Brother Joshua makes his move …
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John Hutchinson relates this as taking place around 1829, when Joshua was eighteen:
Joshua had a very useful voice, on the middle register, and a good knowledge of music, and as he had sung in the choir from early youth, it was not strange that at the age of eighteen he was invited to take the lead. Disposing of the temporary incumbent of the office of chorister by a frank letter telling him that as there could be but one such functionary, it would be necessary for him to retire, Joshua assumed the position, and held it fourteen years. As we younger members of the family came along we were encouraged to join him, until at one time there were ten of us in the chorus. It will thus be seen that at the very beginning of our musical experience, Joshua had much to do with our development.
We have seen fit here to depict the exchange as verbal, instead of epistolary, in nature.