Pension application of John Wiggs of Wayne County, North Carolina
W.4398 (Wife: Cherry)
Transcribed by Will Graves 3/13/09
(Corrections from NARA photocopy by Gail Tomlinson, Senatobia, MS, 1-10-2012)
Revolutionary Claim to June 7, 1832, Book E., Vol. 6, p. 50
See let. To Agt. Mar. 30, 1836. Ordered to pay 9 April 1841
With subsequent Application for Widow’s Pension Filed by Cherry Wiggs,
Under the Act of 6, April 1838. Indicates John Wiggs was paid from 4 September to 30 November 1841. Agt. Notified (of John Wiggs’ Death) 5 Dec. 1844.
Cherry Wiggs Widow’s Pension Began 28 December 1843.
[Methodology (Will Graves): Spelling, punctuation and/or grammar have been corrected in some instances for ease of reading and to facilitate searches of the database. Also, the handwriting of the original scribes often lends itself to varying interpretations. Users of this database are urged to view the original and to make their own decision as to how to decipher what the original scribe actually wrote. Blanks appearing in the transcripts reflect blanks in the original.]
State of North Carolina County of Wayne: Superior Court of Law Fall Term 1832
On this first day of October 1832 personally appeared in open court before J. J. Daniel Judge of the Superior Court of Law for the County of Wayne now sitting John Wiggs aged 74 years a resident of the County & State aforesaid who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following Declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June 7, 1832.
The that he entered the service of the United States by draft about 6 months before the Battle of Briar Creek in Georgia, as a private under Capt. William Fellows -- and Lieut. Jacob Hooks. That he was balloted for the term of 6 months. He was first marched to Kinston N.C. and there placed under command of Capt. Kenneday, Major Richard Grantham & Col. William Caswell. After a stay at Kinston of about 3 weeks he was ordered to the South. From Kinston he was marched to the Cape Fear River which they crossed at Waddel's ferry -- thence to Elizabeth
where he was stationed a few days -- thence passing through Lumberton ordered to Augusta
(Georgia) -- Declarant remembers note towns in South Carolina through which he passed on this tour. He remembers however being stationed a few days at a place called White Marsh. At Augusta declarant was placed under General Ashe at which place he was left by his company to attend, by permission of Capt. Kenneday, upon a sick brother who was also in the Army. He had remained several weeks in Augusta thus employed when he learned the news of the Defeat at the Battle of Briar Creek. The company to which Declarant belonged immediately dispersed and returned home as each man counted their term of service being almost expired. He never afterwards saw his Corps embodied but on his return home found the scattered fragments –
The Battle of Briar Creek was only a few days or about a week, according to Declarant's best
Page 2, Revolutionary War Pension Application of John Wiggs of Wayne County, NC
recollection, before he would have been entitled to a discharge. He received no written discharge -- & he believes none of the man in the company to which he belonged even stayed to receive one but he avers that he served out his term of 6 months except a week or thereabout.
In 1779 or 1780 Declarant, cannot say which, he enlisted as a private in a company of
(Lieutenant Arthur Jernigan) under Capt. Boone for a term of 3 months -- to suppress [indecipherable word or words] divisions in Wayne and the adjacent Counties -- and procure from the disaffected and these Counties provisions for the Army. He served out his term of 3 months and was dismissed honorably -- that he believes there was no written discharge.
After Lord Cornwallis landed at Wilmington and was marching through NC there was a
voluntary service of ten days in which Declarant engaged as sergeant under Captain Daniel Lofly. The object was to prevent Cornwallis if possible from passing Neuse River -- was quartered this time at Fellow's Branch and after the expiration of the term was honorably dismissed. The Declarant has no documentary evidence of his said services but can prove most of it he believes by Etheldred Jernigan who was his fellow soldier most of the time -- his service in the (company of Arthur Jernigan?) might also be proved by his old Capt. Joseph Boon [one or more indecipherable words] and information he lives in Johnston County. Declarant is 74 years of age according to a record in a large pocket book of the family. He hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present and declares that his name is not on the pension roll of any agency in any State. He has always lived in the County of Wayne.
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid.
/S/ John Wiggs (X his mark)
[John Howell, a clergyman, residing in Wayne County, North Carolina, and Richard Jernigan, also of Wayne County gave the standard supporting affidavit.]
I Etheldred Jernigan do hereby certify that I was with John Wiggs in his first term of service stated in his Declaration until he was left at Augusta -- and also was with him in the 10 days service of which he speaks -- and knows the main facts therein stated to be true.
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid
/S/ Etheldred Jernigan (X his mark)
Interrogatories prescribed by the War Department &c to John Wiggs:
Quest1: Where and in what year were you born?
Ans: I was born in Wayne County North Carolina 25 January 1758
Question 2: Have you any record of your age and if so where is it?
Ans: I have no other record of my age than a large pocket Book in which it is recorded -- in the
Page 3, Revolutionary War Pension Application of John Wiggs of Wayne County, NC
handwriting of my father -- which is now in possession of my sister in Wayne County.
Ques. 3: Where were you living when called into service: where have you lived since the
Revolutionary War and where do you now live?
Ans: I lived when called into Service in her Wayne County North Carolina then called Dobbs --
where I now live and where I have always lived -- except about 10 or 12 years which time I spent in Sampson County NC
Ques. 4th: How were you called into service; were you drafted; did you volunteer or were you a
substitute, and if in substitute, for whom?
Ans: I was drafted in my first Term of service or as it was then called balloted for 6 months. In
my 2nd and 3rd time I volunteered.
Ques. 5: State the names of some of the regular officers who were with the troops when you served, such Continental and militia regiments as you can recollect and the general circumstances of your service.
Ans: I cannot remember the name of any of the Regular or Continental officers or Regiments --
more than those stated in my above Declaration -- he saw but little of them and had very little
connection with them -- the general circumstances of my service are related in my Declaration
above as fully as I can remember them --
Ques. 6: Did you ever receive a discharge from the service, and if so, by whom was it given and what has become of it?
Ans: I received no discharges -- the reasons are assigned in my above Declaration -- I received
no Commission when I acted as sergeant in the 10 days service spoken of in my Declaration
Ques. 7: State the names _______________(space)
Ans: I can state as persons to whom I am known in my neighborhood and who can testify as to
my character for veracity and their belief of my services as a soldier of the Revolution [--] Rev. John Howell, Uriah Langston, Sampson Lane, Esq. & Calvin Coor, Esquire
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid, /S/ John Wiggs (X his mark)
Certification by Nicholson Washington, Clerk of the Superior Court of Law for the County of Wayne, that this paper is a part of the original proceedings of said court art the Fall Term 1832.
State of North Carolina County of Wayne: Superior Court of Law Spring Term 1833
Personally appeared before me John R. Donnell Judge of the Superior Court of said County John Wiggs who being duly sworn deposeth and saith in amendment to his Declaration &c bearing date first day of October 1832
Page 4, Revolutionary War Pension Application of John Wiggs of Wayne County, NC
That the time when he entered the service of the U. States his first Term as stated in his said Declaration hereunto attached and according to the best of his recollection in the spring of
1779 and that he served in this Term of at least 5 months and 2 weeks.
That his 2nd term of service as stated in his above Declaration commenced late in the winter of 1780 or early in the Spring of 1781 -- This he states in correction of his Declaration stating it to have commenced in 1779 or 1780 -- as the result of his better reflection. In his 2nd Term of service he remembers that Capt. Boon commanded his company -- his Lieut. was Arthur
Jernigan -- his Col. was Benjamin Exum.
That the date of his 3rd term of 10 days is stated in his said declaration was in March
1781 -- Benjamin Exum was his Col.
That he has no documentary evidence of his said services -- and knows of no person by whom he can prove his actual service but Etheldred Jernigan whose certificate was attached to his said Declaration -- Declarant procured said Jernigan's certificate because he could not safely swear that there was no person living by whom he could prove his said Service while said Jernigan was living -- said Jernigan having actually been with him in the 2 tours to which he has certified -- but this affiant cannot in good faith ask of said Court a certificate of the "credibility of the witness" as required in the regulation of the War Department. He therefore waives his testimony (though true) and depends on the traditionary evidence produced in his said Declaration -- hoping that the faults of the witness may not affect the claim of the Applicant who felt himself obliged to produce them.
Sworn to and subscribed in open Court the day and date above written.
/S/ John Wiggs (X his mark)
/S/ N. Washington, Clerk
[James Griswold, JP, attests the affidavit of H. W. Husted, who states he drew up Wiggs'
application using Jernigan's testimony knowing that Jernigan was 'infamous in consequence of
being convicted of larceny' because he, Husted, and Wiggs believed the War Department's
regulations required living witnesses to be produced even if they were 'infamous.']
[Widow’s Pension, summary:]
[On June 5th 1843, in Wayne County North Carolina Mrs. Cherry Wiggs, 80, filed for a widow's pension stating that she was the widow of John Wiggs, a revolutionary war pensioner at the rate of $30.66 per annum; that she was legally married to him in Sampson County in the spring of 1782 by the Rev. Fleet Cooper; that she has 5 children, the oldest Daniel lives in Alabama and is under the age of 60 years old; that the next oldest is a Raiford Wiggs who lives near her and is 58 years old that the next oldest is Grace Gurley, the wife of Lewis Gurley (with whom this declarant resides) and is 56 years old; that some 8 years after she married John Wiggs, they removed into Wayne County where they have resided ever since up to look time of his death on November 30th, 1841, in the 80th year of his age; that she remains his widow.]