Third Continuation of the Reports of the Undertaking of Several Helmstaedt Professors for North Carolina
North Carolina Office of Archives & History Department of Cultural Resources
Historical Publications Section The Colonial Records Project
Jan-Michael Poff, Editor
Historical Publications Section
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North
Carolina
Historical
Review


Last Updated 03/02/01

Third Continuation of the Reports of the Undertaking of Several Helmstaedt Professors for North Carolina


                                                                      

[135]

Promoters, Subscribers and
Those Paying in Advance.

____

Goettingen
Prof. Kulencamp.

Hameln

Mr. Lueders, Mayor, 2 copies and, 5 Rthlr., for copies of the Second Catechism, [intended] for poor Children in North Carolina.

Helmstaedt

Mr. Oeltze, Privy Councillor, and Councillor of Justice.

Petersburg

The Rev. Mr. Lampe, Pastor of St. Peter’s Church.

Virginia

Mr. Hartman, traveling companion of our Mr. Storch as far as Baltimore, has contributed to our fund 7 Rthlr., advanced for freight and customs from Brunswick to Bremen.1

_____

Our last news concerning the Rev. Mr. Storch is the announcement received by us last autumn from Mr. Faber of Charleston, that in the last named city his safe arrival in Baltimore was already at that time generally known. [It further stated] that his early arrival was expected in Charleston, where everything for his generous reception was in readiness.

The manner in which Mr. Faber emphatically assures our traveller, even in advance, of his friendly hospitality, is an earnest for the many good things which may be expected for the future progress of the cause.

While we are engaged in the preparation of this preliminary report for the last number of our text books, the pastor of the Cathedral Church, Mr. Nicolai, in Bremen, sends us the glad news that also our Rev. Mr. Roschen landed safely in Charleston, Nov. 29th, of last year.

[136]

Consequently we owe it to the favorable dispensations of a kind Providence and the specific support of our many altruistic friends, that since Oct. 14, 1786, there has actually much more been accomplished, with Germany as a base of operations, than could reasonably have been expected. All this was done, as it were, in answer to the fervent wishes of our German brethren, now cut off from their native land by the ocean and living on the most distant border of the civilized world. Two well prepared and courageous ministers have reached the shore. For a third prospective minister the money is even now in readiness and will be available as soon as we have the assurance of those conditions, which we, for the sake of him, personally and individually, have stipulated should be met both there and here. Besides, the fountain is now opened,—and it certainly will not dry out completely during this next summer. This will enable us to render further assistance, especially by means of practical books.

According to our promise we now hereby give a public account of the final status of the North Carolina Fund, as far as it was placed under our corporate management. We gladly give this to the magnanimous public which has entrusted us with its generous contributions. The result is as follows:

1. Total sum of all expenditures to date, 1386 Rthlr. 10 ggr. 8 pf.
2. Surplus money, which (with the exception of the costs for printing and mailing this last Report) remains an integral part of the North Carolina Fund, 390 Rthlr. 20 ggr.
3. Money for subscriptions still in arrears, which the promoters of our enterprise are kindly asked to send in to Mr. Leuckart, printer in Helmstaedt,2 about 200 Rthlr.
Approximate stock of copies of our “Text Books,” possession of which we hereby assign to the North Carolina Fund, inclusive of that which after the first settlement, presumably made in Leipzig, must be taken into account. From this, however, there must be deducted the substitute copies for the Sixth Book, which will be enumerated below:
1. Of the North Carolina Catechism, about 1050 copies.
2. Of the Question Book, belonging to the same, about 150 copies.
3. Of the Biblical Handbook, about 350 copies.
4. Of the Biblical Narratives, about 320 copies.
5. Of the History of Religion, about 330 copies.
6. Of the Geographical Handbook, about 350 copies.
7. Of the Practical Information, etc., about 350 copies.
8. Of the First Catechism, about 190 copies.
9. Of the Second Catechism, about 250 copies.
10. Of the Index of Bible Verses (for the Larger Catechism,) about 550 copies.

[137] Herewith we also append the supplemented list of donated books. Since Sept. 25, of last year the following were received:
Intended as a gift,—purchased from our fund to increase the desire for reading and independent self-help, to be presented partly to church and school libraries, and partly to industrious children:
Campe’s “Robinson the Younger.” 25 bd. copies.
For Pastor’s libraries (as a gift of the Publisher, Mr. Crusius, in Leipzig) The Children’s Friend, 2nd Ed. 24 parts.
Beyer’s Handbook to Luther’s Catechism, for children and teachers of children, Vols. 1. and 2.
Beyer’s Appendix to this Handbook.
Beyer’s Extract of this Handbook.
Beyer’s Sermons on the Exposition of Popular Religion. 2 vols.
Herme’s Fischer’s and Salzmann’s Contributions towards the Improvement of the Christian Public Worship. 2 vols.
Hay’s—Religion of the Philosopher.
Priestley’s Lectures on Rhetoric and Criticism. (Gifts of the translator, Mr. Eschenburg, Privy Councillor.)
Eschenburg’s—Archaeology of Literature and Art. (Gift of the Author.)
Eschenburg’s—Fundamental Principles of the History of the Greek and Roman Fables.....(Gift of the Author.)
Seiler’s Larger Book of Biblical Devotions, Psalms, Pts. 1. & 2., 4 cops.
Seiler’s Biblical Religion and Doctrine of Salvation. (Gift of the Author.)
Wiedeburg’s Humanistic Magazine, 1788, St. John’s Number. (Gift of Editor.)
J. C. Huth’s The Most Necessary Information for the Establishing, Estimating, and Calculating of Water Mills. Especially for grinding mills, oil mills and saw mills, for amateurs and connoisseurs of the art of mill building. (Gift of the Author.)
Further (from our fund) were purchased, and as far as the numbers were already published, added to our packages for Charleston, of which subscription is to continue:
Annales Literarii Helmstaedt, 1787; ‘88; ‘89. 1 copy, and in similar manner to follow: Rintels’ Annals of the Latest Theology, Literature and Church history. 1789, 2 copies, (One for Charleston and the other for circulation among the pastors in North Carolina.) Further (likewise from the Fund)
Suckow’s Industrial and Technical Chemistry,
Gmelins Technical Chemistry, 1 bd. copy of each.
Beckmann’s Technology,
V. Lamprecht’s Technology,
Fuchs’ Outlines of a General Guide to Health.
Scherff’s List of First Aid Helps for those seemingly dead or whose life is suddenly endangered. 6 pamphlet copies of each.

Provision will also be made later for a number of Bibles for poor children in North Carolina by means of the remaining surplus in our Fund, as soon as the other and more immediately urgent objectives of the Institute have been obtained. At first however we must provide for the most urgent needs of those regions far removed from all sources of Literature.

[138] (Furthermore) there were sent on Oct. 13, 1788, in one package to Mr. Faber in Charleston the following: The two books, enumerated as being in stock, at the end of our last Report, p. 32, for the kind supervision of the Rev. Mr. Mutzenbecher in Amsterdam through the good offices of Mr. Jacobi, student of Amsterdam.

In the middle of November, 1788, through the kind assistance of the Rev. Mr. Nicolai in Bremen, to Mr. Faber in Charleston, in two packages: (for pastors’ libraries)

Wiedeburg’s Humanistic Magazine, 1788, New Year and Easter numbers.

50 bound, and 50 unbound copies of the third number of our textbooks, as continuation of the first number, of which, at the time of the first issue 100 copies were sent.

(Mr. Faber and the pastors Nüssmann, Storch and Roschen are at liberty, according to existing conditions, either to sell these copies for the North Carolina Fund, or to dispose of them gratis in our name. Furthermore we shall not demand of these men any accurate and detailed account since they, more than anyone else, are personally interested in this cause, and since we know from our own experience how impossible such a report would be.

50 copies each, in pamphlet form, of three of our textbooks, viz: The History of Religion, The Geographical Handbook and the North Carolina Catechism. (These shall subsequently be deducted from the 370 Rthlr., Church funds of the Buffaloe Creek congregation, which were deposited on interest in Hanover, of which there is mention made in our Report for the third number pp. 6 and 7.)

In the near future there shall be sent, in addition to the 50 bound and the 50 unbound copies of this fourth number, as continuation of the 100 copies of the three first issues, for the fund in two special packages, prepaid as far as Bremen, addressed to the Rev. Mr. Nicolai, for his convenient forwarding to Mr. Faber, the following:

All the books designated as gifts above. Likewise (to be deducted from the Buffaloe Creek Church fund of 370 Rthlr.) 50 pamphlet copies of our fifth publication — Kluegel’s Practical Information, (Logic).

Furthermore there were sent to Dr. Gerling in Hanover (as a gift of Supt. Lueder of Dannenberg for the Rev. Mr. Nüssmann):

Resewitz’s Sermon Outlines of 1768 and ‘69.
Lueder’s Letters on Vegetable Gardens, 3 Parts.
Lueder’s Foundations for Christian Ethics, 25 copies.

Finally we are in hopes of obtaining, a copy (complete if possible) of the Goettingen Scholarly Recorder, as a gift for the North Carolina Church Library, through a distinguished patron of our Institute whose warm and specific recommendations from the very beginning have contributed much to the successful progress of our enterprise.

[139] In a measure, then, we might really feel ourselves free from all worry over the conscientious fulfillment of our promise, especially since the causes for the resulting delays were beyond our control. In another matter however we are exceedingly anxious to request the indulgence of a kind public, since after all a part of our intended plans can not be carried out, and we are therefore not in a position completely to fulfill our promises. It had been our intention to furnish further a Handbook of Civic Knowledge in which an application of Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics was to be made for the arts, industry and agriculture. It was hoped that thereby might not only result a general dissemination of useful information, but that especially in regions in which there is still much to be wished for in the utilization of natural products and in the furthering of skilled industry, this might prove a helpful stimulus for original invention (or ingenuity). There certainly was no lack of effort on our part in collecting, arranging and assorting the necessary material, so that it was rather the great abundance of material that proved the greatest obstacle in the execution of the plan, which we had repeatedly announced, both orally and in writing.3

Beckmann’s—Technology; v. Lamprechts’ Technology; Gmelins Technical Chemistry; Suckow’s Industrial and Technical Chemistry.

However we have not completely abandoned the hope that two of our friends, whose zeal for human welfare knows no rest, will each in his special field, in some way produce, or at least direct the production of, a publication suitable to our needs. (Perhaps the publisher, if only his attention is directed to it, will gladly have several dozen of extra copies printed gratis.) Because we should also have been glad to supply a work on Didacetics, as well as for the sake of our fellow countrymen far removed from all connections with German literature, we will furthermore add and recommend the following list of books which are very important for the common welfare of mankind, because they contain valuable directions for the maintenance of life and health:

Fuchs’—Outlines of General Hygiene, and
Scherff’s—List of Foods, for those apparently dead, or in danger of immediate death.

If in the future, in connection with the annual bookfairs or through the kindness of bookdealers, gift copies of the above list, or of similar books for the pastors’ libraries of North Carolina, should be forwarded without transportation charges to me, addressed to Rev. Velthusen, High Consistory of Rostock, I hereby promise to forward them to their destination if at all possible. It is then very probable that copies of various [140] useful books will be assigned from there on various routes. In my preface to the Biblical Handbook I had already mentioned that our North Carolina friends in such matters would do best to apply to Mr. Bohn, Bookdealer in Hamburg, of whose sympathetic interest in this cause our Reports have already given the most unmistakable proof.

Finally in order not to exhaust the patience of our kind subscribers, we found ourselves obligated to assign this work, which to be sure must be very welcome to all Germans both here and beyond the sea, to some other author who was not restricted to a certain fixed number of pages, and who could also append the illustrative copper engravings, almost indispensible for such a book.4

But even thus we would not have justified ourselves fully in the eyes of our magnanimous promoters. To be sure in the case of most of these it is obvious that they did not contribute for the sake of the possession of just seven books or of any particular publication, but rather for the support of our plan, which in the main issues has been fully executed. Those who have advanced half a louisdor on the complete set will be given allowance for the greater part of the six books actually delivered. Among the others who paid or subscribed a half Rententhaler for the still incompleted sixth publication, there are presumably very few who would not gladly permit us to send them, instead of the desired book, some other book of equal value; for instance, a copy of our 4th, Biblical Narratives and History of Religion, or of the 5th, Logic, or of the 7th book, Geographical Handbook, or if these should be exhausted, of the 3rd book, Biblical Handbook. Meanwhile, however, we acknowledge our obligation to give anyone, who demands it, and before St. Michael’s day of the current year, explains the situation in detail to one of our society, the just reimbursement which he may demand of us.

This would then, in a certain measure, almost automatically bring to a conclusion our corporate connection, which, according to our specific explanation at the end of our announcement of Nov. 28, 1786, was not to extend beyond the execution of our plan as it had been agreed upon. But in order that the public as well as my North Carolina friends might be fully assured of their property in North Carolina which was designated in our final Report (likewise of the 370 Rthlr. deposited on interest in Hanover as church money for the Buffalo Creek congregation) I, Abbot Velthusen, may add that I at my new location will give a faithful account of all things entrusted to me, to my two friends and future official assistants of that place, Prof. Priess and the Privy Counciller, Mr. Roennberg. (These men as well as Prof. Wehnert in Parchim are ready to offer me their hand in fraternal coöperation in the further discharge of official duties, for which the flourishing commerce and the extensive navigation offer considerable assistance.) After a sojourn of thirty years Providence has decreed that I in a few weeks shall follow the [141] call of my beloved country and conclude the remainder of my pilgrimage as Councillor of the High Consistory and Professor in Rostock.5 May Almighty God compensate with his best, fatherly blessings, the friends and co-workers from whom now fate separates me; the good country which I with heavy heart leave behind me; and the excellent ruling house, whose favor through eleven years instilled in me courage for every bitter task,—for the kind assistances by which one or the other undertaking, whenever official duties or an inner impulse furnished the stimulus, was promoted.

Thus far we had described the successful progress of our undertaking, when (on the 4th of this month) the letter of Mr. Faber in Charleston, dated Sept. 5th of last year, was received: The Rev. Mr. Storch found also in Charleston, where a respected merchant, Mr. Gaebel, offered him a friendly reception in his home, all the love which we had any right to expect or wish for here. His sermon won for him approval, respect, confidence and friends. After twelve days he left the good congregation which procured for him a horse and such other things as were necessary for his journey. The money for this was secured by means of new contributions and also at our request, partly from the subscriptions of that place which had already been guaranteed before.

He entered upon his overland journey with the escort of an experienced farmer-preacher of North Carolina, who solemnly promised to look after his interests with the greatest of care.

Helmstaedt and Halle, March 6, 1789.

J. C. Velthusen. H. P. C. Henke.           
L. Crell. G. S. Kluegel. P. J. Bruns.       

Postcript

Rev. Storch’s own letter from Charleston, of Aug. 15th and 20th of last year, received here on the 7th of this month, confirms the above report concerning the unusually friendly reception which he found there. The Messrs. Faber, Gaebel, and Schutt, as well as several others showed him in a very practical way that affection which in his circumstances has a threefold value. His letters express a courage with a Christian foundation. Likewise the friends in Baltimore in every possible way made easier for him his journey from there to Charleston. They supplied him abundantly with food and refreshments. One of them bought so many books from him that he had sufficient money for this part of his journey.

Helmstaedt, March 9, 1789.

Velthusen.                                            

[142]

(Advertisements.)

The following are on sale by S. L. Cruisius in Liepzig:
J. C. Velthusen’s North Carolina (Helmstaedt) Catechism, or Christian Religious Instruction, Based on Holy Scriptures.

2nd. Ed. (9 Reems) 5 ggr.

Ibid. Question Book for Parents and Teachers, or Outlines for Questions and Conversations about the Catechism, taking into account the variation in ability and age of the young people. (13 Reems) 12 ggr.
Ibid. Index of Bible Verses for the Larger Catechism. (1½ reems) 1 ggr.
Ibid. First Catechism with the Five Chapters. (1½ reems) 1 ggr.
Ibid. Second Catechism, with Questions, the Five Chapters together with Luther’s Explanations, also several prayers for children. (4 Reems) 2 ggr.
Ibid. Biblical Handbook for Independent Readers, with an Appendix for Bible Reading, with Selections. (20 Reems) 16 ggr.
H. P. C. Henke’s Selection of Biblical Narratives, for the early youth.

(7 Reems) 6 ggr.

Ibid. History of the Jewish and Christian Religion, for First Instruction.

(10 Reems) 8 ggr.

APPENDIX

Reports concerning the Evangelical Church organization in North Carolina; especially concerning the endeavors and experiences of the Reverend Adolph Nussmann, who was sent to that State in the year 1773, by order of the King of Great Britain, and at the instigation of the Consistory of Hanover; together with recommendations as to how in the best possible way we Germans, without any great expense, might be able to help our scattered brethren in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.

In order to give a full account of the missionary work in North Carolina, which is supported by Hanover and London, I do not now have the necessary papers, which I, in July 1773, when I resigned as Courtpastor at London, left with the German government office of that city, from which place essential matters can readily be supplied or corrected if necessary. At the time of my departure the Consistory of Hanover, by order of the King, had granted the request presented by two delegates from a German Evangelical congregation in North Carolina, that they might receive for their church a resident pastor from the British province in Germany. Simultaneously with him there had been sent a sexton, who had been prepared for his work at the splendidly equipped Teacher’s Seminary of Hanover, and a considerable number of Bibles, hymnals, catechisms and other books. The funds for the transportation of these persons and supplies were raised by generous gifts in Germany, by royal munificence, and a collection taken at the Court Chapel. Part of this money was conveyed to me in person by the late Counsellor to the Consistory of Hanover, Goetten. After defraying these expenses there was a surplus which I, with the advice of the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Cornwallis, deposited with the Society for the Propagating of the Gospel in Foreign Countries, because this organization had offered its help and services in case there should be established a permanent pastor’s charge in North Carolina. The reason for this temporary deposit was to urge the congregation, before receiving these donations intended expressly to increase the funds for a permanent pastor’s salary, to furnish a legally valid document concerning the considerations offered orally by the two delegates to the pastor (and also the sexton, or school teacher). As a matter of fact everything was still so uncertain for the pastor that the King and Queen, in order to protect him against the exigencies arising from his first arrival in America, provided a [143] special gift, which they conveyed to him through me, with the specific declaration that this gift was intended for him personally, and not for the congregation.

The Consistory believed, and later results have also, contrary to my original hesitations, confirmed, that there was perhaps no one better suited for this newly established charge than Mr. Adolph Nüssmann, a former Franciscan, who, through the study of philosophy (expecially the Wolffian System) and through a more intimate acquaintance with our Evangelical Church organization, was lead to serious reflection. Even as a Catholic preacher, he had gained the reputation of being no strict papist, and later he became more and more confirmed, at the University of Goettingen and also in his work at the Teacher’s Seminary in Hanover, in the doctrines and convictions of the Evangelical Religion. The late Mr. Goetten, who had devoted himself to this whole cause with a paternal, almost apostolic enthusiasm, provided his protegee with advice and instructions, which, as far as information could be had, were perfectly adapted to the best interests of a spiritual advisor for the people of North Carolina. The enlightened members of the German Court Chapel in London became very fond of him when he preached at that place, to the general satisfaction of all. Their confidence in him was further strengthened when, since no ship sailed for Charleston within three months, they, in order to reduce the drain on their collection funds, gave him his meals at their own tables. And I had further opportunity to convince myself of his sincerity and integrity, inasmuch as I, during this same period of time, lived in the same house with him.

For almost fourteen years his friends (in Germany) received no communicatin from him directly, and the only news concerning him was that he was experiencing some hardships caused by some of his disloyal brethren who instilled in his congregation a suspician that he was secretly still an adherent of the Papacy. These rumors furnished no information about his personal welfare, nor about the progress of the Evangelical Churches in North Carolina in general. Only recently, however, I was pleasantly surprised to receive a letter from Mr. Nüssmann, dated May 11, 1786. Its contents will be welcome news, not only to those who fourteen years ago gave their active support to this missionary enterprise, but also to all those who are able to discern anything significant for the future in the situation in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, which is so favorable for the dissemination of enlightenment and culture through religion, art, and science. There are, however, too many of my interested friends in England and Germany, who would be willing to support my wishes,—with which I, however, do not now wish to embarrass them,—too many Christians and good people in general, who have a sympathetic feeling for German children living on the borders of the civilized world,—too many, that I could give a personal written report to all, who at the present time would be glad to share my joys and my concern for the future. I have therefor resorted to the means of a printed announcement. I beg, however, most urgently that everyone, who cherishes any good-will or affection for me, consider my appeal on this occasion as if, in my extreme dilemma, I were approaching him specifically, as a last resort. It is no fanaticism if I believe that we here have a situation in which we, without any great expense, may be able to instill in the children of our [144] fellow-countrymen, an affection for Germany and England, which may bring about new trade relations and at the same time may produce a feeling of human sympathy among our brethren still living in a state of primitive nature, and in the end result in temporal blessings and prosperity to our descendents.

From the enclosed copy of a letter by the Rev. Mr. Nüssmann to the late Mr. Goetten, of May 4, 1784, I see that the congregation on Second Creek Rowan County, which has built a church about twelve miles from Salisbury, and otherwise gained some prominence through its good organization, had for some time entertained some misgivings toward their pastor, Mr. Nüssmann, and had appointed as his successor their school teacher, Gottfried Ahrnd (I think that was also the name of the Sexton mentioned above.) They had had this man ordained on the Saludi River in South Carolina by a certain Mr. Buelow (a former clerk in a store, who had done some preaching. Later, however, when Mr. Ahrnd accepted a call from the congregation across the Catawba, they joined Mr. Nüssmann’s charge again and lived in peace and harmony with him. Disregarding the closing of the school, this arrangement, as long as there was such a shortage of educated ministers, was considered after all a step of progress for the cause of Christianity there in general, since there were so many congregations scattered about in the country who were really longing for the Word of God, and since the requests of so many poor people could not be declined.

The strongest and most prominent of these congregations is the one on Buffaloe-Creek, Mecklenburg County, from which also the second letter was sent. It had consented to the delegation to Germany, not because of its share in the collection, but from a genuine desire for the Word of God; it received Mr. Nüssmann at once in the most friendly manner, and consists of none but members of the Evangelical faith. During the years 1771 and 1772 it built a church twenty miles south of Salisbury (eight miles from the church on Second-Creek), a frame building, quite presentable in appearance according to local standards, and decorated in the interior with rather fine cabinet work. During the most strenuous period of the war, when It was dangerous to ride through the woods every week, meetings were held here only every two weeks. Throughout the winter the children, and until far into the summer occasionally the adults, were given religious instruction in the school.

During the period of his misunderstanding, Mr. Nüssmann also served, at first a congregation with an admixture of members of the Reformed Church (whose church was located six miles southwest of that on Buffaloe Creek); later an Evangelical Congregation near Peintchurch (three miles southeast of Salisbury); but always in such a way that his main attention was focused upon Buffalo-Creek. He writes as follows: “Thus I made my living during this time, although sometimes rather meagerly, with much and hard work. To be sure several opportunities were offered, which would have improved my temporal conditions, but I considered it my duty to remain at my post, and not for temporal advantages to forsake a congregation that was indeed poor, but nevertheless was very anxious to have the Word of God proclaimed in their midst.”

The congregation has its church discipline, and its elders and stewards who meet every four weeks. The main school, near the church, consisted [145] in the winter of 1783 of seventy-two children, continued throughout the year, and has a man from Hanover (George Friesland) as teacher. There are two second rate schools, one with thirty-six, and the other with twenty children. These hundred and twenty-eight children, however, do not constitute even half of the number of young people. The church owns one hundred acres of land, all timber, and had at the last balance a surplus of 12L 10S from the regular Sunday collections. The preacher’s salary is raised by voluntary contributions.

Incidentally he mentioned that during his misunderstanding he did not wish to become involved in the cashing of the check sent by the Privy Councillor von Hinueber in London to a merchant, Mr. Alexander Gillon, since he was of the opinion that under the uncertain circumstances it would be better to leave this money where it was, until one could see what the outcome would be.

In his own words, quoting from a letter of last May, I will give you a description of the condition of the Evangelical church in these three Southern States at that time: “For want of instructors and school-teachers they are in utter confusion, and if help does not come soon they will fall back completely into paganism. Thousands of families, with numerous children, scattered at wide intervals, are forgetting Christianity; their children know even less of it, and their grandchildren are becoming genuine heathen. There are no teachers capable of giving the proper instruction, and those that are there, tear down more than they build up. I have labored as faithfully as I could with my inadequate capacity, and as much as the Lord gave me strength, but one arm is insufficient. With grief I observe every day that there is something lacking, now here, now there, now everywhere. My efforts have always been directed upon the welfare of the whole, rather than on any particular part, however, in such a manner that my chief concern was always Buffaloe-Creek which received the Word of God from the very beginning. One must here still take the place of an apostle, rather than that of the advisor of a congregation. If one were to restrict his activities to a single congregation one could indeed do it a great deal of good, but the injury to the whole would be all the greater.” And later he adds: “In the most outlying places, where blindness, ignorance, superstition and fanatic enthusiasm rage, the teachers are separated from each other by seventy, eighty, a hundred, and even two hundred miles.”

However, because it is impossible to give help as specifically from the distance as in close proximity, and since I furthermore can not endure, on the one hand, to stimulate an adventurous spirit of wandering among my fellow countrymen, nor on the other hand, to arouse an enthusiastic spirit of proselyting among our young theologians and future school teachers, I would prefer to keep these sad pictures to myself, and implore God in solitude for help, rather than make an ostentatious plea before the eyes of all Germany for pity in behalf of our scattered brethren, if our friend had contented himself with mere complaint, and had not actually made every possible effort to avoid becoming a heavy burden upon us, and to be permitted merely to receive from us such assistance as we can readily give him from the distance, which we certainly, even as fellow human beings, owe to one another.

[146] He has entered into a more intimate friendship with the Rev. Frederick Daser, Evangelical minister of Charleston, in order, as he says, to bring about a closer union between the rapidly progressing states of Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina. Since the Assembly of North Carolina has appointed him, because he is a German, third commissioner for the building of the first academy in Salisbury, he is also planning a more permanent provision for the essential needs of the future. For the present, however, he appeals to me, by all that is irresistable to my conscience, to grant him three requests, which, if I only receive some help, I could never deny him. First of all he wants two additional preachers, for whose maintenance they promise to make every possible effort, as soon as the young men have arrived at Charleston.

I suppose that among the young men, whose character and ability I have opportunity to observe here daily, there could easily be found one, or perhaps several, into whom one could, as Mr. Nüssmann expresses it, instill the heart, courage, and the proper apostolic zeal to spread the gospel, even midst great hardships, in those rapidly developing states. However, until the congregation definitely offers, with legal obligations, what it will be able to do for the support of a preacher, I will not accept anyone, even though some candidate should offer himself, and still less will I persuade anyone. On this point I hope, however, in due time to receive the fullest assurance, since I already know how I can provide for the transportation to Charleston.

Rich people, who often are not able to help all those suffering in their immediate vicinity, I should not like to approach for a gift, even though I know a number of altruistic people who would cheerfully, and without persuasion, give a contribution, and thus obligate me to sincerest gratitude. But fortunately there is in sight still another source, which would not call for very much assistance, and consequently would to most people be no cause for embarrassment. I would be willing for this purpose to offer a supply of my publications, still held in stock, at reduced prices, and dispose of them as follows:

“Sermons and Homolies”—at 1 Rthlr.: a publication for the training of future rural preachers, and for the solution of doubts concerning the first two chapters of Matthew, under the title of:

“Sophienruhe,” at 6 groschen: A treatise confirming the proofs for my translation* of the Song of Songs, and containing the historic elements of that book, under the title:

“Der Amethyst,” at 6 groschen.

For the first apply to the Academic Publishing House in Leipzig and Dessau; for the second to the Bohemian Publishing House in Hamburg and Kiel; and for the third to the Publishing House of the Royal Orphanage at Brunswick. The names of those who, for the promotion of the North Carolina missionary project, have, through the purchase of a part of these publications, supported an undertaking which lies heavy on my conscience, shall be printed in the preface of a catechism to be described later. In case they object to the full name, at least their initial letters, or any other signs which they themselves may designate, will be printed. Likewise, I hope among my local friends, known to the public here, and with several who have already expressed their willingness, to come to an agreement upon [147] a definite plan as to what we here, on our part, can do. This company, thus closely associated with me, will, for the present, assume the responsibility that all the money, coming in from any of these sources, will actually be applied to the above mentioned purpose.

Mr. Nüssmann’s second, and most urgent request, which I cannot ignore, is for an entirely new catechism for the young people of North Carolina, which is adapted to their local needs. He expressly demands that I undertake the preparation of this work, and has for this purpose outlined a plan which coincides almost exactly with a textbook that I had some time ago intended for the children of our faith scattered about on the prairies of Lueneburg. It will contain only a few explanatory notes, consist mostly of quotable Bible verses, and be provided with a complete code of morals. I shall have it printed by private subscription, as soon as sufficient subscribers are found to defray the first expenses. Subscribers will please send their names to the three publishing houses mentioned above. I should also like to ask all bookdealers and post offices for the same favor. Since I am unable in advance to determine the size (number of pages) of the catechism, I shall for the present fix the price at eight pfennigs per (printer’s) sheet. The surplus, after deducting the costs, will revert to the missionary fund.

Since there is a desire for additional textbooks, for example, a more suitable collection of Biblical stories, a history of religion, a guide to information about civic life in general, I have already secured from some of my local friends, who are specialists in their fields, the promise to undertake similar tasks, as far as their urgent duties permit.

The third request of our Mr. Nüssmann is to send him books suitable for the establishment of a church and school library. Everything that is sent to me postpaid, for this purpose, I shall receive with the knowledge of the missionary society affiliated with me, shall forward that which seems suitable for this purpose, shall sell the remainder, including duplicate copies, and add the proceeds to the missionary fund.

Helmstaedt, 1786.

Johann Casper Velthusen,                               
Doctor of Divinity, and duly appointed         
teacher, chief pastor, and general                   
superintendent, also Abbot of Marienthal.   


FOOTNOTES

1 We are glad on this occasion to note that meanwhile in Fridrickstown they have begun to print German Catechisms and other text books.

2 By means of this source perhaps a fourth minister might be transported (or at least a part of his transportation might be supplied). But since the necessary amount for such transport will not be provided at the time of the final closing of this account, we will designate the rest of the money for the purchase of books, for the binding, in cloth or in pamphlet form, of donated documents, and for the transportation of the same as far as Charleston, or some neighboring port.

3 As we know from previous experience one cannot in 12 to 16 quires, to which we would have been restricted, accomplish anything complete and satisfactory with so many objects, especially since for this purpose a clear explanation of details is necessary. Furthermore one can find the most complete application of mathematical, physical, and chemical information to the arts, industry and agriculture in the following works, which we here enumerate for the benefit of our friends in North Carolina.

4 In order, in a measure at least, to compensate our brethren in North Carolina for their loss, we have secured from our fund a number of copies of Campe’s Robinson Crusoe.

5 In some sort of current magazine (f. i. the Monthly Magazine, by and for Mecklenburg, or the Political Journal, or the Pastor’s Journal of Halle) I will announce publicly the last final balance of my account, (likewise anything else that the public might be entitled or anxious to know.) V.

* Possibly “interpretation.” Translator’s note.



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