One of the reasons I love genealogy is just when you think you’ve found it all, up pops something you never expected to find. While looking over the documents on http://www.fold3.com yesterday, I came across this pension application for John Button. What was surprising was that there was a letter in his application (see below) that was written by Randall Wells himself.
What I find odd about his letter in support of the application of John Button is that he says that John wasn’t in the Militia but enlisted in the regular Army. From the tone of the letter, I’m guessing he wouldn’t get a pension for just being in the Hopkinton Militia. The problem is, John was in the Militia. He was listed along with Randall as being in the Second Hopkinton Militia roll that I posted just yesterday. Who knows, maybe he was in both the Militia and the regular Army. I’d prefer to think that than to think Randall was stretching the truth.
Here’s Randall’s letter and the transcription below. Again I have (?) or xx’s denoting words I’m either not sure of or just wasn’t able to make out the handwriting of at all.
Came before me one of the Justices of the Piece for the town of Hopkinton in the County of Washington and State of Rhode Island – George Thurston Esquire of Hopkinton in said County of Washington of aged about Seventy Six years and on oath said he has been acquainted and lived in the same town and neighbor to John Button, Samuel Button + James Phillips and their family as they all belong to Hopkinton and been acquainted with them from their youth as to this time, and that he was knowing to the said John Button, Samuel Button, James Phillips all of Hopkinton Enlisting into the Army in the Revolutionary War and that they the said John, Samuel and James was absent from home for years and further remembers of their coming out of the Army towards or at the close of the war, and they was clad in the United Sates clothing remembering (?) the trimmings Button of that was on their clothes, the town of Hopkinton being located within one mile of the Connecticut line they enlisted under officers of the Revolution that lived in that state apart or all of them / and further that he was active in assisting to raise troops for the army was concerned in classes(?) when we were classes of to raise class of man and that he served many tours in the Malitia as a Captain and that the said John, Samuel and James was not in the Malitia as has been inserted on some of their applications Returned but that they were enlisted soldiers in the Revolutionary War and on the Continental Establishment, as I accepted (?) as they was a long time from home – further that they are very poor and very ignorant xxxx Remember as particular as to the service rendered as many do, the officers and soldiers whom they serve with are many of them Dead, and other emigrated to the Western Country which makes it almost impossible for them in their helpless situation to make the proof required – John Button and James Phillips application I understand is made before the Secretary of the War Department, Samuel Buttons Application has been returned, with the indication that he perform Militia duty only which must be a mistake, and from my knowing and being well acquainted with the various kinds of services rendered by officers and soldiers at the time as XXXX Malitia, State Service and Continental Service, the said John, Samuel and James did enlist into the Regular Army of the United States and was absent for a long time and I have not the least doubt, on the Continental Establishment, and I do recommend them to his Honor the Secretary of the War Department fair Claimants xxx within the manning of the Act of Congress of the 18th day of march 1818 making provision for the officers and soldiers of the Revolutionary War who are in Indigent Circumstances.
Pasonally affirmed the xxx George Thurston xxx George Thurston of the 2 Day of February 1819 and made solemn oath to the above and within xxxx xxx or deposition
Randal Wells Justice Peace
Here is the Pension paperwork of James Stansbury mentioning Captain Randall Wells of Hopkinton.
In order to obtain the act of Congress, passed June 7, 1832.
State of Rhode Island County of Washington
On this 4th day of September 1832 personally appeared in open court, before Judges or Justices of the Court of (Crossed out) now sitting, James Stanbury – – a resident of Hopkinton in the county of Washington and State of Rhode Island, aged 79 years, who being first duly sworn to law, doth on his oath make the following declaration, in order to obtain the Act of Congress passed June 7, 1832.
That he entered the service of the United States under the following named officers, and served as herein stated
Was born in the town of Hopkinton February 1759. We have no other XXXX But our family XXX, XXX always lived in said Hopkinton before and since the Revolution. Entered the service of the Revolution 1776 a substitute for one Jonathan Rogers. Went on the shores of Point Judith and Boston Neck Long Island Sound under Capt George Thurston, Col Jesse Maxson Three months then was drafted west under Capt Randall Wells. I don’t recollect whether Col Maxson or Noyes Command. Served X months I xxx went as a substitute for my brother John Stanbury. Went to New London State of Connecticut. Was in and about Fort Trumbull and the shores of Long Island Sound. Served six months under Capt Christopher Brown – Then I went a substitute for John Williams and served three months in Fort Griswold on Groton Bank. My time was xxx xxx before the xxx of Col Ledyard xxxx Capt William Lathom – Then afterward served as a substitute for a Mr. Homes in Fort Griswold under Capt Hull. Served one month.
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 the Agency of any State.