Mr. Marchant, - I seize a few moments in the midst of other cares to drop you a line respecting the progress of our Camp Meeting Arriving here on Monday, I found the verbal reports which had from time to time reached us to the effect that great additions had been made to the internal arrangements, and great accessions to the number of tents, was indeed true. The changes last year were matters of perfect surprise, as well as admiration. Those of the present year, in some portions of the suburbs - to say nothing of the city proper - are far in advance of anything which could have expected. There are four new Society tents, and probably more than a hundred new family tents. Some of the boarding tents are on a grand scale. The new and beautiful cottages are great objects of attraction. The attempt to count, accurately, the whole number of tents would be an almost hopeless one, especially in a hot day. It is thought there are in all five to six hundred. Several families have been residing in their quiet homes here for some two or three weeks past. There was preaching on the ground last Sabbath to some 150 to 200 persons. And on Monday there was as much bustle about the grove as there used to be on the day of commencing.
On Tuesday evening there were some two or three thousand people in the Grove, and our own faithful expositor of the word of life, Rev. L. D. Davis, of Edgartown, preached the Introductory from Isaiah 85, 6. The sermon was precisely what was needed. It was listened to with interest, by the largest audience ever present on the first evening of our encampment. The preacher made us all feel more deeply than when we came, the responsibilities under which we were resting with respect to the revival of the work of God at this time, and the importance as well as duty, of earnestly engaging in prayer to God for it.
It being rainy this morning, we had preaching in several large tents. This afternoon, Rev. D. H. Ela, of Bristol, R. I., preached from the stand, on the revolutionary power of the Gospel. The number of people is greatly increasing, daily. There is about the usual number of ministers present, quite a number of them strangers. I learn there are several gentlemen of the press here, among others he who is said to be Mrs. Partington.
At our business meeting this morning, our agent, Sirson P. Coffin, Esq., read from manuscript his annual Report, in which he recommended a new organization of our business arrangements. The Report was highly acceptable and was adopted with great unanimity. It proposed the organization of an association, composed of those who now constitute these business meetings. By this plan the entire police regulations, and the general financial matters are committed to a large committee of laymen, thus giving the ministers and tent-masters more opportunity for specific christian efforts. A series of regulations, &c., was adopted, which with the agent’s Report, and the rules of encampment, will be printed in pamphlet form. More another time.