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Having heard that it is doubtful, whether the Reverend Mr. Leonard, from your colony, will have it in his power to continue as Chaplain, I cannot but express some concern, as I think his departure will be a loss.

His general conduct has been exemplary and praiseworthy; in discharging the duties of his office, active and industrious. He has discovered himself to be a warm and steady friend to his country, and taken great pains to animate the soldiers, and impress them with a knowledge of the important rights they are contending for. Upon the late desertion of the troops, he gave a sensible and judicious discourse, holding forth the necessity of courage and bravery, and, at the same time, of obedience and subordination to those in command.

In justice to the merits of this gentleman, I thought it only right, to give you this testimonial of my opinion of him, and to mention him to you, as a person worthy of your esteem and that of the public.


The Reverend Mr. Kirkland,† having been introduced to the honorable Congress, can need no particular recommendation from me. But as he now

*Governor Trumbull.

The Rev. Samuel Kirkland, for more than forty years the spiritual friend and teacher of the Oneida Indians. He was the father of the Rev. Dr. Kirkland, President of Harvard University. He died in the year 1808.

wishes to have the affairs of his mission and public employ put upon some suitable footing, I cannot but intimate my sense of the importance of his station, and the great advantages which may result to the United Colonies, from his situation being made respectable.

All accounts agree, that much of the favorable disposition shown by the Indians, may be ascribed to his labor and influence. He has accompanied a chief of the Oneidas to this camp, which I have endeavored to make agreeable to him, both by civility, and some small presents. Mr. Kirkland also being in some necessity for money, to bear his travelling expenses, I have supplied him with thirty-two pounds lawful money.


I have long had it on my mind, to mention to Congress, that frequent applications have been made to me, respecting the chaplains' pay, which is too small to encourage men of abilities. Some of them, who have left their flocks, are obliged to pay the parson acting for them more than they receive. I need not point out the great utility of gentlemen, whose lives and conversation are unexceptionable, being employed for that service in this army.

There are two ways of making it worth the attention of such. One is, an advancement of their pay; the other, that one chaplain be appointed to two regiments. This last, I think, may be done without inconvenience. I beg leave to recommend this mat

ter to Congress, whose sentiments hereon I shall impatiently expect.




It was Washington's custom, to have prayers in the camp, while (1754) at Fort Necessity. JARED SPARKS.

He with constancy attended public worship. During the war, he not unfrequently rode ten or twelve miles from camp, to attend public worship. AARON BANCROFT, D. D.

I never knew so constant an attendant on Church, as Washington. And his behavior in the House of God was, ever, so deeply reverential, that it produced the happiest effect on my congregation. Rev. LEE MASSEY, Rector of Pohick Church, of which Washington was an active Vestryman.

The General requires and expects of all officers and soldiers, not engaged on actual duty, a punctual attendance on divine service, to implore the blessings of Heaven upon the means used for our safety and defence.


The Continental Congress having ordered Friday, the 17th instant, to be observed as a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer, humbly to supplicate the mercy of Almighty God, that it would please him to pardon our manifold sins and transgressions, and to prosper the arms of the United Colonies, and finally * May, 1776.

establish the peace and freedom of America, upon a solid and lasting foundation; the General commands all officers and soldiers, to pay strict obedience to the orders of the Continental Congress, that, by their unfeigned and pious observance of their religious duties, they may incline the Lord and Giver of victory, to prosper our arms.


That the troops may have an opportunity of attending public worship, as well as to take some rest after the great fatigue they have gone through, the General, in future, excuses them from fatigue duty, on Sundays, except at the shipyards, or on special occasions, until further orders.


As a Chaplain is allowed to each regiment, see that the men regularly attend divine worship. 1777.

The situation of the army frequently not admitting of the regular performance of divine service on Sundays, the Chaplains of the army are forthwith to meet together, and agree on some method of performing it at other times, which method they will make known to the Commander-in-chief.


To-morrow being the day set apart by the honorable Congress for public thanksgiving and praise; and duty calling us devoutly to express our grateful acknowledgments to God, for the manifold blessings he

*December 18th, 1777.

has granted us, the General directs, that the army remain in its present quarters, and that the Chaplains perform divine service with their several corps and brigades; and earnestly exhorts all officers and soldiers, whose absence is not indispensably necessary, to attend with reverence the solemnities of the day.


Divine service is to be performed to-morrow," in the several brigades and divisions.

The Commander-in-chief earnestly recommends, that the troops not on duty should universally attend, with that seriousness of deportment and gratitude of heart, which the recognition of such reiterated and astonishing interpositions of Providence demands of




I have often been told by Colonel Ben Temple, (of King William county, (Virginia,) who was one of his aids in the French and Indian war, that, on sudden and unexpected visits into his marquee, he has more than once found him on his knees at his devotions. Rev. M. L. WEEMS, 1808.

The Commander-in-chief of the American armies was observed, [at Valley Forge,] constantly to retire, for the purpose of secret devotion. The Father of his country went alone, and sought strength and guidance from the God of armies and of light. The independence of our country was laid, not only in valor, and patriotism, and wisdom, but in prayer. ALBERT BARNES, D. D.

On Sundays, unless the weather was uncommonly severe, the President and Mrs. Washington attended divine service at Christ Church, [Philadelphia;] and in the evenings, the President read to Mrs. Washington, in her chamber, a sermon, or some portion from the sacred writings. No visitors, with the exception of Mr. Speaker Trumbull, were admitted on Sundays.

GFORGE W. P. CUSTIS, Grandson of Mrs. Washington.

* October 21st, 1781, just after the capitulation of Lord Cornwallis.

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