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future time. I returned from my journeying to attend the meeting of the National Local Preachers' Association. After a long and tedious journey of six days I reached Washington, about thirty-six miles south of Baltimore, the latter city being all astir with the 150th celebration of its foundation. It was between nine and ten o'clock p.m. when we reached Washington, and many stayed there all night, fearing there would be small chance of accommodation at Baltimore. I, however, went on, arriving at half-past ten, very weary with my journey. I went to several hotels, but found all full, and at last was glad to share with six others in separate beds, made up in barrack-room style.
The annual gathering of the National Local Preachers' Association had been looked forward to with considerable interest, especially from the fact that it was to be at Baltimore, where open hearts and doors would be ready to welcome all comers. This I fully realised on reaching the house of my kind host, Francis W. Heath, Esq., Baltimore. Methodists know how to entertain strangers, taking them to their homes and providing for them royally; and · Baltimore may be considered the hotbed of Methodism.
Another point of interest was the fact that the Convention was to be at the same time as the city celebration ; though some feared ours would suffer, but it did not. No one would think Baltimore 150 years old, from its present appearance.
It looks as fresh as youth, and as blooming For a week the enthusiasm and commotion scarcely ceased day or night. The decorations were magnificent; many of the designs most beautiful and unique, and fireworks each night; torchlight processions, large buildings literally covered with flags, our own gathering being happy and prosperous, and much love shown by the brethren. The Rev. Isaac P. Cook, the well-known and greatly beloved Local Preacher, the honoured head for so many years of Baltimore City Local Preachers' Association, was elected, for the present year, President of the Local Preachers' Association, which has honoured itself by placing at its head one of the foremost men of Baltimore, so thoroughly qualified for the duties of the presidency. Personally, I have been greatly favoured with his attentions and friendship, as with many others during my stay here. I enclose a copy of a letter from Mr. Cook to me:
as a rose.
“ To Rev. W. Jameson, of London.
“My respected Brother,-It affords me much pleasure to assure you that your visit and valuable services during the Twenty-third Annual Meeting of the National Local Preachers' Association of the Methodist Episcopal Church of the United States, have been highly appreciated by our American brethren. The kind reception given to our esteemed brother Rev. J. Field, as our delegate to your Association, has more closely united the Methodist Local Preachers together in America and Europe.
It has been my honour to have been considered in your company, and I have been strongly impressed by your marked intelligence and ardent devotion to Methodism. I leave with
my esteem and regards, before bidding you a final farewell until we meet in heaven.
“ Yours in bonds,
“ I. P. Cook.”
The introduction of Methodism into the American Colonies is attributed by Church authorities to two Wesleyan Local Preachers from Ireland; but where it commenced, or in what place, are open questions. President Isaac P. Cook, who has made American Methodism a study, in an address delivered before the Association, said, “ Maryland proffers her claims as the birthplace of American Methodism, under the ministry of Robert Strawbridge, in Frederick County, about 1760-say 120 years ago. New York claims the same honour for Philip Embury, one is Maryland history, the other New York. Each claimant is satisfied with the proof and title to priority. So let it be. We are amongst the firstborn of American Methodism," where so many minds differ in opinion, a stranger cannot decide.” Being in Baltimore, the metropolitan city of Maryland, and mingling considerably with preachers and people, it need be no surprise that my judgment inclines to the priority of R. Strawbridge, the first active Wesleyan Local Preacher in America.
After fulfilling many engagements, it brought me to the beginning of a winter unparalled for severity for more than half a century, rendering it impossible to proceed, up to the present time, on a long course of travel still before me, which will render it, I am sorry to say, impossible for me to return in time to join in our annual gathering at Sheffield, in June next. I feel deeply indebted to the dear brethren in this country for the extreme kindness I have met with, being invited to all their meetings, public and private, and published to occupy the pulpit of one or other of their most beautiful churches. I take this, of course, as a compliment to the Association I represent.
The honour of preaching the first Methodist sermon in Baltimore belonged to John King, an English Methodist Local Preacher, who emigrated to America 1769, and desired a licence to preach. While that was being considered, King appointed to preach at Potters Square Fields, among the graves of the poor. It was not long before he met with Strawbridge, in his embryo circuit in Maryland. For some time the two travelled and preached together right lovingly. His first sermon at Baltimore was preached upon a blacksmith's block. This part, which now comprises one of the finest portions of the city, containing amongst other notable structures, the famous marble Washington monument, and the very elegant Mount Vernon Episcopal Church.
The President was good enough to send me the following letter :
“ October 21st, 1880. “ Rev. W. Jameson, in company with the Rev. I. P. Cook, and others of the National Association of Local Preachers of the Methodist Episcopal Church, visited Mount Olivet Cemetery, near Baltimore city. It contains about sixty acres of ground, securely enclosed with a keeper's house and gateway, built of stone. It is the great Methodist burial-ground, and is the exclusive property of the Methodist Church, sold under certain con. ditions to any purchaser. A plot of ground secured by granite carb and iron railings, is designated as the preacher's lot, in which travelling preachers may be interred. That lot is a most sacred place on account of the dead whose ashes rest there.
1. A marble monument bears the name, Robert Strawbridge, a Local Preacher from Ireland, who introduced Wesleyan Methodism into Maryland, and the first in America, about 1760.
2. The Bishop's monument, large and costly, bearing the name of Francis Asbury, from England, the first ordained Protestant Bishop in America ; Enoch George, a holy, melting, useful bishop ; James Emory, a bishop of great learning, who was killed by being thrown from his carriage ; Bishop Beverley Waugh, a man of spotless character, holy, and useful.
3. A beautiful polished marble monument in memory of Jesse Lee; the first to establish Methodism in New England States, about ninety years since.
4. A stone monument to Henry Smith, the beloved John of Baltimore Conference, who died aged ninety-three.
The other monuments and gravestones are too numerous to name. Many local and travelling preachers are interred in their family lots, with monuments and gravestones. It is fast becoming the city of the dead in Christ. The place where human harvest grows, awaiting the first resurrection of the dead."
On our return we passed “The Home for Aged Methodists," a large, handsome brick building, into which persons of our church no less than sixty years of age are admitted for life, on the payment of one certain
money by their friends. There are about fifty inmates, comfortable and happy. (I preached to them a few Sundays ago.) The Centenary Biblical Institute for the education of young men of colour as teachers, or for the ministry, is a costly stone building, nearly completed. When ready, the present school will be removed thither. There are about fifty young men receiving instruction.”
ON THE WAY TO NEW ZEALAND.
(Continued.) November 6th, 1880.- Arrived in the beautiful bay of St. Vincent, and at 2 p.m. cast anchor in twelve fathoms of clear, pale-blue water, which, for bathing and fishing, is all that could be desired. From a cloudless sky a burning sun poured down his rays upon us. The thermometer stood 96. in the shade. The bay is belted round with a chain of rugged, barren mountains, evidently of volcanic origin. The town, as it is called, is a miserable looking place, stretching along the basis of the mountains, and is comprised principally of low mud huts, inhabited by a fine specimen of the coloured race. The men are generally tall and well-proportioned; and some of the ladies pronounced their countenances to be of a pleasant cast. In business matters they are shrewd, and know how to drive a bargain, and keep on the right side. Presently the coloured merchants were floating round about us with their boats well stocked with articles of merchandise : chains of black and white coral, &c., and splendid tropical fruits--oranges, lemons and bananas. The market was fairly opened, and a fine stroke of business done. From twenty voices, male and female, “ How much for one hundred oranges
66 6s. 60. !” “ No!” “ Then 5s. 6d.” No, no." Well, will you give 48. 6d. ? ye monish first.” "No! send up that bag !” After much ado we got the bag and selected three hundred fine oranges. Some stupids paid the money first, but the dark fraternity never learnt how to give change; had none, or would row to shore to get it, but forgot to return till the vessel was gone. Altogether we had thirty hours at St. Vincent, enlivened by many amusing incidents. Coal secured, and anchor weighed, off we started for seven weeks more of cloud and sunshine, storms and calms. Little did I think what a wide world of water lay before us; seven weeks, and never saw land or sail. Life upon the ocean deep is not at all desirable when
you have a number of disagreeable associates. Only imagine! Nearly five hundred human beings cooped up into the contracted space of 290 ft. by 40 ft. Our first week passed away in comparative silence and seclusion. The doctor and nurse were considerably more in request than the cook and the waiter. Our first Sabbath dawned with many smiles : a cool breeze, a clear sky, and a warm sun. At 11 a.m, the Church bell rang out its sweet notes, inviting all to worship Him who made the sea, and whose hands fashioned the dry land. Mr. Jones, an elderly clergyman, preached an excellent sermon.
In the afternoon a chiidrens' seryice was held, and the young hearers appeared to be interested very much. In the evening Mr. Gillam, a young Wesleyan Minister, delivered his message with intelligence and zeal worthy of his Master's cause. All honour to this excellent young minister, who, in the face of great opposition and many petty annoyances, was yet undaunted. Infidelity raged, and threatened terrible things. He
would absolutely ring for his supper in the midst of the sermon. Young ladies, too, curled up their lips with constant sneers : 66 We don't approve of double-faced young men.” “Ministers ought to live what they profess to be," &c.
Mr. Gillam had spent one hour with a band of spiritualists, and that was his crime. By-the-bye, the spirit told them that evening that the great tragedian, Irving, in London, had died that night, and his spirit was then present with them. To my great astonishment, when I arrived in Christchurch I found that his death had been announced by telegram some three or four weeks before. To me it is almost incomprehensible ; but one thing is certain, if Irving really is dead, no human being could possibly bave communicated the intelligence to us in mid-ocean, thousands of miles from land. The superstitious sailors augured terrible things. Things never go well when there are parsons on board; winds and waves always contrary.
The young men were exceedingly humane. It had been my custom for some nights to sleep on deck; so they embraced the opportunity in the stillness of the night to drench me with nine pails of water, and sent my iron bedstead overboard for Neptune to sleep upon. Poor young men ! I had nothing but pity for them. When money and friends are gone landed on a foreign shore, far away from the kind ministering hand, which had turned the door-key many and many a time long after midnight hours; then the solemn hours of reflection come, and oh! what bitter pangs they will have. Some of them had respectable, well-to-do Wesleyan parents. One young man, mad with whisky, dashed his gold about like dust ; another dealt it out to the seamen with a prodigal's hand. Cardplaying, dice-throwing, gambling, drinking, and the use of terribly blasphemous language was the order of the day with them.
In all sincerity I would say to the parents of England, if you love your sons and daughters, and desire their spiritual welfare, never send them on long sea voyages, except you are with them to shield and guard from the most subtle influences which the gold-lace gentlemen draw around them. Poor innocents ! they soon fall into the meshes. The whisky bottle is the great fosterer of evil. Ships ought never to be sailing grog-shops. A tremendous responsibility rests somewhere. To speak of all that I have seen, I dare not. Imagine a young lady drunk; others dressed up in men's clothes. One's inmost nature revolts at the scenes we are compelled to witness. If Plimsoll would only take the matter in hand, and get a law passed that no drink sbould be sold, or had, on board a vessel, virtue would triumph, and the Insurance Companies would be great gainers. Should I ever cross the ocean again, my first inquiry will not be, what vessel ? bat, Who is the captain ? Is he a man who fears God, and hates strong drink?