On the Chocolate Trail

The Judge’s Sweet Tooth

In the pioneering days of chocolate in our country, pastoral ministrations using chocolate took several forms. Judge Samuel Sewall,

Minister Samuel Sewall

Judge Samuel Sewall

(March 28, 1652 – January 1, 1730) a Massachusetts judge involved in the Salem witch trials, (he later apologized) recorded in his diary that his pastoral ministration bundled visits and sermons with gifts of chocolate:

  • “Monday, October 26, 1702 … Visited languishing Mr. Sam Whiting, I gave him 2 Balls of Chockalett and a pound of Figgs, which very kindly accepted.”
  • In 1707 on “March 31 Visited Mr Gibbs, presented him with a pound of Chockalett and 3 of Cousin Moodey’s sermons.”
  • Also in that year…“…I gave Mr. Stoddard for Madam Stoddard two half pounds of Chockolat, instead of Commencement Cake and a Thesis.”

Sewall himself drank chocolate on occasion, according to the diary:

  • I go to Mr. Belcher’s where I drink warm chockelat and no beer; find myself much refresh’d by it after great Sweating to day, and yesterday.…”
  • “… October 20, 1697 I wait on the Lieut Governour at Dorchester and there meet with Mr Torry, breakfast together on venison and chockalatte…”

At least that part of his informal ministry was sweet!

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On the Chocolate Trail

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