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-Rev. J. B. Thomas, of Dubuque, Iowa, says: "Last Wednesday evening we had a crowded prayermeeting to pray for the dear Home Mission Society. | That Society has saved our church; we know it is doing a grand and glorious work. You just ought to have heard the prayers of our people in its behalf. God led us to most earnest prayers. This contribution of $25 to the Emergency Fund is a goodly sum, considering our exceeding heavy burden. It was cheerfully, and what is more, it was prayerfully made."

-The next is $20 from a pastor in New Hampshire, whose salary is only $300, and whose church numbers less than thirty members. Truly this is consecrated money.

From the young Baptist Church in Salt Lake City, Utah, comes a draft for $75, with a promise of more to follow. Who three years ago would have ventured the prediction that by this time there would be a Baptist church in that city to do so handsome a thing? The little stock, then, has already become a fruit-bearing tree. Dr. De Witt says: "I am preaching every night, Saturday excepted. Our lecture room is full and souls are converted." -New Mexico responds with a contribution of $7.30 from the Las Vegas Church, of which our beloved and veteran brother, Rev. S. Gorman, is pas


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-California unites to swell the offerings. Rev. J. C. Jordan, of Fresno City, a mission field, writes very interestingly of the spirit with which their offering was made. If a thousand other pastors would do likewise, what magnificant results could be reached! "Your appeal touched a responsive chord in my heart, and drove me to prayer. At our next prayermeeting I read it, and it was made the subject of prayer and of remark for the evening. It was a precious meeting. We then resolved to do something for the cause.

"I prepared a letter and sent to every member of the church and Sunday school and congregation. You know that we are poor, and that less than three years ago the church was organized with seven members, and that now we have but seventy-two, so that but little was expected. But, to our surprise, when the envelopes were opened and money counted, they contained $52. To this amount the church added $5, making at present writing $57. This will, I think, in a few days grow to $60. Our Chinese boys gave about seven dollars. "The amount will be sent you in a few days by the treasurer of our church. So keep up good courage, my dear brother. I do not believe the Baptists of our country will fail you, or that they will act cowardly in the day of battle. What our churches need is information, and this must largely be given through the pas tors and our religious journals. Keep the facts before the people! Let the command along the whole line, and the "Baptist Host" will move swiftly to battle and to victory, while Truth will be laurel-crowned and reign without a rival."


-Wakefield Church, Mass., after a stirring talk by their pastor, Rev. R. D. Grant, one Sunday evening, responded in pledges exceeding $100, which is to be increased to about $200. Pastor Grant says, "Their mouth was filled with laughter," when the returns were counted. So was ours when we heard the good


-The Wisconsin churches, under the wise suggestion of Brother Halteman, general missionary, are to give an illustration of their appreciation of the Society's work in that State, by a special offering for the Emergency Fund.

-From the Alabama Baptist Normal and Theological school at Selma, Alabama, comes an offering of $50, with the following excellent letter from President E.M. Brawley, showing also what Alabama Baptists propose to do:

In all

"Just before school closed the attention of our teachers and students was directed to the consideration of the Society's present financial condition, and the sum of $50 was immediately subscribed in aid of the Emergency Fund. I have just collected the last dollar, and enclose you draft for the whole amount. my experience I do not know of an instance where money was more cheerfully given to any benevolent object, and I feel sure that you will appreciate this willing spirit far more than the small amount which we have raised. This act of intelligent appreciation on the part of students shows what they will do when in the future they shall have charge of the churches. "I also enclose you the resolutions adopted at the recent meeting of our State Convention. The purpose is to raise at least $500 for the Society's general work. By vote of the Convention, the collecting of this money was entrusted to me. I shall at once begin to work up the matter through the Pioneer and by circulars. My intention is to use all my advanced points on the day for the collection. It will be good students, placing them all over the State at important training for them.

"This annual day for the Society is to be a permanent thing; and we may reasonably expect that the interest and the amount raised will increase as the years come to us.

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Resolutions adopted at the recent annual meeting of the Colored Baptist State Convention of Alabama :

Whereas, The American Baptist Home Mission Society has generously given aid to us in our school work for a number of years, and it is proper that we should in some practical way manifest our appreciation of the help thus furnished; and,

Whereas, The Society, although burdened now with a debt of almost $100,000, is still helping us; be it, therefore,

Resolved, First, That as a slight token of the gratitude we feel for the kindness manifested by the American Baptist Home Mission Society, we do raise during the fiscal year the sum of $500 for the Society's general work.

Resolved, Second, That the second Sunday in March 1885, be set apart as "Home Mission Society Day," at which time the claims of the Society will be presented by our pastors, and collections taken for the Society.

-Rev. T. S. Barbour, of Fall River, sends greetForward!" ring outings, with information of $158 as a special offering, soon after their regular contribution.

-The Hackensack, N. J., Church Sunday school,

after hearing extracts read to them from the November and December MONTHLY, "promptly, cheerfully, joyfully authorized the Treasurer to send $100 to the Emergency Fund." Their prayers accompany the offering.

-And here comes a touching letter from one of our mission fields, Dell Rapids, Dakota. It contains $5.30 as the offering of the Sunday school to the Emergency Fund, and the Superintendent writes: "Our school say that they are too poor to have a Christmas tree, but we are not to poor too help raise this fund. If all the Baptist Sunday schools in the United States would raise as much, the amount would be provided. And they are nearly all better


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tress and abandonment of their fields.
ren in charge of our work at the West declare
that already salaries are too small to secure per-
manency in the pastorates and to obtain the
kind of men we need for many of our mission
fields. The sacrifices which some missionaries
of the Society are making, refusing better offers,
because they deem it their duty to remain at
their posts, are very great, and it would be cruel-
ty to make any further reduction in their sala-

-"I send enclosed one dollar for the Emergency Fund. I feel that it would be a pleasure, if means would admit, to give a thousand; but if all gave by thousands the poor widows would not have the blessing of giving."-Mrs. T. P. T., New Hamp-ries. shire.

-"Hold the Fort! Don't retrench! I send enclosed $5 for the Emergency Fund, and that would be $5,000 for some of our number. I don't want to talk about poverty till the dear old Society is head to the wind again."-J. M., Bangor, Maine.

The old ship that has weathered many a storm is just now rounding Cape Horn, and with the requisite amount of financial fuel for the Emergency Fund will soon be out in the Pacific Ocean.

-A lady in Northeastern New York sends $10 saying: "I wish I conld multiply it a hundred fold, but although it is but a handful of meal, I lay it upon the altar with a cheerful, glad heart, with the prayer on my lips that God will bless our grand Home Mission Society in its glorious work."

-From the mission church in Albany, Oregon, comes a Christmas offering, with the statement that when the envelopes were opened at their Christmas entertainment, "to the surprise of many, the offerings amounted to nearly $50, and have since reached that sum. The resident members number less than thirty and had already liberally contributed for the Home Mission work."

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By the second method, other and equally great difficulties are encountered. Reduction of the working force at the Rooms is impossible, without serious detriment to the affairs of the Society. To reduce the number of district secretaries would make but a slight saving, while it would be the suicidal act of one who, from false principles of economy, should decline to incur the expense of ploughing and sowing his fields, and so be without food when a harvest might have been reaped.

Shall it begin in the schools at the South? Suppose the aggregate of teachers' salaries to be $60,000 per year. We attempt to reduce this to $48,000 by diminishing the number of instruct


One in five must go, and this too as they average. If the president and some of the chief assistants are retained, then a larger proportion than one in five of the teachers with smaller salaries must needs leave, in order to secure such reduction. But when students are flocking to these institutions beyond our power to accomodate them, and when the force is now at the lowest efficient point, how is it possible to make reduction here?

Can we reduce the number of missionaries There are two methods of retrenchment: one, among the colored people? They average by the reduction of salaries; the other, by the re- hardly one to a State now. To do less would be duction of the number of missionaries. In order to do next to nothing. Among the Indians the that expenditures may not exceed receipts, missionary force is so small that a further dimsuppose that retrenchment on a scale of twenty inution would be a disgrace to us. What field per cent. is necessary. By the first method, sal- shall we abandon in Mexico, where the harvest is aries would be reduced twenty per cent., or one- ripening for the reaper? Shall we cut down fifth. This would require the general cutting expenses one-fifth among the Chinese workers down of the salaries of many teachers in our on the Pacific coast? If so, then at several

promising stations our missions must be suspended. Must reduction, then, fall upon the missionary force at large in the West and among the foreign populations? If the lot is to fall upon every fifth man among our French, German, and Scandinavian missionaries; if every fifth group of believers gathered with great effort from the bondage of error, and reaching forth to rescue others, are to be left shepherdless and a prey to wolves—who is prepared to take the responsibility of such action? Our great mission fields of the West are of three kinds: first, those where pioneer work is performed by missionaries who look up the lost sheep, who go where there are no churches or Sunday schools, and out of chaos endeavor to bring religious order and church organizations. Which of these men-all too few now-shall we say must abandon his post? Second, those fields where within the past three years, as in Dakota, churches have been organized, and where the missionary pastors, occupying frequently several stations, have made a strong and favorable impression upon the community. Shall the fatal lot fall on every fifth field of this character, and leave the small, poor, but promising interest utterly prostrate?

Third, those fields, which in one, two, or three years will be self-supporting. To cut off every fifth missionary in such a field would, in most instances, dishearten the church, scatter the congregation, and hereafter require twice or thrice the expenditure to bring it up again and carry it forward to self-support that is now required to take it to that point.

These are some of the difficulties of retrenchment. There are grave business as well as moral aspects of the matter to be considered, and only those who have known the strain upon the sympathy and upon the judgment in attempting such retrenchment can fully understand these difficulties. If a general reduction all around is impossible-if, for example, it is impossible in the Society's educational operations, then manifestly a heavier reduction must be made in the missionary fields elsewhere, amounting not merely to one-fifth but to one-quarter or more of the missionary force.

Our aim is to hold what we have and to possess what we ought; and, somehow, we believe God will enable us to do it for his own glory in North America. But as he works through human agencies, does he not summon all his people now to come up with more liberal offerings to the help of the Lord against the mighty?

Churches desiring to try the "envelope system," in taking their offerings for Home Missions, will be furnished with printed envelopes for this purpose on application to the Corresponding Secretary of the Society, without charge. It works so well in many cases that very likely others may wish to make the experiment, but are prevented from doing so on account of the trouble involved in procuring and printing the envelopes. So we have decided to help them in the good work.


The sudden death of this good man, early Sunday morning January 11th, carried sorrow to

a large circle of friends, and not less to the con

stituency of the Home Mission Society, which had been so long and so well served by him in his wise counsels and his liberal offerings. The regular meeting of the Board coming on the day following, appropriate resolutions were adopted, which are herewith presented:

Resolved, That the Executive Board of the American Baptist Home Mission Society have learned with profound sorrow of the death of Samuel S. Constant, Esq., of this city, who from 1861 to 1862 and subsequently from 1869 to 1884 was a member of this Board, and from 1882 to 1884 its chairman, resigned only when he felt that he could not properly attend to his duties in these positions; and who by his large-heartedness, his ripe business experience, his sound judgment, his liberality, his devotion to the interests of the Society, and especially by his earnest Christian spirit, greatly endeared himself to all associated with him in the Board.

Resolved, That we hereby extend to his afflicted family our sincere sympathy in the great loss they have sustained.

Resolved, That the Board as a body attend the funeral services of our deceased brother.

He was born at Newburyport, Mass., December 17, 1817, received his education in Boston, and in early life came to New York. Here for about a generation his name has been well known in connection with religious and philanthropic matters. He was one of the first board of trustees of Vassar College, was an active member of the Board of Managers of the Tract Society, was for years chairman of the Baptist Mission Society of New York city, and, as stated in the resolutions, for a long time on the Board of the Home Mission Society. He had a lively in

terest in the evangelization of the French and the Germans, and was much interested in the establishment of the German Department of Rochester Theological Seminary.

His manly, hearty manner, his noble appearance, his sagacious counsels, his generous acts, will long be remembered by those whose privilege it was to know him well. By his removal a great void has been made in the church, in the Society, and in other circles where he was ever welcomed and honored. The question that presses upon us is: Where are the younger men who are coming up to fill the places thus made



"Watchman, What of the Night?"

Uriah Sparks, a Baptist, and recent arrival from New Brunswick, Canada, was elected superintendent, and I obtained Sunday-school supplies from Brother Thearle, of Chicago. The news of my next appointment had gone fourteen miles down the valley, and this time I met Sister Price, a Baptist, who faced that fourteen miles, in a cold day, to hear me and the first sermon in the Black Hills she had heard. She sought an appointment by me in her neighborhood. "Come once, if you cannot any more," she said. Having so many similar calls I could stand no longer my slow movements on foot, and hence incurred the heavy debt I owe for an outfit. By this time I was a long way from the settlement.

The purchase made, I started on the drive to Sister Price's. The route from my starting-point took me over much that was new and difficult to travel. The first trip over the country here, to a stranger, is bewildering. The numerous trails, the rise and fall of the route over high bluffs, and short turns into gulches, especially, as in this case, if there be no one near to inquire your course, make traveling, to the stranger, uncomfortably a study of trails. Toward night I became a little anxious to see somebody besides coyotes, or antelopes, or the broad horns of

Missionary Experiences in the Black Hills, Texas herds. At the edge of evening the dim trail I



I cannot tax your time and patience with a tithe of the details of even one trip, which sometimes embraces more than 300 miles travel.

Did you ever think that a circumstance may fill a large horizon in our own mind, but when stated formally to another shrivels almost out of sight? Yet I must run the risk of all that in this writing.

While I was "rustling" on foot this cold weather I found myself one day shut up to an unwelcome emergency. My objective point was to find the Wilson settlement. This took me over miles of up hill and down gulches. Being wholly unacquainted with the route, I did not calculate upon much water, or streams without bridges.

At a lonely point, on a dim trail, I came to Butte River, and could find no foot-crossings or bridges. I had no change of garments with me, and the weather | was too cold to travel with wet clothes, and the day was too far spent to travel far in a vain search for a bridge. Besides, I must, that night, reach the settlement. Hence, after many doubts and fears of the consequences, I disrobed and bundled my garments and waded in. Whew! wasn't it cold!-colder even than I anticipated. That night I reached the settlement, and no man in the Black Hills knows how I crossed that stream. Next day I got out an appointment at the new school building, preached, and contracted with the people for a Sunday school at my next visit. The time came, and it was done. Deacon

was on led along the crown of a high bluff, and at close intervals, around the tip ends of terrific jaws of earth or chasms of death that opened downward into dismal gulfs, into which you may look if you dare to, or have the nerve to, hundreds and thousands of feet, I saw an old trail that was actually cut in two or crossed by one of these awful chasms, and the trail I was driving on that night was but a bend of the old trail, or cut-off around this fearful seam in the hills.

Evidently but recently a mighty shaft from the sky, a cloud-burst, had descended at that point and suddenly cut away this path of man. Soon I began to descend and enter the narrow valley of the muchdreaded Bell Fourche River. A sudden turn in the trail downward brought me along-side of one of these dismal and dangerous chasms. The off-wheels grated along within twenty inches of it. The descent is so steep my horse almost dragged on his haunches in his efforts to save his driver from rolling rapidly down to destruction.

But, safely the river's edge is reached. The thing I dreaded most was driving through it. It was night; I could not see the opposite shore plainly enough to know the course to take. I could see where to drive in, but where to drive out was the problem. Hit or miss, I went in. When half way accross, the current became so stiff I turned half round and headed up, being determined to go back if I could. Just then I saw, on the point of an island up stream, the route I should take, and from which I could dimly see the landing on the other shore, which I reached in safety, and began to breathe easier. Half an hour later I saw a trapper standing in the door of his hut or "dug-out" in the hill side.

"Good evening, Colonel," I said, "can you tell me how far it is to Mrs. Price's?"

Taking a deliberate view of the strange appearance of a buggy in that wild locality, the noise of which had called him out, he slowly answered:

"I reckon she lives quite a bit further."

"My horse is tired out, and it is dark; I have a notion to rest up a little. Have you a family, Colonel?"

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In the crowd I noticed the trapper and his entire household, with whom I had talked the midnight hour away the previous night. Literally bundled in rags, they had to travel four miles that cold night to reach the meeting. I was told that every settler was presWhat a gracious privilege it was to preach to them; for, "Lo, I am with you," was a promise run


"Yes; won't you go in? Wife, this is a preacher ning over full that night. I was urged to leave an-a Baptist missionary."

"Good evening, Mrs. Hopkins; how old is that baby?"

other appointment. I wish I could have done so. The Bell Fourche is too treacherous for this time of the year. Besides, there is vastly more than one Baptist can do on the Black Hills side of the river. The next

“Six months,” she replied. It is the sixth in that morning I hitched up for a long drive up the Bell family; the oldest is seven years.

The trapper's dwelling is 12x14 feet-walls of the hill-side enclose three sides of it. A little fire of corn cobs burns in the corner. The roof catches the smoke; but we do not care. It keeps out the winter, and it just clears our heads, so we can stand up or lie down. "Can I stay here over night, Colonel ?"

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'If you can put up with such accommodations," he said, "you may."

"I can, if you can, Colonel."

Fourche River; for that evening I must preach at the "Bismark Crossing " for the first time. As in the meeting the night before, so here, the people had not been visited by a "preacher."

I was urged by Judge Chadwick to say I would come there some time this winter. His wife had sent him twenty miles to find me. Being "a straight Virginia Baptist," she said she was anxious to hear a Baptist minister, and have her neighbors hear one too. I arrived at her home late in the day, Judge Chadwick

"You ought to one night," he replied, evidently and his hired man immediately mounted horses and pleased with my request.

I had "struck no dinner that day, and was supperless. The family table was soon spread. The Lord was thanked, and his blessing invoked upon the family. I ate the crust off of two doughy pieces of bread and a half potato with salt, and said, "No more, I thank you." After midnight we lay down on our backs to sleep. The trapper set the alarm of his clock for the morning signal. It fired off at 5 A. M., but the dear man and his numerous family and three dogs snored on till eight. I alone answered the morning summons, went to the corn-crib, fed my horse, then hitched up and drove to Mrs. Price's. Though not expecting to see me that week, she was glad.

That morning word went on the wings of the wind, “a missionary had arrived—would preach at the cattle camp of the Bell Fourche Range, five miles below, that night." Mr. Van Eaton and his family, known as Latter-Day Saints "-Mormons-live there. This settlement takes you to the very border, beyond which is the Indian reservation, 200 miles wide, and across which you may find white settlements again. Before the hour of service the settlers began to assemble. It was the first visit from a "preacher." The Mormon and his family were active with the rest in bringing in boards and extemporizing sittings. Every inch of space was occupied that night. To my astonishment, one double-team load of young people, belonging to my choir and congregation in Butte Valley, fourteen miles distant, was there. Also one load from seven miles, consisting of an old lady of eighty years, yet hale and hearty, with her married daughters, their husbands and her grandchildren-three generations.

spread the news of my arrival. "A missionary is among us-will preach at Cassell's ranch to night." The hour came, and there was barely standing room for myself. A blind girl of seventeen years, a graduate of an Iowa institute for the blind, sat at the organ -a rare instrument here - supported by Judge Chadwick, who led the vocals that night. And so there was a good deal of modern civilization as well as religious fervor in the meeting. I promised to preach again, and I did so last Wednesday evening, with the promise from Judge Chadwick that a Sunday school shall be established forthwith. I use the week days for extending my explorations among the settlements, for as yet I have found no end of them. I use Sundays for regular appointments, concerning which I will be more specific in some future letter.


Two weeks ago last Tuesday I invited Brother Sample (Presbyterian missionary) to ride out a couple of days with me. I stopped at a log school house in the afternoon and left an appointment for that evening. I had spoken there once, last September. crowded house greeted us. Both of us did the best we could to interest the people. There was no mistaking the impressions made that night. When walking away to get my horse, a Swede, one of our hearers, followed me. I wish I could tell you what he said. You would cry, and you would laugh through your tears, as I did. "Mr. De Land, if you'll stop here and preach I will talk somedings. I can't talk, but I got to talk somedings." It was with great difficulty that I could understand his broken English, which smacked a good deal of Black Hills vernacular. I left Brother Sample to go on to our lodgings for the

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