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In their contention and spirit they threw over a large box of tools in the river, that I think they never got; and if it had not been that the women were with them, they would have had a more serious time than they had. They were terribly hostile. They drove the natives back that had come down.
Strange to say, these people that live on the river, many of them, don't want the natives in the interior to be enlightened. So Bishop Taylor's parties were turned back, and did not get back for a week. Oh! it was terrible. Poor things, how much they suffered. Finally they all came back to Cape Palmas, and it was weeks before they got to their stations.
Mr. Pratt had to send them overland, and had to pay four dollars a load for carriers; and during that time, many of them had the fever, and some of them died.
The day that they came back across the bar, the bar was rough, and it rained, and most of them got soaking wet, which they should not have done, and that was the cause of so much of their fever and sickness so early. Two families that stopped for a week with Mr. Gibson, a member of the Episcopal Church, Mr. Pratt had to pay ninety-nine dollars for; one man had a wife and two children, and the other a wife and three children, all small children.
At the place where Miss McNeil and Miss Whitfield, and Miss Bowers stayed for a week, they were more reasonable; they only charged forty dollars. And where Miss Wallace and Miss Meeker stayed for a week, they charged, I think it was thirty-five dollars.
Oh! I never went through such a siege in all my life. Bishop Taylor was not there; but I was there through it all, and haven't borrowed a word. This was pioneer work. It is not so, now, I think, for Miss McNeil has nice headquarters at Cape Palmas, and there are several of the missionaries there, so that those who go now have a home till they can go up the river. It was very different at that time; and there's more to follow.
So one can see why the Liberians should feel that establishing schools among the natives by Bishop Taylor, was going to bring them the same trouble. But now since he has got the schools opened, and teachers for the Liberians, as well as natives, they will think differently, and, I trust, feel differently.
During the eight years I spent in Liberia, there were four emigrations to the republic. Three went to Brewerville, and the fourth to Cape Calmas. I went to the receptacle where they were quartered when they first landed, and saw them all, and talked with them; and then visited them at their stations after they were settled.
Some had gone to Cape Mount, and after they had been there a year, I visited several of the families there. I visited others at Brewerville, and at Mount Tubman, Cape Palmas, and at Philadelphia, about three miles from Mount Tubman. I never saw greater suffering and need in my life than there was among these poor new-comers. The only comfortable thing (and that was uncomfortable) was the warm climate; they didn't need much fire,
or warm clothing; but for every other necessary in life that you could mention, they were seriously in need.
At Philadelphia was a very pretty settlement, and it was thickly and well settled at one time; good land all round about, some very good houses, and things were going on pretty well. Mr. Allen Yancy, and his brother, who was killed in the Cape Palmas war, were the leading men who founded that settlement; and at one time it flourished; but was broken up at the time of the Gredebo war, and has never since been what it was before.
When people in Africa are routed by war, they do not settle down quickly to their old homesteads. Poor things! War is not elevating in any country; its effect, morally and socially, and religiously, is not helpful. I think, with the exception of about four out of forty odd, there could not have been found a more helpless and ignorant set of men, women and children, than these emigrants that came while I was there. There were several young men and boys, and girls, ranging in age, I suppose, from ten to eighteen years.
I was down with fever when they arrived, so didn't go to see them for three days. It was quite a little distance from where I was, to the receptacle where they were quartered until they would get their land given them. I had heard a great deal from one and another, for the people called to see them, of course, and talked with them, so as to cheer them, and make them feel at home as much as possible; and when I went, I took a lot of papers, and tracts, and cards, for the children; and, to my surprise, as I went from room to room, and in the hall, as I met young people, and asked them to have a tract or paper, they would say, "I can't read;" so also, the fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters.
There were two old men among them that were preachers. I went into one room, and the old man was sitting on a stool, with the Bible on an old trunk reading aloud, evidently for me to hear; so I went up and stood by him and listened.
"Well, Pa," I said, in a familiar way, "you seem to be enjoying yourself reading the good book."
He looked up, kind of dignified, as though I had broken the charm that was upon him; then went on reading again.
"Sit down," a woman said.
"I have called to see you," I said, "you have had many calls, I suppose, but I have not been here before."
The old man read on. But of all the murdering of the king's English you ever heard, that old man was guilty of it. "Dat's my husband. He's a preacher," said the old lady, with a smile of comfort. "I can't read myself, but I likes to hear him when he reads."
Then I said to the old man, "Pa, how long have you been preaching?"
"I has been preaching de Gospel near 'bout forty years," said he, looking up.
"Yes," I said, "so long? Well, I just came in to see you a little while. I would like to sing a little song for you, and pray; then I must go."
So I began to sing, and a number of others came in; and I prayed, and went on to the next point.
After I had spent about two hours this way, I went home, crying all the way; knowing the need, as I did, both of the Liberians and the natives, I knew that this lot of people could not help any of them, but would certainly need help themselves; for I saw they knew but little about how to manage at home; and now what would they do in this strange country among strangers.
Of course, they would meet kindness; that goes so far; but that would not feed them, or clothe them; and those that were able to work, and willing, could not get the work to do, perhaps, the kind that they would do in this country; for men and women in this country can turn their hand to most anything, and there is almost everything to turn their hand to; but there, there is no driving, and trucking, and farming, like there is here; and making roads and building bridges, and harvesting, and hod carrying, nothing like there is in this country, that they had been used to; and the most of the work that is done there, is done by the natives, and native wages are paid, in trade—cloth, tobacco, fish, or rice. And there is not a black man at Cape Palmas, I mean a Liberian man, (without it is Bishop Ferguson, he might), who could have hired six of these new emigrants, and paid them fifty cents a day in good money, not Liberian currency, but good, American money, and fed them three meals a day for six months.
This may seem strange; but I don't fear the slightest contradiction from any real upright, honest, man or woman.
Now here were these poor men with their families. The Colonization Society gives them what they call "rations," for six
THE RECEPTACLE FOR EMIGRANTS, MONROVIA.
months. By that time they are supposed to have got started, and have their houses built, or shanties, for this is about all that would be built, and no matter for that, if they were only good shanties; but a good, native house is far more desirable.
Six months goes round very fast in Liberia, and in the huddled together manner in which they go on the vessel and the huddled together manner in which they are quartered in the receptacle where they are waiting to have their land assigned to them, many of them go down with fever. Besides, not being very valiant for bathing and making themselves clean, as the natives are, and, all considered, at the end of six months they worse off than ever. They have traded off their meat, or flour, or cloth, that they have brought, some for medicine, some for a fowl, or something to help them while they are sick; and some of the people with whom they dwell have learned the art of living on these new-comers, and greenhorns. But the government is not to blame for that, any more than this United States is to blame for a man's being what is called a "sharper."
Then there are large boys and girls who cannot read or spell; neither can their parents; so these boys and girls go to school, and the children laugh at them, being almost young men and women, and saying, a, b, c; then they are ashamed to go, and their parents do not insist on it. They simply say:
"Well, I got on without any l'arnin', and if I have got on without any l'arnin', you children can get on the same."
In the course of a year or two, these fourteen and fifteen-year-old boys are pretty well on to men; and in a little while they are into politics. They cannot read or write.
Then among the young girls; some of them are very nice looking, and they will be married, for they are bound to marry in any event. Now, if the Colonization Society would send a good teacher with them, with books, so they might have school on the voyage, and then teach them for six months or a year after they get there, they would be better prepared to go into the schools. For, poor as they are there, they are high-toned for people who have never been to school.
In that way they would help; for a government that does not seek in every way to educate and instruct and enlighten its people, has a poor hope of long existence. It cannot go on perpetuating ignorance, and succeed.
I have heard of the Colonization Society's sometimes sending books with the emigrants; but, as a general thing, they are of the higher grade, and the agents hold them at such a high figure that only a few are able to get them.
When I saw this need I would have gladly gone every day myself, or have hired some one, to teach these children during the six months they were at the receptacle. But then there was not a spelling book or a primer to be had anywhere. There are no book stores, or stationery shops, where anything of that kind can be obtained. And for the sick, no dispensaries, no doctors, no hospitals, and not even a county poorhouse, as there is in this country.
I have gone to see many of them when they were sick, and suffering from great sores caused by a little insect called the chigoe flea, and they have said if they had some salve that they used at home, and knew about, it would help them. But it was not to be had there. Then there were herbs they knew at home, that were good for fevers; but they did not know the herbs in Africa, and if they got them they must pay for them.
Now, at home, in their own land, if they were ever so poor, they could help themselves in these little things; but in Africa they were really helpless. I wept for them, because I knew it, and could not help them.
Last March, when I met an emigration in New York of some forty odd, who had sacrificed their little farms, and what little they did have together, and were going to Africa to get rich forthwith, I tried to tell them what to take with them. I told them (for they had a nice company of boys and girls with them): "See to it that you send your children to school, such as there are there. If you haven't got school books, be sure you take a good supply. Make your children go to school. If they won't go, flog them. If you do not take books from here, you will not be able to get them in Liberia."
I told them all this and tried to help them all I could. The white people were very kind to them.
We did all we could in the church to take care of them the two weeks before they got off. But they mistook my meaning, poor things, and when they got to Liberia, they told them I had run down the country, and said there was nobody in Liberia fit for them to associate with, and made a terrible time;
when what I had said to them was just the opposite; it was for them to get into a position to be what they expected to be as soon as they got there.
But spending eight years in Africa among the people, and being known as I was known, and knowing them as I did know them, some of them were prepared to judge about what I did say.
Only a little while ago, I heard that some of these very ones, all that could get back, had come back.
If there was a hospital where they could be cared for, if for only a short time, it would not be so bad. But, there is no such thing anywhere in the republic of Liberia, or was, not while I was there, or ever had been. There was one talked of at Monrovia for five years; and they went so far as getting a lot, and laying the foundation; some of the timbers had been gathered, and had lain on the ground during the rainy season, which damaged them greatly; so that if it was ever built, till the work that was done five years ago, would have to be done over again. How have they got on without these essentials all these years? Echo answers, "How?"
I do not know if the Colonization Society thinks so or not; but most of the white people think, and some colored people, too, I am afraid, especially those who go as emigrants, that all the Americo-Liberians are on perfect equality with each other in all their social relations; and that, because they are a colored republic and an independent colored government, that they are all as one. But they never made a greater mistake; for in that republic there is grade and caste among them almost equal to that that is found among the upper-ten colored folks in America. So that the ignorant emigrant does not strike the highest and best grade of society when he first gets there.
That class stands off, and waits to see what he is; and the intelligent an better class of natives, as well. So they do not find companionship readily, or any sooner than the Italian, Jew, German, or Irish find companionship or society with the native-born American, and it is all nonsense for white people, or black people, to think any such thing.
I never knew what real, black aristocracy was until I was in Lagos and Sierra Leone. In Lagos I have seen as fine a turnout as I have seen on Fifth Avenue, New York; coachman and footman dressed in English costume; black ladies and gentlemen riding
on horseback, and driving in buggies. Their houses are furnished in tiptop English style.
There were very many black merchants in Lagos and Sierra Leone; their sons and daughters, many of them, are educated in England, Germany and France.
I have heard it said that in Sierra Leone some of the ministers are better Greek and Hebrew scholars than some of their bishops that were over them.
There is one thing that the Methodist Church in America is ahead on, and that is, there is more of a spirit of real consecration for missionary work among the Christian women in America than I found in England. In Lagos, in different places where the Wesleyans have large, fine mission houses, beautiful grounds, fine churches, boys' high school, girls' high school, they have the ministers, but not their wives.
They say they cannot live there; so while the ministers are in Africa— the part where I was—their wives are in England. But the Episcopals have high schools for boys and for girls, and a white lady principal and teachers for the girls' school, as well as men for the boys' school. Conservatism and denominational distinctions are very prominent. But they were all kind to me at Lagos, God bless them.
Before I close this chapter I will give a very brief account of a black heroine, who deserves this notice for the work she has done, and is doing in Africa.
Miss Susan Collins, the only colored student who has ever entered the Chicago Training School, and one of the noblest ladies that has left that institution for the foreign field, went to Africa in 1887, where she is at present laboring in Bishop Taylor's work, in Angola.
She has charge of a little sub-station, supported by Pungo Andongo station, and has started an infant training school.
No more faithful and self-denying missionary can be found anywhere than dear Susan Collins. I want to give place to this very interesting item for my own people, and also that others may see that there are colored women who can cope with any of the opposite race for real stick-to-itiveness and self-sacrifice and endurance. She has never left her post since she went to Africa, and has stood the climate well. God has wonderfully preserved her in health and strength, and has made a great woman of her.
I met her first with the party that went down the Congo. I went with them as far as Old Calabar; and of all the party, of sixteen or more, I perceived in Susie Collins, timber that meant something. She was a woman who had been well raised and well trained; she had good, broad, common sense, and knew how to do a little of about everything; she was patient, and of a happy, genial disposition: of high moral character and sturdy piety.
These are the qualifications that will generally stand the heavy pull in Africa. May God bless her, and continue to make her a blessing.
LETTERS AND TESTIMONIALS—BISHOP TAYLOR—CHURCH AT MONROVIA—UPPER CALDWELL—SIERRA LEONE—GREENVILLE CAPE PALMAS—BAND OF HOPE TEMPERANCE SOCIETY AT MONROVIA LETTERS—MRS. PAYNE—MRS. DENMAN—MRS. INSKIP—REV. EDGAR M. LEVY—ANNIE WITTENMYER—DR. DORCHESTER —MARGARET BOTTOME — MISS WILLARD—LADY HENRY SOMERSET.
Before I dismiss the subject of Africa, where I spent eight years of labor in the service of the Master, I wish to present a few miscellaneous papers—testimonials, letters, etc.—as specimens of the many that I have received from those who have known me, and my work, there and elsewhere.
It is not from motives of vanity that I do this, but because I am sure that my readers will be interested in the testimony of some whose names, for the most part, are familiar to the entire Christian world; and of others who, though not so well known, were on the ground and personally acquainted with my work in Africa.
I have many letters from Bishop William Taylor, of whom I have had something to say in the preceding chapters, but I withhold all but the following, which may serve as a sort of general introduction, although it was written simply as a letter of commendation to Ex-President Payne, of Liberia:
James S. Payne, Ex-President of Liberia.
MY DEAR BROTHER:—This will introduce to your acquaintance our beloved sister, Mrs. Amanda Smith. As you may know, Sister Amanda is one of the most remarkable evangelists of these eventful days in which we live. She is a member of our church, and well accredited, and everywhere owned of God in America, England and India, as a marvelous, soul-saving worker for the Lord Jesus.
I heard you pleading for Liberia at our recent general Conference. Your prayer will be answered in a great revival of God's work in Liberia, through the agency of Sister Amanda, with the working concurrence of your churches.
I am sure you will do all you can to open her way. God bless you all. Amen.
Your brother in Jesus,
MONROVIA, July 10, 1889.
Mrs. Amanda Smith, Evangelist.
DEAR SISTER:—Now, upon the eve of your departure from us, after a sojourn of eight years, we feel it highly becoming us (and it affords us great pleasure to do so), to accord to you this tribute of respect and appreciation, as a testimonial of your untiring labors among us as a Christian evangelist; of the purity of your doctrines, the earnestness of their enforcement, of the clearness of their illustration, and of the wonderful and happy results which have followed. These all you leave behind you as enduring monuments of your zeal for the Master, and of your unabated love for humankind; and we do accept it, that your mission to Africa has been from GOD.
Your life among us during these years of your sojourn, has been an even one, and one of untarnished moral and Christian rectitude and earnestness, nor needs any further defense, other than what it has borne along with itself, for it speaks for itself.
And this is the testimony of all honest hearts throughout Liberia. The children of Belial here, may rise up to asperse your fame, and to sully the lustre of your name, which they so much covet, but this were a vain attempt. And we accept it as a complete refutation of the theory emphasized by some, in their ignorance of the real character of the Negro at home, that white missionaries are preferred by them. The responsibility of such a theory rests solely on those who originate and sustain it.
Your extensive travels throughout the length and breadth of our land, your free and liberal intercourse and labors among all classes, civilized and heathen, Christian and Pagan, and the universal hospitalities extended to you, show but too plainly, when compared with the welcome and entertainment given our white brother, that the theory above mentioned is not so tenable as they have vainly and ignorantly supposed. With the Negro at home
in his native wilds, when untrammelled and unsophisticated by unfavorable contact with the dominant race,
"A man's a man for a' that."
The higher plane of Christian experience, as preached by you, in its distinctiveness and definiteness, is a doctrine purely Scriptural; a doctrine recognized and enjoyed under all ages of the church. It first blazed forth from the altar upon which "Abel by faith offered a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain." In equal lustre it shone in Enoch, who, "By faith was translated that he should not see death." And then, in righteous Noah, who, "By faith being warned of things to come, not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared the ark to the saving of his house." And all along the line, through the patriarchal, Mosaic, and prophetic ages, it blazed from the altar in an unbroken series. And then, under the fuller illumings of the Holy Ghost, since the advent of the blessed Savior, it was the theme of the Apostolic and primitive Christians. The middle ages, though an age of terror and of gross darkness, still preserved it in good tact, and transmitted it to the present age, baptized in fire and blood.
And we rejoice that it is our privilege to say that, though not so much in its definiteness and distinctiveness as preached by Christian evangelists in other lands, and by you in this land, in these latter years: yet, it was the doctrine preached, and lived, by many of the first founders of the church in this country, long anterior to this day. And while the zeal of the church in Liberia in its more universal proclamation and enforcement had abated, yet it was always hailed by many, as the central idea of Christianity and of Methodism. And your happy arrival to these shores served only to stir up the dying embers of a fire that had long since been kindled by the earlier Christians. We hail your arrival among us, therefore, as opportune and gracious, because, God appointed.
Return, Sister Evangelist, to your home, and friends, and loved ones, from whom you have long been separated. You need rest, for your toil has been long and unremitting. Rest in the assurance that you have done some good—how much none can tell; eternity alone will reveal. Rest in the assurance that many bear grateful and prayerful remembrance of you, and shall ever. Rest in the assurance that your motives will sufficiently apologize
for, and excuse, any blunders you may have committed, in your zeal and push for the Master.
And now may the God of all grace grant you many years added to your life, and still greater peace. And when your sun goes down in the west, may it be without a cloud. Amen.
[Signed by the Pastor, Assistant Pastor and the Stewards and Leaders of the M. E. Church in Monrovia.]
UPPER CALDWELL, LIBERIA, July 16, 1889.
DEAR SISTER AMANDA SMITH:—Please allow us also, your little Sister Caldwell, second in the train in the point of birth, to bid you good-bye, as an assurance of our good will toward you, and also of our high estimation of your Christian character, and of your earnestness and untiring effort to preach a pure doctrine, and to lift up the standard of holiness.
Our fathers preached this, they lived this, and died this. They inculcated the idea of a holy life, as the central idea of Methodism, and laid it down as the corner stone and basis of Bible doctrines. And we hail it as an undeniable fact, that while there has been some declension among us from this base line of Gospel truth, yet there never was a time since the founding of the church in this country, when there were not witnesses, living, practical witnesses, to its truth. Not recognized possibly so much under the several titles as now preached by evangelists throughout Christendom in these latter days, as in its essence and power.
From the first of your arrival among us, you began to give your trumpet this certain sound, and its echoes have gone all over the land. The churches have felt the renewed impulse, and under its inspiration have moved on apace.
You have this testimonial also from us, that of the many who have come among us as missionary workers from the Mother Church of America, none have been more truly welcome, none more zealous, none more untiring than yourself, and returning to their home across the waters, have carried with them kindlier feelings, or more grateful, than you do now. And we wish to God that we could accord to others residing among us as missionaries, the tribute we now accord to you, a tribute of unselfishness, and of purity of life—uninfluenced by mercenary motives. And now, finally, "good-bye," my dear sister. May you have a pleasant and safe voyage back to your home and friends, and may many more
years be added to your already useful life, in the enjoyment of restored health, and of increased peace, is the prayer of
Yours, in the Lord,
H. B. CAPEHART, Pastor.
J. D. A. SCOTT, Assistant.
THOMAS H. CLARK, Lay Preacher.
F. T. CLARK, Steward.
DEAR MADAME:—We, the undersigned members, on behalf of the above church, and all the Christian public who are interested in our mission, beg most respectfully to forward you this address as a sure testimonial from a gratified society, that has had the pleasure of your visit, and among whom you have been laboring with unwearied zeal, for the short time you have been in Sierra Leone.
We cannot fully express ourselves as we would. We hope you should not think that we are flattering you, whilst we are declaring our sentiments; because we are candid in doing so; and we trust we are cautiously avoiding the use of any expression that will bear any resemblance to it. When the Rev. J. R. Frederick announced to us, shortly before your arrival, that you had kindly given your consent to come and labor amongst us, he spoke very much of your zeal, labors, and travels, in very many places. In our opinion, so far as our eyes have seen, and ears heard, we can say of you, that "the half was never told." In every respect, the information is correct.
We need not tell you that all have been greatly satisfied with your discourses. The great number of people that used to attend your services, will prove to you, that by all means, so far as outward successes are concerned, you have not failed in your work. We believe that God has answered your prayers in that way—you have been casting your net on the side of the ship, that Christ ordered; and you have gathered fishes.
The number of those who were willing to give up their sins, and with whom you have been wrestling in prayer for awhile for the help of the Holy Spirit, will also convince you of the success of your labor. Long after you shall have left these shores, the effects of your visit will still be felt.
We are thankful to Almighty God that we are privileged to witness the fulfilment of the prophecy of Joel, that, "It shall come
to pass in the last days, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy," etc., etc.
We thank you also for the interest you have taken on behalf of the poor heathen in the adjacent rivers, where you have been laboring with so many disadvantages. We are also thankful to God that you have testified that your labor has not been in vain— the Lord has had mercy, on those on whom he will have mercy.
We are thankful, also, for your reproving the prevailing sins of the times, viz.: Superstition, adultery, drunkenness, slander, pride, disobedience to parents, hypocrisy in religion, sinful indulgences, etc., etc. We are very sorry that we are not composed of richer classes of people, who will cast in of their abundance to the treasury, as a donation for your services, but we trust that of our penury, the little amount realized from us and the generous public, will be received by you as Christ received the widow's two mites.
We feel very sorry to say to you, good-bye; but such is life. We hope and trust that though we meet here to part again, yet in Heaven we shall meet to part no more. We pray that God may raise up your successor, as he raised up Joshua before the death of Moses, to carry the souls to Canaan whom you have left by the way; and that a double portion of your spirit may rest upon her.
God Almighty bless you with many and happy days; that as His Heavenly hand has enriched you with many singular and extraordinary graces, you may be the wonder of the world in these latter days for happiness and true felicity; and that the everlasting doors will give way for the entrance of your soul with Christ in Paradise, on the other side of the grave, is the prayer of
YOUR BRETHREN AND SISTERS IN CHRIST.
[Signed by the Pastor and the entire membership of the church and Sabbath School, and accompanied by a testimonial amounting to over a hundred dollars.]
GREENVILLE, SINOE Co., AFRICA.
To the Christian Churches wherever established.
DEAR BRETHREN, SISTERS AND FRIENDS OF JESUS— Hallelujah! to the lamb forever. Amen!
This comes as a recognition of the wonderful work of God in our country through that most worthy and faithful handmaiden of His, the sainted evangelist, Sister Amanda Smith.
This sister crime to this country in the year 1882, laboring in Montserrado and Grand Bassa Counties as an Evangelist.
In the month of November, 1882, she came to Sinoe County, where she began with much zeal the evangelical works of her Lord; landing here in Greenville on Sabbath morning, four o'clock, November 17th, 1883, she gave an exhortation that evening in the Methodist Episcopal Church. Then began the working of the Lord in this county.
Her first object was Gospel Temperance. After preaching a series of sermons she succeeded in organizing in Greenville a society, or Band of Hope, Gospel Temperance. She next organized a similar society in the townships of Lexington, Louisiana, Bluntsville, and Farmersville. About three or four hundred have now become temperance signers, including men, women, and children. Many are saved from a drunkard's grave, because there are in this number many who are real; nay, they would taste death before violating their pledge. Glory to God for this salvation! Amen!
Not satisfied with this alone, she began to cry, secondly, that without holiness of heart no man can see God in peace. She earnestly insisted on holiness, assuring those who were justified by faith the possibility of living holy lives on earth. The people began to seek a closer union with God. Sister Smith's prayers for holiness were real, earnest, and faithful. God heard, God saw, God moved!
In the month of May, 1884, the holy fire began to fall. It fell first by degrees in Lexington, then in copious showers. Next in showers it began to fall in Louisiana, in Bluntsville, finally in Greenville, and elsewhere. In the month of September a Holiness Camp Meeting was held, at which meeting a National Holiness Camp Meeting was organized, and at this place upwards of one hundred professed sanctification to the Lord, and are living for Christ alone, and are prepared to die for Christ, if need be.
Wherefore, in consideration of the wonderful works of God through our evangelist and worthy sister, and in consideration of her departure from us; therefore,
Resolved, 1st. That we recognize the wonderful works of God through this sainted evangelist, and her much faithfulness to God, and her Godly walks and Christian examples before us; and that the Lord truly sent her to Africa.
Resolved, 2nd. That we, on behalf of ourselves, and the Christian Church of which we are members, tender her our sincere thanks for her labor of love, and a high appreciation of her Christian society, assuring her of the deep sense of our feeling of sadness on account of her departure, and our sincerity and continuance in prayers to God for her protection and support wherever His Spirit may lead her.
Resolved, 3rd. That we recommend Sister Amanda Smith to the most favorable consideration of the pastors and members of the Christian Churches wherever she may go as a workman of God in reality.
Resolved, 4th. That we recommend her now unto God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, now, and forever. Amen.
In witness whereof, we have hereunto set our names officially.
WILLIAM P. KENNEDY, JR., Preacher in charge of the
Greenville Circuit, and Presiding Elder of Sinoe District.
S. D. MAYSON, Deacon Baptist Church, Lexington.
JOHN L. FULLER, Steward and Leader M. E. Church, Greenville.
Z. B. ROBERTS, Local Preacher M. E. Church, Greenville.
J. W. BONNER, Local Preacher.
W. E. HARRIS, of Congregational Church, Greenville.
H. B. BROWN, Leader and Steward M. E. Church.
ALLEN PEAL, Local Preacher.
J. N. LEIN, Sup't Presbyterian S. S., Sinoe County.
GEO. B. DUNBAR.
Z. T. GREENE, Superintendent Sabbath School, Greenville.
R. P. MAYSON, Local Preacher, Lexington.
H. C. BIRCH.
LIBERIA, Dec. 17th, 1886.
God sends blessings, often, to communities and nations through feeble instrumentalities. When angels, the higher order of created beings are not employed, the message comes to us through earthen vessels—frail mortality.
Divine Providence has seen fit, of late, to visit these Liberian counties, through a female instrumentality, in the person of Mrs. Amanda Smith, the elect lady Evangelist of the Methodist denomination of America.
Her efforts among us at Cape Palmas, have, under the Divine Head, had no precedent in this county. The doctrine of Christian holiness has been most beautifully explained by her own Christian walks and teachings; and the result has been an addition of scores of members to the various Christian denominations of this county.
After an impartial examination of her teachings, and duly comparing them with the sacred Scriptures, we find them in perfect harmony with Scripture doctrines.
May her life be prolonged to preach Christ and Him crucified to the multitudes, who yet sit in the regions of darkness, as well as to explain the most wholesome doctrine of sanctification for the spiritual benefit of those who are already justified by faith. And may the Holy Ghost accompany her, and illuminate her mind more and more, unto the perfect day. Please receive this tribute of Christian respect, as a parting farewell from many who may never see you again in this life; and may the blessing of God rest upon you always. Amen.
[Signed by the Officers and Members of the M. E. Church at Cape Palmas.]
MONROVIA, LIBERIA, W. AFRICA, July 17, 1889.
THE BAND OF HOPE TEMPERANCE SOCIETY OF MONROVIA have heard with regret of the intended departure, in a few days, of Mrs. Amanda Smith from among us. They feel that it is but due to her to place on record the fact, that Gospel Temperance has had in her a faithful and untiring advocate and worker ever since her arrival in the Republic. In this, and other sections of the country, she interested many influential young men and women in the temperance cause, and everywhere utilized them as the founders and supporters of the Band of Hope. She leaves behind her a strong, temperance sentiment, which, under God, can, and we trust, will do much to paralyze and extirpate the curse of strong drink.
The band of Hope feels it also its duty to note the fact that Mrs. Amanda Smith has done her best to raise the standard of
religious life and aspirations among the people of this country. In wishing her farewell and God speed, it expresses the hope that she may long be enabled to continue to bring in sheaves for the Master, and that her work may everywhere have abundant and fruitful success with the seal of the Holy Spirit.
The Band of Hope is having prepared an album, containing photographic views and portraits of places and persons in Liberia and West Africa, which it begs that Mrs. Smith will accept as a reminder of her visit to West Africa, and as a slight token of their appreciation of her efforts and labors while in this region of the Dark Continent.
H. W. TRAVIS, Pres. Band of Hope, No. 3, Monrovia.
ISAAC J. MOORT, Rec. Sec'y Band of Hope Temperance Society, No. 3, of Monrovia.
I gladly place on record the letters that follow, not only because of the kind appreciation of myself and my work expressed in them, but in the hope that they may prove a blessing to those who read them. The first is from Mrs. Martha Payne, sister-in-law of ex-President Payne, of Liberia; the second is from Mrs. Mary R. Denman, of Newark, N. J., of whom I have also spoken in a former chapter; and the third, from Mrs. Inskip, whose husband was so well known through out the Christian world as a leader in the Holiness Movement. She also has been greatly honored of God in the same blessed evangelism.
A letter to Mrs. Amanda Smith.
MONROVIA, June 19, 1883.
My DEAR SISTER:—In compliance with your request I now conclude to give my religious experience. I was converted at the age of fifteen. The greater part of the time I was in darkness, because I did not have a daily witness of the Spirit. I believed that a Christian was to have a daily witness as a child of God. I had a fear of God hid in my heart, but no lasting joy, and this caused me much uneasiness. Sometimes I would doubt my conversion. Resolve after resolve was made to be true and steadfast, but I found I was utterly helpless.
My temper gave me much trouble, and caused me often to neglect my prayer. Then I would be filled with doubts and
fears, and in a state of oscillation continually. As the cares of the family increased I sought for sanctification so as to be steadfast. I did not receive it, and became very dark. I lived only with the fear of God. Then a restlessness took hold of me, impatient to be freed from sin. As I prayed for grace and faith the hidden evils of my heart were made known. Then I resolved to look to Christ, and grew in grace, taking for my comfort the promise, "They that seek diligently shall find." I often read my Bible, and tried to cast my burden on the Lord, because I had learned to trust him through difficulties. The Spirit drew me and I followed on to know the Lord.
I had read "Upham's Interior Life." I was much encouraged and endeavored to be submissive to all things. Then I had severe trial, and my heart was much burdened. I arose at midnight and submitted all to God. From that time I was kept steady and more willing to acknowledge myself a follower of Christ than ever. About two years after, Mrs. Amanda Smith came to Monrovia and preached holiness. I was anxious to get light on the subject. I paid attention to all that was said. After her second discourse she called for persons to come forward to seek sanctification. I wanted to he sanctified; promised myself to seek quietly to grow into the blessed experience, and say nothing about it to anyone, for I had learned that great would be the gloom if the blessing was not found. Some months after, Mrs. Smith commenced her work again. Sickness weakened her so that she was unable to work as she desired. In December she commenced Bible reading every day. I gave all attention to her instruction, and did not allow her to know that I sought the blessing, notwithstanding my home was her home. In her instructions she gave us to know that we must be definite in our request to God. I had an aversion to the word "sanctification," and prayed all around it. Finally the middle wall of partition fell, and I was willing to utter the words, "Lord, sanctify me." I yielded all, and a stillness of soul followed for three days. I was determined to stand until light was given. The stillness was broken while I calmly sought, before retiring for the night, with these words: "The blood of Jesus Christ, His son cleanseth from all sin." It was reasoned with such force that I assented audibly, "Yes, it is so, because the word of God says so. The heavens and the earth shall pass away before one jot or title of His Word shall fail." My heart replied: "Yes, because the Word
says so, and when Jesus Christ said it is finished, a full salvation was complete." Then, with all the earnestness of my soul, I said: "Lord, you know, now let the Spirit witness with the blood and apply it to my heart." Then I felt a sinking sensation pass through me. I fell to my knees to pray, but my prayers were turned to praise and thanks to Jesus. My soul was filled with humility, and my eyes with tears. My faith was established in Christ, my soul was quickened into new life, and I viewed Jesus Christ by faith as I never did before, with the promise, "I will abide with you." And no sooner did I confess openly that my soul was cleansed from sin, than it seemed to me, my whole being was changed anew. Glory to Jesus! I am saved! And ever since the twelfth of December, I have the witness within, and the way is more clear as I move on.
Your sister in Jesus Christ,
The first time I ever saw this sister, Mrs. Amanda Smith, was in 1870, at a time that I, having a hungry soul, had learned that a party, called "Higher Life Christians," were holding meetings in the Y. M. C. A. rooms in our city.
I went to them to learn if they had something that would suit my case. At the first meeting I heard a brother giving his experience of the rest of faith, God had given him. At once I thought this was just what I wanted. So I followed them to one of their evening meetings, that was held in the Franklin Street Methodist Church.
Early in the meeting a colored woman arose, and began to speak and sing. I was disgusted, that a woman should be allowed to speak, and a colored woman at that, and felt she should be requested to sit down. But soon I became interested in what she was saying, and enjoyed her sweet songs, and at once felt that I wanted the same faith that that woman had.
From that time I sought something of the same kind, and found Dr. Palmer's meeting. Fifteenth Street, New York. There I heard other men and women give their experience, which taught me a great deal.
At last a colored woman, sitting the second seat from me, dressed in plain Quaker dress, arose (after a man from Ohio had
spoken and thanked God for the light that had come into his soul during that meeting) and gave thanks to God for His answer to prayer in giving that soul to her in that meeting.
I have often thought since it was my soul that was given to her at that time, for after she sat down I felt I wanted her prayers, and putting by all my prejudice (I had lived in the South many years), in asking a colored person to pray for me, I reached my hand to her and asked her prayers. She turned to me, as I thought, very coldly, and said: "What do you want?"
I had made a more full consecration of myself during that meeting, and now knew just what I wanted, and said, in answer: "I want bodily strength to do God's will." She said, "I will." And for the glory of God, I wish to give my testimony that I have had more bodily strength ever since. I did not know then that this woman was the same one I had heard speak in Franklin Street Church, for at that time she had not given up her irons, and wash tubs, and was dressed in her wash-woman's garb.
When I saw her the third time, it was at Sea Cliff Camp Meeting, when I was glad to tell her of the answer to her prayers for me.
After passing through the ten days' meeting, without receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit (having been brought up an Episcopalian, and not understanding the especial need of a clean heart, and this especial baptism), the dear Lord was very good to me, and came to me in the night with deep questions to my soul, that I could not answer in my own strength, and knowing that Amanda Smith was in the next tent, and had just come in from a late meeting, I called her, and she came in and knelt down beside me, asking what my trouble was. She prayed with me, and made me fully to understand that our Heavenly Father would not ask anything of me that He would not give me strength to do, and that all He wanted of me was to say "I will" to Him.
When I fully understood this, it took all my will power to say "I will" to God, for I knew it was no light thing to do, for it was to be "I will" to Him for the rest of my life. But when the "I will" was said, the power came, and she sang that beautiful hymn,
"'Tis done, the great transaction's done,
I am the Lord's, and He is mine."
I can never tell that great peace that came to my soul at that time, and down in the depths of my soul has remained. The
upper surface may be ruffled, as the ocean often is; but down below the surface the undying peace remains.
Dear reader, I am glad to give my testimony to the power God has given our dear sister, Amanda, to bring souls to Him, and to help them on to keep steady before Him, until He can finish His work of redemption in them. He is no respecter of persons, and is as willing to-day to give the baptism of the Holy Spirit to every soul who will come to Him in lowliness of heart, and ask Him for this blessing, and believe that He will give it. Wait for it. It will surely come, and you will be happy. When done with the up-and-down old Christian life, sinning and repenting, you will look to Jesus, moment by moment, for His guidance, which He will surely give, and then you call say to the Tempter when he comes (for he will never leave us while in the body), in Jesus' own words, "Get thee behind me, Satan." Jesus will open your spiritual vision when He comes in to dwell, and you will recognize the temptations of Satan from the blessed leadings of the Holy Spirit.
Respectfully submitted, praying God's blessing upon these few words.
MARY R. DENMAN, Newark, N. J.
2002 BRANDYWINE ST.,
PHILADELPHIA, PA., Dec. 22, 1887.
MY DEAR, DEAR SISTER SMITH:—Your precious letter came to hand, and it was too good to keep; I had it published in the "Standard," so your many friends would also enjoy it. It did my soul good to hear from you; many thanks for the same.
The beautiful tribute paid to my now sainted husband by you, was appreciated by me. My dear one often said he thanked God that he was the instrument, in God's hands, of bringing you into this beautiful light of full salvation, or entire sanctification. That day, at "Old Green Street," was never forgotten by my dear husband, and he spoke of it all around the world.
God has made you "A flame of fire" in this and other lands, and my dear husband rejoiced in the glorious work God enabled you to do, and he used to say, "Praise the Lord, Amanda Smith's success is mine."
Oh! with what interest he would watch every move you made.
He, with myself, felt anxious for you to go to Africa. My dear husband often would say: "That will be Sister Smith's crowning glory."
I have no doubt his spirit has been very near you as you have been pushing the battle. Bless the Lord for the glorious victories won.
I often feel that my dear one is looking over the "battlements of glory," waiting to welcome me into that mansion of glory prepared for us. Oh! Sister Smith, what a meeting, when the redeemed ones shall return and come to Zion, with songs and everlasting joy. I think I can almost hear the anthem of praise unto Him that hath loved us, and given Himself for us. To Him be glory and praise forever and forever. Glory! Glory!
My darling sister, God has wonderfully given me physical strength and spiritual enduement for the work he has called me to do. I promised God, around the casket of my dear one, I would give to Him all the strength He gave me in work.
You know my husband was a wonderful leader; strong and fearless, yet very loving. I have heard Bishop Simpson and Bishop Harris say he was the grandest leader to marshal the forces and lead them into battle they ever knew. I have often wondered why God took him and left me; but I know He is too wise to err, and too good to be unkind; so I must leave all with Him. What I do not know now, I will know in the sweet by and by.
God has helped me as never before. After coming from Ocean Grove, where I was kept busy with work, I attended the Holiness Convention in Wilmington four days. It was a wonderful meeting. Souls converted and sanctified. Brothers Thompson, Pepper, Gray, Smith, Todd, Mrs. Kenney, Nettie Van Name, Clara Boyd and mother, Mrs. Blackston, Bangs and myself went from Philadelphia. Orr, Smith, Kenney, Boyd and Van Name stayed the following week. I had to leave. I had an engagement with Rev. S. E. Searles, in Brooklyn, two weeks. God did reveal. Himself in the salvation of the people. Glory to God! We often spoke of you.
I had to leave in two weeks to fill an engagement at Wilmington, Del. I was there nine days. Over fifty converted; forty-three united with the church. Twenty were entirely sanctified, and twenty men and women (unsaved sinners) arose at the close and asked us to pray for them. The meeting we could not close till half past ten. Last Saturday will never be forgotten by the people present.
I have to leave on Monday morning to get ready to go South, where I am engaged, if my health holds out. I shall start for Florida in a few days. If the Lord brings you home we shall hail your coming with delight.
Brother and Sister Thompson, where I am stopping, say you must remember this is one of your homes. They unite with in much love to you. I will also say I shall welcome you to my cottage at Ocean Grove when I am at home. God bless you abundantly with the riches of His grace.
I am glad Bishop Taylor is doing such glorious work for Africa. How my soul goes out for that Dark Continent. I am glad God has used you. Praise the Lord for the work you have been able through God's grace to do. God is blessing Sister Kenney, Lizzie Smith and others in the work. All your friends send lots of love to you. God bless you forever. Love to all the saints.
Your loving sister,
MRS. J. S. INSKIP.
I have sent you the "Missionary Review,"
and paid for it myself one year.
The following letters from Rev. Edgar M. Levy, Annie Wittenmyer, Dr. Daniel Dorchester, Margaret Bottome, Bob, Miss Frances E. Willard and Lady Isabel Somerset, respectively, are personal, but will, no doubt, be read with interest;
MANCHESTER, N. H., Feb. 2, 1890.
MY VERY DEAR SISTER:—I learn through the papers that you are now in London. I am real glad that you are that much nearer to us —the many friends who wait to greet you. Let me thank you for the kind word you write of me, which I see in the "Standard" this week. I sincerely reciprocate your kind wishes, and hope soon to see you and renew our sweet fellowship of bygone years.
I have written you several times while you were in Africa, but I have received no answer. In the last two communications I informed you that you might draw on me for two hundred dollars. Not hearing from you, I concluded that you had decided not to do so until your arrival in England, and your readiness to embark for America. I have now in my care $214.21 awaiting your pleasure. If you will inform me as to your wishes, I will either send it all, or in part, to you at any time, or I will keep it till you reach home.
When you write me, please direct to the care of McDonald, Gill & Co., 36 Bromfield street, Boston, Mass., U. S. A.
When you return I shall take pleasure in helping to increase the amount, which would be but a reasonable return for all you have done for us under the burning sky of Africa. God, however, will reward you in a far richer manner—in the "Well done, good and faithful servant."
Remember Douglass. All I ask is that you give that camp meeting the precedence over all others; as much for dear Brother Morse's sake as anything else. He has been the largest contributor, and will cheerfully do more when you get home.
Our winter has been very mild, but now has become very cold. It looks like we shall have the winter in the lap of spring. I hope God will guide you in choosing the safest time to return to America.
Of course you have met dear Brother and Sister Pearsall Smith in London, where they now reside—44 Grosvenor Road, Westminster. We miss them exceedingly.
I am, you see, in New Hampshire; not permanently, but for a few months, perhaps, preaching for a Baptist Church—the most spiritual I have ever known. We are just now having a precious work of grace; conversions every night, and as many as forty seeking the blessing of a clean heart. Glory to God! I expect Brother Morse to come and help me next week.
Now, dear sister, I must close, commending you to God and the Word of His grace. I am,
Yours, in eternal and holy fellowship,
EDGAR M. LEVY.
SANATOGA, PA., Oct. 11, 1890.
MY DEAR MRS. SMITH:—I welcome you back to America. I thank the Lord for all your grand work, and rejoice that He has used you for His own glory for so many years, and has brought you safely back to us again.
I send this as directed in the Philadelphia Methodist, and hope it will reach you. I want you to visit me. I am thirty-three miles out from Philadelphia, on the main line of the Reading Railroad. I have bought a farm of sixty-five acres, on the Philadelphia Pike, one mile or less, from the Sanatoga station. If you will let me know when you are coming, I will meet you with a
carriage. I have a big house and plenty to eat, and a warm welcome awaits you, and a good warm room will be ready for you.
My son, the little boy who was with me at Ocean Grove, is married; has a good, practical, Christian girl for a wife; and we all live together. There are only three in our family. They both join me in the invitation.
As ever, your faithful friend,
OFFICE OF SUPERINTENDENT,
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
INDIAN SCHOOL SERVICE,
STANDING ROCK AGENCY, N D., October 29, 1891.
MRS. AMANDA SMITH:—Your letter of August 8th, after many wanderings, has at last reached me here.
Was very glad to hear from you. I have sometimes wondered why the Lord keeps a person so full of faith, and love, and Christian zeal, so long out of Heaven; it must be, that you may be a blessing to this poor, sinful, needy world.
I shall never forget your earnest prayers, so full of faith, and the profound respect the good people of Salem, Mass., had for you and your Christian character. Your labors have been a great blessing to multitudes, and your reward is on high, and will not fail.
May God greatly multiply such laborers. The world needs them. With kind remembrances, yours, etc.
My DEAR SISTER AMANDA:—You know I always loved you. I think it was Chaplain McCabe that called you our "Palm Tree," in the years gone down into the past, when we met you at our National Camp Meetings. And now, in these latter days, you have come into our organization of The King's Daughters and Sons.
I am so glad to see the gleam of the silver cross on any Daughter or Son, but when I saw it on you, my princely sister, I was peculiarly happy. Many jeweled hands I shall forget, but never your dark hand, raised so high when singing:
"My Saviour's promise faileth never,
He counts me in the whosoever."
You are it real daughter of the King "all glorious within." How often I would have given a good deal to have heard the tones of your voice singing:
"The wonder-working Jesus!
The very same Jesus!"
Well, he has worked wonders through you. Many an owner of a white face would have been willing to have exchanged it for your white soul, but we are in a spiritual kingdom where there is neither bond nor free, white nor black. Christ is all and in all.
I am glad to think that wherever you go, you will bear the cross of our Order, and I do hope that many will follow you into the banqueting house where His banner over us is love. Some day we shall enter the King's palace, and I trust be presented faultless before the presence of His Glory; and the joy of all joys to my mind will be that of giving our King "exceeding joy" in the presentation.
Your loving President, "I. H. N.,"
SISTER MARGARET BOTTOME.
This letter from Bob—my Bob—is short, but will show how he is getting on, and that he is like other boys. I am sorry the sweet-shop was wrecked, and that it rained so they could not go to see the procession, but I am glad on account of the new boots and trousers!
SOUTHPORT, October 28th, 1892.
MY DEAR MOTHER:—I hope you are better than when you last wrote to me.
There was a shipwreck at Blackpool a fortnight ago. The storm destroyed a sweet-shop, on the pier.
Miss Hobbs has bought me a new pair of boots, and made me a new pair of trousers.
I am trying to learn the books of the New Testament, but I cannot say them yet.
There has been a procession here; it rained so we couldn't go to see it.
The Exhibition closed on October 1st. Hundreds of people came to it. The fire-works were lovely.
The weather is very rainy and cold.
Mr. Walker sends his love. I met him in Chapel Street last Thursday. Miss Hobbs sends her love.
With much love, I remain,
Your loving son,
WORLD'S WOMAN'S CHRISTIAN TEMPERANCE UNION,
HEADQUARTERS AND OFFICE OF PRESIDENT,
ALBANY BUILDINGS, 47 VICTORIA ST., WESTMINSTER,
LONDON, February 17, 1893.
Mrs. Amanda Smith, 2940 South Park Avenue, Chicago.
DEAR SISTER:—We learn that you are about to bring out a book containing your experiences of life which have been so varied and remarkable. We are glad of this, and confident that great good will come of it to all who read it, for your cheery Christianity bears the stamp that should become universal, and every fresh example helps to bring that day nearer.
Believe us, your true friends in the love of God,
FRANCES F. WILLARD.
RETURN TO LIVERPOOL—FAITH HEALING—BISHOP TAYLOR LEAVES AGAIN FOR AFRICA—USE OF MEANS—THE STORY OF MY BONNET— TOKENS OF GOD S HELP AFTER MY RETURN FROM AFRICA.
I left Sierra Leone in November, 1890. I was so miserable that I only gave myself three weeks to live; I thought I might possibly drag along about that length of time.
I did not go to any of my friends in Liverpool, or Southport, as they wanted I should do. I was so tired, and weak, and I thought of the care and anxiety I would be to them, and then the extra work for the servants—all this I thought of—though I never saw better principled servants in my life, than in England.
I suppose there is not a lady in England who would think of consulting her servants as to whether she should entertain a colored person in her home; I do not believe there was ever such a thing heard of in England. But such a thing in America would not be considered out of place. I have met the like more than once.
I was at a good lady's house in Philadelphia, not long since; she was very kind to me, and wanted to ask me to stay for tea, but did not dare to do so, on account of an old servant who would have been vexed if she had had to serve a colored woman, whom the lady herself had asked to sit at her table. It was night, and I only had to ride two and a half hours, from Philadelphia to Newark, my home, and I got my own supper, thank the Lord.
Well, I had no fears of this kind in England. But I felt that I wanted to be quiet, and simply let alone. I had it in my mind all clear as to what I would do with little Bob.
While on the steamer I had my first attack of "la grippe." I had not heard of it in Africa; it had not got there then; so that I did not know really what had happened to me. But the good
doctor on the steamer seemed to understand how to manage it, and with little things I knew to do for myself, I got relief in a few days. Then it seemed to turn again; and, oh! the pain I suffered. I told the Lord not to let me die and be buried at sea.
I had seen poor Mrs. Beede, when on my way from Old Calabar, buried at sea. And I knew all that would have to be done, and I shrank from it. I said, "Oh! Lord, if Thou wilt only give me strength to get to Liverpool, I will not trouble Thee any more."
For I was so tired of holding on, and trying to keep up; and for three weeks after I got to Liverpool I did not pray. It seemed to me the Lord had done all I asked Him, and now all I had to do was the little I could do for myself, and just wait and see what next the Lord would do.
I calmly looked over all my mind, and my work in Africa. I felt that while there was so much to be done, and I had only done a little, yet that I had God's approval that I had done all I could. I went to Africa at His bidding, and did not leave till I was sure I had His sanction. So I felt, if I were to die, my conscience was clear before my God. I had worked willingly, and suffered cheerfully, in the work, for His sake. And there was not a shadow between my soul and God, and I felt I had nothing to ask.
We got into Liverpool on Friday night. The stewardess said I could have lodgings with her. So she took me to her house. All night I suffered. On Saturday morning I felt a little rested; but the pains troubled me very much; so, as the evening drew near, I sent out and got some medicine, and thought I would go to bed early. But just about eight o'clock, my dear friend, Mrs. Stavely (whom I had written to say I had got in, but did not expect to see before Monday), and her husband came in. Dear souls, how very kind they were. They were delighted to see me, and said they thought I looked well to what they expected. I told them how miserable I had been, and how I had suffered. At once Mrs. Stavely said:
"Oh! why don't you trust the Lord to heal you?"
"Why," I said, "that is what I have been doing all along; and I believe if I had not done so I would have been dead long ago."
She had often written me on the subject of faith healing, while in Africa, and had sent me numerous papers; then I knew dear Mrs. Baxter, and Mrs. Dr. Bordman, and many others of those choice spirits. But somehow I did not seem to be able to see the
teaching as they did. They could not understand how anyone so strong in faith as I seemed to be, did not see it; and they knew, and I knew, that the Lord was with me, and did lead me, and bless me. But, like them, I did not understand it myself.
"However," I said to Mrs. Stavely. "if an effort on my part is necessary, I cannot make it, I am too weak. But like the man we read of in the Gospel, I am willing for any body to do any thing for me that he can."
The man we read of in the Gospel was too weak to do anything himself, but was willing they should take the roof off the house and let him down before Jesus; and Jesus, seeing their faith said to the sick of the palsy: "Arise." So I said, "there is just where I am. I am willing, from the crown of my head to the soles of my feet."
"Oh, well," she said, "if you are willing, the Lord can do it."
"But, then," I said, "I have just swallowed a dose of castor oil and laudanum five minutes before you came in."
"Well," she laughingly said, "you can trust the Lord."
I knew how very conservative good Mr. Stavely was; that he was not an enthusiast by any means, though one of the grandest men I ever knew; and he spoke up:
"Yes, Sister Smith, why not trust the Lord to heal?"
"My," I thought, "if he has got to believing so, it is wonderful."
After a pleasant chat they went home. All day Sunday I suffered. There was a sick lady in the next room to me, and they called in a doctor for her. He was a good Christian man. So, as I was so very ill, my hostess said I had better have the doctor see me. I agreed, and he came in. He was very pleasant, and I told him I was just from Africa. He was much interested, and said that they had a large mission on the Congo. He was delighted to see little Bob, and said he would like me and Bob to come to Sabbath School in their church.
He left me some medicine, which did me good, and relieved the pain so that I was able to sleep a little on Sunday night. Then, as he had to call on the other lady on Monday and Tuesday he called each time to see me, also.
I took the medicine on Sunday and Monday, but did not take it on Tuesday.
"Now, I ought to trust the Lord—now as I am willing," I
said, "but the doctor is so kind, he may not like it if he knows I am not taking the medicine; still, if he asks me, I will tell him I am not taking it." Then I prayed, "Lord, do not let him ask me anything about it."
So sure enough he called in on Wednesday, had a nice chat, and said, "Well, Mrs. Smith, I see you are better."
"Yes, Doctor," I said, "I am feeling much better. How much shall I pay you?"
"Oh! nothing at all. I am very glad to do what I can for you."
So I thanked him, and he left.
On Friday I heard that Bishop Taylor was in town, and would leave on Saturday. So I went down to Mr. Stavely's office, the Temple, Dale Street, Liverpool, and found that the office of Anderson Fowler, Bishop Taylor's agent, was next to Mr. Stavely's.
This was the first time I ever saw a telephone work. It was a new thing to me. But I soon heard from the Bishop. They said, "Yes, he was there; had just gone out live minutes before."
So I left my address, and asked the Bishop to call on me at my lodgings. But, as the Bishop was poorly, with asthma, his son, Mr. Ross Taylor, and Mr. Welch, the former editor of the "African News," called at my lodgings.
I was delighted to see them. We did have a pleasant time together. We had a little song, and then we knelt and had prayers. My! how Brother Ross Taylor did pray; and Brother Welch. They were in quite a hurry, so did not stop long.
Mr. Ross told me that his father was to leave for Africa on Saturday. So next morning I got a cab, and Bob and I went down to the pier to see the Bishop off. I got there before the Bishop arrived, and I saw him when he came on board; and I think I never pitied a man so in my life. It seemed as though he could scarcely walk, he was so weak and thin. I said to myself, "That is not the Bishop Taylor that I left in Africa." Oh! how changed he was. After I had looked at him for a time (for he did not see me) I went to him and said:
"How do you do, Bishop?"
"Pretty well," he said.
How glad he was to see Bob and me. He saw us last at Cape Palmas, in Africa. Then I said, "What a dreadful cold you have."
"Yes," he said, "an attack of asthma. I have not had an attack before for (I think he said) thirty years. The other night I did not know but I was going. My breath was so short. But I told the Lord if He would spare me I would like to live a little longer for Africa."
And I saw the great tears in his eyes, and his lips quivered. Then he brushed the tears away, and said, with a twinkle in his eye:
"You know, Amanda, I have known men to die for want of breath."
"Yes," I said, "they generally die for such a want."
Oh! how I would like to have gone back with him. As I looked at him I said, "Oh! what a sacrifice, all for my people. At his time of life he ought to have his home comforts, with his wife to look after him, and his children around him. Now he is so weak and sick. And then he is going all alone on the steamer, and not a soul to do anything for him."
I cannot tell how sad I felt. I said to Mr. Ross, "Can't you go as far as Madeira with the Bishop?"
"No," he replied, "father says I must go home."
Then the Bishop said to me, "Well, good bye, Amanda. Take good care of Bob."
I bade him good-bye the best I could, and left. I never expected to see him again in this life. When I got into the cab, oh! how I cried! And for three days every time I thought of the dear old hero, I had a good cry; I couldn't help it. How good the Lord was to take him to Africa, and bring him back to his home land so well and strong. How like a God is He who doeth all things well. Amen.
Again I turn to my story. Going out at that time gave me fresh cold; I had not got my winter clothes yet; so a dreadful cough set in, and rheumatism in my left arm; and what I suffered, God only knows. But I had quit taking any means. I was willing to trust the Lord.
"Lord," I said, "there are all the things I have been taking, and they have helped me up to a certain point, and then I had to trust you. So I will trust you and do without taking anything."
Now this time, the Lord did not seem to test me as before. I just wanted a little relief from pain, for I was going to die anyhow. So I went on.
One night about two o'clock, I had not slept a wink up to that
time, I was sitting up in bed crying with pain in my arm. Dear little Bob was in bed beside me, sleeping away. Everybody in the house was asleep; my cough was terrible; and I said, "Oh! Lord, help me. What shall I do?" and as though some oneone stood by me and spoke, I heard, "Put cotton batting on your arm."
"Thou knowest," I replied, "I have not got any; but in the morning I will ask the lady if she has any."
So I did, and she gave me some. I got down before the fire on my knees, and put on the cotton batting It did seem to relieve me, and the pain seemed to quiet down as I knelt down before the fire and it got warm, and I fell into a little doze of sleep. It was better next day, but, oh! so sore. I told my friends I believed it was the good Spirit that prompted me to put on the cotton batting. But they thought I should not have done it, but simply ignored the plan, and just trusted the Lord.
Well, I tried the best I could. They sent me books on the subject; but I said, "I will not read anything but the Bible. I am going to take the Word of God, and ask help of the Spirit."
All right. One night after this my cough troubled me so that I could not sleep. After a severe fit of coughing, I said, "Oh! Lord, do help me. What must I do?" And in an instant a voice distinctly said to me, "Beet root tea will allay the irritation." And I said, "Now, Lord, if that is Thy voice speaking to me, please keep it in my mind till morning and I will do it."
I remembered that twenty years before I was told this thing, and did it for a friend who was ill with cold, and it helped her; but I didn't remember that I had ever thought of it from that time until it came to me that night.
This was between three and four o'clock in the morning. About day-break I got a little quiet; and at seven o'clock a servant came in and made the fire, and it came to me about the beet root. I said, "Well, I am better now, and I needn't mind about it."
I got up at eight, and it came again, "Beet root tea." But still I did not heed. About nine o'clock the same whisper came to me again:
"You said if the Lord would keep it in your mind till morning, you would make the beet root tea."
"So I did."
And I called Bob and sent him downstairs to ask the lady if she had any red beets. She sent me two small ones, but very nice
and red; I had a small sauce pan, and I put them in and boiled them and made a strong cupful and drank it, and it did allay the irritation so that I coughed but little after that to what I had done before; and I shall ever believe that God was teaching me not to ignore the use of all means in sickness.
I believe that God is honored as much when He tells me to do a thing and I obey, as when He says not to do it, and I obey. "Thou shalt not covet." "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart." To me obedience in both cases is absolutely necessary to honor God. I only receive blessings as I obey.
Rev. D. F. Sanford, of Boston, was so kind to Bob and me, and he and his wife were at the Berachia home, at Southport, and during the series of meetings he was holding he gave Bible readings on this subject; and it seemed so clear, and many seemed to get help and blessing, and I did too.
But many thought I was not half out of the woods. So one day two ladies called to see me, after I had returned to Liverpool. I had never seen them before, but they said they had heard of me; and one of them, Mrs. A., told me of her wonderful experience of how she was healed of dropsy.
I was deeply interested, as she went on narrating all the incidents in relation to it, and how she used oil and anointed herself, as she said she felt the Lord led her to do.
"Oh," I said, "I was out last evening to the shop, and it came to me to get some sweet oil."
"That is it," she said at once.
"But," I said, "I did not get it."
"Well," she said, "olive oil is the best; but I did not have that in my case. Haven't you got oil of any kind in the house?"
"Only a little castor oil that was left in the glass."
"It only needs a few drops, and that will do."
So I knelt down, and they anointed me with this oil, and prayed very earnestly. They both said they got such a baptism when they were healed; so I could not help expecting some assurance to this work of healing my body, as I did to my sanctification and justification.
They told me this was right for me to expect, for God had made the provision for the body's healing, with that of the soul; and I did honestly try to see it just its they did. But I could not. I went on for ten days waiting for this especial assurance that I
was really healed. Oh! how I longed for it, but I never got any such assurance. Still I held on by faith.
Christmas came. My dear friend, Mrs. Stavely, had invited me to Seaforth. It was with great difficulty that I got there. When I did, oh! what a night of suffering. She prayed with me. Oh, how true and kind she was. Her faith held on to God for me.
Next day another dear friend, Mrs. D., came; and they two together prayed and encouraged me to still hold on; that all the pain I suffered was simply a temptation; the Lord would heal me. I made my will do the best it would; but I felt the pain just the same.
About noon I got up, and they helped me to get my clothes on. They were so anxious I should be down to Christmas dinner with them. So I was, and as best I could, endured the pain through dinner. When it was over I could not hold out any longer; I went up to my room, and walked the floor in agony. I tried to ignore the pain; but in spite of my will and faith, it would not be ignored a bit!
About day-break I got a little quiet and slept a little; and while the pain was not so bad as it had been, it was three weeks before I was able to get my arm above my head. And when I would use any means, or talk of it, my friends would feel so sorry for me, and say that it was not honoring the Lord to do so.
But I had sincerely prayed for light. And I believe God has given it to me; if for no one else, He does to Amanda Smith, and I feel quite sure I am not mistaken in God's leading me. I think He has saved me from bondage on these points. Amen. Amen.
As one of the little incidents that reached its culmination after my return from Africa to England, I must here relate the story of my bonnet—not a very important story in itself, but, like most stories, it has its moral, also, if we choose to see it.
How I did hate to give up my nice Quaker bonnet! I had no special feeling about putting it on, so far as feathers and flowers were concerned. I settled that when I was converted. All of those things were surrendered, though the love of them was deep in my heart, so that when I sought the blessing of cleansing I had no difficulty on the dress question.
I always admired the Friends' dress, so this was at once my choice, and at that time many of the Christian sisters among all
the colored churches in Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore, dressed like the Friends, and were generally called Band Sisters, and, as a rule, were noted for their deep piety and Christian character. I loved them for this, as well as admired their very plain dress, for the height of my ambition was to be a consistent, downright, outright Christian.
It was not a question of your belonging to the Society of Friends because you chose to dress like them. I remember that not only colored Methodists dressed like them, but white Methodists as well, so that I never dreamed of anyone questioning me on my plain dress. When I got to England I found it was different, dressing like a Friend and not being a Friend, and none of my people being Friends. They did not understand it, so as I went about I was often questioned, though in a very nice way.
I was with the Friends a great deal, and they were most hospitable and kind. They would sometimes say;
"Does thee belong to the Society of Friends?"
"Did thy father and mother?"
"And none of thy people are Friends?"
"How strange that thee should wear the Friends' garb."
Well, then I would go into a long explanation, tell of Americans being independent in what they choose; how no one felt bound to wear any set garb; that Methodists or Presbyterians, no matter who, if they liked to dress like the Friends, or anybody else, if they had the money, just got the article, whatever it was, and no one had any thought about it.
They would listen patiently, and then kindly say: "Well, I think if I were thee, I would not do it."
I didn't understand it at first, but later on I found out that no one in England would wear a Friends' bonnnet who was not a Friend, if they did they would be suspected of pretending to be what they were not. When I first heard this I was frightened. I said, "Oh, deary me, is this why I have been so questioned?"
As I was going from place to place, everybody treated me most kindly, but, "oh," I said, "has this been the thought in their mind, that I have been pretending to be what I am not?"
I prayed and cried about it a great deal for the Lord only
knows how I hate deception or sham in anything, but especially in Christianity or religion; but then, I could do nothing. I thought, if I take off my bonnet, and I did not want to do so, for I really loved it, but still if I should take it off, and see persons from America who knew me, that they would say, "Yes, that is just what we thought, Amanda Smith would take off her plain bonnet when she got to England!"
Then the people on this side thought I was representing my-self, by wearing the Friends' dress, to be what I was not.
So there I was, between two fires, and the thought of sailing under false colors, this was more than I could bear, but I stood it until I got back to Liverpool, then I had to get a new bonnet. I dreaded going through the explanation again. I saw that the settled ladies were wearing little bonnets. I thought, "What shall I do, I can never wear a little bonnet."
I thought if I could find a Friends' milliner, I would get me a plain bonnet if it were not a real Friends' bonnet. I knew I could not get what I wanted at any ordinary milliner, and I did not know where to go in Liverpool to find a Friends' milliner.
I wrote to my friend, Mrs. Margaret Davis, of Fox Rock, Dublin, and told her my dilemma. She wrote and told me she thought I was quite right about getting the bonnet I wanted, and that she would find out where I could find a Friends' milliner in Liverpool. But before I got her word, two ladies called on me and would go with me to get some warmer clothing. It was very cold and I had only my African clothes, four double, but then I was not warm, so we went shopping, as we would say in England.
The ladies got me a nice fur cloak, warm under flannels, nice jersey jacket, stockings, gloves, etc., then they said:
"Is there anything else, Amanda?"
"That is all," I replied.
Just then one of the ladies said, "Oh, you must have a nice bonnet!"
Then I told them I was waiting for a letter so as to know where to go. They said, "You will not wear that big bonnet again."
I tried to explain to them as best I could, but they insisted that I must get a bonnet, "properly," as they said. So we went into the millinery department and got me a "nice bonnet," the largest one they had, and that was not very large, and the plainest.
So I went on all right until I came back to America, then here it was again, "Oh, what have you done with your plain bonnet?" I felt so sick of explaining that I felt like starting a new style and wearing no bonnet at all!
Scores of people have asked me about my bonnet that have never thought of asking me how my soul prospered, and this, after all, is more important in God's sight than though I wore a hundred plain bonnets.
I thought it well to give this final explanation. Amen.
I had a great many expenses during my stay at Sierra Leone. I had my two native children, Bob and Frances, with me, and the little girl was sick all the time. I did everything I could for her to get her well enough to bring with me.
She had been sick for three months before I left Monrovia; but I had got her well enough to get as far as Sierra Leone, where I hoped, through better medical attendance, she would get quite well enough for me to bring to England.
After spending three or four months in Sierra Leone, and doing all I could for her, paying doctors' bills and all, the doctor told me at last that the child could not stand the climate if I brought her, and that she would be a great deal of trouble and care, so I had to decide to leave her, as I had little Bob to look after.
Then I had to provide everything for Frances, so as to leave her comfortable, as I was going to bring little Bob with me. This made my expenses more; but I had quite enough to bring me to Liverpool, if I could live to get there, though sometimes I was a little doubtful whether I would. But the Lord understood my case.
It was not long after I got there before my loving Father, God, began to fulfill that blessed old promise, that He gave me when I left America: "My God will supply all your need according to His riches in glory, by Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:19. Different friends began to send in, as I have already shown; some, three pounds; then two pounds; others, one pound.
One week when I needed just four shillings to pay for my lodgings at Liverpool, before leaving for my friend, Mrs. Staveley's, at Seaforth, where I was going that afternoon, the postman brought a letter in the morning, and when I opened it it was from America, and contained one dollar. I did not know the sender—no
name—only "God bless you; I welcome you back from Africa." That was all. So I praised the Lord, paid for my lodgings and left.
"This, this is the God I adore,
My faithful, unchangeable friend
His love is as great as His power,
Which neither knows measure nor end."
WORK IN ENGLAND—IN LIVERPOOL, LONDON, MANCHESTER, AND VARIOUS OTHER PLACES—I GO TO SCOTLAND AND IRELAND —SECURE PASSAGE TO NEW YORK—INCIDENTS OF THE VOYAGE —HOME AGAIN—CONCLUDING WORDS.
My first work in England, after my return from Africa, was at Gordon Hall, Mrs. Stephen Menzies', Liverpool, where I spoke at a large conference and sang, and the Lord blessed me greatly. My next work was at Fleshfield, at Mr. Radcliff's. I began on Watch Night and spent a week. I was not well, but somehow the Lord helped me to speak to a large congregation in the little chapel. From there I went to Southport and assisted in some meetings held by Rev. D. F. Sanford, of Boston, U. S. A.
All this time I was miserable, but I would earnestly pray and ask the Lord to strengthen me, and He would always do it, but I see now the wise thing would have been for me to have rested entirely, for that was my real need, and the strength I used in praying I should have spent in resting. I believe this would have been pleasing to God. What a dull scholar I have been in His school and yet He has been so patient with me.
Then I held several meetings in Liverpool; then on to Doncaster, was entertained at the home of Miss Morris, Chequer House. I shall never forget her kindness to Bob and me. Here I had some rest, but held a number of meetings, some in the hall of the Y. M.C. A., and Mother's Meetings, and several drawing room meetings at Mrs. Richard Norris'; and various other meetings. From Doncaster we went to London on our way to Folkston. My dear friend, Mrs. D. Bordman, of London, had kindly invited me to stop on my way. She had also kindly arranged a little quiet reception. A number of friends were invited, among those that were present was Mrs. Hannah Whitehall Smith, Mrs. Mark Guy Pierce, and
others. This was a surprise to me, but it was a blessed meeting and meant more to me than I have language to express.
From London I went on to Folkston, where I had been sent for, to hold a special service at the Railway Mission. Here Bob and I had nice lodgings provided; and it was here where little Bob was converted, one morning just after breakfast as we kneeled together to have our morning worship. Praise the Lord!
I shall never forget the blessing the Lord gave us at Mr. Tokes' church. He is a grand man of God, a staunch churchman, but what is called low Church; broad, but orthodox, so that he invited a woman to take services in his church, and God wonderfully blessed his work and people. One dear woman told me that she had sought the blessing of heart purity for several years, but she said somehow the Lord helped me to make the way so simple that she saw it, believed, and entered into rest. Her face beamed with delight. To Him alone be glory forever.
Then on Sunday night the Congregationalist minister invited the Railway meeting over to his fine church, which was just across the street, the crowd being so great we couldn't seat them in the hall. He threw open his pulpit; though it was a new thing under the sun for a woman to stand in the pulpit of a Congregational Church; and I must confess I did feel a little shaky myself to be up there alone; but I cried mightily to the Lord for help, and, if ever He did help me, He did that Sunday night, and blessed His own Word to the hearts of the people, and several entered in and found soul rest. Praise the Lord!
Then I spoke at several other meetings, including one of the Salvation Army, who were doing a grand work at Folkston. They had given me an urgent invitation to speak for them. I had but one night that I could possibly give, so I went in the name of the Lord and did what I could.
From Folkston I went to London, spent a few days with Mrs. Col. Finch White, at Louishem Hill. Here I held several meetings, including a drawing room meeting at Mrs. Finch White's. Drawing room meetings are not a rare thing as they are in America, I think, as I have never held any here, but did so often in England, and often with great profit, I trust.
Thursday, April 3, I leave London for Southport, and stop at Mrs. Stavely's Berachia Home. Monday, April 10, I take Bob to Miss Hobb's school, where he is now, and has been ever since.
How good the Lord was to open this door of mercy to this dear boy; thus the promise is true, "If ye shall ask anything in my name, I will do it." On the 16th I go to a Conference at Manchester, Mr. Crossley's, Star Hall. This was a blessed meeting, conducted by Rev. D. F. Sanford, to which I was invited and entertained at Mr. Crossley's home with Mr. and Mrs. Sanford, and though I did but little, the Lord blessed me. And when I was leaving, Mr. C. handed me a check for, I think, ten pounds— not quite sure as to the amount—but at all the places they paid me well.
Besides the meetings at Star Hall, I took a meeting at a large mission hall carried on by the Society of Friends. Here the Lord gave His blessing on the Word.
April the 23rd, I leave Manchester for Southport, attend to some little matters for Bob, then, on Friday, April 25, I leave Southport for London, stop at Mrs. Isabella Walker's, where I had had a very warm invitation to spend some time at her home. This lady was anxious I should go to some of the meetings held at the headquarters of the Salvation Army, Congress Hall.
This I was not able to do, but spent two very pleasant weeks with Mrs. Walker. at Clapham. How the grace of God was magnified in this lady's home life, a lady of rank and culture and position, but so fully consecrated to God. She was Mrs. Booth's warmest friend, and was with her through her last severe illness. It was here I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. and Mrs. Col. Clibborn, of the Salvation Army, whose work is in Paris. May the Lord bless them.
May the 1st, I was invited by Mr. Reader Harris and Rev. D. F. Sanford to be at their anniversary meeting, at Speak Hall, Clapham. This is a great meeting, held every year, and has been a great blessing to scores of souls from all parts of England.
May 7th, through the invitation of Mr. Clifford, Honorable Treasurer of the Great Church Army, I speak at the anniversary meeting at Piccadilly. The crowd was very great, but the Lord gave His blessing; then I addressed several meetings at Miss Mason's House of Rest, Cambridge Gardens, London, West.
Saturday, May 10, at Woodgreen, Mr. Morgan, the editor of "The Christian," invited me to take some services at his hall on Sabbath and several week nights. Here again the Lord was pleased to give tokens of His favor, and a number professed to have found peace in believing.
On the 24th, I leave London for Scotland, stop at Carlisle, with Mrs. Walker's sister, Mrs. Johnston. What a lovely home this is. I was so tired and would so like to have rested, but I had not been in long before a number of dear friends gathered and I had to have a meeting. I felt I really could not, at first, but I asked the Lord to help me, and He did, praise His name. On Monday, the 26th, I leave Carlisle for Alloa, Scotland. Miss Patten, of Morris Hill House, through my dear friend, Mrs. Lisle, had kindly invited me to Alloa to have a little rest, God bless her, I shall never forget her kindness in every way to me. Before I ever saw her she wrote and sent me five pounds, which came just at a time when I needed it. God's word of promise did not fail. (Phil., 4:19).
After a little rest, I held several meetings at different places in Scotland, at Alloa and then at Crief. Here Miss Patten took me to the great Hydropathic institution, at her own expense, where I could well have spent a month, but because of an engagement for some meetings at Edinburgh, I could only spend one week. How kind the people were, and the baths and treatment that I received during the short stay did me the greatest good. I shall ever praise God for Miss Patten, and for the kindness shown me at this beautiful institution. I was asked to give a little missionary talk one morning in the chapel, which seemed to be very much appreciated.
From Crief I went to Edinburgh, after holding meetings a week, arranged by Mr. Govern, who had also arranged a series of meetings at Peble's, on the River Clide, and at a number of other places. Then, leaving there, I went to Blaine O'Chile, Dunblain. I went on Friday to stay until Monday. This lady, Mrs. Chapman, was a very dear friend of Mrs. Lisle, who had spent a number of years in Africa on the Congo and at Old Calibar, where I first met her, and worked with her a little while there. It was through her that I got to know Mrs. Chapman; since then she has gone to her reward. May God bless her memory.
Mrs. Chapman is a lady of large means, and I think I never saw one whose means and all was so fully consecrated to God. How many young men she has educated for foreign work, both white and colored, and has also been the help of many others. Her record is in heaven.
She invited me to come and see her before I left Scotland. I was getting ready to go home and I felt I needed the money, still
I wanted to go and see this lady, so I told the Lord if He would have me go, not to let me be anxious about the means, but to open the way for me. I had a good quiet Saturday, and it was very stormy and rainy on Sunday, so that Mrs. S. said we would not go to church in the morning. In the afternoon she asked me if I would take a service and speak to the servants in the large kitchen. This I did, and spoke with great freedom from the 15th of John. We had a very interesting meeting. At the close Mrs. S. said, I think the meeting has been very profitable. She was very pleased, and as we went to the next room she said, "I want to hand you a little donation," so she handed me six pounds. I said, how the Lord has answered prayer!
On Monday morning as I was leaving she said, "I think I had better give you another pound." I thanked her and praised the Lord.
From here I went on to Grenock, spent a night and spoke to a large congregation in a hall. On the 15th I left for Belfast, spent a few days at Neury; held several meetings there. On the 18th I leave Neury for Fox Rock, Dublin; stopped with my friend Mrs. Margaret Davis, whom God raised up to help me so while in Africa; God bless her forever.
During my stay at this very pleasant Irish home I held several meetings at the Friends' Meeting House, Monkstown, then at different places in Dublin at the Wesleyan Chapel, etc., etc.
Then, July 30th I leave Dublin for Leeds, Eng. Thank God He has given me the strength and the intimation that I may start for home. Praise His name. How I have ever gone through with the work I have, I cannot tell, for I was not able to think of getting my things together till last Monday, the 28th. In the morning when I woke the thought came how I should get my things together, and when I had thought it all over I had found that the dreadful weakness did not overcome me as it had done before. I said, praise the Lord, I can go home.
I got up and wrote to Mr. Stavely, at Liverpool, to get me a ticket; this he could not do, as everything was engaged. So I had to wait till the 26th of August, when I left by the steamer Gallier for New York, and arrived Friday, September 5, 1890.
On the way over from England there were a number of ministers aboard and four or five Catholic priests. All had services on the Sabbath. The Catholics in the lower cabin, and the Protestants in the upper saloon.
In the afternoon there was a meeting among the steerage passengers. I went and listened to a young man talking in very broken English; but, oh! so earnest. He was a foreigner, and was speaking from the fourteenth chapter of John.
There was a number of Plymouth brethren among them, and they seemed to have the right of way, so that the poor young man was alone; for, as a general thing, they have but little sympathy or fellowship for anyone that does not say as they say and teach the truth as they do. All that I have ever met seemed to think and endeavor to impress it upon you that they only, know the Scriptures, and all teaching outside of themselves—true Plymouth brethren—is not safe, and ought not to be relied on. So they all started off from this poor foreigner except a few. When he stopped the Lord said to me as he said to Phillip, "Go up, join yourself to him." So I said, "I want to sing." I struck in:
"I praise the Lord that one like me,
For mercy may to Jesus flee.
He says that whosoever will
May seek and find salvation still."
And then the chorus:
"My Saviour's promise faileth never;
He counts me in the 'whosoever.' "
I sang out with all my ransomed powers, and the people came from all parts of the ship. There was a great crowd. The speaker seemed a little astonished, but said, "Hallelujah. Amen."
When I got through with my song I began to speak. O, how the Lord helped me. Then the people wanted me to speak in the saloon on Sunday evening. I felt God wanted me to do so, and the door was open; I see it now. I am careful, and never like to overdo anything—never like to do anything that looks like I want to push myself, so the devil took that advantage, and when I thought, I would do it, he said:
"Now, you had better let well enough alone, there has been enough for to-day, and to-morrow there will be nothing; why not do it to-morrow?"
"Yes," I said, "perhaps that is the best." But, no; it was not. I ought to have done it when the Lord bade me.
On Monday the saloon was full and they sang and played
cards and other games. No shadow of a chance for anyone to speak unless he just broke right in with everything.
"Well," I said, "I will speak on Tuesday," but no, no chance.
Then I said, "I will the last night," for they said we would not likely get in until Friday.
"O," I said, "I will get ready and do it on Thursday;" but I felt I should have spoken Wednesday night anyhow.
A number of the passengers, ladies and friends, wanted that I should speak, but I said, "On Thursday night I will, without fail, speak and sing."
But, O, what a mistake! We got in on Thursday afternoon, four o'clock, instead of Friday. How ashamed and sorry I was I had not spoken on Wednesday night, as the Lord had showed me.
This is not the only time my courage has failed me under somewhat similar circumstances. Once, on my way front Calcutta, India, to British Burmah, there were a number of English passengers, and though they were respectable and all right as far as I know, they were not of the best type of English ladies and gentlemen. They were of an 'airish' quality, and that class of English or Americans, especially when traveling, are not the class that good taste would be apt to admire or fall in love with; and to do your duty in spite of these surroundings takes a good deal of pluck, especially for a colored woman.
There was a man, his wife and baby, and his brother, from San Francisco, California. The baby was the crossest baby I really ever saw. It cried night and day for simple amusement, it seemed, if for nothing else. Everybody was worn out with it.
These Californians seemed to avoid all Godliness. They laughed and jeered at everything that was said about religion; but they were anxious for me to talk on Sunday morning when they found out I was an evangelist; and I did pray God to make my duty plain to me; and I think He did very clearly show me that I was to speak on Sunday.
They kept up a laugh and joke about it all Saturday, and Sunday morning at the breakfast table, and all the steerage passengers had it, and they seemed as though they were looking forward to a menagerie. When I saw this, I began to question, and the Devil helped me.
"You know you are not to cast your pearls before swine," he said.
One might have thought he was careful of God's pearls. So I did not do it. I didn't feel that I did right, but still I didn't do it.
I believe God would have blest souls on that steamer if I had only done my duty. Then the Californians, after all, seemed disappointed, and were more taunting and sneering than they were before. O, how I saw my mistake, I wept before the Lord, and again sought His forgiving mercy. The mistakes of my life have been many.
O, the patience and loving kindness of the Lord, so infinite in power and might, to bear with such cowards. How true the words of this song:—
"Were it not that love and mercy in my Lord abide,
When my conscience is o'ertaken, where would I hide?
How could I live without Thee, Saviour and friend,
Thou art my only refuge, saved to the end."
Upon our arival at New York I was kindly invited to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Gibson at their pleasant residence, 384 Union street, Brooklyn. Mrs. Gibson was sick in bed, but Mr. Gibson met me at the landing and took me to his home, where I was for two weeks. Then I took a room, the only one I could get; it was ten dollars a month; but this gave me a little chance to look around; then my friend, Mrs. Mary R. Denman, of Newark, N. J., kindly gave me a room in one of her small houses, where my home has been ever since up till last October, when I came to Chicago. Since then I have decided to make this my future home, but entirely subject to God's direction and leading.
And now I close the last chapter of this little book, which has been such a task to one so unskilled in work of this kind. There has been no attempt to show a dash of rhetoric or intellectual ability, but just the simple story of God's dealings with a worm. If, after all, no one should be brought nearer to God, and to a deeper consecration, I shall be sadly disappointed; for my whole object and wish is that God will make it a blessing to all who may read it; and with this desire and prayer I send it forth to the world. And especially do I pray that many of my own people will be led to a more full consecration, and that the Spirit of the
Lord may come upon some of the younger women who have talent, and who have had better opportunities than I have ever had, and so must do better work for the Master; so that when I have fallen in the battle, and can do no more, they may take up the standard and bear it on, with the inscription deeply engraven on heart and life, "Without holiness, no man shall see the Lord."