Did Dr. Abell wish ill on Dr. Quinn? Perhaps. Quinn not only gained the desired services of Abell’s former servant Jennett, but was also taking his patients. Quinn wasn’t doing it on purpose; they all just wanted to come to him. There was something about Abell that put these people ill at ease, including their rector. The narrator is asking for help. He (presumably a he, given the era in which this story was written) has found a collection of papers in an old ledger he acquired. He is asking the reader if they also think there was some supernatural work at play.
Apparently, this is part of M.R. James’ style; he was the creator of the “antiquarian ghost story”. He used more realistic settings and stayed away from the Gothic. He wrote during the early twentieth century and his ghost stories are thought to be some of the best in English Literature. If this is the case, I wonder which or whether any current horror writers have read him.
You can read the story here or here.