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A History of Printing in Colonial Maryland: 1686-1776 by Lawrence C. Wroth
Volume 435, Page 121   View pdf image (33K)
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William and Mary Goddard, Printers and Public Servants

the fall of Moro Castle at Havana,1 and a play-bill announcing a perform-
ance at the local theatre. A few sermons followed, and on August 31, 1762,
he published the prospectus of the Providence Gazette and Country Journal,
a newspaper which first appeared on October 20th of the same year. For
two and a half years, in spite of the fact that it was a well-edited sheet,
Goddard's paper struggled so unsuccessfully against the indifference of the
community that on May 11, 1765, it was forced to discontinue for lack of
support. Goddard attempted to resume its publication by an issue dated
August 24, 1765, headed "Vox Populi, Vox Dei. A Providence Gazette Ex-
traordinary ... Printed by S. and W. Goddard," but failing to receive the
eight hundred subscriptions upon which its resumption had been made con-
tingent, he allowed it once more to lapse. It was not until after the repeal
of the Stamp Act, when Goddard had been resident in New York for many
months, that on August 9, 1766, his journal was resumed and conducted
successfully for some time thereafter by "Sarah Goddard and Company."2
After hisappearance there, in August 1765, William Goddard neverreturned
to Providence to take up his trade. It was probably during the years of his
absence, and in her mother's service, that his sister, Mary Katherine God-
dard, learned the practical side of typography and journalism, a knowledge
which she put to distinguished use several years later in Baltimore.

It was during his period of discouragement in Providence3 that his friends,
Messrs. Parker and Holt, urged Goddard to leave that unpromising field
and to come to New York where his abilities would meet with greater ap-
preciation and recompense.4 Urged by the restlessness which drove him ever

1 For these and the other Rhode Island publications of Goddard, see Rhode Island Imprints, compiled by the
John Carter Brown Library. Moro Castle fell on August 14, 1762. There could not have been a great many days
intervening between the publication of Goddard's broadside announcement of the victory and that of his news-
paper prospectus on August 31, 1762,

2 Goddard's mother continued the printing and newspaper business actively in Providence until November
1768, when she sold the establishment and removed to Philadelphia, where she again invested in her son's busi-
ness. (A list of her imprints during these years in Providence is to be found in Rhode Island Imprints, before men-
tioned). The purchaser of her Providence office was John Carter, whom Goddard had sent to her assistance from
Philadelphia. He became a personage in Rhode Island. Among his descendants was John Carter Brown, the
founder of the great library of that name in Providence. Mrs. Goddard died in Philadelphia on January 5, 1770.
(Obituary in Providence Gazette for February 10, 1770). With her passing went the single restraining influence of
his early life. Her exhortations to him (see The Partnership) to refrain from wasting his strength in petty con-
troversies, her insistence that the ancient law of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth had been repealed by
the higher mandate of "Love one another," fill one with admiration for her maternal solicitude, her Christian
gentlehood and her sound wordly sense.

3 For excellent accounts of William Goddard and his activities in Providence, see Printers and Printing in
Providence, 1762-1907, [by Hugh F. Carroll]; article in Providence Journal for October 20, 1912; Arnold, S. G.,
History of the State of Rhode Island. 2 vol. Providence 1894; Kimball, G. S., Providence in Colonial Times. Boston,
1912. In the last named and in the Collections of the Rhode Island Historical Society, v. 12, no. 2, April 1919,
are excellent portraits of Goddard, showing him in young manhood and old age, respectively.

4 The Partnership: or the history of the Rise and Progress of the Pennsylvania Chronicle, &c. Wherein the Conduct
of Joseph Galloway, Esq; Speaker of the Honourable House of Representatives of the Province of Pennsylvania, Mr.

[121]


 

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A History of Printing in Colonial Maryland: 1686-1776 by Lawrence C. Wroth
Volume 435, Page 121   View pdf image (33K)
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