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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
Rev. Dr. Chalmers and Mr. Thomas Smith of Glasgow

IT is interesting to note that one of the earliest Glasgow experiences of this eminent man, whose capacious mind grappled with some’ of the greatest religious, moral, social, and, scientific problems of the age, was a singular attachment to a youthful citizen, who was one of the trophies of Dr. Chalmers’ ministry in Glasgow. This was Mr. Thomas Smith, the son of the father of the Glasgow bookselling trade. This young man was qualifying himself for the profession of a writer or attorney, and the friendship between him and Dr. Chalmers was of the most affectionate nature. Scarcely a day passed without their seeing each other, and, in addition to that, scarcely a day passed without one or more letters being sent by the pastor to his young convert.

A trysting-place was appointed on the banks of the Monkland Canal, where each day at a set hour they met, and here " the general conversation of ordinary friendship soon flowed in that new channel into which it was directed by a heart yearning for the spiritual and eternal welfare of its object." Mr. Smith was unfortunately in delicate health, and died within a year of Dr. Chalmers’ induction; and doubtless the premonitions of this event would give an earnestness and a pathos of a peculiar and touching description to the friendship between him and his pastor. But we are so apt to connect the name of Dr. Chalmers with large schemes of public and national interest that it is refreshing to get such a glimpse into the heart of the man, and to learn that a deep and undying love to the human soul was the root principle out of which all his public zeal and enterprise grew.

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