E. Barker diaries  1854-1880
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The three E. Barker diaries record the Congregational missionary's work in New Brunswick and Ontario, Canada, in the mid- to late-19th century. The first volume, containing diary entries and logs of family visits, is entitled "Sketches of Pastoral Work &c.," and covers the years 1853-1877. Much of the first part of the book consists of a diary kept by Barker between October 20, 1854, and April 21, 1855, while employed by the Home Missionary Society in Simonds, New Brunswick. He preached in local churches, talked about theology with residents, and attempted to win converts to his denomination. Much of the journal recounts theological debates with local residents, with baptism a frequent topic of discussion. Barker also recorded his personal struggles and frustration with his lack of success. The second portion of this volume consists of "Visiting Accounts" around Eramosa, Ontario, showing the dates on which he visited specific families, and an accompanying "Visiting Journal" with related remarks; both cover the time period of July 10, 1855-April 2, 1856; March 23, 1857; and April 18, 1858-December 26, 1859. The diary dated 1859-1866 is in shorthand. The final sections of the volume are devoted to a visiting log for Fergus, Ontario, 1874-1876, and a list of families to visit, with remarks in shorthand. Two additional diaries written in shorthand cover Barker's activities from 1861-1869 and 1870-1880, respectively.

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