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grace, he rejoiced in Christ as his righteousness, his strength, and his salvation. He had now his duty to learn from the word of God; and being convinced that he ought to be baptized, and make a public profession of religion, he united with the Baptist church in Dover, under the pastoral care of Eld. Waldo. In 1776 he settled himself in marriage. In 1782 he removed to Stillwater, and joined the church under the care of Eld. Lemuel Powers. It was soon discovered that he had a gift for public improvement, which was not wholly neglected. He did not immediately engage in the work of the ministry, but on the day that terminated the thirtieth year of his life he preached his first sermon. In 1789 he removed to Lanesborough, and was ordained to the work of the gospel ministry in the summer of the following year. But he soon found it necessary to return to Stillwater, where he continued three years, preaching and administering the ordinances of the gospel.
In 1794 he removed to the town of Scipio, in the county of Cayuga, at which time the whole county was almost an entire wilderness. He was the only Baptist minister west of Whitesboro ; and the field of his labors was very exten. sive. In the fall of that year there was a church established in Scipio, afterwards denominated the first church in Scipio. He soon afterwards had the satisfaction of seeing a church arise in Aurelius, a town adjoining, to which, in 1800, he removed, and continued until his death, which took place on the 10th of September, 1815.
Eld. Irish was indefatigable in labor, patient of fatigue, and easily surmounted many obstacles, which would deter one possessed of a mind less resolute. Those who are unac. quainted with the state of new and thinly inhabited countries, can not form an idea of the qualities necessary to enable a minister of Christ to plant the gospel in such an extensive region as was traversed by this valuable man.
One instance, which may serve to show what he had the fortitude and per. severance to go through, it is thought proper to relate : In 1799, being called, with some of his brethren of the church in Scipio, to assist in organizing a church in Phelpstown, the roads at that time being totally impassable on horseback, by reason of a great depth of mud and snow, he encouraged his brethren to undertake to travel on foot, a distance of thirty miles, which all but one accomplished. He traveled very extensively to preach the gospel.
There are but few places in the State of New York, west of Whitestown, and in Upper Canada, where his name is not familiar. He manifested a zeal in the missionary cause, and performed several missions under the Massachusetts Baptist Missionary Society to their acceptance. In his public performances, he was more remarkable for his solemnity and zeal, than for his depth in doctrine; yet he was not considered, by his acquaintance in general, to be greatly deficient in doctrinal knowledge. He had many bitter enemies, and many warm admirers. His enemies were often sanguine in their hopes of destroying his character, but never succeeded; and his friends might perhaps in some instances carry their fondness for him too far. The only papers found after his death, to guide the writer of these memoirs, is one containing an account of the number baptized by him ; by which it appears that he, in the course of his ministry, bap. tized one thousand two hundred and eighty persons; about eleven hundred of whom were baptized in the western coun. try, after his removal to Scipio. At his interment an appro. priate discourse was delivered by Eld. John Jeffries, from Tim. iv. 7,8: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith ; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day; and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
CAL E B DOUGLASS.
CALEB DOUGLASS was born in the city of New London, Conn., Feb. 11, 1756, being the third son of John and Esther Douglass, who were pious and respectable people. At the age of four years his parents removed about five miles into the country, where he received such an education as was common in those days. From his
youth he was at times the subject of serious impressions. Of his religious exercises, and the events of his life up to the thirty-second year of his age, the following brief sketch from his own pen furnishes he only account we have been able to obtain :
“ In my twentieth year a revival of religion commenced in the place of my residence, and some of my associates were brought to the knowledge of the truth. At this time my mind was more powerfully affected than ever before with the concerns of my immortal soul. Those impressions continued for several weeks, but at length subsided, and left me still destitute of a hope in Christ. From my childhood I had gradually flattered myself that I should have time enough on a sick-bed to repent; thinking that the near approach of death would be calculated to awaken my attention to the importance of being prepared for that solemn event. In 1776 I had an opportunity to learn the deceptive character of that dangerous and fraudulent sentiment; for during a severe sickness, in which my life was not expected from day to day, I was perfectly stupid as to the concerns of my soul, notwithstanding a brother died of the same disease.
“In 1777 I was married to Bethiah, daughter of Jonathan and Elizabeth Chapel. February, 1779, myself, my wife, and child, being confined with the small-pox, my attention was called to the welfare of my soul, and I resolved, that, if my life were spared, I would live differently. A few weeks after my recovery I apprehended that something peculiar was to take place. The world lost its power to charm, and I felt the attractions of the house of God. Although I lived six miles from the meeting which I preferred to attend, I deemed it no burden to walk that distance every Sabbath. It was a time of general stupidity even among professors of religion. I endeavored as much as possible to conceal my feelings from every human being. I supposed myself to be entirely alone in my exercises, as I knew of no person in the town who was under serious impressions. One Sabbath morning, having concluded not to attend meeting as usual, after it was too late to reverse my decision, I had many distressing reflec. tions, and feared that my having neglected one of the means of grace might decide my case for eternity.
«While under these impressions, a friend sent me information that the Rev. Daniel Miner was to preach a funeral sermon that day, four miles distant. I cheerfully joined him, and went to hear that man of God. For several weeks pre. vious time had appeared very short, eternity just at hand, a preparation for death and judgment of the greatest moment.
The sermon was attended with the influence of the Divine Spirit;
; and such was my distress during service, that it was with difficulty that I could refrain from crying aloud. I went home with an increased sense of guilt, and the follow. ing evening, for the first time, disclosed the anxiety of my mind to my wife, who, about two years after, became a hope. ful subject of Divine grace. I sought with redoubled solícitude to obtain religion ; had clearer views of my wickedness and the depravity of my heart. I remained in much the same state of mind for several weeks. During this period I 1 ad peculiar impressions to visit a brother, who lived about three miles distant; and I trust the Lord blessed the interview to his soul, as he soon after obtained a hope in Christ. Not far from this time, another, who visited me, returned with serious impressions, and shortly after was brought into the liberty of the gospel. After several months' distress I was relieved by meditating upon the pascal lamb, as typical of “the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sin of the world.' A few weeks after, I united with the Separatists, in Lyme, Conn., under the pastoral care of Eld. Daniel Miner; and, following the tradition of my fathers, without examining the subject of baptism, had my child sprinkled.
Oct., 1799, removed to Middletown, Conn., and joined a church of the same order. A number of the brethren, living in the same vicinity, and remote from the body of the church, maintained meetings in my neighborhood during the winter season, and for a considerable time I attended only as a hear
But after severe trials for several weeks, I was con. strained to take an active part in exhortation and prayer. In so doing I obtained deliverance, and went on my way rejoicing. I remained in this place more than five years, and continued to enjoy the consolations of religion most of the time. In 1785 I removed to Sandersfield, Mass., where I found myselt in a very destitute region. No religious denomination maintained public worship within seven miles. In these circumstances I felt irresistibly urged, with one other individual, to establish a meeting. In conducting divine worship, I endeavored, as far as I was able, to instruct the people, without entertaining the thought of ever attempting to preach. Through many trials and discouragements, our meetings were continued about two years. Not far from this time the health of my wife became seriously impaired, and she sunk into a fatal decline, which terminated her earthly existence on the 19th day of August, 1788."
With this mournful event his memorandum closes. In 1789 he was married to Sarah, daughter of Daniel Hall, of Meriden, Conn. He continued his public exercises, but en. dured severe trials in relation to baptism, especially when those who had experienced religion under his improvements questioned him on the subject. He removed to Whitesboro, Ñ. Y., 1791. After a full investigation, he became thoroughly convinced of the invalidity of infant sprinkling, and of the correctness of the sentiments maintained by the Baptist denomination respecting the ordinances of the gospel. Under the influence of these views, he joyfully received the sacred rite at the hand of Eld. Stephen Parsons, 1796, being one of the first persons ever baptized in Whitestown. Not far from this time a Baptist church was formed in the village of Whitesboro, of which he became a member. Although at its organization this little branch of Zion consisted of but seven individuals, he lived to see it embrace more than three hundred members. In 1799 he was chosen deacon of said church ; was subsequently called to the exercise of his ministerial gifts: and on the 7th of January, 1802, was set apart, by ordination, to the work of the gospel ministry. Eld. Stephen Parsons, Hezekiah Eastman, and John Stevens, officiated on the occasion.
In 1803 he yielded to the earnest solicitations of his breth. ren, and consented to take the pastoral charge of the church in Whitesboro, which he continued to do with fidelity and success till 1816, when he was succeeded by Eld. Galusha. This transfer of his pastoral responsibilities, which was at nis own instance, and effected by his own persevering efforts, neither abated his activity nor his usefulness. While, as a nursing father, his zeal for the welfare of the church at home was not diminished, his evangelical labors in destitute neighborhoods, and among feeble churches abroad, were more abundant. Thus he spent eight happy years, making glad the hearts of many, and rejoicing in the increasing prosperity of the dear church with whose interests the tenderest sympathies of his soul were interwoven. At times his cup of blessing seemed to overflow, while he