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youth. Such a change might introduce a new and glorious era in the history of colleges, and in the moral sentiments of educated men generally.”

SKETCH OF ROCHESTER, N. Y. SABBATH SCHOOLS.

Some friend has furnished us with a copy of the Rochester, N. Y. Daily Democrat, and called our attention to an address, containing a “ Sketch of the Sabbath schools” in that city. The following abridgement will be read with interest.

In the summer of 1818, the first spark of Sabbath school fire was kindled in Rochester-then containing a population of five or six hundred souls, and among them probably not over forty or fifty children, that were then thought to be of suitable age to attend school. But the older cities and towns at the east had begun the work of Sabbath school instruction, and Rochester, although in its infancy, must not be behind. A few of those choice spirits that are always forward in every good work; yes, the young ladies of Rochester, were the pioneers to begin this noble work, the result of which we, their successors, have met this evening to review. But who is competent to the task? Who can follow the little stream just emerging from the fountain, until it reaches the broad ocean? Who can set forth the value of instruction given from Sabbath to Sabbath for more than a quarter of a century? The results can never be known until time shall have

an end.

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At length the time had come when it was announced from the pulpit that a Sabbath school would be held; but on account of three uncommonly rainy Sabbaths, it was not organized until the fourth, and had we been present, we might have seen here and there, a child (for in those days groups were rarely to be seen) emerging from the woods, where now run Sophia, Washington and Ann streets on the west, and St. Paul and Clinton, on the east, wending their way to the

1846.]

Sketch of Rochester Sabbath Schools.

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Presbyterian church in State street, now used as a blacksmith shop. This was a moment of deep interest. However, it was the determination to go forward; and in the language of the immortal Raikes, “ try to have a school.” In the summer of 1818, the effort was made, the work begun, and in a few weeks it was removed to the school house, a small wooden building on the ground now occupied by School House, No. 1. Let me give you a view of this first Sabbath school room : the seats were made of oak slabs, accommodating the small classes, while the higher classes were seated upon the desks ; as for the teachers, no seats were to be found for them.

We had then no class nor library books. A few red and blue tickets were awarded to those whose recitations were perfect. With such facilities for improvement, it is not surprising that the school should be like a summer flower. During the brief period of its existence, it numbered from 30 to 40 scholars. The school was kept up during the summers of 1819, '20 and '21, but continued to decline, and was deserted by nearly all its first founders. Of the eight teachers who composed the school arıny of Rochester, Ebenezer Bliss died at one of the Indian missions, Rev. Jonathan Green and Mrs. Delia Bishop have for many years been connected with the Sandwich Island mission; another is still superintendent of a school in Rochester.

In the spring of 1822, Rev. Mr. Osgood, the apostle of Sabbath schools, came among us, and formed the Rochester Sabbath School Union. Four schools were commenced. For a short time the schools were prosperous, but having to rely principally upon teachers that felt but little interest, they soon ceased to exist. In 1823, Mr. Osgood made us another visit, the Union was again in the field, and four schools begun. During the summer the Union was abandoned ; two Presbyterian schools formed ; also one in St. Luke's church, and one in the Methodist church, on St. Paul's street. In the month of November, a public examination of the two schools was held in the Presbyterian church, and premiums of books awarded to those who had made the most progress in reciting ; which, in some instances, amounted to from fifteen to eighteen hundred verses. After the premiums were distributed, the schools went into winter quarters.

In 1824, the First Baptist Sabbath school was formed, and held in the Court House.

In 1825, four schools were kept through the year. The S. S. Concert was commenced in May; the Monroe County S. S. Union and Depository was organized in August, under the instrumentality of the Rev. George G. Sill, and a small fund raised for the purchase of books, which at that time were very rare, and probably not fifty volumes could be found that would now be considered suitable for a Sabbath school library. We have now brought our brief history down to a period ever to be remembered in the annals of Rochester Sabbath schools, a foundation having been laid for succeeding generations to finish. In the summer of 1826, the Lord raised up the ever to be remembered Josiah Bissell, Jr., who in the short period of his labors, did more to advance the cause of Sabbath schools, than any other man that has labored in Western New York. He took charge of the school of the first Presbyterian church, and through his instrumentality a revival of religion soon commenced, which resulted in the conversion of several teachers and scholars. The Sabbath school of the 2d Presbyterian church was organized in the summer of 1826, numbering about 30 scholars. In the September of this year, the first Sabbath school celebration of the Monroe County Union was held. A procession formed on Washington Square, and marched from thence to the Court House Square, where addresses were delivered to the teachers and scholars that had come in from the towns in the county, to the number of 762.

In 1827 the Sabbath school of the 3d Presbyterian church, and the African school were formed. In '31 the Free Church school ; in '34 the 1846.]

Sketch of Rochester Sabbath Schools.

237

2d Baptist school ; in '36 the Washington street school, and in '39 the State street school and the school at Hanford's Landing were commenced. Several other schools have been in operation in different school districts.

In 1833 was formed the Rochester Sabbath School Union, embracing the Presbyterian, Baptist, Free and African schools.

The doings of the Association from that time to the present, are familiar to most teachers, and from year to year, as the several schools bave presented their reports, we have listened to them with the most intense interest. As a part of the results of the Sabbath school labors for the last 20 years, 1,073 teachers and scholars have united with the Presbyterian and Baptist churches, besides a large number that have been received into the Episcopal and Methodist churches. In addition, there have been several hundred reported conversions, that have doubtless united with churches in other parts of our land.

Rochester Sabbath schools have sent forth among the heathen, the following missionaries and assistants : Ebenezer Bliss, to the Choctaw Indians; Rev. Jonathan Green, Rev. T. Dwight Hunt, Edwin 0. Hall, Mrs. Delia Bishop, and Mrs. Fidelia Coan, to the Sandwich Islands ; Mr. E. A. Webster, Rev. Alanson Hall, Rev. Ferdinand D. Ward, Rev. Henry Cherry, and Rev. Mr. Lockwood, to India ; Mrs. Julia Johnson to Siam ; Dr. Henry DeForest and Mrs. Caroline DeForest, and Mrs. Marian W. Smith to Syria, and Rev. Grover S. Comstock to Burmah. As many, and perhaps more, are now preaching the gospel in our own beloved land, and hundreds of teachers and scholars have gone out from us, that are now engaged as teachers in various parts of our country, and who can estimate the value of their self-denying labors ? From one humble, devoted teacher, who has long since rested from his labors, we have the testiinony that he was instrumental in the conversion of more than forty souls, and this is but one item in the glorious results that will be made manifest before an assembled universe ; and can there be a teacher, as he contemplates the past, and looks forward to the future, but will buckle on anew bis armor, and go forth to his field of labor, resolving that the spirit that actuated Robert Raikes in opening the little stream, shall dwell in his heart until it shall make glad the city of God.”

[From our Correspondent.]

LIVES OF THE CHIEF FATHERS OF NEW ENGLAND.

Rev. Asa BULLARD,—My dear sir :-THE MASSACHUSETTS SABBATH School Society has peculiar claims upon the affectionate regards of all those who love the distinguishing characteristics of good old New England Congregationalism, for the blessed work in which that society is engaged, in defending the principles and the men who "earnestly contended for the faith once delivered to the saints,” and through whose instrumentality, that faith in its purity was planted on these shores. A faithful delineation of the character and private life of such men as Mathers, Cotton, Shepard, Norton, Wilson, Davenport, and others of kindred spirit, emphatically “princes and great men in Israel,” will supply a want that has long been felt by those who wish the rising generation to be trained under the hallowed influence of a pure Christianity. Such a portraiture we have in the volumes lately issued by your Society, on the character of the early fathers of New England. I have given them a careful examination, and there is nothing issued by the Massachusetts, or any any other Sabbath School Society, so far as my knowledge extends, which is calculated to give the young so correct an impression of the sacrifice and sufferings necessary to plant our Puritan institutions.

If our Sabbath school literature could be all baptized with the spirit that marks your late publications, there would be little danger that our children and youth would be led astray

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