It is said that Mr. Allen [Rev. Jonathan Allen] had the soberest view of the duties belonging to the Christian ministry, but his life was not so solemn as his sermons. He was fond of fashion and festivity. He wore the short breeches and silver knee buckles and a cocked hat and powdered wig. He entered into the life of the people, the frolic and jest, and every social pastime.
The social influences were strongly against religion. Bradford was very gay and festive. The young and old joined in frequent festivity. John Hasseltine built his house and finished it with a dance hall. The second story of that house, in the rear part, which is still standing, was devoted to amusement and dancing. It was not an uncommon thing for Parson Allen to call for his deacon to go and spend the evening at the dance hall.
“A revival of religion was a thing never heard of.” But in the midst of this frivolity the spirit of God came to the heart of the minister and people with great power. There were faithful men, and women especially, who were praying for God’s special blessing. The prayer was answered. . . .
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