This material originally was published in the Oct. 25, 2002 Merrimack River Current. It is reprinted here with permission of Community Newspaper Company.
Peer into Dexter's chest

By Current Staff

Friday, October 25, 2002

Lord Timothy Dexter's chest, mysteriously resurfaced before Awakening the Spirit, The following is a list of chest contents provided by the Ken and Dominique Dear's Web site (link within).

  • A Clock - Dexter was an avid collector of clocks, obsessed with timekeeping. As a biographer once remarked, Dexter "out-Einsteined Einstein" on the theory of time and space.

  • A Bunny - Its movements sometimes used for divination, a bunny or hare is often associated with transformation, the receiving of hidden teachings and intuitive messages. Timothy Dexter followed the "Ould Wayes" and the Celtic Lunar Calendar, so perchance he himself saw the bunny in the Full Moon. The Knowing Ones certainly do -- do you see the bunny?

  • A copy of Dexter's anthology, "A Pickle for the Knowing Ones," first published May 1802 - Reprinted by the Historical Society of Old Newbury.

  • Scraps of Script seemingly drafted by his Lordship himself - Messages left behind and submissions from the Otherworld. Instructions for invocations from his Book of Shadows and "thorts & axsions" to provoke new beginnings.

  • Gloves - To recall his former apprenticeship and trade as a leather dresser. Dexter's shop was at the "Sign of the Glove" opposite Somerby's Landing on the corner of Green and Merrimac streets, now the landscaped corner of the Green Street parking lot planted with crabapple trees.

  • Dragonfly Impression - Dexter believed that he would reincarnate by transforming to human form through a dragonfly darning needle.

  • Dragonfly Incense Utensil -- A most useful tool to measure and mix incense and such during invocations.

  • Dexter Spoon - To stir and properly measure portions for potions and concoctions.

  • Obsidian Stone - All Obsidian stones share the characteristic of making the user aware of their flaws and how to address them, often in very visual terms. Excellent for grounding and for protecting from physical or emotional harm, it provides shielding from negativity in the environment.

    While as a grounding stone Obsidian helps to stabilize, as a scrying tool, it can offer an accurate reflection of the changes that need to be made. Its answers can be quick and somewhat pointed. It will help to provide a clear course of action and let you know what challenges are the most necessary to face; not always the easiest or most pleasant lessons.

    The Rainbow Obsidian is like a rainbow amidst the darkest storm. Rainbow Obsidian brings light into the darkness of self. It brings a sense of joy, energy and belief in the possible. Employing this stone in pyramid form should prove the Waterside people's optimal hope for transforming the very best in Lord Dexter and in ourselves as well, preparing us to commence New Beginnings.

  • Bell - A favorite donation of Timothy Dexter. One such bell is still used today at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church. Listen for its clear tones. Cast in 1796 by the Warner Co. of London, England, the inscription on the bell reads, "Given by Timothy Dexter, Esq. at the cost off $333.33 to the Second Presbyterian Society of the city of Newbury Port," and was donated to the Harris Street Church while Dexter lived at the Tracy House.

  • Tassels - To trim and dangle on his Lordship's preposterous "Bonney partey" hat!

  • Frog Bank -- Dexter often made reference to the frog, symbolically comparing humankind to toads. It seems the frog was also held up as a kind of sign or omen, as mentioned on page 36 of "A Pickle for the Knowing Ones."

    To many cultures, the frog is a symbol of magic which can teach you to leap swiftly from one level of consciousness to another, from this world to the Otherworld. The frog can also help you find the courage to accept new ideas, nurture yourself and find connections between ideas. The representation of the bank is obvious. Dexter was a wise and canny investor with a Midas touch.

  • A Pouch of Pennies - Two hundred in count, plus one Canadian penny. Using the conversion of the Consumer Price Index, this would be equivalent to about $28 in the period Dexter lived at the Tracy House. Just how many coins will Charon charge Dexter to cross the River Styx from the Otherworld?

  • "Fugios" - Designed by Benjamin Franklin, these were the very first coin of the United States of America. So-called because on one side of the copper coin the word "Fugio" is inscribed beside a sundial. Fugio in Latin means, "I Fly, so with the sundial it implies, "Time Flies," below which is inscribed one of Franklin's favorite mottos: "Mind Your Business".

    On the other side of the coin are 13 entwined rings, one for each of the 13 states. In the center of the coin, the words, "United States" surround the slogan, "We are one".

    Franklin's Fugio Cents were minted in 1787 and immediately entered circulation. By the time Washington was inaugurated as the nation's first president in 1789, Fugio Cents were already in wide circulation, prompting the decimal monetary system to be later adopted by Congress.

    When President Washington came to Newburyport, staying overnight at the Tracy House Oct. 30, 1789, and breaking fast at the Dalton House the following morning, Fugios were jingling in the coffers of shops and the pockets of the Waterside people.

    Where are these Fugios now? While collectors place high value on these coins, the Fugio Cent's combined message continues to enrich us all: "Time Flies So Mind Your Business and We Are One." Peace and prosperity can be found in the balance.