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journal, was accompanied by a private communication to myself, in which the writer entered into a minute and very interesting detail of the circumstances attending the introduction of Sunday School teaching, and which appeared, in my judgment, to substantiate very satisfactorily his previous assertion. The leading facts of his narrative were subsequently confirmed, in a most remarkable manner, by a venerable and talented individual, who was the contemporary and personal friend of Mr. Stock, and who was also intimately acquainted with Mr. Raikes; and I then no longer hesitated to avow my. belief, that to these two gentlemen, conjointly, were the public indebted for the establishment of Sunday Schools.

This conviction, together with the evidence on which it was founded, I recorded in two letters to the editor of the before-mentioned journal; but, in the meantime, two or three other claimants were publicly announced through the same medium, and a farther investigation, on my own part, subsequently elicited the fact, that by none of the parties previously named, either by myself or the other writers on the subject, was the first Sunday School established in this country.

This very unexpected discovery, induced me to send a third letter to the Herald, giving therein all the particulars of the case, as I had gleaned them from sources of the most unexceptionable character; and as no one has since come forward either to question the accuracy of my information, or to claim

precedence for any other person,

I consider the Rev. Theophilus Lindsey (who was then settled at a village in the North Riding of Yorkshire) to be the tacitly acknowledged Founder of the First Sunday School on record.

As the character of the venerable Lindsey is deservedly held in the highest estimation by the entire Unitarian body, perhaps I cannot render the readers of the Pioneer a more acceptable service, than by transcribing the letter containing the interesting details connected with Sunday School teaching, as practised by that great and good man. I will therefore, with your permission, annex it to the present communication,—and am,

Sir, yours respectfully, BIRMINGHAM, June 1, 1841. THOMAS CLARK, Jun.

To the Editor of the Midland Counties Herald. SIR-I owe you many thanks for your kind indul. gence in baving already allowed me to occupy so large a portion of your valuable

space

in the discussion of the above subject; and I should not, probably, have troubled you with

any further remarks, but for the letters of Mr. Havergal and Mr. Turner, in the Herald, of the 6th and 13th instant. I am by no means surprised to learn therefrom, that the plan of Sunday School teaching did not originate either with Mr. Stock or Mr.

Raikes;

but the researches which I have since made, however, have convinced me, that it did not originate with the parties named by your correspondents as having preceded Messrs. Stock and Raikes in their philanthropic labours. the contrary, I have ascertained that the Rev. Theophilus Lindsey, of Catterick, in Yorkshire, (and afterwards of Essex - Street Chapel, London,) took the lead in this benevolent work, as the following extracts from Belsham's Memoirs of Lindsey, and from the Memoirs of Mrs. Catharine Cappe, written by herself, incontestibly prove:

“In the month of November, 1763,” says Mr. Belsham (page 25), “Mr. Lindsey took possession of his vicarage of Catterick, fully determined to seek out and accept of no other preferment, and expecting here quietly to have ended his days, though it pleased God in his providence to order it otherwise. No sooner was he settled in his new situation, than he applied himself with great assiduity, in bis extensive and populous parish, to perform the duties of a parochial minister. He regularly officiated twice on the Sunday in his parish church, and in the interval between the services he catechised the young people.” Mrs. Cappe, in her very interesting autobiography, gives some very pleasing details on this subject; and as she was a frequent visitor at the reverend gentleman's house, at the period referred to, the accuracy of her statement may be relied on. “ At two o'clock," says she, “ before the commencement of the afternoon service, Mr. Lindsey devoted an hour in the church every Sunday, alternately to catechising the children of the parish, and to expounding the Bible to the boys of a large school, which was at that time kept in the village.

The number of the boys generally amounted to about one hundred, who formed a large circle round him; himself holding a Bible open in his hand, with which he walked slowly round, giving it regularly in succession to the boys, each reading, in his turn, the passage about to be explained: this method, accompanied by frequently recapitulating what had been said, and by asking them questions relating to it, kept them very attentive, and the good effects of these labours proved, in many cases, very apparent in after life; Mr. Lindsey having frequently been recognised in the streets of London, by some of his former Sunday pupils, who gratefully acknowledged their obligations to him. After evening service, Mr. Lindsey received different classes of young men and women, on alternate Sundays, in his study, for the purpose of instruction; and Mrs. Lindsey, in like manner, in another apartment, had two classes of children, boys and girls alternately."

In justice to Mrs. Cappe, it ought to be mentioned, that she also was one of those who honourably distinguished themselves in this career of usefulness, long before either Mr. Stock or Mr. Raikes took the field; and perhaps I cannot do better than transcribe her own simple relation of the circumstances:-“ Desirous of being useful,” she remarks, “ I endeavoured to imitate at Bedale, in a manner however imperfect, the example which I so much admired at Catterick. I established a sort of Sunday School there; collecting together a number of poor children, whom I assisted in learning to read, giving them books, &c.; teaching them Dr. Watts's shorter catechism, together with his devotional hymns, and endeavouring to give them such general instruction as might enable them to read their Bible with more intelligence. I had no place in which to receive them but the back kitchen, which being small, we were exceedingly crowded; but they grew attached to me, and liked to attend; and in order to prevent confusion, I divided them into classes, which succeeded each other; so that on the Sunday I was occupied by a succession of children nearly the whole day, except the time which was spent at church.” “I must here mention;" continues Mrs. Cappe, “ that I could not prevail upon any of the young people in the town, the daughters of the tradesmen and others, to contribute in any manner towards my Sunday School. The experiment was quite new, and far from being popular, as these institutions have since happily become; first, by the benevolent exertions of Mr. Raikes, and afterwards, by the countenance and support of many worthy persons, of all sects and parties, throughout the kingdom."-(Vide Mrs. Cappe's Memoirs, p. 100.)

I have thus, Sir, endeavoured to show, that if the idea of Sunday School instruction did not originate with Messrs. Stock and Raikes, as I had myself previously imagined, neither are we indebted for its introduction to Miss Ball, of High Wycombe, as your correspondent, the worthy rector of Astley, supposes. Laudable as were the efforts of these individuals, they were preceded in their labours by the virtuous and benevolent Lindsey, who, conjointly with his estimable and accomplished lady, would

appear to have established the first Sunday School on record. But, as the Rev. Mr. Havergal emphatically and very justly observes, “ Could we see as our Heavenly Father seeth, it is not unlikely that we should discover even other originators of a system which has done so much for our country,” by enlightening the minds of the poor, and thereby enabling them to see in what their truest interest and happiness consists.

I have shown that Mrs. Cappe, of Bedale, in Yorkshire, was not long in following the example of her beloved friends, the Lindseys of Catterick, in the same county, who commenced their labours in 1764: to her succeeded, in 1769, the pious Miss Hannah Ball, of High Wycombe; the latter being followed, in 1775, according to Mr. Turner's statement, by the “humble individual named James Heys," of Little Lever, near Bolton, in Lancashire; then came, in 1780, the Rev. Thomas Stock, of Gloucester, and his friend and coadjutor, Mr. Robert Raikes, the proprietor and editor of the Gloucester Journal. It was reserved for the two latter gentlemen to give that eclat to the scheme, through the medium of the press, which was quickly the means of spreading its benign and salutary influence over the whole kingdom, and which, under the Divine blessing, will “go on conquering and to conquer," till, having

achieved the victory over ignorance, and vice, and misery, a new and brighter era will dawn upon the world, and knowledge, virtue, and happiness, “ will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea. I am, Sir, yours, respectfully,

THOMAS CLARK, Jun. BIRMINGHAM, May 17, 1841.

PROTESTANT POPERY. Deposition of Mr. Wright of Borthwick. “THE General Assembly has deposed Mr. Wright of Borthwick; and, according to their principles, there can be no question they have done rightly. An owl passes an interdict upon light wisely, and a bat upon

the noontide joy; so a congregation of bigots, upon freedom of thought, wisely also (as the fox and the serpent are wise), but not nobly. We undertake no advocacy of Mr. Wright's theological opinions; we only see clearly, from the fact of his deposition, that it is an avowed principle of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland-or at least of the party which now represents the Church-that there shall be no freedom of thought, no private judgment, no PROTESTANTISM, within its precincts. This is enough. It is well that all men should know how this matter stands. The Church of Scotland has publicly renounced Protestantism-Presbyterian Puseyites, blindly sworn to the tradition of the elders and to the fossil theology of an age distinguished for energy certainly in no small degree, but also for narrow-mindedness and intolerance. We have been taught once more a great lesson; we now see what sort of machines, calling themselves men, we have to do with, when we so abuse reason, and nature, and common sense, as to bring them into the field of argument against Scottish Churchmen (as Churchmen now are). These men are sworn to the frozen formula, to the bloodless mummy of what was Christianity--from the life and intellectuality of the thing, they are utterly strangers; think they dare not (at least not speak what they think), and many of them cannot. Et sentire quæ velim et que sentiam dicere, might be a very good motto for an old heathen Roman; but that old spirit of Tacitus

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