a week, and is found board and wash-
ing ; yet he keeps himself decent, and is
dressed like a Friend of our country. Pro-
visions and clothing are about two-thirds of
the price in America ; but they make but
little clothing and mean diet do. Several of
them express their desire to go to America,
but we dare not encourage or unsettle them.
Our concern for the right ordering of things
among this little society, keeps our minds
closely exercised, as well as for the restora-
tion of those who are scattered — the eyes of
the people are much upon them and us, some
for evil and some for good. Having had my

Online LibraryWilliam EvansThe Friends' library : comprising journals, doctrinal treatises, and other writings of members of the religious Society of Friends (Volume 1) → online text (page 83 of 105)