William Evans.

The Friends' library: comprising journals, doctrinal treatieses, & other writings of members of the religious Society of Freinds online

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worthy forever and forever.

23d of twelfth month. Second-day morn-
ing I set out with Thomas Lewis and rode to
Henderson's settlement : on the way we crossed
Saluda river, our horses swimming by the
side of the canoe in which we were ferried
over by a drunken man, and one of the horses
narrowly escaped drowning.

24lh. Was at Allwood meeting, and next
day, accompanied by Thomas Cook, I set out
for Georgia, crossed the Savannah river, and
a(\er riding about fifly miles, got to the house
of our friend William Farmer. This being
the time when the poor slaves are allowed
liberty for frolicking, the woods resounded with
their songs, and with other noises made by
them and their oppressors, who appeared to
want that consideration, which would have
induced them to set a better example. If the
day called Christmas is considered by pro-
fessing Christians as a holy day, surely it
ought not to be devoted to drunkenness and
riot, whereby the kingdom of antichrist is pro-

On the 26th, we had a comfortable meeting
near William Farmer's. On first-day, 28th,
a hard, suffering one at Wrightsborough, and
one equally so, on the 29th, at the house of

John Stubbs ; — that at Wells-creek was more
comfortable — few Friends reside there, but
many others attended.

The first day of the year 1800, being at a
Friend's house a few miles from my lodgings,
I received information, that three Friends had
arrived there who wished to see me ; and on
returning, I found my companion, Joshua
Lord, who had recovered our horses, afler
riding more than two hundred miles in search
of them. Having fallen in company with
Daniel Haviland and Jesse Copeland, they
had come on together. Our meeting was mu-
tually agreeable, as I had seen no Friend of
my former acquaintance for sonoe months;
and having long known Daniel, and he being
from New York, and having been at my
house long since I lefl home, it was truly
comfortable to discourse with him, as he
brought good accounts of my family- We
attended the Monthly Meeting of Wrightsbo-
rough, and found Friends to be in a divided
state, and the business conducted in a spirit
of strife, to the dishonour of the holy Head
of the church, who set an example of meek-
ness, and taught that we should not return
reviling for reviling, but blessing for re-
proaches. AAer attending several other meet-
ings in Georgia, we returned to Allwood,
where we met Susannah Hoi lings worth, a
minister living in South Carolina, and we all
attended meeting there next day. Here Dan-
iel Haviland lefl me, to visit some meetings
which I had been at ; and afler resting a day,
I set out for Bush river Quarterly Meeting.
Stopping at an inn upon the road, I heard of
the death of George Washington, late presi-
dent of the United States. He was a good
example to statesmen and those in office ; ap-
pearing to have the welfare of the community
in view, rather than the honour of men or the
profits of office. The day was an unpleasant
one for travelling, by reason of the abundance
of snow that fell, being more than twelve
inches deep, a circumstance very unusual in
this country. The Quarterly Meeting at Bush
river was large, and through Divine conde-
scension proved a good time. Here my com-
panion, Joshua Lord, left me, in order to re-
turn home by land with Daniel Haviland, and
Samuel Miles agreed to accompany me to
Charleston. We had two meetings near Edis-
to, and then rode into the city and put up at
Daniel Latham's, where we were kindly en-
tertained. We had a meeting with the few
Friends resident here, and those from the
north and cast who board here during the
wintor; also one with the inhabitants more
generally, both held in the house belonging to
Friends. The crying injustice and cruelty of
slavery, had frequently engaged my attention

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during the course of this journey ; but never
more than while I was in this place, where
this oppressed race are very numerous, and
are frequently sold at auction like cattle. At
006 of these sales I was much affected, in
hearing a young coloured man pleading his
cause. His aged father and mother, and his
wife and child were all mounted upon a stage,
so that they might be seen by the bidders ;
ihey being about to be sold. The young man
stepped up and stood by them, but was soon
ordered down. He said he wanted to be sold
with them — but was told that he could not, as
it was a sale to satisfy a mortgage upon the
others, in wliich he was not included. He
pleaded with very affecting and moving lan-
guage, to show how hard it was to be sepa-
rated from his family ; but it was all to no
purpose. When he saw that his prayers were
unheeded, and that the others would be sold
without him, he burst into a flood of tears,
and in the anguish of his feelings besought
them rather to kill him ; for, said he, I had
rather die than be separated from my family —
upon which he was dragged off the scaffold
and driven away. The company went on
bidding, apparently as unafiected as though
the auctioneer had been selling sheep, while
the screams and prayers of the aged parents,
and the bereaved wife with her infant in her
arms, went up to heaven in behalf of them-
selves, and especially for the poor young
man, who hod been so inhumanly torn away
from them. Besides these victims to cruel
and aotichristian avarice, there was a large
Dumber more confined in a cellar, which were
brought out and sold to different purchasers.
Thus it is, that near relatives are often vio-
lently separated, never more to see each other
in this world ! ! 1

In the early part of the second month I sold
my horse, and embarked on board a schooner,
of about seventy tons burthen, bound for New
York. We had a fine wind in our favour for
about three days, when it came directly ahead,
and commenced one of the most violent storms
any of us had ever witnessed. There were
seventeen passengers pent up in a small cabin,
one of whom was a sea captain, who said he
had been to the East Indies three times, and
crossed the Atlantic many times ollener, but
was never in so great a storm before. It con-
tinued six days and nights, and our vessel
being tight and well balanced, laid well to the
wind — though her rigging and sails had the
appearance of a wreck when the storm abated.
At times we concluded we should never see
the land again — the sea beating over us so
violently, that no one could remain on deck ;
the helm was lashed, and the companion way
door shut close to prevent our being over-

whelmed with water in the cabin. Thus we
passed several long winter nights, without any
light — the jug containing our supply of oil
being broken at the commencement of the
gale. The consternation which prevailed in
the night, when it was expected the waves
would swallow us up, was great indeed —
though at times a comfortable silence pre-
vailed. In common* with my companions in
the voyage, I gave up all hope of ever seeing
home, yet was favoured with resignation, and
had no fear of death ; and at one time, when
the terrible roaring of the elements, with the
cracking of our vessel, aroused all hands out
of their beds, I was favoured to remain per-
fectly quiet in mine, expecting every moment
to be the last, ere we were swallowed up. O
then, the most anxious desire I had was, that
my dear connexions and friends might know
how calmly and undismayed I met death, and
the comfortable evidence I felt, that in my late
dedication I had not been allured by cunning-
ly devised fables. I was renewedly confirmed
in my mind, that " verily there is a reward
for the righteous," and that the peace which
our Lord Jesus Christ gives his followers,
cannot be wrested from them by any of the
adversities of time. Although, from the great-
ness of the apparent danger, I came to the
conclusion that I should not see my home
again, attended with feelings of great tender-
ness of affection for my beloved family and
friends, yet hope revived in the midst of the
storm, and a belief that we should not be lost,
in which my mind was centered in quiet reli-
ance upon Him, who will assuredly do right.

When the wind changed and the storm
abated, the sailors had much to do to put our
vessel in a trim for sailing, her bowsprit
being sprung and the rigging and sails much

As soon as we arrived at New York, I en-
gaged a passage for Poughkeepsie, and sOon
reached home, where I found my family well,
for which, and the many preservations and
favours 1 witnessed in this arduous journey, I
was humbly thankful. Having come from a
warm climate, the coldness of the weather in
our northern country affected me much, and
I was sick for some time. After my recovery,
I accompanied our dear aged friend, Mary
Griffin, in her visit to some families of Friends
in our Monthly Meeting, and was then mostly
at home, until the time of our Yearly Meet-
ing, after which my beloved wife, with Ruth
Hallock, proceeded on a religious visit to
Rhode Island, Nantucket, &c. In the eighth
month I paid a debt of love, which I felt to
Friends on Long Island, and had some meet-
ings appointed for those not of our Society,
and likewise attended most of the meetings in

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Purchase Quarterly Meeting, and had a num-
ber of favoured meetings about home, and was
permitted to enjoy much comfort at home and
in my domestic engagements.

For some years after his return from this
long and arduous journey, it does not appear
that our dear friend kept any memorandums ;
he was, however, industriously engaged in
the service of his Lord and Master, travelling
in the exercise of his gid as a minister of the
Gospel into various parts of the country.

In the year 1802, in conjunction with his
beloved friend Enoch Dorland, he performed
a religious visit to Friends in the western part
of the state of New York and in Canada ; and
most of the settlements at that time being
newly made, they underwent many privations
and hardships. He was also engaged in se-
veral other short journies, undertaken on a
similar account, cheerfully devoting a large
portion of his time, and giving up to spend
and be spent for the promotion of that pre-
cious cause, which was dearer to him than
aQy earthly possession.

His mind, for several years, had been deep-
ly exercised with a prospect of duty, to pay a
religious visit in the love of the Gospel, to
Friends and others in Great Britain and Ire-
land ; and in the year 1810, he obtained cer-
tificates from his Monthly and Quarterly Meet-
ing, liberating him for this important embassy;
and the Yearly Meeting of ministers and el
ders having also furnished him with the re-
quisite credentials, he embarked for Liverpool
in the sixth month of that year. Whilst la-
bouring under the prospect of leaving his be-
loved home and relations, to fulfil this en-
gagement of duty, he penned the following
remarks, viz :

2nd day of second month, 1810. In re-
tirement and under a solemn impression of
mind, I am led to look at the prospect I have
submitted to my friends, which looks awful
from itfi greatness, and my littleness, with the
sacrifices to be made, if way should open for
me to go, having a dear wife and children,
for whose comfort in life I am so desirous,
that I am willing to exert my strength in la-
bouring for their subsistence, both day and
night, if necessary. To leave these, and a
circle of near friends and connexions, seems
nothing short of forsaking all, I trust, for the
Gospel's sake. I think no prospect of accu-
mulating worldly treasure, would be an in-
ducemement for me to leave them and en-
counter the perils of a voyage across the
ocean. My home is comfortable, and having
lately commenced the interesting employment
of farming, I have the consoling prospect of
800D being clear of the cumber of a multipli-

city of business, in which I have heretofore
been too much engaged ; the profits of which,
however great, would never induce me to en-
gage therein again. Oh I that the ministers
of the Gospel in our Society may keep clear
of the entanglements of the world, especially
those that are inseparable from trade and
commerce I Had I attended to the clear inti*
mations of Truth in my own mind, I never
should have engaged in them ; but the Searcher
of hearts knows, that it was not in rebellion,
that I gave up to the judgment of others in
this respect. Through adorable mercy, I have
experienced the condescension of Israels Shep*
herd to be great towards me ; and he hath at
times been pleased to impress my mind with
Gospel love, under the influence whereof, I
have endeavoured to labour in the ability re-
ceived for the good of mankind, that they
might come to walk in the light of the Lord,
to the praise of his great and worthy name.
In these services I have sometimes been at a
distance from my home, for a considerable
length of time, and found that I have served
a good Master, biff love sufiiciently compen-
sated for the privation of domestic comforts,
and the endearing ties of nature ; that now I
think I can say as I have sometimes thought,
when I apprehended the probability of a final
separation being near, that there is no part of
my life to which I can recur with so much
satisfaction, as the time I have spent in the
service of the Gospel. I am sensible that I
have sometimes made misses in my services,
and was, I trust, thankful to be made senaible
thereof. It is a great work, and we had need
to die daily, if favoured to keep even pace,
neither too fast, nor yet too slow; and the
fervent desire of my mind in the present
prospect is, that I may continue to be re-
signed to Divine disposal, and if way ahoold
open, to go in that littleness which prefers
others to ourselves; for surely I may say with
Gideon, my father's fwrnWy is poor in Ma-
nassah, and I am the least in my father's
house ; yet there is strength in Omnipotence,
and if he is pleased to separate me lo the
work, good is his will. Next to this is the
sympathy and unity of the brethren ; if fa-
voured with this, it will be a confirmation to
the first : — " by one spirit are ye baptized into
one body, and also to drink together in the
spirit," said the apostle; that with sincere
desires to do right, I have again thrown my-
self as amongst my friends, who, I believe
will do what is best.

Sixth month 2nd, 1810. I parted with my
dear wife, afler a solemn and baptizing season,
at the house of my cousin Wager Hull, in
New York ; wherein we commended each
other to the protecting care of Israel's Sfaep-

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herd. She was to return home with our chil-
dren, and immediately set out to attend Rhode
Island Yearly Meeting. I remained in New
York, with a prospect of soon crossing the
seas to visit the churches in Great Britain and
Ireland. The season of parting was truly
solemn, when we remembered our dear chil-
dren, and that our motives in the separation
were purely religious, without any view to
earthly advantages. Thou, O Lord, knowest
that it is in obedience to thy blessed will,
manifested by the precious eflfusions of thy
holy Spirit in our hearts. My trust is in
thee — I pray thee to keep my dear wife and
children, through all their trials, in bumble
dependence upon thee, that their minds may
be sweetened by resignation to thy blessed will.
Do thou be pleased to soothe their afflicted
minds with the balm of thy love, and thereby
cheer and support them during my absence.
Thou hast a right to do with us as seemeth
good unto thee— blessed be thy holy name-
keep me in thy fear, that I may acceptably
fulfil the mission, in which I am engaged, to
thy honour and praise.

dd. Sat the meeting in New York in a
humble, peaceful frame of mind, and on the
6th, attended the Monthly Meeting there to
some satisfaction.

7th. The day appointed to embark for
Liverpool, but the wind being from the north-
east, our captain concluded to wait, in order
to see the result of the present indications of
an easterly storm. I rode out of town to see
some of my friends.

The anticipated storm coming on, the vessel
did not leave the harbour for several days.
His diary proceeds :

10th. Attended the meeting at the Pearl
street house, in New York, to good satisfac-
tion, aAer which I received word that the ship
was to sail at half-past two o'clock. We had
a solemn and humbling season, at the house
of my cousin aforesaid, and accompanied by
a number of Friends, went on board the ship;
but the wind being light and too much from
the east to lay our course, I returned on shore
and went to Liberty street meeting, which was
small but solemn. My way opened in the
line of the ministry, to encourage my friends
to faithful dedication in the service of Truth,
and in reverent supplication and humble
praise, to commend myself and them to the
gracious keeping of the Shepherd of Israel
Another Friend was also drawn forth in fer
vent intercession, that preservation might at-
tend me in the embassy in which I was en-
gaged. There seemed to be a general uniting
in the petition, and thanksgivings and praises
were witnessed to flow to the Preserver of

men, for favours past and for the hope vouch*
safed that they would be continued.

11th. At the dawn of day the captain of
the ship called for me, and we went to the
wharf, in order to embark, but a thick fog
and light wind caused the pilot to decline
taking charge of the ship — we therefore re*

13th. Embarked early in the morning on
board the ship Russell, Joseph Allen, master,
and weighed anchor between seven and eight
o'clock, A. M., with a south-west wind. About
noon the pilot lefl us off the light house, wind
moderate and a heavy swell running, occa*
sioned by the late storm. I was soon sea-sick.

22nd. Was a very boisterous day. In the
night the wind lulled and leil a high sea run-
ning, so that the ship tossed and rolled tre-
mendously. I have suffered much hitherto
with sea-sickness, but feel comfortable in mind
and resigned to my situation.

24th. The wind from the north with rain ;
a cold and suflering time for the poor sailors,
and how much more so must it be in the win-
ter season. I have oflen thought during the
voyage, of John Woolman's Observations on
a sea-faring life. Commerce is pursued with
too much avidity, by the members of our So-
ciety, as well as others, merely to gratify im-
aginary wants ; — the real wants of man are
few, and happy are they who know iheir de«
sires circumscribed in the fear of God.

25th. Wind came out from the north- west,
and we had a fine run ; by our computation
we passed the banks of Newfoundland this
evening, which is one-third of our distance,
in twelve days; the frequent changes we have
been obliged to make in our course, have occa-
sioned much additional toil to the poor sea-

Seventh month, 5th. In the evening, by a
lunar observation, we found ourselves about
one hundred and ninety miles from Cape
Clear, in Ireland.

8th. Sounded at eight o'clock, A. M., and
found bottom at sixty fathoms. Altered our
course from S. E. by south, to N. £. by east.
By an observation at noon, we found ourselves
considerably to the east and north of Cape
Clear, by which we knew that we had passed
it in the night. About four o'clock, P. M.,
saw the land of Ireland, bearing north by

9th. A light breeze from the south, with
which we ran rapidly up George's Channel,
and by four o'clock, P. M., the wind had in-
creased to a gale, and the weather become so
dark and thick, we could not tell where we
were by any observation of the land. Hap-
pily, we met a vessel just as we got up to
Holyhead, by which we learned that we must

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steer east to make it, which we accordingly
did, and in a few minutes saw the point, and
keeping close in shore, we came abreast of
the Skerries light*house about seven o'clock.
It is scarcely possible for a person who has
not been confined to the sight of water only
during a sea voyage, to conceive how pleasing
the view of land is. The rain and haze were
80 thick, that objects on shore were scarcely
discernible, and the wind blowing tremend-
ously, our situation awakened some serious
reflections. For, although we were within a
lew hours sail of our destined port, yet the
state of the weather, and the approach of
night, made us apprehensive of danger, both
from the coast and the numerous vessels in
the channel. We were obliged to lie on and
ofT during the night, as no pilot had hailed us,
and we could not proceed without one. Our
captain intends to keep the light-houses of
Holyhead and the Skerries in view ; and as
the nights are short, and our ship made very
snug, with closely reefed top-sails and jib only,
we hope to ride safely. How changeable are
all human things I Yesterday the weather was
remarkably pleasant ; now how altered ! We
have, however, no alternative, but to await
the issue of the night, not knowing what the
morrow may produce. I feel comfortable in
mind, resigned to the will of Israel's Shep-
herd — believing I cannot cast my care any
where, but upon him, and find the same com-
fort and serenity as I now enjoy.

10th. A fine morning — the wind fell about
midnight and veered round to the westward,
and about seven o'clock we took a pilot on
board, and at ten o'clock hove to, to wait for
the tide, in company with a number of other
ships, among whom was the Hannibal, which
left New York three days after we did. We
lay in sight of the mountains of North Wales,
which somewhat resemble the Catskill moun-
tains, in New York State. Whilst sitting
alone in the cabin, I felt my mind reverently
bowed before Jehovah, the Shepherd of Israel ;
the sweet influences of whose love, enabled
me renewcdly to dedicate my all to his blessed
service, with desires, that I may be wholly
devoted to his will in this religious embassy,
without murmuring at any thing I may suffer,
either in body or mind, for the precious cause
sake. My heart was filled with praises to
Him whose mercies endure forever — may all
the house of Israel bless his great name. In
the afternoon, about four o'clock, we came
abreast of Liverpool, but did not land until
about eight o'clock in the evening. Owing to
an omission in our bill of health not being
signed by the British consul at New York, we
expected to be obliged to ride quarantine, but
were agreeably released from our apprehen*

sions, and William 8prwgHf , a Friend who
was acquainted with the'^captain, coming on
board in a boat, he took me home with him.
My arrival was unexpected, Friends not hav-
ing heard of my prospect of visiting the na-
tion, until I landed ; but I met a welcome re-
ception, and was comforted in being once more
in the company of Friends.

After attending a meeting on fifth-day, the
12th, I rode out of town, to the house of
Christopher Thompson, where I rested, being

14th. Benjamin White, from Pennsylvania,
having come to Liverpool, to take passage for
home, and Susannah Home being about to
proceed to America on a religious visit to the
churches there, and being also in town, I went
with them on board the ship in which they
had engaged their passages, and we all attend-
ed the fore and afternoon meetings on first-
day in Liverpool to pretty good satisfaction.
On third-day, the 17th, I rode to Warring-
ton, and was at meeting there ; and also bad
one at six o'clock in the evening for the towns
people, in which the flowing of Gospel love
was experienced, and I was enlarged in com-
munication to the people. Next day, in com-
pany with John Bludwick and wife, I went to
Chester, where there are but few Friends.
We had a public meeting, which was satis-
factory, and I attended their Monthly Meeting
next day. Although but few members con-
stitute it, I was glad in being with tbem,
and believe the renewed visitation of ancient
Goodness were witnessed to the comfort of
many minds. After a solid season of reli-
gious retirement, at the house of a widow and
her daughter, where several other Friends
were present, I rode to Liverpool, where I
met with my dear friends aforesaid, waiting
the sailing of the ship, and Martha Routb
who had come to see them. I was glad of
the company of this devoted servant of the
Lord, whom I had often seen in my native
land, when she was there in Truth's service.

On first-day, the 22nd, was at the (brenooo
meeting at Liverpool, and dear Susannah

Online LibraryWilliam EvansThe Friends' library: comprising journals, doctrinal treatieses, & other writings of members of the religious Society of Freinds → online text (page 59 of 104)