Pension Application for Levi Hanks
State of Vermont
District of Addison
On this 8th day of February 1833, personally appeared before the Probate Court for the said District of Addison in open court, Levi Hanks, resident in Addison in the County of Addison aged seventy-one years, on the 28th day of May last, who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the act of Congress passed June 7, 1832.
I was born in Mansfield, Connecticut, on the 28th day of May 1761 when I was about nine years old my father removed to a place called Windsor, County of Berkshire, Massachusetts. At this place and at Cheshire in the same county, I resided during the war. In the year 1777, when I was sixteen years of age, news arrived, that the British Army, under General Burgoyne, were moving out of Canada into the United States and in the month of June, when farmers were hoeing corn for the first time, I volunteered in a company of militia commanded by Captain Pierce and was marched towards the north for the purpose of opposing the enemy. We were employed on our way in guarding the stores, after we had marched several days we were met by news that Ticonderoga had surrendered and we were ordered back to a place called Wallomskaik,(Walloomsac) near Bennington, where we remained a few days, and then were marched to Manchester where there were several thousand troops collected, with a view of opposing the British army.
While there, about two hundred of our troops, and I among them, were ordered out one night to take some of the British and took four or five prisoners; I was in the service this time one month and a half. Levi Thompson was orderly sergeant of our company. I have forgotten the name of the lieutenant, but I recollect that he went home before we were dismissed.
In the month of August following an alarm came that the British were coming out to Bennington, and I volunteered again in the militia, and marched to Bennington. We went on without much organization and I do not recollect any captain that I was under. While there I recollect that I was under the command of Colonel Stafford, of Cheshire, who was wounded in Bennington Battle. I arrived there the day after the battle, and was employed in guarding the British prisoners taken in the battle who were kept a few days in the meeting house, and then I was ordered as a guard to conduct them to Pittsfield, Massachusetts. I was in the service at this time not less than ten days.
Not long after this I enlisted for one month to go to Whitehall landing, at the south of Lake Champlain; at that place I served the month out. I am not able to recollect the exact time of the year; but I think it was before the capture of Burgoyne, as I recollect while there that we heard firing at a distance, which we supposed to be the enemy. Our object was to interrupt the communication of the British army with Canada. I think there was about three hundred militia at that place. We started under the command of a sergeant, and were put under other officers when we arrived there; but I am not able to recollect their names. Some year or two after this, at Cheshire aforesaid, sometime in the summer, I enlisted for three months and a half in a company of Massachusetts state troops, commanded by Captain White of Hoosick, New York, who was hired as a substitute by Captain Brown of Cheshire, who had been engaged for this service. The lieutenants name was Sprague, the order sergeant’s name was Day. We were marched to Stone Robby on the Mohawk River, opposite Fort Plain. We were employed in a picket fort called I think Fort Paris, in guarding the frontier from the British, Tories and Indians.
The day before my time expired, a man rode up in the character of a friend, who was supposed belonged to the enemy, and informed the garrison, that Colonel Van Rensselaer and close by with troops to relieve us which escited so much joy to the troops, that they all rushed out of the fort to the number of about three hundred men, for the purpose of meeting them. When we had marched about a mile and a half, the enemy consisting of four hundred British, four hundred Tories and Indians, about one hundred, who were lying in ambush, rose & fired upon us, and killed a considerable number, nine out of our company and the rest fled. Forty of us reached the fort and shut ourselves up with the women and children who also fled to the fort. About one third of our troops were killed and among them Colonel Brown, who had the command. The enemy set fire to the town and to all the stacks of hay and grain in the neighborhood, which provided a very great conflagration. They fired for sometime with muskets into the fort and wounded one man in the head, by the name of James Slater, but did not make any serious attack upon the fort. Afterwards some of our straggling troops returned to the fort, several of whom had been scalped by the Indians. I was detained about a week after my time expired, to assist in burying the dead. A part of the time while at this fort, I was employed in driving and guarding cattle to Fort Stanwix.
At another time, I volunteered and was in the service with a small number of troops for three weeks, but I have very little recollection about it. I however recollect that I went to Bennington, Shaftsbury, and Manchester, Vermont and to the North River (Hudson).
Through age, and particularly in consequence of a shock of numb palsy, my memory has greatly failed within a few years so that I am now unable to recollect my circumstances and status connected with my service with which my mind before was familiar. But I am quite certain that I served the length of time above stated and that in the whole, I served ten days over six months besides the above mentioned period of three weeks.
I never had any written discharge and I have now no documentary evidence; and I haven been unable to obtain any evidence of my said service in except such as is hereto annexed. After the war I resided about one year in Pawlet, Vermont and then moved to Addison where I have ever since resided. I have a record of my age in my family Bible made by my mother. And I hereby relinquish every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present; and declare that my name is not on the pension roll of the agency of any state.
(Signed) Levi Hanks
Sworn and subscribed the day and date aforesaid.
(Signed) Saml Swift, Judge.
And the said court do hereby declare their opinion, after the investigation of the matter, and after putting the interrogations prescribed by the War Department that the above named applicant was a revolutionary soldier and served as he states and the court further certifies that it appears to them that Burton Carpenter who has signed the preceding certificate is a clergyman resident in the Town of Addison and that Henry Smith who has signed the same is a resident in said Addison (and whose affidavit is also annexed) and is a man of very respectable standing, and a credible person and that their statement is entitled to credit and that Daniel Smith whose affidavit is annexed is a credible person and of respectable standing.
(Signed) Saml Swift, Judge.
State of Vermont
District of Addison
On this 21 day of March AD 1853, personally appeared before the court, A Probate for said district, Chloe Hanks a resident of Addison in district, and state aged seventy-four years who being duly sworn according to law doth on her oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the previsions made by act of Congress approved February 5, AD 1853.
That she is the widow of Levi Hanks late of Addison in the country and state who was a Revolutionary soldier of the United States in the Massachusetts Militia and a pensioner of the United States for his service as such under the law of the United States passed June 7, 1832 at the rate of twenty-nine dollars and forty three cents and his name inscribed on the Vermont Roll for Addison County.
She further declares that he was married to the said Levi Hanks of Addison in sd [said] county & state on the 11th day of June AD 1814, by Henry Smith Esq., a Justice of the Peace and that her name before marriage was Chloe Squires and that her husband the sd [said] Levi Hanks died at Addison on the 19th day of December AD 1835 and that she has remained his widow ever since that period.
(Signed with her mark) Chloe Hanks
(Signed) Henry Willmarth
Sworn to and subscribed on the day and year before written before me.
(Signed) Henry Munsill, Judge
I hereby depose and say that I am Town Clerk of Addison in the County of Addison and State of Vermont and that I have the care of the records of said town and that I have the records now before me and the following appears on record,
State of Vermont, Addison County
Be it remembered that at Addison in the county aforesaid on this eleventh day of June one thousand eight hundred and four Levi Hanks of Addison in the county aforesaid and State of Vermont and Chloe Squires of the town, county and sate aforesaid were duly joined in marriage by me.
Henry Smith, Justice of Peace
Which is a true copy except the figures (1804)
Addison March 25 1805.Then I received this certificate for record.
Attest Gideon Seeger Registrar
I further depose and say that the above is true copy of the record of said town of Addison with the exception above named as certified by me.
(Signed) Henry Wiltmarth, Town Clerk
Henry Smith of Addison in the County of Addison and State of Vermont, do
hereby certify that I am in the sixty-fourth year of my age, and am well
acquainted with Levi Hanks who has made application of a pension and have
lived in the immediate neighborhood with him for more than forty years and
in the town of Addison and likewise before, while living in Cheshire, Mass.
and in the time of the Revolutionary War I knew of his going in the service,
I understood he had enlisted but for how long I cannot say, but from an early
period he has told me he was in the Battle at Stone Roby, and have often
heard him relate a number of circumstances as follows; that he supposed they
were led by a traitor; into the mouth of the enemy; where they, the enemy
lay in ambush, that Col. Brown was shot dead the first fire, and our troops
retreated to the fort and the enemy pursued and killed a number, and when
they got into the fort they placed themselves on the fort in order to make
as much show as possible and the enemy came in sight and set fire to hay
and wheat stacks and buildings and then march off; I have heard him say he
was out in the service several other times, but where, and how long I don’t
recollect he ever told me, I have often heard him say that the Battle at
Stone Roby commenced one day before his time was out; I further certify that
I verily believe him the said Levi Hanks to be a person of truth and veracity
and that he is so be considered in the neighborhood where he resides.
(Signed) Henry Smith
Subscribed and sworn to this 9th day of February 1833, before me Henry Brevoort Just. Peace
Daniel Smith of Addison in the County of Addison and State of Vermont of
lawful age, do hereby certify that I am well acquainted with Levi Hanks of
said Addison and I have often heard him say he was at the Battle at Stone
Roby, that the enemy lay in ambush behind and old bush fence, and were fire
upon by the enemy, before having any notice of the enemy being so nigh that
the commander of our troops in that action was killed the first time from
the enemy, and our troops retreated to the fort and the enemy pursued and
came in sight of the fort and set fire to buildings, stacks of hay, wheat
&c I have heard him relate the above circumstances when I was quite young
and I am now rising of fifty eight years of age and I further certify that
I verily believe the said Levi Hanks to be a person of truth, and is so considered
in the neighborhood where he resides.
(Signed) Daniel Smith
Subscribed and sworn to this 9th day of February 1833 before me (Signed) Henry Smith Justice Peace.
We, Burton Carpenter, a clergyman residing in Addison in the County of Addison and Henry Smith residing in said Addison hereby certify that we are well acquainted with Levi Hanks of said Addison who has made application for a pension, that we believe him to be seventy one years of age, that he is respected and believed in the neighborhood which he resides to have been a soldier of the Revolution and that we concur in that opinion. (Signed) Henry Smith and Burton Carpenter
Sworn and subscribed this 29th day of December 1832 before me. (Signed) Henry Brevoort Just. Peace