Pension Application for Jacob Johnson alias Isaac Baker or Jacob Baker or Jacob Becker
R.415 Served as Washington’s Rear Guard. Also served in the War of 1812. Listed as deserted July 30, 1780 from Penn. Rgt. Accompanying papers also say “after Rev.”. Still in another place on a record card from the Department of the Interior, “Col. Jacob Baker or Becker or Bicker. Major and Col. in Rev. Com. By Congress. Jan 4, 1782 and afterwards promoted to Colonel.” This is one for Jim Morrison to figure out. The file is 112 pages long.
State of New York
Suffolk County SS.
On this third October one thousand eight hundred and thirty two personally appeared in open court in the Court of Common Pleas in and for the said County of Suffolk and state of New York now sitting Isaac Baker a resident of the town of Southampton in the County of Suffolk aged seventy eight years who being duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provision made by the act of Congress passed June the seventh one thousand and thirty two.
That he volunteered in the service of the United States in year 1775 under Capt. Thomas Mitchell does not recollect the name of the Col. under which he served was not in the general engagement on Long Island but was in a skirmish when the army retreated off the Island was in near end was among the last left the Island retreated with the army from New York to Kingsbridge when from Kingsbridge to White Plains was there when it was burnt went from there to Fort Lee was at Fort Lee when Fort Washington was taken went from there as near as he can recollect to New Jersey was at Brunswick when his time was out. Inlisted for three years in the falls as near as he can recollect under Capt. Bomam does not recollect the names of any of the other officers except Lieutenant Camell had a small skirmish near Brunswick went from there to Fishkill in the State of New York from Fishkill marched up the river to Red Hook staid there about three weeks an[d] then return[ed] to Fishkill took a small British vessel which got aground in the river after his return to Fishkill and while there was attached to the Artillery does not recollect the name of his Capt. But the regiment was commanded by Col. John Lamb staid at Fishkill some time was discharged at Fishkill went home staid about a month went to Poughkeepsie there inlisted under Capt. James Wood to go an expedition against the Indians under the Command of Gen Sullivan does not recollect who was Col of the regiment does not recollect in what year this was. In return to Fishkill again was discharge there again inlisted in a company under the command of Capt. Abraham Swartout does not recollect who was the Col but was out to West Point was then under the Command of Gen. Arnold was there to the best of his recollection eight or nine months before Arnold’s treason cannot recollect who took the command after Arnold left the fort was at West Point when peace was proclaimed was discharged the after peace received a written discharged at the end of his three years was out but has lost it and does not [know] by whom it was given nor what has become of it received a written discharge when his time was out in the nine months since under Gen. Sullivan but has lost it and does not have any recollection of the officer that gave it to him received no written discharge peace was proclaimed but went home with a number of others.
And deponent further declares that he was born in the town of Hempstead in the County of Queens and State of New York on the twentieth day of March in the year 1754 that he seen a record of his age in a family Bible owned by his father that the last he knew of the Bible it was in his mothers possession in Poughkeepsie and he does not know what has become of it since her death that after the war he resided in Poughkeepsie for two or three years and removed to Southold in the County of Suffolk where he resided twenty years or more from Southold he went to Shelter Island in said County where he resided eight years from Shelter Island he went to the town of Southampton in said County where he resided ever since where he now resides and he further declares that he has no documentary evidence to show that he was in the service nor does he know of any person alive that can certify to his service in the United States & State troops as Volunteers and he further declares that to the best of his recollection he was in service as a volunteer and regular soldier six years and seven months.
And deponent further declares that Abraham A. Gardener and John P. Osborn both of the town of Southampton in the county and state aforesaid who can testify to my character for truth and both believe that I was a revolutionary soldier.
And deponent further declares that he hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension and he declares that his name is not on the pension roll of any state. (Signed with his mark) Isaac Baker
Sworn the day & year aforesaid Joseph L. Huntting Clk
State of New York
County of Suffolk SS.
On this fifth day of June 1834 personally appeared in open court in the Court of Oyer and Terminer and general Jail delivery in and for said County of Suffolk and State of New York being a court of record and so constitutes by an act of the Legislature of the State of New York Jacob Johnson a resident of the said County of Suffolk aged seventy nine years who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provision made by the Act of Congress passed June 7th 1832. That he enlisted in the army of the United States at the several times and several under the several officers as herein after set forth viz That he first enlisted in the month of May in the year 1776 or near Long Island the Town of Oyster Bay on Long Island for the term of five months in the company commanded by Captain Thomas Mitchell of Flushing Long Island but he cannot state from loss of memory the Regiment or Brigade nor the names of his general officers, that he marched in a few days after his enlistment with his company to the West end of Long Island, that he was at the Battle on Long Island under General Putnam that he retreated with the American Army under General Washington from Long Island to the City of New York continued in New York until it was given up and retreated with the American Army to Kings Bridge and to White Plains, that he was at Fort Washington the night before it was attacked by the enemy that he crossed the Hudson River to Fort Lee and continued to serve in the said company in New Jersey of the term of about one year from the time of his first enlistment when he was regularly discharged from the said service and his company disbanded in New Jersey but the name of the place he is unable to state that immediately after his said discharge he again enlisted for the term of one year in New Jersey but he cannot state the name of the place, in the Brigade commanded by General Lee but he cannot state the names of his company or general officers, that he continued to serve out the said term of one year and then immediately reenlisted at FishKill in the State of New York for the term of two years in the Regiment commanded by Colonel John Lamb and Colonel John Malcomb that he served out the said term of two years and was discharged at Poughkeepsie State of New York that he then again inlisted for the term of nine months in the company commanded by Captain James Wood in General Sullivan’s Brigade that he served out the said term of nine months and was discharged at FishKill aforesaid that he then again inlisted for a specified time but he is unable to state the time nor can he state the company or regiment in which he served nor the names of his company or general officers, but he continued to serve until the end or close of the war when he was regularly discharged at FishKill. That he marched from New Jersey up the River as far as Red Hook where they received news of the capture of General Burgoine that he was at West Point under General Arnold At the time of his treason, that he aided in dismounting the guns at that time, that he was there when General Washington came to the fort after Arnold left it. That he was in a skirmish or Battle near New Brunswick in New Jersey and was wounded by a ball entering the side of his leg just above his knee which was [causant?] the scar of which he still retains, that he went under Capt. James Wood And General Sullivan against the Indians to the Westward that Captain Wood was taken and made a prisoner by the Indians that he went out at the dawn of day a little distance from the Fort unarmed and the Indians lying in ambush took him and kept him a prisoner nearly three years, but he finally got home that he the deponent was in the fort at the time that the whole of his said service in the Revolutionary Army was about six years and seven months, that his last discharge was a written one and he had two other written discharges but they have all been lost or destroyed for more than thirty years. That he was born at Hempstead on Long Island on the 20th of March 1755 as he has always understood and believes that he has now no record of his Age that his father kept a record of the ages of his family but the Bible which it was kept went into the family of the second husband of his mother and he does not know where it is. That at the time of his first enlistment he resided at a place called Green Hills in the town of Oyster Bay on Long Island—that he lived in Poughkeepsie about two years immediately after the War, that he then removed to the Town of Southold in Suffolk County L.I. and lived about twenty years he then lived about eight years in the Town of Shelter Island, and ever since he has lived in the Town of Southampton in Suffolk County where he still resides. That he cannot remember who signed his written discharges from the several service. That he hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or an annuity except the present and he declares that his name is not on the pension roll of the agency of any state. (Signed with his cross) Jacob Johnson
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid in open Court. Attest, Joseph A. Huntting Clk
Declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the act of Congress passed June 7th 1832.
State of New York
County of Suffolk
On this 24th day of August in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty nine personally appeared before me Hugh Halsey, first Judge of the Court of common Pleas, for the County of Suffolk, Jacob Jonson a resident of the Village of Sag. Harbor in the Town of South Hampton, County of Suffolk and State of New York, aged eighty four years, 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 the Seventh, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty two. That he was born at Hempstead on Long Island, County of Queens and State of New York on the twentieth day of March one thousand seven hundred and fifty five. That he resided there until the commencement of the Revolution War, when he voluntarily enlisted in the United States Army in a company under the command of Captain Thomas Mitchell, for the term of five month, from the first of May in the year seventeen hundred and seventy five. That in a short time after his enlistment he left Hemstead, early in the morning with the company of Captain Mitchell, and arrived in the City of New York on the evening of the same day. That he belonged to the New York State troops, but the number or particular regiment to which Capt. Mitchell’s company belonged or the names of the regimental officers he cannot at this late day recollect by reason of his age and consequent great failure of memory. He and his company were stationed in the City of New York, where they remained for its defences, when the term of his first enlistment expired.
During this term, nothing occurred as deponent recollects, between the opposing parties, in which he was engaged. And this deponent further declares, that on the first of November 1775, soon after the expiration of the term of his first enlistment he enlisted again in the same company and under the same Captain, for the term of one year. That he was stationed in New York, remained there until the following summer without being engaged in any special military movement. That on the last of July, or beginning of August 1776 he crossed with the American Army over the East [Koveson?] to Long Island in Captain Mitchell’s Company where the company was engaged a number of days in digging intrenchments and throwing up breast works, against the enemy who had landed on the Island At this time. That he was in the battle of Long Island, and stood in the front ranks of the Army at the beginning of the battle which began with the Hessians at Flatbush in the morning and lasted till afternoon, the day being very warm.—That the engagement was very severe, and being overpowered by the superior force of the enemy they were compelled to retreat were soon met by the British Soldiers in the rear, and were driven back to meet the Hessians again, when thus surrounded and exposed to the fire of the enemy on all sides and expecting every moment to be cut to pieces, every man was left to shift for himself and make his escape the best way he could, through waters and mud & mire, some were drowned, some stuck fast and finished in the mine, while others escaped in safety. In this engagement his mess mate was taken prisoner—That soon after the Battles the army retreated, in retreating the deponents company under Captain Mitchell was brought in the rear, and was among the last that crossed over the ferry to New York. Just before they embarked, deponent saw a Lieutenant of another company killed by a shot fired from a British vessel then lying off in the East River—That their arms and ammunition were much injured and almost spoiled by the heavy rains which fell incessantly for two or three days before the battle as they were obliged to stand in their lines without covers—That their retreat was in the night, under the cover of a thick dense fog or mist, which hung over Long Island and most of the time rained hard.—That on the night of the retreat the enemy was heard with their pick Axes and shovels at work, they were so nigh, and soon after the covering party under General Mifflin had left the lines, this deponent saw the British soldiers take possession of the American works.
And this deponent further declares that soon after the retreat of the Army from Long Island they left New York City and retreated to Harlem and to Kings-Bridge. That at Harlem in the Company of Captain Mitchell he was with Troops commanded by General Parsons, and with them was engaged in throwing up breast works for their defence near the East River. About the middle of September, he saw the British Army land near Kipp’s Bay under the fire of the Cannon of a number of their ships of war which which [sic] lay off in the river. That the Americans on seeing the British Troops advance retreated in haste and disorder—That they were met by General Washington, with sword in hand, who ordered them to stop, but in vain, we continued to retreat till we met Col. Glover’s forces who were coming to our assistance. When we marched together and took possession of some high ground in the neighborhood—That while here he went out in a detachment under the command, he believes of Lieut. Col. [Snolton]? and had a skirmish with some Hessians, in which a number was killed, and the Col. thinks this deponent was mortally wounded.
And this deponent further declares, that in a few days from this time he went with the Army, commanded by General Washington, to King’s Bridge and the neighborhoods of White Plains, that the movement was attended with much difficulty, as the soldiers for the want of horses and wagons were obliged to drag the Cannon and carry the baggage and camp equipage by hand and the labor, of course, was very great—That the principal enemy was collected at White Plains in a short time, in the entrenchments which had been thrown up there, and prepared for battle, but does not remember that they engaged the enemy in any general battles, though there was some skirmishing with them.—And this deponent further declares that as the term of his second enlistment for one year had expired November first 1776, he enlisted voluntarily a third time, in the Company of Captain Mitchell, for the term of three years in the defence of his country—Soon after this enlistment he believes that Capt. Mitchell resigned his office & returned home—
The names of the different officers under whom he acted after this, he is unable from loss of memory to recollect, though he can distinctly remember seeing the village or Town at White Plains on fire, and the [?] or town houses burning, and the whole place laid in ashes.
That in a few days after his enlistment the American army left White Plains and deponent was stationed in the neighborhood of Fort Washington under the command, he thinks, of Genl Lee. That on the night before the attack of the British on Fort Washington, he was ordered to cross the river to Fort Lee. That the next day while in Fort Lee, he saw the attack of the enemy on Fort Washington and the capture of that fort.
That he soon left Fort Lee, and retreated with the Army under Generals Washington & Lee through New Jersey, through Newark, Brunswick, Princeton and Trenton and across the Delaware into Pennsylvania—That at this time they were much annoyed by the British, and their sufferings from cold and want of clothing were extreme. That in December he crossed the Delaware again into Jersey, and recollects well the battle of Trenton, although he was not engaged in it, he being stationed and remaining with another part of the army. That a few days after the battle at Trenton, this deponent marched in the night with the Army under General Washington to Princeton and arrived near that place before the break of day, where they engaged the enemy, with success, in the engagement General Marcy or Marcer he saw fall, severely and mortally wounded, and heard him exclaim as he fell “fight on my brave boys the day is our own”.—That during this deponent’s service in New Jersey, but at what time or what place he is unable to state, he was engaged in a skirmish or fight with the British in which there were fourteen Americans, killed and near one hundred of the enemy.—The night was exceedingly dark and the hostile parties separated from each other by a thick narrow strip of wood; They rested on their arms till morning when the fight commenced, the result of which was as above stated—the dead were all buried in one common grave. This deponent further saith that early in January 1777, the campaign being closed, the main body of the army marched he believes, into winter quarters at Morristown New Jersey, while a detachment to which the deponent belonged went to Fishkill and remained there until the ensuing spring under the Command of Col. John Lamb.
That during this time nothing particular occurred, as this deponent recollects, worthy of special notice, until the latter part of April 1777, when intelligence was received that General Howe had ordered An expedition to be undertaken under the command of Gov. Tryon, for the purpose of destroying a large quantity of Stores and provisions, deposited in the Town of Danbury, and the vicinity—For the purpose of assisting in the defence of the Town and the provisions this deponent left Fishkill under Col. lamb and proceeded to Danbury where a force was collected under General Arnold. That when he arrived he saw several houses burning & the grease of the pork and beef deposited in them streaming along on the ground—That they Attacked the enemy and in the engagement General Arnold had his horse shot dead under him, Col. Lamb was wounded by a grape shot, and a number of the Americans were killed—That after the enemy left that quarter he returned again to Fishkill where he continued some times. That after his return from Danbury to FishKill he was stationed there to assist in securing the Posts in the highlands and thereby preventing the enemy going up the North River.—That some time in the summer he went to Peekskill to aid in the defence of that Post, which believes at that time was under the command of General Punam [Putnam]. That when the British came up the river he left Peekill [Peekskill] And under Col. Lamb, he thinks, went with a detachment to Fort Montgomery to reinforce the garrison, but the same day on which they arrived in the neighborhood, the Fort was taken by the British, but not without a desperate resistance. That when the enemy had taken this Fort, and some other strong places their ships passed up the river in full sight—
And this deponent further declares, that after the capture of the Fort on the river, he was detached with other troops, under the command of Col. John Lamb, and Col. John Malcom or Markam, to reinforce and assist the Army under General Gates and Arnold, then encamped at Saratoga. That while on their march and before they arrived to the camp, they heard that Burgoyne was taken, which gave them very great joy—on receiving this pleasing and unexpected intelligence, they discontinued their march, and returned to Red Hook, where he and his company spent several weeks.—
That if he recollects right, about this time two British ships and some other vessels in the river were taken and burnt with all their stores—That on their return they took a tender on other British ship or vessel, that accompanied those that had sailed up the river. The Tender with other ships lay at Anchor, and while endeavouring to leave the place of Anchorage ran aground. A cannon was brought to the Bank of the river and a fire commenced upon her, when after a few discharges she surrendered. Deponent expected to have received some prize money but never did receive Any—That after leaving Red Hook, the weather becoming cold, and the enemy having sailed down the river to New York, they returned to Fishkill and went he thinks into the Barracks, where they took up their winter quarters.—That while he continued at Fishkill during the winter of 1778 he received permission several time to go on furlough to visit his mother, who resided in the vicinity of their encampment.—And this deponent further declares, that he continued in this place with the force stationed here for the denfence [defense] of the pass through the highlands and that when, General gates came here in May or June and took the command of the forces then at Fishkill, a part of them were sent to White Plains, some went to work on the forts and particularly at West Point, where they were some time employed, while some remained at Fish-Kill. The Deponent was among the latter; where he spent the summer, According to the best of his recollection. That nothing as the deponent remembers took place in the part of the Country, which called him and his fellow soldiers in to action during this season—That he spent his winter quarters in 1778 and 1779 in New Winsor [Windsor] with a part of the army encamped there at that time.—And this Deponent further saith, that in the summer and fall of 1779, he was engaged in an expedition Against the Indians, or the frontiers in the Western part of the State of New York.—That the forces were at this time under the Command of General Sullivan, and that he belonged to the company and was under the command of Capt. James Wood. That soon after they left Clark’s-Town, on this expedition, they perceived traces of the Indians, by the corn and potatoes which they had destroyed.—And this deponent further states, that their marches through the wilderness were long and tedious, and that their privations and sufferings were very great, that their course was over many streams and brooks, some of which were quite deep and wide, and also through much woods, thick briars, and underbrush, and almost impassible—That they were obliged to sleep night upon the cold And naked ground, with their cartridge Boxes for their pillows, and their muskets by their sides, with nothing but their blankets to cover their bodies from the rains and winds of the open heavens—That the savages fled before them, and that he does not recollect any particular engagement with Indians though he thinks they had one. That when they gave up the pursuit of the foe, they suffered greatly on their return home, from cold And hunger, being confined for eight or ten days on half their allowance, and the three last days they were without any sustenance whatsoever. That on emerging from the wilderness a field containing some green pumpkins was seen, which were quickly devoured by himself and his starving companions.—That he returned in safety; and while recruiting himself from the fatigues and exposures of the expedition his term of enlistment expired—That he then returned home where he remained for several months, until he enlisted again under General Swarthout, and was stationed at West Point for some time, where he continued until nearly the close of the war, and until the term of his enlistment expired, and he was regularly discharged.
And this deponent further declares that he well recollects the capture of Major Andre, and the Treason of General Arnold, who was at this time the Commander at West Point.—That this deponent was employed in dismounting the cannon previous to the discover of the plot, and after its discovery in again replacing them—That he saw Andre before he went away from the fort, but did not suspect his business or his character, being At this time engaged in the arduous and severe labors of dismounting the Cannon.
And this deponent further declares that soon after the conclusion of the war, he removed from Poughkeepsie to the Town of Southold on the east end of Long Island, having married his wife in that place. That he continued to reside in that Towne, with the exception of a short time on Shelter Island until the spring of 1812, when he removed to Sag Harbor, where he has resided ever since, and where he now resides. And this deponent further declares that he enlisted voluntarily at each time, and that, At the expiration of his several terms of service, he received a regular discharge, that the discharges which he received are not lost and cannot be produced, since deponent thought, that they never would be of any value or service to him, and therefore neglected to preserve them—And this deponent further states, that he has in his possession no written or documentary evidence of any kind, which he can produce to confirm this Declaration.
That there are, at this time, two men living viz, Robert Kidney, a resident of Poughkeepsie and Peter Lansing a resident of Hyde Park, who knew the deponent, while in, and after he left the army, and whose depositions are hereunto annexed—And this deponent further declares that one of his companions in the Army was John Jones of Cold Spring on Long Island, And that he deponent had two brothers in the army with him, named John Jonson, A Lieutenant And Samuel Jonson a Serjeant, both of whom died some years ago—That the names of the only officers besides those already mentioned are General Scott, Ajutant Elm or Ellum.
And this deponent further declares that from weakness And failure of memory, incident to old age, he is unable to recollect the names of other of his commanders or officers, except those most distinguished and universally known, such as General Washington, Lee, Putnam, Gates, and Arnold; and that this Declaration is as specific and uncumstantial as at this distance of time he is able to give.
And this deponent further states that the term of his last enlistment was nine months; and that the whole amount of the several terms of enlistment which he served as a soldier of the revolution was five years and two months. And this deponent further declares, that the only reason why he did not make an earlier application for a Pension, was his inability to find, now living any of his contemporary associates or acquaintance who knew him as a soldier of the Revolution, and could testify as witnesses to the correctness of his declaration.—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. (Signed) Jacob Jonson
Sworn and subscribed the day and year aforesaid before me Aug 24, 1839, Hugh Halsey First Judge of the Court of Comm Pleas Suffolk County NY.
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