William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan
Finding aid for
Timothy M. Cooley Journal, 1803; 1876
Duane Norman Diedrich CollectionFinding aid created by
Richard C. Bates and Meg Hixon, January 2012
Timothy M. Cooley journal
Cooley, Timothy Mather, 1772-1859
This "Missionary Journal" chronicles Congregational minister Timothy Mather Cooley's missionary trip to the New York counties of Oneida, Onondaga, and Chenango between June and October 1803. During his travels, he preached 108 sermons, visited 27 schools, baptized 53 people (of whom 50 were children), and helped establish a church in Verona, New York.
The material is in English
William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu
Access and Use
The collection is open for research.
Copyright status is unknown
Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.
Timothy M. Cooley Journal, Duane Norman Diedrich Collection, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan
Reverend Timothy Mather Cooley was born in Granville, Massachusetts, in 1772, and was educated privately between the ages of 12 and 15. He began coursework at Yale College in 1788, and graduated in 1792; following his graduation, he spent another year studying religion, and then preached in Salisbury, Connecticut, and Granville, Massachusetts. He was ordained as a Congregational minister in 1796, and led the Granville congregation for most of the rest of his life. He spent several months of the summer and fall of 1803 on a missionary trip to northern New York, and helped the Reverend Peter Fish establish a church at Verona, New York. Cooley married Content Chapman on May 6, 1796. He died in 1859.
Collection Scope and Content Note
This "Missionary Journal" chronicles Congregational minister Timothy Mather Cooley's missionary trip to the New York counties of Oneida, Onondaga, and Chenango between June and October 1803. During his travels, he preached 108 sermons, visited 27 schools, baptized 53 people (of whom 50 were children), and helped establish a church in Verona, New York. He left his home on June 5, 1803, and headed for Northampton, where he received his formal commission from the Hampshire Missionary Society. From there, he went to Utica, and spent the next several months traveling around rural New York. Throughout his travels, he kept a log of his activities in various settlements, which often included delivering sermons, distributing literature, and talking to local residents; he frequently composed footnotes giving a general outline of each town. These notes usually recorded the year of the town's settlement, the number of families, churches, and schools, and the number of people who belonged to other Christian denominations, most frequently Baptists and Methodists. Though generally optimistic about his mission, he often commented that local residents were "poor, stupid, and ignorant" or, in one case, "stupid and vicious" (June 24). On July 9, he copied two drawings of coins resembling those Judas received for betraying Christ, and on July 23 described a visit to Baron von Steuben's gravesite. He also occasionally met with Native Americans, and described Oneida buildings (August 2) and a tour of an old burial ground (August 25). Often accompanied by the Reverend Peter Fish, he helped establish a church in Verona, New York, in August. He returned home on October 5. The back of the volume contains Cooley’s summary of his trip, a chart of distance traveled, sermons preached, schools visited, people baptized, donations received, and books distributed, and a note by C. Green, MD, a later owner of the journal, providing evidence for Cooley's authorship (December 1876).
- Map of Black River Settlements (June 24) (Housed in the Map Division)
- Map of Chenango County (August 14)
- Map of Onondaga County (October 5)
- Chenango County (N.Y.)--Description and travel.
- Hampshire Missionary Society.
- Indians of North America--New York (State)
- Missions--New York (State)
- Oneida County (N.Y.)--Description and travel.
- Onondaga County (N.Y.)--Description and travel.
- Journals (accounts)
- Manuscript maps.
Additional Descriptive Data
One map is housed in the Map Division:
Cooley, Timothy Mather. A Map of Black River Settlements. 1803.
- Cooley, Timothy Mather, and Bezaleel Howard. A Sermon, Delivered in Springfield, Before the Bible Society: And the Foreign Mission Society, in the County of Hampden, at their Annual Meeting, August 27, 1817. Springfield: Printed by Thomas Dickman, 1817.
- Cooley, Timothy Mather. Sketches of the Church and Pastors in Hampden County, Mass.: And also, an Address Delivered to the Pastors. Westfield: S. W. Edson, 1854.
- Cooley, Timothy Mather. Sketches of the Life And Character of the Rev. Lemuel Haynes, A.M., for Many Years Pastor of a Church in Rutland, Vt., and Late in Granville, New-York. New York: Harper & brothers, 1837.
Chapman, Frederick William. The Chapman Family: or the Descendants of Robert Chapman, one of the First Settlers of Say-Brook, Conn., with Genealogical Notes... Hartford: Case, Tiffany, and Company, 1854.