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it is clear to me, that both the English and Indians had a great esteem for Peter Folger; who was grandfather to the famous Benjamin Franklin of Philadelphia, lately deceased. His mother was the daughter of Peter Folger, who lived within forty rods of the spot where I was born. And from what I have heard, the whole of North America prided itself as much in Benjamin Franklin, as the people of Nantucket did, in his grandfather. I conclude therefore, that he inherited a part of his noble publick spirit from his grandfather, Peter Folger.

I hope the errours of the above will be excused, as I am now in my seventy-ninth year, and according to the course of nature, am not so capable of setting matters in a clear light as in my younger days. ZACCHEUS MACY.

Nantucket, 15th of 5th month, 1792.

BIRTHS, MARRIAGES, and DEATHS, in the island of NANTUCKET, communicated by the Rev. Mr. SHAW.

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N. B. Of the deaths, 11 were caused by pulmonary consumption, and 10 by hectical decay. 10 were males, and 11 females.

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N. B. Of the deaths, 13 were caused by pulmonary consumption, & by hectical decay.

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N. B. Of the deaths, 12 were by pulmonary consumption. 11 by hectical decay. 9 by convulsions.

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N. B. Of the deaths, 6 were by pulmonary consumption. 14 by hec

tical decay. 12 by convulsions.


HALE FISHERY originated at Nantucket in the year 1690, in

W boats from the shore.

1715. 6 sloops, 38 tons burden, obtained about 600 barrels of oil, and 11,000 bone



25 sail, from 38 to 50 tons, obtained annually about
3,700 barrels, at £7 per ton



60 sail, from 50 to 75 tons, obtained 11,250 barrels
at £14


1756. 1768.

80 sail, 75 tons, obtained 12,000 barrels at £18
70 sail, 75 tons, obtained 10,500 barrels at £18
N. B. Lost ten sail, taken by the French, and foun-




120 sail, from 75 to 110 tons, obtained 18,000 bar-
rels at £40

100,000 L. M.

From 1772 to 1775.

150 sail, from 90 to 180 tons, upon the coast of
Guinea, Brazil, and the West Indies, obtained annu-
ally 30,000 barrels, which sold in the London mar-
ket at £44 to £45 sterling


N B. 2,200 seamen employed in the fishery, and 220 Sterling. in the London trade.

Peace of 7 sail to Brazil from 100 to 150 tons obtained 2,100


5 to the coast of Guinea


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N. B. The price fell by the exaction of a duty in Lon

don of £18 38. sterling, per ton.

1785. Now at sea.

8 sail to Brazil.

2 to the coast of Guinea.

5 to the West Indies.

Before the war there were annually manufactured in Nantucket 380 tons of spermaceti candles.*

* This state of the whale fishery in Nantucket, was written in the year 1785.

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Dear Sir,

Old Jewry, (London,) October 29, 1785.

OUGHT long ago to have returned thanks for your kind attention to my last letter, by your friendly and obliging answer of the 5th July last, but I was then out upon a long tour into Scotland, Cumberland, Westmoreland, &c. for two months, and have been very much engaged since that time.

The approbation you have been pleased to express of my tract on the election of bishops gives me particular satisfaction; and as you have thought proper to favour me with some information on that subject, it becomes my duty to enlarge upon it, and to communicate my sentiments without reserve. Long before this time you will probably have heard of a letter which I wrote to a friend in America, expressing my doubts concerning the validity of Dr. Seabury's consecration by the nonjuring bishops in Scotland: a copy of which letter was taken (as I am informed by the clergyman to whom it was sent) in order to be laid before the convention of the Episcopal clergy of three American provinces, intended to be held at Philadelphia, in the last month: the result of which I earnestly wish to hear. You have intimated a probability that the people of America in a certain case, "may think it right to elect;" but the Episcopal clergy of America will, of course, be aware that a mere election of a presbyter to the office of a bishop, will not be sufficient to constitute the Episcopal dignity (nor to confer the kind of authority that is requisite for those who preside, according to the apostolick constitution, in the churches of Christ) without the outward form of laying on hands by other bishops, after solemn prayer for the inspiration of the holy spirit to assist and guide the elected person in the execution of such a solemn charge and trust in the church of Christ, as raust render him most awfully responsible for his whole conduct before God and man!

I was anxious that this, truly christian and scriptural rite of laying on hands should be communicated to the Episcopal church of America, by a channel of continuation from the apostolick times that should be as unexceptionable as possible; and therefore I wished that the first American bishops might be consecrated by our English bishops, whose predecessors were particularly instrumental in promoting the reformation from Popery (several of them having sealed their testimony with their blood) and whose doctrine in general has ever since been limited by the test of holy scripture. The authority of the bishops of Scotland, who were ejected in the reign of King William and Queen Mary, was also equally unexceptionable at that time, as I have elsewhere declared, and though they were inhumanly persecuted during the remainder of that reign, and for a few years in the beginning of Queen Anne's reign, yet they had it in their power, soon afterwards (in the 10th year of that reign) to have continued an unquestionable Episcopal church,

though not an established one; for their meetings were tolerated, at least, and their "letters of orders," acknowledged and authorized by an express act of parliament in 1711 [which I have reason to believe was principally promoted by the interest and continued endeavours (for several preceding years) of my own grandfather*] on condition that they should take the oaths to the Queen, the Princess Sophia, and all the royal family. But unhappily, through the unreasonable attachment of many of them (or of their successors) to the excluded Popish family, these terms were not generally complied with; whereby they assumed the new character of Nonjurors and Jacobites, professing attachment to a foreign authority that was inimical to the established government : which unhappy disposition afforded a pretence afterwards to the enemies of the Episcopal church of Scotland to obtain a repeal of that just act, and to entirely abolish the reasonable toleration it afforded to the continuance of the Episcopal church of Scotland. (See acts xix. and xxvi. K. Geo. II. in 1746 and 1748) whereby no "letters of orders" were allowed, but those of English or Irish bishops, after 29th September, 1748 and this extreme severity was exerted, without making the least reserve for discriminating in favour of such Scottish bishops, or Episcopal pastors, who might have qualified themselves for toleration agreeable to the former acts, and therefore the acts of repeal were too plainly acts of unjustifiable violence, which nothing but the critical time in which they were passed (viz. during the extreme dejection of the Jacobite party by the happy suppression of the late rebellion in the heart of the kingdom) would have prompted the opposite party in power to adopt; nothing but an opportunity of irresistible power could have emboldened them to proceed to such cruel extremities under the external form of law! But however cruel and unjust this repeal of a mere toleration may be deemed towards the more moderate part of the bishops and Episcopal pastors of Scotland, yet, it is to be feared, that by far the greatest part of them had not sufficient moderation to induce their submission to "the powers that be," and to profess a due christian resolution to live quietly under the established government: for it appears that the professed Nonjurors were driven by the spirit of party to very unjustifiable lengths; and their attachment to the excluded family, induced them (as I have been informed) to receive their Congés d'Elire from the Pretender: a practice highly derogatory to the rights of the christian church, and therefore justly exceptionable even under a protestant prince, but utterly inexcusable, when the submission was voluntary to a Popish descendant of the justly excluded family, who had not even a shadow of power or authority to enforce that undue royal interference in episcopal elections!

But this voluntary submission to the Congé d'Elire is not my only objection to the nonjuring bishops of Scotland. Their high tory notions of passive obedience, and indefeasible hereditary right, under the

* His grandfather was Archbishop of York.

influence of a foreign Popish prince, have led them to adopt (as I have been informed) some usages which are very exceptionable and apparently Popish For, it is said, that they not only mix water with the wine in the commemoration of the Lord's supper (which is without authority of the holy scripture, howsoever the tradition, which they allege, of primitive times, may seem to favour it) but they also adulterate even the water in the other sacrament of baptism (contrary both to primitive tradition and the scriptures) with a mixture of chrism or oil, salt, &c. when pure water alone is commanded! And so dangerous it is to be wise above what is written, that prayers for the dead, and extreme unction have also been admitted (it seems) as usages among them!

These are my reasons for wishing, that the first American bishops may receive their consecration rather from our English bishops, than from the nonjurors of Scotland. And I have good authority to say, that several of the English bishops (and I have not the least reason to suspect that any of the rest entertain different sentiments on this point) are very desirous to promote the episcopal church of Christ in America or elsewhere upon true christian principles, without any idea of acquiring the least ascendancy thereby, which might be derogatory to the independence of free national churches: and though they are, at present, so unhappily bound up by the act of uniformity, that they cannot dispense with the oaths of allegiance and supremacy, yet I am assured on the best authority, that they will endeavour to obtain a due sanction or power to do so (even if an express act of parliament should be thought necessary to effect it) whenever a proper requisition shall be made to consecrate a bishop, or bishops, for America, provided the elected persons sent from thence, bring with them the necessary testimonials of their ecclesiastical qualifications, morality, election, &c. (for the scriptural rubrick is to lay hands suddenly on no man) and I have ample reason to think that all due attention will be paid to so just a demand.

Be pleased to excuse the trouble I give you in perusing so long a letter, for it was not in my power to express all that I wished to communicate on this important subject in fewer words.

I remain, with true respect and esteem,

Dear Sir,

Your obliged humble servant,

His Excellency Benjamin Franklin, Esq.


HE observes that he had written before to a friend in America upon this subject. That friend was President Manning, of Providence. He wrote to him upon it in the winter before, when he sent a present of books to Providence college; and a copy of the answer thereto is before me, dated Providence, July 26, 1785, which mentions, that said

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