bullet Moravian Indians – Philadelphia Barracks 1764

 

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The Moravian Indians remained at the Philadelphia barracks until April 1765, fourteen months after their brief trip to Amboy. During that period, Brothers Grube and Schmick—with help from Brothers Zeisberger and Rothe— continued with the daily rhythm of prayer and services, while struggling with serious shortages in provisions, nearly constant visits from Philadelphians interested in seeing the Indians, devastating illness that killed dozens of members of the little congregation, and increasing discontent among the Indians, particularly the younger men. What follows is an abridgement of the community diary. Places where text has been omitted are indicated with a †.

 

Diary of the Indian Gemeine in the Barracks in Philadelphia

January 24: We came happily back to Philadelphia and were immediately lodged in the barracks; a watched was placed before our house. We were very heartily thankful to our Lord that, on our very difficult trip, he so mercifully led us and helped us through. Brs. Grube and Schmick slept in the barracks.

January 25: We began to settle in a bit. The things that we had left behind on Province Island came to us, although our good Indians missed many things, particularly axes, that had been stolen. In the evening, Br. Grube held a service in his own room.

January 26: Br. and Sr. Schmick, as well as Sr. Grube, moved out of the Brethren’s House and into the barracks, which pleased our dear Indians very much.

January 27: Our dear hearts David and Rothe, who showed so much love and faithfulness to our Indians on the trip, went back to Bethlehem. Br. Schmick held the evening service in the barracks kitchen, which we will hereafter use for our gatherings.

January 28: Br. Grube held a gathering at noon in which he mentioned various things, particularly that our people should in no way get involved with the soldiers. In the afternoon, Mr. Fox and two more gentle-people visited Br. Grube and said to him that tomorrow Joh. Pepunhang and his family from Frankfurt would come to live with us, because he desired it. Br. Schmick had much to order today in the city. Br. Grube held the evening service.

January 29 [Symbol for Sunday]: The sermon was at midday. Many people from the city attended. The two lieutenants, Winter and Gallo, visited us. The young people from the city nearly overran us; the watch was not in a position to keep them away. Br. Schmick, who went to Frankfurt on the request of Mr. James, came back and brought Joh. Pepunhang and his family, who were extraordinarily pleased to see us. In the evening, Br. Schmick held the service. The watch was set double tonight because the officers suspected that everything was not quite right around us. Various brothers and sisters from the city visited us today.

January 30: Br. Grube held the evening service about the Daily Text: Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime.(1) Ah! How our hearts longed [upon hearing the text] to find a place of rest again soon, where we could live in peace.

January 31: Our Indian brothers conversed with Joh. Pepunhang and wished that the Government might soon send an message into Indian country, so that hostilely-disposed Indians will not come to the idea that we had all already been killed. Br. Schmick visited Mr. Fox. In the evening service, today’s Daily Text was discussed with much comfort: but the soul of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of life with the Lord thy god. (2)

1. 2 Sam. 7:10. English translation from the King James Version.
2. Sam. 25:29. English translation taken from the King James Version.


February

February 1: In the morning, Br. Grube visited Mr. Logan, the Governor’s counselor, and spoke with him regarding the commission to the Six Nations that our Indians were given by the Honorable Governor, and that they wanted to deliver it again. At the same time, it was very important to Pepunhang that a message be sent very soon, before an attack of enemy Indians could happen. Br. Grube also visited Captain Schlosser and gave him an idea of our Indians. He said yes, I see well that these are completely different Indians than I have seen in Indians country, etc. In the afternoon, Sr. Grube held interviews with the Widows for their festival tomorrow, about which they were pleased. Br. Schmick held the evening service.

February 2: Br. Grube brought the belts to Mr. Logan again, together with the silk cloths. In the afternoon, Br. Ockly visited us, as did Mr. Fox, who was very warm and friendly to us and asked Joh. Pepunhang: now you are very well pleased that you are among your people again, which he affirmed with a joyful "Kehella." Br. Grube held a quarter-hour service for the widows, numbering fourteen, for their festival today.(1) Afterwards they had a small but pleasant Love Feast in which much was discussed, in particular our trip to Amboy. Our old, blind Thamar and Hanna said that they remembered well the time when no houses had stood in Amboy or Brunswick, and many hundreds of Indians had lived around there. (Building in Amboy was begun eighty-one years ago.) First Lieutenant Winter and two more soldiers were in the evening service.

February 3: Br. Schmick held the morning service. After that, a quarter of a cord of wood was distributed to every room, for which everyone was glad, as many had not a stick more to burn. Br. Schmick visited Ludwig Weiss, who drafted a memorial to the Honorable Governor Pepunhang’s name regarding his message to Indian Land. Br. Schmick brought it to the Honorable Secretary, where the Governor happened to be. He asked Br. Schmick how our Indians were doing, whether they were quite well and content, to which Br. Schmick responded in the affirmative.

February 4: Br. Neusser and Ludwig Weiss visited us. We heard a lot of bad reports. In the afternoon, Captain Schlosser came and reported to us that we should move to the second story with the soldiers, because there were no keys if the rooms should be broken into. Because the order regarding the moving of the soldiers came so late, a great confusion arose between them and our poor Indians, who were chased from one place to another, particularly when a couple shots happened outside the barracks, so that everyone got alarmed and made ready to fight. We then had our hands full with our Indians, getting them in their lodgings, and quieting them. Our Daily Text was ever in mind: Ye shall not shout, nor make any noise with your voice, etc.(2) The love will guide us, prepare the path, and with the eyes point to many things, if it be time to fight or if it be a day of rest.(3) Eight cannons were also mounted and a breastworks was made in the middle of the square. Our good Indians appeared openly saddened by the circumstances, and who could comfort them better than our dear Lord himself.

February 5 [Symbol for Sunday]: We had had a very troubled night, and slept very little. The Honorable Governor himself had been in the barracks the whole night, visited our Indians at midnight, and cheered them, and was particularly friendly to the children, which made our Indians glad. 200 citizens were also here for defense, and they were replaced by others this morning. Alongside the commanding officers, many distinguished people from the city were also here. At midday, Br. Grube and Schmick held services in the rooms because we could not come together in our normal gathering place due to the unrest. In the afternoon, several brothers and sisters from the city visited us. Our Indians did not come out of their rooms today. They were very frightened by the 18-pound cannons, and because they stood so near to the house, the windows also suffered some damage. The watches were set double. Our hearts were quite light today, however, and the Daily Text comforted us.

February 6: At midnight a great alarm was sounded. Everyone took up arms, the bells in the city were rung, the citizenry awoken and called to city hall because the news came in that the rebels would be there at daybreak. Our Indians slept very peacefully and took little notice of the noise. This morning some Brethren from the city visited us. The whole day was spent in the greatest commotion. Two citizen-companies, including many Quakers carrying arms,(4) arrived here. The Indians were visited quite frequently. A message came in that a party of the rebels had already arrived in Germantown. This evening Brs. Grube and Schmick brought the Daily Text to our Indian Brethren for comfort: for there is no restraint to the Lord to save by many or by few.(5)

February 7: We held services in the rooms and spoke about our beautiful text for today: Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.(6) Oh now let him continue to do so. The bells in the city were soon rung again for the gathering of the citizens. Four more cannons were mounted before our house and loaded with grapeshot. We heard today that the rebels insist on having a few of our Indians that they allege to have seen in Pittsburgh and in other places. Moreover, we heard that our dear old Jacob has become sick in prison with smallpox and ...

February 8: ... in the morning at six o’clock passed away. Today there were various alarms. The soldiers were arranged at posts. A few Quakers told us that the enemies had wanted to attack Joh. Pepunhang and his family in Frankfurt, but, God be praised, he was already gone. Mr. Fox and Mr. Pemperton also had to leave the city for the Jerseys. Sr. Schmicken came down with hemorrhagic fever today, and Geschee, Renatus’s wife, came down with the pox. Our good Indians also had to endure much cold, because there is little wood to be had. The evening service was held in the normal calmness.

February 9: The body of our blessed old Jacob was brought to the Potters Field to rest and was blessed by Br. Schmick. Mr. Daniel Benezet and various Brethren were also there. Br. Schmick visited Mr. Fox, who was very glad to see him and to hear of the well being of the Indians. Mr. Huse, the Commissioner, visited all our Indians with one of the Paxtons and looked at them closely, but he recognized none. A minister from the English church came and wished our Indians much joy and deliverance.(7) He was particularly pleased with our children, who greeted him and shook his hand. In the evening, the officers from the artillery came to visit and wished our Indians well. The Honorable Governor’s brother, with several more gentlemen, were taken around the city. Above all, many people are pleased that the matter is concluded so well and without bloodshed. We received letters from our dear hearts Nathanael and Peter, which comforted us greatly. In the evening service, the greetings from them were bestowed on the brothers and sisters. Sr. Schmick was very sick today, she had to be bled.

February 10: We had the usual visitors. Mr. Anthony Benezet and a few other Quakers were sent here from their Society to inquire of us whether several Indians here were missed, because there is a report in the city that the Quakers had taken six of our Indians out of the barracks and enticed them to their side. In the evening, Captains Schlosser and Makintosch asked the same thing. We could assure them of the opposite, however.

February 11: Br. Grube held the morning and Br. Schmick the evening services in our normal gathering place. Captain Schlosser, with various dignitaries from the city, visited the Indians. The Quakers also came to see us a lot. Juliana, Jemy’s wife, bore a son. Both asked for the baptism of their child. We told them, however, that it could not happen until they themselves were both absolved by the Savior and the Gemeine, etc.

February 12 [Symbol for Sunday]: Br. Schmick preached about the Strength of God that makes blessed all that believe in it. Many people from the city and soldiers were at the sermon. In the afternoon, a great many people were here to see the Indians, they had to bar their rooms in order to have a little peace. Many people came and asked about the service, because the soldiers talk much about how prettily our Indians can sing. In the evening, Br. Grube held the service about the Daily Text: And the Lord was gracious unto them, and had compassion on them, and had respect unto them, because of his covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.(8) In the evening at nine o’clock Geschee, Renatus’s wife, went blessedly to the Savior from the pox.

February 13: Br. Schmick held the early service, after which he went to Mr. Fox and Renatus in order to tell them about Geschee’s passing. The good Renatus wept much for his wife. In the evening service, soldiers and other people were again there.

February 14: The body of our dear Geschee was brought to rest in the Potters Field by Br. Grube. Mr. Fox visited the Indians, who gave him a friendly greeting.

February 16: Br. Schmick held the early service about the Daily Text. Our Br. Grube was very sick, he had feverish shakes and much pain. Benigna and A. Justina were spoken to separately about the circumstances of their hearts, because they had trespassed during the trip. Ludwig Weiss was here to visit in the morning and afternoon. Colonel Clöther and Colonel Worck and Job Chelloway visited Joh. Pepunhang. The regimental doctor, Stieversen, send some powders for the sick Nathan. Capt. Makintosch and Lieut. Winter, as well as several Quakers, visited the Indians.

February 17: Joh. Pepunhang and his wife were spoken to because he thinks of going on a trip to Indian country soon. Everyone was busy all day long with chopping wood, which was distributed. Others made leather from beaver pelts that a hat maker in the city had given to our Indians. Br. Grube was somewhat better. Mr. Thom. Epty spoke here and reported on his journey to Sir William Johnson. Nathan lay very sick and is very swollen in the face.

February 18: Br. Schmick went into the city to buy some things for us and for the Indians. Ludwig and Jacob Weiss were here to visit in the morning, the latter to bleed Br. Grube. In the afternoon, many people from the city were here to see the Indians. Towards evening Lieut. Winter asked permission to bring four gentlemen to our evening service.

[Symbol for Sunday] February 19: At midday, Br. Schmick preached about today’s Doctrinal Text, soldiers and other people were present. In the afternoon, a soldier who died here yesterday was buried, accompanied by his Company. The Honorable Governor’s brother was also here.

February 20: After the early service, first Br. Schmick and then his wife visited the Indians in their rooms, and they found several sick.

February 21: Our dear Joh. Pepunhang tearfully left us for his journey into Indian Country. Job Chelloway, his interpreter, went with him, and Colonel Clöthen will accompany them to Fort Allen. The Honorable Governor was here incognito and visited our Indians, particularly Joh. Pepunhang. At first, we were not aware [of his presence], until Br. Schmick recognized him outside the barracks. He was surprised that Br. Schmick lived in the barracks, he had thought [Schmick lived] in the Moravian House. Br. Schmick held the morning and evening services, after which a soldier came to Br. Schmick and thanked him very much that he had permission to go to the meetings, because he had not heard the word of God for six or seven years. These three companies of soldiers that are stationed here had been scattered since the last war in Canada, and many of them were stationed in the farthest forts that the English had taken from the French, but which were [then] taken again by the Indians in the current war, and their garrisons taken prisoner or killed. The officers and soldiers testify that there are so many Indians where they were that it would be impossible to wipe them out or bring them under the yoke.

February 23: After the morning service, Br. Schmick held a quarter-hour service for the communicant brothers and sisters and made known to them that the Abendmahl would be held this weekend. We began to interview [people in preparation for communion] and continued with it. Margin note: Br. Schmick visited Renatus in prison.

February 24: Most brothers and sisters were pleased and happy to enjoy the great thing [Abendmahl] again. They particularly expressed the thoughts of their hearts about the current difficult situation. A few said, we do not fear dying any more, we belong to the Savior and go to Him when we die. Others said: During the recent commotion, we were seized by fear, but we lay by the bed and prayed to the Savior, and he comforted us in our hearts so that all fear and anxiety disappeared. Of course, our poor people long for a place where they can live halfway safe again, for some people it causes some melancholy thoughts. Now dear Father in heaven has cared for us so faithfully before, He will continue to do so.

February 25: Br. Grube held the morning service on the today’s Daily Text. In the evening, Br. Schmick held the Singstunde, after which the communicant brothers and sisters had a pleasant Love Feast. A merciful Absolution then followed and the most blessed taste of the body and blood of our Lord. How courageous the poor little brown church was on its pilgrimage one cannot well describe. The number of the communicants was 37. This time seven could not go to Abendmahl. We were also especially thankful and glad that we were not disturbed and could hold it quite well in Br. Grube’s room.

[Symbol for Sunday] February 26: At noon Br. Grube preached about today’s text: We preach the crucified Christ etc. Various brothers and sisters from the city attended. In the afternoon, there were unusually many people here, particularly young people, to see the Indians. In the evening service, which Br. Schmick held, there were so many white people that half the audience had to stand outside the door. They were all very attentive and quiet. Nothing charmed the people more than to hear the Indians sing, and if we had a larger gathering space we could have several hundred in attendance daily. This evening little Jacob, Renatus’s son, was kissed home by the lamb [died] and ...

February 27: ... was buried by Br. Schmick at the Potters Field. As Renatus heard [the news] in prison, he wept bitterly and said, it is very hard for me, that I have lost my father, wife, and child, ah if only I would also be released.(9)

February 28: Many visitors were here again. A man from Skippack brought a sack full of axes and made a gift of them to the Indians. A soldier came to Br. Schmick with a letter of recommendation from Captain Schlosser and maintained strongly that he was trusted by him, but he was turned down. Peter Müller’s wife from Germantown visited us and the Indians with her daughter-in-law and were heartily kissed by the Indians. In the evening, Br. Grube held a service in the room, a few German people came and asked to listen.

February 29: We received many letters from Bethlehem and Nazareth. We closed this remarkable month, in which we have felt God’s miraculous hand over His people, with thanks and genuflection. The services were held daily, we have had many white people, particularly in the evening, as listeners. Now we want to see what our Lord will do to us in the future.

1. The Widow's choir celebrated an annual festival on February 2.
2. Josua 6:10. English translation taken from the King James version.
3. 1764 Daily Text book hymn citation: 1208, 1.
4. In addition to the underlining, this passage is highlighted with a "NB" in the margin.
5. 1 Sam. 14:6. English translation from the King James Version.
6. 1 Sam. 7:12. English translation from the King James Version.
7. The phrase "much joy and deliverance" is written in English in the original.
8. 2 Kings 13:23. English Translation taken from the King James Version.
9. German: "erlößt": This word carried the religious connotation of redeemed or saved, as well as the literal meaning of released. Presumably, the diarist meant to imply that Renatus wanted to be released from life, although his literal imprisonment give the statement a double meaning.



Diary of the Indian Gemeine in the Philadelphia Barracks

[note in pencil: revised version]

March 1764

March 1: Br. Schmick held an earnest and forceful morning service, because a few of our bad people behaved very poorly last night. We sent letters to Bethlehem with the Nazareth wagon, as well as the diary for the last months.

March 2: The soldiers received orders from Captain Schlosser not to let anyone into the barracks without permission from the officers, because the Indians will be overrun by all kinds of people and a mishap could easily happen. Because Peter was disobedient to the brothers and against our will had traded with the soldiers, 3 gold that he had received the day before for his horse was stolen out of his pocket by a soldier. Brother and Sister Neusser and a few other sisters were here to visit, as well as Mr. Pemperton, who bought many spoons from our Indians. A good friend from Lancaster visited the Indians with pleasure.

March 4 [Symbol for Sunday]: Br. Schmick preached in the Mahican language. Many people from the city were in the meeting. At the evening service, Br. Grube spoke about the Daily Text: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.(2) Various orderly city-people and soldiers listened with devotion. Our Indians had more peace today than usual, because the watch had strict orders to let no one in the Indian rooms.

March 5: It was quiet calm around us. Our men folk were diligently making spoons so that they could buy some bread for their children.

March 6: Br. Micksch came as an Express with letters from Bethlehem. Br. Schmick went immediately thereafter to Mr. Fox to speak about the Indian Single Sisters which are to be sent here from Bethlehem.

March 7: Our dear David Zeisberger came here from Bethlehem with the intention of going on pilgrimage with us again. A few of our Indians began to be sickly, because they are not accustomed to eating salted meat and fish.

March 9: Mr. Epdy came to visit. He came back from Sir William Johnson yesterday, but he could report nothing reliable about our coming trip. In the afternoon, Sr. Anna Rosel came from Bethlehem with the stage and brought four Indian Single Sisters with her, who are to remain in the barracks with us. They were lodged with Br. and Sr. Schebosch and their child in a separate room. Their arrival was soon after reported to the Governor and the commanding officers. Br. Marshall and David visited us. Jannetje, Regina, and Eva, who had nursed Geschee and her child and [then] withstood their [consequent] quarantine, were put back in their rooms. Andreas and David got fevers. In the evening was a Singstunde.

March 18 [Symbol for Sunday]: Br. Schmick preached in the morning and in the evening Br. Grube held the service. This afternoon was very uneasy here, the people from the city frequently come to see the Indians.

March 19: Br. Schmick went to the Honorable Governor in order to learn whether our trip will soon take place.(2) He received for an answer, however, that the matter is not yet determined. Jacob Weiss visited our sick people and gave them medicine. Captain Makintosch, who saw our Indian Single Sisters, regretted greatly that they should be brought into the wilderness, admired their decency, and said: I have never seen such people in my life. So say many other people who come to see them. Even the soldiers respect for their rooms and do not come near them.

March 20: Captain Mackintosch searched the barracks because so many dissolute women folk stay here and engage in such an immoral life with the soldiers that there is little rest for them, day or night. Br. Schittelhelm’s youngest son gave a Love Feast to our Indian boys for his birthday today. Our children sang a little verse to him; at the end, they all kissed him heartily. There were strangers again in the evening service.

March 22: After the morning service, the communicant brothers and sisters had their quarter-hour service, in which it was made known to them that we would have Abendmahl [communion] this week. Br. and Sr. Schmick began to interview those from Nain, and the Grubes those from Weequetank. We found that the dear Mother [Holy Spirit] works incessantly on the hearts. Many wept for joy when they heard that even here in the barracks there shall be Abendmahl, and said: we feel ashamed that the Savior does so much good for us when we are yet such bad people. We want to stay with Jesus’ people, if the Brethren should leave us, however, we would be very sad, since the words which the Brethren say to us from the Savior are our comfort, particularly in our current sad and difficult circumstances, when almost all people hate us and want to kill us.

March 23: We heard that one does not want us to have permission to move through New York.

March 25 [Symbol for Sunday]: At midday, Br. Grube preached about the subject of today’s festival. In the afternoon was the Abendmahl. Soon afterwards, Johannes Pepunhang and Job. Chelloway arrived in the company of Major Clayton and Capt. Ervins, from the Susquehanna via Bethlehem, which made us very glad, because for a few days already we had been very worried about our dear Johannes Pepunhang. [He also] brought his daughter with him from Machchihising. The Indians up there are said to live in much uneasiness and have to suffer much hunger. Br. David Zeisberger held a blessed evening service.

1. Numbers 6:26. English translation taken from the King James Version.
2. Discussions about how and when to return the Indians to "Indian Country" continued for over a year.


April

April 1 [Symbol for Sunday]: In the morning, Br. Schmick preached and had many people to listen. It was very hard for us today, because too many people came into the barracks to see the Indians. We therefore asked the sergeant from the watch to put a stop to their coming.

April 2: Capt. Schlosser visited us. He told us that, on order of the colonel, he and his company would march away from here at the earliest day. We were very worried about our poor Indians because it seemed that no one wants to take care of them anymore. One sees in the writings that are published almost every day the many accusations and great enmity against our Indians; that through [such writings] the people are enticed to be more and more against us, and if our dear Lord does not specifically protect us, then we must still become victims. Today we had our people bled. Benjamin is very sick and contract. [Part of entry omitted]

April 3: Because last night again two of our worst people behaved themselves badly, Josua talked with the Mahican people and Anton with the Delaware, and explained to them the kind of misfortune that could come to all of them because of a couple bad people. The ill-doers promised that they would never again do it. The Single Sister Marthel was sick. Mr. Fox provided us with food today.

April 5: Dear Br. Peter from Bethlehem gladdened us with his visit, he saw all of the Indians in their rooms. They greeted him warmly and rejoiced to see their dear Br. Peter one more time. Br. Schmick and Br. David went to visit some of the Honorable Governor’s advisors this afternoon, in order to make known the concerns of the Indians. Br. Marshall visited us. Our men folk gathered today and deliberated over the suggestion that they wanted to make to the Governor regarding their trip to General Johnson, namely, that the Government might bring them to the border, and afterwards they would see how they could get themselves through.

April 7: Br. Schmick and Br. David went to the Honorable Governor and conveyed the concerns of the Indians. At the same time, they visited several other Magistrates to get an idea of their good advice. They came back home however without any hope that our poor Indians might be helped. Our dear Indians were totally downcast by this news. We consoled them though, that our dear Lord would already have an idea for them, although it was as yet impossible to see it. Some Quaker women visited our Indians and gave our Single Sisters 20 Shillings. Two Indians from Mr. Braynard’s people from the Jerseys visited their friends here.

April 10: The Honorable Governor sent his Secretary and one of his Counselors to our Indians to hear their suggestions about how they thought to come to Sir William Johnson. Our Indians explained themselves thus: that it was quite possible; if they were first brought safely to the frontier, they could help themselves to get farther. These two gentlemen promised to inform the Honorable Governor, to whom it was very important that the Indians might be safely and happily brought to their lands again, etc. etc. Colonel Bouquet and many officers were in the barracks for the mustering and exercising of the soldiers. Yesterday our dear old Emy went with her sister to the Jerseys; we had nothing against it, because she is old and incapacitated and can not get along any more, her heart will stay with the Savior and keep His people dear.

April 12: We had a blessed morning service. At midday, Mr. Fox came and told us in the name of the Honorable Governor that he, with his Counsel, had considered our circumstances, [but] they could not give us permission to go to New York and settle there. In the current situation, we could not be sent to Indian country, because we would lack for food and could quite easily come into danger of being attacked by enemy Indians. Also, we could easily be blamed if a murder should be committed on the border. Thus it had been concluded that we should be transported back to Province Island, and a watch of soldiers would be provided. As our Indian Brethren heard this report, they were very glad and had Mr. Fox thank the Honorable Governor. We had been perplexed about our Indians for several weeks and have given our faithful Lord many good words about them, that he might arrange everything according to his Heart. And we repeat to Him in reward and praise, He had made everything well so far.

April 13: Br. and Sr. Schmick and Sr. Grube visited Mistress Fox and were welcomed very warmly by her. Various officers and distinguished people were here to visit. The young Josua had to play for them on the spinet, which amazed them.

April 16: Br. Rothe, who stayed here for a long time and wanted to come with us to Indian country, went back to Bethlehem. Our dear David Zeisberger, however, resolved to stay here until Br. and Sr. Grube, who are going to Bethlehem to the synod, come back again.

April 18: Br. and Sr. Grube visited poor Renatus in prison, who was very glad of the visit. He is healthy and well and spends most of his time reading in children’s books. He asked often: Will I not be freed soon—because I am very tired of being here among the mean people.

April 19: The communicant brothers and sisters had a quarter-hour service for Maundy Thursday. Then were the interviews for Abendmahl. In the evening, first the sisters then the brothers had a blessed Foot Washing service. They were all very ashamed over the very unexpected blessing, because they thought that there was no possibility of having such a thing here. Br. David Zeisberger remained in the barracks with us this night.

April 20: Br. Schmick held the morning service. At ten o’clock, a beginning was made with reading the story of the suffering of our Lord in the Mahican language. Most of the day was spent doing it, many tears were spilt in the process, our Johannes Pepunhang, who heard it for the first time, was particularly taken by it. The soldiers were amazed by our frequent gatherings. In the evening, the communicant Gemeine, numbering 42, came together to taste the sacrament of our Lord. Joh. Pepunhang had the blessing of watching. Oh how glad and thankful we were to our bloody martyred man for this blessed day, which we could still hold undisturbed in the middle of the noise of the Earth.


Diary of the Indian Gemeine in the barracks in Philadelphia

April 1764 – June [closing date written in pencil]

_

April 24: In the morning service, we gave ourselves anew to our dear man of pain. The brothers made spoons and the sisters baskets the entire day, so that they could buy some bread. Towards evening, David Owns, who recently came down here from the Susquehanna, was here with another man. He gave our people several reports from their friends who still live up there in peace and quiet. In the evening, Br. David held a blessed meeting [to celebrate] the joy of the Lord.

April 25: Br. Schmick held the morning and evening services. In the afternoon, Mr. Fox visited us and recommended our Indians have patience in the current circumstances.

April 30: Br. Schmick visited the poor Renatus in jail and held a blessed band with him, for which he was very thankful. In the afternoon, Mr. Fox was here, and when he heard and saw that the Indians lacked wood, he went to the water himself, bought a couple wagons full, and brought them here. The Indians thanked him warmly, which pleased him well.


May

May 1: We thank our dear Lord from our hearts that He had let us feel something of his martyred and bloody atonement. Throughout the day, there were visitors from the city, the people bought spoons and baskets, the boys, however, [bought] bows and arrows.

May 5: The soldiers marched out for Lancaster and Fort Loudon. One sergeant, with six healthy and six sick [soldiers], was left here for a watch.

[Symbol for Sunday] May 6: We felt strikingly well in the sermon and in the evening service. Many listeners from the city attended. In total, there were more than 1,000 people here today to see the Indians, who showed themselves very orderly and friendly. Various Brethren from the city and countryside visited us.

May 7: There were many people here again in the afternoon, among whom were Pastor Handschu and two colleagues, who are recently come from Europe. They inquired about the Indians and asked if they believed in the Savior, and since they heard that most were not only baptized but also went to communion, they were amazed and wished Br. Schmick much luck and blessings in his work. Johannes Pepunhang’s daughter came and spoke with us about her heart and [said] that she had already felt a desire for the Savior several times and would like to be baptized, since she did not know what else would help her.

May 8: In the morning, Sr. Schebosh bore a little daughter, who...

May 9: in the morning service was baptized by Br. Schmick and named Christiana. Josua Senior was very sick, also Johannis’ second daughter, Martha. An old man from Machchilusing and Pepunhang’s daughter asked for baptism.

May 10: Many boys from the city brought hickory wood in order to have bows and arrows made, in this way our boys earn some pennies for themselves with which they can buy bread.

May 15: Near morning, Johannis’ and Lorel’s second daughter, Martha, [who was] ten years old, went to the Savior and was buried in the evening. Our dear Br. David Zeisberger also traveled from here to Bethlehem. He had stayed here ten weeks and served us very faithfully. This morning Br. Grube began an English school with the young people, who want it very much, and through it also gain more occupation.(1)

May 17: Mr. Penn, the Honorable Governor’s brother, visited all the Indians in their rooms with an officer, and asked Br. Schmick about a few things, namely, whether the Indians had enough to eat, [and] whether they were glad to remain in the barracks, and said: the latter [staying in the barracks] would be the best for them, because it would now be too unhealthy on Province Island. Because the soldiers are now gone, we can lodge our Indians better and with more room [by remaining in the barracks], which was very pleasing to them. Johannes, Lorel’s husband, was very sick.

May 19: Two Indian women came from the Jerseys and wanted to visit our Indians, but because they were drunk and had rum on them, they had to leave again. Today we had the first bread baked from our portion of flour by Br. Johann Peter, because we are not in a position to buy it any longer. In the evening service, we laid ourselves especially before the Savior’s heart and recommended ourselves to His faithful protection.

May 22: The sick Johannes was absolved and went soon after to the Savior. He was baptized in 1744 in Shecomeco by the blessed Christian Henrich, came in 1748 to Gnadenhütten to live and was an participant at communion. When Gnadenhütten was destroyed, he lived for a while in Bethlehem and Gnadenthal, and finally in Nain, where he came into a confusion with his wife, and he went from there to the Susquehanna with his children, lived a year there, [then] came finally, though many prayers from his poor children, back to Nain, and asked for a little place to live with the Brethren, which was granted to him and his wife in Weequetank. He had a mild and changeable character, but there was a blessed election of him, thus the Savior brought him back to His people. Towards evening the Honorable Governor came here with his brother and a few other gentlemen to see the Indians, ordered a few Indian shoes and asked the young Josua to play the spinet, which they listened to with astonishment. In the afternoon, the sisters had an unusual gathering in which much about the rooms and the cooking was discussed. Finally, the new establishment of bands was made known to them, which was very dear to them and they wept for joy. They said also, we would like to become good and obedient children. Jacob Weiss was assigned to us by the Honorable Commissioners as a doctor.

May 29: Our dear heart Nathanael came from Bethlehem to visit and was warmly welcomed by our Indian Brethren. The old Josua became quite violently sick with colic.

1. "Occupation" appears in English in the original. It is unclear if the writer meant the school would give the young Indians more to do during their stay in the barracks or more opportunities once their stay in Philadelphia was over.


June

June 1: After the morning service, the communicants were informed in a special gathering about tomorrow’s Abendmahl, for which they were also interviewed. A brother and sister, who were not participants last time, were very small and sinner-like, and asked for forgiveness. The sick Lorel, who up to now has been in a bad situation of the heart and as if hardened, recognized her sins and asked for forgiveness, because she believes she will soon go out of time. The old Sarah, Abraham’s widow, who has been taking care of the sick, also became sick. A thorough band was held with Josua on his sickbed, and he was ashamed that he concerned himself with unnecessary thoughts.

June 7: Early in the morning, Lorel’s body was brought to rest. Late in the evening, Mr. Fox came to us and brought fourteen Indians with him, Nanticokes and Delawares, who have been staying in the Jerseys for a while and were maintained by the Quakers, who have asked the Honorable Governor take them into the barracks for better security. Mr. Fox reminded them to be obedient and to follow our advice so that we would not make any complaints about them.

June 10: Br. Grube held the midday festival sermon, as well as the evening service. Afterwards the communicant Brethren, and also some of the baptized and unbaptized people, came into the liturgical room where two old men, who have already for a long time asked for baptism with tears, were baptized in Jesus’ death by Brs. Grube and Schmick. The first received the name Nicodemus and the second Paulus. They have already, a year ago, heard the gospel from Br. David Zeisberger in Machihilusing, came down here last fall with Johannis Pepunhang and lived with us on the island, and since then they have become believers in the Savior. Our dear heart Marshall also went to this blessed act, and many tears were spilled by the baptized and unbaptized.

This morning our dear old Sara, Abraham’s wife, the first among the sisters, went blessedly to the Savior. She was baptized in 1742 by Br. Christian Henrich in Shecomeco, as the blessed Disciple [Zinzendorf] was there and established a conference, thus she was named an Eldress. In 1749, she came with her family to Gnadenhütten to live and had the blessing to be disciple several times. As her husband was made captain of the Indians in Stockbridge, however, and the Nanticokes and Shawnees made a pact with the Brethren,(1) he was seduced away from Gnadenhütten to move to Wajomick, with which our dear Sara was not wholly in agreement. Yet she had to follow her husband, and she came, through this, into bad circumstances. She was glad, however, every time she saw a brother from the Gemeine and always asked to hear something of the Savior. The last words of the old Abraham, before he went home [died], were with her: "You go, as soon as I am dead, back to the Gemeine and ask the Brethren to take you back in and forgive," which she did. She came to Nain a year ago with her daughter and youngest son, and they received permission to live in Weequetank, about which she rejoiced and for which she thanked the Savior. She had, however, no real rest, and she often asked for absolution with tears, which blessing she also took part in. She was also soon readmitted to Abendmahl, bending and ashamed. She was sinner-like and small, and, in our difficult circumstances, she always remained child-like and confident in the Savior. In her sickness she said, I would like to go to the Savior and that will happen on the next Sunday, which then came to pass, and we were warmly thankful to the Savior that he found this first fruit again and made her blessed again through his wounds.

June 11: Our dear Br. Marshall traveled again to Bethlehem. The body of our blessed Sara was brought to rest by Br. Grube in the Potters Field this evening, and, by the grave, he thanked the Savior in a childlike way for the blessed election from the heathen. In the evening, after the service, most of the brothers and sisters came together in the liturgical room for the baptism of our Johannis Pepunghang’s daughter, whom he brought down here this winter from the Susquehanna. She had already asked for baptism several times, because she felt that she could not become blessed without Jesus’ blood, which blessing she received, and she was baptized in Jesus’ blood by Br. Schmick with the name Sophia.

June 14: Br. Schmick brought the two bodies [of the two Indians who died the previous day] to rest in Potters Field in the morning. Renatus was brought, very early, from here to Newtown by the Over and Under Sheriffs, the Prison Keeper, and Br. Schebosch. From there, Br. Schebosch and the Sheriff from Bucks County will bring him to Eastown, where his trial will take place on the 19th.

June 15: Br. Schmick held the early service. After that he traveled with Ludwig Weiss to Bethlehem to be there for Renatus’ trial in Eastown. In the evening, we had a blessed service about today’s Daily Text: Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, etc.(2)

June 16: The little Elisabeth, Lorel’s remaining child, went gently to the Savior. She was born on Province Island and baptized by Br. David Zeisberger. We were glad and thankful, that the Savior took this little orphan to himself so soon. Jacob Weiss visited our sick, and found that three of them have pox. The brethren’s bands [Gesellschaften] were held with blessing.

June 19: Some Indians from the Jerseys came to visit their friends. We had much effort today to resist evil, and if the Savior did not specially support us, one could easily become powerless: because the Foe begins, in all sorts of ways, to bring our Indians into confusion. The bloody dysentery is also quite strong among our Indians.

June 21: Br. Grube celebrated his fiftieth birthday. Job Peep the Indian, who came a few days ago from the Jerseys with several other Indians, received permission from the Honorable Governor to take his wife and daughter with him. He had left them several years ago, and she had stayed with us for a while, but remained mostly dry and unfeeling. Job Chelloway, the Indian who is now in the service of the province, came to visit his wife and child. Our young people gave us much distress today.

June 23: Our dear Br. Schmick came back from Bethlehem today with the happy news that the poor Renatus underwent his trial in Eastown and on June 21st was declared free and innocent by the jury from the false accusations. Our Indians rejoiced greatly and were thankful that Renatus is now free again. Br. Schmick held the evening service and bestowed the greetings from the Brethren in Bethlehem and Renatus in Eastown. Br. and Sr. Neusser came from the city to visit us.

June 25: During the early service, Rahel, Renatus’s youngest sister, fourteen years old, went to the Savior from the pox. She had a sensitive heart and often came to Srs. Grube and Schmick and spoke about her heart. She said: I am a poor child and feel my misery, but the Savior lets me feel his love, I now want to become and remain completely His. In the last band [Gesellschaft], she expressed particularly that she would like to go to the Savior. When Br. Grube visited her during her illness, he asked her if she was well and easy in her heart. She answered, yes, I have nothing that prevents me from going to the Savior, only I would like to see my brother Renatus one more time. She became weak soon thereafter and asked if someone could sing her a little verse and play on the Zitter. This last Elias did, and she received therewith the last blessing. She recovered further and passed eight more days, then she blessedly left. Her sisters Anna Johanna and Christine from Bethlehem were her nurses and now had to keep their quarantine.

Naemi’s girl also came to us, asked for baptism, and said: I will not live long, because my dear Rahel is now gone to the Savior. When she became sick she spoke heartily with me and said, I wish that you might come to the Savior, and let a blessed heart be given to you through baptism, because if you are not washed with Jesus’ blood, you will be lost. Now I do not feel well, and will soon go to the Savior, and now promise me that you will give your whole heart to Him.

June 26: Br. Schmick held the early service and reminded Johannes Pepunhang about his baptismal day today. Variously friendly officers came to see the Indians. In the German newspapers, it said that Renatus was declared innocent by the jurymen in the court in Eastown. We also received news from Bethlehem that our poor Renatus is still in mortal danger of being killed by Pöbel. Josua the younger was promised to Sophia, Pepunhang’s daughter, and, in the evening after the general services, they were married in a special service by Br. Grube.

June 27: Before the evening service Mr. Fox visited us, spoke with our Indians, and reminded them not to go out of the barracks, because he knew there were very many mean people in the city who did not wish us any good. For himself, he wished that they [the Indians] were 1,000 miles from here in safety, only now it was not possible to send them away. We heard also that the people in the city are very unsatisfied that Renatus was set free and acquitted. They would rather have seen that he was killed.

June 28: Ruth, Sem Evans wife, delivered a son. Ludwig, Joel’s 9-year-old son, died of a high fever, and was ...

June 29: buried in the Potters Field by Br. Grube. The little Schmick celebrated her second birthday, and gave the smallest children a Love Feast, by which they were very pleased. Sr. Grube got an attack of high fever. Mr. Schippen, Secretary, and Col. Francis saw our Indians. The sick Adolph asked fervently for the Absolution of his sins, which was given to him yet this evening in the name of the Savior. He then said to Br. Schmick, oh how light my heart now is, a great burden has been taken from me, etc.

June 30: We explained various matters to our people in a special service, particularly about going home [dying], because various of them have let themselves come into reasoning about it. Anton said at last: It is true what our wise brothers say, I know their hearts, and whoever says or thinks something against them, he speaks or thinks against the Savior, and I will have no part of it. Gottlob, Nathanael’s son, got the pox. Because his parents have not themselves had it, the last two to be baptized, old Br. Nicodemus and Peter, volunteered to care for Gottlob. They were placed in a special room on the south side. In the evening, Br. Grube closed this week with a Singstunde. In this month, we have particularly experienced the visits of the Savior, in that he took ten little brown sheep into his arms and had four people buried in his death. May he be thanked 1,000 times by our four poor hearts. The Schmicks and the Grubes.

1. See Gnadenhütten Journal
2. 1 Corinth. 3:16. English translation taken from the King James Version.


Diary of the Indian Gemeine in the barracks in Philadelphia – 1764

July

July 1: This morning our dear old Hannah the Mahican went blessedly to the Savior. She was only sick a few days with dysentery, and no one suspected that she would go home [die] so quickly. She was baptized in 1751 in Pachgatgoch by the blessed Gottlieb Bezold. Came a few years later to Gnadenhütten to live. She had the blessing to go to communion, and followed her blessed and calm course until her end. At midday, Br. Grube preached about today’s daily text: As the Lord Jesus took her on, so she changed in him. Marie, Benigna’s daughter, got the pox. The old Delaware Hanna volunteered to care for her, we gave her a special room on the south side of the barracks. The young Philippus and Abraham behaved very badly.

July 2: Early, Br. Schmick brought the body of our blessed Hanna to rest in Potters Field.

July 4: Before day, Br. Rothe and John Jones brought Renatus from Eastown, he was settled in very quietly. When the Indian brothers and sisters awoke and heard that Renatus was there, they were very glad. They soon came and greeted him warmly. We were thankful to the Savior for the merciful rescue of his life. From the Jerseys, we heard that the old Sara, Jo Peeps wife, is very sick. Br. Rothe visited the Indians in their rooms. In the evening service, which Br. Schmick held, there were a few people from the city again. The young Sara, Abraham’s daughter, lies very sick and asked earnestly for forgiveness, which she has already done several times. The blessing was given to her in the name of the Savior.

July 6: We spoke with our people very earnestly because we heard that many are concerning themselves with damaging stories regarding the Brethren, and that Job Chelloway is said to have been a leader in it.

July 11: This morning four went home [died], namely: Adolph, Levi, Marie, and Abraham, the last two of the pox, which has caused much reflection among our people. We thanked the Savior, however, that he intended such good for these people that he always took one after another into safety. A few young people put us in an awkward situation today, because they went too far from the barracks without our knowledge and could have come into mortal danger by doing so. Adolph’s and Marie’s bodies were buried by Br. Grube in Potters Field this evening.

July 16 [First part of entry omitted]: These past days some of our people made us very uncomfortable because they insisted on going into the wilderness, so we were forced to explain to them the danger and misery in which they would be putting themselves and those they left behind, etc. etc. Salome, Salomon’s widow, went blessedly to the Savior. She came to Nain a few years ago on the occasion of the treaty in Eastown, heard the Gospel there and believed it, and was baptized by Br. Peter in 1761. She was soon thereafter an enjoyer of the body and blood of Jesus, and she followed her course blessedly until her End. She was, with her husband, a joy and a wonder of mercy to us. She had shown much faithfulness and love to the sick in her room, and her blessed man [departed husband] made the agreement with her that she should soon come after him, which then happened. The upcoming Abendmahl was made known to the communicant brothers and sisters.

July 17: In the morning, Priscilla, Nathanael’s wife, went home from the pox, about which we were not comforted. Today Josua and Bathseba were spoken to especially; both are in dangerous circumstances. The two bodies were brought to Potters Field by Br. Schmick towards evening.

July 18: Our dear Elias, Andreas’s son, went to the Savior from the pox. He was very pleased in his sickness and spoke of nothing but the Savior and that he would soon go to Him. A few days before his end, he had the Brothers asked that when his wife should give birth, the child would be baptized, which was promised him and for which he was thankful and said: my dear hour is near, and so the Good Shepherd took him in His arms. He could play prettily on the Zitter, as well as on the Spinet, and passed most of his time here with that. We are very comforted about him.

July 19: His body was brought to rest by Br. Grube. Yesterday Mr. Fox sent another doctor to us to visit the sick. The old Josua and various other Indians asked Job Chelloway to go to the Governor’s secretary in their names to let him know that that they wanted to speak with the Governor themselves.

July 20: [Today] was the most blessed day for our dear, old, blind, sister Thamar, Anton’s mother, because she had the blessing: His eyes, his mouth, the body wounded for us, that we build so firmly, go to see joyfully, and in his presence greet the wounds on hand and foot. In 1750, she was carried by her two sons forty miles from the Susquehanna to Gnadenhütten because she wanted to hear the Word. She was baptized that same year by Br. Martin and afterwards had the blessing of going to communion. She lived in Bethlehem and Nain after the destruction of Gnadenhütten. She had already been blind for several years, but the Savior was thus all the nearer to her. She confessed to Sr. Schmick several times that she had seen the Savior standing before her, giving her His hand and [that He] was very friendly to her. She was also very calm in all circumstances. On our difficult pilgrimage since last fall, she endured much. Fourteen days ago, she became sick with dysentery, which served to be her blessed release. A few minutes before her end, she said to Sr. Esther: Now I feel no more pain, the Savior beckoned me, He will take me to him soon, which then happened under the blessing of Sr. Schmick. Her age was some eighty years. Job Chelloway’s eight-year-old daughter also died from the pox. She came down here last fall with her parents from Machchilusing. The communicants were interviewed for the Abendmahl[.]

July 23: [First part of entry omitted]: After the early service, all the men and women folk came together. We asked to know who it was who wanted to go to the wilderness. The young people said: it is us. The women folk, said, however, where should we go? We stay with the Savior and the Brethren. Br. Schmick went to the Honorable Governor, because he had asked to speak to him about the Indian’s request to speak with him themselves. [Schmick] found him not at home, however, because he had traveled to Lancaster. Jacob Weiss visited our sick.

July 24: Last night three more went home [died], namely: 1) Beata, Joachim’s daughter, who was born in 1756 and baptized by Br. Bader in Bethlehem. She was a dear child and had the Savior very dear. She was always sickly, got the pox and seemed to come through quite okay, [but] at the end she got dysentery also, which exhausted her little body, and thus she went over into the Savior’s arms. 2) Joel, who was mostly blind, was baptized by the blessed Br. Gottlieb Bezold in 1751 in Gnadenhütten, went to communion, lived the last few years in Weequetank, [and] was also sick most of the time. Last fall he retreated with the other brothers and sisters to Nazareth and was afterwards satisfied during our entire difficult pilgrimage. His heart hung on the Savior and at the end he gave himself willingly to help care for the sick. He soon became sick himself, however, and went blessedly and glad with those whom he had served over into the healthy realm. 3) Isaac, Abraham and Sara’s youngest son, was born in 1741 in Gnadenhütten and baptized by Br. Martin Mack. His parents put him in the Macungie School for a few years, but he was given back to his parents because of his sickliness. His parents, to his detriment, took him to the Susquehanna. When, a year ago, his mother came to the Brethren again, she asked for permission for her son to live with the Brethren. He got the pox fourteen days ago, [she?] could not visit him, however, because she had not yet had the pox. We are of the hope that the Savior has taken him to Him out of mercy. After the morning service, Susanna’s little daughter was baptized by Br. Grube and called Martha. This night five of the young people behaved very badly, so that we could sleep very little.

July 28 __ [First part of entry omitted]: Elisabeth, Bartholomew’s wife, bore a daughter, who...

July 30: was baptized by Br. Schmick and called Elisabeth. Little Johanna Schmick was very sick yesterday and today.

July 31: Schebosch went with Job Chelloway and Johannes Pepunhang three miles from here to fish, with permission of the sergeant, and came back home in the evening. And so we closed this month with thanks and joyful tears for the blessed visits of our dear Lord, who took twenty souls out of our midst into his arms. The difficulties that we also had this month we gladly forget when we remember how our friends had to work day and night on our behalf, and gave themselves for us. Amen.


Diary of the Indian Gemeine in the Barracks in Philadelphia, 1764

August

August 1: At the beginning of this month, various young people made our hearts heavy.

August 2: We sent our Diary from last month to Bethlehem. Our dear old Br. Bechtel came here to visit and brought us letters. Mr. Dan. Benezet send us a half cord maple wood for spoons and baskets, which was then soon distributed in the families. Our people were glad that they received work again, which is very healthy for them.

August 7: After the morning service, the little son that Juliana left behind [when she died in the epidemic] was baptized by Br. Grube and called Petrus. He went to his eternal rest soon thereafter.

August 8: Last night, our dear old Erdmuth went over into Jesus’ arms and lap. She was baptized by Br. Nathanael in Gnadenhütten in 1751. She asked to participate in Holy Communion, was a true heart in all temptations. Tediusgund, her daughter’s husband, and her children themselves, spared no effort to pull her from the Savior and the Gemeine. She held herself all the closer to the Savior, however, and said often to her children: Do what you want, but I stay with the Savior and His people. In our recent difficult circumstances, she always had good spirits and left herself completely to the Savior. In the interview before the last Abendmahl she said: I know, and I feel it, that I belong to the Savior with body and soul, he can do what me what he will, I live for Him and I also want to die for Him. Eight days later, she became sick. When one asked her what hurt her, she said: I have no pain, I have only a little heat. She also made her last will and gave the little Augustus, her grandson, to Lucia, who should keep him until he can come to the Gemeine, because she said: He belongs to the Gemeine and otherwise to no one. The Brethren in Bethlehem should also have my things, with that she was very pleased and well. A few days before her end she gave a beautiful prayer before her people and begged the Savior with her heart that He might make all our Indians right blessed, because she had tasted his blood, the Savior should not become tired taking pity on her and forgiving her sins, etc. She always lay still like a lamb, and her heart was with her eternal husband until her end. She received the last blessing with the words: Open arms take her; pale lips kiss her on the heart. And so her most faithful friend took her in his arms and those that were present had a blessed feeling thereby. She was one of our best sisters. Four Indians went out with a soldier to look for herbs.

August 10: Philippina asked for baptism for her sick child, which request was granted to her. Br. Schmick baptized her and gave her the name of Esther.

August 11: She went home [died] and was...

August 13: buried by Br. Schmick. We received letters from England from Br. Broderson, which made us very glad. Nicodemus and Paulus, who have cared for those sick with the pox, have endured their quarantine and came back into their rooms.

August 14: Our little Johanna Schmick became very sick. Br. Schmick went to the Honorable Governor to make the concerns of the Indians known to him. Namely: that they want to be in the wilderness again because they are so sick here. To that the Governor answered that it was now a pure impossibility to let them go to the wilderness, as long as there was war with the Indians; because as soon as there was a deadly attack on the frontier, then they would be given the blame, and he also did not trust all our young people. He also knew of no better place for them than the barracks. Their necessary support and clothing will also still be taken care of. We received a few cords maple wood, which was soon distributed. The men folk began immediately to make spoons in order to earn something.

August 15: Today’s Daily Text was very good for our hearts: He consoled them, and spoke with them in a friendly way. Br. Schmick got a fever and his little daughter was also very sick. The little Anna Rosia, Gottlieb’s and Anna Rosina’s little 1 _ year old daughter, when to the Savior.

August 16: She was buried by Br. Grube. Br. Schmick had to go to the City Hall again. He had the opportunity to speak with the Governor, and to tell him the views of the Indians regarding his last answer, which, however, amazed him, particularly that Pepunhang insisted on speaking with him himself. He did not reject that completely, but he said: If his request is only to go back to the Susquehanna again, then it would be futile that he speak with him, it could not now happen. The Honorable Commissioners behaved very kindly to Br. Schmick and asked him to draft a list of how much clothing, approximately, the Indians need. Today’s Text: before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth (1) was very striking to the heart of the teacher.

August 25: Early, Anna Johanna, Timothy’s wife, went right happily to the Savior. She was baptized, in her eighth year, in 1749, by the blessed Cammerhof. A few years ago, she achieved the blessing of going to Abendmahl. She was married with Timothy. She was very depressed when her Br. Renatus was brought to Philadelphia to prison and when her old father Jacob died. When Renatus was free again, she was very glad; when she saw, however, that he wanted to go his own way again, she spoke often with him and tearfully asked him to surrender himself completely to the Savior, so that he might not bring the Gemeine and the Savior to disgrace and to shame, and it had a good effect on him, because he said afterwards, it is not my intention to become a disgrace to the Savior, but my mind is taken with several things that I’ve heard about our people since I’ve been here. I want to have the Savior very dear and follow him, etc. When her little daughter went home three weeks ago, she got a yearning desire also to go home. She spoke about this with her husband. He said: I’m glad that it is thus for you, but for me it is not so. In the last days before her sickness, she was very pleased and witnessed with every occasion how much she would like to go to the Savior. Seven days ago she became sick, she said immediately, now I will go to the Savior. When the visitors asked her how it was in her heart, she answered, very good, I am very poor, but the Savior is mine and I am His, and so she fell into sleep gently with the blessing of the Gemeine. Because Br. Grube and Br. Schmick were sick, Br. Neusser took care of the burial this evening. This night our little and dear Johanna Maria Schmick was kissed home by the little lamb [died]. She had already been very sick for six weeks and had in her dying life,(2) which lasted fourteen months, experienced quite a bit of this miserable life.

August 27: In the morning, the body of little Johanna Maria Schmick was buried by Br. Neusser in the Brethren’s God’s Acre. Peter, also called Harris, also had the mercy of going home. He was baptized in 1750 by the blessed Cammerhof. He lived a while in Gnadenhütten and attended Abendmahl, and was, as long as his blessed wife Theodora lived, in a very nice path. When she went home, however, and Mahony (3) was soon after destroyed, he reached the Susquehanna and came there into bad circumstances. At the time of the treaty in Eastown he came again to Nain, asked the Brethren for forgiveness and that they might take pity on him again, and one noticed again soon a blessed working in his heart. The Brethren allowed him to live in Weequetank, and he was often on a good trail, but because he did not want to be a sinner, the Savior could not establish much in his heart. When, a year ago, the disturbances of the war began, he was very faithful and watchful, and said: if we can not maintain ourselves here any longer, let us rather go to the Brethren in Nazareth and die there, because we do not want to go back into the wilderness. In his illness he prayed fervently for forgiveness and said, I have used and troubled the Brethren and the Savior very much and have never been just right, I have felt quite well that the Savior and the Brethren meant well with me, but I have always listened to my backwards heart. To his wife he said, you are the reason that I am still with the Brethren, otherwise I would already be long gone. I thank you for your faithfulness and your love, ask also for forgiveness that I have often disturbed you in your blessedness, I go home as a sinner and leave myself on the Savior’s mercy and love, and so he departed with the blessing of the Gemeine. Otherwise, he was a diligent man, a good hunter, and helper of the poor.

August 30: Job Chelloway went with his family away from here to Frankfurt.

August 31: Br. Marshall gave our Indians a small pleasure, giving them 220 ears of green corn, which is a rarity here. Br. Schmick, who has been quite sick recently, found himself a good deal better today. Our hearts are very thankful to the Savior for His repeated merciful visits this month, and that He took eleven souls to himself in peace.

1. Gal., 3:1. English translation taken from the King James Version.
2. Moravian euphemism for one’s life on earth
3. The settlement at Gnadenhütten


Diary of the little Indian Gemeine in the barracks in Philadelphia – 1764

September and October

September 1: Br. Rothe came from Bethlehem with letters from Br. Nathanael, to give us a hand during our sickly circumstances.

September 2 [Symbol for Sunday]: At midday, there was a blessed sermon about the Daily Text: They will set themselves at your feel and will learn from your words, as Marie did. In the afternoon, our dear Brother Marshall took his leave of us and went to Bethlehem. Br. Rothe moved in with us in the barracks and will stay until Br. Schmick is better.

September 3: Br. Rothe held the morning service, and Br. Schmick ventured out a little.

September 8: Br. Schmick visited Mr. Galloway and had the opportunity to tell him that Nain will soon be taken down.

September 10: He [Br. Schmick] went to Mr. Fox and gave him the list of necessary clothing items for the Indians, namely: blankets, shirts, stockings, etc. etc.

September 15: Br. David Zeisberger came from Bethlehem to visit. A few gentlemen from New York and Philadelphia were here to see the Indians. One of them knew Br. Joseph [Spangenberg] and various other Brethren and inquired about them. Among other things, he told us that this midday he was a guest at a merchant’s, where there was a minister present (presumably Whitefield), so someone asked him what he thought of the Moravians, and whether they would also go to heaven? He answered, yes, certainly, they will come rightly above etc. etc. Also, he said that four Indians of those who are in prison in New York have died, and that the others still lie sick.

September 16: Br. David Zeisberger held a blessed sermon and bands with Johannes Pepunhang. Mr. Fox came this afternoon and inquired about a white woman who is supposed to have been here to speak with a few of our Indians, who were to have taken her prisoner six years ago. The Honorable Governor has taken notice of this affair, but as far as we know, however, no such woman has been here. On this occasion, Mr. Fox also had all of the men folk come together and said to them that there was still no peace with the Indians; they should not wander around, but rather stay in the barracks, be obedient, and follow their ministers, which they all promised to do.

September 20: Br. Rothe, who was sent to help us in our sickness, went back to Bethlehem. Seven Jersey Indians, who had been in the market with baskets, visited their friends here, among whom was Mattheus, who lived in the Single Brother’s House for various years and had learned the tailor’s profession; he now associates himself with Mr. Brainard’s Indians. 800 Germans arrived on three ships from Holland, among whom were many mountain people, [who] came in crowds to see the Indians and believed they were gypsies. In the evening service, the misfortune was talked about [that occurs when] people move to the Gemeine, if they make it hard for their [church and choir] workers so that they have to sigh.

September 23: At midday there was a blessed sermon about the ten lepers and their rapid consumption. Very many of the newly-arrived Germans came to see the Indians, among them were various officers over the mountain people, who asked for permission to attend the evening service.

September 30: In the morning, Br. Schmick preached in the Brethren’s church and Grube in the barracks. Our little Lea, the three-year-old daughter that Elias and Susanna left behind, went blessedly to the Savior. She had already ailed for a couple months, and after her father and mother went to the Savior, she long to also, and said: My father and mother left me here and are with the Savior. I must also go there, and ought not to stay here any longer. In this she was inconsolable until she had the luck to receive her last kiss. She was a right dear child. In the evening, Br. Grube held a Society Gathering in the city.

October

October 1: [Today] was Election Day for the Assembly Men. The whole city was full of people from the countryside. The Honorable Governor had the sergeant announce in the barracks [that we should keep] a good watch and let no Indians go out, because they could easily come to harm. It was a calm day however, as well as night, so that we were thankful to the Savior from our hearts.

October 2: Br. Schmick held the early service and mentioned that today is our dear Br. Nathanael’s birthday, wishing him much blessedness. It was very uneasy in the city, the German people are said to be very angry at us.

October 4: Mr. Fox sent 71 blankets for our Indians, as well was linen for shirts, which...

October 5: was distributed, for which they were all very thankful. All the children, including the smallest, were provided with shirts. Some of them were already quite naked and could hardly cover themselves.

October 7: Br. Schmick held a blessed sermon about today’s gospel; various white people listened, as well as in the evening service.

October 9: Br. Schmick celebrated his 51st birthday. The Indian brothers and sisters all came to greet him. Mr. Whitefield came to us in the barracks, inquired when we held our services, and promised to visit us some time. Our sick Nathanael was very weak, but pleased in his heart.

October 14: He had the luck to pass into Jesus’ arms and lap. In 1749 he came the first time to Bethlehem from the Susquehanna to buy something and had the opportunity to attend an Indian baptism, at which his heart was very touched and he long to meet his God and Redeemer and to be washed by His blood, which blessing also soon befell him. He went home soon after and announced to his friends what had happened to him and how much the Savior loved all people. His friends were thus brought into embarrassment and resolved together to go to the Brethren to hear the good Word. They moved to Meniwolagomegok and afterwards to Gnadenhütten. Our Nathanael first had the blessing to go to communion. When the Mahony was destroyed by the Indians, he had the misfortune to be in the wilderness with his wife and children. He went to the Susquehanna and stayed for a while in the wilderness alone, but his wife troubled him until he went to Diago to the savages. He came then into very troubling circumstances. At the time of the Treaties in Eastown he came with his family back to the Brethren and begged for a little place to live with them, which request was granted to him with the Indians in Gnadenthal. He could not, however get any confidence in the Savior, until the Friend of Sinners revealed Himself to him in a very special way, granted him forgiveness for his sins in His blood, and took him into His people again, over which [Nathanael] spilled many tears. He also became a communicant again. Last year he went with Br. David Zeisberger to Machchilusing, preached day and night to the Indians of the martyrdom of our God, and praised in particular the great Friend of Sinner, who had shown himself to [Nathanael] so mercifully. In our recent difficult circumstances, he was cheerful and childlike. This summer he and his wife were sick of the pox, and the latter died of if. He had to endure much. In particular, he lacked the necessary care. He overcame the pox happily, but got the consumption, and then immediately the flu. At the last Abendmahl that he had the good fortune to share in, he took [communion] with many tears and was glad soon to be going to greet the wounds. Otherwise, he was learned, could write German and English, and took particular pleasure in singing. When he went on the hunt, he was never without a book and sometimes forgot his hunting for his learning. A few days before his sickness, Br. Grube held a band with him and several other brothers. He was very sincere and said: for me it is well, and I would like nothing more in the world than to feel the Savior and his wounds. It worries me that my Br. Johannis Pepunhang now plans to go into the wilderness again, because it is quite impossible. For my part, I do not want to go to the wilderness again. This he said with tears in his eyes. Now his desire has been fulfilled, and he rests now in Peace.

October 15: His body was brought to rest in Potters Field by Br. Grube.

October 20: Josua, Johannes Pepunhang, and Sem Evans, an unbaptized person, went to Mr. Allen, the Chief Justice, to speak with him regarding their departure. Almost all our poor people have the intention of leaving, and therefore they work very hard to bring it about yet this fall. We ask them often to have patience and leave it to the direction of the Savior, but it has little effect.

October 27: Our dear Br. Thrane and Sr. Marschall visited us. In the evening, the little Lucus, Carita’s foster son, had the fortune to be kissed home. He was the blessed Beata’s, Zacharai’s wife, last child, and he had ailed most of this summer. His ten siblings all went home young, and he was a very good and patient little sheep. We are very pleased and thankful to the Savior for his release.

October 28 [Symbol for Sunday]: Br. Grube preached about today’s Gospel. In the afternoon, Br. and Sr. Nathanael, Br. Thrane, and Sister Marschall pleased us with their visit and saw our Indians in their homes. [The Indians] were glad to see brothers and sisters from Bethlehem once again. In the evening, our dear Br. Nathanael held a blessed service, and visited us...

October 29: one more time, at which time we spoke with him about our circumstances. The body of our little Lucas was brought to rest by Br. Schmick. We are always glad and thankful when a month is over, and the Savior has mercifully helped us through outwardly and inwardly. His Gemeine will not forget us and lay His little brown flock diligently before His heart.


Diary of the little Indian Gemeine in the Barracks in Philadelphia, 1764

November + December(1)

November 4 [Symbol for Sunday]: At midday Br. Schmick preached. The crowds of city folk were quite strong today.

November 12: Renatus and Marie, Josua’s sister, were married in a special service by Br. Schmick. Sr. Grube also celebrated her 49th birthday and was greeted by all the Indian Sisters warmly.

November 13: In the early service, today’s great day of blessing was brought to mind, and it was recommended to every heart to discuss everything thoroughly with his faithful elder. The old Josua, Joh. Pepunhang, Bartholomeaus, and Josua junior also went to the Susquehanna.(2) They have acquired a Pass from the Honorable Governor without our knowledge and claim to look for a place for future settlement on the Susquehanna. Their main goal however is the hunt. The other young people were very [disappointed?] not to be allowed to go with them.

November 14: Mr. Fox sent us 75 bushels of potatoes.

November 16: We moved a few rooms around because we saw that some of the young people are very harmful to each other.

November 20: Br. Schmick gave the Honorable Governor a petition about our maintenance.

November 21: We heard that Sem Evans and two more of our Indians had Mr. Allen give them a pass to catch mushrooms in the area. He freely gives our people the opportunity to move freely in the city and go everywhere, often with danger for their hearts. We are very perplexed about this, but cannot change it.

November 27: Br. Schebosch went to Bethlehem for his own duties. In the evening, we discovered that more young people wanted to leave, out of annoyance, because the four Indians listed above received permission to go to the Susquehanna.

November 28 and 29: The Daily Texts, which had to do with love for our Martyr-Man, were very striking to us.

December

December 1: The lame Jonathan, who, on our return trip from Amboy had stayed in Princetown to sell his land himself, came and asked to live with us in the barracks.(3)

December 4: News came into the city from Colonel Boquet that he has made peace with the enemy Indians on the other side of the Ohio, which news was very nice for us to hear.

December 6: The Proclamation from the Honorable Governor in the newspaper said that no more hostilities will be committed against the Indians. The city folk soon made this known to our Indians, who were very glad.

December 10: Several sisters came, crying and lamenting their concerns, particularly about going to the wilderness, which would be unendurable for them if no Brethren were to go with them, since their heart’s desire was to ever remain in connection with the Brethren.

December 16 [Symbol for Sunday]: Br. Schmick held the morning sermon and in the evening, Br. Grube held a German meeting. We thanked the Savior, who makes himself known to us so faithfully in all of our services.

December 18: Srs. Grube and Schmick visited Mrs. Benezet, which pleased her. She held a Heart-Band with them. Her only concern in the world is to know her redeemer better every day, and also to come into a closer connection with the Savior’s people.

December 20: Three men visited us, one of them was a prisoner among the Delaware Indians for eighteen months and was delivered to Col. Boquet a month ago. He could speak Indian quite well and told us that the Delaware and Schawan [Shawnee] Indians have not had any shortage of food, nor of powder and lead, besides clothing. He believed that it was right to make peace with the Delaware, but the Shawnee were false. This afternoon, Josua Sen., Pepunhang, Bartholomeaus, and Josua junior came back, in the company of Mr. Apty from Fort Allen. The first two were very high up on the Susquehanna. In Machchilusing, Pepunhang’s town, they met no more Indians, rather, most everything is destroyed. The Indians from the six nations wreaked havoc on the Susquehanna last summer, mowed down the corn, and spoiled things: shot the cattle and burned many small towns of Delaware and Mennisingen Indians. A few they killed and cut into pieces. The Indians up there are said to have spent the summer in the greatest confusion and fear. And it seems as if soon a war would break out among the Indians. Josua said to this: "We had thought that we had it very hard during the time here in the barracks, only it is no comparison with that with the Indians in the wilderness have suffered, and we recognize now that the Savior himself directed our circumstances, as the Brethren often said." Now they think they will move to the Susquehanna next spring, apparently a few to Machchilusing, but others a few miles above Wajomick.

December 24: Job Chelloway the Indian moved from here to Fort Allen with his wife and two children. At the same time Christian and Thomas, Justina’s son, went with him without our knowledge. The latter had received a pass from Mr. Allen. In the evening, Br. Schmick held a pleasing Love Feast with the children, at which everyone rejoiced over the newborn baby Jesus. Lastly, little lights were distributed which they took burning to their rooms. Afterwards the adults had their night watch and Love Feast, and the most beloved Jesus made his nearness felt right strongly. We thanked Him with many tears on our knees for his inexpressible Love and human incarnation.

December 25: Br. Schmick held a blessed festival sermon. There was today an especially blessed peace of God to be felt among our people.

December 27: After the morning service was the quarter-hour service for the communicants and...

December 28: the interviews [for the upcoming Abendmahl]. We could be glad over the work of the dear mother [the Holy Spirit]. A few felt their poverty and misery especially. Other were perplexed because they are not constantly in connection with the Savior, and others cling tightly to becoming known to the bloody Martyr Man and always living in his merit. Josua and Bathseba, who for quite a while have not gone with to Abendmahl, were also very sinner like and asked ardently to enjoy the Great Thing.

December 29: The Communion Agape was after the evening service. Afterwards there was a very comforting Absolution and a very blessed Abendmahl. The communicants were Anton and Johanna, Josua and Bathseba, Bartholomeaus and Elisabeth, Gottlieb and A[nna] Rosina, Schebosch and Christina, Joachim and Benigna, Marcus, Josua jun, Philippus, Lucia, Esther, Martel, Hanna, Marie, Naemi, and Agnes. The Fiend was everywhere very busy trying to disturb us in our plans, only he could not succeed.

December 31: We closed this so remarkable year with our eyes full of tears over the Recapitulation of all the special mercies visited upon us by our Lord, the striking blessings, the protection of our dear Father, and the unending motherly care of the Holy Spirit.

1. "December" written in pencil.
2. It is unclear if by "also" the writer intended that these Indians followed others who had already gone west, or if this departure was simply another thing that happened on November 13.
3. See entry for January 20, 1764.

 

Notable events in the year 1764

January 3: The particularly blessed communion on Province Island.

January 5: In the night at 1 o’clock our departure for Amboy. The very warm welcome into the Philadelphia Brethren’s House with a Love Feast.

Our journey in the company of seventy Scots [soldiers]. The visit of Br. Nathanael and Anna Johanna in Amboy.

The counter order of the Governor in New York when we were to go on the ships.

Our happy return trip in the company of 170 of the king’s soldiers, who came from Niagara.

The particular protection of our dear heavenly father on the ice at Brunswick.

January 24: Our happy arrival in the barracks at Philadelphia.

In the beginning of February, it was very troubled. Remarkable to us was the Daily Text of the fourth, as the soldiers prepared the defense. Ye shall not shout, nor make any noise with your voice, etc.(1) This night was one of the hardest.

February 6: we were strikingly comforted with the Daily Text: for there is no restraint to the Lord to save by many or by few.(2) and

February 7: It was: Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.(3) Oh now let him continue to do so.

In May was the beginning of our sickness.

The blessed work of the Holy Spirit on the sick.

Most of the Brethren’s special joy and desire to go to the Savior.

Br. and Sr. Grube and Schmick’s dangerous illness, and little Johanna Schmick’s home going.

Renatus’s being set free on June 21.

6 were born this year.

12 Baptized, namely: 6 children and 6 adults

Married: 2 pairs

Gone home: 56, namely: 21 children and 35 adults, including the two first fruits of the heathen Gemeine in North America, Jacob and Sara.

The Lord’s Supper was held seven times. The wonder and the blessings that He did for His poor brown people this year are not to be described. May thanks ever and ever be brought to the Lamb, who exudes all that is good with his blood.

1. Josua 6:10. English translation taken from the King James Version.
2. 1 Sam. 14:6. English translation taken from the King James Version.
3. 1 Sam. 7:12. English translation taken from the King James Version.

 

Introduction, transcription and translation by Katherine Carté Engel

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Updated: 19 January 2006

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