Monday, August 26, 2013


There other statements concerning Edward Woodman's outburst about
Reverend Thomas Parker and also the exchange of words with my ancestor
William Gerrish. Again, several of my ancestors were involved, and I've
used red on their names:

The following depositions were also taken and put on file:

'The deposition of James Ordway, Abraham Merrill, and John Bayley.'

'These deponents say that when Mr. Woodman saith that Mr. Parker was the occasion of these contentions by his apostacy and declension (he added) from the principles that you have preached and practised, and also proved by the word of God, that men's consciences were engaged in it that they cannot depart from it unto this day.'

'Sworn in court, the thirtieth of March, 1669.' 'Richard Bartlet, James Ordway, and John Emery.'

'We testify that Mr. Parker in a public meeting said that for the time to come I am resolved nothing shall be brought into the church, but it shall be brought first to me, and if I approve of it, it shall be brought in, if I do not approve it, it shall not be brought in.'

Sworn as above.

'The depositions of John Emery, senior, John Emery, junior, Abraham Merrill, and John Bayley.'

'These deponents say that as Mr. Woodman was speaking in the meeting-, March first, 1669, captain Gerrish stood up and interrupted him, mentioning his gray hairs. Mr. Woodman said, captain Gerrish, my gray hairs will stand in any place where your bald head will stand.'

Sworn as above.

'The deposition of William Titcomb, John Emery, Robert Coker and Thomas Browne.'

'These deponents say that upon the Lord's day, the twenty-first of March, 1669, after the exercise was ended, Mr. Parker put this to the members.That those that are for the discontinuance of my cousin Woodbridge in the way of preaching, as formerly he hath done until farther order be taken, let them speak.

'Afterwards Mr. Parker expressed thus, those that are for the continuance of my cousin Woodbridge in the way of preaching as formerly he hath done let them express themselves by their silence.'

Sworn, and so forth -
 A Sketch of the History of Newbury, Newburyport, and West Newbury, from 1635 
to 1845
,  by Joshua Coffin & Joseph Bartlett  (Sameul G Drake, Boston, 1845) p74

I get a kick out of that "and so forth". Edward Woodman sent a statement to the court to refute the accusations but it didn't help his case.  

 'March 30th, 1669. Having heard the complaint presented to this court against Mr. Edward Woodman we do judge some passages relating to Mr. Parker and Mr. Woodman to be false and scandalous, and that concerning captain Gerrish reproachful and provoking, and the whole greatly offensive, and have therefore ordered that the said Mr. Woodman shall be seriously and solemnly admonished and enjoined to make a publique confession at the next publique town and church meeting at Newbury of his sinful expressions and just offence that he hath given, or else to pay five pounds costs and fees.
'I dissent from this sentence, Samuel Symonds.
'And I dissent, William Hathorne.-ibid pp74-75

At this point it would seem that the issue was settled, but those two dissenting votes would be the basis for the continued division of the Newbury church.

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