Second Period, 1726-1746
Extracted From
Early Annals Of Newington
Comprising The First Records Of
The Newington Ecclesiastical Society
And of the Congregational Church Conneced Therewith;
With Documents & Papers Relating to
The Early History of the Parish

Transcribed & Edited by Roger Welles
Clerk of the Society & Church
1874


[Transcribed by Dave Swerdfeger]




SECOND PERIOD, 1726-1746.

The parish of Newington being left without a pastor, by the removal of Mr. Williams, immediately took the necessary steps to supply the vacancy. Mr. Simon Backus, of Norwich, was called to preach on probation. His pastoral ministrations appear to have been satisfactory, for, after a short probationary term of service, he was called to be a settled pastor. This was voted in society meeting, Aug. 24, 1726. The terms of his settlement were agreed upon, and embodied in a vote of the society passed September 5, 1726. On account of the poverty of the parish he received but a meagre sum for a settlement, "One hundred and seventy-five pounds of the money given by the country and college, and all the money granted us in our country taxes, be it more or less." Mr. Backus, however, accepted these terms in his formal answer to the society, dated Sept. 7, 1726. He was ordained Wednesday, the 25th day of January, 1727. Dr. Brace says of him: "From all the testimony which I have found, I am convinced that Mr. Backus was a substantial, orthodox, pious minister, that gave good satisfaction to the people during his ministry, which continued about twenty years. His wife was one of the ten daughters (every one of whom has been said to be six feet tall, making the sixty feet daughters, and all of them strong in mind,) children of Rev. Timothy Edwards, of East Windsor. Mr. Belden used to tell me of Madame Backus, as living here in his time, and of her brother, Rev. Jonathan Edwards, of Northampton, as visiting his sister, and favoring Mr. Belden by preaching to the congregation of Newington. I suppose she closed her life at Bridgeport, with her son, Rev. Simon Backus, who was the minister of that place. Mr. Backus himself died in 1745, at Cape Breton, whither be had gone as chaplain in the colonial service, aged about forty-five years. He was a good minister, and lived in great harmony with his people."(Dr. Brace's Dis., pp. 14 and 15.) The following is the record of the society during the term of his service as pastor.

THE FIRST VOTES FOR THE SECOND MINISTER.

June 1, 1726: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, upon the first day of June, 1726, it was voted and agreed as followeth: It was voted and agreed, that all the votes preceding the 25th day of May, 1726, however weak and insufficient they be, they shall be accepted to be good, and are hereby made good and valuable." It was also voted, to proceed to get some suitable person upon probation to be our minister. It was also voted, that Dea. John Deming and John Stodderd do, in behalf of the Society, apply to Mr. Russel, junior, of Middletown, to come and preach here upon probation; and if he shall decline it, then Dea. John Deming is to proceed to make application to Simon Backus, of Norwich, to come here on the aforesaid purpose.

August 24, 1726: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held on the twenty-fourth day of August, 1726, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz.: It was voted and agreed to call Mr. Simon Backus to be our minister. Dea. John Deming, Samuel Hunn, a committee to treat with Mr. Backus in order to a settlement. It was voted and agreed to give Mr. Backus seventy pounds salary the first year, and to rise two pounds per year until we come to eighty pounds a year. It was voted to give Mr. Backus for a settlement one hundred pounds money when we receive it of the country or college, and sixty pounds as it is gathered in our country rates, and sixty pounds in labor towards building. The meeting is adjourned until the next Monday come sennight, at sun one hour high at night.

September 5, 1726: At a Society meeting continued by adjournment from August the 24th, 1726, to September the 5th, 1726, it was voted and agreed as followeth: Making void those two votes relating to a settlement and salary passed the 24th of August last. It was voted (17) and agreed, to give Mr. Simon Backus for a settlement one hundred and seventy-five pounds of the money given by the country and college, and all the money granted us in our country taxes, be it more or less. It was also voted, to give Mr. Simon Backus for a salary seventy pounds the first year, and so to rise as we rise in our lists until we come to ninety pounds per year, so to continue as long as he continues in the ministry with us. It was, voted, to give Mr. Simon Backus his yearly wood, and the use of the parsonage, so long as he continues in the work of the ministry with us. This meeting is adjourned to the next Friday, at sun one hour high at night. We then received Mr. Backus' answer, which is as followeth:

Mr. BACKUS' ANSWER TO THE SOCIETY OF NEWINGTON: "To the Society of Newington: "That respect you have put upon me in the several votes your committee appointed for that end have laid before me, calls for my particular acknowledgment, and to your votes of the 24th of August and of the 5th of this instant September, wherein you have manifested your desire of my settlement with you in the work of the ministry, and for that end have made proposals to me for my settlement and maintenance therein, as you desire (I) make this return by your committee. That in a due sense of my unworthiness to be employed in, and insufficiency for that great and solemn work of the ministry, I accept of your call to that work, and accept your proposal for my settlement and yearly maintenance. Desiring your earnest prayers with mine to the God of all grace that I may come to you in the fullness of the blessing of the Gospel of Christ. "SEPT. the 7, 1726. SIMON BACKUS."

November 21, 1726: (18) At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, upon the 21st day of November, 1726, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz.: We appoint by vote Wednesday, the 28th day of December next, for the ordination of the Rev. Mr. Backus. It was voted, that the present committee is to agree with the man that boards Mr. Backus to provide for him on the ordination day for victuals and drink convenient. It was voted and agreed, that Samuel Hunn, Joseph Hurlburt, Ebenezer Killborn, Caleb Androus, Isaac Buck, James Frances, Ebenezer Smith, should keep a tavern on the ordination day. It was voted that the present committee, Jabezeth Whittelsey, John Camp, Joseph Hurlbut, shall forthwith pay to Mr. Simon Backus the one hundred and seventy-five pounds money already voted to him on Sept. the 5th, 1726, taking his receipt, which shall be their discharge of said money.(The Committee paid the money the next day, as appears by the following receipt: "NOVEMBER, the 22, 1726. "Then received of the parish of Newington, the sum of one hundred and seventy-five pounds, money, by the hand of their committee chosen to receive and dispose of said money, namely: Deacon Whittelsey, Capt. John Camp, and Mr. Joseph Hurlbut, which money became due to me, the subscriber, by virtue of a vote passed by said parish, September the first, 1726. I say received by me. SIMON BACKUS. The sum contained in the above receipt I, the subscriber, promise and oblige myself to return unto the above said Committee, in case I don't settle in the work of the ministry among them. SIMON BACKUS.") It was voted and agreed for the 23 pounds, 10s. received for the Society, now in the hands of said Committee, Dea. Jabezeth Whittlesey, John Camp, Joseph Hurlbut, shall be distributed by them to the persons according to the charge they were at in the particulars following, to wit: the charge of bringing out Mr. Williams and his family, at his first coming, and charges of his ordination, and for raising of his house, and for his oven and well.

December 19, 1726: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington Parish upon the 19th day of December, 1726, lawfully assembled and held; it was voted and agreed as followeth: It was voted and agreed that Dea. John Deming, Samuel Hunn, Senior, Caleb Androus, should be a committee for the year ensuing to order the prudentials of the society according to the best of their discretion. It was voted, Daniel Curtis, Jonathan Whaples, Collectors, to gather the minister's rate and society rate. It was voted, that the money overplus in our last minister's rate should be laid out in meeting house, by the present committee. It was voted, to make a rate to defray the ministerial charge of the year past. It was voted, That Wednesday, the 25th of January next ensuing to be the day of ordination of Mr. Simon Backus, and the day of humiliation to be on Wednesday the eleventh day. (19) It was voted to have a pound near about Caleb Androus comer, and Isaac Buck, Ebenezur Killburn, to take care of said work in erecting a pound, and Ebenezur Killburn to be pound keeper.(The society not only managed the pounds and probably owned them, but also furnished the church edifice for meetings of military companies, as appears by the following warning. The meeting house was used as a Town Hall. Its sanctity was not considered profaned by such uses. To Ebenezur Kilborn Constable of Newington, Greeting: I, having received a special command from the Major Roger Woolcutt, Major of the County of Hartford, for a muster day of Newington parish, and also that part called the Beckleys. These are, therefore, in his Majesty's name, to requite you to warn all the inrolled citizens there, that they appear on Tuesday, the eighteenth day of this instant October, at nine of the (clock) in the morning on said day, at Newington meeting house, and there to attend on the choice of your officers. Hereof fail not. Dated in Wethersfield, October the 12th, 1726. THOMAS WELLS, Capt.) It was also voted, That the society charge, two pounds, nine shillings, eight pence, should be added to our minister's rate. It was voted, Dea. Jabezeth Whittlesey, Ebenezur Killburn, a school committee.

December 18, 1727: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the eighteenth day of December, 1727, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz: That those men, to wit: Dea. John Deming, Samuel Hunn, Sen'r, Caleb Androus, did agree with Ensign Richard Borman on the account of the ordination charge, we look upon that agreement to be good, and the levy made on that account to be good, and all those persons that are behind forthwith to pay their just dues. This agreement was voted. It was voted and agreed, That Ensign Richard Borman, Mr. Eliphalet Whittlesey, Joseph Hurlbut, a Committee for the year ensuing to order the prudentials of the society. It was voted, That Joseph Benton, Samuel Hunn, Ju'r, Collectors, to collect the minister's rate and society rate. It was voted and agreed, to make a rate on polls and all ratable estate to pay Mr. Backus according to agreement by the last of March next ensuing, and we agree that wheat shall go at 6s. 6d., rye at 4s. 6d., indian com at 3s. per bushel, to pay Mr. Backus' rate. It was voted, and agreed, to allow Jonathan Wright one pound, one shilling, for sweeping the meeting house, and to Jonathan Whaples eleven shillings; and what money is wanting in the last rate, is to be brought to the present committee, and they to add it to the present society charge. This meeting is adjourned to the first Monday in January next. January 1, 1727-8. The meeting was adjourned to the first Monday in May next ensuing.

May 6, 1728: (20) At a society meeting of Newington parish lawfully assembled upon the 6th day of May, 1728, it was voted and agreed as followeth: That whereas there is a certain piece or some part of the parsonage land in controversy between Abraham Woring and the Society, we agree to leave it to the arbitration of two indifferent men, and if they cannot agree, the two to choose an umpire, or third man, and that the said Abraham Woring resign the said land to the society or to Mr. Backus at the time of said vote,ówe vote and agree that Capt. John Camp, Ensign Richard Borman, Mr. Eliphalet \Vhittlesey a Committee to act in the Society's behalf, and are hereby impowered to choose one man, and Abraham Woring another, and to abide the award ; and this society grants a rate on polls anti all ratable estate to defray the charge if any ariseth, and to pay to said Abraham Woring what the arbitrators award to him said Woring. It was voted, that Joseph Hurlbut, Ebenezur Millburn, Josiah Willard a Committee to examine or inspect Dea. Jabezeth Whittlesey's accounts concerning his collectorship and committeeship about the meeting house, and to make return of his disposing of the society money to the next meeting.

December 16, 1728: (21) At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 16th day of December, 1728, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz: It was voted and agreed that Mr. Eliphalet Whittelsey, Joseph Hurlbut, Jonathan Stodderd a committee for to order the prudentials of the society for the year ensuing. It was voted and agreed John Patterson, Ephraim Whaples, collectors to gather the minister's rate and society rate. It was voted and agreed that the society charge, for the year past, seven pounds two shillings and six pence, to be added to the minister's rate, and this (society) grants by vote twenty pounds to be added and gathered with our minister's rate; and also to be laid out in our meeting house by the present committee. It was voted and agreed, that to pay our minister's rate, wheat (should be) at 6s. 6d. per bushel, rye at 4s. 6d. per bushel, Indian com at 3s. per bushel. It was voted and agreed, to have a school as the law directs as to time, and Samuel Churchel, Thomas Francis, a committee for the school, and what the country money don't do towards defraying the charge, the rest shall be raised on the polls of the children that go to school.

December 23, 1728: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 23d of December, 1728, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz: It was voted and agreed to raise a rate on polls and all rateable estate to defray the ministerial charge arising in our society. It was voted and agreed that all the votes made and passed on the 16th day of this instant shall be good and valuable, except the, choice of John Paterson, a collector, because he is under age; it was voted that Joseph Androus should be a collector. It was voted and agreed to raise a rate of six pounds for Mr. Backus's wood, and to go on in the same method as we did for Mr. Williams.

December 15, 1729: (22) At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 15th day of December, 1729, it was voted and agreed as followeth, viz: It was voted and agreed, Joseph Hurlbut, Capt. John Camp, Ensig Richard Borman (committee) for the year ensuing, with as full power as the selectmen in the towns, as to the business of our society. It was voted and agreed, David Wright, William Wells collectors, to gather our minister's rate and society rate. This society, by vote, grants a rate on polls and all ratable estate to defray the ministerial charge for the year past; it was voted that wheat (should be) at 7s. per bushel, rye at 5s. 8d., per bushel, indian com at 4s. per busbel, to pay our minister's rate. This society, by vote, grants four pounds to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, to the fast Committee Eliphalet Whittelsey, Joseph Hurlbut, Jonathan Stodderd, which they have already laid out on our meeting house. This society, by vote, grants twenty pounds to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, and to be laid out on our meeting house by Samuel Hunn, Senior and Josiah Willard, a committee appointed for that end, according to the best of their discretion. This society grants, by vote, two pounds nineteen shillings eight pence, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, to defray the charge arising by a certain arbitration between Deacon John Deming and Samuel Hunn, senr., in the behalf of this society, and Abraham Woring, about some part of the parsonage, awarded to him, said Woring, by Capt. Tho. Seymore and Isaac Heart, arbitrators. It was voted and agreed, Ebenezer Killburn and Nathaniel Churchel a committee to cover the school house.(This is the first mention of a school house in the records.) And we do grant four pounds, to be raised on polls and all other ratable estate, and laid out on the school house by the above said committee. It was voted and agreed to raise eight pounds on polls and all ratable estate for Mr. Backus' wood, in the method we did for Mr. Williams. We do, by vote, grant to Jonathan Wright, for sweeping our meeting house, one pound and eight shillings, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate. It was voted, That, whereas there is a difference between the society of Newington and Dea. Jabezeth Whittelsey, we do agree by vote to leave said difference to the (23) North Association of the County of Hartford, on the first Thursday of February next ensuing, at the dwelling house of Mr. Thomas Buckingham; and we agreed to abide their determination, provided the above said Dea. Jabezeth Whittelsey will leave said difference to the North Association, and abide their determination. And the grand committee, Joseph Hurlbut, Capt. John Camp, and Ensign Richard Borman, to represent the society, and act in their behalf. Ebenezer Killburn, Josiah Willard and Samuel Hunn, sen., to act with the above said committee. It was voted to begin our annual meeting at nine of the clock in the morning.

December 21, 1730: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 21st day of December, 1730, begun at our meeting house and adjourned to the house of Ephraim Whaples, by vote, voted and agreed: Capt. John Camp, Mr. Josiah Deming and Daniel Curtis, a committee to order the prudentials of our society for the year ensuing. Voted and agreed, Thomas Frances and David Hunn, collectors for the year ensuing. Also voted, to raise a rate of five pence half penny on polls and all ratable estate, to pay Mr. Backus' salary for the year past. It was voted and agreed, to take three pounds, thirteen shillings, one penny, out of the twenty pounds granted last year, to be laid out in our meeting house, to pay what was wanting in a rate granted to the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus in the year 1726. It was voted, to pay Mr. Backus' rate, wheat at 7s. per bushel, rye at 5s. per bushel, indian com at 4s. per bushel. We, by vote, grant ten pounds, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, for Mr. Backus' wood, in the same method as we agreed on to carry it to the Rev. Mr. Williams, at 3s. per load. It was voted to release Joseph Root his rate this year. Voted, Joseph Benton and Caleb Androus a school committee for this year. Also voted, one pound ten shillings to Jonathan Wright for sweeping our meeting house, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate. Also voted, to adjourn this meeting until next Monday, at twelve of clock.

December 20, 1731: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 20th day of December, 1731, voted and agreed as followeth; viz: (24) Voted and agreed, Sergeant Isaac Buck, David Wright and John Patterson, a committee for the year ensuing. Voted and agreed, Thomas Stodderd and Daniel Willard, collectors. Also voted and granted, a rate to be raised, five pence half-penny on the pound, on polls and all ratable estate, to the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, for his salary for the year past. Also voted, to raise a rate of ten pounds on polls and all ratable estate, for Mr. Backus wood, at four shillings per load, to be raised according to our vote January the 6th, 1725-6. Also voted, one pound ten shillings to the widow Sarah Whaples, for sweeping our meeting house, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate.

March 20, 1732: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 20th day of March, 173 1/2, it was voted and agreed as followeth: It was voted and agreed to put up a prayer to the General Assembly in May next ensuing, for some relief under our present circumstance relating to our minister. Also voted Samuel Hunn, sen., and John Patterson, a committee to go to the Assembly with a prayer, and to act according to the best of their discretion.(The committee went to the Assembly with the following prayer: To the Honorable General Assembly of Connecticut, in New England, holden at Hartford, May 11th, A. D. 1732. a office a more public benefit for the whole government, and left the poor parish of Newington, who were then but about three thousand 700 pounds in their public list, to seek for and settle another minister, the burden of which was great upon our small parish, though favored with some relief from this Honorable Assembly, which was just about what was given by the said parish to the Rev. Mr. Williams, which, we make bold to inform your Honors, did not make up our loss, because Mr. Williams, his having a good and large estate of his own, and that being principally in lands in and near our parish, could and did serve us much cheaper in the ministry than any other would, or, indeed, could, and we being poor, &c., and having proceeded to settle another minister with us, and we not being able to purchase him a settlement, nor able to do much for him, he purchased a settlement for himself, and that but a small one, whereby our present rev'd minister did run himself considerably into debt in the purchase aforesaid, whereof there remains yet unpaid about three hundred pounds, and the time that it should have been paid is some considerable time agone, and our minister is unable to pay that debt, neither is the parish able to pay it for him, being still poor and having now but about three thousand nine hundred (pounds) in the public list. And our said minister is daily exposed to be sued for the money, by reason whereof he informs us that he must be obliged to make sale of what he hath amongst us, for the payment of the debt and so leave us, if some other way be not found, speedily found, for the payment thereof, which would be attended with many inconveniences and consequences hurtful to our parish and threaten its dissolution. We, therefore, pray your Honors would compassionate us under our distressed circumstances, and, according to your wonted goodness, afford us some relief, and if you, in your great wisdom, think meet to grant us liberty to take out of your public treasury as much money as our country rates will pay in, in four years: And if your Honors should think it not proper to do that; you would be pleased to grant us our country rates for four years, and although that would not half pay the debt, yet we hope that with the contributions of some generously disposed gentlemen, and with what we shall be able to obtain in some other ways, we shall then be able to pay the debt, and relieve our rev'd pastor of the difficulties he is involved in by reason thereof, and that we may yet enjoy and be blest with the continuance of his ministry among us. And your memorialists, as in duty bound, shall ever pray.

Dated in Newington, May 16, 1732. SAMUEL HUNN, JOHN PATTERSON,- Agents.

In the Lower House,
The question was put whether anything should be granted on this memorial, Resolved in the negative. Test., JNO. RUSSELL, Clerk.

In the Upper House,
Read and concurred, Test., HEZ. WYLLYS, Secretary. Agents.)

Voted and agreed, That Samuel Hunn, sen. (be a committee) to treat with the Rev. Mr. Elisha Williams, to see if he will give some relief relatting to Mr. Backus's bonds, if we should attain to a prospect of clearing up the said bonds with Mr. Williams. Voted and agreed, To have a school as the law directs. Also voted, Isaac Buck and David Wright a school committee. Also voted, To adjourn this meeting until the last Monday in May next ensuing at three o'clock in the afternoon.

December 18, 1732: At a Society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 18th day of December, 1732, voted and agreed as followeth: It was voted, John Patterson, Ebenezer Killburn and Joseph Benton, committee for the year ensuing to order the prudentials of our society according to their best discretion. It was voted, Joshua Androus and William Smith, collectors. Also voted and granted, To raise a rate of five pence half-penny on the pound on polls and all ratable estate, for the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus's salary for the year past. Also voted, To the widow Sarah Whaples, one pound ten shillings, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, for sweeping our meeting house. (25) Also voted, To raise sixteen pounds on polls and all ratable estate, according to our vote January 6th, 1725-6. Also voted, Each man to have four shillings per load for Mr. Backus' wood. Also voted, To adjourn this meeting from our meeting house to the dwelling house of the widow Elizabeth Androus. Also voted and granted, To Joseph Hurlbut, jun., three pounds, eight shillings, six pence, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate. Also voted, To have a new seating of our meeting house. Also voted, Isaac Buck, Samuel Churchel and Pelatiah Buck, a committee to seat our meeting house.

April 30, 1733: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held, upon the 30th day of April, 1733, voted and agreed as followeth; Voted and agreed, Captain John Camp, moderator for this meeting. Also voted and agreed, Samuel Hunn, sen., and Joseph Hurlbut, sen., both of Newington, a committee to order the prudentials of the parsonage belonging to Newington parish, to sue or dispossess any person or persons that has, do, or shall enter on the said parsonage as trespassers, at the charge of the society.

December 17, 1733: At a society (meeting) of the inhabitants of Newington parish, upon the 17th day of December, 1733, lawfully assembled and held, voted and agreed as followeth: Voted and agreed, Joseph Benton, Dea. John Deming and Nathaniel Churchel, a committee for the year ensuing, with as much power as to the prudentials of our society, as the selectmen in the town. Also voted and agreed, Josiah Billburn and Pelatiah Buck, collectors to gather our minister and society rates. Voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus for his salary, five pence half penny on the pound, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate. Also voted, To raise a half penny on the pound on polls and all ratable estate, to be added to Mr. Backus' salary this year. Also voted, To raise a rate of sixteen pounds on polls and all ratable estate for Mr. Backus' wood, and each man shall be allowed four shillings per load if he bring good loads. Samuel Hunn, Sen., and Eliphalet Whittlesey a Committee to inspect the loads. And our Society's committee for the year ensuing to appoint and warn suitable days for the carrying of Mr. Backus' wood, and whomsoever don't carry his proportion of wood on the said days appointed by the Committee, shall pay according to our vote January the 6th, 1725-6. (26). Voted and granted, To the widow Sarah Whaples one pound, five shillings for sweeping our meeting house. Also voted, Joseph Hurlbut, twelve shillings. Also voted, To Samuel Hunn, Sen., and Joseph Hurlbut, Sen., the sum of four pounds, eleven shillings six pence. Also voted, To Ebenezer Killburn and Joseph Benton for charges past sixteen shillings: all to be raised on polls and all other ratable estate.

March 20, 1734: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 20th day of March, 1733-4, voted and agreed as followeth: Voted and agreed, Samuel Hunn, Sen., and Joseph Hurlbut, Sen., both of Newington, a Committee, to order the prudentials of the parsonage belonging to Newington parish, to defend said parsonage from any person or persons that has or shall illegally enter thereon, to sue or dispossess all such persons that shall enter thereon, to cultivate or improve said land without liberty of our society, or of the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, at the charge of the society.

December 16, 1734: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the 16th day of December, 1734, voted and agreed as followeth: Also voted, Lt. Martin Kellogg moderator for this meeting. (He was appointed a Captain by the General Assembly at their October Session, 1735.) Also voted, To adjourn this meeting from our meeting house to the dwelling house of Lt. Martin Kellogg, and there to hold our meeting.(This was probably the Williams house, which became his residence and in which he died Nov. 13, 1753, aged 68.) Also voted, Nathaniel Churchel, Samuel Hunn, Sen., and Ensign Richard Borman, a Committee for the year ensuing. Also voted, William Androus, Collector for our minister's rate, also voted Ebenezer Killburn, Collector, to collect our society rate. Also voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, for his salary, one hundred pounds for this year, to be raised on polls and all other ratable estate. Also voted, To raise eighteen pounds on polls and all other ratable estate, for Mr. Backus' wood: and each man shall be allowed 4s. per load, to be raised according to our vote and act, January the 6th, 1725-6, for the getting our minister's wood. Also voted, one pound to the widow Sarah Whaples for sweeping the meeting house. (27) Also voted, To finish the galleries in our meeting house, and lath and plaster the walls up to the plates and beams, and to glass the lower windows of our meeting house. Also voted, To raise fifty pounds on polls and all ratable estate to defray the charge of finishing our meeting house, that is to say, twenty and five pounds to be raised on the present list of our society, and to be paid to our Committee for that work by the last of March next ensuing, and twenty and five pounds to be raised on the next list, for the year 1735, and to be paid by the last of December next ensuing. Also voted, Lt. Martin Kellogg, Jonathan Whaples and Samuel Churchel, a Committee to finish our meeting house. Also voted, Lt. Martin Kellogg and David Wright, a school committee for the year ensuing, also voted to keep a school two months at the northern part of our society, and four months in the middle of our society, and two months at the southern part of our society. Also voted, Five pounds to the school if it be kept according to our votes. Also voted, Ensign Richard Borman and Mr. Abraham Woring to inspect the loads carried to Mr. Backus, and to allow four shillings per load, if good loads, if not, according to their judgment, they shall allow each one for his load or loads.

December 15, 1735: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 15th day of December, 1735, voted and agreed as followeth: voted, Capt. Martin Kellogg, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Samuel Hunn, Sen., David Wright, and David Griswould, a Committee to order the prudentials of our society for the year ensuing. Also voted, Gamaliel Borman, Collector to collect our minister's rate, also voted, Mr. Joseph Woodbridge, Collector to collect our society rate. Also voted, Caleb Androus, and Pelatiah Buck, a Committee for the also voted, Charles Hurlbut, Collector for the school. Also voted, That our Committee, viz: Capt. Martin Kellogg, Samuel Churchel, and Jonathan Whaples, shall have power to repair our meeting house, mend the roof, clapboarding, and underpinning. (28) Also voted, That the overplus money in our last minister's rate; now in William Androus' hand, two pounds seventeen shillings, to be given to the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus. Also voted and granted, To Mr. Simon Backus, one hundred and twenty pounds, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate for his salary his salary this year. Also voted, To raise eighteen pounds on polls and all ratable estate, according to our vote January the 6th, 1725-6. Each man to have four shillings per load if he carries good loads. Also voted, Samuel Hunn, Sen. and Mr. Eliphalet Whittelsey to inspect the loads carried on the day appointed by our Committee. Also voted, To widow Sarah Whaples, one pound ten shillings: also voted, to Mr. Elisha Mix, one pound: all to be raised on polls and all other ratable estate.

December 20, 1736: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 20th day of December, 1736, voted and agreed as followeth: Voted and agreed, Capt. Martin Kellogg, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, agreed, Hurlbut, Sen., John Patterson, Sen. and Caleb Androus, a Committee to order the prudentials of our society for the year ensuing, with as much power as the select men in the town. Also voted, Jabezeth Whittlesey, Jun., Collector to collect our minister's rate and society rate. Also voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, to raise a rate of sixpence on the pound on polls and all ratable estate, for his salary for this year. Also voted, Joseph Hurlbut, Sen., Caleb Androus, and John Patterson, rate makers for this year. Also Voted, To raise a rate of three farthings on the pound, on polls and all ratable estate to defray the charge already arisen in our meeting house, and for glass, and for mending the roof of our meeting house. Voted, to raise eighteen pounds on polls and all ratable estate for Mr. Backus' wood, and each man shall have four shillings per load, to be raised according to our vote January the 6th, 1725-6. Also voted, To seat our meeting house: also voted, Lt. Ephraim Deming Capt. Martin Kellogg and David Curtis, a Committee to seat our meeting house. (29) Also voted, To Caleb Androus one pound ten shillings for sweeping our meeting house. Voted, To Ephraim Whaples three shillings six pence. Voted, To Charles Hurlbut three shillings six pence. Voted, To Jonathan Whaples three shillings. Also voted, to erect a new pound in the place where the pound. Also voted, Pelatiah Buck, Charles Hurlbut, and Robert Wells, a Committee for the school. Also voted and agreed, Dea. Jabezeth Whittelsey, Lt. Richard Borman, a Committee in behalf of our society, to act with the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus about that part of our parsonage that is not yet fenced, to let out said land to such person or persons as shall fence said land, as they shall think fit until the fence be paid for.

December 19, 1737: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 19th day of December, 1737, voted and agreed as followeth: Also voted, Capt. Martin Kellogg moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Lt. Ephraim Deming, James Francis and Ebenezer Smith, a Committee for the year ensuing, to order the prudentials of our society. Also voted, That our Committee, Lt. Ephraim Deming, Mr. James Francis and Ebenezer Smith, (be) rate-makers for the year ensuing. Also voted, Joseph Deming, Collector, to collect our minister and society rates. Also voted and granted, one hundred and thirty pounds to be raised on polls and all ratable estate for the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus' salary for the year past. Also voted, Jonathan Whaples, Joshua Androus, a Committee for the school, for the year ensuing. Also voted and granted, Twenty-two pounds for Mr. Backus' wood, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, according to our act in the year 1726, and each man shall be allowed four shillings per load.

Also voted, That our Committee for the time being shall watch on (?) the loads or part of loads that are carried to Mr. Backus, and said Committee shall appoint three several days for carrying said wood, between this time and the (30) first of March next ensuing, and whosoever doth not carry his proportion of wood by the first of March, shall pay their wood rate in money, and to be collected by the Collector. Also voted, Seven pounds ten shillings for the school. Also voted and granted, To raise a rate of three farthings on the pound, on polls and all ratable estate, to defray our society charges.

December 18, 1738: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the 18th day of December, 1738, voted and agreed as followeth, viz: Voted and agreed, Capt. Martin Kellogg, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Ebenezer Smith, Thomas Francis and Mr. Josiah Deming, a Committee for the year ensuing, to order the prudentials of our society. Also voted, John Gillit, Collector, to collect our minister's rate and society rate. Also voted, That our Committee, Ebenezer Smith, Thomas Francis, and Mr. Josiah Deming shall be ratemakers for the year ensuing. Also voted, Mr. James Francis, Pelatiah Buck, and David Wright a school committee, and said David Wright a school collector. Also voted and granted, One pound ten shillings to Caleb Androus for sweeping our meeting house. Voted and granted, 4s. 6d. to Ephraim Deming, four shillings to Joseph Deming, for service done. Also voted, To raise twenty pounds on polls and all ratable estate for Mr. Backus' wood, and each man to be allowed four shillings per load, and our Committee to act according as we voted December the 19th, 1737. Also voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, for his salary for the year past, ninety pounds, to be paid in grain at the price that grain went at on the first of March, that year that ninety pounds became due to him, said Backus, by our contract or covenant in his first settling with us. Also voted, That the Rev. Mr. Backus, Mr. Josiah Deming, Ebenezer Smith and Thomas Francis, that they search and find out what the price of grain was on the first of March, the year above referred to. (31) Also voted, To raise a half farthing on the pound on polls and all ratable estate to defray our society charges. Also voted, To give or discharge the widow Beecraft (?) of her two last society rates. Also voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus 8s. 5d. already in his hands.

December 17, 1739: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish upon the seventeenth day of December, 1739, voted and agreed as followeth: Capt. John Camp, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Thomas Francis, Caleb Androus and Josiah Killburn, a Committee for the year ensuing to order the prudentials of our society. Also voted, Abraham Woring, Jun., Collector to collect Our minister's rate and society rate. Also voted and granted, To the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, for his salary for the year past, one hundred and forty pounds, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, to be paid in money or grain at the market price. Also voted, That the fourteen loads of wood already carried to Mr. Backus, shall be allowed and paid, four shillings per load to them that carried it. Also voted and granted, To our last committee, Josiah Deming, Thomas Francis, and Ebenezer Smith, three pounds, eight shillings, two pence. Also voted, To raise two farthings on the pound on polls and all ratable estate, to pay charges past, and for repairing our meeting house, and for making two horse blocks; to be done by our grand Committee. Also voted, James Francis, David Wright, and Joseph Benton, a school committee, also Joseph Benton, Collector, to collect our school money. Also voted, To hold our school, some part of the time, at the north end of our society, at some convenient place. Also voted, That for the future our annual meeting be held on the first Monday in December, beginning at ten of the clock in the morning.

December 1, 1740: (32) At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the first day of December, 1740, voted and agreed as followeth, viz: Voted and agreed, Dea. Jabezeth Whittelsey, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Mr. Joseph Woodbridge, Ensign John Patterson and Abraham Woring, a Committee for to order the prudentials of our society for the year ensuing, and also rate-makers for the year ensuing. Also voted, John Camp, Jun., Collector, for to collect our minister and society rate. Also voted, granted, one hundred and fifty pounds, to be raised on polls and all other ratable estate for Mr. Simon Backus' salary for the year past. Also voted, Twenty pounds to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, for Mr. Backus' wood, and each man shall have five shillings per load. Also voted, That our Committee set each man his part or proportion of wood, and appoint suitable time or times for carrying said wood, every man neglecting or refusing shall pay the money. Also voted, That our Collector shall gather said money of such person or persons that neglect or refuse. Also our Committee for the time being, shall inspect every man's load, and allow him five shillings for a good load, and so in proportion for a lesser quantity. Also voted, To raise two farthings on the pound on polls and all ratable estate, to defray the charge of a school, as the law directs, and other society charge of the year past. Also voted, Mr. James Francis, Ensign John Patterson, Joseph Benton, John Gillit and Samuel Churchel, a Committee for the school. Also voted, To have a school kept in our society six months as the law directs, to be kept at the south end of our society, and in the middle, and at the north end, and at west side of our society: and each part to have their proportion of time and money. Also voted, To erect a pound at or near Reuben Whaples' barn in our society. (33) Also voted, Abraham Woring, Sen. Joseph Hurlbut, Sen., a Committee to erect a pound in said place. Also voted, Reuben Whaples pound keeper.

October 12, 1741: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish, lawfully assembled and held upon the twelfth day of October, 12, 1741, voted and agreed as followeth: Voted and agreed, Capt. Martin Kellogg, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Twenty-five loads of wood to be forthwith carried to the Rev. Mr. Backus, and the charge of said wood at five shillings per load to be defrayed by our society. Also voted, Capt. Martin Kellogg, Lt. Ephraim Deming, Capt. John Camp, Josiah Killburn and John Gillit, a Committee to treat with the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, relating to his wood: either to get it by the cord or for some certain sum of money, as may be sufficient.

December 7, 1741: At a society meeting of the inhabitants of Newington parish lawfully assembled and held upon the seventh of December, 1741, voted and agreed as followeth: Voted and agreed, Joseph Hurlbut, moderator for this meeting. Also voted, Lt. John Patterson, Mr. Joseph Hurlbut, Sen., and Zebulon Robbins, a Committee for the year ensuing, to order the prudentials of our society. Also voted, Gideon Hunn, a Collector to gather our minister rate and society rate. Also voted and granted, one hundred and sixty pounds, to be raised on polls and all ratable estate, for Mr. Backus' salary for the year past. Also voted and granted, Twenty-four pounds to be raised on polls and all ratable estate for Mr. Backus' wood, and each man that carries wood to Mr. Backus, shall be allowed for a good load of wood, six shillings per load, and for lesser quantity in proportion, and our Committee for the time being, to inspect the loads, or part of loads so carried, and to allow in proportion of what we carry, and said Committee to appoint (a) suitable day for carrying said wood. (34) Also voted and granted, To Ebenezer Killburn, one pound ten shillings. Also voted and granted, Seven pounds twelve shillings to Capt. Martin Kellogg, for keeping school. Also voted, Samuel Churchel, Joseph Benton, and Josiah Killburn, a Committee for the school.((All the preceding records are in the hand writing of Josiah Willard, Clerk of the Society, from its beginning to this time. For the next two years, 1742, and 1743.)

December 3, 1744: (35) At a meeting of the inhabitants of the society of Newington, legally assembled and held on the 3d day of December, 1744. At said meeting, Peletiah Buck, David Wright and William Smith were chosen a society's committee for the year ensuing. At said meeting, Robert Wells was chosen clerk for this society and sworn. At said meeting, Oliver Atwood was chosen collector for the (year) ensuing to collect the rates. At said meeting, They agreed to give to the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus for his salary for the year past, one hundred and ninety pounds, old tenor. At said meeting, It was agreed that the school should be divided into four parts for the year ensuing. At said meeting, it was voted, That the west side people have a reasonable allowance in respect of the school for the time past. At said meeting, They voted ten pounds for the school. At said meeting, Lieut. John Paterson and Sergeant Ebben Smith were chosen a committee to get the country money from Farmington. At said meeting, it was voted, To Mr. Backus fifty pounds money, old tenor, for his fire-wood this present year; and any man hath liberty to pay his proportional part of said fifty pounds in green oak or walnut wood, corded up at Mr. Backus's door at or before the first day of February next, at 25 (?) shillings per cord. At said meeting, Josiah Killburn, John Camp and Eliphelet Whittlesey be a school committee for the year ensuing. At said meeting, voted, Thirty shillings for Sergt. Caleb Audrous for sweeping the meeting-house the year past. At said meeting, voted, That James Francis have seven shillings for a load of wood. At said meeting, voted, That the meeting should be dissolved. (There are no records for the years 1745 and 1746.) During the reign of King George II over Great Britain, extending from 1727 to 1760, a general European war broke out relating to the succession to the throne of Austria, made vacant by the death of the Austrian emperor, Charles VI. The succession of the eldestdaughter of Charles, Marie Theresa, had been guaranteed by a general treaty called the "Pragmatic Sanction;" yet on the death of the emperor, numerous competitors arose for different portions of his dominions. This involved Europe in the war of the "Austrian Succession," called, in relation to the operations in this country, "King George's War." England and France were arrayed upon opposite sides, and so far as they were concerned, the war lasted from 1744 to 1748. The most important event of the war in America was the siege and capture, by the colonies, of Louisburg, a French fortress on the south-east side of the island of Cape Breton, separated from Nova Scotia by the narrow channel of Canseau. It was strongly fortified, and was justly regarded by France as the Gibraltar of her American possessions. The expedition against Louisburg was projected in the winter of 1744-5, in Boston, by Gov. William Shirley. He proposed the plan to the colonial legislature of Massachusetts, then in session in Boston, who had previously bound themselves to secrecy. After a good deal of opposition, it was resolved by the assembly, by one majority, to undertake the expedition. Despatches were at once sent to the neighboring colonies to join and assist the enterprise. "Massachusetts and New Hampshire sent 8,250 land forces into the service, with what ships of force they had, and needful transports. Connecticut sent 500 land forces, in transports, with Capt. Prentis in the Defense, sloop, with 100 men for the sea service. Rhode Island sent Capt. Fones in the Tartar, with 90 men. Gov. Clinton sent 10 eighteen pounders from New York.(1 Conn. Hist. Soc. Col., 149-50. See also, Trumbull's Hist. of Conn.) The Connecticut forces sailed from the Harbor of New London, and arrived at Canseau (or Canso) April 25th, 1745, where they united with the other forces. On April 29th, the fleet sailed for Cape Breton, and arrived the next day at Chapeaurouge Bay.("April 14, 1745. Sunday, about eleven of the clock, the Connecticut fleet, consisting of seven transports under the convoy of Connecticut and Rhode Island colony sloops, sailed from New London."Rev. Adonijah Bidwell's Journal. (27 N. E. His. and Gen. Reg., 153. April, 1873.) It appears that Mr. Bidwell, who went as chaplain to the fleet, heard Rev. Mr. Williams preach at Louisburg, June 21st, 1745, from John 20:31; Aug. 21st, from Ps. 8: 4; and Sept. 15th, from Numb. 14: 17.) The enemy discovered the transports from the town, which was the first intimation they had of the design against them. The forces were landed, and after a siege which lasted till June 17th, 1745, the city of Louisburg and the island of Cape Breton were surrendered to the New England forces. After the object of the expedition had thus been attained, the fort had to be garrisoned. Connecticut kept 350 men there till about May 24th, 1746, when they were relieved by government forces. It was held by England till, by the treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, Oct., 18th, 1748, all conquests made by both parties were mutually restored, and Louisburg again went into the possession of the French. Great sickness and mortality prevailed among the troops in garrison during the winter following the capture of Louisburg. Rev. Simon Backus was the chaplain to the Connecticut forces at that time. Rev. Elisha Williams had been appointed chaplain in March, 1745.(In Feb., 1745, Capt. Martin Kellogg was appointed one of the captains" in the expedition against Cape Breton." State Archives, War, IV, 164.) He had probably resigned in August, 1745, as in that month the General Assembly passed a resolution desiring him to continue in that position. He did not, however, comply with their wishes, for in October, 1745, the Assembly passed the following resolution: "Resolved by this Assembly, that his Honor, the Governor, with the council of war at Milford, be impowered, and they are hereby impowered to supply our forces in garrison at Louisburg with a chaplain if need be." They appointed Mr. Backus, probably soon after. He went to Louisburg and there, after closing the eyes of many a son of Connecticut in death, he himself fell a victim to the prevailing sickness, and died March 15th, 1745-6.(1 Conn. Hist. Soc. Col., p. 162.) The parish of Newington was peculiarly unfortunate. It had given up its first pastor to serve the public benefit; now it had lost its second pastor while serving in a cause equally for the public good. Mr. Backus left a widow and a family of children, who had been dependent upon him for their support. In their straitened circumstances, they considered that they had a claim on the colony for relief. A claim which is generally recognized by all nations in granting pensions to the widows and orphans of those who have died in their country's service while "in the line of their duty." Mrs. Backus presented the following petition to the General Assembly: To the Honorable, the General Assembly of the Colony of Connecticut, now convened and sitting in Hartford, in. said Colony, this eighth day of May, Anno Domini, 1746 :

The memorial of Eunice Backus, of the parish of Newington, in the County of Hartford, humbly sheweth, That her late husband, the Rev. Mr. Backus, in compliance with public desire and order, was induced to leave his family and ministerial charge at Newington, and to repair to Louisburg, there to reside in quality of a chaplain to the troops from this Colony in garrison there : That not long after his arrival there, it pleased God so to dispose that he, in the general mortality, was carried to the place of silence : That what he carried and had, and left at Louisburg, to the amount of about X300, in clothing, money, etc., being on his decease shipped for transportation home, is since unquestionably lost, either in the seas or taken by the enemy : That over and above his annual salary, the small estate he left, or the utmost profit thereof, will go but a little way towards a subsistence for your poor memorialist and her seven (mostly) small children : That of her and family, chief comfort and, under God, principal dependence and support, in the prime and flower of his day for usefulness, she being so sorely bereaved, and that for the more public and common good: She thereupon humbly prays your Honors' kind and compassionate interposal in the premises in manner in any wise tending to her relief, and she, your Honors' poor, distressed memorialist, as in duty bound, shall ever pray, etc. Dated at Newington, this eighth day of May, Anno Domini. 1746.

EUNICE BACKUS.

The General Assembly were not deaf to her prayer. They passed the following resolution: Upon the memorial of Mrs. Eunice Backus, respecting the decease of her husband, the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, residing at Louisburg in quality of chaplain, etc., and the distressed state of her family thereupon, etc., and praying relief: Resolved by this Assembly, That the memorialist have granted to her for her and her family's present subsistence, to be paid out of the public treasury of this Colony, the sum of one hundred pounds, in old tenor bills. And that the further consideration of her said memorial be referred to the session of the General Assembly at New Haven, to be holden in October next. At the October session the Assembly made an additional appropriation for her benefit as follows: Upon the memorial of Mrs. Eunice Backus, of the parish of Newington, representing the grievous circumstances of herself and family, which hath happened by occasion of the death of her husband, the Rev. Mr. Simon Backus, who lately deceased, while in the service of this government at Louisburg, and particularly the loss of a considerable part of his estate, that happened thereby. And praying for relief, &c. Resolved by this Assembly; That the memorialist shall receive out of the public treasury of this colony the sum of two hundred pounds, in bills of credit of, the old tenor, over and above the hundred pounds granted to her by this Assembly in May last. The expedition for the capture of Louisburg had been successful beyond all anticipations. Its conquest was reverently attributed by some to the special favor of an overruling Providence, while others looked upon its incidents as touched with the hues of romance and adventure. The acquisition was hailed with general joy in New England, saddened, it is true, by the remembrance of the brave and precious ones who came not back with their comrades, but had been "carried to the place of silence." Soldier and chaplain slept together. Mrs. Backus was not alone in her distress at that time. Her experience has often been paralleled before and since. The fathers, and husbands, and sons who march to the cannon's mouth and die nobly for their country are not the only heroes. The bereaved mothers, and wives, and daughters who, for long years after, struggle at home and in obscurity in the unequal battle against unpropitious circumstances/ exhibit a heroism more enduring and a courage more severely tested. He who dies upon the battle field may feel in his heart that it is sweet to die for his country, but it is bitterness to his widow, who has his family of children to rear single-handed and alone. The death of the former is heralded abroad, and his memory is cherished by his grateful countrymen; the toils and trials of the other are unknown to fame, and only known to Him who knows all things, and who will at last bring all things into remembrance.

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