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friend also put the proceedings of the Rye into the public papers, and E enquired, if the permission of such practices was consistent with the discipline of so respectable a regiment.' pp. 27–28.
The ill treatment which he suffered, excited considerable Interest, and was the occasion of introducing bim to the notice of 1
Lord and Lady Robert Manners, who exerted their influence, although for a considerable time ineffectually, to procure his discharge. The letter which Lady Manners sent him at this period, will not fail to interest the reader by the simplicity, the Christian condescension, and the admirable piety, by which it is characterized.
The circumstances which eventually led to his discharge, after all the efforts of his friends had proved abortive, furnish a = striking instance of the overruled disposal of events the most
unpromising, by that All-seeing Providence who is his people's 1 help and shield. They display at the same time the unshaken
firmness and independence of mind, which Mr. Morris preserved e throughout the trying predicament in which he was placed.
• In the beginning of the year 1775, I was with a detachment of the troops on duty at the Horse Guards; here I received an invitation from Lady Manners, to visit them at Grosvenor Square, the first opportunity which occurred. My duty at this time was that of orderly man at St. James's Palace; and as there were two more in the same situation, we agreed among ourselves to wait successively. During one of these intervals from duty, I waited on Lord and Lady Manners ; and returning from Grosvenor Square, I met the captain of my troop in the street, who immediately ordered a roll-call, with the pretence of ascertaining who was absent, though he had passed me within half an hour. On my return to the garrison I was ordered into confine. ment by one of the officers; and the next day I was sent with a strong guard to head quarters at Cranford Bridge. One of my friends in the regiment, understanding that they intended to punish me, advised me to write to some friend in London immediately. I wrote to Lord R. Manners, who came in his carriage the same evening, and desired the officer to place the whole of the blame to his account, as he had sent for me to Grosvenor Square; but the reply was, that they were determined to try me by a court martial. He then requested them to inform him when and where the court martial would be held, as he intended to be present.
• I was kept in confinement for twelve days after this, and heard not a word farther on the subject. Early in the morning of the thirteenth day, I received orders 'to proceed to the Bush Inn at Staines, there to be tried by a court martial; to which place the officers ordered me to be marched on foot, with my hands cuffed. When I arrived I found the court assembled ; and after the accusation had been laid by the captain, I was asked if I had any one to speak in my behalf. I told them í had not, not being aware that Lord Robert had intended to be there, to whom they took care to send the information too late. I was then told that I had liberty to speak for
sayself. I began by saying, that the corporal of the guard had told us that if one of the three kept constantly in waiting, the others might be absent for an hour or two at a time. The chairman said, “and “ what then?” I answered, that if he would take down, word for word, what I had already said, I would tell them what then: for, finding that they intended to be severe with me, I determined to keep them strictly to the rules of the martial law. He then enquired, where were the persons who relieved guard with me; but as they had not been ordered on the trial, post-horses were immediately sent to head quarters to bring the corporal into court. When they had asked him a few questions, which proved the truth of what I had stated, they found it necessary to have the man who relieved guard with me at St. James's Palace, before they could go on with the trial; posthorses were immediately ordered to fetch him. One of the officers, being apparently ashamed of the proceedings, and of the disputes among themselves, then shut the door: when another rose up and opened it, knowing that it was contrary to martial law to have the door closed. Just as the post-horses were going for the other witness, one of the officers informed the court that the man could not be in time, for they could not proceed with the trial, legally, after two o'clock. I was then called upon to give the remainder of my evidence against myself; after which I was remanded to head quarters, with orders not to put the handcuffs on again.
? • The next morning the troop was ordered to Lewishain in Kent, and I with thein; and as nothing more was said to me on the subject, I concluded that the affair was closed. One of my comrades think. ing the same, as we were walking together in the evening, congratuJated me that all respecting the court martial was now over. The next morning, however, proved that we were mistaken ; for about five o'clock, orders were given to march me, as a prisoner, from West End into Lewisham; when two of my friends in the same troop came, to me very much agitated, and enquired if I knew what was going forward ; upon replying in the negative, they informed me that they were getting ready to picket me. I requested them not to alarm themselves, for I was confident they would not do it. Some time after this, during the day, the troops were marched into a meadow, and formed into a circle, with myself in the midst. The sentence of the court martial was then read to me; which was, that I should be severely picketted. Every thing being ready, I was called up by the quarter-master to receive the punishment; but I neither moved nor spoke. Perceiving this, he called out to the guard to bring me up; and they, in obedience to his orders, offering to seize me for that purpose, I declared I would not be picketted. The quarter-master said, “ O, you will not be punished then, will you ?" To which I replied, that I objected to the proceedings of the court martial as unjust, and therefore appealed to a general court martial. The officers appeared thunder-struck at my appeal : and the adjutant said, in a very serious tone of voice, “ Morris, as sure as you are a living « man, you are wrong ;" and added, " if you will go through the form .“ of the punishment, upon my word and honour you shall not be hurt.”. To this I made no answer : but several of the men said, that if it
could be allowed, they would as my substitute receive the punishment for me. No reply was niade to the offer ; but I was marched back again to my quarters, where I had not been more than an hour, when another guard arrived to take me to Greenwich ; there I was confined in a room at Salutation stairs, with a sentinel over me day and night. From the patience and composure which I had inanifested, the clerk of the troop said, “ he should like to have seen me on the * picket, for he thought I expected that the Lord would send one of « his angels to deliver me.”
• I remained in this confinement four days without hearing any more of the matter, when a letter was brought me, by a servant of Lord R. Manners, to enquire how I was, and when they intended to bring me to a general court martial, requesting me to give him the earliest information on the subject. I returned for answer, that he might be
assured they would not suffer me to know any thing about it, but 1. that he might gain information by an application to the Judge Ad.
vocate. I waited in this situation about five days longer, when I received a message, that Lord R. Manners was waiting in his carriage, at the end of the lane. I accordingly went to his carriage, the sentinel accompanying me, in which I had a long conversation with his lordship. Among other things he asked me if any person had advised me to ap. peal to a general court martial. I told him that no person had given me advice on the subject; but I appealed because I thought they had acted very wrong towards me. He asked me, if I could say that I was sorry to give the officers unnecessary trouble, as he thought it would be acting like a Christian to make the acknowledgment. I answered, that I was sorry to give any gentleman trouble on my account; I only wished to defend myself against oppression. Four days after this, the corporal of the guard came to me, and informed me that I was set at liberty from my confinement, and was ordered to wait on the commanding officer at Lewisham. When I saw him, I asked if he knew that I was set at liberty; he said yes; and told me farthet, to go and settle every thing with the regiment, for I was going to be discharged. Strict orders were given that my pay, and all money lent to the men, with every other demand on the regiment, should be paid up to that day.
• It is natural to suppose, that in the combination of trying circumstances which attended me, I must have had considerable anxiety, but, trusting to the justice of my cause, and to that God who has promised, “ As thy day is, so shall thy strength be,” and “ No weapon it that is formed against thee shall prosper," my confidence in his promise never failed, but continued my support and consolation through the whole. The next day I received my discharge, and gave a receipt in full of all demands on the regimenti' pp. 38-44 :
It was the expectation of his noble patrons, that Mr. Morris would enter the Church, but reluctant as he felt to act in opposition to the wishes of those from whom he had received such distinguished favours, he could not reconcile himself to the terms
of conformity." ' ' Most of the articles, prayers, and creeds of the Established Church
I could,' he says, ' at that time have agreed to, but could by no means Teconcile myself to the administration of baptism according to the prescribed order of the Prayer-book, by which I should be bound to return God thanks, that the infant so baptized was regenerated with the Holy Spirit of God, received for his own child by adoption, and incorporated into his holy church; when, in truth, it was to be the business of my ministry to shew that every person was in the gall of bitterness and bond of iniquity, unless his understanding was enlightened, and his heart renewed, by the regenerating grace of the Holy Spirit.
Lord and Lady Manners, however, much to their honour, although disappointed at his decision, continued to extend to him their friendship. Mr. Morris soon after joined the Baptist denomination, which has been indebted to the Baptismal ritual of the Church of England for many similar accessions In 1776, he was ordained to the pastoral office at Woodrow, near Amer-' sham, in Buckinghamshire, and subsequently removed to Amersham, where he continued till his death. Here, as the means of
support which his little flock were able to afford him was very slender,' he carried on an exteusive business.
• In 1789, about fourteen years after his coming to Amersham, he conceived the project of establishing a cotton manufactory in the town. With this view he entered into partnership with Messrs. John and Tho- } mas Hailey, and soon began building. By his own personal labour and superintendence, he fitted up all the apparatus of machinery necessary for spinning, weaving, and bleaching. In all manner of brass and iron work he was remarkably ingenious and clever, though quite self-taugbt. He constructed many philosophical machines, some of which he sold, and others kept for his own use; which he not only put together, as a watch-maker does the machinery of a time-piece, but he actually wrought a great part of the brass and iron work with his own hands. p. 58.
He also applied himself to land-surveying and architecture with considerable success. The meeting-house of Mr. Douglas at Reading, as well as that at Amersham, together with some large breweries, manufactories, and other buildings at the latter place, were erected by Mr. Morris, on his own plan. Such a man could not fail to be highly respected. We are accordingly informed, that his influence, in the neighbourhood in which he lived, was considerable among all parties. He closed a long life of usefulness, July 28th, 1817, in the 71st year of his age. A very high testiinony to his Christian character, is given in the present volume, by one of his brother ministers, who preached bis funeral sermon. .
Mr. Godwin deserves the thanks of the religious public, for the very interesting compilation which he has furnished, as well as for the cheap form in which it is given, by which means it will, we hope, obtain an extensive circulation. The Editor modestly disclaims any pretensions to literary excellence, but the work stands in no need of an apology.
in the prery high testimo28th, 1817, amics
THESIS, or in rep by strangere
Mr. Birkbe collection; hom they
Art. VI. Letters from Illinois. By Morris Birkbeck, Author of
“ Notes on a Journey through France," and of “ Notes on a “ Journey in America,” &c. 8vo. pp. vii. 114. Price 58. 1818. THESE Letters were originally written either to intimate
friends, or in reply to applications for advice or information made to the Author, by strangers who were desirous of trying as a cure for discontent, the remedy of emigration, wbich he represents as having, in his own case, succeeded to admiration. Mr. Birkbeck has been induced to publish them, “in the hope • that, as a collection, they may be useful to others, as well as to • the individuals to whom they were severally addressed.'
To any person seriously contemplating an exile from the 6 land of his fathers,' the minutely specific information contained in these Letters, will be invaluable. To general readers they may appear rather barren of interest, as they offer little to gratify curiosity, in addition to the details given in the Author's “ Notes” on his journey. - The date of the latest of these letters, carries down the history
of the infant colony to-we were going to say, Lady Day ; but so Popish a designation has doubtless no place in the Illinois calendar; neither would Quarter-day sound less obsolete in the ears of these independent Back-woods' nen. Think of a • country,' exclaims Citizen Birkbeck, 'without excisemen, or • assessors, or collectors, or receivers-general, or informers • or paupers! The date of the latest Letter, is, March 26th ult. at which period, the colony was beginning to assume, as the spring advanced, " a most encouraging aspect. The Author must be allowed to give his own account of affairs,
• Our English friends are gathering round us ; and so far from being solitary, and doleful, and desolate in this remote region, you must reverse all this to form any notion of our condition,
• The toil and the difficulty, and even the dangers, attending the removal of a family from the hills of Surrey to the prairies of Illinois are considerable : and the responsibility is felt, at every step, a load upon the spirits of a father, for which his honest intentions are not at all times a sufficient counterpoise. "To have passed through all this harmless, and even triumphantly, to have secured a retreat for ourselves, and then, turning our backs upon care and anxiety, to be employed in smoothing the way, and preparing a happy resting place for other weary pilgrims, is an enjoyment which I did not cala culate upon when we quitted our old home.
a" A lodge in some vast wilderness" was the exchange we contemplated ; fortifying our minds against the privations we were to experience, by a comparison with the evils we hoped to retire from : and now, instead of burying ourselves in a boundless forest, among wild animals, human and brute, we are taking possession of a cheerful abode, to be surrounded by well informed and prosperous neighbours. How sincerely do I wish you and yours could be