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Athaliah Voorhies spiritual journal


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

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Overview and metadata sections

Athaliah Cubberly was born on August 7, 1799, the daughter of David and Elizabeth Mount Cubberly (Cubberley) of Hamilton Square, New Jersey. In 1820, she married Major Voorhies, a tanner.

Major Voorhies (Voorhees) was an active member of the Hamilton Square community and served as a town constable in 1845 and as member of the Township Committee in 1850 and 1855. Athaliah Voorhies had a strong interest in religious matters and was heavily involved in the First Presbyterian Church of Hamilton Square in addition to being a "member for life" of the American Bible Society. Athaliah died on November 24, 1893, and was interred in the graveyard of her Hamilton Square church.

"Women's History Sources: A Guide," Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. (accessed February 10, 2014)."Athaliah Cubberley Voorhees," Find A Grave. (accessed February 10, 2014)."Hamilton Township," Mercer County History. (accessed February 10, 2014).Fiftieth Annual Report of the American Bible Society (New York: American Bible Society, 1866), 163.

This spiritual diary and journal was kept by Athaliah Voorhies of Hamilton Square, New Jersey, from 1838-1844. Entries primarily are of a religious nature and feature meditations, biblical text, and comments on sermons delivered by a number of preachers. Brief entries also note community births, deaths, marriages, accidents, and events regarding family members.

Many of the entries made by Voorhies in her "journal of the mind" relate to sermons given by several preachers during Sunday church services. The predominant preacher from 1838-1840 was Henry Purkins, pastor of the united churches of Allentown and Hamilton Square, New Jersey. From 1840-1844 the majority of sermons were delivered by George Ely, "ordained pastor over Nottingham and Dutch Neck Church." Other preachers mentioned by Voorhies include Misters Stiles, Miclain, Henry, Deerewell, and Parker. The entries also are a set of religious meditations, often reflecting events and hardships faced by Voorhies and those around her. Spiritual teachings pervade Voorhies' entries and she frequently used religious language when relating events, especially deaths in the community, where she noted that individuals had "been lain in the cold and silent tomb there to remain until the morn of the resurrection."

Periodic entries were made regarding events such as visits from members of the Cubberly family, social calls with friends, society events (such as meetings of the Missionary Sewing Society), and other happenings in the community such as marriages, births, and extraordinary weather. Voorhies commented on her own health, both physical and emotional, as well as the status of her church, at one point listing the names of "sixty three persons added to the church."

University of Delaware. Library.

Self works : diaries, scrapbooks, and other autobiographical efforts : catalog of an exhibition, August 19, 1997-December 18, 1997 : guide to selected sources. Newark, Del. : Special Collections, Hugh M. Morris Library, University of Delaware Library, 1997.

  1. Item 0116: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0097


Processed and encoded by E. Evan Echols, February 2014.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2014 February 10
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

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Collection Inventory

Athaliah Voorhies spiritual journal, 1838-1844.
Item 0116
Physical Description

1 volume

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