Below is a transcription of an article I found in the 1898 edition of the Marion Daily Star.I thought it was important enough to transcribe and post for the many resident Marion Cty Surnames it contained..
Please note:Also contained within the article are copies of the Original Diary of Amos Barrett referencing his recollections of the Battles of Concord and Lexington.
Also included is a very nice, could be a woodcut, picture of Joshua VanFleet.
Please excuse any typos, even though I did proof read my transcription I am unfamiliar with many of the Surnames and typed them as they appeared in the Article.
Revolutionary Heroes who sleep in Marion County Cemeteries
"The Marion Daily Star"; Apr 9, 1898; Pg 13?-14? (Pg #s are a bit hard to read)
At present, all verbal ways lead to war.No matter where a conversation may have it s source, it's but a question of moments till it veers about to the all-absorbing topic of the hour--war.
And so it was something over six score years ago.
But how widely different some of the conditions.Again how similar some of them appear.Then we had not a national existence.Technically and practically we were rebels.Today we have the strength to cope with any nation on the sphere.Then we were about to array ourselves against the mother country, as powerful then, comparatively, as now.France was then our alley; England our foe.Today we are abut to step into the niche which, in the last century, France held.We are about to array ourselves with rebels against the "home" government.The latter will have the moral assistance of our old friend, France, while behind us will stand our old foe, England.France was about to fight for our liberty then.We are about to fight for Cuban liberty now.Then as now, our people were divided into tow classes.The Whigs and the Tories of an hundred years ago are represented to day by the public spirited masses, which would avenge the treacherously murdered victims of the Maine disaster, who would avenge the foully assassinated Macco, who would bring, by war, peace to a liberty loving, downtrodden people; and the money power, which wants no war, believing that the loss of countless human lives cannot balance against, golden ducats, the money power, which would allow suffering and death to go unavenged lest securities may be impaired.
And securities would be impaired and almost countless lives given up.There is no mistaking that.The dangers of the war, fought and won by our revolutionary forefathers, would be nothing as compared to the dangers of the struggle into which we may at any moment enter.
And what shall be the reward to those who go into this struggle?To those who come out maimed and broken down, a pension at some late day, perhaps:To those who come out unscathed, possibly a life of peace and usefulness.But what of those who are among the unnumbered dead?Will there be given to them undying fame--or forgetfulness?For a time, perchance, the glory of their deeds would live in the minds of the populace, but a generation comes and goes, a second generation fills the stage, and the heroes of the struggle are forgotten.
We have been so prone to forget.
A perusal of three popular histories of our country reveals of all the hosts, who fought for liberty from Lexington to Yorktown, scarce two dozen names--Washington, LaFayette, DeKalb, Stark, Gates, Paul Jones, Ward, Thomas, Montgomery, Lee, St. Clair, Lincoln, D’Estaing, Sullivan, Hopkins, Heath, Green, Rochambeau, Marion, Armstrong, Revere and Arnold, the Traitor. Of the great majority we find no record.The deeds of valor and acts of heroism of the great multitude of that time are lost to us.Even the names fo the multitude have passed beyond recall, save where they have treasured up in some descendant's heart or on some moldy tombstone appear.
Would similar forgetfulness obtain in the event another war?It is possible, but hardly probable.They, who survive of the late war, have long since begun to place on record not only their own names and deeds, but also the names and deeds of their fellow actors who failed to returnfrom the war, or returning, have passed into silent dust since.And an effort is even now being made--it has been carried on to some purpose for several years--to steal into the mists of the past and learn of those who fought for our national liberty.Two or three societies have been formed for that purpose, and one o f them "The Ohio Society Sons of the American Revolution", through its local member, Col. Henry True, is even now at work making a record of the revolutionary soldiers buried in Marion county Soil, and of the descendants of revolutionary soldiers living here.
The work is of no less interest then surprise.A year ago, when Colonel True was asked how many revolutionary soldiers were buried in Marion county soil, his answer was "possibly one or two."To the question--"How many descendants?"--he answered "Probably forty or fifty."
What are the facts?Colonel True has already gleaned that there are at lest fourteen revolutionaryburied here and possibly more, while the name of their descendants "is legion."
On the list we find the names of Frazer Gray, Joseph Gillet, James Swinnerton, Jehiah Wilcox, Ebenezer Ballantine, Joshua VanFleet, John Patterson, "Buckeye" Davis, National Wyatt, John Irey, Benjamin Tikel, Abel Spaulding, Andrew Hyde, Jr., and Israel Clark.
The remains of Frazer Gray rest in Union graveyard at Scott Town.He enlisted in the Delaware "Continentals" and served until conclusion of the war.He was present at the hanging of the gallant Andre and his related of the latter--"Andre was well and neatly dressed, was polite and courteous in his manners, never betraying the least emotion, and when on the scaffold he made a beautiful speech, full of loyalty to his king, and denying any intention of acting as a spy.He claimed that , under the circumstances, he ought not to be hung, but if death was inevitable, a soldier's death, by shooting, should be ordered.As his last appeal met with no response, he turned to the officer near him, and with smiles on his face signified his readiness to die in any way for his king and county."
Mr. Gray knew General Washington and had conversed with him on several occasions.Mr. Gray died in 1849 at the age of eighty-nine.On his tombstone is inscribed:
"A Soldier of the Revolution
from the State of Delaware
Died Oct 8th, 1849
Aged 89 years
After a life of integrity and honor
he quietly passes from earth,
without a murmur or struggle,
content alike with life and death."
John Patterson and "Buckeye" Davis have left little behind them by which to be remembered.Their remains rest in the Mount graveyard near Prospect and several relatives of the latter named live at Green Camp.
Joseph Gillet, was in the cavalry joining from Hartford, Conn., at that time known as the "light Horse."Mrs. Gillet was born in 1754 and died in 1836.His remains now rest in the Wyatt Cemetery near Waldo.H.G. Gillet, a grandson, yet has in his possession sixteen silver buttons worn by this grandfather furing the war.The buttons bear his grandfather's initials.They were made by a British soldier who surrendered at the surrender of Burgoyne.
James Swinnerton, an ancestor of "Genial Jim", who is yet well remembered here, was born in Salem, Suffolk county, Mass., August 13, 1757.He enlisted from his native state at the age of eighteen, but the date of his discharge is not known.Mr. Swinnerton died in this county December 6, 1824, and was buried in Grand Prairie township.
In the cemetery at Norton, just across the line in Delaware county is an old tombstone which reads:
a Revolutionary Soldier,
Sept. 17, 1848.
Aged 87 years 6 months."
Mr. Wilcox was a colonel in the revolutionary war, was subsequently brevetted brigadier general and was a member of Washington's staff.He had charge of General Washington's bodyguard on the march on Trenton.From him M.V. Payne secures a right to be classed a descendant of the fighters of the last century, Mr. Payne being a great grandson of the general.
Ebenezer Ballantine was another of the heroes of revolutionary times.His remains formerly rested in the old cemetery, but were removed to the new city of the dead beyond Gospel Hill.Mr. Ballantine was the father of "Deacon" John Ballantine and a grandfather of Mr. Ed. Conley who has a surveyor's compass used by her grandsire in the service.
Of Joshua VanFleet the "History of Marion County" says:"Joshua Van Fleet, grandfather of H.T. Van Fleet, emigrated, from Holland to America with his brother, John Van Fleet, when twelve years of age.He served during the last three years of the Revolutionary ware, enlisting when fourteen years of age.He was subsequently a member of the New York legislature, and was a member or the committee that drafted and reported the bill which was made a law abolishing slavery in the state of New York. He also served on the bench of the county court for a short term.
Mr. VanFleet died January 8, 1848, at the age of eighty-four years.His remains rest in the cemetery north of Big Island.
A musket carried by Joshua VanFleet during the earlier months of his enlistment, is yet in possession of his grandson, John M. VanFleet, of Kenton, while a likeness, from which the cut, published herewith, is in the possession of his great-grandson of this city.
Take a look at the sectional map of Marion county and you will find there one many times the name of Nathaniel Wyatt.There is every indication that, if he did not own all the southern part of Marion county, he at least held a big slice of it.
Mr. Wyatt served in the revolutionary war, and was in some of the most stubbornly contested battles.He entered the service at fifteen and served five years.He died on his homestead near Waldo August 18, 1824, and was buried in the old graveyard which bears his name, near Waldo.This graveyard, like old Fort Morrow and Wyatt’s tavern, was on his farm.It is the oldest burying ground in this county.
John Irey was born in the colony of Virginia, January 28, 1757.He served in the division of Washington’s army which was commanded by the Marquis De Lafayette, and was present at the surrender of Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown.
After the close of the revolutionary war he lived near Leesburg, London county, Virginia.He had one daughter Mary, who married Zephaniah Davis and was the mother of Dr. Bushrod Washington Davis, who so long practiced medicine here and made for himself a host of friend who yet hold him in dear memory.It is thus that Hon. W.Z. Davis and his daughters, and his sister, Miss Davis, trace their revolutionary ancestry.
Mr. Irey had four sons, Samuel, Enos, John and Stephen.In 1830 his sons and son-in-law came t Marion county and Mr. Irey came with them.He took up his home with this son-in-law, in Claridon township and there lived for the greater part of the time up to the date of his death which occurred December 20, 1937, at which time he was almost eighty-one years of age.
The descendants of Samuel Irey are mostly in Illinois, but his son Hannibal Irey lived and died here, and his grandsons, sons of Hannibal, Harrison H. Irey and James S. Irey, with their children reside in this city.His daughter, Susan, was the first wife of Hon. John R. Garberson, lately deceased, and their children are well known in this city and county.
Of the children of Enos Irey, several served in the Union army during the rebellion, and of the survivors of them Israel Irey resides in Green Camp township and John F. Irey and Thomas Irey and their families live in this city.
None of the children of John Irey Jr., are living, but Ira Irey, formerly of this city, J.H. Irey and Mrs. B.G. Young are his grandchildren.
Dr. Davis remembered many of the revolutionary heroes, and, in his lifetime, used to tell of the second visit of Lafayette to this country in 1824.Lafayette’s visit occupied some eleven months of travel through the United States, during which time he visited Leesburg.Dr. Davis, then a boy of twelve years of age, sent with his grandfather, John Irey, when the latter went to meet his old commander.It was a gala day in Leesburg and the president, John Quincy Adams, and the ex-president, James Monroe, were both present.
While the old soldier talked with Lafayette, the famous soldier and patriot stood with this hand resting on the head of the young lad.Dr. Davis in relating this incident was accustomed t speak in detail of the clothing, manner and personal appearance of Lafayette on this occasion, and, among other things of his walking with a slight lameness, which, the boy was told, was the result of a wound received at the battle of Brandywine.
Andrew Hyde, Jr., grandfather of W.S. Aye, served in the revolution from Lenox, Berkshire county, Mass.He was born in 1757 and died in this county in 1845.He was buried in Clariden cemetery.
The List also includes the names of Jacob Barks, whose remains rest on the farm of G.F. Barks, this county.J. Riggins who is inscribed as a revolutionary soldier in the memorial chapel and two or three in the old graveyard at Caledonia, but sufficient data have not been secured as yet to warrant the positive statement that they were revolutionary soldiers.
It may easily be seen the great number who can claim revolutionary ancestry from the revolutionary soldiers buried in this vicinity, but that is but the beginning.There must be hundreds in the county who have good claims to the blood of revolutionary fighters.
Among them may be noted S.E. DeWolfe, his children and his grandchildren, Marshall DeWolfe and Horace Burns.Mr. DeWolfe is a great-grandson of Joshua Griffin, on his maternal side, who served seven years with the New Jersey troops, a great grandson of Captain Smin Adams, who served in the continental army from near North Adams, Mass., and a great-grandson of Samuel DeWolfe, who served from Connecticut.
James H. Reed, James P. Reed, Mrs. Sarah H. Johnson, Katherine E. Fisher, Kathryn Fisher and H.J. Fisher claim ancestry from Captain Reed of Middleboro, Mass., and from Amassa Smith of Deerfield, Mass., who, it is stated, shot away the family pewter at the battle of Bennington.James P. Reed is also a great-great-grandson of Captain Joseph Brace and has continental money paid to Captain Brace for services.
Frank Sifritt of LaRue is a great-great-grandson of Major Sifritt of the continental army.
Mrs. E.C. Robinson is a great-Granddaugher of an ancestor by the name of Covert, who fought under Count D’Estaing.Her father, the late D’Estaing Covert, was named after him.
Isaac Merchant and Leonard Thomas, Great grandfathers of Isaac Merchant, C.B. Merchant and Jay T. Merchant, served in the revolutionary war, Leonard Thomas serving entirely through the war and being present at the surrender of Lord Cornwallis.Thus their families claim ancestry from the revolution.
George B. Christian and his children of the late Dr. J.M. Christian claim from a colonel in the Virginia troops.
G.T. Harding and his children claim revolutionary ancestry from Mr. Harding’s great-grandfather, who served with the New York troops, and seven of the family were killed in the Wyoming massacre.
From Israel Clark, Robert T. Clark, Mrs. Harvey Clark, Mrs. Nancy E. Jump, Victor Jump, Frank Jump, Fred Jump, Marcellus Jump, Hattie Jump, and Imo Jump, Harry Clark, James Clark, Minerva Foos, Carrol Foos, Callie Hinaman, Robert Hinaman, Crace Burt, Tillie Burt and Charles R. Clark derive their revolutionary strain.
W.S. Aye, M.C. Aye, Melville Aye, Dale Aye and Gertrude Aye are grandchildren of Andrew Hyde, who served with the Connecticut troops.
The Thompson of west Center street claim from Israel Aile who was killed at Bunker Hill.
The father of Daniel Stockman of Waldo served at Valley Forge.In the life time of the elder Stockman he told of the awful privation and want which the colonial troops endured and related that he awoke, one morning, and found his hair frozen to the ground.
George D. Copeland and Arthur P. Copeland are great-great-grandsons of George William Wilson, who served from Winchester, Virginia.Thus their children and the children of their deceased brother, Harry B., Harry Copeland and the Gladys Copeland have their claim.
M. B. Chase and his children claim from Mr. Chase’s great-grandfather, Captain Graves who served from Windham, Connecticut.
In addition to all these, the “History of Marion County” notes that Peter LaTourette, the Linns, the Showens, Dr. R.L. Sweney and his descendants, Allen Day, the Harrimans, Charles, Morton, Curtis, James B. and Edward, the Messengers of this city, the Lees of near Caledonia, the Gillespies, the Terrys, the Millers, the Boyds, the Goodings, the Myers of Pleasant township, the Redds, the Taveners, the VanHoutens, the Emerys of Richland township, the Millers of Scott township, the Rices and the Rosencranses of Scott township, the Cyphers of Tully township, the Sharrocks, the Drakes, the Concklins, the Denmans of Waldo, the Francises of Waldo, the Jones of Waldo, the Millers of Waldo and the Crattys of Prospect, claim revolutionary ancestors.
Mrs. E..P. Fisher and her sons, W.B. Fisher, James B. Fisher and Chas. C. Fisher and their children trace back to revolutionary ancestry.
O.W. Weeks, D.O. Weeks, the Gillets of Waldo, the Hords, the Boyds, the Thompsons, the Nelsons, M.J.W. and D.C., the Beals, the Landons, J.C. Walter, E.H. Raffensperger, Mrs. Mary Greg, Ben Bigford, the Meizs, the Freelands, the Foyes, Mrs. Jennie Davis and Mrs. H.H. Berry are proud of their revolutionary blood.
It may be worth of note that Miss Eleanor Freeland is a “Daughter ofthe American Revolution,” although the fact has before appeared in print.
Colonel Harry True, the only local member of the “Ohio Society , Sons of the Revolution,” derives his revolutionary blood through three channels.His is the great-grandson of Captain Reed of Middleboro, Mass., who served in Rhode Island and was called Captain “Smooth” because of his kind manners, a great grandson of Amassa Smith of Deerfield, Mass who has already been mentioned as having shot away the family pewter at the battle of Bennington and a great-grandson of Amos Barrett, who was a minute man at the battle of Concord and served through the war, having fought at Bunker Hill and been present at Burgoyne’s surrender.
For his continental army service Mr. Barrett was granted a mountain at Union, Maine, to which he removed after the war.It is still known as Barrett’s Hill.
“Tis thus that Col. True and his son, Henry Ayer True, trace back to revolutionary ancestry.
Colonel True has in his possession an account of the battle of Concord and Lexinton, written by Mr. Barrett, April 19, 1825, the fiftieth anniversary of the battle.It is yellow and spotted with age and the edges are somewhat worn, despite the careful handling it has received.
Through the courtesy of Col. True the Star prints facsimiles of the four pages of the description of the skirmish, which read as follows:
"This 19th of April 1825 Brings fresh to my mind the Battle of Concord & Lexinton.When I come to Look Back I find it is 50 year Since.Though So Long Can Remember the hull of it I thnk Better thin I can Remember things 5 years ago.As I was in the hull of it from Concord to Bunker hill I take my penn to writeSomething about it as I think I no as much about it as any person now Living as I Don’t’ think there is but a few that was their that is now a Live.The 19 of Aprail 1775 the British Landed bout 1000 of their Best troops from Boston in boats about Charlestown River above C Bridge in the night Very privately and I beleave they did not take the road till they got almost to old Cambridge.They captd the old rode and every man they saw they took and kept so that they should not alarm the people but sum how they got word at Lexinton that they was a Coming, their was a number of men Collected on the common when the British to thair---and the B ordered them to disparst but thy Did not so quick as the wished to have them and the B. fired on them and kild 7 or 8 dead and wounded a number more.Our men Did not fire on them thought I heard after they had got by that 2 or 3 our men fird and wounded sum of them.We at Concord heard that they was a coming.The the Bell Rang at 3o’clock for Alaroum.As I was then a minnit man I was Soon in town and found my Capt and the rest of my Company at the post.It wasn’t Long before their was other minnit companeys.One Company I believe of minnit men was raised in most every town to Stand at a minnit’s warning before Sunrise.Their was I beleave 150 of us and more of all that was their.We thought we wood go and meet the British.We marched Down towards >. About a minkle or mile half and we see them coming, we halted and stayd till they got within about 100 rodds then we was ordered to face about and march.Before them with our Drums and fifes agoing and also the bass—had grand musick—we march into town and then over the north Bridge a Little more then half a mile and then on a hill not far from the Bridge whar we could See and hear what was agoing on.What the B came out after was to Destroy our stores that we had Laid up for our army.Thar was in the town House a number of entrenchin toos which they Carried out and Burnt them.At Last they Said ti was Best to Burn them in the house and Sat fire to them in the house, but our people begd of them not the Burn the house and put it out.It warn’t long before it was set fire again but finally it wasn’t Burt.Their was about 100 Barrels of flower in Mr. Hubbard’s mill house.They fetched that out and nocked them to peeces and piched some in the mill pond which was saved after they was goon."
“when we was on the hill by the Bridge their was about 80 or 90 B came to the Bridge and their made a halt. “after a while they begun to tair the plank of the Bride.Mager Butrick Said if we wair all of his mind he wood Drive them away from the Bridge.They should not tair that up, we all said we wood go.we then warnt loded.We wait all ordered to load and had strick orders not to fire till they fird firs then, to fire as fast as we could.We then marched on.Capt Davis minnit company marched first then Capt. Allens minnit Company, the won that I was in next.We marched 2 deep. It was a Long Corsay Being round by the River .capt Davis had got I be Leave with 15 Rods of the B when they fired 3 gons one after the other.I see the Balls Strike in the River on the Right of me—as Soon as they fired.Then they fired on us.The balls whistled well.we then was all ordered to fire that could fire and not Kill our one men.It was Straing their warnt no more kild but they fired too high.Capt Davis was kild and one armorer and numbers wonded.We soon Drove them from the Bridge.When I got over thair was 2 lay Deed and another almost Ded.We Did not follow them.Thair was 8 or 10 that was wounded and a Running and Hobbling about Luckingback to See if we was after them.We then Saw the Hull Boddy acoming out of town.We then was ordered to Lay behind a a wall that Ran over a hill and when they tot near anuff Mager Buttrick said He Wood give the word fire but they Did not come quite so near as he expected before they halted.The Commanding offiser ordered the hull battalion to halt and the officers to the front march.The officers then marched to the front. Thair we Lay behind the wall about 200 of us with our gones cockd expecting evry minnit to have the word fire.Our order was if we fired to fire 2 or 3 times and then retreat if we had fired.I believe we could kild almost every offiser their was in the front but we had no orders to fire and their warnt a gon fired.They staid about 10 minnits and then marched back and we after them.After a while we fund them amarching back toward Boston.We was soon after them.;when they toty about mile half to a Road then come from bedored and Bildro they was Laid and a grait many killd.When I got thair was a grait many Lay Dead and the Road was as bloody as tho had been ten for a Dozen gog stock and Let Run.”
By comparison with the facsimiles of the original pages it will be seen that the foregoing lines have been divided into sentences.
The student of history will also note that according to Mr. Barrett’s account Major Buttrick was in command of the colonial forces, while the general understanding among historians seen to be that Captain Parker was in command.It is to settle just such nice little points as these, amoung other things, that the society which Colonel True represents has been organized, and anyone having any documents, or knowing anything which will throw light on revolutionary matter , will confer a favor on the society by communication with Col. True.
Source:“The Marion Daily Star”; April 9, 1898; Pgs 13 and 14 (Pg #s are bit hard to read).