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AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF REV. 'WILLIAM BURKE
I WAS born in Loudoun county, state of Virginia, on the 13th day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and seventy. My ancestors by my father were from Ireland, and settled in St. Marys, Maryland, about the commencement of the settling of that colony. My grandmother on my mother's side was born in Wales, brought up in London, emigrated to America about 1750, and settled in Fairfax county, Virginia, in the neighborhood of Mount Vernon; was an inmate of the family of General Washington, and married a gentleman by the name of Compton, and settled in a place called Clifton's Neck, in sight of Mount Vernon. My grandfather died before my recollection, and left two sons and three daughters, all of whom married and settled in Fairfax county. They all became wealthy and lived to a good old age. My grandmother lived to the advanced age of one hundred and ten, and died a member of the Church of England.
My grandfather on my father's side had two children by his first wife, who also lived in Fairfax county. After the death of my grandmother he moved to Albemarle county, where he had, by a second wife, several children; and while engaged in opening farm, in the early settlement of that country, was killed by the falling of a tree. With that branch of the family I had no acquaintance. However, in 1810 I became acquainted with some branches of the family who were settled in Cumberland county, Kentucky, and who had lost the original name, aid wrote their nama Burks. They were settled on the Cumberland river, at a town called Burksville.
My father, after his marriage to Rhoda Compton, moved to Loudon county, at that time a frontier county, and was engaged with Washington in what was termed Braddock's war. My father, John Burke, had three eons and one daughter, John, Mary, Anson, and William. John and Mary died when young. My brother Anson is now living in Williamson county, Tenn., at the advanced age of eighty-six. He had four sons and one daughter, all living around him, except William Wesley, who came to Cincinnati, Ohio, and died here in 1849. My father, at the commencement of the Revolution, took the side of liberty, and was among the first who enrolled his name under Colonel Leven Powell, as a minute man, and was in that service one year at Hampton, Virginia, and again at Yorktown, at the taking of Cornwallis, where he suffered every thing but death.
During the summer of 1775, while my father was at Hampton, the first Methodist preacher visited Loudon county; namely, Joseph Everett. My mother went some considerable distance to hear him, in hopes to meet with some intelligence "from my father. I, have no recollection of hearing any more of the Methodists till 1780, when Philip Cox commenced preaching at Bacon Fort old church, the parish in which my father then lived, and in which I was baptized. There being no parson at that time, the Methodists were allowed to preach in the church. I was then ten years old, and can recollect many circumstances that-transpired during that year. It was the fashion at that day for the ladies to wear enormous high rolls on the head, and a report had been in circulation for some time that a calf had been born near Alexandria with one of those rolls on its head. P. Cox gave out that the next time he came round, in four weeks, he would show them a wonder. The whole country was in expectation that he would exhibit the calf, and a great concourse of people assembled. The preacher arrived, but instead of the calf he commenced by giving out his text: "And there appeared a great wonder in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun," etc. This gained the attention of the multitude : and from ' that time Methodism took root in that section of country. In 1781 Francis Poythress and Michael Ellis were stationed on the circuit; and in the winter of 1781 and 1782, under the preaching of Mr. Ellis, I was strangely and deeply affected; but it wore off by degrees; for at that time I was going to school, where we had but little of religion taught. My father and mother joined the society at Royell's, Bacon Fort old church, in the early part of 1780. Nothing very special occurred that waked up my attention till the summer of 1784, when it was given out that Thomas Vasey, one of the newly-ordained preachers, was to preach in Leesburg. Ho preached in the court-house to a very large concourse of people ; and numbers who iad been in the habit of hearing the Methodists preach, were astonished to hear him perform the morning service as laid down in the Methodist prayer- book. The practice and the book have Iqng since been laid aside. The means of education were very limited in those days, and in that part of the country; consequently, I was limited to what was then called an English education, all of which I completed in the years 1785 and -1786. In the spring of 1787 my father determined to remove to the state of Georgia. We accordingly set out early in the spring. The preceding year had been very unfavorable for crops in the south; and having arrived in North Carolina, not far from Guilford court-house, we fell into a neighborhood of Virginians, from Fairfax county, and with whom my father and mother had bceu acquainted, and they persuaded us to spend the summer with them. We did so, -with the intention of going to Georgia the next spring ; but my father being pleased with the country, determined to settle himself in North Carolina, and accordingly purchased a tract of land in one mile of the high ford, Haw river. In the neighborhood I formed new associations, became very profligate and vain, and entered fully into all the amusements of the day. My dear mother was very pious, and I was her darling boy. The course I was then pursuing gave her much pain and affliction. She .used every means in her power to dissuade me from it, and used to pray for me day and night. In the latter part of the year 1790 I was awakened under the preaching of Isaac Lowe. In the fall of that year the society established a weekly prayer meeting, and I was a constant attendant, and had formed the resolution never to stop short of obtaining experimental religion. The practice then among the Methodists was to call upon all the seekers of religion to pray in public at the prayer meeting. I was called upon, and took up my cross, and continued to pray at every prayer -meeting. In the month of February, 1791, after the preacher concluded, he opened the door to receive members. I went forward alone and gave my name, and there was great joy manifested at the return of so great a prodigal, and I was the first-fruits of a great revival. In the month of March I attended a quarterly meeting at Smith's meetinghouse, on Guilford circuit. On Saturday and Saturday night I was in great distress, and .slept b.ut little. On Sunday morning early I betook myself to the woods and wandered about and prayed earnestly for deliverance. At nine o'clock the love-feast began. I can not recollect much that was done. I fell senseless to the floor, and the first I can recollect I was on my feet giving glory to God in loudest strains, to the astonishment of many.
After my ecstasy was over, and I came to reflect, my load of sin was gone. I felt no more condemnation, but could not say that I was born again. In this situation I remained for eight days; and on the next Sunday evening, after having returned from meeting, I betook myself to the woods, and at the root of a large whiteoak-tree, • while engaged in prayer, God gave me the witness of the Spirit, and from that moment I went on my way rejoicing. " We continued our prayer meeting with increasing interest, and very soon one and another would get converted, and our meetings would sometimes continue all night. The class-leader, who in those days would open and conduct the prayer meeting, put me forward to open the meetings, and I commenced after prayer to give an exhortation. The heavenly flame spread through the neighborhood, and the neighboring classes caught the holy fire, and in a short time hundreds attended our night meetings. I have often walked five and six miles to a night meeting, aad spent the whole night, while the mourners were down in the house and all over the yard, crying mightily to God for mercy. That year George M'Kinney, a son of thunder, was sent to Guilford circuit, who entered fully into the work, and great numbers were added to the Church. In the month of June of this year, I made my first attempt at preaching from a text. The words were, " Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to the Lord, who will have mercy upon him, and to our God, who will abundantly pardon." I had great liberty, and found favor in the eyes of the people. I continued to exercise my gift in exhortation and preaching whenever opportunity presented. In tlie month gf August I attended a quarterly meeting at the Hawfield, New Hope circuit, at the Tartemele. There was a great collection of people on Sunday. Thomas Ware was elder; but Thomas Bowen was at the quarterly meeting on a tour south, and preached the first sermon on Sunday; and at the close of the sermon they set me up to exhort. I had a voice like thunder, and it seemed as though there was a fire in my bones. The dry bones began to tremble, and sinners began to leave the house; the fire was too warm for them. Upon the whole, we had a good time. Many in that quarter had never seen the like before. Brother Isaac Lowe was then traveling on New Hope circuit. He was a married man, and his family lived in the neighborhood of my father's, and we returned in company home. In the fall, at the beginning of October, brother Lowe insisted that I should accompany him round New Hope circuit. Accordingly, I arranged my business so as to make the tour of six weeks. We went on together, preaching time about, till he was taken sick and returned home, and left me to complete the round. I did so, and then returned home, where 1 found him recovered from his illness. One of the preachers had left Guilford circuit and gone home. I was requested to take his place. I did so, and traveled that winter on that circuit. On one of my rounds I fell in with Thomas Anderson, the presiding elder. He inquired if I had any permit to exhort or preach. I told him I had not, and before we parted he gave me a license, which was the only license I ever had, till my name was on the mitfutes of the annual conference. The annual conference for that year was at M'Knight's, on the Yad- kin river, on the second of April. There was no formal application made by me to travel, and no vacancy offering, I returned home, and had thoughts of settling myself for life, and began to make preparations for building a house and opening a farm ; but my mind was not at rest. During the summer and fall I used to preach throe, four, and five times a week, and ride forty and fifty miles. The conference for this year was held at Green Hills, at which conference I was admitted on trial, and appointed to West New River circuit, on the head waters of the Kanawha river, in the state of yirginia. On my way to my appointment I stopped at home a few days, and having fur nished myself with several suits of clothes, I started aL alone for the west, crossed the Blue Ridge at the Flower Gap, entered the circuit at brother Forbes' s, on what was called the Glades, lying between the Blue Ridge and New river. This was about the first of February, 1792. This was a four weeks' circuit, and between four and five hundred miles round. It extended in length from the three forks of New river, over-the Alleghany Mountains, on the waters of Roanoke; and from north to south from Walker's creek to the Glades, near the Blue Ridge. Thq. country is very mountainous, high and cold; and in Montgomery, Wythe, and Grayson counties it is too cold to produce Indian corn with any degree of certainty. Rye was produced in great abundance.
The first preachers that visited that country was in the year 1783. It was then called the Holston country. The head waters of the South Fork of the Holston extended as far east as Wythe and the borders of Grayson counties, extending west as far as the Three Islands. In this tract of country the first preachers began their operations. They were Jeremiah Lambert, Henry Willis, Mark Whitaker, Mark More, and Reuben Ellis, the elder The district included Salisbury and Yadkin circuits, in North Carolina, and Holston in the west. In 1787 the Holston circuit was divided into two circuits, Holston and Nolachucky, and Philip Bruce appointed elder. Two new preachers were sent — Jeremiah Masten and Thomas Ware — in 1788. Two new circuits were made out of the old ones this year; the Holston circuit, embracing Holston, and all the settlements on the Clinch river, including the counties of Washington and Russell, in Virginia, and Blount county, in the Western territory. French Broad included all the settlements west and south of the main Holston to the frontiers bordering on the Cherokee nation. West New river was this year made a circuit, and Greenbriar added, which was composed of the new settlements on Greenbriar river, and part of the head waters of the James river; Edward Morris elder In 1789 John Tunel was presiding elder and Bottetourt circuit added. In 1790 two districts were formed; one was composed of West New Kiver, Russell, Holston, and Green circuits— Charles Hardy presiding elder. This year John M'Gee and John West were on Green circuit; John West is still living in the bounds of the Pittsburg conference. Bottetourt, Greenbriar, and Kanawha circuits — Jeremiah Able presiding elder. This year the Little Kanawha circuit was formed, and Jacob Lurton was the preacher in charge. In 1793 he was on Salt River circuit, Kentucky, and married a Miss Tooley, on Bear Grass, Jefferson county, and located, and for many years lived on Floyd's Fork of Salt river. He was an original genius, and a useful preacher. In 1791 Mark Whitaker was presiding elder, and Charles Hardy and John West were on the West New River circuit. Charles Hardy located this year, and the latter part of the year I succeeded him. John West remained with me on the circuit till the Holston conference, on the 15th of May, 1792. Nothing material transpired while on this circuit. The state of religion was at a low ebb in all the circuits. Most of the preachers had not been much in the work for several years, and Discipline had been much neglected. Mr. Asbury, on his return from the Kentucky conference, met the conference at Huffaker's, Rich Valley of Holston, on the safety of their families, left me to make the best of my way. I arrived a little before noon, but found it would be impossible to collect a congregation. The peo- • pie were moving in and concentrating at a certain point, for the purpoae of fortifying, and by night we were the frontier house. After dark the lights were all put out, and each one sat down with his gun on his lap. One of the company started about nine o'clock to go where the Indians were collected for fortifying; but soon returned, and said the Indians were plenty in the neighborhood. I immediately determined ..to make my journey to the next preaching-place, which was about ten miles, and I was obliged to travel under cover of the night ; but I had one difficulty to encounter, having nothing but a small path, and the river to cross, and an island to reach in the river. The night was dark, and the timber very thick on the island, and I could not prevail on any of thejn to leave the house or give me any assistance; however, I put my trust in God and set off. After having passed the first part of the river I alighted from my horse, and undertook to keep the path on foot. I succeeded beyond my expectation, j eached the shore at the proper point, and proceeded without meeting with any difficulty. About two o'clock I arrived at the house, where my appointment was for that day, proceeded to the door, and sought admittance, but found no inmates. I knew there were cabins on the opposite side of a marsh, and I commenced hallooing as loud as I could. I soon brought some of them out, who wished to know who I was, and what I wanted. They suspected that the Indians wished to decoy them, and were preparing to give me a warm reception of powder and lead, when the lady, at whose house we preached, came out and knew my voice. They then came over and conducted me to the place where the whole neighborhood was collected, and the next day I recrossed the French Broad river, which placed m» beyond the reach of danger. I passed up through the circuit, leaving tha frontier appointments on the south side of the river, which were Pine Chapel, Little and Big Pigeon. The first intelligence I had from that quarter was, that all the inhabitants in the neighborhood of the Pine Chapel were massacred in one night by the Indians. The first General conference in the United States met late in the fall of this year. The presiding elder and S. Weeks, from the Holston circuit, both left for the General conference; and the presiding elder moved me from Green circuit and put me in charge of the Holston, and sent brother J. Ward to fill my ,place. Brother Ward had but moderate talents, but was a devoted and good man; and through his instrumentality good was done on the Holston circuit. In the neighborhood of the Salt- Works a number had been added to the Church. Among the number was the heiress, Miss Sally Campbell, daughter of General Campbell, who distinguished himself at the battle of King's Mountain. Her mother, Mrs. Russell, had, for some time, been a member of the Church, and was among the . most excellent ones of the earth. Late in the fall of this year General Russell and family made a visit to the eastern part of Virginia, among their old friends and relations. The General was taken sick and died. His daughter, Chloe Russell, had just married a circuit preacher by the name of Hubbard Saunders. During their visit Miss Sarah Campbell was married to Francis Preston, Esq., of Virginia, whose son is now senator in Congress from South Carolina. The surviving part of the family did not return during my stay on the circuit. We had some good times on our field of labor, at Baker's, near the Three Islands, and at AcufFs. 1 remained on the circuit till Christmas, when, by the direction of the presiding elder, brother Norman and myself changed, and I was on Clinch circuit. This was ft frontier circuit, the whole north side of it being exposed to the savages. ' On this circuit I first began to ant bear- meat, and buffalo tongues. I entered this circuit with a determination, by the help of God, to have a revival of religion, and in some degree succeeded. It was a three weeks' circuit, and I was alone, without even a local preacher to help me. Through the winter we had a considerable revival at Elk Garden, head of Clinch river, at Bickley's Station, and at several .other preaching-places. On the last Saturday and Sunday in March, 1793, we held our quarterly meeting at Bickley's Station. * We had a good time. During the past year we had many conflicts, a new country Indian warfare going on all the winter on our southern borders. The preachers had received about enough quarterage to ketp soul and body together. On Monday morning, after the quarterly meeting, I started for the annual conference, which met on the third day of April. We met Bishop Asbury and William Spencer, from the Virginia conference, and Henry Hill, from North Carolina. The conference business concluded on Saturday; Sunday was taken up in preaching; and on Monday morning we started for Kentucky. Several of our friends volunteered to guide us through the wilderness. Francis Asbury, Barnabas M'Henry, Henry Hill, James Ward, and William Burke were all the preachers. These, together with some who met us at Bean's Station, on Holston, made our company up to sixteen. We were all pretty well armed except the Bishop. It was about one hundred and thirty miles through the wilderness, with but one house in Powell's Valley, where we staid the first night. Next morning, by sunrise, we crossed Cumberland Mountain, and entered into the bosom of the wilderness.
before we left the settlements. It was to make a rope long enough to tie to the trees all around the camp when we stopped at night, except a small passage for us to retreat, should the Indians surprise us ; the rope to be so fixed as to strike the Indians below the knee, in which case they would fall forward, and we would retreat into the dark and pour in a fire upon them from our rifles. We accordingly prepared ourselves with the rope, and placed it on our pack-horse. We had to pack on the horses we rode corn sufficient to feed them'for three days, and our own provisions, beside our saddle-bags of clothes. Through the course of the day nothing material transpired till very late in the afternoon, say less than an hour before sunset, when passing up a stony hollow from Richland creek, at the head of which was the war-path from the northern Indians to the southern tribes, we heard, just over the point of a hill, a noise like a child crying in great distress. We soon discovered there were Indians there, and the reason why they used that stratagem to decoy us was, that a few days before they had defeated a company, known for a long time as M'Parland's defeat, and a number were killed, and several children supposed to be lost in the woods. We immediately put whip to our horses, and in a few minutes crossed the ridge and descended to Camp creek about sunset, when we called a halt to consult on what was best to be done; and on putting it to vote whether we proceed on our journey, every one was for proceeding but one of the preachers, who said it would kill his horse to travel that night. The Bishop all this time was sitting on his horse in silence, and on the vote being taken he reined up his steed and said, " Kill man kill horse, kill horse first;" and in a few minutes we made our arrangements for the night.
The night being two as a rear guard, to keep some distance behind and bring intelligence every half hour, that we might know whether they were in pursuit of us ; for we could not go faster than a walk. They reported that they were following us till near twelve o'clock. We were then on the Big Laurel river. We agreed to proceed, and alighted from our horses and continued on foot till daybreak, when we arrived at the Hazel Patch, where we stopped and fed our horses, and took some refreshment. We were mounted, and on our journey by the rising of the sun; but by this time we w.ere all very much fatigued, and we yet had at least between forty and fifty miles before us for that day. That night about dark we arrived at our good friend Willis Green's, near Stanford, Lincoln court-house, having been on horseback nearly forty hours, and having traveled about one hunared and ten miles in that time. I perfectly recollect that at supper I handed my cup for a second cup of tea, and before it reached me I was fast asleep, and had to be.waked up to receive it. Part of us remained at Mr. Green's over Sunday, and preached at several places in the neighborhood. The Bishop and brother M'Henry proceeded on next morning to attend a quarterly meeting at brother Francis Clark's, on the waters of Salt river, six miles west of Danville. On the 15th of April, 1793, the conference met at Mastersen's Station. Preachers present, F.rancis Asbury, bishop; Francis Poythress, Henry Burchet, Jacob Lur- ton, James Ward, John Page, John Ball, Richard Bird, Benjamin Northcott, and William Burke. Barnabas M'Henry, from the Holston district, and Henry Hill, who traveled with Bishop Asbury, were also present. Nine preachers in all for Kentucky and Cumberland included, Nashville and the three counties of Davidson, Sumner, and Robinson, including a few settlements in Kentucky, in the neighborhood where Russelville is now dark, and nothing but a narrow path, we appointed two to proceed in front, to lead the way and keep the path, and I will here introduce a plan that Mr. Asbury suggested all the settlements on the East and North Forks of situated. We received our appointments at the close of the conference, and separated in love and harmony. I was- this year appointed to Danville circuit, in charge, and. John Page a^ helper. We entered upon our work with a determination to use our best endeavors to promote the Redeemer's kingdom. The circuit was in but a poor condition. Discipline had been very much neglected, and numbers had their names on the class-papers who had not met their class for months. We applied ourselves to the discharge of our duty and enforced the Discipline, and, during the course of the summer, disposed of upward of one hundred. We had some few additions, but, under God, laid the foundation for a glorious revival, the next and following years. The bounds and extent of this circuit were large, including the counties of Mercer, Lincoln, Garrard, and Madison ; the west part of the circuit included the head waters of Salt river, and Chaplin on the north, bounded by Kentucky river south and east, and extended as far as the settlements — taking four weeks to perform the round. There were three log meetiftg-houses in the circuit; one in Madison county, called Proctor's Chnpel; one in the forks of Dix river, Garrett's meeting-house; and one on Shoenea run, called Shoney run. Not far from Harrod's Station, in Mercer county, during the course of this year, a new meetinghouse was erected in Garrard county, considered the best meeting-house in the country, and they named it Burke's Chapel. I remained on Danville circuit till the first of April, 1794, and on the fifteenth our conference commenced at Louis's Chapel, in Jessamine county, in the bounds of Lexington.
Previous to the meeting of the conference we raised a company of twelve persons to proceed to the seat of the conference, for the purpose of guarding Bishop Asbury through the wilderness We met a company at the Crab Orchard, the place where we usually met by advertisement, circulated for the purpose of collecting a sufficient number for mutual protection against the Indians. The company, when assembled, consisted of about sixty, all well armed. We organized that night, and I was appointed commander. In the morning, all things being in readiness for our departure, we proceeded through the wilderness. The day prewous there had started a large company, and among the number there were four preachers, two Baptist and two Dunkards. The company, with whom they traveled, had treated them in such an ungen- tlemanly and unchristian manner during the first day and night, that on the morning of the second day they all four started in advance, and had not proceeded more than one mile before they were surprised by a party of Indians, and all four killed and scalped, and their horses and all they had taken off by the Indians. We camped the first night not far from Big Laurel river,- and next morning passed the place where the dead bodies of the preachers were thrown into a sink-hole and covered in part with some logs, and the wild beasts had torn and mangled them in the most shocking manner. That day we crossed the Cumberland river, and passed up the narrows to Turkey creek, and camped on the bank. I had not slept on any of the two preceding nights, and that night I intended to take a good sleep. Accordingly, after placing out the sentinels and securing my horse, I spread my saddle- blanket and my saddle and saddle-bags for my pillow, and laid me down close to my horse, and was, in a few minutes, sound asleep. It was not an hour before the company was alarmed. Some said they heard Indians, others affirmed that they heard them when cutting cane for their horses, and heard their dogs barking at their camp up the creek; and before they awakened me the greater part of th« company were on their horses and had left the sentinels at their posts. Sueh wae the panic that I immediately harn«ssed up my horse and mffunted him, and had the guards brought ia. The night was very dark, and we had to cross the creek immediately. The bank was very steep, and we had to cross in Indian file; and before all passed over the bank became very slippery, and the horses would get nearly to the top and slide back into the creek again. I was in front, and the word would pass along the line, " Halt in front." At length all got safely over, and we proceeded about four miles to Cannon creek. The night being very dark, and finding great difficulty to keep the path, I ordered a halt, and directed every man to turn out to the left and alight and hold his horse by the bridle. They accordingly did so, and I threw the reins of my bridle over my arm and laid down at the root of a beech-tree, and was soon asleep. I had previously given orders that we should form one hour before daybreak and be jon the road, in brder to elude the Indians, should they be in pursuit of us. We did so, and crossed 'the Cumberland Mountains early in the morning, and that night arrived at Bean's Station, near the Hol- ston river, where we met tie intelligence that Bishop Asbury, in consequence of ill health, could not attend the conference in Kentucky.
A large collection of emigrants was already met for the purpose of crossing the wilderness. The number was about one hundred and twenty, together with a great number of pack-horses. On the next morning we started in Indian file, pack-horses and all, making a line about a mile in length. It was determined by the company that the guard which had come through to meet the Bishop should bring up the rear. Nothing transpired through the course of the first day or night worthy of notice. Early on the second day we came to the ford of the Cumberland front of the company arrived at the bank of the river, 0 party of Indians being on the opposite skore fired upon them ; but the distance was such that no injury was done. None had courage to attempt crossing over, and when we, who were in the rear, came up, the whole company was crowded together, and maijy, both men and women, were as pale as death, and some weeping, not knowing what course to take. I immediately called out for volunteers, who would venture to cross the river. Out of the whole cftmpany we could only get eleven to undertake the hazardous duty. On our arriving at the opposite bank we alighted from our horses and took trees and awaited the approach of the Indians. None appearing we proceeded to the top of the bank; finding the course clear we beckoned them to proceed crossing, while' we stood guard. No accident occurred througn the remainder of that day. At night we encamped in an unfavorable pdsition- — a tieavy thunder-shower passing over us forced us to stop. In that situation, after we had tied up our horses and built up our fires, we proceeded to place out the guards, when many who had not been used to such fatigue made themselves as comfortable as the nature of things would admit, and laid down to rest. I found from the manner in which the horses behaved that Indians were about with the intention of stealing some of our horses. Consequently, I kept on my feet the whole night, passing round and through the camp. The night passed off without any interruption. The third day at night we arrived at the Crab Orckard, and on the fourth day I proceeded to the conference at Louis's Chapel. We had at this an increase of two preachers — John Metcalf, who had come through the wilderness with us from the Virginia conference, and Thomas Scott, now Judge Scott, of Chilicothe, from the Baltimore conference. The presiding elder, F. Poythress, presided in the conference. The business having been gone through, I was dispatched to the Virginia conference with the proceedings of our conference, and to receive deacon's orders. The conference met at Joseph Mitchel's, on James river. Here we met Mr. Asbury, who had partly recovered from his sickness. At this conference, which was held on the 2Gth May, I received my appointment on Hinkston circuit, Kentucky. This circuit included Clark county, Bourbon, and Montgomery; bounded on the north and east by the frontier settlements, on the south by the Kentucky river, and on the west by Lexington circuit. It was a three weeks' circuit, that had been taken off from Lexington ; here I was alone. At my first quarterly meeting I was removed to Salt River circuit — the preacher having left — and put in charge. Here I remained two quarters under very embarrassed circumstances, it being the summer of Wayne's campaign; and great numbers were out in the service. This was the most difficult circuit in the bounds of the(r conference. It was a four weeks' circuit, and between four and five hundred miles round. It included Washington, Nelson, Jefferson, Shelby, and Green counties; bounded on the north by the Kentucky river, on the east by Danville circuit, on the south by the frontier settle* ments on Green river, including where Greensburg .and Elizabethtown are now situated, and on the west by thtt Ohio river. Nothing worthy of record occurred, except hard times. I was reduced to the last pinch. My clothes were nearly all gone. I had patch upon patch and patch by patch, and I received only money sufficient to buy a waistcoat, and not enough of that to pay for the making, during the two quarters I remained on the circuit. After the second quarterly meeting I was changed, by the presiding elder, to Lexington circuit. This was the best circuit in the bounds of the conference, both for numbers and liberality. In this circuit I met river; it was very much swollen, and when the •