In 1769, the Deacon agreed not to handle any goods at his auctions which were imported in contravention of the Non-Importation Agreements.
In 1771, Samuel Southwick, a printer and publisher in Newport, R.I. decided to reissue a reprint of the 1716 edition of the Deacon's grandfather's history of King Philip's War, titled "The History of King Philip's War", and enlisted the services of Dr. Ezra Stiles, then pastor of the Second Congregational Church in Newport, R.I.. (Dr Stiles has been mentioned a number of times in this blog and I invite the readers to read the posts concerning him.) Dr Stiles enlisted the then 67 year old Deacon, who some may recall lived with his grandfather for a number of years as a young boy, to contribute to a Life of Col Church that was to be appended to the the new edition. We do not know precisely what information Deacon Church provided to Dr. Stiles concerning the life of his grandfather, but it appears from the Stiles papers that Stiles just used whatever he received without specific attribution. The Deacon also furnished a 30 line poem, an "Ode Heroica, " in Latin, to be included in the book as a tribute to Col Church; it was duly incorporated. I will spare the modern reader a translation of the poem, but will state that the author took as his inspiration the Roman biographer, Cornelius Nepos, and the work is filled with classical Roman and biblical references. The Deacon's other inspiration appears to have been Publius Ovidus Naso (Ovid).
|A December 1768 issue of the Boston Chronicle advertising items for sale at "public vendue."|
Thus, at the eve of the outbreak of the Revolution in April 1775, seventy year old Benjamin Church, Sr had been resident in Boston for some thirty-three years, had risen to be one of its most respected citizens, and had become prosperous enough to be considered a gentleman. He had eight children and two of his sons were active Patriots. One was of such prominence in the Whig movement that there were few who stood higher. Benjamin Sr was a scholar and respected Deacon living in a substantial brick home with an extensive library with books in English, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and French. The revolution, however, would bring his world crashing down upon him.