Here to return to
THE year in which Sewall died marked the appointment of Jonathan Belcher as governor of Massachusetts. He was the sixth governor to be sent out by the crown and the third who was a native of the province. But he succeeded in his office no better than the gentlemen who had preceded him, the wrangling which had become a regular feature of legislative life here marring his administration as it had done those of his predecessors. Belcher was the son of a prosperous Boston merchant and a graduate of Harvard College. He was polished and sociable and had had the benefit of extensive travel. But he found himself in an impossible situation and the only thing for him to do was to make as few enemies as possible and wait for death or the king to remove him. People who for two generations had been practically independent were not going to take kindly to any appointee of a throne they were determined to find tyrannical.
Of course the opposition was by no means unanimous. Quite a few persons there were in Boston and its nearby towns to whom the old regime, with its subserviency to men like the Mathers, had been noxious in the extreme, and they naturally welcomed the change. But to most of those who in lineage, sentiment, and habit, represented the first planters the foisting upon New England of a royal governor, bound in loyalty to a far-off king, was an affront to be neither forgiven nor condoned. Though the holder of this office had been a man of superhuman breadth and of extraordinary generosity he would not have been acceptable to this portion of the inhabitants. William Phips had been indigenous to a degree found in no man elected by the people. But he suited neither the Mathers, who nominated him, nor the common people who hated the Mathers. Even the Earl of Bellomont, the "real lord" who succeeded Phips, got on better with the captious people who moulded public opinion in Boston than did this Maine carpenter.
For a time, indeed, it looked as if Bellomont were going to get on very well indeed. A vigorous man of sixty-three, fine looking, with elegant manners and courtly ways, he had little difficulty, at first, in making friends with even the least friendly of the Bostonians. Churchman though he was, he was not averse to attendance at the Thursday lecture and this, of course, made upon the stiff-necked Puritans just the impression he had calculated that it would.
The Assembly hired of Peter Sergeant for him the Province House afterwards renowned as the official home of the governors, and here he entertained handsomely. By a curious coincidence his lady thus succeeded as mistress of the handsome mansion Lady Phips, whom Peter Sergeant had married for his third wife. The builder, owner and first occupant of what is perhaps the most interesting house in colonial history was a rich London merchant who carne to reside here in 1667 and died here February 8, 1714. Sergeant had held many offices under the old charter government, was one of the witchcraft judges and, when Andros had been deposed, played an important part in that proceeding. That he was a very rich man one must conclude from the extreme elegance of the homestead which he erected, nearly opposite the Old South Church, on a lot three hundred feet deep with a frontage of nearly a hundred feet on what was then called High street but which we now know as Washington street.
The house was square and of
brick. It had three stories, — with a gambrel roof and lofty
last-named adornment surmounted with the gilt-bronzed figure of an
a drawn bow and arrow. Over the portico of the main entrance was an
iron balustrade bearing the initials of the owner and the date
"16 P. S.
79." Large trees graced the court-yard, which was surrounded by an
fence set off by ornamented posts. A paved driveway led up to the
of the palatial doorway. Two small out-buildings, which, in
the official days
served as porters' lodges, signified to passers-by that this
house was indeed
the dwelling-place of one who represented the majesty of England.
The Province House
Hawthorne in his "Legends of the Province House" has repeopled for us this impressive old mansion and, at the risk of anticipating somewhat the arrival of governors not yet on the scene, I shall quote his description while suppressing, as far as possible, his allusions to the deplorable condition of the house at the time he himself visited it: " A wide door with double leaves led into the hall or entry on the right of which was a spacious room, the apartment, I presume, in which the ancient governors held their levees with vice-regal pomp, surrounded by the military men, the Counsellors, the judges, and other officers of the Crown, while all the loyalty of the Province thronged to do them honour.... The most venerable ornamental object is a chimneypiece, set round with Dutch tiles of blue-figured china, representing scenes from Scripture; and, for aught I know, the lady of Pownall or Bernard may have sat beside this fireplace and told her children the story of each blue tile. . .
"The great staircase, however, may be termed without much hyperbole, a feature of grandeur and magnificence. It winds through the midst of the house by flights of broad steps, each flight terminating in a square landing-place, whence the ascent is continued towards the cupola. A carved balustrade... borders the staircase with its quaintly twisting and intertwining pillars, from top to bottom. Up these stairs the military boots, or perchance the gouty shoes of many a Governor have trodden, as the wearers mounted to the cupola, which afforded them so vide a view over the metropolis and the surrounding country. The cupola is an octagon with several windows, and a door opening upon the roof.... Descending... I paused in the garret to observe the ponderous white oak framework, so much more massive than the frames of modern houses, and thereby resembling an antique skeleton."
The cheerful task of recalling the courtly functions of the Province House in its bright days has been ably discharged by Edwin L. Bynner — who, writing in the Memorial History of Boston on the "Topography of the Provincial Period" invokes "this old-time scene of stately ceremonial, official pomp or social gayety, of many a dinner rout or ball. Here dames magnificent in damask or brocade, towering head-dress and hoop petticoat — here cavaliers in rival finery of velvet or satin, with gorgeous waistcoats of solid gold brocade, with wigs of every shape, — the tie, the full-bottomed, the ramillies, the albermarle, — with glittering swords dangling about their silken hose — where, in fine, the wise, the — witty, gay and learned, the leaders in authority, in thought and in fashion, the flower of old Provincial life, trooped in full tide through the wainscoted and tapestried rooms, and up the grand old winding staircase with its carved balustrade and its square landing-places, to do honour to the hospitality of the martial Shute, the courtly Burnet, the gallant Pownall, or the haughty Bernard."
At the time of Bellomont's administration, however, the house had not Yet become identified with any great amount of official grandeur. The Boston of that year (1619) impressed one traveller, indeed, as a very poor sort of place. This traveller's name was Edward Ward and he is worth some attention as a wit, even though we may need to discount a good deal of what he wrote about the chief town of New England: "The Houses in some parts Joyn as in London," he says, "the Buildings, like their women, being neat and handsome; their Streets, like the Hearts of the Male Inhabitants are paved with Pebble. In the Chief or High street there are stately Edifices, some of which have cost the owners two or three thousand pounds the raising; which, I think, plainly proves two old adages true, — viz that a Fool and his Money is soon parted, and Set a Beggar on Horseback he'll Ride to the Devil, — for the Fathers of these men were Tinkers and Peddlers. To the Glory of Religion and the Credit of the Town there are four Churches.... Every Stranger is invariably forc'd to take this Notice. Wit in Boston there are more religious zealouts than honest men.... The inhabitants seem very religious showing many outward and visible signs of an inward and Spiritual Grace but though they wear in their Faces the Innocence of Doves, you will find them in their Dealings as subtile as Serpents. Interest is Faith, Money their God, and Large Possessions the only Heaven they covet. Election, Commencement and Training days are their only Holy-Days. They keep no saints' days nor will they allow the Apostles to be saints; yet they assume that sacred dignity to themselves, and say, in the title-page of their Psalm-book, 'Printed for the edification of the Saints in Old and New England.' "
A witty fellow certainly, this taverner and poet whom Pope honoured with a low seat in the Dunciad and who so cleverly hit off the peculiarities of our Puritan forbears that we have to quote him whether we will or no. In connection with the law against kissing in public he tells a story — which has since become classic of a ship captain who, returning from a long voyage, happened to meet his wife in the street and, of course, kissed her. For this he was fined ten shillings. "What a happiness," comments Ward, "do we enjoy in old England, that can not only kiss our own wives but other men's too without the danger of such a penalty." Ward regarded our women as highly kissable, observing that they had better complexions than the ladies of London. "But the men, — they are generally meagre and have got the hypocritical knack, like our English Jews, of screwing their faces into such puritanical postures that you would think they were always praying to themselves, or running melancholy mad about some mystery in the Revelations."
One of the chief objects that the king had in mind in appointing Lord Bellomont governor was the suppression of piracy, which had long been an appalling scourge on the whole American coast. The new incumbent did not disappoint his royal master, for he promptly arrested and caused to be sent to England for subsequent hanging the notorious Captain Kidd, who, from pirate hunting with Bellomont as silent partner, himself turned pirate and had to be given short shrift. While Kidd was in jail he proposed to Bellomont that he should be taken as a prisoner to Hispaniola in order that he might bring back to Massachusetts the ship of the Great Mogul, which he had unlawfully captured, and in the huge treasure of which Bellomont and his companions would own four-fifths if the prize were adjudged a lawful one. Bellomont refused this offer, for he well knew that the Great Mogul Is ship ought not to have been attacked inasmuch as that personage was on friendly terms with England. It is to this "great refusal" of Bellomont that we owe the mystery that to this day enshrouds the whereabouts of Captain Kidd's treasure.
Bellomont died in New York-whither he had gone for a short visit — March 5, 1701, after a sojourn in Boston of a little over a year. The stern-faced Stoughton again filled the gap as the head of the government. And then, on July 11, 1702, there arrived in Boston harbour as governor that Joseph Dudley who, eleven years before, had been sent out of the country a prisoner in the "crew" of the hated Andros. Dudley has been more abused than any of the royal governors. Most historians speak of him as "the degenerate son of his father" but, as far as I can see, they mean by this only that he honoured the king instead of the theocracy and attended King's Chapel instead of the Old South Church. He had been born in Roxbury July 23, 1647, after his father had attained the age of seventy, and was duly educated for the ministry. But, preferring civil affairs to the church, he held various offices and was sent to England in 1682, one of those charged with the task of saving the old charter. He soon saw that this could not be done and so advised the surrender of that document, — counsel which, of course, caused him to be called a traitor to his trust. But it served to recommend him to the royal eye and brought him the appointment of President of New England. How he was imprisoned, how he attempted escape and how he was finally punished (?) in England we have already seen. Dudley was in truth much too able a man to be ignored. During the almost ten years of his exile from America, he not only served as deputy governor of the Isle of Wight but he was also a member of Parliament. Most interesting of all he enjoyed the close friendship of Sir Richard Steele, who acknowledged that he "owed many fine thoughts and the manner of expressing them to his happy acquaintance with Colonel Dudley; and that he had one quality which he never knew any man possessed of but him, which was that he could talk him down into tears when he had a mind to it, by the command he had of fine thoughts and words adapted to move the affections." Even those who admired Dudley did — not invariably trust him, however. Sewall, whose son had married the governor's daughter, records that "the Governor often says that if anybody would deal plainly with him he would hiss them. But I (who did so) received many a bite and many a hard word from him." Dudley, first among the royal governors, began that fight for a regular salary which lasted almost as long as did the office. For some time he refused the money grants which were voted to him but, when he found that he would get nothing else, he at last gave way. Yet he was so unpopular that there was hardly any year when he received more than six hundred pounds. When Queen Anne died he knew that his power must come to an end. So he retired from public office to his estate at West Roxbury, where he died in 1720, having bequeathed fifty pounds to the Roxbury Free school for the support of a Latin master. All his life he had been a conspicuous friend of letters and, in distributing commissions, he uniformly gave the preference to graduates of the college for which he had clone so much.
To the year of Dudley's death belongs the institution of what is perhaps Boston's most unique educational enterprise, — "a Spinning School for the instructions of the children of this Town." There had arrived in Boston, shortly before this, quite a number of Scotch-Irish persons from in and about Londonderry, bringing with them skill in spinning and a habit of consuming the then-little-known potato. The introduction of the potato had no immediate social effect but the coming of the linen wheel, a domestic implement which might be manipulated by a movement of the foot, was looked upon as a matter of great importance. Accordingly, a large building was erected on Long-Acre street (that part of Tremont street between Winter and School) for the express purpose of encouraging apprentices to the manufacture of linen. Spinning-wheels soon became the fad of the day and, at the commencement of the school "females of the town, rich and poor appeared on the Common with their wheels and vied with each other in flue dexterity of using them. A larger concourse of people was perhaps never drawn together on any occasion before." By a curious kind of irony the General Court appropriated to the use of this spinning school the. tax on carriages and other articles of luxury.
The Common, by the bye, had now come to be the cherished possession which Bostonians of to-day still esteem it. Purchased by Gov. Winthrop and others of William Blackstone in 1634 for thirty pounds, a law was enacted as early as 1640 for its protection and preservation. Originally it extended as far as the present Tremont Building, and an alms-house and the Granary as well as the Granary Burying Ground (established in 1660) were within its confines. It is certainly greatly to be regretted that the famous Paddock Elms, set out on the Common's edge in 1762 by Major Adino Paddock, the first coach maker of the town, whose home was opposite the Burying-Ground, had to be removed in 1873, in order to make way for traction improvements!
The next governor after Dudley was Colonel Samuel Shute, in whose behalf friends of the Province, then in London, purchased the office from the king's appointee for one thousand pounds. Shute was a brother of the afterwards Lord Barrington and belonged to a dissenting family. It was, of course, expected by Ashhurst, Belcher and Dummer — when they obtained from Colonel Elisha Burgess the right to the governorship — that Shute would give them their money's worth and help them to down the rising Episcopal party in Boston. But their incumbent promptly showed that he was a king's man by voting an adjournment of the court over December 25, 1722. "The Governor mentioned how ill it would appear to have votes passed on that day," records Sewall; and on further argument Colonel Shute "said he was of the Church of England."
This must have been a bitter fact for our old friend, the justice, to write down in his Diary, for none had struggled harder than he against the inevitable advance of Episcopacy. Of course the religion of England must surely, if slowly, make its way forward in an English province. governed by officials sent out from England. Sewall was too sensible a man not to know this. But he would not raise his left little finger to help the matter on. His Diary abounds, as we have already seen, in references to the difficulties encountered by those who were trying to introduce into Boston the ways and the worship of the old country. When Lady Andros died he had none of his usual exclamations of pity for the sorrow of the bereaved husband, and when Andros tried to buy land for a church-home Sewall refused to sell him any.
But the governor got land just the same, for he appropriated a corner of the burial ground for his church. The Reverend Increase Mather, speaking of the matter in 1688 said: "Thus they built an house at their own charge; but can the Townsmen of Boston tell at whose charge the land was purchased?" This refers, however, only to the land occupied by the original church. The selectmen of Boston docilely granted, in 1747, the additional parcels needed for the enlargement of the building then on the spot.
unpretentious, certainly, was the
exterior of the early home of prayer-book service in Boston.
It was of wood
crowned by a steeple, at the top of which soared a huge "cockerel."
In the one cut which has come down to us of the building, the height of
scriptural bird rivals that of the nearby Beacon. This,
however, is very
likely attributable to an error in perspective on the part of the
"artist." Greenwood tells us that "a large and quite observable
crown" might be discerned just under this ambitious bird. The interior
the church was much more attractive to the eye than was the
case in the other
Boston meeting-houses. Though there were no pews for several years,
had been remedied, by 1694, as the result of a purse of fifty-six
collected from the officers of Sir Francis Wheeler's fleet, which had
the harbour shortly before. Further to offset its humble exterior the
had a "cushion and Cloth for the Pulpit, two Cushions for the Reading
Desks, a carpet for the Allter all of Crimson Damask, with silk fringe,
Large Bible, two Large Common Prayer Books, twelve Lesser Common Prayer
Linnin for the Allter. Also two surplises." All these were the gift of
Queen Mary. There was besides a costly Communion service
presented by king and
queen. Against the walls were "the Decalougue viz., the ten
the Lord's Prayer and the Creed drawne in England."
G. Dyer, the early warden of the chapel gave also according to his means and wrote down for posterity the manner of his generosity: "To my labour for making the Wather cock and Spindel, to Duing the Commandements and allter rome and the Pulpet, to Duing the Church and Winders, mor to Duing the Gallary and the King's Armes, fortey pounds, which I freely give." In 1710 the chapel was rebuilt to twice its original size, to accommodate the rapidly growing congregation. As now arranged the pulpit was on the north side, directly opposite a pew occupied by the royal governors and another given over to officers of the British army and navy. In the western gallery was the first organ ever used in America. The fashion in which the chapel acquired this "instrument" (now in the possession of St. John's parish, Portsmouth, New Hampshire) is most interesting. It was originally the property of Mr. Thomas Brattle, one of the founders of the old Brattle street church and a most enthusiastic musician. He imported the organ from London in 1713 and, at his death, left it by will to the church with which his name is associated, "if they shall accept thereof and within a year after my disease procure a sober person that can play skillfully thereon with a loud noise." In the event of these conditions not being complied with it was provided that the organ should go to King's Chapel. The Brattle street people failed to qualify and the Episcopalians got the organ. It was used in Boston until 1756 and then sold to St. Paul's church in Newburyport, where it was in constant use for eighty years, after which it was acquired for the State street Chapel of the Portsmouth church, where it still gives forth sweet sounds every Lord's day.
High up on the pulpit of King's Chapel stood a quaint hour-glass richly mounted in brass and suspended from the pillars, then as now, were the escutcheons of Sir Edmund Andros, Francis Nicholson, Captain Hamilton, and the governors Dudley, Shute, Burnet, Belcher and Shirley. It was arranged that the royal governor and his deputy were always to be of the vestry. Joseph Dudley accordingly hung up his armorial bearings and took his place under the canopy and drapery of the state pew as soon as ever he came back to the land in which his father had been a distinguished Puritan. There is nothing to show that. he did not do this conscientiously, however. Certainly it must have been much pleasanter here for a governor than in the bare meeting-houses where everything he might or might not do would be counted to his discredit.
During Colonel Shute's term of office the smallpox, which Boston had escaped for nearly twenty years, again visited the town (1721). Nearly six thousand people contracted the disease, of whom almost one thousand died. Inoculation was urged and Cotton Mather did really noble service in pushing its propaganda, soon converting to his belief in the efficacy of the practice Dr. Zabdiel Boylston, an eminent physician, and Benjamin Colman, first minister of the Brattle street Church and for nearly half a century (1701-1747) one of the famous preachers of the Province. Dr. William Douglas was the chief opponent of the new theory and he printed in the paper of the Franklins, his attacks upon those who urged it. Two years after the scourge Shute went to England on a visit from which he never returned, and Lieutenant Governor William Dummer took the chair, which, as the event proved, he was to occupy for nearly six years.
During this interim both
Increase and Cotton Mather died, the one in 1723, the other five years
The father had preached sixty-six years and had presided over
for twenty; the son was in the pulpit forty-seven years and was one of
of the college. To bear him to his burying-place on Copp's Hill six of
first ministers of Boston gave their services, and the body
was followed by
all the principal officials, ministers, scholars and men of affairs,
streets were thronged and the windows were filled "with sorrowful
spectators." How expensive this funeral was I do not know, but
Thomas Salter died (in 1714) the bill was as follows:
£ s. d.
50 yds of Plush.…..................................10 8 4
24 yds. silk crepe..................................... 2 16 0
9 3-8 black cloth..................................... 11 5 0
10 yards fustian........................................ 1 6 8
Wadding.................................................. 0 6 9
Stay tape and buckram .............................7 7 6
13 yds. shalloon....................................... 2 12 0
To making ye cloths................................. 4 17 0
Fans and girdles....................................... 0 10 0
Gloves................................................... 10 9 6
Hatte, shoes, stockings............................. 3 15 0
50 1.2 yds. lutestring .............................. 25 5 0
Several rings.…........................................ 3 10 0
Also buttons, silk, cloggs...
2 yards of cypress.…............................... 3 10 0
To 33 gallons of wine @ 4s. 6d ............... 7 8 6
To 12 ozs. spice @ 18d.…...................... 0 18 0
To 1-4 cwt. sugar @ 7s.…....................... 0 18 0
To opening ye Tomb …..
To ringing ye Bells................................... 3 10 0
To ye Pauls.....
Doctor's and nurse's bills......................... 10 0 0
— the whole amounting to over £100.
Enter now as governor William Burnet, son of the historian bishop. He arrived in Boston July 13, 1728, and was escorted from the Neck to the Bunch of Grapes Tavern by a large body of enthusiastic citizens, among them the famous Mather Byles, who dropped into poetry on this as on many a later occasion of state. Burnet had in his train a tutor, a black laundress, a steward and a French cook. Upon the latter, as will be easily understood, the Bostonians gazed with particular awe. But Burnet was merely preparing to live here as he had lived in England and, later, in New York. He was a true English gentleman, cultivated, courteous, affable and inclined to be all things to all men. Had he come in any other capacity than that of royal governor he would have found life in Boston exceedingly agreeable. But one of his instructions was to push the matter of salary, and as soon as this matter was broached the people forgot that he was personally a delightful man. As if to avert any plea of poverty which the House might advance, he referred in his first address, asking for a salary of £1,000, to the lavish fashion in which he had been welcomed. But this quite failed to make those whom he would have conciliated agree to what he demanded. They had planted themselves once and for all where the war of the Revolution found them-on the position that all "impositions, taxes and disbursements of money were to be made by their own freewill, and not by dictation of king, council or parliament." We must, as George E. Ellis lucidly points out in his study of the royal governors, honour their pluck and principle, while at the same time doing justice to the "firm loyalty, the self-respect, the dignity and persistency, with which Bur-net stood to his instructions, nobly rejecting as an attempt at bribery, all the evasive ingenuity of the recusant House in offering him three times the sum as a present, while he was straitened by actual pecuniary need."
The dissension which followed after this question had been broached was harsh in the extreme and, in the midst of it, the governor, while driving from Cambridge to Boston in his carriage, was overturned on the causeway, cast into the water and so chilled as to be thrown into a fever from which he died on September 7, 1729. The Bostonians seem to have realized that chagrin and excitement probably played as much part in hastening his end as the ducking which was the immediate cause of it, and they buried him with great pomp at an expense of eleven hundred pounds.
The funeral was conducted after the English fashion and not in the slightly mitigated Puritan manner of Cotton Mather's interment. (Before Mather's day there had been wont to be no service whatever, the company coming together at the tolling of a bell, carrying the body solemnly to the grave and standing by until it was covered with earth and that, not in consecrated ground, but in some such enclosure by the roadside as one sees frequently to-day in sparsely settled country villages.)
Gloves and rings were given to the mourning members of the General Court, and the ministers of King's Chapel, to three physicians, the bearers, the president of Harvard College and the women who laid out the body; while gloves only were given to the under-bearers, the justices, the captains of the castle and of the man-of-war in the harbour, to officers of the customs, professors and fellows of the college, and the ministers of Boston who happened to attend the funeral. Wine in abundance was furnished to the Boston regiment. Apropos of Governor Burnet's funeral Mr. Arthur Gilman states in his readable "Story of Boston" that the distribution of rings was common on such occasions, and until 1721. gloves and scarfs were also given away. But in 1741 wine and rum were forbidden to be distributed as scarfs had been forbidden twenty years earlier. (There had, however, been some advance since the time of Charles II, when on the occasion of the burying of a lord, as the oration was being delivered "a large pot of wine stood upon the coffin, out of which everyone drank to the health of the deceased.")
Five years after Burnet's death the General Court voted his orphan children three thousand pounds.
And now we come to the appointment of Belcher, with whom this chapter opened. He was in London, on the Province's behalf, at the time when the news of Burnet's death arrived and, by the exercise of not a little diplomacy, he managed to get himself commissioned governor (January 8, 1730), and so was able to land in Boston from a warship in the autumn of that same year. He also was received with signs of rejoicing, accompanied by the inevitable sermon. To his credit, it should be said, that he alone, of the governors chosen by the king, seems to have stood faithful to his paternal religion. He gave the land for the Hollis Street Church, of which Rev. Mather Byles, Sr., was minister, and, for many years, lived conveniently near to this parish of which he was a patron. The house still standing in Cambridge, with which Belcher's name is associated, was an inheritance from his father and had passed out of his hands ten years before he became governor.
Apart from the salary matter, concerning which he of course strove with no more and no less success than his predecessors, Belcher's administration of eleven years was a very peaceable one. I have elsewhere1 given an account of the very interesting journey that he and his Council made to Deerfield for the purpose of settling a grievance of the Indians in that section. The governor lost his wife during his term of office and the News-Letter of October 14, 1736, obligingly describes in detail the ensuing funeral:
"The Rev. Dr. Sewall made a very suitable prayer. The coffin was covered with black velvet and richly adorned. The pall was supported by the Honourable Spencer Phipps Esq., our Lieutenant-Governor; William Dummer Esq., formerly Lieutenant Governor and Commander-in-Chief of this province; Benjamin Lynde, Esq., Thomas Hutchinson, Esq., Edmund Quincy, Esq., and Adam Winthrop Esq. His Excellency, with his children and family followed the corpse all in deep mourning; next went the several relatives, according to their respective degrees, who were followed by a great many of the principal gentlewomen in town; after whom went the gentlemen of His Majesty's Council; the reverend ministers of this and the neighbouring towns the reverend President and Fellows of Harvard College; a great number of officers both of the civil and military order, with a number of other gentlemen.
"His Excellency's coach, drawn by four horses, was covered with black cloth and adorned with escutcheons of the coats of arms both of his Excellency and of his deceased lady [She had been the daughter of Lieutenant Governor William Partridge of New Hampshire]. All the bells in town were tolled; and during the time of the procession the half minute guns begun, first at His Majesty's Castle William, which were followed by those on board His Majesty's ship 'Squirrel' and many other ships in the harbour their colors being all day raised to the heighth as usual on such occasions. The streets through which the funeral passed, the tops of the houses and windows on both sides, were crowded with innumerable spectators."
Belcher was removed from his
post in Boston May 6, 1741, and, after an interval of four
years, was made
governor of New Jersey, where he was welcomed with open arms and did
help Jonathan Edwards — in whose "Great Awakening" he had
interested-put Princeton University on its feet. But he always retained
affection for his native place and he enjoined that his
remains be brought to
Cambridge and buried in the cemetery adjoining Christ Church,
in the same
grave with his cousin Judge
who had been his ardent friend. He died August 31, 1757. He was
Boston by William Shirley, a man whose stay here was bound up with such
interesting romance that I have chosen to discuss his career along with
events traced in the next chapter. It must, however, be plain by now
Boston has advanced a long way from the prim town over which
the Mathers held
sway. Already it has become the scene and centre of a miniature court,
state, the forms and the ceremonies appertaining thereto. Gold lace,
cuffs, scarlet uniform and powdered wigs are by this time to he
everywhere on the street, and even when the governor went to the
lecture he was richly attired and escorted by halberds. The bulk of the
to be sure are still thrifty mechanics, industrious and
there are many persons of wealth, intelligence and culture, and these
King's Chapel on Sunday. For the Brocade Age has dawned.