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Posts Tagged ‘Grubbs Churchyard’

Framed and on the wall in my office is a DAR application that my Grandmother filled out many, many years ago. She was going to join the DAR but never got around to it. At one point she tore the application in half, but my father rescued it and had it framed in the 1970’s. It was passed on to me in the hopes that I would join. I never have.

The application states that our ancestor,

  • Joseph Britton enlisted in Limerick Township, Montgomery Co., Pa. in the spring of 1776 in Capt. Caleb North’s Co, in Col. Anthony Wayne’s Pa Reg. and served until the spring of 1777. 
  • Lieutenant Jos. Briton appears on the rolls of returned Officers of Malitia (sic) in the County Of Philadelphia Pa. Tues July 3, 1792 (Executive minutes 1790 & 1817 Pa. Archives. Vol IV, 6th Series, page 114) 
  • Joseph Britton applied for liberty to raise a company of minute men; which was granted Oct. 9, 1775 (American Archives, 4th Series, Vol. IV, page 1729
  • Joseph Britton was a Captain in Col. Gist’s Pa. Reg. 1778. He applied for a pension May 20, 1818 at which time he was 63 years old and a resident of Union Co., Pa.
 There are only two sentences on that application that are factual; the first one and the last one. He did serve, but not as a Captain or Lieutenant, but a mere Private. You see, Joseph Britton was illiterate. He signed his own will with an “X“. This is not to say that he is not a hero, because he is. Any foot soldier who states under oath that “After being enlisted and taken to Ticontoraga (sic) being there in the winter laying in tents where he had his feet frosted and got criplet(sic)*” is a hero in my book, be it my ancestor or yours!

Joseph Britton’s headstone can be found in Grubbs Churchyard, Port Trevorton, Snyder County, Pennsylvania. There is no doubt that Joseph was one of the earliest settler’s in this area of Snyder County. The question as to “when” is up for grabs, however.

Joseph married Hannah Frane on Christmas Day, 1790 in Montgomery County. At some undetermined point he left that area and settled in Snyder County.

According to his service record, he enlisted in Limerick Township, Montgomery County in 1776. Another reference lists earliest settlers in the area and states: “. . . Then Henry Rine about 1763, Joseph Britian, Adam Nerhood, Frederick Kreitzer, Peter Lahr, who came among the earlier pioners into this section.**” It is uncomprehensible that Joseph would settle in Snyder County, and then travel to Montgomery County to enlist. More logical would be he settled in this county with his young family after he completed his service to our new country, since he did not purchase his property until 28 April 1812, the date the property was conveyed to him by Andrew and Susanna Mittour.

Regardless of when he settled in the area, he was a farmer, as were most in the area during that period, and a father of two girls. His oldest daughter, Mary, was my ancestor. By the end of 1820 he was disabled, almost penniless and owed over $200. He states”I have no family except my wife, Hannah aged about 50 years, and I am now by old age and bodily infirmities unable to support myself without the assistance from my country.” He had to itemize exactly what he owned:

  • 1 piece of land about 70 acres of Hill land valued at 3 per acre
  • 1 bed and bedstead
  • 1 Table and two potts
  • 1/2 Dozen of knives & forks 1/2 dozen of Delf plates
  • 3 Dishes Earthen
  • 1 Stove
  • 2 Horses old
  • Horse  Geers
  • 2 Cows
  • 2 Calves
  • 1 Plough and Harrow
  • 1 Old Wagon
  • 4 small Hogs
By 1827 he was no longer “to pursue his occupation being afflicted with rheumatism and nearly blind.” He died three short years later on 26 September 1830 and is buried in the Graveyard of the Church he attended. When my grandmother filled out that error filled application his headstone said “He was a Revoluntionary War Soldier” Although a factual statement, the stone that marks his passage no longer says that. When the headstone was replaced is not known.
What is known is that Joseph Britton was a true patriot and fought for the liberties we enjoy today. For that reason, I’ve decided his should be
Linda’s Headstone of the Week; Week #6
*30 May 1818, Court of Common Pleas, Union County, Pennsylvania, Associate Judge, J. Bolander
**”The History of Grubb’s Church,” Snyder County Historical Society, 11 August 1948,

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grubbs

My headstone of the week isn’t.  My headstone of the week is actually headstones of the week!  I found these four, unmarked, worn headstones in Grubbs Churchyard in Chapman Township, Snyder County, Pennsylvania.  My 5th great grandfather, his wife, their daughter and her husband (my 4th great grandparents) are buried in this cemetery, however these are not their headstones. 

I have no idea who these markers memorialize, but I was taken by the simplicity and sameness of them.

Linda’s headstone of the week; Week #23

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