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New York; in all of which places, and many more to which his labors extended, God gave him some souls as seals of his ministry. In 1793 he removed to Fairfield, N. Y., about sixty-six miles west of Albany. At this time there were but two ministers of the Baptist denomination, besides himself, west of Albany. He had much reason to exclaim, “O Lord, the harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few !" He and his two colleagues in the ministry formed the first con. ference and association west of Albany. He now felt “married to Zion," and rode from place to place, through every inclemency of weather, privation, and suffering, to spread the knowledge of the gospel among the scattered inhabitants of this then wilderness. Many, it is believed, were brought to the knowledge of the truth, through the instrumentality of his labors, in the counties of Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, and Otsego. In March, 1799, he moved to Sangerfield, where his labors were wonderfully blessed, as well as in some of the neighboring towns, as Manlius, Pompey, Homer, Scipio, Ovid, Palmyra, &c.
About this time he made a visit to his parents, in Vermont, and baptized his father, who had been for many years a mem. ber of the Presbyterian church. In 1805 he broke up house. keeping, and rode from place to place, with his consort, preaching the gospel, having no fixed place of residence. He was everywhere greeted as a father and a friend, and his council sought in all matters of difficulty in relation to church government.
In the autumn of 1817 he descended the Ohio as far as Cincinnati, where he continued and preached until the March following, when he came to Madison, Ind., and preached during the spring and summer. In September he removed to Vernon, and thence to Geneva, where he lived rather ob. scurely till the time of his death, though he occasionally preached to the comfort and edification of saints and the awakening of sinners. He was attacked with the sickness which terminated his life while on a preaching tour in the New Purchase. He, however, was able to return to the house of his son, where he died.
Eld. Butler's sermons were generally systematic, well connected, and his quotations from scripture appropriate. His language was plain and perspicuous, and sometimes eloquently metaphorical. His manner of delivery was solemn and impressive. About the year 1810 he was attacked with an apoplectic fit, and fell into the fire, by which the globe of his left eye was entirely destroyed, and his face otherwise much disfigured. Previous to that event his person was comely. During the last years of his life he had several attacks of sickness, which seemed to threaten his life ; and he often spoke of death as near at hand.
" He smiled unruffled o'er the approaching scene.”
During his last sickness he spoke of the goodness of God to him, and appeared willing “ to depart hence, that he might be with Christ.” A sermon was preached at his burial by Eld. Thomas Hill, from Rev. xiv. 13: “Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord, from henceforth; yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; and their works do follow them.”
EMORY Osgood was born in the town of Newfane, county of Windham, Vermont, July 24, 1777. Left an orphan in the second year of his age, he was subjected to many privations and hardships, and had but little opportunity for an education. In the year 1799 he married Miss Cynthia Stockwell; and from the time of their first acquaintance he resolved to become more steady and industrious. In 1800 his mind was arrested ; at once his sins seemed to be set in order before him, and he was brought to the painful conclu. sion that he had sinned away the day of grace.
He contin. ued much in this situation for days. His distracted mind now retraced the events of a wicked life, which only increased the gloomy horror-he often retired in secret to pray. Mrs. Osgood, who had for a long time been in a similar state of mind, begged the privilege, on the next occasion, of retiring with him. Accordingly, the next evening they retired into the field, and there, upon their knees, besought the Lord to have mercy upon them. God was pleased, in rich mercy, to grant deliverance to his soul. The next evening, by the request of his wife, he prayed in his family, and from that time the family altar was never left without an offering (except providentially) until the day of his death. He was baptized by Eld. Beemus, in Hinsdale, N. H., Feb., 1801. July following he united with the Baptist church in Brook. line. It was at this time that his mind became deeply im. pres sed with the duty of preaching Christ ; but the magni. tude of the work, and the vast responsibility which the subject involved, together with his limited knowledge and abilities, of which he seemed fully conscious, overwhelmed his mind, and he found his heart much inclined to rebellion. But God was pleased to make him willing by the rod of correction ; and now humbled under his mighty hand, he promised obe. dience to his command.
In 1802, being called by the church to exercise his public talents, he obeyed, and, with trembling heart, addressed the people from Isa. v. 4, to their comfort and edification. He continued preaching in the vicinity of this church and in Hinsdale until 1803, when the finger of Providence seemed to point him to the Black River country, N. Y., to which place, after making suitable arrangements, he removed with his family, and settled in Henderson, poor, indeed, in the things of this world. Here he had to labor with his hands, and preach the gospel. The country being new, and the inhabitants generally poor, he could have but little prospect of assistance from them ; consequently, he was subjected to many inconveniences, not uncommon to ministers in new settlements. There were only three families in that town on his arrival ; and he was under the necessity of going three and four miles to labor with his hands to obtain provision for his family.
His ministerial labors were spent in different places. For two or three years he traveled on foot twelve or fourteen miles. At this time he was earnestly solicited by the breth. ren on Sandy Creek to remove among them ; but his mind being impressed that there would soon be a people near him, who would need his labors, he declined their proposals. And in this he was not disappointed. Settlers now flocked in from almost every quarter, so that the ensuing season he was called to preach within two miles of his own habitation. In 1806 he saw the rise of the first Baptist church in Henderson, constituted with eighteen members, of which he and his wife were two, and where he continued a successful pastor until regularly dismissed in 1823, to go to Oneida Castleton.
In 1807 he was ordained to the work of the ministry; and for the ten ensuing years never failed to preach on Lord's day but two or three times; and during that term never disappointed an assembly, although he had to labor in the field daily to support his family, and was frequently called on to attend funerals, ten, fifteen, twenty, and in one instance forty, miles from home. In 1813 he preached twenty-seven funeral sermons in the short term of thirty days. In the fall of 1807 he beheld the rise of the Black River Baptist Asso. ciation, of which he was the clerk for a number of years.
Eld. Osgood appears to have commenced his missionary labors in 1811. From that date to his last illness a great proportion of his labors were spent on the missionary field. He acted at different times under the patronage of the Mass. B. M. Society, the Baptist Board of Foreign Missions for the U. S., and the Board of the Hamilton B. M. Society, N. Y. He devoted much time under the former Society, and the instruction of the soldiers at Sackett's Harbor. When about to close his labors among them, he received a letter from the officers of that post, expressive of their regard for him, both as a man and a minister of the
gospel. In Jan., 1812, he commenced a daily journal, which he continued until May 31, 1824, which contains many interesting particulars, and shows his life to have been one of almost unexampled activity in ministerial labors. The following extracts from his recapitulations, on entering a new year, will be sufficient to illustrate this statement :
“Jan. 1, 1818. On a review of the past year, I have much cause to mourn, and great reason to rejoice. I can say, Hitherto the Lord hath helped me.
I have had many blessed meetings, and some as peculiar trials as ever I experienced. I have tried to preach one hundred and thirty-nine times, attended sixty-four conference and prayer-meetings, and twelve church-meetings. I have baptized fifty, and married ten couple.”
“ Jan. 1, 1819. On reviewing the scenes of the past year, I find, as usual, much want of affection to God. The scenes through which I have passed have been complicated. I have had to encounter many deadly enemies; but the Lord has delivered me out of their hands. I have delivered two hundred and twelve public discourses, twenty of them funeral; attended sixty-eight conference and prayer-meetings, and nineteen church-meetings ; have baptized sixteen, and married twelve couple. Many times I have rejoiced, and at other times mourned. I can make mercy and judgment my song. The Lord keep me this year, and enable me to discharge with fidelity my ministerial duties."
“Jan. 1, 1820. I have lived to see another new-year, and in looking back I find much cause of mourning and much of rejoicing. Of mourning on account of my unlikeness to the Master I profess to serve; a want of faithfulness, of patience, and resignation, to God. Of rejoicing, on account of the faithfulness of God in supporting me under the most severe trials I ever experienced, and in not suffering my enemies to triumph over me; permitting me to discover their plots and intrigues against me. O how they have sought for my soul ! How glad they would have been to have destroyed the church and me; and if God had not been our helper, they would have triumphed. O may I be delivered from wicked and ungodly men, which are thy sword. I think God has made me instrumental of saving this part of the church. To him be all the glory, I can now say with Jacob, in calling to mind my first settlement in this town, With this staff I passed over this Jordan, and now I have become two bands.' I have delivered two hundred and twenty-three public discourses, attended sixty-eight conference, church, and prayer, meetings, and ten public meetings abroad, such as councils, missionary meetings, &c."
6 Jan. 1, 1823. Another of my years has fled, and I am permitted, unprofitable as I am, to see another new-year's day. I have very much cause of thankfulness for special mercies experienced the year past. My health has been good, and that of my family. Death has made no breach upon us. We have enjoyed peace and plenty, and have been blessed with many spiritual enjoyments. I have seen much of the salvation of God in the regeneration of sinners. I have enjoyed much comfort in ministerial association. I feel united with all my brethren in the ministry. I have as much visible evidence of usefulness in the Zion of God as in any