Records from the Diary

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Records from the Diary


"Seest thou a man diligent in his business?

he shall stand before kings:

he shall not stand before mean men."

-Prov. xxii. 29.


1882           1883            1884            1885


"June 29th, 1880.

The Huggate Missionary Meeting. Rev. Caine preached in the afternoon. Rev. Mandale and Mr. Sowersby were the chief speakers at night. Mr. Thomas Marshll in the chair."


"July 6th.-

My wife and daughter went with me to Mr. John S.'s, Southburn, to tea, and Missionary meeting at night. Deputation: Rev. S. Gregory, from Caistor. "I took the chair."


"July 7th.-

We drove to Driffield in the afternoon. Attended Wesleyan Chapel. Opening sermon, at 2-30, by Rev. Charles Garrett.  Public meeting at night.  Mr. Major in the chair. Speakers: Revs. -. Smith, junr. (Scarboro'), Bentley, McCulloch. and Sargeant."


"July 16th.-

At Driffield Show, completing judging imple­ments. Responded after dinner to the toast 'Success to Driffield Agricultural Society.'"


"October 7th.-

At Market Weighton. Harvest Festival.

Rev. Albrighton preached at three o'clock in the afternoon. Public meeting in the evening. I took the chair."


"March 3rd,188I.-

At York. Attended Chamber of Agriculture. Discussed' Rivers Conservancy Bill,' 'Corn Returns Bill,' and 'Tenants Compensation Bill 1.' "


"March 4th.-

One of the most stormy and severe days I remember. The snow was blown into drifts so as to make the roads impassable, and filled all up again, which has already cost this parish £17 in snow cutting."


"March 5th.-

Weather of Arctic severity. Terrible last night! Trees so heavily laden with ice that loose branches were scattered in all directions. Bitterly cold sleet, and all the roads filled up more than I have known."


"March 8th.-

Again in London, at meeting of Central Chamber of Agriculture, from II a.m. till 3-30 p.m. Went with Mr. Duckham, M. P., to House of Commons. Dined there, and sat three hours listening to Irish debate. Expected to hear Mr. Gladstone, but he did not speak."


"March 24th.-

Went in the evening to London."


"March 25th.-I

In London, at 12 o'clock noon. Attended a .committee of the House of Lords to give evidence on the 'Highways Acts.' Duke of Somerset, chairman. Lord Salisbury and many distinguished members of Parliament present."


11 October 6th, 188I.-

My daughter was married to-day to Mr. Walter Hoddinott, Lighthorne, Warwickshire, by the Rev. C. H. Burton, at Huggate Church, in the presence of a large gathering of friends and relatives."


"April 19th, 1882,

at Driffield: In the afternoon heard Rev.

Peter Mackenzie preaches. Lecture at night on 'Joshua.' I took the chair."


"May 8th, 1882,

I have heard to-day of the death of my dear friend, Rev. G. P. Keogh, at Dinton Vicarage, near Aylesbury, on Friday last. Also of murder of Lord F. Cavendish and Mr. Burke on Saturday, 7.10 p.m., in Phcenix Park, Dublin."


"June 5th,

went to London, at Exeter Hall in the evening, Sunday School Association meeting."


" June 6th,

at Central Chamber of Agriculture, discussing 'Tenants' Compensation Bills,' Messrs. Chaplin's, Sir T. Ackland's, James Howard's."


"June 7th.

On my way home got off at Retford, looked over some farms at Osberton."


"July 5th,

went to Leamington and to Lighthorne, Warwickshire visit my. daughter."


"July 6th,

drove to Stratford-on-Avon and from there drove seven miles to Clopton farm, in Gloucestershire j excellent grass, strong tillage, capital crops, 450 acres, big rent 44S. 6d. per acre"


"July 7th,

went to Wolston, near Coventry, to see a farm occupied by Mr. Bromwich, 300 acres mixed, light, sandy and strong wheat land, sixty acres good feeding grass."


"July 8th,

received a letter from Mr. H. (Sheriff of Warwickshire), offering me Higher Clopton farm, near Stratford. Drove over to see it, 480 acres, 150 grass and 330 tillage, good order; worth notice at a rent."


The reason why Joseph Smith looked over all these farms, was because owing to the great fall in prices of all agricultural produce, he determined to leave the Wolds, the rent of his farm being too high in proportion.


"Sunday, July 16th,

had Mr. Stonehouse at Huggate; preach Sunday school sermons."


"Sunday, 1st October,

preached at Pocklington. Genesis xxvii i. 12


11 October 6th,

went to look at South Holme farms, near Slingsby."


"December 9th,

met Mr. C. at Malton, and finally agreed to enter on two farms at South Holme on 6th April."


"February 14th, 1883,

met Mr. R. at Slingsby and took the Manor House farm at South Holme'


"February 17th,

at Malton, presided in the afternoon over a large meeting of agriculturists to form a Farmers' Club at Malton."


"March 14th,

at Malton with' Mr. M. (Blanch). In the afternoon heard Rev. G. A. Telfer preach at Norton and lecture, on 'Canada' at night. I took the chair."


During his residence on the Wolds Joseph Smith had the honour of being requested to come forward and offer himself as a farmers' candidate for the East Riding, a seat in Parliament being vacant. Such was the esteem and regard he had won amongst the resi­dents in the riding by his strict integrity, his uprightness of character and his staunch religious principles, and also' the very active part he had taken in trying to promote the interest and further the prosperity of agriculture and commerce in the district  At the time of the election in 1880, when the parties were selecting their candidates, one day a carriage full of people drove down the village to Joseph Smith's residence, stating they were a deputation from the Liberal party, sent from Pocklington, request­ing him to come forward and represent their interests. The same day another carriage load of people came-a deputation from the Conservative Association at Pocklington-requesting Joseph Smith to offer himself as their, candidate, assuring him they could carry him victorious at the poll. He thanked them in 'very choice language for the honour and for their appreciation of his services, but he had to decline, being, as he said, nearly sixty years of age; the great change in the mode of living, sitting up all night in Parliament, would tend to undermine his health and constitution.


On April 6th, 1883,

Joseph Smith, with his family, finally left the Wolds and came to South Holme, near Slingsby, to reside once more in his former district. He resumed his work in the old circuits of Pickering and Kirbymoorside, and he also consented to be placed on the plan of the Malton circuit, in which South Holme was situated. During his ten years' sojourn on the Wolds he fulfilled his many arduous appointments Sunday after Sunday without intermission, and on his removal to his new residence he took up his work again with all the vigour and freshness of youth.


"Sunday, May 13th, 1883,

preached at Ebberston, Psalms lxxxvii. 2; evening, Revelations i12:-16. Stayed overnight with Mr. B., at Wilton."


" Sunday, May 20th,

at Normanby Sunday School Anniversary, Revelations i 12."


"June 4th,

at Slings by, Missionary meeting at night (in the chair). Deputation, Rev. Silvester Whitehead."


"June 16th,

at Malton in the afternoon. Heard of the death of my sister, Mrs. Fish, at Scarborough, after a short but painful illness; died last night. 'In the midst of life we are in death.'" "


June 26th,

at Middleton, near Pickering. Took part in lay­ing foundation stones of a new Wesleyan chapel."


"Sunday, July 1st,

had preaching by Mr. Pudsey in the kitchen of the Manor House here, being first time; Mr. Corner having for many years had the services in his house."


"July 10th,

Mr. George Leefe, jun., drove with us to the Jubilee of Marton Sunday school. Public meeting and tea in Mr. Wildsmith's granary."


Passing over the many events during the summer of 1883, in the autumn the diary gives :-


"October. 2nd,

at Kirbymoorside Mutual Improvement Society's first meeting of the season."


"Sunday, December I6th,

preach at Nunnington, afternoon and night, 'Manasseh' and 'Ministry of Angels.'"


"December 27th,

at Norton (Malton) in the afternoon. Opening of Christmas Tree."


"January 17th, 1884,

went to York. Attended annual meeting of Chamber of Agriculture."


"February 6th,

received a letter from Mr. Dawnay requesting me to go to London on a deputation to Privy Council on Foot and Mouth Disease."


"February 6th,

in London, had luncheon with the Hon. Guy Dawnay at one o'clock, then went as a deputation to Lord Carlingford on the Foot and Mouth Disease. At Exeter Hall at night."


"February 7th"

went to London. In the House of Commons from 6.30 to II.15 p.m.; discussion on Foot and Mouth Disease (Animals Act)."


"March 10th,

heard Mr. House preach. in the afternoon and lecture at night in the chapel at Slingsby."


"April 25th,

went with Mr. Corner in the afternoon to Kirby­moorside, heard Dr. Stephenson preach. I took chair at Mission­ary meeting at night."


"May 16th,

visit my brother at Sheffield, who is very ill and feeble; do not expect to see him alive again."


"May 19th,

received a telegram from Sheffield announcing my brother Robert's death."


"July 8th,

at Malton. At night Rev. W. Starr's lecture 'Over the Ferry.' I took chair."


"July 30th,

drove to Welburn to tea and opening of new Harmonium. Miss Kate Hoddinott, Mr. Leefe and Mr. George accompanied us from Slingsby."


"July 31st,

had my uncle from Wildon and Mr. Sowersby visiting us."

The diary during the summer of this year is full of interest; we find almost daily records of visiting and entertaining old friends, taking part in social and religious gatherings, which we have not space to chronicle.


"October 20th,

went by 9.0 a.m. train to Pickering, Opened Wesleyan Bazaar at 11am


"March 3rd, 1885,

heard Rev. E. A. Telfer preach at Norton in the afternoon and lecture on 'Scottish Covenanters' at night. Took chair,"


April 3rd

(Good Friday) drove Miss Hoddinott to Malton.

Heard Rev. Charles Garrett preaches in the afternoon, public meeting at night."


"April 16th,

rode to Pickering. Heard Rev. Johnstone preach in the afternoon; took chair at Missionary meeting at night."


"October 15th,

gave a lecture at Slingsby in the chapel on the 'Introduction of Christianity into Britain.' Also gave the same lecture at Normanby on the evening of November 28th,"


"February 9th, 1886,

drove to Craike, attended funeral of my esteemed friend, Mr. Pape, who for many years resided at “Marton Hill"


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