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Showing posts with label Houghton Family. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Houghton Family. Show all posts

Saturday, April 19, 2014

"THE SHOT HEARD ROUND THE WORLD"

Today is the 239th Anniversary of the Battles of Lexington  & Concord which
started the American Revolution on 19Apr 1775. While the traditional
reenactments of the battles will take place today, they are celebrated in
Massachusetts on Patriots Day, the third Monday in April, when the Boston
Marathon is run.

These are our colonial ancestors from our Dad' s family lines for whom I have
so far been able to discover records.



Jonathan Barker Jr. My 4x great grandfather
Was a Minuteman from Methuen Ma with rank of Sergeant.
He responded to Lexington and Concord with his sons
Served in Captain Samuel Johnson's Company in
Colonel Titcomb's Regiment for 2 months in 1777 in Rhode
Island and then with Nathaniel Gage's Company in Colonel
Jacob Gerrish's guards from Dec 1777 tol April 1778 guarding
the captured troops of General Burgoyne.


Jonathan Barker 3rd  My 5x great grandfather
Enlisted on 19 Apr 1775 in Continental Army, Capt. John
Davis' Company, Col. James Frye's Regiment, in the
Massachusetts line for 8 months in Cambridge, Ma. At the
conclusion of the term, he reenlisted for another 3 months in
Capt John Allen's Company, Colonel John Waldron's Regiment,
General Sullivan's Brigade in the New Hampshire Brigade at
Charlestown, Ma. He then enlisted a third time in June 1778
at Methuen, Ma., joining Captain Samuel Carr's Company, Col.
James Weston's Regiment, in General Lerned's Brigade at
White Plains, N.Y. and serving for another 9 months.


John Ames   My 5x great grandfather
Was a Minuteman under Capt. Asa Parker on April 18th,
1775. He then enlisted in the Continental Army under Captain
Oliver Parker, Col. William Prescott's Regiment and
in the Brigade that was commanded in turn by Generals
Putnam, Lee, and Washington and served for 8 1/2 months.


Asa Barrows    My 4x great grandfather

A member of the militia from Middleborough , Ma. (south of
Boston) in the Company of Captain Joshua Benson, in Colonel
Cotton's Regiment, and General William Heath's Brigade for
8 months during the siege of Boston. In December 1776 he
joined a militia Company commanded by Captain Joshua
Perkins and marched to Barrington, R.I. and was stationed
there for 6 weeks. In July 1780 he again enlisted, this time
in a militia company commanded by Captain Perez Churchill
that marched to Tiverton, R.I. .


Moses Coburn  My 4x great grandfather
Moses Coburn got into the War late and by reason of being
"hired by a certain class of men in the then town of Dunstable
to go into the Continental Army in the summer of 1781."
When he reached Phillipsburgh in New York he was placed in
Captain Benjamin Pike's Company, in the Regiment of the
Massachusetts line commanded by Lt. Colonel Calvin Smith in
which he served for nearly two years until it was broken up.
He then transferred to the Company of Judah Alden in the
Regiment commanded by Colonel Sprouts until his discharge
in 1783.


Samuel Haskell   My 5x great grandfather
Samuel served in Captain Joseph Elliott's Company in Colonel
William Turner's Regiment and then under Captain Hezekiah
Whitney in Colonel Josiah Whitney's Regiment.


Amos Hastings   My 5x great grandfather
Amos  responded to the Lexington Alarm as part of
Captain Richard Ayer's Company and Colonel William
Johnson's Regiment. He later served in Captain Timothy
Eaton's Company in Colonel Edward Wigglesworth's Regiment
and was at the taking of the British General Burgoyne at
Ticonderoga.


Elisha Houghton   5x great grandfather
Enlisted at Harvard Ma as a Private in May of 1777 in the
Massachusetts militia and was at the Battles of Bunker Hill
and Stillwater. He then enlisted for three years in the infantry
company commanded by Captain Joshua Brown in Colonel
Timothy Bigelow's 15th Regiment of the Massachusetts line.
and took part in the Battles of Monmouth and Newport and
was at Valley Forge. He twice was promoted to Sergeant and
twice was busted back down to the ranks.


Amos Upton    My 5x great grandfather
Responded to the Lexington Alarm and marched there from
his home in Reading. He later joined the militia company
commanded by Captain Asa Prince as an orderly sergeant
and then enlisted for eight months in the Continental Army
under Colonel Mansfield. He was at the Battle of Bunker Hill.
He was discharged in October of 1775.


John Griffith  My 5x great grandfather
Enlisted in 1781 as a Matross (he swabbed out the barrel of
the cannons after they fired, or so I've been told) in Captain
William Treadwell's Company in Colonel John Crane's
Artillery Regiment.


Reuben Packard   My 5x great grandfather
A Sergeant in Captain Josiah Hayden's Company in Colonel
Bailey's militia. They marched to Lexington at news of the
Alarm. He also responded several more times as a Minuteman
for a total of nearly 8 months duty.


Jonathan Abbott   My 5x great grandfather
Served as a Sergeant in the Militia under Captain Henry
Abbott and responded to the Lexington Alarm


Samuel Stowe  My 5x great grandfather
Minuteman from Sherborn, Ma. Served in Capt. Benjamin Bullard's
Company in Col. Asa Whitcomb's 5th Massachusetts Bay
Provincial Regiment.


Besides those direct ancestors, these other relatives fought
in the Revolution:

Moses Barrows, brother to Asa Barrows.

Samuel, Jesse, and Benjamin Barker, sons of Jonathan
Barker, Jr. and brothers to Jonathan Barker 3rd.

James Swan, brother in law to Jonathan Barker.

Monday, September 17, 2012

ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 6

In the last entry in this series about Elisha Houghton's Revolutionary War
Pension file, I posted the transcription of Elisha's request to be transferred
from the Massachusetts Veterans Roll to that of Vermont where he had
relocated.He made the request in January of 1823 and it was granted by
September of the same year. The final image from his file in a combination
of printed and handwritten information from both 1818, the year of the
original pension filing, and 1823 when the transfer was made:  


"4.189 From
Massachusetts

_______________________
to Vermont
Elisha Houghton
Capt Brown
private,
Massachusetts line 1778 3 years

in the army of the United States during the Revolutionary War
________________________________________________
Subscribed on the Roll of Massachusetts
at the rate of -8- Dollars per month to commence on
the
6th of May, 1818.
_________________________________________________
Certificate of Pension issued the 17th of Nov. 1818,
and sent to Jo. Woodbridge, Esq
Stockbridge, Ma.

_________________________________________________
Arrears to the 4th of Sept. 1818                 31.76
Semi-anl. all'ce ending 4th Mar 1819       48.00
                                                                       _______
          Continued                                            $79.76
                                                                        _______
                         {Revolutionary claim)
                            Act 18th March, 1818

He died Nov 1826
Adams,
Berkshire Co
"

On the right hand side of the sheet  are three oval shapes that probably were
left by wax seals. There are also two handwritten items. One is written along
the left hand side of the fold the length of the paper from top to bottom and
reads:

"Notification sent September 6th 1823
Parker L. Hall, Lenox, Massachusetts "


To the right of that is another notation:

"Date of death on
other side
from AB."


The added notes are a little confusing. The "He died Nov 1826"  was added
later but because of where it was placed it makes it appear Elisha died in
Adams, Berkshire County, Ma. when he actually died in Vermont. Also there
are some figures just to the left of sum of 31.76 that I couldn't decipher.  

So my 5x great grandfather collected $96 dollars a year for eight years from
1818 until his death at age eighty in Vermont in 1826. Why he had moved to
Vermont, and who he was lving with. is something I need to investigate further.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 5

Sometime between 1820 and 1823 my ancestor Elisha Houghton moved to
Vermont from Western Massachusetts. So far I haven't been able to find out
why he went there instead of to Oxford County Maine where his children
now lived. Perhaps there were relatives or old friends living in Vermont.
In any case when he left Massachusetts he had to apply to have his pension
payments transferred to his new place of residence. The remaining images
in Elisha's file deal with that transfer.




The first image is a folded sheet of paper. On the left hand side is a hand-
written note:

"Elisha Houghton must make a new affidavit agreeably to the within form
and transmit it to the War Department before his name can be transferred.
                                                                               10 Jan 1823"


  On the right is the following (I'm not sure that the date is the 10th or 15th):

"Transferred from Massachusetts to Vermont on the 10th(? ) Feby 1823
from 4th Sept. 1823.
Elisha Houghton
Mar 19"






Next is the actual transfer application. It's another preprinted form with
information filled "in the blanks" which I've designated with italicized print:






                                                  APPLICATION FOR A TRANSFER  
                                                          ____________________

"State of Vermont
County of Bennington ss.
On this 21st day of January 1823, before me, the subscriber, a Justice of the
Peace for the said county of
Bennington, personally appeared Elisha Houghton
who, on his oath, declares that he is the same person who formerly belonged
to the company commanded by Captain
Joshua Brown in the regiment
commanded by Colonel
Timothy Bigelow in the service of the United States;
that his name was placed on the pensions roll of the state of
  Massachusetts
from whence he has lately removed; that he now resides in the state
(district, or territory) of
Vermont where he intends to remain, and wishes his
pension to be there payable, in the future. That at present receives
eight
dollars per month
                                                                                                       his                                                 
                                                                                           Elisha   X  Houghton
                                                                                                       mark

Sworn and subscribed to, before
me. the day and year aforesaid    
}                  O.C. Merrill,  Justice of Peace.
NOTE. The oath to be taken before a duly qualified magistrate, whose
official character and signature must be properly authenticated."


Then on the back is a handwritten note:







"State of Vermont
I, Joel Pratt Clerk of Bennington County Court do hereby certify  that Orsamus
C Merrill Esquire is a Justice of the peace acting  under the Authority of this
State & that the within signature is his.
In testimony whereof I hereto set my hand & affix the seal of said county
court this 28th day of January AD1823-
Joel Pratt Clerk"


Next we'll see if Elisha's transfer  was allowed and the amount of his pension.                                 

Monday, August 27, 2012

ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 4


This image from Elisha's pension file is one of my favorite family
documents for the reasons that it was the first time I'd ever
heard of the word "firkin". (cousin Chris Dunham explained it to me).
The preprinted part is in bold face, the filled in parts are italicized. 




"District of Massachusetts,ss1

On this day Sixth day of July 1820:Personally appeared in open
Court before the circuit Court of Common Pleas, begun and holden
in Lenox ,within and for County of Berkshire ,in the Western Circuit,
on the 4th Monday of June 1820, the same Court, being a Court
of record for said Circuit; preceeding according to the course of the
common Law, with a jurisdiction, unlimited in point of amount,
kereping a record of its proceedings, and having the power of fine
and imprisonment,

Elisha Houghton aged 71 years, resident in Adams in the County
of Berkshire aforesaid, who being first duly sworn, according to
law,doth on his oath declare, that he served in the revolutionary
war as follows; that he enlisted in the company commanded by
Captain Brown in the regiment commanded by Colonel Bigelow
in the line of the State of Massachusetts on the Continental
establishment. That his original declaration is dated May 6th 
1818 and that his pension certificate is numbered 4,189.

And I do solemnly swear, that I was a resident Citizen of the
United States, on the 18th day of March, 1818, and I have not
since that time, by gift, sale or in any manner disposed of my
property, or any part thereof with intent, thereby to diminish it,
as to bring myself within the provisions of an Act of Congress
entitled "An Act to provide for certain persons, engaged in
the land and naval services of the United States, in the
Revolutionary war," passed on the 18th day of March, 1818,
and that I have not, nor has any person in trust for me any
property or securities, contracts, or debts, due to me, nor
have I any income, other than what is contained in the schedule,
hereto  annexed, and by me subscribed-schedule of property,
necessary clothing and bedding excepted-to wit:

1 Tub and firkin --------.33
1 Iron pot--------------- -.75
1 Salt mortar-------------.12
1 Tea kettle--------------.75
1 Sugar box of Plates---.19
1 Tin tumbler ------------.6
1 Old Pail------------------.13
                                  ­­­­­­­­­­­_______
                                    2.33


That I am by occupation a Labourer that I am not able to labor,
that the number of my family residing with me is none.
(signed) Elisha Houghton                                              

Sworn to, and declared on the Five day of July 1820, before the
said Court                         
Parker L Hall (illegible) pro tem

I Parker L Hall Clerk of the Circuit Court of Common Pleas
within  and for the County of Berkshire do hereby certify, that the
foregoing oath and the schedule thereto annexed, are truly copied
from the record of said Court; and I do further certify,that it is the
opinion of the said Court, that the total amount in value of the
property exhibited in the aforesaid schedule is two dollars and  
thirty three cents.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and affixed 
the seal of said Court on this ninth day of August 1820.

Parker L Hall   }Clerk of the Court for the County of Berkshire."    

ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 3

The next image is of the other side of Elisha's affidavit. It appears the piece
of paper was folded in half twice lengthways which created four panels. There
are some words I couldn't read and I note them in parentheses. Likewise,
there are two words I'm not sure I've read correctly so I've used a (?) to
show that.




The text above the first fold appears to be an earlier version of Justice
Samuel Putnam's certification of Elisha's testimony. Apparently he decided to
write it on the bottom of the first side instead. He didn't sign this version:

"I
do certify that it appears to my satisfaction
that the said Elisha Houghton did serve
in the revolutionary war as stated in
the within declaration against the common
enemy and I now transmit the procedings
and testimony taken and had before me
to the secretary for the department of  war
pursuant to the directions of the (can't read it)
out of Congress-"


The second panel served as a cover to the document when it was folded
up. As such the writing is at a right angle to the rest of the page:

"Elisha Houghton
Bigelow's Mass. Regt.
Correct."


The third and fourth panels are statements by two witnesses as to the
character of Elisha Houghton and the truth of his story.

"I Asa Dean of Adams in the County of Berkshire Physician do certify
that I have known Elisha Houghton within mentioned a number
of years & that his reputation
(?) for truth is good and I have no
no doubt of the truth of  this notation
(?) made by him within
mentioned as his story has always been the same
(can't read)
his
(can't read)                                                                   Asa Dean

May 6th 1818
Sworn to before me
S. Putnam  Just. S.J.C."

"I Nathan Putnam of Adams also do certify that I have
known Elisha Houghton a number of years & I have no
doubt but the certificate of Dr. Asa Dean above is true
                                                                  Nathan Putnam
May 6.  1818
Sworn to before me
S. Putnam J.S.J.C."

ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 2

This next part of Elisha Houghton's pension file is an image
of a sheet of paper with handwriting on both sides. This side
is the more legible.The other side is a mess, so I'll discuss that
in the next installment.




"Commonwealth of Massachusetts
(“District of” crossed out) Berkshires  of Commonwealth of 

Massachusetts.On this sixth day of May 1818 Before me the 
subscriber one of the Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court
of said Commonwealth personally appears Elisha Houghton 
aged sixty eight years resident in the town of Adams in said 
district who being by me first duly sworn according to law 
doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to 
obtain the provisions made by the late act of  congress entitled 
`an act to provide for certain persons engaged in the land 
and naval services of the  United States in the revolutionary war
` that the said Houghton enlisted as a private in May 1778 in
the town of Harvard in the state of Massachusetts in the 
company commanded by Captain Joshua Brown of the fifteenth 
Regiment of commanded by Col. Timothy Bigelow.That he 
continued in the service of the United States until May 1781 
when he was discharged from service at West Point in the 
State of Newyork. That he was in the Battles of  Bunker Hill
Stillwater Monmouth and Newport and that he is in reduced 
circumstances and stands in need of the assistance of his 
country for support and that he has no other evidence now in 
his possession of his said services and relinquishes all claim
to any other Pension but what he now asks for.

Sworn to and declared before me this day and year aforesaid
Berks.ss                                                        S. Putnam Just
May 6 1818                                                 S.J. Court of Massts


I Samuel Putnam one of the Justices of the aforesaid Court do 

certify that it does appear to my satisfaction that the said Elisha 
Houghton did serve in the Revolutionary war as stated in the
preceding declaration against the Common enemy and I now 
transmit it the preceding and testimony taken here before me to 
the Secretary of the Department of War. Given under my hand 
at said Court.

S. Putnam Justice S.J. Court of Massachusetts"




ELISHA HOUGHTON'S PENSION FILE PT 1

This is the beginning of my transcription of the images of the Revolutionary
War Pension file of my ancestor Elisha Houghton. The file covers his original
filing in his native state of Massachusetts, and then his application to have
his pension transferred to the state of Vermont. THe pages are a mixture of
preprinted text and handwritten additions, so I've used a system I've used
previously by boldfacing the preprinted words  and italicizing the added
parts. Words or phrases that I couldn't decipher are in parentheses.



The first image is the file cover with the following:
Service                                                                                               Number
Mass.                           Elisha Houghton                                       S39725


The second image is of the beginning of Elisha's  paperwork. It's folded
in thirds, with no writing on the left hand panel. The middle is a preprinted
form.The file number 3925 is written above the printed word INVALID. To
the left of that is the abbreviation Revy for Revolutionary. The rest reads


 
File No. 39725
Elisha Houghton
Pri Rev War

_________
Act: 18th March 18th
Index:--Vol.S, Page 232
(Arrangement of 1870)

On the right hand fold  someone wrote:

27-Aug-25 Hist. to Kate
Starbird. Her letter in
(I can't read the next word) of Elias
Monk
(I can't make out the rest).

This last part refers to a researcher named Kate Starbird. Apparently she'd
written a letter inquiring about the records of Elisha Houghton and Elias
Monk. A copy of a  typewritten reply to her on Elisha's record is included
in Elisha's record. It is dated August 25th, 1927.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A TALE OF TWO HANNAHS

Back when I really caught the genealogy bug I downloaded the Personal
Ancestry File program and then filled in the pedigree chart using the information
my Aunt Dorothy had sent us years before and then I moved on to what I
found in our original copu of Florence O' Connor's The Ancestors and Descendants
of Asa Freeman Ellingwood and Florilla (Dunham) Ellingwood
. Then once that
was done I started trying to fill in the blanks. One of these was the identity of the
wife of Elisha Houghton who was Florilla Dunham's great grandmother.
On page 200 of the O'Connor book, Elisha's wife is listed as "unknown". Eventually
I was able to find a record online for the marriage of an Elisha Houghton and a
Meriah Pairs  in Bolton, Ma on 30Nov, 1765.(Her name is also given as Moriah Peirce
or Pierce in other records.). Here's an image of the record

I moved on to find Meriah's parents. Given the variations of Meriah's last name I'd
already encountered, I tried every spelling I could think of in my search. Her birth
record gave her father's name as John and her mother's as Hannah Pierce, so at
least I had the first name. Given that Elisha and Meriah had married in Bolton, I
seached the online  records for there and the neighboring towns of Lancaster and
Harvard in the years prior to Meriah's birth in 1748. I found  a marriage record with
the date of 22 Nov 1744 for John Pirce and Hanna Stone in Harvard Ma. It fit the right
period of years, and confident that I'd found the right person, I continued on tracing
Hannah Stone's lineage eventually back to Deacon Simon Stone and Mary Whipple. 
Then I moved on to my next "blank".

Neat, huh?

((CUE the "WRONG ANSWER!" buzzer here))

Not hardly, but it would be several years before I discovered why not.

About two weeks ago, I was checking out some of the new shaking leaves on
Ancestry.com and found two records for an intention of marriage for John Pirce,
and a  Hannah Houghton made on 10Mar 1747.  It would appear  that  Hannah
(Stone) Pierce died sometime between 1744 and 1747, and that Hannah
(Houghton)Pierce is instead the mother of Meriah Pierce. Looking into this
further it adds up. Hannah Houghton' s parents were Thomas Houghton and
Meriah Moore, which would mean Meriah Peirce was named after her grandmother.
Moreover, Elisha and Meriah (Pierce)Houghton were ist cousins once removed,
sharing descent from James Houghton and  Mary Sawyer.

So I've been doing a bit of "Bonsai Genealogy" lately:snipping off the Stones from
my family tree and grafting the new Moore branch on to it.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

ELISHA HOUGHTON HAD A GUN....AND THEN HE DIDN'T.

 ((I've planned several times in the past to post a transcription of 
my 5x great grandfather Elisha Houghton's Revolutionary War 
Pension file. I'm going to give it another shot(really) but in the 
meantime here's a prelude first published in 2009. Bad enough
Elisha had to deal with the British, but he had to deal with
having a gun taken by his fellow patriots as well!))



I mentioned my ancestor Elisha Houghton the other day and
that he was a veteran of the Revolutionary War. I found this
story about him in History of the Town of Harvard, Massachusetts
1732-1893 by Henry Steadman Nourse (p323):


"Coliney of the Massachusetts Bay.

To the Honnorabel General Coart seting at Watertown the Petion
of Elisha Houghton a Solder under Comand of Captan Hastings in Conl
Whitcomb's Rigement in the year 1775 and I was in the fight on Bunkers
hill So Called in Charlston on the 17 of June in the year 1775 as above
sd and on my Return I and others Lited on one Jacob Davis who was
wounded who requested our help and in tacking Care of the sd Davis
Caused me your Petinor to take Mistick Road to convey the sd Davis to
where he thought he could be tacken Care of and in so Doing 1 came
acros by Winter hill to go to head Quater at Cambridge and in Coming
by the Gard of Connal Starks which was set on sd hill they took away
my Gun which I and others that Knew sd Gun Judged to be worth teen
Dolers. I Endevuered to Recover my Gun again but was Denied the
Same which may be made Evident to this Coart by Reading the Paper
acompining this Petition. 1 also Sertify this Coart that I have Never
Reseved my Gun since Nor any Consideration for the same. I therefore
your Poor Petitioner Humbly Pray that this Coart would be Pleased to
take my Case into your Consideration and alow me Pay for my Gun
and your Petitioner as in Duty bound Shall Ever Pray. Bolton Jan. the —
1776 Elisha Houghton

This may Certify that Elisha Houghton of Col Whitcomb's Regiment
in Capt. Hasting's Company was in the Action on Bunker's hill and
helping bringing the wounded men off to Cambridge went mistick Road over
Winter hill and the Guard that was set on winter hill took away the Guns,
and this sd Houghton's Gun was among the Rest, the next Day with [a]
number of others sd Houghton went in order to Get his Gun with an officer
with him, but could not find it and have Never heard of it since—as I know of.

Josiah Whitney, Lt. Col. of sd Rgmt.
Dorchester Camp Febury 29th. 1776"

I don't know if Elisha ever got recompensed for his lost gun, but I suspect he
waa the one of the earliest victims of "requisitioning" in the American
military tradition.

Friday, November 25, 2011

WHOSIWHATSIS LIVED NEAR THE HOOSIC-WHISICK POND

I've written before about my ancestor Ralph Houghton who was one
the original settlers of Lancaster Ma. But the town was abandoned
after the destruction of the town in 1675/6 in the colonial Indian Wars.
Ralph and the other townsfolk retreated back to the coast by Boston
until it was once more safe to go back to Lancaster. But while some of
his children did return, Ralph himself ended his days on a farm in the
safer location of Milton Ma. 

Ralph's land sits near the Blue Hills and among it's features was a spring
fed pond that the local Indian's called the Hoosic-Whisck. While the
Indian name was still occasionally used as late as the early 1900's, over
time the pond became known simply as Houghton's Pond.. Today the
pond and the land Ralph Houghton once farmed are part of the Blue
Hills Reservation where among other things copperhead and timber
rattlesnakes roam in sight of the skyscrapers of Boston.

Milton is right next to the Dorchester and Mattapan sections of Boston
and when we were kids our parents occasionally took us to Houghton's
Pond for a swim during the summer(although not as often as we went to
Houghs Neck in Quincy). It amazed me when I started researching the
family tree to find out we had went swimming in a place named after
someone we were related to and we never had a clue!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

HOUGHTON: HERE'S A WHO, WHAT, WHEN AND ...2

Having downloadrd The Houghton Genealogy I set out to see what I could find
out about Lt. Jonathan Houghton's part in the West India Expedition and found
this in the family of Jacob Houghton and Rebecca Whitcomb  on page 307:
"Jonathan, b. in 1708; d. in 1740: m.1, 20, 1725 Mary Houghton, who died in
Bolton in 1791. He was lieut. in Captain John Prescott's Company, which was
sent  out to aid Admiral Vernon's disastrous expedition against the Spanish
West Indies, whence not more than fifty of the five hundred from Massachusetts
returned. His wife was appointed administratix of her husband's estate  4,2,1744
".

Right away I knew this was not the right Lt Jonathan Houghton because his
wife was a Mary Houghton, not the Sarah Houghton I was researching, and he
had died in the Spanish West Indies before Sarah Houghton had even been born.
 

On the next page (p308) I found him as one of the children of  a Jonathan
Houghton and Thankful White:
"Lieut. Jonathan, b. 3,28, 1719; m. 2 ,22, 1742, Sarah Houghton, b.5, 2, 1742;
dau. of James and Sarah Houghton. Jonathan came from Bolton, Mass., and
settled on the farm where A.D. Kerr now lives. He was a farmer and a noted
hewer of timber. He was a Revolutionary soldier and wounded at the Battle
of Bennington."


So there was my correct Lt. Jonathan Houghton. As it turns out,  Jonathan was
not a close cousin of his wife, at least not through her ancestor Ralph Houghton.
Jonathan was descended from a John Houghton who may or may not have been
Ralph's brother. But now I had another intersting question. I have Prescott
ancestors from the same area; what relation was this Captain John Prescott to
my Prescott line and had perished in the West Indies as well?

I found the following in Dr William Prescott's  Prescott Memorial (Boston, 1870)
on page 50:  
"John Prescott graduated Harvard College 1727. He settled in Concord, Mass.,
as a physician, with his father, where he was highly esteemed for his professional
skill and excellent character. He enlisted one hundred men, which he commanded
 in the unfortunate expedition to Cuba in 1740. Upon its failure, in 1743, he returned
 to this country, and soon after was sent by the Government to England, where he
was treated with great respect. But, being seized with the small-pox, he died of
that disease in London, Dec 30, 1743, in his thirty-seventh year. In testimony of the
esteem in which his services were held, the British Government conferred upon
his widow, an annual pension during her life. She died May 12, 1795, aged 88.
They had three sons and two daughters."


Captain John Presscott is a distant cousin as he was descended from the older
brother of my ancestor Jonas Prescott.

Even though neither Jonathan Houghton nor John Prescott are direct
relations to me, it was an interesting exercise for me. It was a preview
of some of the difficulties I'm going to have researching the Houghtons,
Prescotts and other lines where there are more than one family member
with the same name who are contemporaries.living in the same area.
And it brought home to me how much more I need to learn about
colonial history. I knew that the colonists served in local militias in campaigns
against the French in Canada; I hadn't know about them being used against the
Spanish in the Carribean!

There's always some new to learn in genealogy and family history!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

HOUGHTON: HERE'S A WHO, WHAT, WHEN AND ...

Last Wednesday night I was adding collateral lines of the Houghton Family
to my family tree when I ran across an instance of a Sarah Houghton marryng
a Jonathan Houghton. It didn't strike me as all that odd as I'm now used to
encountering instances of cousins marrying. There was also a refernce to
a Lt Jonathan Houghton being part of a "West India Expedition" in 1740.
Now that did puzzle me. Was it West India as in the southeast Asian
country or was it the West Indies area of the Carribean?  And what was a
citizen of a Massachusetts frontier town doing on such an expedition?

I didn't have anything here at home on a West India Expedition and had
no luck initially Googling about it so I put out a question to my genealogy
friends on Facebook . Marcia Rice found a link to a Wikipedia article on
The Battle of Cartagena de Indias, and Kim von Aspern found a review
of a book on the subject here. It turns out that was part of a conflict
between Britain and Spain called the War of Jenkins' Ear. (Aha! When
they mentioned it in passing back in high school or college I bet you didn't
think you'd ever hear about that little war again. Ha! Little did you know
you'd be reading my blog!). In short, the Expedition was an epic fail led by
the British Admiral Vernon against Spanish holdings in the West Indies. But
there was no information on how and why Lt. Jonathan Houghton ended up
as part of the ill fated campaign.

I found  a partial answer when I downloaded the free book The Houghton Genealogy: The Descendants of Ralph and John Houghton of Lancaster, Massachusetts by John Wesley Houghton (New York 1912),

I'll discuss that in the next part

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

WHICH HANNAH?

While I'm researching and adding collateral lines on my Ancestry tree I'm
also rechecking each ancestral generation. Right now I'm concentrating on my
Houghton line and in doing that I discovered a problem the other night.
Back when I first started, I'd found what I thought was the mother of my 5x
greatgrandmother Meriah (Peirce) Houghton.   Somewhere I found information
that Meriah was the daughter of John Peirce(Pirce/Pierce/Pairs) and his wife
Hannah. Where I found it, I don't know, because at time I was not keeping
a record of sources. I suspect it was the old FamilySearch because that was
my "go-to" spot back then.

So I set out to find the maiden name of Hannah Peirce and again, I found the
information that John Pirce had married Hannah Stone in Harvard, Worcester Co.,
Ma on  Nov. 22, 1744. From that I was able to extend the line back through Simon
Stone and discovered some interesting  stories about the Stone family's part in
the colonial Indian wars.

I bet some of you can already see where this is going, can't you?

The other night I was, as I said, working on that Houghton line. I was checking
the birth, marriage and death dates I had against the Early Massachusetts Vital 
Record site. One of my collateral Houghton cousins was Hannah Houghton
and while I couldn't find a record of her birth I did find one of her marriage
intentions....to John Pirce. Hmm. Could it be the same John Pirce who was
Meriah Perce's father?

Next I searched the various spellings of Peirce/Pirce/Pierce/Pairs and found the
following:
    John and Hannah Stone, Nov. 22, 1744.
    John and Hannah Houghton, int. Mar. 10, 1747.

So I'm now left with the question which Hannah was the mother of Meriah Peirce?
Meriah was reported to be born on  Oct 19, 1748. So if Hannah (Stone) Peirce died
sometime before Marh of 1747, it's quite possible that John then  married Hannah
Houghton who then gave birth to Meriah.

Sigh.

Monday, July 19, 2010

AMANUENSIS MONDAY: THE PENSION FILE STATEMENT OF ELISHA HOUGHTON

 I mentioned in an earlier post that I would be exploring the
Revolutionary War service of my ancestor Elisha Houghton.
I'm starting off with his testimony from his Pension Request 
file as given to Justice Samuel Putnam :


"Commonwealth of Massachusetts
(“District of” crossed out) Berkshires  of Commonwealth of 

Massachusetts .
On this sixth day of May 1818 Before me the subscriber one of 

the Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court of said Commonwealth  
personally appears Elisha Houghton aged sixty eight years
resident in the town of Adams in said district who being by me
first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the 
following declaration in order to obtain the provisions made 
by the late act of  congress entitled `an act to provide for 
certain persons engaged in the land and naval services of the 
United States in the revolutionary war ‘ that the said Houghton
enlisted as a private in May 1778 in the town of Harvard in the
state of Massachusetts in the company commanded by Captain
Joshua Brown of the fifteenth Regiment of commanded by Col. 
Timothy Bigelow.That he continued in the service of the United 
States  until May 1781 when he was discharged from service 
at West Point in the State of Newyork. That he was in the 
Battles of  Bunker Hill Stillwater Monmouth and Newport and 
that he is in reduced circumstances and stands in need of the 
assistance of his country for support and that he has no other 
evidence now in his possession of his said services and
relinquishes all claim to any other Pension but what he now 

asks for.

Sworn to and declared before me this day and year aforesaid
Berks.ss                                                        S. Putnam Just
May 6 1818                                                 S.J. Court of Massts


I Samuel Putnam one of the Justices of the aforesaid Court do 

certify that it does appear to my satisfaction that the said Elisha 
Houghton did serve in the Revolutionary war as stated in the
preceding declaration against the Common enemy and I now 
transmit it the preceding and testimony taken here before me to 
the Secretary of the Department of War. Given under my hand 
at said Court.

S. Putnam Justice S.J. Court of Massachusetts"




Bunker Hill is squeezed into the document and appears to have been
added later. Elisha's signature is written above the words " the year
aforesaid.

We'll start exploring the facts of the statement next.

I posted this today to take part in "Amanuensis Monday" which is a
blog meme started by John Newmark at his TransylvanianDutch blog.
John's definition of an amanuensis" is "a person employed to write
what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."
In which case, Samuel Putnam was Elisha Houghton's amanuensis and
I in turn am his!

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

ELISHA HOUGHTON: "ON GUARD", "ON COMMAND" AND BUSTED BACK DOWN TO THE RANKS!

Back in November of last year I wrote my first two posts here about
my 5x greatgrandfather Elisha Houghton, including one which told how
he lost his rifle in the aftermath of Bunker Hill. Looking over his service
record and the muster rolls for his regiment, it struck me he was a
colorful fellow and I decided to do a series transcribing his Pension
Request file. But the busy Christmas season at work and then my
illness at the start of the year postponed that.

Then last week I was thinking about what I might want to post about
here for the 4th of July and research once more piqued my interest in
Elisha.First there were the battles he took part in, and secondly there
was the fact he'd twice been a sergeant, and twice he'd been broken
back down to the ranks. Third, his pension request file is relatively
small compared to some of the others I have (My 4x great granduncle
Benjamin Barker's file, for example, has 86 images if I include the
service records and muster rolls.) and I thought I could write about it
in only a few blog entries.

As Robert Burns said, the best laid plans of mice and men so often go
aglae.

So I began by looking over the service records, and then the muster rolls,
and this is the information they gave me in chronological order of Elisha
Houghton's military career with the Massachusetts 15th Regiment of the
Continental Army in a company commanded by Captain Joshua Brown:

1May 1777  enlists for 3 years
1Nov 1777 appointed Sgt
10Dec 1777  Sick at Albany.
Jan 1778 reduced to ranks as Pvt.
21Feb 1778 On command at Albany  Jan 1778
5Mar 1778 Sick in Albany Feb1778 Valley Forge
Apr 1778 Sick in camp March 1778 Valley Forge
2May 1778 On Guard Apr 1778 Valley Forge
2Jun 1778 Sgt May 1778 Valley Forge
25Sep 1779 reduced to ranks as Pvt.
1May 1780 discharged at"Camp near Robinson's Farm(?)"

(This doesn't include his previous service with the militia at Boston.)

Looking at this raised a question I hadn't considered before. I knew
what"on guard" meant  and of course "sick", but what did "on
command"mean?Not finding much information on my own I asked my
friends on Facebook if anyone knew what the term meant. I received
answers and suggestions from genealogist and non-genealogist friends
alike, and I finally decided that the best explanation was that Elisha
was either on a special detail or detached duty from his company
during those periods he was "on command".

There is of course more to explore about Elisha Houghton then I
originally thought, and that's what I'll be doing in honor of him and my
other Revolutionary War ancestors during this month of July.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

ELISHA HOUGHTON HAD A GUN...AND THEN HE DIDN'T.

I mentioned my ancestor Elisha Houghton the other day and
that he was a veteran of the Revolutionary War. I found this
story about him in History of the Town of Harvard, Massachusetts
1732-1893 by Henry Steadman Nourse (p323):


"Coliney of the Massachusetts Bay.

To the Honnorabel General Coart seting at Watertown the Petion
of Elisha Houghton a Solder under Comand of Captan Hastings in Cona
Whitcomb's Rigement in the year 1775 and I was in the fight on bunkers
Hill So Called in Charlston on the 17 of June in the year 1775 as above
sd and on my Return I and others Lited on one Jacob Davis who was
wounded who requested our help and in tacking Care of the sd Davis
Caused me your Petinor to take Mistick Road to convey the sd Davis to
where he thought he could be tacken Care of and in so Doing 1 came
acros by Winter hill to go to head Quater at Cambridge and in Coming
by the Gard of Connal Starks which was set on sd hill they took away
my Gun which I and others that Knew sd Gun Judged to be worth teen
Dolers. I Endevuered to Recover my Gun again but was Denied the
Same which may be made Evident to this Coart by Reading the Paper
acompining this Petition. 1 also Sertify this Coart that I have Never
Reseved my Gun since Nor any Consideration for the same. I therefore
your Poor Petitioner Humbly Pray that this Coart would be Pleased to
take my Case into your Consideration and alow me Pay for my Gun
and your Petitioner as in Duty bound Shall Ever Pray. Bolton Jan. the —
1776 Elisha Houghton

This may Certify that Elisha Houghton of Col Whitcomb's Regiment
in Capt. Hasting's Company was in the Action on Bunker's hill and
helping bringing the wounded men off to Cambridge went mistick Road over
Winter hill and the Guard that was set on winter hill took away the Guns,
and this sd Houghton's Gun was among the Rest, the next Day with [a]
number of others sd Houghton went in order to Get his Gun with an officer
with him, but could not find it and have Never heard of it since—as I know of.

Josiah Whitney, Lt. Col. of sd Rgmt.
Dorchester Camp Febury 29th. 1776"

I don't know if Elisha ever got recompensed for his lost gun, but I suspect he
waa the one of the earliest victims of "requisitioning" in the American
military tradition.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

ELISHA HOUGHTON: 20 JUL 1746-18 NOV 1826

Yesterday, November 18th, was the 183 anniversary of my
5x great grandfather Elisha Houghton's death. He was born on
20 Jul 1746 in Lancaster, Worcester, Ma. and died on
18 Nov 1826(in perhaps Vt.)

Elisha is one of my Revolutionary War ancestors. He
enlisted at Harvard Ma as a Private in May of 1777 in the
Massachusetts militia and was at the Battles of Bunker Hill
and Stillwater. He then enlisted for three years in the infantry
company commanded by Captain Joshua Brown in Colonel
Timothy Bigelow's 15th Regiment of the Massachusetts line.
and took part in the Battles of Monmouth and Newport and
was at Valley Forge. He twice was promoted to Sergeant and
twice was busted back down to the ranks. I have a copy of
his pension request file and hope to eventually transcribe
and post it here.

On 30 Nov 1768 he married Meriah Peirce in Harvard, Worcester
Ma and they had four children. One of their grandaughters ,
Sally Houghton, married James Thomas Dunham, Jr., and that's how
I came to be related to Chris Dunham!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

"THE SHOT HEARD ROUND THE WORLD"

Thomas McEntee over at Destination:Austin Family asked
his fellow geneabloggers to join him in posting about our
Revolutionary War ancestors as a way to observe the 233
anniversary of the Battles of Concord and Lexington. These
are my direct ancestors who took part along with a few of
their siblings. Most of the information I have comes from
the Revolutionary War Pension Files images on Footnote.com
and my Barker cousins Howard Kappelin and Nancy Downey
helped sort out the Jonathan Barkers.

I'll have some more thoughts on these folks in the next post.
For now here's just the list:

Jonathan Barker Jr.
Was a Minuteman from Methuen Ma with rank of Sergeant.
He responded to Lexington and Concord with his sons
Served in Captain Samuel Johnson's Company in
Colonel Titcomb's Regiment for 2 months in 1777 in Rhode
Island and then with Nathaniel Gage's Company in Colonel
Jacob Gerrish's guards from Dec 1777 tol April 1778 guarding
the captured troops of General Burgoyne.


Jonathan Barker 3rd
Enlisted on 19 Apr 1775 in Continental Army, Capt. John
Davis' Company, Col. James Frye's Regiment, in the
Massachusetts line for 8 months in Cambridge, Ma. At the
conclusion of the term, he reenlisted for another 3 months in
Capt John Allen's Company, Colonel John Waldron's Regiment,
General Sullivan's Brigade in the New Hampshire Brigade at
Charlestown, Ma. He then enlisted a third time in June 1778
at Methuen, Ma., joining Captain Samuel Carr's Company, Col.
James Weston's Regiment, in General Lerned's Brigade at
White Plains, N.Y. and serving for another 9 months.


John Ames
Was a Minuteman under Capt. Asa Parker on April 18th,
1775. He then enlisted in the Continental Army under Captain
Oliver Parker, Col. William Prescott's Regiment and
in the Brigade that was commanded in turn by Generals
Putnam, Lee, and Washington and served for 8 1/2 months.
For a more detailed account of his service see my posts
about his Revolutionary War Pension File starting here.


Asa Barrows
A member of the militia from Middleborough , Ma. (south of
Boston) in the Company of Captain Joshua Benson, in Colonel
Cotton's Regiment, and General William Heath's Brigade for
8 months during the siege of Boston. In December 1776 he
joined a militia Company commanded by Captain Joshua
Perkins and marched to Barrington, R.I. and was stationed
there for 6 weeks. In July 1780 he again enlisted, this time
in a militia company commanded by Captain Perez Churchill
that marched to Tiverton, R.I. I posted about his
Revolutionary War Pension File starting here.


Moses Coburn
Moses Coburn got into the War late and by reason of being
"hired by a certain class of men in the then town of Dunstable
to go into the Continental Army in the summer of 1781."
When he reached Phillipsburgh in New York he was placed in
Captain Benjamin Pike's Company, in the Regiment of the
Massachusetts line commanded by Lt. Colonel Calvin Smith in
which he served for nearly two years until it was broken up.
He then transferred to the Company of Judah Alden in the
Regiment commanded by Colonel Sprouts until his discharge
in 1783.


Samuel Haskell
Samuel served in Captain Joseph Elliott's Company in Colonel
William Turner's Regiment and then under Captain Hezekiah
Whitney in Colonel Josiah Whitney's Regiment.


Amos Hastings
Amos was responded to the Lexington Alarm as part of
Captain Richard Ayer's Company and Colonel William
Johnson's Regiment. He later served in Captain Timothy
Eaton's Company in Colonel Edward Wigglesworth's Regiment
and was at the taking of the British General Burgoyne at
Ticonderoga.



Elisha Houghton
Enlisted at Harvard Ma as a Private in May of 1777in the
Massachusetts militia and was at the Battles of Bunker Hill
and Stillwater. He then enlisted for three years in the infantry
company commanded by Captain Joshua Brown in Colonel
Timothy Bigelow's 15th Regiment of the Massachusetts line.
and took part in the Battles of Monmouth and Newport and
was at Valley Forge. He twice was promoted to Sergeant and
twice was busted back down to the ranks.


Amos Upton
Responded to the Lexington Alarm and marched there from
his home in Reading. He later joined the militia company
commanded by Captain Asa Prince as an orderly sergeant
and then enlisted for eight months in the Continental Army
under Colonel Mansfield for 8 months. He was at the Battle
of Bunker Hill. He was discharged in October of 1775.


John Griffith
Enlisted in 1781 as a Matross (he swabbed out the barrel of
the cannons after they fired, or so I've been told) in Captain
William Treadwell's Company in Colonel John Crane's
Artillery Regiment.



Reuben Packard
A Sergeant in Captain Josiah Hayden's Company in Colonel
Bailey's militia. They marched to Lexington at news of the
Alarm. He also responded several more times as a Minuteman
for a total of nearly8 months duty.


Jonathan Abbot
Served as a Sergeant in the Militia under Captain Henry
Abbott and responded to the Lexington Alarm

Besides those direct ancestors, these other relatives fought
in the Revolution:

Moses Barrows, brother to Asa Barrows.

Samuel, Jesse, and Benjamin Barker, sons of Jonathan
Barker, Jr. and brothers to Jonathan Barker 3rd.

James Swan, brother in law to Jonathan Barker.


There may be more but that’s all I’ve found so far and I
don't know about John Cutter West's father or grandfathers
as yet.

Monday, January 21, 2008

WHERE THEY WERE IN 1808

After Lisa’s meme asking where our ancestors were in 1908,
Donna over at What’s Past is Prologue has taken it a step
further back and asks her fellow genealogy bloggers where
their ancestors were a century earlier in 1808!



Well, on my Mom’s side my brick walls are high. All I can say
with some certainty is that the McFarlands and Whites were
in Ireland and the Offlingers were in Germany.


On my father’s side the veterans of the Revolutionary War
had moved from Essex, Middlesex, and Plymouth counties
mostly to what would eventually become Oxford County in
northwestern Maine.

Jonathan Barker and his wife Nancy Swan were in Newry,
Maine along with at least three of Jonathan’s brothers:
Benjamin, Jesse and Symonds Epes Barker. Jonathan and
Nancy's son Nathaniel Barker would be turning 14 years old
that year.

Moses Coburn, his wife Esther Spaulding and their son
Westley Coburn (Wesley) were also in Newry


Nathaniel Barker’s future bride Hulda Hastings and her
parents Amos Hastings and Elizabeth Wiley were living in
Bethel, Me.


John Ellingwood and Zerviah Abbott and son John
Ellingwood Jr. likewise resided in Bethel.


Amos Upton and son Francis had settled in Norway, Me.
with their wives and families.


Moses Houghton and Martha Haskell had moved from
Western Massachusetts with Martha’s parents Mark Haskell
and Ruth Safford. Moses' father Elisha Houghton remained
behind in the town of Adams in Berkshire Co., Ma. Sally
Houghton was not born yet, but hermarriage would be one of
those that brought the families from northern Massachusetts
together with those from southern Massachusetts.


Philip Peirce Richardson and Lydia Dow were living in Bow,
Hillsboro, Nh where their youngest son was born in August
1808. Middle son Philip Richardson (Jr?) was around 9 years
old. His future wife’s parents John Laughton and Amata
Greenleaf were still teenagers living in Mercer, Me.


John Ames and Lydia Phelps had been in Canton, Oxford
Co., Me. for sometime now and their son Jonathan Phelps
Ames had married Mary “Polly” Griffith the year before.
Polly was the daughter of John Griffith and Mary Boyden
who’d moved to Oxford County from Windham County Vt,
but John was originally from Rochester, Plymouth County,
Ma.


James Dunham and his wife Cynthia Packard were also from
southern Massachusetts and were living in Hebron, Oxford
County, Me. Their son James Thomas Dunham was born
there in 1805 and he would marry Sally Houghton.

Asa Barrows and Content Benson had been among the
early settlers of Oxford County and daughter Rachel
Barrows
had been born there in 1795. Her marriage to John
Ellingwood Jr
. was the other meeting of my northern and
southern Massachusetts ancestors.


As to my ancestor, the Elusive John Cutter West, he was 6
years old and ….well… somewhere in Plymouth County…

…being elusive.