It is difficult to imagine Jonathan Edwards countenancing the “Confus'd, but very Affecting Noise” that erupted in Suffield, Massachusetts, on July 6, 1741. Yet there he stood, his loud voice rising in prayer above the din that emanated from an assembly of more than two hundred boisterous men and women who had gathered to listen to his exhortations in the “two large Rooms” of a private house. On the previous day, the visiting Northampton, Massachusetts, revivalist had administered the sacrament to nearly five hundred Suffield communicants, ninety-seven of whom had joined the church that very day. It was an extraordinary event—quite possibly the largest oneday church admission ritual ever observed in colonial New England.
2. Samuel Phillips, Savage, “Extract from a Letter,” 6–7 July 1741, Samuel P. Savage Papers, series II, box 1, Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston. The full text of this manuscript appears in the Appendix below. Suffield was part of Hampshire County, Massachusetts, until 1749, when political jurisdiction over the town (along with its neighbor, Enfield, across the river) was transferred to Connecticut.
3. In an exhaustive survey of church membership records from nearly 140 churches in eastern New England, J. Richard Olivas discovered no parish that admitted as many new communicants in a single month as Edwards did at the July 5 sacrament in Suffield: “Great Awakenings: Time, Space, and the Varieties of Religious Revivalism in Massachusetts and Northern New England, 1740–1748” (Ph.D. diss., University of California Los Angeles, 1997), 482–624. Edwards claimed to have received “fourscore” communicants “at one time” during the Northampton revival of 1734–35, but his fragmentary church records preclude confirmation of this assertion: A Faithful Narrative of the Sur- prizing Work of God (London, 1737), reprinted in Edwards, , The Works of Jonathan Edwards (hereafter WJE), vol. 4, The Great Awakening, ed. Goen, C. C. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1972), 157.
4. See Appendix.
5. For a brief account of Savage's interest in the revivals, see Winiarski, Douglas L., “‘A Jornal of a Fue Days at York’: The Great Awakening on the Northern New England Frontier,” Maine History 42 (2004): 49. On the broader significance of letters and communication networks during the Awakening, see John, Fea, “Wheelock's World: Letters and the Communication of Revival in Great Awakening New England,” Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society 109 (1999): 99–144.
6. Ola Elizabeth, Winslow, Jonathan Edwards, 1703–1750: A Biography (New York: Macmillan, 1940), 190.
7. Writing in 1949, Edwin H. Cady first claimed that the “springs” of Sinners' success lay in Edwards's literary artistry: “The Artistry of Jonathan Edwards,” New England Quarterly 22 (1949): 61–72, quote on 619 (hereafter NEQ); and his assumption undergirds a half century of subsequent scholarship. In a telling admission, Edward J. Gallagher recently conceded that “Accounting for the demonstrable efficacy of ‘Sinners’ in the public sphere ultimately involves analyzing the tricky relationships among text, times, occasion, and the specific audience,” but he follows Cady in restricting his argument exclusively to Edwards's rhetorical strategies: “’Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God’: Some Unfinished Business,” NEQ 73 (2000): 202–21, quote on 203. The purpose of this essay is to examine these previously ignored contextual issues. To date, the only effort to address Sinners' local context is social historian Pudaloff's, Ross J. “'Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God‘: The Socio-economic and Intellectual Matrices of Edwards' Sermon,” Mosaic 16 (1983): 45–64; however, his argument is based on flawed assumptions about the nature of eighteenth-century New England society that have been successfully challenged over the past two decades. For literary studies of Sinners, see, in addition to the above, Davidson, Edward H., Jonathan Edwards: The Narrative of a Puritan Mind (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1966), 76–82; Brewer, Paul D., “The ‘Sensation’ in ‘Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,’” Radford Review 23 (1969): 181–91; Buckingham, Willis J., “Stylistic Artistry in the Sermons of Jonathan Edwards,” Papers on Language and Literature 6 (1970): 136–51; Annette, Kolodny, “Imagery in the Sermons of Jonathan Edwards,” Early American Literature 7 (1972): 172–82; Kimnach, Wilson H., “The Brazen Trumpet: Jonathan Edwards's Conception of the Sermon,” in Jonathan Edwards: His Life and Influence, ed. Conrad, Cherry and Charles, Angoff (Rutherford, N.J.: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1974), 29–44; Scheick, William J., The Writings of Jonathan Edwards: Theme, Motif, and Style (College Station: Texas A & M University Press, 1975), 72–79; Robert Lee, Stuart, “Jonathan Edwards at Enfield: ‘And Oh the Cheerfulness and Pleasantness,’” American Literature 48 (1976): 46–59; Terrence, Erdt, Jonathan Edwards: Art and the Sense of the Heart (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1980), 70–77; Steele, Thomas J. and Delay, Eugene R., “Vertigo in History: The Threatening Tactility of ‘Sinners in the Hands’” Early American Literature 18 (1983–1984): 242–56; Rosemary, Hearn, “Form as Argument in Edwards' ‘Sinners in the Hands of Angry God’” CLA Journal 28 (1985): 452–59; and Leo Lemay, J. A., “Rhetorical Strategies in Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God and Narrative of the Late Massacres in Lancaster County,” in Benjamin Franklin, Jonathan Edwards, and the Representation of American Culture, ed. Oberg, Barbara B. and Stout, Harry S. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993), 186–203.
8. As Leigh Eric Schmidt writes in a recent review essay, “It has become a ritual incantation to decry how misled the public has been about Edwards by all those anthologists who keep reprinting the same damn sermon over and over again”: “The Edwards Revival: Or, The Public Consequences of Exceedingly Careful Scholarship,” William and Mary Quarterly, 3rd ser., 58 (2001): 485 (hereafter WMQ). Studies that downplay Sinners as unrepresentative of Edwards's theology and homiletic strategies include Conrad, Cherry, The Theology of Jonathan Edwards: A Reappraisal (Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books, 1966), 1; Alan, Heimert, Religion and the American Mind: From the Great Awakening to the Revolution (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1966), 39–40; Stout, Harry S., The New England Soul: Preaching and Religious Culture in Colonial New England (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986), 228–31; Jenson, Robert W., America's Theologian: A Recommendation of Jonathan Edwards (New York: Oxford University Press, 1988), 101; McDermott, Gerald R., Jonathan Edwards Confronts the Gods: Christian Theology, Enlightenment Religion, and Non-Christian Faiths (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), 3; and Amy Plantinga, Pauw, The Supreme Harmony of AH: The Trinitarian Theology of Jonathan Edwards (Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans, 2002), 7–8. Prominent works by theologians and historians that offer only cursory discussions of the Enfield sermon or ignore the text altogether include Roland, AndréDelattre, Beauty and Sensibility in the Thought of Jonathan Edwards: An Essay in Aesthetics and Theological Ethics (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1968); Norman, Fiering, Jonathan Edwards's Moral Thought and Its British Context (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1981); Sang Hyun, Lee, The Philosophical Theology of Jonathan Edwards, expanded ed. (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2000); Guelzo, Allen C., Edwards on the Will: A Century of American Theological Debate (Middletown, Conn.: Wesleyan University Press, 1989); Leon, Chai, Jonathan Edwards and the Limits of Enlightenment Philosophy (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998); and McClymond, Michael J., Encounters with God: An Approach to the Theology of Jonathan Edwards (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998). Neither of the two recent magisterial histories of theology in early America mention Sinners: Holifield, E. Brooks, Theology in America: Christian Thought from the Age of the Puritans to the Civil War (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2003); Noll, Mark A., America's God: From Jonathan Edwards to Abraham Lincoln (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002), and references to it have appeared only a handful of times in the five-decade history of the WJE project, excluding Wilson H. Kimnach's introduction to the sermon volumes and the recent critical edition of Edwards's Awakening-era sermons. There are signs, however, that the trend identified by Schmidt has moderated over the past several years. Pauw revises her earlier assessment of Sinners in her “Editor's Introduction” to WJE, vol. 20, The “Miscellanies“: 833–1152, ed. Pauw, (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2002), 4, n. 6; and Marsden, George M. offers a useful corrective in Jonathan Edwards: A Life (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2003), 221.
9. Marsden's award-winning biography—which includes a detailed account of Edwards's involvement with the local revivals in the upper Valley—exemplifies this interpretive paradigm. He rightfully acknowledges that “ecstatic manifestations” of religious revivalism “provide the context for the most famous episode in Edwards' career,” and he even mentions the “tremendous revival” in towns across the river. Yet Marsden elides Edwards's role in promoting the Suffield awakening, denigrates the authenticity of “convulsions, rages, seizures, and faintings,” and associates such “spiritual hysteria” exclusively with other itinerant preachers, most notably Jonathan Parsons, Eleazar Wheelock, and Benjamin Pomeroy. And although Marsden surveys the contents of Sinners, he also labors to distance Edwards from his most awakening sermon by carefully counterbalancing his reading of the controversial sermon with an extended analysis of his more gentle “pastoral” letter to Suffield resident Deborah Hathaway (discussed below)—a letter that he drafted before, not after his visit to Enfield. Thus, Marsden concludes that Edwards was more of a counselor than a fiery revivalist and that his success at Enfield was due primarily to the “hysteria” created by his less cautious colleagues: Jonathan Edwards, 214–26.
Gura's, Philip F. recent Jonathan Edwards: America's Evangelical (New York: Hill and Wang, 2005), 117–18, is the only biography that places Edwards in Suffield prior to his performance of Sinners. For studies that situate Edwards's moderate revival theology in opposition to New Light radicalism, see William, Breitenbach, “Piety and Moralism: Edwards and the New Divinity,” in Jonathan Edwards and the American Experience, ed. Hatch, Nathan O. and Stout, Harry S. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1988), 177–204; Breitenbach, , “Religious Affections and Religious Affectations: Antinomianism and Hypocrisy in the Writings of Franklin and Edwards,” in Benjamin Franklin, Jonathan Edwards, and the Representation of American Culture, ed. Oberg, and Stout, , 13–26; Ava, Chamberlain, “Self-Deception as a Theological Problem in Jonathan Edwards's ‘Treatise Concerning Religious Affections’” Church History 63 (1994): 541–56; Christopher, Grasso, A Speaking Aristocracy: Transforming Public Discourse in Eighteenth-Century Connecticut (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1999), 86–143. Of these, only Britenbach's 1993 essay notes that Edwards, himself, had at one time “succumbed to the temptations of antinomianism,” though he provides no evidence in support of this provocative assessment (20). Amy Schrager Lang explores the connections between Edwards and the Antinomian Controversy in “‘A Flood of Errors’: Chauncy and Edwards in the Great Awakening,” in Jonathan Edwards and the American Experience, ed. Hatch, and Stout, , 160–73. Both David S. Lovejoy and Michael J. McClymond have argued that Edwards occasionally appropriated the category of enthusiasm for rhetorical purposes, yet both carefully circumscribe the term and its relevance to his thought: Lovejoy, , Religious Enthusiasm in the New World: Heresy to the Revolution (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1985), 189–93; McClymond, , Encounters with God, 109.
10. The most perceptive and judicious account of Edwards's career as a revivalist is Kenneth Pieter, Minkema, “The Edwardses: A Minsterial Family in Eighteenth Century New England” (Ph.D. diss., University of Connecticut, 1988), 206–70. Although he devotes little space to Sinners or local events in the upper Valley, Minkema's contention that “Edwards was composing his reservations on the awakenings and separating true signs of conversion and grace from false ones even as he helped to cause commotions” (256–57) anticipates the argument that follows. See also Stout's, Harry S. excellent chronological overview of this period in Edwards's life in his “Preface to the Period,” WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, ed. Stout, and Hatch, Nathan O. with Farley, Kyle P. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2003), 29–47.
11. The legendary story of Edwards and the bell rope is one of the classic myths of early American religious history, and many scholars have followed Perry Miller in accepting its authenticity. “One who heard him,” Miller wrote in a seminal study of Sinners, “described his method of preaching: he looked all the time at the bell rope (hanging down from the roof at the other end of the church) as though he would look it in two; he did not stoop to regard the screaming mass, much less to console them.” According to Ken Minkema, this story first appeared in an early-twentieth-century manuscript notebook by William Edwards Park:
[Edwards's] dignified attitude in the pulpit, however, did not restrain the levity of some who ought to have been impressed by it. In many old meeting houses of New England the bell rope descended from the belfry to the front gallery in full sight of the congregation. One Sabbath, the bell rope which had been worn out by long continued friction with the ceiling of the Northampton sanctuary parted and fell. Some of the young men who saw it amused themselves that the rope was cut asunder by his sharp eyes directed to that part of the ceiling where the pastor's eye was turned to.
There is little contemporary evidence from the 1740s to support the authenticity of Park's reminiscence. For one thing, Edwards's pulpit faced the front entrance of the Northampton meetinghouse, and the bell rope hung out of sight in an enclosed tower at one end of the building. More important, Edwards—along with many of his itinerating peers that are discussed in the pages that follow—readily embraced the theatrical preaching innovations of George Whitefield. In the spring of 1741, for example, he started modifying his sermon notes in order to create space for extemporaneous speech and impromptu exhortations. Samuel Hopkins—Edwards's student and an important figure in the Suffield story recounted here—also began preaching extemporaneously while living with Edwards's family in Northampton during the winter of 1741–42. And yet the legend of Edwards's “quiet intensity” and “dignified attitude in the pulpit” persists. Although several later sources suggest that Edwards preached “with solemnity” and “gravity” in a “low and moderate voice”—“destitute of gesture” and “without any Agitation of Body”—nearly all of them appear in the works of his students or descendants, who were committed to promoting a moderate revival tradition shorn of offensive enthusiasm. See Perry, Miller, “Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening,” in Errand into the Wilderness (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1956), 155; William Edwards, Park, “The Edwardean,” Jonathan Edwards Collection, box 37, folder 1668, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University, New Haven, Conn., 126; Kenneth P. Minkema [Kenneth.Minkema@yale.edu], February 9, 2005, Internet; Kimnach, Wilson H., “General Introduction to the Sermons: Jonathan Edwards' Art of Prophesying,” WJE, vol. 10, Sermons and Discourses, 1720–1723, ed. Kimnach, (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1992), 62–63; Samuel Hopkins, Journal, 1741–1744, Simon Gratz Papers, Sermon Collection, box 6, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Winslow, , Jonathan Edwards, 129. For images of the 1737 Northampton meetinghouse, see WJE, vol. 19, Sermons and Discourses, 1734–1738, ed. Lesser, M. X. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2001), 31; and Solomon, Clark, Historical Catalogue of the Northampton First Church, 1661–1891 (Northampton, Mass.: Gazette, 1891). Later accounts of Edwards's preaching style include Thomas Prince to Thomas, Prince Jr., 26 11 1744, The Christian History 2 (1744): 390; Samuel, Hopkins, The Life and Character of the Late Reverend Mr. Jonathan Edwards (Boston: S. Kneeland, 1765), 48; and Timothy, Dwight, Travels in New England and New York, 4 vols., ed Barbara, Miller Solomon with King, Patricia M. (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1969), 4:230–32.
12. Gaustad, , Great Awakening in New England, 82; Perry, Miller, “The Marrow of Puritan Divinity,” in Errand into the Wilderness, 98.
13. Edwards, , The Distinguishing Marks of a Work of the Spirit of God (Boston, 1741), reprinted in WJE, vol. 4, The Great Awakening, ed. Goen, , 241–44; Ava, Chamberlain, “Brides of Christ and Signs of Grace: Edwards's Sermon Series on the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Virgins,” in Jonathan Edwards's Writings: Text, Context, Interpretation, ed. Stein, Stephen J. (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1996), 3–18; Edwards, , “A City on a Hill,” WJE, vol. 19, Sermons and Discourses, 1734–1738, ed. Lesser, , 537–59; Chamberlain, , “The Grand Sower of the Seed: Jonathan Edwards's Critique of George Whitefield,” NEQ 70 (1997): 368–85; Chamberlain, , “Bad Books and Bad Boys: The Transformation of Gender in Eighteenth-Century Northampton, Massachusetts,” NEQ 75 (2002): 179–203. In addition to the works cited above, detailed discussions of Edwards's revival theology include Tracy, Patricia J., Jonathan Edwards, Pastor: Religion and Society in Eighteenth-Century Northampton (New York: Hill and Wang, 1979), 109; and Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 201–305. Avihu Zakai goes so far as to claim that Edwards's moderate position “was grounded essentially in the premises of the redemptive mode of historical thought that he had developed” in his 1739 sermon series on A History of the Work of Redemption and that the inner logic of his philosophy of history “determined his rhetoric during the Great Awakening” well in advance of Whitefield's first New England tour: Jonathan Edwards's Philosophy of History: The Reenchantment of the World in the Age of Enlightenment (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2003), 274.
14. On radical evangelicalism in early America, see McLoughlin, William G., New England Dissent, 1630–1833: The Baptists and the Separation of Church and State, 2 vols. (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1971),1:340–59; Marini, Stephen A., Radical Sects of Revolutionary New England (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1982), 11–24; Susan, Juster, Disorderly Women: Sexual Politics & Evangelicalism in Revolutionary New England (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1994), 14–45; Rawlyk, George A., The Canada Fire: Radical Evangelicalism in British North America, 1775–1812 (Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1994), xiii–xix.
15. Edwards, , Distinguishing Marks, 202; “Diary of the Reverend Stephen Williams,” 1715–1982, 10 vols., typescript, Storrs Public Library, Longmeadow, Mass., 3:375 (hereafter DSW).
16. Jonathan, Edwards, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God (Boston, 1742), reprinted in WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, eds. Stout, and Hatch, with Farley, 417.
17. DSW, 3:375–76. Alexander Medlicott, Jr., reprints Williams's account and provides a helpful analysis of subsequent events in his “In the Wake of Mr. Edwards's ‘Most Awakening’ Sermon at Enfield,” Early American Literature 15 (1980): 217–21.
18. Dwight, Sereno E., ed., The Works of President Edwards, 10 vols. (New York: S. Converse, 1829–1930), 1:145. The argument in this section builds upon the pioneering research of Kevin Michael, Sweeney in “River Gods and Related Minor Deities: The Williams Family and the Connecticut River Valley, 1637–1790,” 2 vols. (Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 1986), 225–87. See also Winslow, , Jonathan Edwards, 175–93; Tracy, , Jonathan Edwards, Pastor, 131–45; and Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 214–26.
19. Jonathan Edwards to Benjamin Colman, 9 March 1741, and Edwards to Thomas Prince, 12 December 1743, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, George S. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1998), 88–89, 116.
20. Stephen Williams to Eleazar Wheelock, 16 March and 15 April 1741, #741216, #741265, Eleazar Wheelock Papers, Dartmouth College Library, Hanover, N.H. (hereafter WP); DSW, 3:349–72; Diary of the Rev. Daniel Wadsworth, 1737–1747 (Hartford, Conn.: Lockwood and Brainerd, 1894), 59–67.
21. George, Whitefield, A Continuation of the Reverend Mr. Whitefield's Journal, from a Few Days after His Arrival at Savannah … to His Leaving Stanford (Philadelphia, Penn.: B. Franklin, 1741), 110–11; DSW, 3:352, 355, 359–60; Jonathan Edwards, Sermon on Luke 19:41, April 1741, Jonathan Edwards Collection, box 8, folder 597, Beinecke Rare Books and Manuscripts Library, Yale University, New Haven, Conn. I thank Mark Valeri for sharing his notes on this sermon.
22. Edwards to Deborah Hathaway, 3 June 1741, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 91–95. Claghorn sketches the nineteenth-century publishing history of Edwards's letter in his headnote on 90–91.
23. Diary of Daniel Wadsworth, 59–72; Historical Catalogue of the First Church in Hartford, 1633–1885 (Hartford: Case, Lockwood, and Bainerd, 1885), 49.
24. DSW, 3:365; Williams to Wheelock, 16 March and 15 April 1741.
25. DSW, 3:368–71.
26. See Appendix.
27. I am unable to explain why the author of the Savage manuscript mistakenly claimed that the Edwards converts were “middle aged,” especially since the predominant discourse of the Awakening focused on the youthfulness of the revivals. For statistical comparisons with other New England communities, see Bumsted, J. M., “Religion, Finance, and Democracy in Massachusetts: The Town of Norton as a Case Study,” Journal of American History 57 (1971): 817–31; James, Walsh, “The Great Awakening in the First Congregational Church of Woodbury, Connecticut,” WMQ 28 (1971): 542–62; Greven, Philip J. Jr., “Youth, Maturity, and Religious Conversion: A Note on the Ages of Converts in Andover, Massachusetts, 1711–1749,” Essex Institute Historical Collections 108 (1972): 119–34; Moran, Gerald F., “Conditions of Religious Conversion in the First Society of Norwich, Connecticut, 1718–1744,” Journal of Social History 5 (1972): 331–43; Willingham, William F., “Religious Conversion in the Second Society of Windham, Connecticut, 1723–43: A Case Study,” Societas 6 (1972): 109–19; Willingham, , “The Conversion Experience During the Great Awakening in Windham, Connecticut,” Connecticut History 21 (1980): 34–61; Grossbart, Stephen R., “Seeking the Divine Favor: Conversion and Church Admission in Eastern Connecticut, 1711'1832,” WMQ 46 (1989): 696–740; Winiarski, Douglas L., “All Manner of Error and Delusion: Josiah Cotton and the Religious Transformation of Southeastern New England, 1700–1770” (Ph.D. thesis, Indiana University, 2000), 412–27; Minkema, Kenneth P., “Old Age and Religion in the Writings and Life of Jonathan Edwards,” Church History 70 (2001): 674–704.
28. See Appendix (below).
29. DSW, 3:374–75.
30. DSW, 3:375.
31. Benjamin, Trumbull, A Complete History of Connecticut, 2 vols. (New Haven: Maltby, Goldsmith, and Samuel Wadsworth, 1818), 2:145. On Trumbull's conservative motives in reshaping both Edwards's Enfield performance and the cultural legacy of the Great Awakening, see Conforti, Joseph A., Jonathan Edwards, Religious Tradition, and American Culture (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995), 18–20.
32. Joseph, Tracy, The Great Awakening: A History of the Revival of Religion in the Time of Edwards and Whitefield (1842; reprint Carlisle, Perm.: Banner of Truth, 1976), 216; Perry, Miller, Jonathan Edwards (New York: W. Sloane, 1949), 145; Cady, , “Artistry of Jonathan Edwards,” 61, 71; Christopher, Lukasik, “Feeling the Force of Certainty: The Divine Science, Newtonianism, and Jonathan Edwards's ‘Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God,’” NEQ 73 (2000): 233; Gallagher, , “Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God,” 203; Stout, , “Preface to the Period,” WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, 33; Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 219–20. In addition to the works listed above, studies that offer a negative assessment of the Enfield congregation on the basis of Trumbull's account include Gaustad, , The Great Awakening in New England, 48; Erdt, , Jonathan Edwards, 76–77; and Pudaloff, , “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” 48. It is interesting to note that the current website of the Jonathan Edwards Center at Yale University—perhaps the most ambitious and sophisticated digital history initiative ever attempted and the future clearinghouse of all of Edwards's major published and unpublished works—maintains that Sinners was “aimed at a particularly hard-hearted congregation”: (http://edwards.yale.edu/major-works/sinners-in-the-hands-of-an-angry-god/ [accessed March 4, 2005]). Even Gura's sensitive treatment of Sinners replicated this entrenched mythology when he suggested—despite evidence to the contrary (see below)—that revivalists such as Wheelock and Meacham “had little success” in Enfield “until Edwards arrived”: Jonathan Edwards, 118.
33. Pudaloff, , “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” 45–64; Jackson, Turner Main, Society and Economy in Colonial Connecticut (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1985), 134. Tracy, Cf., Jonathan Edwards, Pastor, 91–108; Melvoin, Richard I., New England Outpost: War and Society in Colonial Deerfield (New York: Norton, 1989), 249–75.
34. Lucas, Paul R., Valley of Discord: Church and Society Along the Connecticut River, 1636–1725 (Hanover, N.H.: University Press of New England, 1976), 194–95; Edwards, , Faithful Narrative, 153; Records of the Congregational Church in Suffield (Hartford: Connecticut Historical Society Museum, 1841), 54–57; DSW, 3:374.
35. Winslow, , Jonathan Edwards, 190.
36. Edwards to Eleazar Wheelock, 9 June 1741, and Edwards to Moses Lyman, 31 August 1741, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 89–90, 97–98.
37. Peter Reynolds to Eleazar Wheelock, 6 July 1741, #741406, WP. See also Fea, , “Wheelock's World,” 124–25.
38. Crawford, Michael J., ed., “The Spiritual Travels of Nathan Cole,” WMQ 33 (1976): 92–93; Marston, Cabot, “Memorabilia,” 1740–1945, New England Historic Genealogy Society, Boston, Mass., passim; Diary of the Rev. Daniel Wadsworth, 61–68; Gillett, E. H., ed., “Diary of the Rev. Eleazer Wheelock, D.D., During His Visit to Boston, October 19, Until November 16, 1741,” Historical Magazine and Notes and Queries, 2nd ser., 5 (1869): 237–40; Hopkins, Journal, 35; “Extracts from the Private Journal of the Rev. Ebenezer Parkman, of Westborough, Mass.,” in Tracy, , Great Awakening, 204. Winiarski, , “‘Jornal of a Fue Days at York,’” 46–85. On the broader context of geographical mobility in the Great Awakening, Hall, Timothy D., Contested Boundaries: Itinerancy and the Reshaping of the Colonial American Religious World (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1994); and Breen, T. H. and Timothy, Hall, “Structuring the Provincial Imagination: The Rhetoric and Experience of Social Change in Eighteenth-Century New England,” American Historical Review 103 (1998): 1421–28.
39. Minkema, Kenneth P., ed., “A Great Awakening Conversion: The Relation of Samuel Belcher” WMQ 44 (1987): 121–26; Eleazar Wheelock to the Lebanon North Parish Church, n.d. [11 September 1741], #743900.1, WP. In the King James translation of the Bible with which Belcher would have been most familiar, the full text of Hebrews 10:31 reads “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” For a catalog of extant church admission “relations” from seventeenth-and eighteenth-century New England, see Winiarski, Douglas L., “The Language of Conversion in New England Congregationalism, 1640–1850,” in A People's History of Christianity, Vol. 6: 1650–1900, ed. Amanda, Porterfield (Philadelphia, Penn.: Fortress, forthcoming).
40. On the distinction between “hands” and “hellfire” sermons, see Kimnach, , “General Introduction to the Sermons,” WJE, vol. 10, Sermons and Discourses, 1720–1723, ed. Kimnach, , 168–79.
41. Beales, Ross W. Jr., ed., “The Diary of John Cleaveland, January 15-May 11, 1742,” Essex Institute Historical Collections 107 (1971): 150, 154; Stephen, Nissenbaum, ed., The Great Awakening at Yale College (Belmont, Calif.: Wadsworth, 1972), 35; Joseph Hawley III, “[Meditation] and Closet application,” ca. early 1740s, Joseph Hawley Papers, vol. 1, no. 38, Manuscripts and Archives Division, New York Public Library, Astor, Lennox, and Tilden Foundations. On Hawley's involvement in local ecclesiastical affairs, including the Communion Controversy, see Franklin Bowditch, Dexter, Biographical Sketches of the Graduates of Yale College, 6 vols. (New York: H. Holt, 1885–1912), 1:709–12; Tracy, , Jonathan Edwards, Pastor, 185–86; Nobles, Gregory H., Divisions Throughout the Whole: Politics and Society in Hampshire County, Massachusetts, 1740–1775 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1983), 79–80; Jonathan, Edwards, “Narrative of Communion Controversy,” WJE, vol. 12, Ecclesiastical Writings, ed. Hall, David D. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1994), 518, 522, 540, 606, 616–19; Chamberlain, , “Bad Books and Bad Boys,” 200; and Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 357–69.
42. Seth Youngs to Wheelock, 22 May and 1 July 1741, #741322.1, #741401, WP; Historical Catalogue of the First Church in Hartford, 49.
43. Diary of Daniel Wadsworth, 65–69, 72, 75, 83–85, 90, 93. On Young's activities as a separatist, see Connecticut Archives, Ecclesiastical Papers, ser. 1 (1658–1789), Connecticut State Library, Hartford, 10:29; Seth Youngs to Solomon Paine, 5 and 14 March 1754, James Terry Collection of Separate Church Papers, Connecticut Historical Society Museum, Hartford, 135, 137.
44. Reuben Ely to Wheelock, 4 March 1741, #741204, WP.
45. DSW, 3:369; Jonathan Edwards, Notes on the Case of Bathsheba Kingsley, February 17, 1743, MS II c 1/59, Congregational Library, London; Edwards, “Advice to Mr. and Mrs. Kingsley,” Jonathan Edwards Papers, Andover Newton Theological School, Newton Centre, Mass.; Stephen Williams to Eleazar Wheelock, 16 February 1743, #743166, WP; Ballentine, George H., comp., Journal of the Rev. John Balantine, Minister of Westfield, MA, 1737–1774, 02 15–16, 1743, CD-ROM (Bowie, Md.: Heritage Books, 2002). Ken Minkema graciously shared his transcription of the Congregational Library manuscript with me. For complementary discussions of the Kingsley case, see Brekus, Catherine A., Strangers & Pilgrims: Female Preaching in America, 1740–1845 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1998), 23–26; and Seeman, Erik R., Pious Persuasions: Laity and Clergy in Eighteenth-Century New England (Baltimore, Md.: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999), 169–71.
46. See Appendix (below).
47. DSW, 3:375; Samuel Johnson to Wheelock, 8 and 24 September 1741, #741508, #741524, WP. Both Hathaway and Johnson appear on the list of those who were admitted to full communion in Suffield by Edwards on July 5, 1741: Records of the First Congregational Church of Suffield, 52–53.
48. Williams's diary (3:375) is especially instructive, for he reveals that Edwards was drowned out by the cries of the audience and never completed his most famous sermon performance. When the congregation was finally stilled “after Some time of waiting,” Wheelock took over and prayed briefly, after which the assembled ministers entered in the pews to console the distressed parishioners. Edward Davidson is one of the few scholars who maintains that the Enfield audience was “ready to be moved” and “may even have wanted to be horrendously aroused, for writhings and contortions and shrieks were known all up and down the roads and byways where the ministers were sounding their warnings or picturing the damnation to come if men did not repent and fall on their knees”: Jonathan Edwards, 79. If the portrait of the Enfield congregation presented here and in Davidson's study is accurate, literary critics will need to reconsider all arguments that base the rhetorical brilliance of Sinners on the published version that appeared in print in the fall of 1741 and pay closer attention to the fragmentary nature of his July 8 performance.
49. Studies that juxtapose Edwards's moderation with Davenport's unbridled enthusiasm include Goen, , “Editor's Introduction,” WJE, vol. 4, The Great Awakening, ed. Goen, , 51–52; Tracy, , Jonathan Edwards, Pastor, 139; Clarke, Garrett, Origins of the Shakers: From the Old World to the New World (Baltimore, Md.: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998), 118–26: Grasso, , A Speaking Aristocracy, 98–99: Ann, Tavaes, Fits, Trances, & Visions: Experiencing Religion and Explaining Experience from Wesley to James (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1999, 34; and Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 232–33.
50. Wheelock to the Lebanon North Parish Church, n.d. [11 September 1741]. Based on a notation written on the verso side in a later hand, this undated letter was mistakenly filed among Wheelock's papers for 1743; but a detailed comparison of its contents with events recorded in Stephen Williams's diary (3:376–78) reveals that it was written three days after Edwards's visit to Enfield.
51. DSW, 3:378–87; Jonathan Marsh to Eleazar Wheelock, 18 September 1741, #741518, WP; Timothy Edwards to Wheelock, 26 August 1741, excerpted in Allen, William D., “Memoir of the Rev. Eleazar Wheelock, D.D.,” American Quarterly Register 10 (1837): 12; Longmeadow, Mass., Congregational Church Records, 1741–1923, microfilm (Salt Lake City: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1950).
52. North Hartford Association of Ministers, Records, 1708–1800, Connecticut Conference Archives, United Church of Christ, Hartford, 28–29.
53. Diary of Daniel Wadsworth, 70–71; DSW, 3:386, 398, 404, 406; Marston Cabot to Ebenezer Gay, 11 January 1742, Suffield, Conn., First Congregational Church Papers, 1741–1914, microfilm (Salt Lake City: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1977).
54. Johnson to Wheelock, 8 and 24 September 1741.
55. Records of the First Congregational Church of Suffield, 54–56; Ebenezer Gay, Diary, 1738–94, September 24, 1741, Kent Memorial Library, Suffield, Conn.; Nathaniel Appleton, Certificate of Ebenezer Gay's Admission to Full Communion, October 30, 1741, Suffield, Conn., First Congregational Church Papers.
56. Ebenezer Gay, “Articles of Practice,” n.d., Suffield, Conn., First Congregational Church Papers. On the shifting role of conversionist rhetoric in eighteenth-century church admission narratives, see Winiarski, “The Language of Conversion in New England Congregationalism.” The fullest description of the Breck Affair is in Hall's, David D. “Introduction,” WJE, vol. 12, Ecclesiastical Writings, ed. Hall, , 4–17; see also Charles Edwin, Jones, “The Impolitic Mr. Edwards: The Personal Dimension of the Robert Breck Affair,” NEQ 51 (1978): 64–79.
57. Gay, Diary, August 18, 24–26, September 4, 27, 1741; Stout, , “Preface to the Period,” WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, ed. Stout, and Hatch, with Farley, 34–37, 403, 434–34. On New Light preaching innovations during the Great Awakening, see Stout, Harry S., “Religion, Communications, and the Ideological Origins of the American Revolution,” WMQ 34 (1977): 519–41; and Donald, Weber, Rhetoric and History in Revolutionary New England (New York: Oxford University Press, 1988), 21–27.
58. Gay, Diary, November 15, 1741; DSW, 3:406–7; John Sargeant to Stephen Williams, 24 November 1741, Simon Gratz Papers, American Colonial Clergy, box 24, Historical Society of Pennsylvania. For Gay's sermon notes, see First Congregational Church, Suffield, Conn., Sermons, 1742–81, Connecticut Historical Society Museum.
59. Hopkins, Journal, 12–13; Winiarski, Douglas L., “Souls Filled with Ravishing Transport: Heavenly Visions and the Radical Awakening in New England,” WMQ 61 (2004): 3–46.
60. Gay, Diary, November 23–30, 1741; DSW, 3:406–7. For a complimentary discussion of Gay's ordination troubles, see Wilson, Robert J. III, The Benevolent Deity: Ebenezer Gay and the Rise of Rational Religion in New England, 1696–1787 (Philadelphia: University Pennsylvania Press, 1984), 94–98.
61. DSW, 3:409–11; Gay, Diary, December 14, 23, 1741.
62. Ebenezer Gay [of Hingham, Mass.] to Ebenezer Gay, 6 December 1741, Gratz Papers, American Colonial Clergy, box 22.
63. Ebenezer Gay to Stephen Williams, 30 December 1741, Gratz Papers, American Colonial Clergy, box 22.
64. Ebenezer, Gay [of Hingham], Minister's Insufficiency for Their Important and Difficult Work (Boston: D. Fowle, 1742), 6, 14–20, 24, 27; Wilson, , Benevolent Deity, 95–96.
65. Gay, , Minister's Insufficiency, 30–31.
66. Ibid., 38–39.
67. DSW, 4:3–5, 14.
68. DSW, 4:24, 33; Hampshire County, Mass., Court of General Sessions of the Peace, 1734–45, microfilm (Salt Lake City: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1972), 101; Suffield Church Records, 1742–1836, June 29, 1743, Connecticut Historical Society Museum; Gay, Diary, November 28, 1742.
69. Hezekiah S. Sheldon, comp., “Manuscripts Pertaining to the History of Suffield, Connecticut,” photostats, Connecticut State Library; Gay [of Hingham] to Gay, 6 December 1742. On the institutional challenges facing “outlivers” in eighteenth-century communities, see Bushman, Richard L., From Puritan to Yankee: Character and the Social Order in Connecticut, 1690–1765 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1967), 54–72.
70. Edwards, , Faithful Narrative, 153; Hopkins, Journal, 12–13; DSW, 4:25, 27; Charles, Chauncy, Seasonable Thoughts on the State of Religion in New-England (Boston: Rogers and Fowle, 1743), 4, 11; Sweeney, Kevin M., “Unruly Saints: Religion and Society in the River Towns of Massachusetts, 1700–1750” (B.A. thesis, Williams College, 1972), 133; John Graham, “An Account of the Families and Souls in the West Parish in Suffield,” interleaved in Graham, Diary and Religious Notes, 1746–95, Graham Family Papers, box 1, William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
71. Hopkins, Journal, 44–46.
72. Gay, Diary, December 31, 1741; March 23, April 1, August 22 and 31, September 25–29, 1742; April 5, 1743.
73. Gay, Diary, April 12 and 27, 1743; Gay to Jonathan Edwards, 19 April 1743, Edwards Collection, box 3, folder 240 (I thank Stephen J. Nichols for providing a transcription of the Gay letter originally produced by George S. Claghorn); Suffield Church Records, March 1-April 27 and October 18–24, 1743; Hampshire Association of Ministers, Records, 1731–47, photocopy, Forbes Library, Northampton, Mass., 41–42.
74. Gay, Diary, October 19 and November 7–10, 1743; Hampshire Association Records, 42; Suffield Church Records, October 18-November 8, 1743.
75. Jonathan Judd to [?], 15 February 1742, Edwards Collection, box 5, folder 332; Hopkins, Journal, 42, 44–45; Stephen Williams, Jr., Diary, 1742–44, May 12–14, 1744, Stephen Williams Family Papers, box 1, Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library, New Haven, Conn. After hearing Judd preach in Northampton in June 1742, Hopkins could scarcely contain his jealousy, noting in his diary that he was troubled by the prospect that his former college classmate “should be esteem'd a better preacher than I.”
76. Jonathan Edwards to Stephen, Williams, 1 January 1745, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 152–53; Diary of Daniel Wadsworth, 89; Gillett, E. H., ed., “Diary of Rev. Jacob Eliot,” Historical Magazine, ser. 2, 5 (1869): 34; Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:608–9; Mary Catherine, Foster, “Hampshire County, Massachusetts, 1729–1754: A Covenant Society in Transition” (Ph.D. diss., University of Michigan, 1967), 123–24, 141–42. Munson appears to have withdrawn from West Suffield in May 1745 upon the advice of the North Hartford Association: Jonathan Judd, Diary, March 27 and May 10, 1745, Forbes Library.
77. Jonathan Edwards to the West Suffield Church, 7 January 1746, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 197–98; Fairfield East Association of Ministers, Records, 1736–1813, Connecticut Conference Archives, Hartford, 19; Joseph Bellamy to John Graham, Jr., “My License to Preach Given by the East Association of Fairfield County,” n.d. [November 10, 1741]; Jonathan Sheldon, and others., to Graham, 11 August 1746; Graham to the West Suffield Church, 15 September 1746, Graham Family Papers. Edwards undoubtedly knew more about Graham than he suggested in his letter to the West Suffield church committee, since he had preached for his father in Woodbury as late as March 1742: Hopkins, Journal, 36. Ironically, his liberal colleagues in the Hampshire Association appear to have had no such reservations about the young Yale graduate's candidacy. While they admitted being “Intire Strangers to him” and claimed to have “Little knowledge” of Graham's orthodoxy, the anti-revival faction—including staunch Old Lights like Samuel Hopkins of West Springfield—could “See no Reason” why West Suffield “may not proceed in his Settlement.” By the time of his ordination in October 1746, Graham had proven his “Orthodoxy” to the satisfaction of his peers, and he was received by a coalition of ministers that included revival critics Hopkins, Robert Breck, John Ballentine, and Ebenezer Gay, as well as evangelical moderates Peter Reynolds and Stephen Williams. He was admitted to the Hampshire Association a year later. Ultimately, Graham proved to be a valuable colleague, and he presided over the West Suffield church for more than four decades. On Graham's complicated settlement negotiations, see, in addition to the above, Hampshire Association Records, 49; Stephen Williams to West Suffield Church, n.d. [ca. 1746], Letters of Prominent Clergymen, Manuscripts and Archives Division, New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox, and Tilden Foundatins; as well as Graham to the West Suffield Church, 13 March 1746; Samuel Hopkins, “A Unanimous Vote of the Ministers of the lower part of Hampshire County,” July 16, 1746; and Peter Reynolds, “The Ordination Council of John Graham,” October 22, 1746, all of which may be found among the Graham Family Papers.
78. Edwards to Hathaway, 2 June 1741, and Edwards to Lyman, 31 August, 1741, 94, 97–98. For a detailed chronology of Edwards's “quarrel with Stoddardeanism,” see Hall, , “Introduction,” WJE, vol. 12, Ecclesiastical Writings, ed. Hall, , 51–62. Minkema, Kenneth P. explores Edwards's complex antislavery position in “Jonathan Edwards on Slavery and the Slave Trade,” WMQ 54 (1997): 823–34; and Minkema, , “Jonathan Edwards's Defense of Slavery,” Massachusetts Historical Review 4 (2002): 23–59.
79. WJE, vol. 13, The “Miscellanies,” a-500, ed. Schafer, Thomas A. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1994), 135; WJE, vol. 20, The “Miscellanies,” 833–1152, ed. Amy Plantinga, Pauw (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2002), 146, 156–58, 161, 163, 167–89. For an extended discussion of this issue, see Pauw, , “Editor's Introduction,” WJE, vol. 20, The “Miscellanies,” 833–1152, ed. Pauw, , 4–5, 17–24.
80. See, for example, the wide-ranging selection of sermons from this period in WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, ed. Stout, and Hatch, with Farley, passim.
81. Edwards to Prince, 12 December 1743, 117.
82. Ibid., 117–18.
83. Edwards to Lyman, 31 August 1741, 97; Edwards, , Distinguishing Marks, 228–48; Edwards, , Some Thoughts Concerning the Present Revival of Religion in New-England (Boston, 1742), reprinted in WJE, vol. 4, The Great Awakening, ed. Goen, , 409–95.
84. WJE, vol. 22, Sermons and Discourses, 1739–1742, ed. Stout, and Hatch, , 519–35; Edwards, , Miscellany 1058, WJE, vol. 20, The “Miscellanies”: 833–1152, ed. Pauw, , 395; Edwards, “Treatise on Grace,” ca. 1739–43, and “Directions for Judging of Persons' Experience,” ca. 1742, WJE, vol. 22, Writings on the Trinity, Grace, and Faith, ed. Sang Hyun, Lee (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2003), 149–97, 520–24; Hampshire Association Records, 38; Peter Reynolds, draft of Northampton Resolves, May 25, 1742, Miscellaneous Collection, Clements, William L. Library; A Copy of the Resolves of a Council of Churches, Met at Northampton (Boston: S. Kneeland and T. Green, 1742); WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 105–42.
85. Edwards to Prince, 12 December 1743, 120–21.
86. Ibid.; Hopkins, Journal, 26–27; DSW, 4:6–9. Sarah's account of Buell's visit has been published in Dwight, , Life of President Edwards, 1:171–86. For discussions of her involvement in the 1742 Northampton revival, see Amanda, Porterfield, Feminine Spirituality in America: From Sarah Edwards to Martha Graham (Philadelphia, Perm.: Temple University Press, 1980), 39–48; Julie, Ellison, “The Sociology of ‘Holy Indifference’: Sarah Edwards' Narrative,” American Literature 56 (1984): 479–95; Gustafson, Sandra M., Eloquence Is Power: Oratory & Performance in Early America (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2000), 67–72; and Marsden, , Jonathan Edwards, 239–52.
87. Edwards to Prince, 12 December 1743, 121.
88. Ibid., 120–21, 125–26.
89. On the creation of a transatlantic evangelical reading community through published revival narratives, see Susan, O'Brien, “A Transatlantic Community of Saints: The Great Awakening and the First Evangelical Network, 1735–1755,” American Historical Review 91 (1986): 811–32; Crawford, Michael J., Seasons of Grace: Colonial New England's Revival Tradition in Its British Context (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991); and, especially, Frank, Lambert, Inventing the “Great Awakening” (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1999).
90. Suffield Church Records, November 15, 1747-February 27, 1754; “Results of a Council at Suffield Regarding Position of Women in Churches,” December 1754, Canterbury, Conn., Separate Church Papers, Connecticut State Library; Ebenezer Gay to Willard Hall, 30 June 1768, Kent Memorial Library; James Terry Collection, 58, 106, 127. On the legacy of radical religious dissent in Suffield and surrounding communities in Hampshire County, see Foster, , “Hampshire County,” 135–53; Nobles, , Divisions Throughout the Whole, 75–106; and Peterson, Mark A., The Price of Redemption: The Spiritual Economy of Puritan New England (Stanford Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1997), 220–24.
91. Ballentine, , comp., Journal of the Rev. John Ballantine, 09 29, 1762; 09 30, 1763; 10 14, 1766; 10 18, 11 7–8, 12 6, 1768; 01 20, 1769; Connecticut Archives, Ecclesiastical Papers, 10:39, 52; 15:233–40; James Terry Collection, 161.
92. There are minor discrepancies between these figures and the Suffield church records. Although the author of the Savage manuscript revised the total number of new communicants in the second extract (see below), tine official church records listed a total of ninety-seven new communicants. Only ten individuals received baptism. Eunice Granger may have owned the covenant instead of joining in full membership because she was under suspicion for sexual indiscretion. On March 18, 1742, Granger appeared before the Hampshire County Court and “Confessed … That She had been Guilty of the Crime of Fornication”: see Records of the Congregational Church in Suffield, 52–54, 67, 75; Hampshire County, Court of General Sessions of the Peace, 83.
93. Born in West Springfield, John Woodbridge (1702–83) graduated from Yale College in 1726 and served as minister at Poquonnoc, a small parish in the northwest corner of Windsor, until 1737. He preached on supply for the next five years while living in Suffield, the birthplace of his wife, Tryphena Ruggles. In the spring of 1742, he was ordained at South Hadley, where he would reside until his death four decades later: Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:344.
94. Suffield native Benjamin Pomeroy (1704–84) was widely recognized as one of the most powerful itinerant preachers of his day. Ordained at Hebron, Conn., following his graduation from Yale in 1733, Pomeroy traveled extensively during the Great Awakening and was twice arrested for violating the colony's anti-itinerancy law. He married Wheelock's sister and later served as a chaplain in the Seven Years' War: Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:485–88.
95. Few figures played a more prominent role in sparking the revivals of the 1740s than the itinerant preacher and zealous New Light correspondent Eleazar Wheelock (1711–99). Ordained at the “Crank” parish of Lebanon (now Columbia), Conn., in 1734, he presided over a powerful revival a year later. Like fellow radical New Lights Pomeroy (his close friend and colleague) and James Davenport (his brother-in-law), Wheelock traveled widely during the revivals, preaching from Boston to coastal Connecticut. By the mid-1740s, he had turned his attention to Native American missionary causes and would later found Dartmouth College in 1769. For biographical information and discussions of his role in the Awakening, see Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:493–99; James Dow, McCallum, Eleazar Wheelock (New York: Arno, 1969); David, M'Clure and Elijah, Parish, Memoirs of the Rev. Eleazar Wheelock (New York: Amo, 1972); and Fea, , “Wheelock's World,” 99–144.
96. Jedidiah Mills (1697–1776) graduated from Yale in 1722 and became an aggressive itinerant preacher during the revivals of the 1740s. He was the pastor of Ripton (now Huntington), Conn., for more than five decades (Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:262–63).
97. Joseph Bellamy (1719–90) emerged as zealous proponent of New Light revival innovations during the early phases of the Great Awakening; but like Edwards, his close friend and mentor, Bellamy would later reject the implications of radical evangelicalism. Graduating from Yale in 1735, he served as the first minister of Bethlehem, Conn., for five decades. On Bellamy's early radicalism, see Mark, Valeri, Law & Providence in Joseph Bellamy's New England: The Origins of the New Divinity in Revolutionary America, ed. Stout, Harry S. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994), 13–33, 42–48; see also Dexter, , Biographical Sketches, 1:523–29; and Tryon Edwards, “Memorial,” in Bellamy, , The Works of the Rev. Joseph Bellamy, 3 vols. (New York: Stephen Dodge, 1811–12).
98. “Scantic,” that is, East Windsor (see the following note).
99. Edwards had urged Wheelock and Pomeroy to preach in his father's parish in a letter dated 9 June 1741, WJE, vol. 16, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. Claghorn, , 89–90.
1 I would like to thank Philip Gura, Thomas Kidd, Kenneth Minkema, Stephen Stein, and the members of FLEA, the Fall Line Early Americanists Reading group (Terri Halperin, Woody Holton, Edward Larkin, Mark McGarvie, Philip Schwarz, Brent Tarter, Mark Valeri, and Marion Winship) for their helpful comments on preliminary drafts of this essay. Manuscript quotations follow the expanded method of transcription and appear by permission of the Beinecke Rare Books and Manuscripts Library, Yale University, New Haven, Conn.; Connecticut Conference Archives, United Church of Christ, Hartford; Connecticut Historical Society Museum, Hartford; Connecticut State Library, Hartford; Dartmouth College Library, Hanover, N.H.; Forbes Library, Northampton, Mass.; Franklin Trask Library, Andover Newton Theological School, Newton Centre, Mass.; Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; Kent Memorial Library, Suffield, Conn.; Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library; Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston; New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston; New York Public Library, New York; Storrs Public Library, Longmeadow, Mass.; and William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
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