Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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FORBES, Eli, clergyman, born in Westborough, Massachusetts, in October 1726; died in Gloucester, Massachusetts, 15 December 1804. He served against the French and Indians in 1745, and on his return from the war entered Harvard, where he was graduated in 1751. He then studied theology, and was ordained, 3 June 1752, as the first minister of the second parish in Brookfield, Massachusetts. In 1758'9 he twice acted as chaplain of a provincial regiment, and in 1762 conducted a successful mission to the Oneida Indians, among whom he established a Church and two schools. In March 1776, Mr. Forbes, having been charged by some of his congregation with being a Tory, asked and obtained an honorable dismissal, and on 5 June of that year became pastor at Gloucester, Massachusetts, where he remained until his death, also officiating frequently in vacant parishes near by. Harvard gave him the degree of D. D. in 1804. Dr. Forbes published various sermons, including one on the " Character of Washington" (1800), a memoir of Joshua Eaton, prefixed to seven of the latter's sermons, and a "Family Book," containing discourses, doctrinal, evangelical, practical, and historical (1801).
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