Rather rare unpublished letter by prominent Baptist, John Ryland [1753-1825]. He was one of the founders of the Baptist Missionary Society and for ten years its Secretary. He also pastored the prominent Broadmead Chapel in Bristol and served as the President of Bristol Baptist College, making him perhaps the most influential Baptist of his time.
The letter is likely in reference to his Memoir of Andrew Fuller, published in 1816 and comments on his ongoing editorial work likely on Fuller's Works, which were not printed until 1825.
Interestingly, he seems to have some concerns about the pace of Baptist publications and how it might be impacting the integrity of their output. He notes specifically an account of Kiaba, which we can trace no history of. Perhaps he did have information which made its printing not warrantable.
Addressed to Rev. C. Anderson of Edinburgh and postmarked Bristol, November 25, 1816 and Edinburgh, November 29, 1816
"My dear Bror.
I know not what to do. I have two copies only of this Memoir. One I must necessarily keep for myself. If I send this **** **** to the Early **** Stuart will keep it; and I can not send you another. If I **** it will cost considerable, but you must set it down to *** **** Bro. Hinton or Dyer has sent one to Glasgow and Edinb. ought to be equally well served; you must let Dr. Stuart and **** see it. I am so busy with Vo. xxx of which I have written 104pp. that I have hardly had time to examine it carefully. I am a little in doubt whether it ought to have been circulated so soon - Our Committee are so disposed to gratify the voracious desire of News, that I think the P.A. will be almost entirely anticipated. Now John Fuller* is come to Bl [Bristol] we shall be able to bring them out faster a good deal - But I almost wish every convert could go through a long quarantine before we tell of him - I have some ground of anxiety respecting Kiaba, whose story is so pleasing -
Dr. Stock**, an eminent physician, is just converted from Socinianism and has left Lewin's Mead. A MSs Serm of Dr. Chalmers***, lent by my son, thro Rhodes, was of more use than anything to him. The carnal mind is Enmity agt God. I wish Dr. Ch. wd. print it.
Respects to Mrs. A. and all friends. I am.
*Bristol publisher, John Fuller published The Efficacy of Divine Grace Explained and Defended by John Ryland in 1816.
**Dr. John Edmonds Stock [1774-1835], a prominent Bristol physician who left the Unitarians in 1816 and was baptised in Broadmead Chapel in 1817. His conversion was published in pamphlets, periodicals, etc.,
A few early repairs impacting just a few lines. A scarce early Baptist autograph letter.