Ebenezer FOSTER (1709 – 1749) was Alex’s 7th Grandfather; one of 256 in this generation of the Shaw line.
Ebenezer Foster was born 20 Aug 1709 in Dorchester, Mass. He had a twin, Robert of which nothing more is known. His parents were Maj. John FOSTER and Margaret WARE. He married Desire CUSHMAN on 17 Sep 1730 in Attleboro, Mass.. Ebenezer died from consumption 18 Jun 1749 in Cumberland, Providence, RI.
Desire Cushman was born 18 Sep 1710 in Plympton, Mass. Her parents were Samuel CUSHMAN and Fear CORSER. After Ebenezer died, she married John Allen of Bristol County. Desire died 27 Nov 1810 in Attleboro, Bristol, Mass when she was a hundred years old! – Over 60 years after Ebenezer had passed.
“In memory of Mrs. Desire Allen, Relict of Mr. John Allen
(formerly the wife of Mr. Ebenezer Foster), who died November
27, 1810, aged 100 years 1 month and 28 days.
“Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, for they
rest from their labors and their works do follow them.”
John Allen, wife Christian, was of Swansea and earlier of Rehoboth. He d. May 3, 1690. Will dated Mar 12, 1689, he being in his 80th year, proved May 27, 1690 (See Vol. iii Register) in which he mentions his wife Christian. On p. 230 Vol ii Plymouth Deeds in the Archives Division of the Mass. State House at Boston, there is under date of Sept 1, 1659, an interesting undertaking given by Wm Buckland to give his son Joseph, certain property upon his marriage to Deborah Allen. John Allen’s will recorded on p 19 of the first book of Bristol County, Mass., Probate Records.
Children of Ebenezer and Desire:
|1.||Huldah Foster||21 Sep 1731 Attleboro, Mass.||Ebenezer Cheever
8 Jan 1755 Wrenham, Norfork, Mass
|16 Nov 1811 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass|
|2.||Mercy Foster||19 Jun 1733||20 Jun 1733|
|3.||Mercy Foster||22 May 1734||Solomon Peck
14 Jun 1756
|25 Jul 1806 Wrentham, Mass.|
|4.||Fear Foster||24 Feb 1736||26 Feb 1736|
|5.||Fear Foster||9 Mar 1737||Oliver Peck
22 Apr 1759 Cumberland, Providence, RI
|Herkimer, New York|
|6.||Ebenezer Foster||9 Apr 1739 Attleboro||18 Jun 1749 Cumberland, Providence, RI|
|7.||Jemima Foster||6 Jul 1741 Attleboro||Benjamin Taylor
ca 1763 Verplanck Point [outside Peekskill], Westchester Co, NY.
|Fishkill, Dutchess, New York|
|8.||Samuel FOSTER||14 Jun 1743||Leah EVERY (Avery)
22 Nov 1764 in Fishkill, Dutchess, NY
|7 Apr 1825 Livermore, Androscoggin, Maine|
|9.||Desire Foster||10 Jun 1745 Attleboro, Mass.||Aug 1745 Attleboro, Mass.|
|10.||Desire Foster||12 Aug 1746 Attleboro, Mass.||Nathaniel Metcalf
Maj. Abijah Draper
5 Mar 1778 Attleboro, Mass.
|23 Oct 1815 Dedham, Mass.|
|11.||Bartholomew Foster||Sep 1748 Attleboro, Mass||Nov 1748 Attleboro, Mass|
|12.||Bartholomew Foster||Sep 1749 Attleboro, Ma||Mary [_?_]||Oct 1775 Revolutionary, War Siege, Quebec, Canada|
Ebenezer lived in Wrentham Mass, Cumberland Rhode Island and Attleboro, Mass. He was a blacksmith like his father.
In 1747, Ebenezer Foster of Attleboro, and Desire, his wife, conveyed land at Attleboro (Bristol, XXIII. 317).
In the probate records of Valley Falls, Rhode Island is found:
Major John Foster father of Ebenezer Foster appeared before the court regarding the appointment of an administrator upon the estate of said Ebenezer, deceased June 18, 1747 and widow Desire Foster and Benjamin Day of Attleboro were appointed
1. Huldah Foster
Huldah’s husband Ebenezer Cheever was born 3 Mar 1731 in Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass. His parents were James Cheever and Melatiah Metcalfe. Ebenezer died 27 Aug 1815 in Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass
Children of Huldah and Ebenezer:
i. Timothy Cheever b. 30 Apr 1756 Wrentham Norfolk, Mass.; d. 8 Sep 1806 Wrentham; Burial: Gerrould Cemetery, Wrentham; m. 6 Nov 1786 – Attleborough to Phebe Guild (b. 24 Apr 1753 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass. – d. 12 Apr 1836 Wrentham; Burial: Gerrould Cemetery, Wrentham). Phebe’s parents were Ebenezer Guild and Phebe Day.
Cheever, Timothy. Private, Capt. Lemuel Kollock’s co., Col. Whe****lock’s regt., which marched from Wrentham to Warwick, R.I., on the alarm of Dec. 8, 1776; service, 11 days.
Cheever, Timothy. Private, Capt. Joseph Lovell’s (Independent) co. drafted from 4th regt; service, 22 days; stationed at Warwick, R. I., Dec. 29, 1776. Roll dated Medway.
ii. Samuel Cheever b. 15 Feb 1758 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 15 Feb 1758 Wrentham.
iii. Chloe Cheever b. 1 Feb 1759 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 30 Jan 1793 Wrentham
iv. Olive Cheever b. 14 Mar 1761 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 30 Jan 1791 Wrentham
v. Oliver Cheever b. 10 Apr 1763 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 5 Mar 1776, Wrentham
vi. Lucy Cheever b. 10 Apr 1765 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 14 Aug 1793 Wrentham
vii. Margaret Cheever b. 16 Jun 1767 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 15 Jul 1829 Wrentham; m. 29 Jun 1794 to William Hopkins
viii. James Cheever b. 2 Nov 1769 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 22 Nov 1853 Wrentham; m. Sarah Ware (b. 12 Jun 1770 Wrentham – d. 19 Apr 1849 Wrentham) Sarah’s parents were Ichabod Ware (1728 – 1810) and Marcy Stearns (1730 – 1805).
In the 1850 census, James was living in Wrentham with Susan Sternes (54) and Sally Sternes (45).
ix. Cynthia Cheever b. 28 Oct 1771 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.; d. 24 Apr 1776 Wrentham
x. Cyrus Cheever b. 13 Mar 1775 Wrentham, Mass.; d. 27 Jun 1855 Montrose, Susquehanna, PA; Burial: Montrose Cemetery; m. 2 Dec 1796 in Attleboro, Mass. to Lydia Guild (b. 19 Oct 1777 in Attleboro, Mass. – d. 9 Jul 1868 Montrose) Lydia’s parents were Joseph Guild (b. 1716) and Elizabeth Thayer (b. 1700). Cyrus and Lydia had four children born between 1797 and 1810.
3. Mercy Foster
Mercy’s husband Solomon Peck was born 19 Apr 1733 in Attleboro, Bristol, Mass. His parents were Ichabod Peck (1691 – 1773) and Judith Paine (1695 – 1778). Solomon died 31 Dec 1802 in Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass.
Early in life he settled in the southwestern part of Wrentham, Mass. Contemporary records show him to have been a wealthy gentleman farmer, a man of distinction and influence in the community.
Children of Mercy and Solomon
i. Levi Peck b. 14 Apr 1757 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass; d. 17 Sep 1835 Westminster, Windham, Vermont; Burial: Old Westminster Cemetery; m. 27 Dec 1785 to Hannah Stodard (b. 1760 in Westminster, Vermont – d. 18 Feb 1842 Burial: Old Westminster Cemetery) Levi and Hannah had four children born between 1798 and 1802.
Levi was a Revolutionary War Patriot. Served in two companies of militia of Westminster, 1780; Sargent-Major Mar 3, 1784; served about 3 years in Massachusetts and Rhode Island before going to Vermont.
ii. Royal Peck b. 13 Jun 1759 Wrentham, Norfork, Mass.; d. 20 Sep 1849 Wrentham, Norfork, Mass; m. Abigail Ballou (b. 7 Sep 1761 in Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island – d. 6 Jun 1846 in Cumberland) Abigail’s sister Keziah married Royal’s brother Joel. Their parents were Noah Ballou (1728 – 1807) and Abigail Razee (1726 – 1794) Royal and Abigail had four children born between 1781 and 1805.
iii. Joel Peck b. 9 Apr 1761 Cumberland,Providence, Rhode Island; d. 24 Nov 1794 Cumberland, Rhode Island; m. 15 Feb 1784 in Ellington, CT to Keziah Ballou (b. 6 Dec 1757 in Cumberland – d. 18 May 1847 in Cumberland) Keziah’s sister Abigail married Joel’s brother Royal. Their parents were Noah Ballou (1728 – 1807) and Abigail Razee (1726 – 1794)
iv. Mercy Peck b. 28 Apr 1765; d. 4 Sep 1775
v. Lois Peck b. 3 May 1767; d. 11 Apr 1773
vi. Solomon Peck b. 28 Jul 1769; d. 29 Aug 1854 Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island; Burial: Quaker Cemetery, Cumberland; m. 1790 to Philadelphia Whipple (b. 25 Apr 1776 in Cumberland, Rhode Island – d. 9 Mar 1861 in Cumberland) Philadelphia’s parents were Preserved Whipple and Olive Ballou. Solomon and Philadelphia had eight children born between 1791 and 1810.
In the 1850 census, Solomon and Phila were living in Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island
vii. Darius Peck b. 22 Mar 1775 Wrentham, Norfolk, Mass; m. Lucy [__?__]
viii. Jesse Foster Peck b. 2 Apr 1777 Wrentham, Mass; d. 26 Nov 1822 Peck Cemetery, Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island; m1. 1800 to Anna Cole (b. 1781 – d. 1818);
m2. 16 Feb 1820 to Matilda Tingley (b. 15 Jun 1780 in Attleboro, Bristol, Mass – d. 16 Oct 1821 in Pelham, Hampshire, Mass) Matilda’s parents were Samuel Tingley and Rebekah Cushman.
3. Fear Foster
Fear’s husband Oliver Peck was born 5 Feb 1737 Attleborough, Bristol, Mass. His parents were Ichabod Peck (1691 – 1773) and Judith Paine (1695 – 1778). Oliver died Jun 1796 Norway, Herkimer, New York.
Fear and Oliver had nine children. He first moved to Fishkill in Dutchess County, NY, where he enlisted in the Revolutionary war. After that he moved to Herkimer County, NY, via the Hudson and Mohawk rivers. His will is at the Herkimer court house and he may have been buried in the Norway cemetery. Perhaps he was given land in Norway, NY on the edge of the Adirondacks, as payment for his military service. Most of his offspring left the area, the winters are harsh and the growing season short.
Children of Fear and Oliver
i. Nancy Peck b. 25 Nov 1759 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass; m. 2 Dec 1783 in New York to Stephen Ketcham (b. 26 Aug 1761 in Huntington, Suffolk, New York – d. 1798 in New York) Nancy and Stephen had six children born between 1784 and 1798.
ii. Oliver Peck b. 22 Nov 1761 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.
It is said he resided in 1814 in Cobbleskill New York and had two daughters.
iii. Joseph Peck b. 13 Nov 1763 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass. d. 1840 Herkimer, New York; m. 5 Jun 1788 in West Winfield, Columbia, New York to Phebe Vincent (b. 1767 in Northampton, Hampshire, Mass. – d. 1849 in New York) Phebe’s parents were Charles Vincent and Phebe [__?__] Joseph and Phebe had eleven children born between 1790 and 1812.
iv. Foster Peck b. 20 Dec 1765 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. Nov 1849 Ithaca, Tompkins, New York; m1. Rachel Willsee (b. 1765 in Fishkill, Herkimer, New York – d. 1808 in Dover, Dutchess, New York); m2. 1808 to Mrs. Patience Lodes (b. 1764 New Jersey – d. 1860 in Corning, New York) Foster and Rachel had eight children.
Foster lived in Fishkill, Dover and Ithaca, New York.
In the 1860 census, Patience was living with John Peck in Corning, Steuben, New York.
v. Amos Peck b. 16 May 1768 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. 15 Apr 1845 Saratoga, New York;Burial: Wagman-Peck Cemetery, Saratoga Springs m. 12 Mar 1793 in New York to Mary Wagman (b. 16 May 1768 in Saratoga, New York – d. 14 Sep 1853 Saratoga, New York) Mary’s parents were Henry Wagman (1730 – 1812) and Mary Wright (1735 – 1770) and [__?__]. Amos and Mary had eight children between 1795 and 1812.
After 1806, Amos and Mary moved with their growing family to be near her older sister, Sarah Stafford, near Staffords Bridge, Saratoga.
Amos’ father-in-law Henry Wagman was born 1730 in Zurich and came to New York State in 1760 with a sister. When he emigrated, Swiss law permitted no money to leave the country. Apparently he was given money by friends either on leaving or arriving because he was able to purchase land in Dutchess County. Amos’ mother-in-law Mary Wright was born in Germany.
Amos operated the farm at Wagman’s Ridge in Saratoga Springs, NY.
His son Amos was executor of his will as follows: Saratoga County: I, Amos Peck (a son), of the town of Saratoga in said county being duly sworn says that Amos Peck died on the 15th day of April instant that at the time of his and for several years previous to this he was an inhabitant of the town of Saratoga aforesaid. That he left a widow to wit Mary Peck who resides in said town of Saratoga, two sons to wit this deponent who resides in said town and Henry W. Peck who resides in Northumberland, six daughters to wit Mary Peck and Clarinda Haight wife of Hiram Haight both of whom reside in said town of Saratoga, Nancy Peck Bard, wife of Samuel Bard and Rachel Peck Buel wife of Horace Buel in the town of Columbia, Herkimer County. Lucinda Peck Goddard wife of Nathaniel Goddard who resides in Centre Almond, Allegheny County and Betsey Peck Clark wife of Simon Clark who resides at Grand Rapids, Michigan. His only heirs and with of him that all of said persons are proved of said deceased left a last will and testament dated March 29, 1845 relating to the real and personal estate in which Hiram height and Henry Wagman of the town of Saratoga aforesaid are named as executors.
Subscribed and sworn before me Apr 25, 1845 Signed: Amos Peck
Signed: John W. Thompson
In the 1850 census, Mary was living with her son Amos in Saratoga, Saratoga, New York.
vi. Ira Peck b. 15 Oct 1771 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. 4 May 1864 Owasso, Shiawassee, Michigan; Burial: Oak Hill Cemetery, Owosso; m. 1798 to Lydia Palmer (b. 1786 in West Stockbridge, Berkshire, Mass. – d. 22 Jul 1865 Owosso, Shiawassee, Michigan) Lydia’s parents were Caleb Palmer and Sarah [__?__]. Ira and Lydia had nine children born between 1799 and 1818.
vii. Lewis Peck b. 17 Dec 1773 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. Feb 1853 Ellenville, Ulster, New York; m. Ann Marie Potter Lewis and Ann Marie had eight children.
viii. Eli Peck b. 23 Jan 1776 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. Feb 1854 Pine Grove, Russell, Warren, Pennsylvania; Burial: Pine Grove Cemetery; m. 1804 to Huldah Chase (b. 9 Sep 1782 in Little Compton, Newport, Rhode Island – d. 1870 Warren, Pennsylvania) Huldah’s parents were Eleazer Chase and Elizabeth Ellis.
Eli first settled in Schoharie County, N.Y. From there he removed to Tully, Onondaga County, about 1794, where he resided for twenty-five years; when he removed to Pine Grove, Warren County, Pa., where he died in February 1854.
ix. Mary “Polly” Peck b. 23 Jan 1778 Attleboro, Bristol, Mass.; d. 13 Oct 1853 Wingdale, Dutchess, New York; m. Silas Ellsworth (b. 1775 Pawling Dutchess. New York – d. 6 Dec 1855 Pawling) Silas’ parents were Jonathan Aylesworth (1729 – bef. 1819) and Sarah [__?___].
Polly’s married name is spelled Elesworth on her stone which in earlier ancestral records is Aylesworth. Her stone also says she lived 76 years 7 months and 10 days. In the Settlers of the Beekman Patent – Vol.10, “Silas Aylesworth’s wife was at the Gage & Titus general store 27 June 1809 and purchased a number of items, including a pair of cards, Callico, flannel and raisons. She was crdited with bringing 15 pounds of butter to the store, for which she was credited 15 shillings 5 pence. Nancy* Peck, probably her cousin, was at the store the same day and her purchases of rum & sundries were offset by the butter Polly Peck Ayesworth had brought to the store.”
*Nancy Peck would actually have been Polly’s niece, born about 1790, the daughter of Polly’s older brother Foster. Or her older brother, Amos Peck, also had a daughter Nancy born 1795.
5. Jemima Foster
Jemima’s husband Benjamin Taylor was born in Yorktown, Westchester Co, NY ca 1736. His parents were William Benjamin and [__?__] Van Pelt. Benjamin died in Sep 1832 in Fishkill, Dutchess, NY, at 96 years of age and was buried in the Methodist churchyard adjacent to the farm of his grandson, James Taylor.
Benjamin enlisted in the Colonial Army in 1753 or 54, aged 16 years. Was at Fort Orange, afterwards actually engaged in war, with the French and Indians on the northern frontier, taken prisoner by them at Fort Owego 1756, was in the army and a prisoner of war some five or six years. Worked in London as a brickmason three years (three or more), returned to America in the year 1761, married in 1763, aged 29 or 30 years. Died at Fishkill, Dutchess Co, NY, Sept 1832, aged 96 years.
Benjamin F. Taylor entered the Colonial Army in 1753, Co F, 9th NYV. From here on we’ll let his grandson, Augustus Campenfeldt Taylor tell the story as he heard it from Benjamin when he was an old man and Augustus was a very young one: You’ll see the meaning of Augustus’ middle name in the story.
“Their rendezvous was at Fort Orange, Albany, where they awaited supplies and orders. In 1755 the Colonial Governor planned a grand campaign against the French and Indians; one commanded by Gen. Braddock against Fort Duquesne; one commanded by Gen. Johnson against Crown Point; one commanded by Gen. [William] Shirley against Fort Niagara. England was to furnish munitions of war and 6,000 men—the Colonies to raise 10,000 more. All of these campaigns were entire failures. Gen. Shirley with an army of near 2,000, including friendly Indians, advanced in 1755 to the northern Frontier, to Lake Ontario. He went up the Mohawk trail, then the only passable route to this northern lake, striking the lake near its mouth, to proceed hence by water to besiege Fort Niagara, situated near the head of the lake. 6,000 troops were to follow this advance guard. But in consequence of bickerings between Colonial and English officers, they failed to make the connection. The advance guard reached the frontier and built two forts, or more properly called, stockades, both near the mouth of Lake Ontario, one on each side of the Oswego River, one called Ontario and the other Owego. Owing to the desertion of their Indian allies, and severe sickness amongst the Colonial soldiers, the main object of the campaign was abandoned. Gen. Shirley left Col. Mercer in command, returning to Fort Orange, Albany.
“In the above named [Gen Shirley’s] contingent, were parts of three companies of English soldiers, one commanded by Capt. Augustus Campenfeldt. To this company my grandsire Benjamin Taylor was attached.
“In the spring of 1756, the French, seeing the deleterious and fatal mistakes of the English, profited by their failures. The Marquis de la Calm had just been appointed Governor and General of all the French forces in Canada. He collected together at Fort Frontenac, now Kingston, a force of 5,000 men, mostly Indians, crossed Lake Ontario with 30 pieces of cannon, and besieged Fort Ontario. After a bloody fight Col. Mercer was forced to evacuate the place, retiring across the river to Fort Owego. During the night’s retreat, my grandsire Benjamin Taylor, by his expertness as a swimmer, rendered essential service, saving, with others, the life of his captain who was drowning. This incident undoubtedly made them ever after fast friends.
[Significant elements of the two Massachusetts regiments including Benjamin Taylor, which were under the overall command of Colonel James Mercer of Pepperrell’s Regiment, overwintered at Fort Oswego, and suffered significantly due to the shortage of supplies, especially food. Many men died during the winter from diseases such as scurvy, and there had been serious discussion of abandoning the position for want of supplies. While the garrison nominally approached 2,000 men in size, less than 1,200 men were fit for duty.]
“Fort Oswego was besieged. After a bloody resistance of three days, Col. Mercer being killed, the garrison surrendered to Mont de la Calm as prisoners of war. This was in August 1756.
[The Battle of Fort Oswego was one in a series of early French victories in the North American theatre of the Seven Years’ War won in spite of New France’s military vulnerability. During the week of August 10, 1756, a force of regulars and Canadian militia under General Montcalm captured and occupied the British fortifications at Fort Oswego, located at the site of present-day Oswego, New York.
In addition to 1,700 prisoners, Montcalm’s force seized the fort’s 121 cannon. The fall of Fort Oswego effectively interrupted the British presence on Lake Ontario and removed it as a threat to the nearby French-controlled Fort Frontenac. The battle was notable for demonstrating that traditional European siege tactics were viable in North America when applied properly in the right circumstances and terrain.]
“At that time grandfather was about 20 years of ago, having served his country in the French and Indian War over three years.
[The British surrendered about 1,700 people, including laborers, shipbuilders, women and children. When the fort was opened to the Canadian militia and Indians, they rushed in and began plundering the fort, opening the barrels of rum and getting drunk on the contents. Amid the confusion some of the British tried to escape, and were tomahawked and killed by drunken French or Indians. General Montcalm, shocked by the behavior, was eventually able to prevent further killings, although he claimed it would “cost the King eight or ten thousand livres in presents.” He then ordered the destruction of all the supplies the French did not take, as well as the boats under construction, after which the entire company, including the prisoners, traveled to Montreal]
“The prisoners that were not massacred by the Indians arrived safe at Quebec in November. They were conveyed down the River St. Lawrence in bateaux and Indian canoes, arriving at Quebec at the commencement of winter.
“My grandfather at that time was at the zenith of youthful manhood: straight, tall, athletic, brave, and proud of his fine qualities. After reaching Quebec a French officer detailed him as a servant, and ordered him to black his boots. He refused. For this refusal he was imprisoned in a dungeon and fed on bread and water for nearly two months. It so happened that a French soldier for some offense was confined in the same place; he was taken sick and his case reported to the Provost. On leaving for the Court, grandfather told him to tell the Court that an Englishman in the dungeon was sick too, which errand he faithfully performed. My grandfather was ordered into Court. After an examination he told his tale. The Provost ordered him to the Barracks with the other prisoners of war.
“In the spring of 1757 these English prisoners, or a portion of them, were sent to France. The ship in which they were to embark laid in the stream below Quebec. All prisoners were conveyed on board in small boats. A number were massacred at the Embarkadero. Grandfather was the last man to enter a boat. As she shoved off, an Indian made his appearance. Finding his prey too far off, he gave a yell, drew his knife and made a scalping maneuver and picked up a stone, slung it with effect, hitting grandfather in the side. He saved his hair by falling in the boat. His life for a long time was despaired of. He carried the scar in his side, which was an indentation as big as a hen’s egg. This wound troubled him, causing much suffering during a long life.
“He was a prisoner of war in Havre de Grace [Le Havre] in France until 1759. He was then exchanged, went to London, supporting himself there by the occupation of barber. One Sunday in crossing London Bridge, he met face to face his old captain, then Col. A. Campenfeldt—a welcome surprise to both parties.
“The Colonel was to depart the next day to Gibraltar. His regiment was already on board ship. He took grandfather to his house in London, kept by two maiden sisters (for he was not married). Grandfather was introduced to them and made welcome and pressed to make their home his as long as he stayed in London. The next morning Col. A. C. presented grandfather with a purse of five guineas and took his departure for Gibraltar. (Grandfather was never at that place.) And that day was the last seen of the noble Colonel by his friends in London. In 1760 his regiment was ordered from Gibraltar to the East Indies, and he died on the passage.
“Grandfather learned and worked at the trade of brick mason for years in London. He has often told me that he worked some two years on the Tower of London.
“He returned to America about the year 1762. Sailed for Boston in a bark which was wrecked off the harbor; reached New York by a coaster; by sail to Peekskill; foots it out to Yorktown, where he was born; calls for entertainment at his father’s home; receives a welcome; after supper makes himself known to the family. After a hearty embrace by all, his father took down the old fiddle from the wall—fiddled, danced and sung, “Benjamin, my son that was dead, is alive again, alive again.” Grandfather had been absent and mourned as dead some eight or nine years, having a brother born in his absence, at that time seven years of age. His name was altered to Absalom.”
Though periodically suffering from a wound in his side, Benjamin had general good health and muscular power, and lived to the age of 96. He appears to have been a Presbyterian. In his Journal, the Rev. Silas Constant, Pastor of the Yorktown Presbyterian Church, mentioned in 1792 and 1794, riding to Benjamin Taylor’s house and preaching there. In the early 1800’s Benjamin moved up to Fishkill in Dutchess County, along with his grandsons James and Augustus.
Children of Jemima and Benjamin
i. James Taylor b. 1764 Peekskill, NY; d. 23 Jan 1844 in Westford, Chittenden Co, VT, at 79 years of age; m. 15 Feb 1786 in Franklin, Franklin Co, Mass. to Salome Partridge (b. 8 Sep 1768 in Keene, Cheshire, NH – d. 1834 – Westford, Chittenden, Vermont) Salome’s parents were Lieut. Amos Partridge (1742 – 1821) and Melatiah Ellis (1746 – 1823).
James’ father-in-law Amos Partridge was 2d Lieut, Capt Asa Fairbank’s South Co in 2d precinct of Wrentham, Col. Benjamin Hawes regt of Mass. Militia
As a boy, James moved with his family to Franklin, MA. At 16 he apprenticed with Thad Adams to learn the blacksmith trade; at 17 he enlisted for three years in the Continental Army. He was at Valley Forge and often talked about how he and his comrades dug up the tails of beef after they had been buried for months, stewed them, and ate them without salt or pepper to sustain life.. After the war he returned to Franklin, to finish his apprenticeship.
After finishing his trade, with a group of friends, he crossed the Alleghenies on foot, having only one horse for packing. At Pittsburgh he came near to losing his life by falling in the night off the wall of old Fort Duquesne. He crossed the Ohio River into Virginia, thence to Kentucky. James was with Capt. Meriwether Lewis‘ surveying party one season. They had several skirmishes with the Indians; several of his party died but he was unharmed. The only trophy of his adventures was a razor strop made from the untanned hide of an Indian.
James returned to Franklin, married Miss Partridge with the intention of returning to Kentucky, but was persuaded by friends to settle down in Franklin where he carried on a general blacksmith’s business for years, he then returned to Peekskill where he continued blacksmithing and ship smithing, and finally moved to Westford, VT where he remained the rest of his life.
During the War of 1812, Captain James Taylor raised a company from his neighborhood, serving from 1 Sep to 8 Dec 1812. In Sep 1814 he volunteered again to fight in the Battle of Plattsburgh, serving for 7 days. His son, Augustus, told this story:
“In 1812 the U.S. declared war against Great Britain. He then raised a company of men and entered the service of his country. Most of his company were Westford, Milton, Essex and Underhill boys. These men enlisted for one year. At the expiration of their term of service he was detailed by the General in command to the recruiting service. In the summer of 1814 he visited New York and Peekskill on this business. Sister Salome accompanied him to Peekskill where Brother James was then located….He returned… about ten days before the battle of Plattsburgh. Volunteers were called for and the Green Mountain Boys nobly responded. On the Sunday morning one week before the battle took place, there was music in the air all along the ridge between Squire Bowman’s and Capt. Taylor’s. The bugles sounded and drums beat “To Arms, To Arms.” The road was lined with marching volunteers. They went by the road through the Government Reserve to Milton, thence by water to Plattsburgh.
My father was detailed and led the boys onward. After arriving in camp the General detailed him to serve the boys with guns and ammunition. They fell short of cartridge boxes to go all around. Priest Worster of Fairfield, who had raised a company, when it came his turn, filled his capacious pockets (these pockets were in a big silk vest where he carried his Bible and Psalm Book) with double rounds of cartridges, which made the boys cheer heartily. After this service was completed, he was given in charge of a regiment of these Volunteers, who formed the front guard in following the Red Coats on their retreat to Canada. So earnest were these volunteers that when the rear guard was overtaken and hoisted the white flag, it was hard to restrain them. Their cry was “There’s a Red Coat, damn him! Fire!” The day of this battle, Sunday, the 13th, 1814, is to me ever to be remembered.
Although then scarce six years of age, I can remember what happened there as if it were yesterday. A few infirm men with women and children, gathered together on Bold Hill, the dividing line between Westford and Milton, to see the battle go on. Your grandmothers Bowman and Taylor were there with their children. Your mother, father, uncles and aunts, and in fact, the whole neighborhood turned out. The able bodied men were, nearly to a man, gone to battle for their country. I remember one incident that happened on that eventful day: an old hunter by the name of Jack Willis came sauntering up the hill from the Milton side, with his rifle on his shoulder. Old grandfather Partridge asked him if he was not ashamed for not being in the ranks fighting for his country. He excused himself by saying he had been to the embarcadero and could not get a passage over the lake. The old man told him he was a coward. He, however, done us some service for he felled several trees to give all a better view of the battlefield.” [Milton is over 200 miles from Plattsburg, I’m not sure where the viewers and the battle were.]
ii. Augustus Campenfeldt Taylor was born 12 Sep 1770 in Peekskill, Westchester, New York . He went with his father’s family to Franklin, Mass but returned to Peekskill at the age of 16. He was married by Rev. Silas Constant, 11 Apr 1792 to Elizabeth Lent at her father’s house in Peekskill, Westchester Co, NY. Elizabeth was born 16 Sep 1773 and died 27 Sep 1857 in Peekskill. Her parents were Hercules Lent (1735 – 1816) and Wyntje VanTassel (1735 – 1814) Augustus and Elizabeth had three children who all died young.
Augustus C. Taylor appears to have been educated and well to do and at the time of his death was said to be one of the best and most thrifty farmers in Westchester Co. In 1801 he mortgaged to Jonathan Ferris, for $1625, two properties: 49 1/2 acres in the town of Cortland on the south side of the road from Peekskill to the Yorktown Meeting House and 16 1/2 acres on the same road. It was paid off by 1804. These may have been part of the old family farm in Yorktown from whence Benjamin left to enter the army. In his will, dated 20 Feb 1815, proved 4 Apr 1815, Augustus bequeathed $300 to his brother, James Taylor, $400 to his nephew William Taylor, son of his deceased brother Justus, $1,400 to his nephew James Taylor, along with all his land lying on the north side of the road leading from Crompond to Peekskill (now downtown Peekskill) except half of the lot adjoining the land of James Divon. He willed all his household goods and all his books and the residue of his estate to his wife Elizabeth. His nephew, James Taylor, was charged with using whatever he needed from his bequest for the support and maintenance of Augustus’ father, Benjamin Taylor. His wife Elizabeth was also charged with giving a good and decent support to his father. The executors were Elizabeth, his brother-in-law Henry Lent, and a friend, William Nelson. Apparently there were no living children.
iii. Justus William Taylor b. 1771 in Peekskill;; d. 18 Sep 1799 buried at Cortlandville, New York; m. Rosetta Place
Justus was a sea captain in the West Indies trade. He died of yellow fever on return from one of his voyages. Their son William took the name of his wife’s second husband, Capt. John Skiddy, a ship captain of Stamford, Connecticut and New York City and was well known as Capt. William Skiddy.
William T. Skiddy was an artist, naval architect, Captain and an entrepreneur. In 1805 at the age of ten he signed on as a cabin boy aboard the packet ship the ROSE-IN-BLOOM. After a voyage to Charleston, S.C. he returned to New York City and become a cabin boy and then an assistant steward for his step-father.
With the exception of his three years of schooling in France he stayed in the merchant service until 1812. He spent eight months as a prisoner of war when the crew of the Brig STEPHEN was captured by the british frigate ANDROMACHE. The day after his release he joined the US Navy and received his Midshipman’s commission from President Madison. Captain James Lawrence ordered him to report to the HORNET as a master-mate where he served under the command of Captain James Biddle for the duration of the war. While on board he sketched a few of the significant battles that the HORNET had participated in.
In 1816 he returned to merchant service where he was given the command of the ship MARIA THERESA. He was in the South Pacific during the blockade of Callao by Lord Cochrane, at which time he ran the blockade and brought away the Spanish Viceroy of Peru.
During his many voyages along the Pacific coast he surveyed and charted many of the ports he visited.
In 1826 he was given command of the packet ship HENRI IV, a Havre packet, and continued in this service until 1847 when he retired from the sea.
In 1844 he entered into the naval construction business with his half-brother Francis. Soon after he was appointed by the US government to superintend the construction of the Collins steamers, which were used as mail steamers.
During his life at sea, Capt. Skiddy kept a journal, and at some point in his life he transcribed them into two volumes entitled “The Ups and Downs of a Sea Life from 1805”.
See William T Skiddy Collection at Mystic Seaport Museum – Personal and business papers, journals, marine drawings, and sketchbooks of William Taylor Skiddy, primarily concerning naval activities; expeditions and political involvement in Peru; and shipbuilding activities.
iv. [__?__] Taylor, female
6. Samuel FOSTER (See his page)
8. Desire Foster
Desire’s first husband Nathaniel Metcalf was born 1742 in Providence, Rhode Island. His parents were xx. Nathaniel died in 1842.
Desire’s second husband Maj. Abijah Draper was born Abijah Draper was born 10 May 1737 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass. His parents were James Draper and Abigail Child. He first married 8 Apr 1762 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass to Alice Eaton (31 Jan 1741 in Purgatory, Dedham, Mass. – 22 Jan 1777 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass.) Abijah died 1 May 1780 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass.
Child of Desire and Abijah
i. Lendamine Draper b. 1779 Dedham, Mass. ; d. 26 Oct 1823 Dedham, Suffolk, Mass.; m. 6 Apr 1800 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass to Calvin Guild (b. 6 Jul 1775 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass/ -d. 25 Apr 1858 in Dedham, Norfolk, Mass.) Calvin’s parents were Joseph Guild (1735 – 1794) and Miriam Draper (1739 – 1831). Lendamine and Calvin had nine children born between 1801 and 1823.
10. Bartholomew Foster
Bartholomew died on the way to the Siege of Quebec in Oct 1775. See my story Invasion of Canada 1775
The Battle of Quebec was fought on 31 Dec 1775 between American Continental Army forces and the British defenders of the city of Quebec, early in the American Revolutionary War. The battle was the first major defeat of the war for the Americans, and it came at a high price. General Richard Montgomery was killed, Benedict Arnold was wounded, and Daniel Morgan and more than 400 men were taken prisoner. The city’s garrison, a motley assortment of regular troops and militia led by Quebec’s provincial governor, General Guy Carleton, suffered a small number of casualties.
Montgomery’s army had captured Montreal on November 13, and in early December they joined a force led by Arnold, whose men had made an arduous trek through the wilderness of northern New England. Governor Carleton had escaped from Montreal to Quebec, the Americans’ next objective, and last-minute reinforcements arrived to bolster the city’s limited defenses before the attacking force’s arrival. Concerned that expiring enlistments would reduce his force, Montgomery made the end-of-year attack in a blinding snowstorm to conceal his army’s movements. The plan was for separate forces led by Montgomery and Arnold to converge in the lower city before scaling the walls protecting the upper city. Montgomery’s force turned back after he was killed by cannon fire early in the battle, but Arnold’s force penetrated further into the lower city. Arnold was injured early in the attack, and Morgan led the assault in his place before he became trapped in the lower city and was forced to surrender. Arnold and the Americans maintained an ineffectual blockade of the city until spring, when British reinforcements arrived.
In the battle and the following siege, French-speaking Canadiens were active on both sides of the conflict. The American forces received supplies and logistical support from local residents, and the city’s defenders included locally raised militia. When the Americans retreated, they were accompanied by a number of their supporters; those who remained behind were subjected to a variety of punishments after the British re-established control over the province.
Arnold refused to retreat; despite being outnumbered three to one, the sub-freezing temperature of the winter and the mass departure of his men after their enlistments expired, he laid siege to Quebec. The siege had relatively little effect on the city, which Carleton claimed had enough supplies stockpiled to last until May. Immediately after the battle, Arnold sent Moses Hazen and Edward Antill to Montreal, where they informed General Wooster of the defeat. They then traveled on to Philadelphia to report the defeat to Congress and request support. (Both Hazen and Antill, English-speakers originally from the Thirteen Colonies who had settled in Quebec, went on to serve in the Continental Army for the rest of the war.) In response to their report, Congress ordered reinforcements to be raised and sent north. During the winter months, small companies of men from hastily recruited regiments in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut made their way north to supplement the Continental garrisons at Quebec and Montreal. The presence of disease in the camp outside Quebec, especially smallpox, took a significant toll on the besiegers, as did a general lack of provisions.
The Dedham historical register, Volumes 5-6 By Dedham Historical Society (Mass.)
Foster genealogy, Part 2 By Frederick Clifton Pierce 1899