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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Diary of Rev. T. J. Tenney, 1842

Source: Charles Foster Whitman, A history of Norway, Maine: from the earliest settlement to the close of the year 1922 [] (Lewiston, Me.: Lewiston Journal Printshop and Bindery, 1924).
[p. 318]
Jan. 5—Rode to Weare, N. H.

Jan. 6—Visited father and William. Great changes have taken place there since I first saw the light. Four sisters and a brother (all but one) have migrated to distant lands and other homes. The mother who fondled us passed away long ago in purity and glory. My father still lives a lone life where home was but where home is no longer.

Jan. 9—Rode home. This is the first day I have spent the Sabbath in this manner for many years.

Jan. 16—This evening married Mr. Mark P. Smith of this place to Miss Susan B. Tenney. May their union prove a happy one.

Jan. 18—Visited a school.

Jan. 20—Had a donation party of 124. This is something new for us, and at least a manifestation of a kindness we little expected.

[p. 319]
Every man brought his own provisions, and when they all had eaten we had a number of goodly presents left.

Jan. 23—Preached at N. Norway.

Jan. 24—Visited a school and two of the sick.

Jan. 25—At home. Married Mr. Thomas Cousins of Poland to Miss Dorothy S. Millett of Norway.

Jan. 30—Preached in N. in the forenoon, and in the afternoon at the Cape (South Paris).

Feb. 1—Attended the funeral of Mr. Amos Upton (Jr.).

Feb. 2—Visited the schools in Uncle (Nat) Bennett's Dist., and in Col. (John) Millett's.

Feb. 10—Rode to Denmark.

Feb. 11—To Hiram and made an appointment for Sunday.

Feb. 12—At Father Gibson's.

Feb. 20——Preached in Casco, and rode back to D.

Feb. 21—Came home.

Apr. 16—My little boy taken violently ill with the canker rash.

Apr. 17—There is no improvement in the child. The rash has not come out so freely as is desirable.

Apr. 18-27—Have been days of suffering in our family. Today about noon it appears that he cannot live till another morning. He is a dear child and just old enough to walk and use some common words. It is hard to give him up, for a thousand ties bind him to us, but if he goes from us, we know where we shall find him. In his Father's house are many mansions, and when we shall have done with the cares of earth, we shall find an abiding place there and rejoice in the fulness of his salvation.

Apr. 28—Our little cherub had an uneasy night, but on the whole is no worse today. A sore has broken in his head, and discharged very freely at the left ear.

Apr. 29—12.30 o'clock. He has gone.

"Rest thee, pure one, rest,
We would not call thee back
For thou art blest."

May 1—Today for the last time, we have looked upon what remains of our little boy. O how hard it is to give him up. We have listened to a very good discourse from Br. (Rev. George) Thomes of Buckfield. We followed our child to the grave, have seen him lowered down into the earth—and have left him there, in the full belief that when a few more years are past, we shall join him in a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Br. Thomes spoke from I Thess. 4:13.

May 2—The disease of which our child died is spreading amongst us. There are three in Mr. Thayer's family, a little girl in Mr. Wrisley's and one in Br. Elliot Smith's.

May 3—At home. No new cases of scarlet fever.

May 4—Carried Izah over to Denmark to spend a few weeks at her father's.

[p. 320]
May 6—Rode home to keep house alone. O how I am reminded by everything I touch and see of our little one. But I dare not indulge in the feelings that move me, that he was not to be embraced again in the arms of his parents. But better arms enfold him in a better land and I ought to rejoice that it is so. This afternoon I set a locust tree at the foot of his grave.

June 19—We are again blessed with a token of affection. Early this morning, a little daughter was born to us. (Mrs. Frank A. Danforth.) We bless God for his goodness and hope He will enable us if the little one is to make a long stay in this world of change, to keep it in the path of duty. May it not only bless us but be a blessing to others and itself as well as to Him who numbers the hairs of our heads.

July 2—I have a thousand times thought of the many hues of the character of man. In my younger days I dreamed of friendship and love and have often read about them since, but in nine cases out of ten, I have found them names—only names. And how much of the pretended piety of the world is anything more than its assumption. How many are the tongues, oiled and honeyed to give utterance to the soapy—forgive the word—expressions of those who lie for the purpose of gaining what would be better gained by fair and honest dealing. How often are we praised for actions and labors, which our honest eyesight sees as the mere trifles of life—every-day things—things done by everybody, and known to be such by the one who does them, as well as by him who offers the praise, and is both pitied and despised by the sensible of all denominations.

Aug. 10—I have married Mr. Henry L. Crockett to Rosanna A. Buck, both of Norway. We call our little girl Adnah with the preface Susan. (Mrs. Frank A. Danforth.)

Aug. 24—Attended the funeral of Mother Thompson who died the 23d. She came down to the grave full in the faith of a world's salvation. She was 91 years and 6 mos. old, had lived through the French and Indian war, the Revolution and last war. Her father was killed by the Indians, seven months after her birth. She married Mr. Thompson in Jan. 1769, and had three children of whom none are living—the 2d child was burned to death in Nov. 1820. Her husband died Mar. 14, 1821, in his bed and she awoke to find him gone. And at last she, too, has left us to join her family.

Sept. 9—Left home for Boston, and rode to Dover, N. H., passing the camp ground in Oxford. I took the first train of cars for Boston and on the way passed a 2d camp ground in Kingston, N. H. It being rainy it seemed rather in the cooling part of a revival. What their success had been I am not able to say, but at any rate, the
chances appealed, two for a cold and fever, to one for salvation. We were permitted to see them but a moment, and might have been deceived. The steam power moved us rapidly away, and we soon found ourselves in the midst of cabs and omnibuses.

Sept. 11—Preached in East Boston on exchange with Bro. Cobb (Rev. Sylvanus).

Sept. 12—Rode to Burlington where we spent Tuesday and

[p. 321]
Wednesday as happily as we could desire. Cousin Gleason and Cobb with his wife are a trio of as good friends as one will generally find.

Sept. 15—Cousin George G. carried me to Billerica to attend a dedication. Here I met Bros. Gardner, of our State, Thayer, Miner, Chapin—a preacher of Lexington, etc., etc. From here Bro. Thayer took us to Lowell.

Sept. 17—I spent in Lowell to little advantage.

Sept. 18—Preached in L. for Bro. Thayer. The house was full in the afternoon. Poor singing on acct. of the absence of the leader.

Sept. 19—Rode to Boston and spent the night at Br. Cobb's.

Sept. 20—Rode to Providence, R. I.

Sept. 21—First day of the national convention of our denomination.

Sept. 22—The last day. In our stay here we received the best of treatment. Br. Salisbury with whom we had bread and board gave the Down Easter good entertainment.

Sept. 23—Rode to Boston and the next day came to Portland in the steamer Telegraph, and home. Our journey has been a good one. I have been well, except a little seasick.

Oct. 29—Attended the funeral of Sister Mixer (Mrs. Esther Bennett Mixer). The severity and length of her sickness were great, but she bore it all with a Christian resignation.

Oct. 30—Attended the funeral of Mr. Benjamin Witt who died the 28th, aged 76. He was one of the earliest Universalists in town.

Nov. 7—Attended the funeral of Peter Buck, who was 93 years and 3 mos. old.

Nov. 10—Married Mr. Sylvanus Porter of Paris to Miss Esther C. Millett of Norway.


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