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Howard believes that he should be the right man toaccompany Chase back to America, and he will visit the West Indes on his return to England. Though his health has been failing for about 7 years, travelling has often been beneficial to him.




Derby, England


England voyage, Josiah Pratt, Reverend Thomason, Cambridge


St. Michael’s Vicarage Derby

Feb 19. 1824

Right Reverend and Dear Sir,

Altho’ I was most certainly not intentionally trifling with you, when talking about accompanying you on your return to America, yet I had not so truly realized the idea, or so fully braced myself to the purpose; but that your deliberate approbation of it, by your letter received yesterday, and your proposal for taking means for carrying it into actual fulfillment, encited much agitation in my bosom. I had no, I believed considered the design to be one of so probable accomplishment, as to have either dwelt so much upon it, in my own thoughts, or committed it, in prayer to God, with so much fervency and constancy, as I ought to have done. The matter stood thus: the representation you gave of the dearth of ministers in the Western Territories excited a [?] wish to add on to their number. And the transplantation which you only playfully perhaps lacked of - of a body of as English clergy, into those parts, [increased] my interest in the matter. A little reflection, however, on my own infirm constitution and the delicate state of my dear wife’s health, besides various other considerations, both personal and family soon imposed the futility of my visionary project. But a temporary residence in America and a visit to the W. Indes might be attended with many advantages and escape some of the [insufferable] objections to the other plan. You observe “you see so many things good growing out of its full completion that you sincerely pray the plans may be carried into effect” and request my permission to communicate with Mr. Pratt on the subject by letter. This is extremely gratifying to me, and I cannot have any sort of objection to it, if you think good to do so, after the representation I will beg to give you of my present feelings: which if you please I must do at the more length from the brevity of our conversation, when I had the pleasure of seeing you.

That the journey of a person duly qualified, to the United States of America and the back settlements and to the West Indes, would, with the blessing of God, lend to the advancement of the interests of religion. I seem to have no doubt. But as to my being duly qualified (I Have when I think now about it) very considerable doubts indeed. I could not however scruple to speak of myself and my circumstances, very [?]ly.

For some years past (about 7) I have been suffering under a dreadfully harmful disorder, which has, as I mentioned, obliged me to employ a curate. But the complaint has been subsiding and my general health improving for the last two years. And with this improvement of health I have desired to devote my prolonged life, and restored ability more [strongly] to the service of my God, in promoting, with His blessing, the establishment of the kingdom of the Messiah. I have not yet dared to give up my curate, tho’ able now to divide the duty with him, besides officiating at the Infirmary and being pretty fully employed with parochial duties, the business of religs societies, and the education of my own children. My heart has all along been towards missionary employment. And I have felt and do feel a very warm desire to accompany you on yr. return to America and to visit the W. Indes on my way home.

But am I a fit person for such a mission? Or if so, can the means be roused for enabling me to enter on it? My advantages of education, under the Rev. W. Thomason of Calcutta [?] to my going to the University of Cambridge ever considerable, but were not duly improved, so that my talents being of the order of mediocrity, my information is by no means extensive, [?] I have but little pretensions to learning. My fort, I conceive to be in actual business and in selling other people to work in religious matters. Travelling is always beneficial to my health and a sea-voyage has frequently been recommended by my medical advisors. So that much of the apprehension on this account, [?] my lat. state cod naturally cause to be entertained, I trust, may be removed.

But the chief impediment seems to be, that I believe I shd be ready to go if I even sent, and the way seemed, in God’s Providence, clear before me. Yet as the expense would be considerable, I think there would scarcely be [?] individuals ready to meet it, unless they had the prospect of employing an agent now calculated to derive the greatest advantage from the mission that I can believe myself to be. And all I cd do wd be to give my time and excisions: and indeed it would require a little consideration whether the loss I shd incur of my ecclesiastical income would not render it necessary that some facility should be afforded to my wife, in carrying on, by means of [?], the education of our children, to supply my own instructions.

If, however, on the whole, it seems to you that such an one as I, shd by pursuing the course you are chalking out, be likely to be serviceable to the Church and instrumental in promoting the glory of God, I will beg you to communicate these sentiments to Mr. Pratt, and if Mr. Pratt thinks there is any probability of the plan being adopted, I should be glad if he would write to me without loss of time, because in that case, I would propose, if all be well meeting you at Hull, where I have been intimating going shorty, with the [?] of visiting a pious and venerable Aunt, to whose prayers and instructions, as I think I mentioned to you, I believe I owe under God, the dawning of religion in my own soul, and whose advice in the present instance I shd naturally seek, if I am likely to go with you. Indeed should you be at Hull before me: you are quite at liberty to communicate my views of this subject to her.

Mrs. Howard and my children beg to join me in affectionate respects. Should you come again this way, Mrs. H would much enjoy meeting you.

Right Reverend and Dear Sir

With respect and much affection

Your faithful friend and servant

I.G. Howard

Right Revd Sir

I cannot allow my husband’s letter to be closed without expressing in my own hand my Christian regards. And of saying how much I should enjoy the privelege of again seeing you under our Roof. I am Right Revd Sir

Your faithful Servant

Charlotte Howard

Letter to Philander Chase



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