The SPIRITUAL GOVERNMENT. [The Societies.]36


And that a perpetual Succession of Protestant Divines of the Church of England may be provided for the Propagation of the true Christian Religion in the said Colony, his Excellency hath, by the Consent of the Council and Burgesses in Assembly, promoted a Law, vesting a Power in certain Trustees for erecting one Free School in each County: One of which is already begun at Annapolis, towards the Building of which, his Excellency hath given 50l. Sterling, the Secretary 5000, the Council 15000, and the Burgesses 45000 Pounds of Tobacco. And it is to be Endowed with 100l. Sterling per Annum for the Maintenance of one Master, and two Ushers, to whom his Excellency will at present allow 25l. Sterling per Annum, during his Government, and the Secretary 2000 Pounds of Tobacco, so long as he continues in his Office, for instructing the Youth of the said Province in Arithmetick, Navigation, and all useful Learning; but chiefly for the fitting such as are disposed to study Divinity, to be further educated at his Majesty's College Royal in Virginia; in order, upon their Return, to be ordained by the Lord Bishop of London's Suffragan residing in the Province, both for that purpose, and to supervise the Lives of the Clergy thereof; for whose Support also, at the Request and Recommendation of the Assembly, his Excellency hath settled a fair and competent Maintenance.

The Person now deputed by the Lord Bishop of London, to be his Commissary in Maryland for the Propagation of our most Holy Religion amongst the Infidels, for the Inducement of sober and serious young Divines to go to the foreign Plantations, and for the better qualifying them for so Noble and Christian an Employment, is now wholly busied in collecting of Parochial Libraries of choice and useful Books, for the perpetual Use of such of the Clergy, who shall now undertake that Voyage, and for all those who shall succeed them. And certainly a more suitable Encouragement to Men of good Parts and Inclinations, to go upon so blessed a Mission, could not be thought of: For as it is Books alone which will encourage the most Studious, Vertuous, and consequently the most useful Persons to go over; so it is an Encouragement that is in a manner necessary to be provided in foreign Plantations; since few or none at their first going over, are in a Condition to provide themselves therewith; and when they are there, Books are hardly to be met with by those who shall be able to buy them. And yet without a Competent Provision of several useful and necessary Books, it is morally impossible that any should be enabled to instruct their People.

And now that such excellent Works are jointly begun, and carrying on, What a happy Conjuncture is this (which perhaps may not again recur) for Persons who are piously disposed, to give their helping Hand towards such blessed and glorious Designs, as the propagating of true Christian Knowledge and Practice in Places formerly so much uncultivated therewith. Sure if he who Converteth a single Sinner from the Error of his Ways, shall hide a Multitude of Sins, what abundant matter for comfortable Reflexions upon a Death Bed, shall that Person lay up, who shall contribute towards providing of the most proper and genuine Means, next to the divinely inspired Writings, of Converting many poor Souls, not only in this, but in future Generations, even so long as the Sun and Moon endureth.

Benedicat Deus Operi & faventibus.

Upon the Death of King William, the Founder, Address being made by the Society to Queen Anne, she answered them, that she should be always ready to do her Part, towards the promoting and encouraging so good a Work. And she shewed here Favour to it by her Princely Magnificence, when the Affair was in private Hands. The Work hath since gone on with great Success. Correspondences begun, Deputations settling at home; many Subscriptions made, several Benefactions brought in; and divers prudential Ways and Means taken for the Conversion of the Indians, and settling the State of Religion in the Queen's Foreign Dominions, by supplying with able and good Ministers the Natives, as well as the English; appointing Catechists and Schoolmasters for the Slaves with other ignorant Persons; and sending over Libraries for the Use and Improvement of the Clergy, as well as practical Treatises for the Laity.

Places to be thus supplied with Ministers, and Schools and Libraries in the English Dominions on the Continent of North America, are from North-East and South-West, with the Indian Nations bordering upon them; the five Nations of the Iroquois, commonly called The praying Indians; New England, or Massachusets, with the neighbouring Colonies; New York, wherein are five English Counties, and five Dutch; New Jersey, East and West Pensylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Carolina, North and South; the Yammon Sea Indians, Newfoundland, Rhode Island, belonging to New York, Long Island belonging to New England, Jamaica, Antegoa, Montserrat. Besides Factories in Europe, Mosco, and Amsterdam.

The numerous Places to be supplied with Ministers.

There are earnest Addresses from divers Persons of the Continent and Islands adjacent, for a Suffragan, to Visit the several Churches, Ordain Ministers, Confirm the younger Sort, and Consecrate Places for Divine Worship. Accordingly the Society intended to have six Suffragans, and hoped to allow them 600l. a Year.


George Keith, and John Talbot his Assistant, were some Years ago Itinerant Missionaries, and had an honourable Allowance, suitable to their expensive Undertaking. Keith after some time came back.

Itinerant Missionaries.

The said Mr. Keith and Mr. Talbot went out on this Mission in April, Anno 1702, and returned back August, Anno 1704. They travelled on the Continent of North America, between Piscataway River in New England, and Caratuc in North Carolina, a space extending in length about 800 Miles. Within which Bounds were ten distinct Colonies and Governments, all under the Crown of England. They went twice over most of those Governments, and preached often in many of them; particularly in Pensylvania, West and East Jersey, and New York Provinces; where they continued longest, and found the greatest Occasion for their Service. His and his Fellow Talbots Success was, that the People were generally well affected to the Doctrine that they preached, and joined with them decently in the Liturgy, and publick Prayers, and Administration of the Sacraments after the Usage of the Church of England. And where Ministers were wanting, as there were in many Places, the People earnestly desired them to present their Requests unto the honourable Society, to send Ministers unto them; which accordingly Mr. Keith, since his Return home, hath done. And the Society hath sent to such Places as seemed most to want it, considerable Numbers of Missionaries.

Brief Account of this Mission.

Keith's Journ. p.82. print. 1706.

Many that had been Strangers to the Way of the Church of England, after they observed it in the publick Prayers, and in reading the Lessons of the holy Scriptures, and the manner of the Administration of Baptism, and the Lord's Supper, were greatly affected with it. Many of those