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Title: A short account of the extraordinary life and travels of H. L. L. - native of St. Domingo, now a prisoner of war at Ashbourn, in Derbyshire
Author: H. L. L.
Language: English
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*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A short account of the extraordinary life and travels of H. L. L. - native of St. Domingo, now a prisoner of war at Ashbourn, in Derbyshire" ***

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Shewing the Remarkable steps of Divine Providence towards
him, and the means of his Conversion to GOD.

    Naked came I out of my Mother's womb, and naked shall I return
    thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; Blessed be
    the name of the LORD. Job. chap. 1 ver. 21 Thy Righteousness is
    like the great mountains; thy judgment are a great deep: O LORD,
    thou preservest Man and Beast. Psalm. Chap. 36 ver. 6.




_Price One Shilling._


It is not doubtful, (_as it is a common method in this world_,) that
my life, and all what is contained therein, will be contradicted and
criticised; but as it hath pleased GOD to reveal unto me the mystery
of the way of the truth, (_of which I hope I am not ignorant_;)
therefore I expect persecutions, contradictions, and criticism to take
place; knowing, that whosoever will live according to the Gospel of
CHRIST, must while in this vale of tears go through much sufferings
and pains: for thus is the road that leads to everlasting happiness.
Therefore let every true born soul know, that as our SAVIOUR suffered
for us: so must we in return for the blessing of Redemption, suffer
for his sake, _for unto us it is given, in the behalf of CHRIST, not
only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake. phi. chap. 1.
ver. 29_. I therefore leave to the public to say what they please of
this book; but the GOD in whom I have trusted shall be the judge of

Finally, the decisive day of our LORD, will put a determination to all
our works, whether they be acceptable, or not.


In reading this little work, (_not only to read but to meditate_,) you
will see the great disappointments that there is in those things,
[_the riches of this world_.] which men put their trust. Oh! reader,
art thou of that unhappy number? if thou art, delay no longer, but go
to JESUS CHRIST, who is the fountain of durable riches, and take with
thee the words of the _Poët_? "whom have I in heaven but thee that can
thy creature bless? what were all the Earth to me, if a stranger to
thy peace? all is vanity but CHRIST, pain and darkness, and dispair,
rankling in a sinner's breast, till thou art present there." Art thou
in prosperity, be Joyful, and praise thy GOD; art thou in adversity,
consider: for GOD hath set the one over against the other, to the end
that man should find nothing after him. Be not as those, which through
weakness of faith, dare not trust their GOD, whensoever in poverty or
distress; for I never knew of any that trusted in GOD, and were yet
confounded; He surely will supply the wants of all those who being
sensible of their sins, groan after him: and lo, (_says CHRIST_) I am
with you alway, even unto the end of the world.

Read, and read again this book, that thou mightest know, that
wheresoever GOD hath a child, there will his eyes be, and that to
protect him; though he may run to a certain degree of sins and
wickedness, but at last He will snatch him as a bran from the eternal
burning, and let him know, that it is not of him that willeth, nor of
him that runneth, but of his good pleasure to shew mercy. "Oh! had not
GOD shown his mercy to me, where should I have been? in the broad road
that leads to everlasting misery, yea in the dark and dolesome dungeon
of dispair, without a glimmering ray of hope; everlastingly bewailing
my miserable destiny." See how the words of the holy prophet prove
true to my case; "I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am
found of them that sought me not."

Oh! if ever I am so happy as to reach within a blessed view of the
happy possession of saints, what a debtor shall I be to mercy and free
grace alone; to save such an ungovernable and unwilling creature as I:
"Oh! my soul it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks[1]! thou,
who hast so long despised, rejected, and set at nought the
commandments of GOD, art now through thy SAVIOUR'S obedience and blood
brought to know the way of Salvation."

          [1] I allude this passage to a Ship going straightways
          against the wind; for it is no more in the power of a sinner
          to resist the will and mercies of GOD, than it is possible
          for a Ship to go straightways against the wind.

Dear reader, art thou a blasphemer, or a despiser of the words of GOD?
if thou art, I will advise thee to take a warning in reading my case,
and to consider about it, for fear thou shouldest be plunged for ever
into eternal misery. Delay no longer to open thy case before the
merciful GOD, though it should be ever so desperate; for He is
all-sufficient, yea all-powerful, to plead the cause of thine immortal
soul, and to bring to pass whatsoever thou shalt commit into his
hands, for He ever liveth to make intercession for sensible[2]
sinners, and to brighten their evidences for the approaching of a
future and everlasting Glory.

          [2] Remember, that GOD makes us sensible that we are

Didst thou ever read, or hear mentioned, of the compassionate
invitation of our blessed SAVIOUR when He lived on Earth; where He
saith, "him that cometh to me (_believing_) I will in no wise cast
out, but I will raise him up at the last day." Perhaps thou say'st in
thine own heart, CHRIST is no more upon the Earth that I might go to
him. Knowest thou not faithless man or woman, that though CHRIST is no
more upon the Earth, that He is the same yesterday, to day, and for
ever; and hath the same power to save and to bring to heaven whom He
will: and now that He is in his holy mansion, is He not still the
same? yea, He is still entreating his Father on our behalf, and his
bowels are always melting in mercy towards us his rebellious Children;
and his most precious arms and pierced hands, which we ourselves have
crucified, are always extended to receive prodigals and backsliders
home: for I am (_says CHRIST_) the friend of sinners, I eateth and
drinketh with them; therefore let him that is athirst come, and take
of the water of life freely.

    _Oh! reader, whoever thou art, I pray GOD through Grace, that
    thou and I, might be of that happy and highly favoured number,
    that shall sing above with the innumerable legions of blessed
    Angels, the chorus of the victory of a wounded and suffering
    SAVIOUR. AMEN. H. L. L._


    Ever since the GOD of truth was pleased to open my blind eyes, and
    Lead me to the knowledge of the truth, I have often meditated upon
    my Life past, and how the divine providence of GOD, has delivered,
    and preserved, such a worthless creature as I out of divers
    dangers: I therefore think it proper and useful to take my pen,
    and give a short account of my Life, and my calling to the
    knowledge of the true and living GOD, hoping that by the Blessing
    of the Eternal JEHOVAH, it may be made useful to those who Love to
    meditate upon the mysterious ways of the wonder working GOD.

I was born in the once proud and haughty Island of _St. Domingo_, in
the Parish of _St. Rose_, of Ancient and respectable parents. My
Father and Mother, were the most accomplished union according to their
Religion and ways of worshiping; they were equal in fortune, for they
had each a plantation, when united together made them an exceeding
good livelihood.

But I have not taken my pen for to write my parents History, but my
own: here then my narration shall begin. In the year one thousand
seven-hundred and eighty-three, the Sixth of September, betwixt eight
and nine o'Clock in the morning I was brought forth into a World of
troubles, and was baptised the twenty-fourth of November in the same
year, by _Father Julien Capuchin Missionary Curate_; and had for
God-father my Mother's Brother, and for God-mother my Father's Sister.

From the day that I was born, I never enjoyed a good state of health;
for I was so weak and Sickly, that I looked more like a Spectre than a
human creature; for my Death was daily and Hourly expected, in me was
seen the very picture of Death: I was in that situation till I
attained my seventh year; when I was forced to leave a Mother by whom
I was dearly loved, and a Father that cherished me above all earthly

For one Morning I yet very well remember, (_though I did not expect
it_,) my Father called me and my two eldest Brothers also, and lead us
into my Mother's chamber, where I saw her weeping bitterly: when there
I could not help asking her what was the matter that she was crying
so; she made no reply but by sighs and tears; when in a sympathetic
manner she took me up in her arms and pressed me with tenderness to
her bosom and bedewed my innocent face with tears; it was with great
difficulty that she consented to let me go; and then she kissed my
Brothers in the like manner, when we left her to sooth her sorrows,
and to console herself to the loss: in the mean time my Father handed
us into our coach, and gave orders to drive away to Town.

I was some time silent, effected by this sudden change; when looking
through the window of the coach, I saw both my little Sisters
stretching out their arms as if it were to bid me the last Adieu; the
scene was so affecting, that I could not restrain myself but to ask my
Father where we were going to; (_for I did not know any thing about
that sudden journey_.) He satisfied me, by saying, that he was sending
us into _France_ for our education, and that he would spare no expence
to give us a good one.

In the afternoon we reached the Town, and alighted at the Crown-Hotel:
my Father being not well in health, we were obliged to delay our
voyage for the space of three weeks; and when the appointed time was
come to separate us from a Father dear and tender, I was taken very
ill, in which state I remained for some days; at the same time the
Captain of the Ship came to let my Father know that he could not wait
any longer, and that he was to weigh Anchor the next day. My Father,
though very ill, said, "well, they shall be ready to go with you
to-morrow." (_I was then but indifferent in health._)

The most affecting parting took place, he took us by the hand and led
us to the Sea-side where we were to embark, and said, in the most
pathetic manner.--"My most beloved Children! the time is now come that
you must be parted from a Father, by whom you are dearly loved;
receive for the last time from my almost dead lips, the pledge and
tenderness of my love towards you; for I know I shall never live to
see you again, so take the last parting of your Father, for you shall
never see him any more; to day is the last time that you will behold
the Author of your days: my duty forced me to send you into _France_,
and your education will be a friend to you when in distress."

Before we parted he recommended us to a gentleman that was on board,
and that nothing should be wanted for our care. And then he withdrew,
extending his arms once more towards us in the most distressing
manner: so that we were filled with grief and sorrow to see our Father
in such a melancholy state.

We begun our course with a fair wind and good weather, which continued
for several days.

About twenty days after we were upon the Sea, the wind rose with such
violence, that we expected every instant to be cast into the depth of
the Ocean: we was in that situation for a considerable time, till at
last it pleased the ALMIGHTY to appease the waves, and to send fair
weather. We were seventy-two days in crossing the immense Ocean, at
the end of which we landed at _Bordeaux_. Myself and my Brothers were
received with great kindness by our Banker, to whom we delivered the
letter concerning our coming into _France_.

The next day we were sent to school in the same Town, to give us the
first beginning of education before we could go to College.

Three months after we were arrived in _France_, we received a letter
sealed in black from our Mother, in which the Death of our Father was
confirmed: his last parting from this World is too cutting to relate.
("_I hope he died happy, and hope to meet him in Glory._")

Though I was so young, the impression of the Death of my Father
plunged me into such a melancholy state, that soon after I was seized
with a violent fever; no rest was to be found for a long while: in the
strongest of my pain I used to get out of my bed and run about the
chamber like a madman, crying out, "Oh! my Father! my Father is no
more." I was in that state for six months, before my health was

As my Father's desire was to give us a good education, he told my
Mother when on his Death-bed, that we must be removed as soon as
possible to the College: accordingly we were sent into the South of
_France_, at the distance of two-hundred and twenty miles from
_Bordeaux_, to the College of _Soreze_, one of the most eminent places
of teaching that ever existed since the World began; for every thing,
consisting of Arts and Sciences was to be learned.

Here is an account of what the College consisted. Teaching Masters,
ninety; besides ten prefects to maintain the police into the yards:
and twelve-hundred scholars. Instruments of Music of all sorts to be
learned; Latin, Greek, German, Spanish, English, Italian, and French
tongues to be learned; Writing of different sorts; Reading,
Arithmetic; Drawing of all kinds, both of Human-likeness, as also the
Landscape: Dancing, both French and English; Ancient History,
Chronology, Literature, Declamation, Fortification, Structure, Poesy,
Rhetoric, Philosophy, Natural History, Geometry, Geography,
Trigonometry, Statics, Fencing, Riding, Military Exercise, Natation,
Architecture, Algebra, Mythology, Theology, Cosmography, &c.

I took such a delight in learning, that all my Masters were pleased
with my conduct; but this did not last long, for one evening the
Director of the College called me and my Brothers, and said, "here is
a letter from your Mother that I have just received." On opening the
letter I saw these words.

_My most beloved Children, it is with grief and sorrow, that I took
the pen to inform you of all the misfortunes which have destroyed St.
Domingo; your fortune[3] is lost for ever, it is only in your
Education, that you will be able to recover it: my long silence would
perhaps make you think that I have perished among so many Victims
which were destroyed in that unhappy Island, no! the LORD was pleased
to save me from so many dangers, that I might be useful again to you;
and I hope that by his Mighty Power, He will restore you again to the
bosom of a languishing Mother, whose arms are always open to receive
your tender embraces._

          [3] Behold, He taketh away, who can hinder him? who will say
          unto him, what doest thou? Job. chap. 9. ver. 12.

_My dear Children, I can hardly hold my pen to inform you of the
gloomy and unhappy end of both your Sisters; they are no more! poison
has put them into the grave: for all the springs and wells were
poisoned, by which perished many others also. Your Uncle and Aunt
P.---- with their Children, in number thirteen, had their heads cut
off upon a block in less than half-an-hour. Your Uncle V.---- was cut
to pieces upon an hedge[4]. A great many of your relations I need not
mention, perished in the most cruel manner: the magnificent City of_
du Cap-Francais _is burnt down to ashes by the Negroes; no more for
the present Adieu, Adieu, Adieu; my poor unfortunate Children, Adieu.
M. L. F. M. L._

          [4] Being Persued by the Negroes, and as he was escaping
          over an hedge, his Horse alighted; where the Barbarous
          Negroes cut him in small pieces with their Swords.

After reading this letter, the Director said unto us, "my dear little
friends, I am deeply sorry for all your misfortunes, and still more
so, that I am obliged to send you out of the College; but my means do
not permit me to keep you any longer, you must be ready against to
morrow morning, I shall bear the charges of your Travel from hence to
_Bordeaux_: here is a letter for your Banker, that you are to deliver
soon after your arrival thither."

Never was a sentence more dreadful to me than this; torrents of tears
fell from my eyes; my Heart was almost broken: I was in such a
deplorable situation concerning these sad tidings that I thought I
should never be able to see the returning of the Day. Clouds of
Gloominess hung upon my mind; all the night long no rest was to be
found, neither in mind or body; and was forced to rise up, as I layed
me down.

We begun our journey in a coach and went as far as _Toulouse_, a City,
where we took a Boat, and finished our voyage by water, and arrived
safe at _Bordeaux_. We went to our Banker, and were received with
great kindness.

During our residence there, the most atrocious cruelty was exercised
upon the people of the Town[5]; Blood was daily shed by those
barbarous race of Human kind, who cry down Government: nothing was
seen but terror and abomination; the innocent Blood was continually
running under the fatal stroke of the _Guillotine_, and every branch
of Royalty was to be destroyed: being afraid that we should be
apprehended, we were put at an old Dutch Woman's house not far from
our Bankers: there we enjoyed some little comfort, being quite retired
from the World. She being a protestant, (_and our banker likewise_,)
she used to entertain us with a deal of conversation about CHRIST, and
shewed us all the errors of Popery; but all this did not enter into my
mind, because I was always thinking about my unfortunate fate. My
Brothers used to go with her to Chapel, which was just by the house;
but as for me I was so unhappy, that I never could constrain myself to
go; though she used to say, "your happiness that you have lost, will
be found there, if you could take upon yourself to go:" but all this
was quite new to me, and I gave but very little attention to it. I
remained with her till GOD was pleased to put a stop to the sheding of

          [5] Alluding to the French Revolution.

About that time I heard that my Aunt V.---- was arrived in Town; I
hurried myself to go and see her: and found that she was married
again, and to a stranger, who received me with the greatest kindness.
He being a man that followed the Tobacco business, made a proposal to
our Banker that we should stay with him as being near relations to us,
which was easily granted: and we began to work with him in his
business. At first he shewed us a deal of kindness, but it soon
vanished away, for he became a tyrant to us, especially against me who
was the youngest: many a time I went to bed with a hungry belly; I
wanted all the necessaries of life, hardly clothes to put on my back,
beaten shamefully; I was the greatest slave that ever lived, for I
used to go to work as soon as it was light, and work till midnight:
many a time I was so harassed and tired, that I used to fall asleep at
my work, and awoke in the same place to begin again my slavery. I was
so tired of that course of life, that I resolved to run away;
accordingly I did, and went to my Banker for protection; but my
pretended Uncle knowing of it, came and told him not to listen to what
I said, that I was a Child and wanted correction. But he said unto
him, "those Children are not yours, they are under my care, and for
that reason I will not have them treated in such a cruel manner; and
am sorry I ever let them go to live with you, but for the future I
hope you will behave better." He promised that he would.

My Banker bought me a suit of clothes which I took with me, and
followed my barbarous Tyrant. When at home he appeared more reserve,
but for all that, I could perceive in his dissembled face that he
still bore a hatred against me. I was not mistaken, for he soon began
again with me, and threatened to flog me. I rose up from my chair in a
passion filled with despair, and said to him; "I am nothing to you,
neither Child or relation, why should you thus ill use me? if my poor
Father who is now mixed among the dust was alive, he would have taken
my part, and not suffered me to be abused thus by such a Rascally
beggar, and vile Wretch as you are[6]." He flew into such a passion,
that he did not know what to do; till the Devil which was so powerful
in him, excited him to dispatch me to the other World. For that
purpose he seized a long knife[7] which was by, and run towards me to
perpetrate his atrocious deed; but seeing him coming with such
vehemence, I ran under the table, by which he missed his aim and fell
all his length upon the floor: in the mean time both my Brothers
jumped upon his back and were assisted by my Cousin and others, to
take the abominable weapon out of his hands. He was in such a rage
when he was set free, that he frothed like a wild beast. I took the
opportunity while they were with him, to fetch a few of my clothes
which was in the room next to that where he was, and coming again
before his presence with my bundle under my arm, I said, "Brothers
follow me, let this miserable Savage live by himself;" then I run from
the spot and went to my Banker, and gave him an account of every thing
that had passed. He was sorry to hear it, but said, "there is a Ship
that is going to _Guadeloupe_ in the West-Indies, I will send you
there as soon as possible: when there you will perhaps find an
opportunity to join your Mother."

          [6] This was the first time I ever dar'd to contend with
          him, but the remembrance of my Father and former state rose
          in me such a violent spirit, that I spoke to him with such a
          Gloomy tone of voice, that all those that were present could
          not help but pity my situation.

          [7] No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper.
          Isaiah chap. 54. ver. 17.

We were made ready for our voyage that was to take place in a few
days; our Banker gave us a draught for one hundred Dollars, on a
merchant in _Guadeloupe_.

We took leave of him, and thanked him for the care he had taken of us
during our residence in that Country. We began our voyage with a fair
gale of wind, but it soon altered, and we were obliged to cast Anchor
at the mouth of the River, and remained there till the weather was
fair: the eleventh day seeing the weather and wind favorable we
weighed Anchor, no sooner were we under sail, but there rose such a
violent tempest, that we thought our endeavours would have been
without success; for we were surrounded by dreadful rocks, and the Sea
roared with such impetuosity, that it filled our Ship almost with
water. Another Ship that was close by us, was already dashed to pieces
against the rocks. Never was a scene more Gloomy, and cutting than
this; for we had seventy Women and Children passengers on board, which
put Terror into every Heart: nothing was heard but cries and Prayers.
We were in such great dangers that no one had strength to work, and we
left the Ship to GOD's mercy, expecting every minute to share the same
fate as the other Vessel had. The most affecting sight was to be seen,
every soul prostrated upon the deck, calling and exalting their voices
for GOD's merciful protection; till at last a young Man who was a
Passenger[8] started up and taking the helm, said, "my Friends do not
despair, I will be bound to take you out of danger, revive your
spirits, and help me says he, we shall soon get free from the rocks."
So we did, and were relieved from perishing amongst frightful rocks.
But for all that the wind appeased not, for it continued six and
thirty days with great violence, very often we were near to be buried
for ever in the Bowels of the Sea; at last we had fair weather and
wind to proceed on our voyage, and arrived safe at the Island of
_Guadeloupe_ at the end of fifty-six days.

          [8] This passenger was a Captain which understood the
          Navigable part of the river.

After we were Landed, my Brothers and myself went to the Governor for
a pass, to go and join our Mother who was in the
_United-States-of-America_; but the answer he made us was this, "the
Republic is a good Mother, besides that, the Island is besieged, and
we want Soldiers." As we could not get a pass, we went to seek for the
Merchant that the draught was drawn upon, and having found him, we
offered him the bill which he took and payed us generously.

My eldest Brother being a young man grown up, he made him a proposal
to stay with him as a Clerk, and said that he would satisfy him
according to his behaviour: my Brother accepted his kind offer
willingly. As for me and my other Brother, being too young for any
kind of business, we were recommended to an old Lady who received
us with much humanity; for she maintained us for six months or
thereabouts. In the mean time I began to tire of being without employ,
and acquainted my old benefactress of my disposition, which was to go
upon the Sea and learn to be a Sea-man; she said, "if that is your
resolution, I will recommend you to a Captain that I know;"
accordingly she did, and I went on board of a Privateer as a cabin
boy: and a Clerk's place was provided for my other Brother; so we
began our course of Life in the like manner as it is described. My
rank being a cabin boy as before mentioned, I was to clean the
chamber,[9] wash the dishes, and sweep the deck twice a day.

          [9] Called in Sea terms a Cabin.

We weighed the Anchor and went a Cruizing: we were a long while before
we took any prize; at last, one morning we saw a Ship, and immediately
we chased her, but all our endeavours were without success, for we
could not attain her though we sailed all the day long; and when night
was coming on the Ship we were chasing tacked about and sailed back
towards us, and when near enough she fired a gun, and made signal to
know what Nation we were; but we did not answer the signal, supposing
she was an English Sloop of war: so we prepared for the conflict. The
enemy seeing that we did not answer their signal, did not doubt any
longer but we were enemies to them; so they came as near as they
could, and fired a broad side: as we were ready for them, we returned
in like manner; and the engagement took place with courage and
obstinacy on both sides; and fought for a long space of time without
knowing what Nation we were fighting with, though we guessed it was
English, but we were not sure of it. At length of time an opportunity
offered itself; we hailed her in English, but no answer, in French, no
answer, in Spanish, and yet no answer was to be had; so we did not
know what to think of their mysterious silence. We renewed the Battle
again with great courage and Boldness, and attempted three times to
jump on board of her; but she always avoided it: our people were so
enraged, that they unanimously cried out, sooner die! than let her go.
We fought like Lions on both sides, from seven o'Clock till midnight,
at which time a misfortune happened on board our Ship; a box full of
cartridges and gunpowder blew up, and set the Ship on fire, which put
disorder among our men. The enemy, joyful to see that spectacle,
(_though dreadful_,) begun to shout aloud, Huzza! Huzza! thinking that
we should soon be theirs, but they were mistaken; our brave Captain,
who was an American, soon put the fire out, by dipping mattresses and
blankets into the Sea, and then quenched it in that manner. We begun
again to dispute the Victory till one o'Clock; and each side being
tired at that time, we took a pause of about half-an-hour; and coming
again to action, the enemy hailed us, "ah! says our Captain, well, we
will be more polite than them, for we will answer though they were not
willing to do it when we hailed them." Accordingly we answered that we
were come from _Demerara_:[10] the enemy was so exasperated at the
answer, that they answered back by saying, "you are a D****d
Liar,"[11] and renewed again the battle with great anger and
intrepidity; the bravery was equal on each part; our deck was covered
with Blood and Dead Bodies; all our rigging was cut off by the
bullets; our Bowsprit, and Fore-top-mast were cut down: the enemy
seemed to be very much damaged, for their Fore-mast and main-top-mast,
with their Bowsprit, were cut down. We were so tired and disordered,
that we were forced to retire on both sides, after a conflict of nine
hours, which was from seven at night till four o'Clock in the morning.
After an hour of rest, we were employed to repair the damages we had
received, and return into harbour; for we were in too bad a state to
stay at Sea any longer. On our journey back we had the good luck to
take two prizes, one came from _Africa_ laden with Negroes, and the
other which was retaken, was come from _Norway_, loaded with gin,
butter, and combustibles &c. We arrived safe in the harbour of
_Point-a-Pitre_ in _Guadeloupe_.

          [10] Though we did not come from that place, we applyed the
          untruth as you see above, only that we might deceive them
          and pass for an English Ship; for our Ship was a great deal
          less then theirs: besides that we were much damaged, both by
          the Sea, and by Fighting.

          [11] They were come from Demerara themselves, and they knew
          that there was no Ship of war in that Harbour. We heard
          after that the name of the Ship was the Pelican, and carried
          eighteen Guns of nine Pounders, which were a great advantage
          over us, who carried but twelve Guns of four Pounders.

I went to see my Brothers as soon as I was landed; the eldest was
removed to another place where he thought he could do better, and the
other took example from me, for he was just going out of the Harbour
when I entered in.

In a few weeks our Ship was entirely repaired, and we ventured again
upon the Sea; our design was to go a cruizing upon the coast of
_Brazil_ to meet with some rich Portuguese Ship. We steered our course
for the appointed place, and met with a deal of contrary wind, and bad
weather; but all this did not discourage us, for we proceeded on our
way with cheerfulness, and now and then a glass of grog to drive away
the care of past sorrows[12]. One day about noon we saw a Ship, and
instantly chased her, we continued the chase till very late at night
before we could come up to her, and when near we hailed, but she
proved to be a dutch vessel, which disappointed us very much: so we
left her to proceed on her voyage because they were not at war with
us. We likewise went further on, and were a considerable time upon the
Sea; till at length we begun to precieve that our provisions were
short, and being a great number of miles from the shore, we were
afraid of being starv'd with hunger; so we made haste to the nearest
land if possible, before we should entirely perish of such a
languishing and hard death, for we were perishing with hunger and
thirst: every moment we expected to be forced to come to that most
horrible and shocking point of eating Human flesh, and become
cannibals for want of food. Many were so weak that they could not
work, nor get up from the place where they lay. We were several days
in that awful and pitiful situation, exposed to all sorts of dangers
and evils; in the most painful of my agonies I swore that if GOD
spared me to put my feet upon Land, I would never go to Sea again. At
last the LORD smiled on us, and spared us once more: a sea-man who was
watching at the top of the mast, shouted, Land! Land[13]. Never was
joy greater in our Hearts than that day, to see ourselves set free
from dangers, and safely landed at that most desirable and appointed
place; and found that it was _Cayen_ near south _America_.

          [12] This is a real Mariners principle.

          [13] In famine he shall Redeem thee from Death. Job chap. 5.
          ver. 20.

The Doctor went immediately on shore to provide food and refreshment,
and ordered that no one should eat any thing without his orders;
because, he said, "some will not be wise enough to content themselves
with a little, and if our bodies which have been void for so long a
time were filled all at once, it would undoubtedly cause our Death."
So we were fed by degrees untill we recovered our former strength. We
remained at _Cayen_ about two months, and then departed to go back to

I was again hardened, and broke the Oath that I had made to GOD, by
going again upon the Sea. About the eighteenth day that we were on the
Sea we saw a Ship, and chased her; in the mean time that we were
chasing, arms were prepared for the battle: and the Captain of
Volunteers called me to take care of the arms which were upon a large
box; so I kneeled down and clip'd a great quantity of pistols and
muskets to prevent them from falling, and all their mouths were fixed
towards my breast. Not long before I was in that posture, the Doctor
who was below called me; I instantly quitted my post and ran to his
orders: no sooner had I left my position in which I was before, than a
pistol went off unexpected, and wounded the Captain of Volunteers in
the knee. I was so surprised at this, that I thought, (_and even was
sure_,) that it was GOD's mercy to spare me; for in the posture that I
was as before mentioned, I could not have escaped being killed upon
the spot[14].

          [14] He shall deliver thee in six troubles; yea, in seven
          there shall no evil touch thee. In famine He shall Redeem
          thee from Death; and in war from the power of the sword. Job
          chap. 5. ver. 19 & 20.

The Ship that we were chasing, when near proved to be a large man of
war, and we being too small to attack her, were forced to run away,
and happily escaped.

I return, to the Captain of Volunteers, whose wound made such a
progress that he was obliged to have his leg, and a part of his thigh
cut off; and I, being assistant to the Doctor, assisted to hold his
leg while he was performing the operation: all that did not prolong
his life many days, for his time was come; he departed eight days
after the amputation.

We proceeded on our voyage for _Guadeloupe_, and arrived safe there.
Having had so many misfortunes I thought that the Ship was unlucky,
and resolved to go no more with it; so I asked for my discharge, and
it was granted; but before I sought for another place, I inquired
about my Brother who did take pattern by me, and venture to Sea: I
heard that he had had good luck, for he had received fifty pounds
prize money.

My eldest Brother was in his place still, but a misfortune happened
unto him while I was on shore; the Gentleman and the Lady where he was
at; were at variance on his account, for his Master was jealous of
him, and he was obliged to quit; having nothing to do, he determined
to follow our example; and embarked in the same Ship where my other
Brother was; they wanted me to go with them, saying, "if we perish, we
shall perish in the arms of each other, and if we have good luck, we
can work and live together in union:" but I could not be persuaded, I
wanted to have my own way, for I knew that it was enough for me to
bear my own misfortunes, without adding to those of my Brothers: so
they both took leave of me, and went to seek their fortune.

A few weeks after their departure I embarked on board of a small
Privateer, carrying only two swivels, and seventeen men: we sailed and
cast Anchor at the Island of _Marie-Galante_, to take some provisions;
and again went out for Sea. Soon after, we met with a large
Merchant-Man; passing by we hoisted an English colour to deceive her,
and having men on board that could speak the English Language
perfectly well, we hailed her; she was come from _Martinico_ and going
to _England_, and had fourteen guns: our Captain said to us, "they
think that we are English, but let her sail on, and when night comes
we will attack her:" so we followed her at a distance, till the time
was come to perform the intrepid design; coming near all was silent,
and every one of our Men were ready to jump on board at the first
signal; and when near enough orders were Given, and our wishes
fulfiled; for we took her with very little resistance, and conveyed
her to _Curacao_, a Dutch Island. The cargo consisted of five-hundred
and fifty-four hogsheads of Sugar, twelve ditto of Coffee, and
eighteen bales of Cotton; which when sold gave every one a prize of
fourteen hundred dollars. Being young and foolish, I soon spent a
great part of my Money with my comrades, in drinking, dancing,
Gambling, &c.

I was sometimes intoxicated for a whole week, and every night at the
ball room, along with bad company. I was two months in _Curacao_, and
spent five-hundred and forty dollars; after which we proceeded with a
larger Ship, which was ready for Sea, in which we sought for a better
fortune. A few days after we were out, another prize fell into our
hands, which we sent to the place above mentioned; and proceeded on
our Voyage, and went to _Bonaires_, a dutch Island, to take some
refreshment. After we quitted that place, we perceived that our Ship
had a leak, for we had fourteen inches of water in the hold every
hour, which forced us to enter into the Harbour of _Porto-Cabello_, a
large Spanish City on the coast of the _Meridional America_: we were
there two months; and proceeding further, we cast Anchor at
_Cocoa-madrilla_, a Spanish Town on the same coast as before
mentioned, and remained there but a few days: we went out and cruized
for a long while, and having captured no Ships we went into the
harbour of la _Guaires_, another Spanish City, to take some provision,
for we were short of them.

During our stay there the Lieutenant of the Ship and two men went to
take a walk on shore, and were taken up, and put in the inquisition,
because they did not bow to the HOST: for as it was related to us by
them, that when they were passing through the streets they saw a great
procession of Clergymen, going with a large silver Cross, to give the
Extreme-Unction to a sick person; they not knowing the rules of the
Country, passed by, and took no notice: when they were examined, and
found under French colours, the inquisitioner could do nothing at
them, but release them.

We went out of that abominable Harbour with the design to go back to
the happy Island of _Guadeloupe_.

On our way back we took two prizes, but were retaken again; so we went
and cast Anchor at _St. Martin_, a French and Dutch Island, and were
but a few days there; and straightway we sailed for _Basse-Terre_ the
Capital City of _Guadeloupe_, and from thence to _Point-a-Pitre_,
where I Landed my little treasure which consisted of one hundred and
twenty pounds; as I had a Cousin there who was a sober man, I
deposited the money in his hands to begin a small trade; and I was
determined not to go on the Sea for a long while, as I thought my
money would suffice me to live in a decent manner; when I was just
going to begin trade, my Cousin was taken very ill of the putrid
fever, and was in great danger of his life. One day he called me, (_he
was then very ill_,) and said, "I have lent the money that you have
deposited in my hands, to Mrs. Pero[15]:" I said, very well, you are
wise enough to know what you do? he said do not fear, the money is in
good hands. I did not care much about him lending my money, because I
knew that he was too good to do me any injury; but growing worse every
day, I began to be afraid; and was going to speak to him to inquire
whether had Mrs. Pero given him a receipt or not, I was prevented by
her, saying, "he wants some repose and you must not disturb him." She
knew too well the matter, or she would not have prevented me speaking
to my Cousin: she was nights and days watching in his room for fear I
should speak to him. I had no witness who could testify whether she
had given him a receipt or not: and was so tormented in mind about it,
that I did not know what to do, till I saw he was dying, when I
resolved to go into the next chamber where his trunk was, and look in
to it if I could find any paper concerning my money: at the time I was
looking into the box, she came in, and said, "what are you looking
for?" a receipt I said, Madam? she knew then what I meant, and said,
"do not be afraid, I have got your money, and you shall have it back
again, whether your Cousin live or die." I was a little reconciled by
what she said, but she took care that no one was present when she said
it: and the day after my Cousin breath'd his last.

          [15] She kept a linen drapery shop where he boarded and

I was very much affected at the Death of so near a relation, and went
in the Country for a month to alleviate my sorrows: when I returned to
Town, I went and asked her for my money, that I wanted it to begin
some business: she said I will satisfy your request. And went to her
desk, she brought me five and twenty Portugueses[16] which she laid on
the table, saying, "this is the remainder of your money, here is a
bill[17] of what I have paid for your Cousin." I took the bill and
read it: there was so much for physic, and the Doctor's trouble, for
board and lodging, for the funeral, and for goods of different sorts,
&c. It was the most shameful bill I ever saw; I began to fly into a
passion, saying "this bill does not concern me at all, besides, I am
not compelled to pay the debts of my Cousin." She then began to grin,
saying, "if you are so impudent and insolent you shall have nothing at
all, because I am ignorant whether the money was yours." I was so
irritated that I thought my anger would have choaked me, I did not
know what to do, having neither attestation nor receipt; so I was
forced with great reluctance to take the five and twenty Portugueses,
and to leave the rest to her.

          [16] A Gold coin worth thirty-six shillings.

          [17] It was a forged one as I heard after, as the Doctor did
          not charge any thing for his trouble.

With the little I had I bought some goods, and went to _St. Croix_, an
Island belonging to the Danes, where I sold my little Cargo, and got
double of my money: and after I had settled my business there, I went
to _St. Thomas_, an Island belonging to the same, and there I
purchased some other goods to go back to _Guadeloupe_, when there, I
sold them for three times as much as they cost me: seeing fortune
smiled on me, I took courage, and bought goods with all the money I
was worth; but not being well enough in health to undertake the
voyage, I trusted a friend with my business: he went to _St. Thomas_
again, and sold the goods at a very good price, and some others were
purchased for to return; when only three miles from the Harbour where
he was to land, he was taken by the enemy; which ruined me totally. I
was then worth nearly three-hundred Pounds, but all was lost.

I now began to look for another kind of business, and was recommended
by some of my friends to a Gentleman, (_a planter_,) to be his Clerk,
and to look over his plantation; but did not remain long there, though
I performed my duty with zeal, and was loved as their own child; the
reason was, I could not be happy from the Sea, though I knew it was
very dangerous. I acquainted my Master of my thoughts; he told me to
go and try again, and if I had not good luck to come back to him; for
says he, "my house shall always be open for you." I took my leave of
him, and went again upon the roaring Ocean, seeking after the fortune
of this World: on our way we cast anchor at _Desirada_, an Island not
far from _Guadeloupe_, and stay'd there only a few days. After we
departed from the Island forementioned, we were some time without
seeing any vessel, but one morning we saw a large Ship, which we soon
perceived was an English Frigate; we lost no time, but put all the
sails out to make our escape if possible. We were almost out of sight
of the enemy, when the greatest misfortune happened unto us; our mast
being too much loaded with sails, and the wind being very high, by
which cause the mast broke, and fell down. Having neither mast nor
sails to effect our escape, we were obliged to stay where we was, and
were taken prisoners. We were well treated by the enemy while we
stayed on board their Ship; and were afterwards landed at the Island
of _Martinico_, and put under close confinement in a prison Ship.
Being the first time I ever was confined, I was plunged into a gulf of
despair and grief; every day I was scheming how I should make my
escape, till at last I found a way for my purpose; and guided by
resolution, was determined to fulfil my scheme. It was the ninth day
after my confinement, when I, and two others escaped from prison, by
breaking an iron bar which fastened the port-hole, and letting
ourselves down into the Sea by the means of a rope: we swam about half
a mile before we could reach the shore; having gained the land, I
wrung my clothes, which consisted only of a shirt and trousers: we
began our journey through a great shower of rain, and when passing
through the town, the sentry called? we immediately ran away as fast
as we could for fear of being taken again; but the third of our band
being left behind, was taken again; and I, and my comrade proceeded on
through brambles and briers all the night long; and when the sun was
beginning to spread its beams upon the surface of the Earth, we
entered into a thicket to hide ourselves, and take a little rest:
while I rested myself my comrade watched, and so on by turns till the
approach of night, which enabled us to pursue our way through its
gloomy shadow.

Being excessively harassed by fatigue and hunger, we endeavoured to
see whether we could find some wild fruit to satisfy our inward wants,
but all our efforts were in vain, for nothing was to be found through
the darkness of the night; and as morning was coming on apace, we
retired to an adjacent wood. In the pitiful and perishing situation in
which we were, I could not help but lament my deplorable fate and
condition; when on a sudden I felt for the first time, a glimpse of
the love of GOD, and many ideas came into my mind such as this? rely
on GOD, and He will help thee, and stand by thee. With all these
thoughts I fell upon my knees, and began to pray in the midst of the
wood, saying, as well as I could.

"Now, O! GOD that I am in distress I call upon thy power and goodness,
because I know that there is no other that can alleviate my pain but
thou. O! GOD, though I am in trouble, yet I feel that it is good for
me to be so, for I have a comforter to fly to; but forgive me that I
have liv'd so long without doing the duty which I ought to have done
towards thee, for it was nothing else but the pleasures of this
perverse World which banished me from thee, and my misery and trouble
has drawn me near unto thee: do help me, and guide my steps that I may
fall into no dangers, and bring me safe back to the land where I come
from; and with thy help O! GOD, I vow to serve thee according to my
knowledge all the days of my life here on Earth, and hope to praise
thee above when time shall be no more." AMEN.

I did not quit my position till I thought I had full assurance that
GOD would protect me under all my troubles and trials.

As night was drawing nigh, we began our nocturnal journey as usual.
Two days and nights were gone without having tasted either food or
rest; when passing through a Village, an old Woman who was sitting
before the door of her house, called us: I did not know whether I
should go or not, but I said to the comrade of my misfortunes, let us
go and see what she wants. Coming near to her, she said, "I know my
friends that you are deserters from prison? be not afraid I will do
you no harm, knowing what it is myself, for my Son is a prisoner in a
French Country, and I should not like that any one should ill use him
if he was in the same case as you are now." She questioned us upon
many subjects concerning the state of her Son, and at last she said,
"I think you must be wanting of food, since you left prison?" I
answered that for two days we had not had any: immediately she went
into the house, and beckoned us to follow her. Being in the house she
told us to sit down, while she dressed some meat, which she did with
great dexterity: and presenting the same to us, I said, "O GOD! since
thou hast been pleased to provide food for us this night, bless it we
beseech thee with thine own power and will." AMEN.

The old Woman was much pleased to hear what I had said; and after we
had satisfied our wants, she gave us some more meat tied up in a
cloth, and shewed us the road that led to _St. Peter's_ Town: we
thanked her for all her kindness, and proceeded on our march all the
night long until morning, which forced us as usual to retire into some
thicket or wood: there I began to thank GOD for having preserved us
from dangers and pursuits till the present moment; I then took the
cloth which contained our provision: having spread it, I called upon
GOD to give his blessing. My comrade said, "you pray too much, do you
think that GOD takes notice of what you say?" surely said I, because,
if He did not take notice of what I said and asked him, He would not
have provided for us: well says he, "all your nonsense will bring
nothing but bad luck."

After we had refreshed ourselves, I tied up carefully the remainder of
our food, and said to him, if you desire to take a little rest, I will
watch in the mean time: he did so, and when asleep, I went a few yards
further and rested myself in prayers, for they were the best
refreshment I ever could take; after my duty was performed, I was easy
and full of an unknown joy which I could not describe.

Some time after my comrade got up and told me to rest myself and he
would watch his turn; but I told him that I was not wearied, and it
would be better to search the wood, to see whether we could find any
fruit; he agreed with my proposal, and we went seeking for some
provisions, for ours were getting very short: after a long while
rambling up and down, we found at last a great quantity of wild fruit
of all sorts, some of them were very pleasant to the taste; we
gathered as much as we could carry, and as it was already dark, we
came out of the wood and travelled on as usual. We were several nights
and days rambling up and down in the greatest misery, till at last one
night we arrived at _St. Peter's_ Town: there I, and my comrade
parted. I went on board of an Irish Ship which was in the Harbour, and
he on board of another. I was well received on board of the Ship, but
as I was very hungry and having had no refreshment for some time, I
told them my situation; and they gave me some food. I was after
introduced to the Captain, who told me that I might stay in the Ship
and work with the other men: I was about three weeks on board working
very hard, and receiving very ill treatment. One day a Negroe came on
board about some business, and I asked him many questions about the
people of the Town, and especially about two Gentlemen which I
perfectly knew; one was a Knight, and the other a Baronet. I sent by
the Negroe a few lines to them, and as soon as they received them,
they hurried to come to see me: they were struck at the first sight to
see me in such a deplorable situation, as they knew my parents, they
could not help but mourn and pity my miserable state: they told me to
go with them on shore, which I did with great pleasure, though I was
ashamed of myself being very dirty. Arrived at their house I was put
into a bath to wash me, for I had need of it; and clothes were
provided for me: after I was dress'd I could not believe that it was
the unhappy me, when looking at my ragged clothes which I had on but a
few minutes ago; I was in a perfect state of happiness, for nothing
concerning the necessaries of life was wanting for me. I was in that
state of affluence for three months, and wheresoever they went, they
took me with them, so that I was acquainted with the best company of
the Town: but for all that I did not forget my GOD.

Some time after they procured me a passage on board a Ship that was
going to _St. Thomas_: all necessaries, both for life and body were
provided for me, and ten guineas which they gave me when we parted,
also letters of recommendation.

We went out of the Harbour and sailed towards _Dominica_, where we
cast Anchor to take some passengers, and from thence we sailed to _St.
Kits_, where a part of the convoy were waiting for us, after to _St.
Bartholomew_, for some other business, and from thence to _St.
Thomas_, where we arrived safe after a good voyage.

I went to the Gentlemen for whom I had letters of recommendation, and
was received with great civility and kindness; one of them took me to
his house while I stay'd at _St. Thomas's_. The first Sunday I went to
Church with him and another Gentleman that I did not know, and that
same Gentleman said to me after we came out of Church; "I hope you
love GOD, young man?" I said yes, well, said he, "in all your troubles
trust to the LORD JESUS CHRIST, and whatsoever you stand in need off,
ask it in his name, and I am sure He will grant it unto you, for He
has promised through _His Blood_ to make intercession for us." I
kindly thanked him for his instruction, and he withdrew.

I remained at _St. Thomas_ three weeks, and took an opportunity of
going to _Guadeloupe_; but before I took leave of the Gentleman where
I was at, I thanked him for all his goodness: he said, "you are
welcome to stay longer if you chuse;" I returned him my thanks saying,
I wished to see _Guadeloupe_. "Here is a purse (_says he_,) which I
beg your acceptance of;" then shook hands with me, and retired, he one
way, and I the other. I immediately went on board, and in a few
minutes were out of sight of the place where I received so much
kindness. I had a pleasant and short voyage, and safely landed at that
most desired Island of _Guadeloupe_. I hasted to see my acquaintances;
and having inquired after my Brothers, I heard that they were taken
prisoners, and conducted to _Plymouth_ in great _Britain_.

As I had nothing do and no desire to go to Sea any more, I went again
to my late master (_the Planter_:) who was very glad to see me, and
encouraged me by raising my wages, which made me apply the more to my

As I did not yet forget my Maker, I daily performed my duty towards
him who had been so gracious unto me. My master (_or rather my
friend_,) soon perceived a great change in me, which he did not know
what to attribute it to; at last he knew by some of the servants who
watched me, that I was in the ways of Christianity: some times he used
to plague me about it, for fun, but for all that he did not esteem me
the less.

One day having some company at home, that were invited to spend two or
three weeks with us; I retired as usual after supper to bed, and knelt
down: at the time I was pouring out my soul unto GOD in prayers, a
young lady inadvertently passed by, and seeing my chamber door half
open, stepped in; and finding me in the posture as before mentioned,
she bursted into a loud laugh and rushed out of the room, and in a few
minutes I had the whole company round me making all sorts of jests,
some laughing till they fell down on the floor, others holding their
sides with laughing, and others jumping and stamping, &c. It was
indeed such a noise as I never heard before, for it was both a
tragedy, and comedy. In all that disturbance I was as firm as a rock,
and did not move from the place in which I was, untill I had fulfilled
my duty towards my SAVIOUR. I told them it was very unmannerly to
disturb me thus, in my most precious time: for prayers were my best
delight and comfort, and without them I could not rest nor be happy.
The tale soon spread in the neighbourhood about me being a devout,[18]
so that I was persecuted daily by my own friends, but as I did not
mind them, they were soon tired, and at last were obliged to let me be
quiet, seeing they could not get master over me.

          [18] In England, if any profess Christianity, he is called a
          methodist, and in France or any other dominions appertaining
          to the same, a Devout.

Three weeks after that scandalous scene, I was taken very ill, of the
putrid and malign fever; three days after the Doctor gave me up, for I
was so ill that he thought I could not recover.

I was ten days and nights senseless; and saw wondrous things in my
agony; and the eleventh day I came to myself again: my keeper said to
me, "I hope you have prayed enough this time?" I did not know what she
meant, but having asked her the reason why; she said, all the time I
was senseless, I did nothing else but pray night and day untill I came
to my senses again. I was a long time before I could recover my former
strength again; and as soon as I was able, I went to my business. I
then was melancholy with thinking about my Country, and Mother; as for
my Mother I did not know in what quarter of the world she was in;
notwithstanding that, I took my pen and wrote, first, to _St.
Domingo_, and then to two or three other places where I thought most
likely, but all was without success, for no answer was to be had.
Again I wrote, and so on for about eighteen months without receiving
the least tidings: which made me some how think that my poor Mother
was no more. I was in such a low state of mind that my life became a
burden to me, I could not find any comfort either in amusement or
prayer; and when at prayer, I prayed not with such a delight as I used
to do: so that in a short time I quite turned my back from the path of
the truly and most blessed LORD JESUS CHRIST, and became again as
wicked as ever.

One day my master called me, and said, "the Negroes are in rebellion,
and you must go to war and fight." He provided horse and arms for me,
and sent me to join the cavalry that were encamped at a little
distance from where we lived. Some days after I was at the camp, the
Captain ordered me to go into the Town to carry some dispatches; I
made some excuse, telling him to send some others; but he said, "you
are appointed to go and you must for I dare not trust any other." I
obeyed and went out of the camp, and rode to Town which was nine or
ten miles distance from the place above mentioned; and not being able
to return the same day, I waited till morning: but what was my great
surprise at the moment I was putting my foot in the stirrup to return?
an alarm was given that the whole camp were murdered in the night,[19]
except one who escaped having on nothing but his shirt. We being the
only persons that were spared, we were put into another company, and
marched on the same day against the rebels, and were successful in all
our attempts. I was for three weeks night and day fighting, some times
wet through with rain, and at other times suffocated with the heat:
all that while, I never knew what it was to lay down or take rest;
neither having an opportunity to put clean linen on: but at last we
returned into the Town, where we took some refreshment and put clean
linen on, for we had need of it. No sooner was I refreshed, but I was
ordered to carry some letters of consequence to a camp nine miles off;
but as the road was very dangerous, I asked one of my comrades to go
with me, which he did with great pleasure; we arrived at the camp
without the least injury or danger: but it was not with the same luck
we went back, for as we were passing through a dark Wood, (_it was
then between ten and eleven o'Clock at night_,) a shower of musket
balls were fired at us, which unexpected noise and hissing, so much
frighted our horses, that it was impossible for us to lead them; they
rushed through brambles and briers, and at last plunged into a dead
Lake, where we had like to have been drowned; but our horses being
stout animals, they swam and gained the other side in a few minutes.
We made the best of our way through woods and thickets to escape the
fury of the balls which were continually flying about us, and after
having wandered a great while through unpracticable places, we found
again the road, and rode as fast as we could to the Town: since that
affair I have been in many obstinate and bloody engagements.

          [19] Oh! reader consider and meditate? see how GOD was
          pleased to spare such a rebellious Creature as I; and how
          Divine Providence distinguished itself by calling me alone,
          though I, with obstinacy refused to comply to its orders:
          but who can resist the power of the LORD when he says, I
          will and they shall, &c. "Oh! bless the LORD O my soul, and
          all that is within me, bless his holy name: for the LORD has
          done wondrous things. He has lifted me up, and has not made
          my foes to rejoice over me."

One day as I was reading the news-paper, I heard that _St. Domingo_
was in a state of tranquillity; at this I was determined to go
thither: accordingly, I went on board a Ship that was going there; we
went first to _St. Thomas_, to take some passengers, and for my dear
Country we sailed, and arrived safe there. My first inquiry was my
Mother; I was about two days rambling through the streets without
hearing any tidings respecting her or any other relations; till at
last peradventure I met with one of my Cousins that was in _France_ at
the time I left that Country; she took me to her house and entertained
me with loving kindnesses; and told me that my Mother was in the
Spanish part of _St. Domingo_, at the distance of sixty miles from the
place where I then was.

Anxious to see the author of my days, I would have set out
immediately, but she entreated me to spend a week or two with her, to
which I agreed: we related to each other our misfortunes, and soothed
each other's sorrows. Once in my conversation I was speaking of that
barbarous and pretended Uncle of mine, who used me so ill when I was
in _France_; I asked her whether she knew where he was, she told me
that he was in the Town, and not far from the house; I was indeed
amazed that such a wretch was still alive; she told me also that he
came some times to see her; well, said I, if he comes I will be ready
for his reception, for I am no more what I formerly was, [_a Child_,]
that I should dread him. Two days after, he heard that I was in Town,
and came to see me: as soon as he came into the house, my mind was
struck with horror. He advanced towards me and asked how I did
stretching forth his hand to shake hands with me; I refused my hand
and said, Sir, I do not shake hands with people that I know not. "why
(_said he_) don't you know me?" no Sir! I replied: "why don't you know
your Uncle S?" no Sir! I never had any relation of that name: "why
don't you remember you lived in _France_ with me?" no Sir! for I am
sure I never saw you before to day, if I did, my mind does not afford
me the recollection of your features: "how is it you don't remember
me, who married your Aunt V.---- in second wedlock?" "Oh! yes I do now
you execrable villain; retire from my presence, monster of iniquities;
think not that you shall go unpunished, nor escape the wrath of GOD,
for the sword of vengeance hangs over your head, and will crush you to
atoms in an unexpected time that justice may be satisfied." He first
blushed, then became pale, and without replying left the house; and I
saw him no more while I tarried there. My Cousin was very much pleased
with my reception of him; but as the time I agreed with her was
expired, I thought of going to see my Mother; so I took leave of her
and embarked in a long-boat which was going that way: in four and
twenty hours I was landed at _Moutechristo_ where she resided, and was
not long to find out the place of her dwelling, the Town being small.
I will just let my reader know how I made my entrance: first, I
knock'd at the door; when in, I asked her whether she knew me; she
said no Sir; I asked her again whether she had not Children abroad;
she said yes, "but, [_giving a deep sigh_,] all my hopes are vanished,
for it is between thirteen and fourteen years since I have seen or
heard from them." I then said to her, behold the youngest of them
before you: she exclaimed in a transport of joy, "Oh! my Son is it
you? my dear H.---- is still existing?" and then fainted: but was not
long in that state, for her exceeding joy soon called her to her
senses again. My hard heart was melted in an instant; I could no
longer withstand that filial love; I threw myself into those arms
which were so desirous and eager to welcome me to that breast which
was so ardently panting for me: our joy was so great on both sides,
that neither of us could utter a word. Our language was only by sighs:
and those precious tears which bedewed my face when I first parted
with her, were once more mixed with mine. Our arms interwove in each
other as an emblem of the most affecting tenderness. In that posture
we remained a long time, so much were our feelings affected, that we
could not utter a single word.

Some time afterwards, she shewed me my little Brother and Sister, by
her second husband; and dispatched my Brother to go and fetch my
Father-in-law who was then at the farm, a little distance from the
Town. In the mean time she said to me; "your Father-in-law is an
honest man? he is not like many others, but he is a true Father that I
have met with for you;" she then asked me where my Brothers were; I
told her they were taken prisoners by the English and conveyed to
England: at the same time my Father-in-law came into the house, which
interrupted our conversation. He seemed to be very joyful of my
arrival, and treated me with the greatest kindness. This was the
happiest moment I ever enjoyed, being in the bosom of my friends. But
all this happiness did not last long, for the Negroes rose up again,
and killed every white man that fell into their hands.

I was then compelled to stand in my own defence, as a foot soldier;
every night, alarms were given, for the blacks were at the gates of
the Town: but having received reinforcement, they were repulsed.
Afterwards I was sent to garrison, fifteen miles off, where I stay'd
four and twenty days; at my return my little Brother fell sick of the
fever, and died in two days after; which put my Mother and
Father-in-law in such distress of mind, that I thought they would have
followed, especially my Father-in-law, for he was a man of very tender
feelings: but by degrees and length of time, their griefs were

Five months were expired since my arrival at my Mother's. I was daily
upon guard, or doing some other things respecting the warfaring
business. One day being on guard, I was informed of the arrival of
both my Brothers; I immediately ran home, and found it was so; my joy
was inexpressible at the sight of them, particularly at the eldest,
who was, and always has been my most intimate friend: it was then five
years and some months since they were taken prisoners; during that
time I never heard from them, which made me think many times that they
were no more in this World. Soon after, the report of their arrival
was spread in the Town; and coming to the ears of the commander of the
place, they were sent for by his orders, and enrolled[20] them into a
company of foot soldiers. The duty was hard, the rebels being daily
about us, and almost every night there was some fighting or attempt.
One day after a very bloody engagement that was fought at the advanced
post, I was sent thither with the company which I was in to reinforce
them, in case they should be attacked again: I stay'd there four and
twenty days, and was relieved by my eldest Brother. The day after I
took leave of him, and returned into the Town. As soon as I arrived,
my Mother sent me to the Metropolis about some business. When there,
the troubles were so great, that no one was in safety of their lives:
three days after my arrival, a strong battle took place, and lasted
from four o'Clock in the morning till six in the evening. The day
after I was occupied in doing the errand for my Mother; and as soon as
I had done, I wrote a letter to her, sending an account of all the
business; and told her she must not expect me to return, nor perhaps
see me more; telling her my reason was, that _St. Domingo_ was a place
too dangerous for me to remain in any longer: and told her not to be
uneasy about me, for I had already taken shipping.

          [20] May it please GOD to enrol them in the Royal Regiment
          of Saints, commanded by his most truly and Honorable Son,
          the LORD JESUS CHRIST.

We set out the 3d of May 1803, from the harbour of _St. Domingo_: I
bid my distressed Country once more Adieu; thinking to myself it is
perhaps the last.

My intention when I embarked was, to go to _St. Malo_, and take
shipping there for the coast of _Africa_. I had on board a small cargo
consisting of Sugar and Coffee, which when sold would have enabled me
to begin a trade according to my purpose. We steered for the place
above mentioned; six days after we were at Sea, we had such a rough
wind, that we were obliged to reef our main and fore top-sails: all
our efforts seemed to be unsuccessful, for we were driven amidst
dreadful Rocks; and the winds redoubled with such violence that
nothing was seen before our eyes but terrors; every moment we expected
our fatal end to take place; we fired guns of distress from time to
time hoping that some Ship would hear us and come to our assistance,
if there was any about: but our endeavours were in vain, and we were
cast in the midst of the Rocks. The scene is too cutting for me to
relate it in all its parts, for it was enough to unman the stoutest
Sailor: every man was in the most profound consternation; nothing was
seen before our eyes but Death, and that in dreadful forms. At every
instant pieces of timber were swimming about the almost wrecked Ship;
the water covered almost the deck. We were in that deplorable
situation till morning; and to our great joy, a Ship offered itself to
our view[21]; we immediately put the long-boat out to Sea, to go to
the Ship for refuge: I flung myself into the boat with what I valued
most, and five other men did likewise. As our boat was too small to
carry all the people, several were obliged to remain upon the wreck of
the Ship, till we could return with the other Ship's boat to save
them. We rowed away the boat, and went to the Ship that was in view;
when there, the Captain asked me if all the people were come; I told
him no, because our boat was too small to carry them, and we came to
beg his assistance, for those miserable Creatures which are now upon
the remainder of the wreck. He said, "they may save themselves if they
can, but as for me I cannot go, the weather is too favorable for me to
lose a minutes time; you may go back if you like to save them; but as
for me, I will go my way." So he sailed, and we went with him; the
others remained upon the wreck of the Ship, in the midst of a wide
Ocean, without either help or hope. The Ship which saved me was a
French Ship, and steered for his own place.

          [21] When thou passest through the waters, I will be with
          thee. Isaiah. chap. 43, ver. 2.

The 21st day of June 1803, being at Sea, we were met by an English
Vessel who told us that war was declared between _France_ and
_England_, and for that reason we were taken prisoners, and conducted
to _Plymouth_.

I stay'd 35 days in _Plymouth_, and was sent after to _Tiverton_ in
_Devonshire_ upon _Parole_ of _Honour_; there I remained five months,
and was sent afterwards to _Ashbourn_ in _Derbyshire_. I arrived at
_Ashbourn_ the 17th of december 1803, and was in such a deplorable
state of mind, that I did not know what to do. Very often the public
house was the place where I went to seek comfort, by getting
intoxicated, and then casting all my sorrows behind me; I after awhile
took such a delight in this course of life, that it became quite an
habit to me; I was the greatest Sabbath breaker that ever existed; I
was daily fighting or swearing the most execrable Oaths, which was
enough to excite the anger of GOD against me. One morning being half
drunk, I went out to take a walk; when passing through a dark foot
path, I was persuaded by some evil spirit to put an end to my
miserable life. For that purpose I went into the darkest part of the
place, and took my knife out of my pocket to accomplish the horrid
deed.--The instrument was already lifted up, and the stroke was to
ensue; but an Angel of the LORD, (_or some thing of that kind_,)
stopped my rebellious hand, and my weapon dropped from it; then many
ideas came into my mind such as these, "Oh! miserable wretch, art thou
going to plunge thyself into eternal misery? remember thou art going
into Hell head-long, if thou dost such a thing:" I was struck with
terror with those ideas, and was so frighted, that I durst not move
from the place for fear that the justice of an avenging GOD should
fall upon me. I stay'd in that place for some time, and went home with
such a burden, that I could hardly bear: having my head cast down as
if I was a criminal, for I durst upon no account lift it up.

I was for several days in a such distressed state of mind, that I had
not courage enough to go out; for I thought every body knew what was
the matter with me; and to appease my wounded conscience, I thought
that a reformation would have been sufficient to justify me in the
sight of GOD: so that I began to build, as it is said upon a sandy
foundation, by performing a few formal duties; thinking that by my
good works, I should merit the favours of GOD so as to forgive me all
my trespasses. The plan I had formed was this: having a Roman Catholic
prayer book, I thought it was all-sufficient to calm my troubled
breast, and to bring me to a perfect state of happiness. So every
night and morning I used to kneel down, and taking the prayer book I
read the morning and evening prayer; this performance I thought would
please GOD, and get me from under the terrors of an accused
conscience: but in all these vain duties I never looked to JESUS for
forgiveness or remission of sins, neither to his precious and
cleansing blood, nor could I perceive the depravity of my corrupted
nature: but I depended wholly upon my best endeavours and good works.
I continued but a little time in doing those erroneous duties, and
felt insensibly at last that all my fears were vanished away; I was
like the dog, returning to his vomit again: for I begun the same
method as before, keeping all sorts of bad company, and breaking the
sabbath with drinking, swearing and fighting &c. I was at the least
five days drunk in the week, and always quarrelling.

One day in one of my mad fits, (_though I was not drunk_,) I resolved
to delay no longer to put an end to my miserable existence; for that
purpose I went into a garden near by: the same instrument that had
been lifted up before, was again employed; I was in such great
despair, that I was relentless towards my own life and happiness; so
that I lifted up my sanguinary hand and struck my left breast
twice[22].--I fell down senseless; some persons who were near, hearing
the exclamation I made, which was, Oh! Mother, I shall never see thee
again! came to see what was the matter; and to their great surprise,
found me wallowing in my own blood. They carried me into my room for
dead, and some person went to fetch the Doctor. As soon as the Doctor
saw my wounds, which were through my lungs, he said, I can be of no
use to him, for he has not ten minutes to live; but if he does, I may
be of service to him: and went away. But he was soon fetched back
again for I was not dead. When he came the second time, he gave me
something to drink which recalled me to my senses: my inside being
full of blood, he thought it would be proper to bleed me, it might
ease me a little, for I could hardly breathe. After I was bled I fell
into a swoon; the Doctor then said, if he lives till one o'Clock it
will be a wonder. Some-body went to fetch a Catholic Minister[23], who
lived in the same Town; when he saw me, he told me to recommend my
soul to GOD, saying, that I had but a few minutes to live: and after
this short exhortation he went out of the room, saying, it was too
much for him to see.

          [22] I have sinned: what shall I do unto thee, O thou
          preserver of men? why hast thou set me as a mark against
          thee, so that I am a burden to myself. Job, chap. 7. ver.

          [23] I did not know for what purpose they went for him; but
          I supposed it was to administer unto me the Extreme-Unction;
          for as it is reported among the Roman Catholic that a man or
          woman dying without having received the Extreme-Unction,
          (_which they call a Sacrament_,) must either go to
          Hell, or in Purgatory.

I was restless all the night, for I could not sleep on account of the
soreness of my wounds. When morning came I was so weak and so
feverish, that the Doctor thought I could not live to see the sun set.
Night came, and yet alive: but I was so tormented with ideas as before
mentioned, that I durst not shut my eyes for fear I should awake in
Hell. I was three nights without taking the least rest; for I was
afraid to fall asleep, as I made it a sure thing in my mind, that if I
fell asleep, I should awake no more. I felt myself in such a miserable
condition, that I thought GOD would never forgive me. All the time I
was in bed, I lay upon thorns as it were; for I was so filled with
grief and sorrow, occasioned by my misbehaviour towards the
everlasting being, that my life was quite miserable.

During the time of my affliction, I had such ideas and thoughts
concerning my state, that I appeared to myself the vilest of men; but
for all that I did not know from whence came these thoughts and ideas.

I was six or seven weeks before I could walk out; and was a great
while before I could get any strength. I was five months in the most
distressing state of mind, and continually tormented by some thing or
other, which I could not discern. Some times I went out to meditate a
little, but no sooner was I out, but was forced to return home again;
because I could not rest any where. One day after many dreadful and
frightful ideas, I felt some thing extraordinary in me; and then for
the first time, I perceived that I was a sinner[24]; and one beyond
expression: I saw the horrible state in which I was plunged; I felt
that I was upon the very brink of destruction: and felt also, that no
one could alleviate my pains but GOD. For that purpose I went to
church; when there, I could hear nothing that could do me any good. At
night I went to the Methodist Chapel; there I did not find any comfort
so as to set me free. When at home, I went to prayer; but could say
nothing but the LORD's prayer, which I knew from my infancy.

          [24] Though I had had a taste and a view of the love of GOD,
          (_as you may read in the former part of my life_,) and
          a great desire to serve and worship him; yet I did not feel
          the corruption of my fallen nature, neither the great weight
          and burden of my inveterate sins and transgressions: I was
          far from thinking of the inestimable worth and want of a
          precious SAVIOUR. I had a zeal, but not according to
          knowledge; I was like that sect which the Apostle Paul
          speaks of in the tenth chapter of Romans and the third
          verse: for they, being ignorant of GOD's Righteousness, and
          going about to establish their own Righteousness, have not
          submitted themselves unto the Righteousness of GOD.

          "I thank GOD, through the LORD JESUS CHRIST, that He has
          subjected me unto his blessed and Everlasting Righteousness;
          and made me sensible of this, that without the Blood of his
          dear Son, my sins must for ever remain."

I spent the week in reading the new Testament; and longed daily with
impatience for the return of Sabbath, that I might try again to seek a
place where I could lay all my burden. When that happy day was come, I
went to SION Chapel: the text was taken out of the twenty-seventh
chapter of the Prophet Isaiah, the last verse; "and it shall come to
pass when the great trumpet shall be blown" &c. I was very attentive
at the preaching, in hopes I could hear some passage that might
comfort my distressed mind. The Minister brought forward the Brazen
Serpent in his discourse, saying, when Moses lifted it up, he said,
whosoever shall believe in it, shall be saved; for thus shall the Son
of man be lifted up. I felt a little comfort from these words, but not
sufficient to calm my troubled mind; because of the weakness of my
faith. As I had not heard sufficient, I went at night to the Methodist
Chapel. I did not dislike the sermon, but did not feel so much there
as I did at SION Chapel: I spent the week rather better than I did the
last, and was not so much distressed.

One morning I went to take a walk, when fifty yards from the house, I
remembered I had not served GOD when I got up; I was so struck with
shame, that I ran back to my chamber to say my prayers. Such a thing
as that happened unto me three times, but was always overcome by the
fear of GOD, for I durst not on any account go out of my room except I
had render'd thanks to GOD for his protecting grace and mercy; for I
thought, that if I was to neglect, his wrath would fall upon me &c.

Sunday came, which I longed for with so much impatience; and with joy
I went again to SION Chapel. The text was taken out of the Epistle of
Paul to the Philippians, the third chapter, and the ninth verse; "and
be found in him." The very word of "be found in him," went deeply to
my heart, and proved sweet to it; for it comforted me and released me
from all my guilty fears; and convinced me of all the errors we are
liable to by Nature. I was so overjoyed at that sermon, that I could
not depart from the place till I had spoken to the Minister[25]; to
tell him the benefit I had received under his labour. I went home
joyful at what I had heard and tasted, and I cast all my cares and
sorrows away: and was only thinking to serve him who shed his blood
for me.

          [25] the Reverend Samuel Franklin, of _Ebley in
          Gloucestershire_, Minister in Lady Huntingdon's
          connection, then at _Ashbourn in Derbyshire_.

Now persecution began to take place by my worldly companions; they
called me all sorts of shameful names[26], even threatened me with
punishment if I did continue in hearing the word of GOD. I could not
go through the streets without meeting with some ill treatment from
them; but as I did not mind what they said, I told them I would sooner
go to the scaffold and suffer Death, than renounce JESUS CHRIST. Their
persecutions continued for a long time, but seeing I did not take any
notice, they were obliged to let me go in peace.

          [26] My friends scorn me; but mine eye poureth out tears
          unto GOD. Job, chap. 16, ver. 20.

I went to no other place of worship but SION, where I first found the
treasure of the _Crucified One_. Some times I thought myself too
unworthy to be saved; but at other times I had better thoughts, when
reflecting on Paul, Manasseh, and other characters &c.

The week before _Good Friday_ I was taken ill, and was obliged to keep
my bed several days. In the mean time I prayed unto GOD to give me
health and strength, that I might be able to go and hear his word that
precious day he bought my Salvation; but it was not permitted; for
that very day I was extremely ill, and wept bitterly because I could
not go to SION my happy place. So I called for a new Testament that I
might read a chapter or two; but I was so weak, that I could not read;
and was forced to put the book down. In the afternoon I felt myself a
little better, and took the book I read a chapter, by which I received
some comfort.

I was very patient under my afflictions, for the more I was afflicted,
the more my mind was comforted; I did not fear the sting of Death at
all, because, I had faith to believe I should be happy. In a few weeks
I was entirely recovered, and the LORD soon after blessed me with the
Spirit of prayer, so that I could join my friends in CHRIST in their

Now I am fully convinced that I am found, and brought back to the
flock of whom JESUS CHRIST is the Shepherd: and I will adore and
praise him for what He has done for me through Grace, and trust in Him
for what He has promised to do.

"O! most blessed JESUS, thou who hast been pleased to protect me
through so many dangers, and watched over me ever since my youthful
days; be pleased I beseech thee, to keep me now that I am found: I did
not find myself, thou knowest; but it was thou, O! most blessed JESUS
who found me when lost and ready to sink into the valley of
destruction. Thou hast brought me from thousands of miles to shew me
thy light divine, and to make me a prisoner of hope instead of a
prisoner of war. O! Eternal THREE in ONE, look down on thine unworthy
servant, and water his Soul with the dew of thy Heavenly Grace, that
he may be prepared to receive that never fading Crown, which is at the
end of the race thou hast enabled him to run: and help him to renounce
all other works but thine. Now I forsake all the riches and pleasures
of this world, for the Eternal life which was purchased by the
precious Blood of thy dear Son JESUS: to which I beseech thee, to keep
me now, and to the end." AMEN.


    "_This my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost and is


    Now though six thousand miles from home,
    Yet nearer to my GOD I come
    'Twas JESUS' love that set me free,
    And brought me back by grace to thee,
    And JESUS will lead me to see;
        Eternal days.

    And now that I am found,--keep me
    That I may never go from thee:
    Thus fill my soul with thy free grace,
    That I may run the christian race,
    And see my SAVIOUR face to face;
        In endless days.

    Thou didst seek me when a stranger,
    In my guilt and road to danger,
    And to bring me home to my GOD,
    Didst interpos'd thy precious blood,
    That I might sing with saints aloud;
        Through endless days.

    O! blessed be the sacred Place,[27]
    Where I have found such Heav'nly grace,
    That sav'd me from my nature's fall,
    And give me on my GOD to call;
    O! JESUS at thy feet I fall:
        Through endless days.

    Till then, do thou in my heart dwell,
    Rule in it and do all things well:
    Lead me to that e'erblessed place,
    Where I hope to behold thy face,
    And help me thy foot-steps to trace;
        To endless rest.

    There I shall praise my SAVIOUR dear,
    While his own Righteousness I wear:
    I'll shout and sing redeeming love,
    Which did my first affections move,
    And never more will let me rove;
        Through endless days.

          [27] SION Chapel.



*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A short account of the extraordinary life and travels of H. L. L. - native of St. Domingo, now a prisoner of war at Ashbourn, in Derbyshire" ***

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