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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thankful Thursday: Dreaming of Answers to Questions on the War of 1812

It's been a long hard road to where we are now.  Just think of how our ancestors lived in this frigid weather without benefit of the newscasters telling them how bad it was!

Seriously, the road our ancestors took was a hard one and I am so thankful for what they endured so I can sit in my toasty warm house and spend countless hours online looking for that elusive answer to the questions that swim around in my head.

I am still trying to determine what happened to those "St Clair Boys" of the War of 1812.  Someone suggested I spend some time on Fold3 where they just happen to have the pension files for those wonderful veterans of old.  Too bad for me as they only have the documents uploaded for the first 13 letters of the alphabet (that's "M" for those who have to count it out on their fingers.)  And to make it even more fun, most of them did not serve long enough to be eligible for pensions and then they had the nerve to die by 1820.

I know the St Clair Boys were under the command of James TURBETT so I went to see what I could see... and this is what I have found so far....

Muster Rolls of the Pennsylvania Volunteers in the War of 1812
Company commanded by Captain James TURBETT from St Clare Twp and attached to the 2nd Regiment of Infantry commanded by Lieut. Col. John Purvinse (PURVIANCE) commanded by Brigadier Gen'l Adamson TANEHILL of the 1st Brigade of PA Volunteers

Date of enlistment:  Sept 12, 1812
Time of engagement:  March 25, 1813
Discharged Dec 18, 1812

Marched to Meadville, the place of rendezvous  and march from Buffalo
Note: The troops marched to Meadville where they were put under the command of John PURVIANCE  of Butler, PA, in September.  Unfortunately, they were held in Meadville until November due to their firearms being defective. Can you imagine their frustration?  General Mead had sent the call out to the area to defend their state back in the late summer of 1812. These chaps volunteered and then sat for about 6 weeks or so doing nothing for the cause. More on this tomorrow.

James Turbett               Capt
George Cochran        Lieut
Nath'l Pearson            Insign
James Sibett            Sergt
Sam's Simmons        Sergt    deserted(Buffalo)
James Turner            Sergt    deserted(Buffalo)
Wm Ramsey            Sergt
Lewis McFarland        Corp'l
Chas Rigdon            Corp'l
Isaac Elliott            Corp'l
Ebenezer Pearson        Corp'l
John Maxwel            Privit
Arch'd Gilkeson        Privit
David Jewel            Privit
Thos Black            Privit
Jno Sinclear            Privit    deserted
Arch'd Allison            Privit
Thos Mathews        Privit    deserted
Jos Gooshorn            Privit
Wm Sinclear            Privit    deserted
Jno Turner                    deserted
David Kennedy
Wm McCleran (McClaren)
Nath'l Eastep (Eastop)
Geo Vonn
Jno McCallister                deserted
Hugh McKean
Thos Parker
Thos Henry
John Andrews                    deserted
Eben Kerr
Wm Cochran
Hugh Menis

Another source calls the group the Hunting Shirt Rifle Company. An 1873 affadavit of Samuel PEARSON, a younger brother of one of the men in TURBETT'S company recalled "At the time, there was much excitement about the War of 1812, and Nathaniel and his brother Ebenezer enlisted in the Hunting Shirt Rifle Company led by Captain James Turbett (1st Regiment, Pennsylvania Militia) shortly after Nathaniel's wedding. Samuel relates: "My mother & sisters filled a pretty large contract of making Linen Jackets and knapsacks for the Company. (I remember) the departure of the Co. for the seat of war. They passed my grandfather's house, and being at school a few rods distant, school was dismissed, and with the other scholars I ran and climbed upon a board fence to see the soldiers pass." Nathaniel, an Ensign, served a three-month term. His second child was named Oliver Hazard Perry Pearson in honor of the Battle of Lake Erie (1813) hero."

The pension file for Thomas (McMillan)  HENRY is boring at best, although it did provide a marriage date and location of his marriage.

War of 1812 Pension File
Svc: Capt James Torbett’s Co PA Militia
Enlisted Sept 25, 1812
Discharged Dec 31, 1812
1850, 1855 Lawrence Co PA
1872 New Wilmington, Lawrence, PA
Maiden name of widow:  Eliza Clark
Marriage:  Jan 13, 1818 Burgettstown, Washington, PA
Death of Soldier:  Sept 15, 1873 New Wilmington, PA
Bounty Land:
77608 40 50
40971 120-55

In looking at the names of the roster, I know I am by blood related to three of them, marriage related to at least two, and am familiar with the families of a number of them.  Some of them are buried at my family cemetery (aka the old St Clair Cemetery in Mt Lebanon, Allegheny, PA.)

Ahhh, genealogy. So thankful for these men who volunteered to protect their homeland.

Muster Rolls of the PA Volunteers: in the War of 1812-1814, edited by Thomas Lynch Montgomery, pg 729.
St Clair Cemetery Profile on Nathaniel P PEARSON
Fold3 1812 pension file on Thomas M HENRY
War of 1812, The Second Revolution by Rainier Chapter, NSDAR, pg 71,

©2015 ASEldredge

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