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often, through the direction of Infinite Goodness, made our greatest blessings. I could not doubt, from the state of his mind, evinced before and during his sickness, that Divine love was near him, and the refining influence of the Redeemer's power preparing him for a better habitation. “The support which was mercifully extended to his beloved sister and myself in the awful moment of departure, the precious feeling of peace which accompanied, and the divine consolation which covered our minds, as a light dispersing all darkness, when we sat beside the remains of our much-esteemed friend, when brought upon deck to be committed to the great deep; these unmerited favours will, I trust, still be held in grateful and humble remembrance. And, oh! that the feeling may be kept alive which was then so sensibly present, that the life that now is is but a little portion of the term of existence, and that we ought ever to act and live under the remembrance that this is not our rest: in thus living, and thus acting, our social affections, and every authorized enjoyment would be heightened, and not diminished. The acknowledgment of God in all our ways would lead us to desire always that He should direct our steps; and feeling also that we hold our friends and our all only at His disposal, we should be the more watchful against every disposition or action that was in any degree unguarded or unkind, and be solicitous for the present and everlasting happiness of those with whom we may be in any degree concerned.”
The following letter was addressed to Hannah Kilham, and contains the melancholy tidings of the death of Richard Smith :—
“Bathurst, St. Mary's,
“I would with pleasure sit down to redeem a parting promise, was not the subject to which I feel bound to draw your attention, one that deeply affects all who feel the least interest in the prosperity of Africa;-I mean the death of Mr. Smith, which I regret to say took place on the morning of the 30th of July, after a severe illness of eight days. His death is much and justly regretted by all there, more especially by the Alcaide and people of Baccow, who seem to have been particularly attached to him. Notwithstanding the very unfavourable season of the year, and the many prejudices they until very lately laboured under, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that a number of both boys and girls were in the habit of regularly attending school twice a-day.
“I am aware that every particular relative to his case may prove interesting to his friends, and therefore will give a brief detail. I went with Mr. Hawkins on the 21st of July to visit Mr. Smith, and found him engaged with six or eight labourers fencing round the house, which he was doing in consequence of the extreme wetness of the day. The evening clearing up, we walked out, and returned by way of the garden; we were highly gratified in finding Mr. Smith in apparently such good health and spirits ; his garden also gave great satisfaction, being stored with a variety of very thriving plants. In the course of conversation, during the evening, I enquired his opinion of the situation of the place, which he assured me was very much to his mind, and that he had enjoyed much better health than when at St. Mary's. On the morning of the 22nd he arose about five o’clock, and went out with the plough : the horses from not having been employed in that way for several days, were rather ungovernable, and I have reason to fear he overexerted himself, as on returning he complained of being fatigued. I recommended a glass of port-wine, which he took, and afterwards said he felt better. I proposed he should return to St. Mary’s with us; but he declined, not thinking anything the matter but a little over-exertion, assuring us that, should he not feel better, he would come early the next morning. With this promise we left him, and heard nothing until the 24th, when he sent a note saying he was again ill. I immediately went to Dr. Wilson, who very kindly furnished him with such medicine and advice as he thought calculated to subdue the complaint, and urged his coming the following morning, and he would gladly furnish him with his apartment in the hospital; but, feeling himself better after this, he did not come until the 26th, when I called upon him, and, though he appeared a good deal reduced and fatigued, I entertained a favourable opinion of his case. I remained with him about an hour and a half, during which time he conversed freely about the country, the fever, and mode of treatment ; said he had no pain, and I left him with the great hope of seeing him much better the next day. When I called the following day. I found a blister had been applied
to the head, on account of spasms, with which he had. been affected ; he was then perfectly collected, but spoke little, and said he felt better than for some time before. Fearing lest the attendants should not be to his mind, I proposed that Sandanee should remain with him during the night, which he thought very desirable. When I called with Mr. Morgan in the evening I found him sinking under the complaint,
but apparently collected, but averse to conversation. “On the morning of the 28th he was so exhausted that I lost all hopes of his recovery. Dr. Wilson urged his having frequently arrow-root, sago, portwine, and chicken-broth ; and Mr. Morgan very kindly attended to him during the night. The complaint was, however, too formidable to be subdued, Z
and he continued gradually to sink, until about halfpast three o'clock on the afternoon of the 30th, when he expired without a struggle. Mr. Morgan was with him through the night, and Sandanee had scarcely left his room since the 27th. “Painful as the irreparable loss of Mr. Smith must prove, I sincerely trust that it will not prevent the Committee from sending out other agents to carry their benevolent plans into effect ; but rather stimulate them to renewed exertion. “I fear many upon hearing of his death will be ready to conclude that he died without accomplishing anything; but so far from this, I am surprised that he could effect so much in the time, or gain the confidence of the natives, and of a person of so much learning and influence as the Alcaide of Baccow, and have so far overcome his prejudices as to be allowed to have a school for the children of the village, which was a very important point gained, and one which has hitherto proved a great barrier against improvement in a Mahommedan country.”
Joseph Rickerby, Printer, Sherbourn Lane.
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