Whately — The War Of The Revolution
Extracted from "History of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts, Volume II," by Louis H. Everts, 1879.
The training in warfare which these men received was turned to good account in the War Of The Revolution which so soon followed. The people early took a deep interest in the impending contest, and were among the first to respond to the alarm of danger at the threatened destruction of their liberties. In reply to the circular of the "Boston Committee of Correspondence and Inquiry," which called attention to the "rights of the colonists and the infringement thereon," the town forwarded the following letter, which was prepared by Edward Brown, Elisha Frary, and Joseph Belding, Jr., and approved by a meeting held in the spring of 1773:
"GENTLEMEN,—The proceedings of the town of Boston under the present exigencies, we esteem very laudable and worthy of a metropolis. We concur in general with your sentiments in stating the rights of the colonists and province, and of the infringements of these rights. We hold fast loyally to our sovereign; yet we groan under our burden, but do not despair of redress. If the importunity of a poor widow may move an unjust judge to avenge her, how much more may we hope for redress by frequent application to a gracious king! We shall at all times heartily join with you in all legal and constitutional measures for the keeping of those inestimable privileges wrested from us, and firmly to secure those that remain. For we are sensible that, should we renounce our liberty and privileges, we should renounce the rights of man, the rights of humanity, and even our duty to God and man. We have no doubts but that the Parliament of Great Britain will hereby understand that 'tis not the discontentedness of a faction, but that the whole people are sensible of the burdens they labor under."
The people of Whately conformed themselves to the spirit of the above, and discarded many things of foreign production, becoming more reliant and independent, while the preparations for possible resistance to usurped power went on. In 1774, Oliver Graves was chosen deputy to attend the Provincial Congress to be held at Concord in October; Elisha Frary was a delegate to the second Congress, at Cambridge, in February, 1775; and Noah Wells and Salmon White attended the third Congress, at Watertown, in May of the same year.
In the fall of 1774 a company of "Minute-Men" was organized; and, at a meeting in December, it was
"Voted to provide one hundred weight of lead and two hundred flints for the use of the town."
In January following it was
"Voted to raise money for the Minute-Men."
"Voted that the Minute-Men be allowed 8d. for each half-day spent; to the sergeants, 10d., to the lieutenants, 12d."
"Voted that the Minute-Men train four half-days between this and the 1st of May next."
Oliver Graves, Benjamin Smith, Oliver Morton, Joshua Belding, John Smith, Elisha Frary, and Paul Smith were the committee of correspondence in 1775.
The news of the battle of Lexington reached Whately late on the 20th of April, and early the next morning the Minute-Men marched, and after having proceeded forty miles, being told they were not needed, returned home, reaching it on the 23d
The company was composed of the following:
Capt., Henry Stiles; Lieut., Noah Bardwell; Sergts., John Lamson, John Brown; privates, Thomas Sanderson, Paul Belding, Ebenezer Bardwell, Jr., John Wait, Simeon Wells, Ebenezer Dickinson, Niles Coleman, Roswell Smith, Benjamin Smith, Joel Wait, Daniel Wells, Salmon White, Edward Brown, David Ingraham.
Besides these, a number of the citizens belonged to companies in the adjoining towns, and were also out from two to thirty days. In Capt. Perez Graves' Hatfield company were:
Sergt., Silas Smith; privates, Gideon Dickinson, Gains Crafts, Jacob Mosher, John Smith, Benjamin Smith, Jonathan Edson, Joel Wait, Elisha Smith.
In Capt. Israel Chapin's company (Col. Fellows' regiment) were:
Lieut., Perez Bardwell; Sergts., Nathaniel Sartle, Joseph Belding, Jr.; Corp., Abel Scott; Drummer, Phineas Frary; Fifer, Eleazar Frary; privates, Zenas Field, Josiah Brown, David Morton, Abel Bacon, Simeon Morton, John Crafts, Joseph Crafts, Noah Field, Selah Graves, John Sanderson, Joel Scott, Solomon Snow, Elijah Scott, Elisha Smith, Elisha Wait.
In Capt. Jonas Locke's Deerfield company were Oliver Shattuck, John Locke, Adonijah Taylor, Jonathan Spafford.
In Capt. Seth Murray's Hatfield company were in service from April 29th till August 25th Joel and Reuben Dickinson, Caleb Beals, Jonathan Edson, Elisha Wells, and Jacob Walker.
Ebenezer Bardwell was in the Sunderland company.
The Whately men engaged at the battle of Bunker Hill were Elisha Wells, Jonathan Spafford, Jonathan Edson, Sr., and Jonathan Edson, Jr.
he action of the town throughout the Revolution was in harmony with the patriotic spirit of its citizens. On the 6th of July, 17%, before the news of the Declaration of Independence had been received, it was voted, in a special meeting,
"That in case the Continental Congress shall declare the colonies to be in an independent state from Great Britain, we will support the declaration with our lives and fortunes."
Before this meeting was held,—probably in June, 1776,—Ebenezer Dickinson, Joseph Crafts, Joel Morton, Samuel G. Morton, Phineas Scott, Elijah Scott, Luther Scott, Philo Bacon, and Asa Sanderson were enlisted to march against Canada, receiving a bounty of £7 from the State; and the town "voted £54 for their encouragement."
Other men who enlisted in that year to fill the town's quota, or who served in 1776, were:
Bernice Snow, Ebenezer Bardwell, Jr., Solomon Snow, Zeph. Snow, Oliver Train, Henry Jones, Joab Bragg, John Hawley, Edward Brown, Abel Bacon, Thomas Harrington, Joab Belding, Bezaleel Phelps, Samuel Blackman, Amos Fuller, Oliver Morton, Adna Smith, William Brown, Benjamin Parker, Phineas Smith, Bezaleel Smith, Abraham Parker, Mathew Graves, James Sanderson, Aaron Pratt, Elisha Smith, Julius Frary, and others.
In 1777 a company of 57 men, under Capt. Salmon White, was at Ticonderoga several months. Those from Whately were:
Elisha Smith, Abijah Brown, Samuel Coleman, Zenas Field, Joel Morton, Elijah Scott, Perez Wells, Moses Crafts, Philo Bacon, Richard Carey, John Lamson, Samuel G. Morton, Joseph Scott, Simeon Wells, Reuben Crafts, Jehu Dickinson, Jacob A. Faxon, Benjamin Parker, Abel Scott.
David Stockbridge was a corporal in the Northern army from May 7th to July 8th: Capt. Seth Murray's company, when it marched to Fort Edward, July 9 to Aug. 12, 1777, had the following Whately men:
Lieuts., Thomas Sanderson, Noah Bardwell Sergts., John Wait, Noah Field, privates, Elisha Wells, Abraham Turner, Daniel Morton, Levi Morton, Joel Wait, Jonathan Edson, Elihu Wait, Seth Frary, Lemuel Wells, Simeon Morton, David Morton, Jacob Walker, Reuben Graves, Josiah Brown, Elijah Smith, Paul Belding, Graves Crafts, Selah Graves, John Graves, Selah Scott, Roswell Smith, Ebenezer Scott, Paul Belding, Jr., David Ingraham.
A number of Whately men were in readiness to march at the order of Gen. Gates, Aug. 17, 1777, but only Paul Gibbs, Moses Crafts, Phineas Scott, and Simeon Wells served any length of time in the Northern army.
On the 20th of September, 1777, the Whately company of militia went to Saratoga, remaining until October 14th of that year. The muster-roll contained the names of
Capt., Salmon White; Lieuts., Thomas Sanderson, Noah Bardwell; Sergts., Lemuel Wells, John Crafts, Eleazer Frary, Martin Graves; Corps., Ebenezer Bardwell, Elijah Scott, Elisha Wells privates, Joseph Kellogg, Ebenezer Dickinson, Gad Smith, Joshua Belding, Philo Bacon, Adna Smith, Nathan Graves, Jr., Phineas Smith, Reuben Crafts, John Smith, Russell Allis, Jonathan Smith, Gad Scott, Elisha Smith, Abijah Brown, Levi Handy, David Ingraham, Oliver Graves, Asa Sanderson, Nathan Graves, Benjamin Bacon, Samuel G. Morton, Ezra Turner, Joel Wait.
Other Whately men at Saratoga were:
David Morton, Zenas Field, Seth Frary, James Sanderson, Elisha Smith, Caleb Beals, John Sanderson, Lucius Allis, Simeon Graves, Timothy Shattuck, Abel Allis, William Brown, Abraham Parker, Ebenezer Bardwell, Jr., Stephen Keyes.
In 1778 the men enlisted wore:
Nathaniel Dickinson, Jonathan Edson, Abel Scott, Nathaniel Sartle, Philo Bacon, Benjamin Parker, Isaac Sanderson, David Ingraham, Seth Wright.
A number of levies were made in 1779, and the town
"Voted to allow three men, that will engage nine months in the Continental army, 40s. per month, with the addition of the bounty and mileage allowed by the General Court."
On the 19th of October it was voted "to raise two thousand four hundred pounds for soldiers gone and going into the army." Besides those in service a short time at New London, Conn., the enlisted men in this year were Samuel G. Morton, Gardner Marcy, Simeon Wells, Joseph Scott, Abijah Harding, Allen Faxon, Dr. Perez Chapin, and others.
Jan. 6, 1780, the town chose a committee to settle with the men that went to New London and those that went to Claverack.
May 11th it was voted to give notes on interest to those soldiers to whom the town is indebted.
A liberal bounty to volunteers was also voted, and Benjamin Scott, Jr., offered to give a bonus of $700 to seven soldiers who should enlist. This was paid to Abel Scott, Oliver Graves, Graves Crafts, Philo Bacon, Salmon White, Jr., Amasa Edson, Abijah Brown, who enlisted for six months. Paul Harvey, Bezaleel Smith, Elijah Smith enlisted for three months. William Giles. and Stephen Orcutt enlisted in the Continental army.
In August, 1780, the town voted to raise £3600 to provide beef for the army, and appointed Elisha Frary, Salmon White and Perez Chapin a purchasing committee; and in September "it was voted to raise one hundred and twenty-seven pounds, in silver money, to pay the soldiers that the town is indebted to for service done or doing in the army."
In addition to those already named, the Whately men in service in 1780 were Reuben Crafts, Reuben Graves, John Wallis, Samuel McIntire, Moses Crafts, John Brown, Jonathan Bacon, and Henry Green.
In 1781 the town paid £293 7s., in silver, bounty to Jonathan Bacon, Bernice Snow, Stephen Keyes, and Gershom Keyes, and a smaller bounty to Asa Crafts.
Among others who enlisted in this year were Abel Scott, Elisha Belding, Oliver Shattuck, Abial Harding, Abel Bacon, and Abraham Parker.
Among those who had served in the Revolutionary army and became settlers after the war were Josiah Gibert, Nathan Harwood, Francis Harwood, and Joseph Barnard.
No official mention is made of Shays' rebellion, but Capt. Shattuck, Capt. Brown, John Taylor, and Nathaniel Coleman are remembered as having been friendly to that movement. A citizen of Whately, Jacob Walker, was killed at Bernardston, while aiding in the arrest of Capt. Jason Parmenter, a leader of the disaffected men. He was buried in Hatfield.