Philander Chase



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Details of the voyage to England, prayers to bless his family




On Board the Orbit


England voyage, Orbit, Ireland, Philander Chase Jr., Mary Chase


My dear Wife,

I write this in my dark stale room on board the Packet ship Orbit on the 29th of Oct 1823 about 40 miles from Holy Head and, say, 100 mi from Liverpool. The coast of Ireland has been visible to us for the most part, ever since we passed Cape Clear. The Hills and the cliffs in varied and beautiful succession have risen to cheer us by day, and in Lighthouses like stars in the distance and tremulous [horizon] have sparked in our eyes and deprived the night watch of half its gloom and terror. How often, as I have remained on Deck after, long after, all the passengers had turned in to dose away to them the tedious moments have I thought on you and the dear Babes sleeping at your side. Almighty God, Saviour of our fallen race, who hearest the prayers of the poor and destitute, in mercy visit protect and bless my dear wife and Children! Let them partake of the crumbs which fall from thy table and it shall suffice! Be more merciful to us than man has been or we perish!

My dear wife - the tears which now flow and scarcely have ceased to flow, down my careworn cheeck witness the sincerity of my prayer, as I have supplicated for you for poor sick Philander and for all my dear Friends left in my native country.

We have had a long and stormy passage emblematical of my whole life. But God has overruled, I hope, in both cases for good. As now, so at the close of the voyage of life may the prophets brighten [of] a blessed Haven of rest.

Last Sunday, a week ago, we were visited with a gale amounting to almost a tempest. At such a time how precious the promises in Jesus Christ! How they fix and settle the soul, and take even from Death his terrors! - I know not how it is; but the troubles I have lately met with have seemed to reconcile me more than at any former period of my life to the will of God should it please Him to call me from this to the eternal world yet. Sure I am that I do not love the Church of Christ nor my relatives and friends [?] the less on this are! NO - they are dearer to me than ever: and my prayers for their happiness were never so fervent. But it seems I am not needed - my best endeavours turn to little good purpose. I am opposed as an evil door where I thought I was serving most effectually the will of my Sav. This is to remind me of my frailty, my weakness, my nothingness. I therefore would submit. Thy will, not mine, O God be done! And though [?] by death, ‘thy will O Heavenly father, be done!’ Amen.

You will be gratified to learn that, as it respects things aboard our passage has been most agreeable. The Capt. has been kind to us beyond example and all the passengers have conspired to make each other as happy as possible. This is saying much more than can usually be said.

We have had divine service every Sunday and grace before and after meat. May God add his blessing to these means.

Kiss the Children then thousand times for their fond father. Make Dudley read the Lessons from Holy Scripture every day night and [?] and to learn the collects. He my dear Boy I hope will learn to read and to say his prayers. Don’t let Mary forget me. My love and duty to Dear Mother. To Brothers and sisters say every thing that is tender from me. Don’t forget to mention me respectfully to the Rev. Mr. Gorman.

P. Chase

Letter to Sophia Chase



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