Morrison's Pensions


Pension Application for John Campbell

W.20834
B.L.Wt.30.698-160-55
Marine Court of the City of New York
            In the Marine Court of the City of New York held at the City Hall of the said City in and for the said City before the Justices there of this twenty ninth day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty two.  Present the honorable Robert Swantor and Effinglar Schieffeler Esquires Justices of the said Court.
            City and County of New York.  Be it remembered that on the twenty ninth day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty two personally appeared in open court that is to say before the above Robert Swantor and Effinglar Scheffeler Justices of the Marine Court aforesaid in open court, the same being a court of record for the said City, according to the laws of the of the State of New York, John Campbell a resident or inhabitant of said City of New York aged seventy six years and upwards who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the provision made by the acts of Congress of the 18th day of March 1818 and the first of May 1820, and the other acts (if any) in such case made and provided, that is to say, that some time in the month of May 1776 he enlisted in the company commanded by Captain Edward Meeks (1) in the City of New York for the Term of Five months, this company was attached to Colonel William Malcom’s regiment of General Marian Scotts (2) Brigade, that during the first part of said term of five months he was stationed in different parts of said City, subsequently cross’d over to Long Island & joined the main army under General Washington and after about four weeks recross’d to the said City under Washington’s command at his celebrated retreat, was then stationed for a short at the Trench Tan yards in the City of New York and then cross’d Kings Bridge to New Rochelle in Westchester County in the State of New York, the battalion in which he was, soon after arriving at New Rochelle, retreated to the White Plains several miles distant pursued by the enemy, continued at White plains until after the battle (at which he was present called after that place) went next to Peekskill with his company who were afterwards compelled to conceal themselves in the Mountains commonly called the highlands, in the same county, continued there about four weeks performing various severe duties and then cross’d over at King’s Ferry from the county of Westchester to Rockland County, on the west side of the Hudson River in the State of New York while in the last said last mentioned county he was stationed at Nyack, and afterwards at Clarkstown under the command of Colonel Malcolm & General Scott while stationed at the two last mentioned places he with his company was constantly employed in making excursions upon the enemy, principally in the State of New Jersey adjoining Rockland County, although all the posts occupied by him during the five months were in the State of New York. The time of enlistment expired while at Clarkstown, all the company omitted receiving a regular discharge, the company were paid at Clarkstown and this deponent received, fifteen dollars in full for five months service, this service was arduous in the extreme, the individuals composing the company were constantly on duty and during the whole time & this deponent suffered severely from the destitute situation in which he was placed, being often without clothes & provisions and the privation so great that he was compelled to go without shoes or any other covering to his feet for three months.
            The spring of 1778 (the particular month he does not distinctly recollect) he enlisted in the company commanded by Captain Peter Ward then stationed at New Hackensack portions of the army being stationed in company in the County of Bergen & State of New Jersey, the term of service was for one year the whole of which time was fully served by him at the last mentioned place, received neither pay nor discharge for this last service.
            After the expiration of the last mentioned Term of one year, Capt. Outwater (3)came in and took the command of the same post, when the deponent enlisted under him for one month while he served at the said post but obtained at the expiration of said time neither pay nor discharge.
            Sometime in the Spring of 1781 this deponent enlisted in the Neighborhood of Morristown in the County of Morris & State of New Jersey for the Term of Three months in a company commanded by William (since Judge) Pennington of the State of New Jersey, he was stationed with Captain Pennington’s company belonging to Colonel Seely’s regiment at Morristown for a short time and then marched to Dobb’s Ferry in the State of New Jersey continued on duty at Dobb’s Ferry about three weeks and then went to a place called Springfield continued there the remainder of his term of service, received neither pay nor discharge at the full end of this term of service, Deponent from the lapse of time and infirmity of age does not distinctly recollect the other duties in which he was engaged in the revolutionary war although he knows he was constantly on duty in the continental army under different officers from 1776 to 1783.
            And this deponent further saith that on every occasion above referred to he served the full period of his enlistment and received the approbation of his different commanders, but that it was not unusual at that time to give discharges to person who served the full extent of the period for which they enlisted and that the only compensation he ever received for all his services was the fifteen dollars he received at Clarkstown for the five months service under Captain Meeks, since the revolution he has lived constantly in the City & State of New York and used formerly to pursue the business of shoemaking, but in consequence of rheumatic afflictions he has not for some time past been enabled to pursue his occupation either with comfort or profit, his only dependence at present for a livelihood for himself & family (consisting of a wife aged sixty one years & upwards in “bad health”, his daughter and a grand child all of whom he is compelled to provide for ) is by going upon the duties of a night watchman in the City of New York, this duty is arduous & hazardous for a man of his age, it produces him three dollars per week & is a duty for which, in his increasing age renders him incompetent to perform & he has been hitherto retained in the employment as a matter of charity in the entire absence of all other means for obtaining a livelihood—Deponent has not before made application for a pension in consequence of his entire ignorance on the subject—although he was in the year 1818 in a state of destitution and has continued so since that time—yet for want of information & other facilities to accomplish such an object, he has suffered all the hardships attendant or a state of the most abject poverty.  Deponent says that unless his is speedily relieved by the country which he has served faithfully, and for which he has suffered so much, he must from his necessitation situation be compelled to become an inmate of the Alms house, as his friends are too necessitatious themselves to relieve him, and had he before obtained that which government so kindly provided he would have enjoyed comparative comfort from the time the laws went into effect & that the arrears from the first passing of the laws under which he now applies would (if now obtained) bear object of the greatest importance to his helpless family which in the course of nature he must otherwise shortly leave destitute and unprovided for & deponent has no other evidence of his services than the annexed affidavits of Sylvester Morris and Geradus Riker, revolutionary Soldiers now in court and pointed out by this deponent.  (Signed) John Campbell
            Sworn before me this 29th day of March 1832 in open court.  E. Scheffeler & Robert Swanton
Reply to letter of inquiry dated May 6, 1931.
            You are advised that it appears from the papers in the Revolutionary War pension claim, W. 20834, that John Campbell was born in 1756 in New York City.
            While residing in New York City, he enlisted in May, 1776, and served five months as private in Captain Edward Meek’s company, Colonel William Malcolm’s New York regiment, and served one year in the Quartermaster’s Department at Fishkill under Colonel Hughes.
            While residing in Bergen County, New Jersey, he enlisted and served with the New Jersey troops, as follows:
            From the spring of 1778, one year in Captain Peter Ward’s company, one month in Captain Outwater’s company, and one month in Captain Christie’s Company; from the spring of 1781, three months in Captain William Pennington’s company, Colonel Seeley’s regiment; in 1782, nine months in Captains Herring and Blanch’s company.
            He was allowed pension on his application executed March 29, 1832, at which time he was living in New York City.
            He died November 5, 1835, in New York City.
            He married September 9, 1787, in Pompton or Paramus, Bergen County, New Jersey, Catharine Row.
            She was allowed pension on her application executed May 24, 1839, at which time she was living in New York City, and was aged sixty-eight years.
            She died October 9, 1856.
            Their oldest son, John was born June 7, 1788.  In 1832 the soldier referred to a daughter and to a grandchild whose names were not stated.  A daughter was referred to in 1843 but her name was not given, and there is no further reference to children.

End Notes—John Campbell—W.20834

  1. Captain Edward Meeks’ Company in Colonel William Malcolm’s Regiment of Additional Continental Regiment.
  2. John Morin Scott was appointed Brigadier General on June 9, 1776 to command three thousand Militia from the Colony of New York.  We were The Colonies until July 4, 1776.  After the Declaration of Independence we were no longer referred to as United Colonies of America but the United States of America.  General Scott was also wounded at the Battle of White Plains, NY on October 28, 1776.
  3. Captain John Outwater of the New Jersey Militia.

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