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British Surrender at Saratoga: October 17, 1777

Gates believes Burgoyne will soon launch an attack
On October 17, 1777, British and German troops under British general John Burgoyne surrendered to American general Horatio Gates, turning the tide of the Revolutionary War in the Americans’ favor.

In the summer of 1777, Burgoyne commenced his plan to lead his army down from Canada through upstate New York to meet up in Albany with other British troops moving in from the south and west. By doing so, he hoped to isolate New England and prevent it from presenting a united war effort with the other colonies.

However, near Saratoga the Americans had dug in, hoping to stall Burgoyne’s progress. On September 19, Burgoyne launched an attack, known as the Battle of Freeman’s Farm. Though at battle’s end the British commanded the field, they suffered much higher losses than the Americans, who outnumbered the British by several thousand and were also receiving a constant stream of new militia troops.

Burgoyne decided not to immediately attack the Americans again, perhaps waiting for word of the movements of fellow British general Henry Clinton. Finally, with supplies running low, Burgoyne began his attack in the Battle of Bemis Heights on October 7. This time it was the Americans who were victorious, led to success in large part by General Benedict Arnold, who, though previously dismissed by Gates, returned to the battlefield to rally the troops.

Terms of Surrender between Gates and Burgoyne at Saratoga

Burgoyne realized that at this point his two options were to retreat or surrender. He originally planned to retreat but discovered his path had been blocked by a contingent of Americans. Reluctantly, he agreed to surrender. After some back and forth between Burgoyne and Gates as to the terms, Burgoyne finally surrendered his army on October 17

Under the fairly generous terms of surrender, the British and Germans were to give up their weapons to their own officers after leaving camp. Then the troops were to march to Boston, where they were to return to England and never again fight in the war. (Congress, however, would later renege on this part of the agreement, and the troops remained prisoners of war for years.)

The American victory at Saratoga proved a pivotal event in the war. The victory led the French to openly side with the Americans a few months later, providing crucial funds, supplies, weapons, troops, and naval support.

Did you have any ancestors who fought in the Battles of Saratoga? Tell us about it! If you want to learn more about the battles and subsequent surrender, start a search on Fold3.

139 Comments

  1. My third great grandfather was, according to family lore, a member of Burgoyne’s Army. He reportedly was taken captive at Saratoga and became part of the Convention Army. Richard Spicer eventually settled in Pennsylvania and remained there for the rest of his life. His daughter Elizabeth married Adam Bowman, and they moved to Stark County, Ohio, to raise their family. Adam and Elizabeth are buried in a German Baptist Cemetery in Freeburg, Ohio, near Alliance. The family has not been able to confirm the military details. Have there been any published materials that followed the Convention Army?

  2. Years after the war, my mother’s ggf owned the house in Schuylerville in which the Baroness Reidesel took refuge with her children. She later wrote a memoir about her experiences when she accompanied her husband the Baron during his service in the war here. The house has remained in the family and is still known by the family name. It is the only building remaining that bore witness to the battles there. Also, I am a Hess on my father’s side and cannot trace his side of my ancestry past my ggf.

    • There’s a website for surnames, with my husbands last name being Smith,
      We had become stuck with his gff name and place was michigan! We wrote the linage below. Him that was brothers and sisters! From that someone
      From surnames contacted us with information and pictures going back to the
      Revolutionary War. His cousin had so much information and pages of info.
      We found out that the Tavern is still Open Its a 5 star eatery in NY. However,
      He was a royalist and hung, it took 3 attempts, he had fought in the French-Indian war.etc. and also the DNA Ancestary test is connecting me to my relatives. My courthouses were burned by Sherman in Civil War! Hope this helps. JUST remember to look back every month,

    • My husband is a Hess Family member : Would Love to talk:)

    • Edith Slavic contact us:)

    • I know this house well. I grew up in Schuylerville, NY. It is the Marshall House. Abram Marshall settled on this property in the year 1763 or 1764. With the advance of Burgoyne, he and his family went to Albany for safety. The house was used by the British army for a hospital. Madam Riedesel nursed wounded British officers in the cellar of the house. This house is just up the road from my family home on North Broad Street in Schuylerville. Our family house was built in 1863 or 1864 by Alanson Welch, a descendant of Joseph Welch who settled on that land between 1765 and 1770. This land was the site of British barracks. The house is still in our family.

      My family has lived in that area since the 1700s. I am a direct descendant of Charles Moore who settled in Stillwater, NY. In 1770 he married Esther Bidwell, daughter of David Bidwell who settled in Stillwater around 1762. Charles Moore and his brothers fought in the American Army at Saratoga. His sister Tryphena Moore was married to Jotham Bemus of Bemus’ Heights (sometimes spelled Bemis). My Moore ancestors were well represented at the Battle of Saratoga.

    • Hello Nancy Drew Novak, I’m related to Jotham and have read the accounts of the battle’s of Saratoga and of Jotham’s family’s involvment during the battles. Tryphena Moore Bemus(Bemis) is described as Scottish of a educated and cultured nature.Jotham was from the Massachusetts based Bemis family of the original American immigrant(1640) progenitor Joseph Bemis of Watertown, MA.from Dedham,Essex UK. Jotham was looking for opportunity and traveled along the Hudson until he settled on the West side and was involved in farming,livestock and owned the tavern at Bemis Heights which was Gen. Gates original HQ. Here’s some further info of The Bemis family and Jotham
      “The Bemis History and Genealogy” by Colonel Thomas Waln-Morgan Draper,1900,
      published San Francisco, California, copies in the Library of Congress, p.
      37-40.

      “(This Branch of the family write the name Bemus, substituting the ‘u’ for the
      ‘i’; and I shall write the name as they do whilst treating of them, although
      believing it to be a corruption of the name.
      For the data on this Branch, I am almost wholly indebted to Captain Daniel
      Hazeltine Post of Jamestown, N.Y., who being a descendant himself took a great
      interest in the matter; In June 1894, he published a most interesting
      genealogical pamphlet entitled “Jotham Bemus of Bemus Heights;” and which with
      Capt. Post’s permission I make the basis of what follows, as to the
      descendants of Jotham Bemus.

      Considerable interest naturally attaches to the family which owned and
      occupied the ground chosen by General Gates, on the advice of Count Kosciusko,
      for the American defensive works against Burgoyne’s onward march in 1777; in
      view of the fact that the family name became forever associated with the
      important battles fought in the vicinity, and that members of the family took
      part in them upon the American side, literally defending their home and
      fireside.

      At the time above referred to, Jotham Bemus, his wife and six children were
      living on the west bank of the Hudson river, about four miles north of the
      village of Stillwater. He was a farmer energetic and enterprising, engaging
      in buying cattle and in other traffic, and evidently a man in easy
      circumstances. He kept the only Tavern of any note between Albany and Fort
      Edward, as Lossing relates in his “Field Book of the Revolution” Vo.. I. p.
      45. According to the English M.S.S. in the N.Y. State Library p. 827. he was
      in 1774 a Justice of the Peace.

      He was born about 1738, and at the time of the Burgoyne campaign about 40
      years old. He is described as of stout build and of a vigorous and determined
      character. From Charles Neilson’s account of Burgoyne’s campaign, published
      in 1844 p. 289. he states that Bemus’s house was the only frame dwelling
      included within the military operations at the Heights, it being on the road
      from Albany to Whitehall.

      At the time of the Battle of Saratoga, Sep. 19, 1777, the family had been
      residents of the vicinity for at least seventeen years, for the Calendar of
      Land Papers, N.Y. State Library 164. Sept. 9, 1763. p. 325. records, that in
      1760, the families of Bemus, Griffith and Park, were occupying land in this
      region.

      In the Battles occuring near the Heights, Jotham Bemus and three of his sons
      undoubtedly took part. This was always been a family tradition and much
      evidence exists to prove its truth. William Marvin of North East Pa., a
      descendant of Jotham Bemus, writes (in 1894) that he has heard William Bemus,
      son of Jotham senior, relate his army experiences. Jotham Bemis jr., the
      first child of Jotham sen., certainly was in the American Army as shown by the
      Archives of New York Vol. I. p. 250 viz:

      “Bemus Jotham, Corpl. Rhode Island Regt., Jeremiah Olney, Lt. Col. Commanding,
      enlisted in Col. Van Schaick’s for 1 year ’76. Served 6 yrs. 1 month, 10
      days. Discharged by General Washington Jan. 15, 1783. A.P. 17-62. Town of
      Saratoga, badge of merit.”

      William Bemus, the second child of Jotham Bemus, sen. was a member of Captain
      Ephraim Woodworths Company, the 4th in the 13th Regiment, Saratoga District,
      commanded by Colonel van Veghten, who was on Genrl. Gates staff. Captain
      Woodworth was a neighbor of the Bemus’s, his house about half a mile back of
      theirs being used by Genrl. Gates as headquarters, after he left the Bemus
      house. Col. John McCrea at one time commanded the Saratoga Regiment, the
      tragic fate of whose sister Jane McCrea, formed a leading incident of the
      Burgoyne campaign. See N.Y. Archives Vol. I. p. p. 271 and 322.

      That the third son, John, also took part in the struggle is evident from the
      following extract from his obituary notice published in the Saratoga Sentinel
      Sept. 15, 1829. “Though young he was in the American service at the capture
      of Burgoyne, as a teamster.”

      The home of Jotham Bemus was used as Headquarters by Genrl. Gates for a time.
      With the extension of the American fortifications after the first battle,
      Genrl. Gates moved on to the Heights and into Captain Ephraim Woodworth’s
      house. Genrl. Lincoln, after the battle of the 19th used the Bemus house as
      headquaters. The fate of the house is established by a letter from the Rev.
      S. Hawley Adams of Jamestown, N.Y. printed in Stones “Burgoyne Ballads,” in
      which he says: “My grandmother, Salley Bemus Crawford, (daughter of Jotham
      Bemus Sen.) was born at Bemus Heights May 1768. ***she has spent hours in
      telling me of Burgoyne and his army, which she saw; ” of the burning of her
      father’s house by the British, and of the sufferings of the family for a time,
      while they were wintering in a barn–Burgoyne having destroyed all their
      buildings and crops.” Though no mention of the destruction of the house
      appears in any of the accounts of the battles, it is evident that it was
      burned in some foray of the enemy after it had been abandoned by Genrls. Gates
      and Lincoln as headquarters. It was on the extreme flank of the American
      lines, and probably more or less unprotected after the first days of fighting,
      the troops being massed at some distance from the river, near Fort Neilson.

      The site of the Bemus house is now marked by a stone tablet bearing the
      following inscription:
      _____________________
      |SARATOGA, 1777 |
      | ————————- |
      | The Site of |
      | |
      |BEMUS’S TAVERN |
      | ———————– |
      | The gift of |
      |Giles B. Slocum |
      |_____________________|

      The Bemus Heights Farm is now the property of the Hon. James B. Jermain of
      Albany, N.Y.

      Jotham Bemus, Sen. who was born about 1738, died, it is believed about 1786,
      at the age of 48 years. This date is thought too early by some of the family.
      His first wife was Tryphena Moore, who was of Scotch descent. She was a woman
      of much refinement and culture. His 2nd wife’s name is unknown.”

    • Thank you to Keith for your information on the Bemis (Bemus) family. The only information I had was from the book, Andrw Moore and his Descendants by Horace L. Moore which was published in 1903. In that book it states that Jotham and Tryphena had four children: (1) Jotham who was a corporal in Lieutenant Colonel Jeremiah Olney’s Regiment of Rhode Island troops; enlisted in Col. Van Schaick’s Regiment for one year in 1776. He served 6 years, 1 month and 10 days; was discharged by Washington , Jan 15, 1783. In 1805 he bought land in the
      township of Hamburg, Erie County, NY. He was one of the first grand jury that met west of the Genesee River, in 1803, at Batavia, NY. He was in The War of 1812 and died from sickness contracted there. He married Asenath Andress and had four daughters- Lydia, Tryphena, Annie and Sallie. (2) William Bemus , b. Feb. 25, 1762; d. at Bemus Point, Chautauqua County, NY, Jan. 20, 1830. He married Mary Prendergast, Jan. 29, 1782. She was born in Pauling, Dutchess County, NY March 13, 1760 and died July 11, 1845. The family settled at Bemus Point in 1806. They had 7 children. (3) John Bemus born in 1763 at Bemus Heights, died without issue – no other information given. (4) Sally Bemus was born May 6, 1768. She. married Daniel Crawford, Saratoga Springs, March 22, 1789; died June 8, 1865 at Evansville, Ind. She is buried at Saratoga Springs, beside her husband. He died 1839, aged 75 years. They had 8 children. This is all the information I have from this book.

      The comment about Tryphena being Scottish was quite interesting. I have done extensive research on all branches of my mother’s family. All go back to England. They came to America in the 1600s. I am a direct descendant of 17 founders of the Colony of Connecticut, all from England. ( You know how all the original settlers married each other because there were few families.) I suppose it is possible, but I wonder where the Scottish is coming from.

    • I am a descendant of the Hess family from the Mohawk Valley. Is this the same family?

      Valerie Jones

  3. My 5th great grandfather (Wilhelm von Bischhausen) was a lieutenant of the Hessian Crownprince-Regiment and was taken prisoner in Saratoga, together with General Riedesel and many other officers. After he was released, he went back to Germany and died there in 1790. His son Gustav Carl, my 4th great grandfather, born 1783, emigrated to Chile in 1852.

  4. My 4th great grandfather, Daniel Prince, was on the British side. Marching back to Boston he dropped out in western Massachusetts and became a farmer. He married Mary Packard. Their first child, Mehitable Prince, married Amos Parsons, son of Lemuel Parsons who fought on the American side.

    • Is this Daniel Prince who lived in TN. and also a Rev. Peter Prince married a Sarah Parsons. this Peter Prince had a sister ,Mary who m. Lewis Lane and settled Hamilton Co, IL. Sarah Parsons father may be a William Parsons who lived Cravens Co. N, C. . There is mentioned in family history a Daniel and a Joel Prince.

      We have never been able to find the link that gave Rev. Peter Prince’s father and mother. would very much appreciate any inf. on this family. Send ans. to the e-mail above.

    • No, I don’t think this Daniel Prince ever left Massachusetts after he settled there. He is in the census reports starting with 1790.

  5. Had B Arnold been killed there, & he came close, there would be statues, towns & schools named after him all over the country.

    • As I recall there is a statue at Saratoga — but it is of just his boot, as he was wounded in the leg, and he is merely eluded to on the inscription… See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boot_Monument

    • Ron, You and author Kenneth Roberts would be in complete agreement on that matter. Arnold came close to buying it during the American attack on Quebec which would have had same result.

    • B Arnold is my 4th cousin 6X removed… while I certainly donʻt condone what he did I was delighted to finally be able to prove a family story I heard thru all my growing up years…

    • TO ALL YOU IN SOME WAY RELATED TO A RELATIVE WHO WAS ON THE BRITISH SIDE OR A RELATIVE WHO WAS AGAINST THE AMERICAN SIDE, I JUST WANT TO SAY THE FOLLOWING..
      IN OUR FAMILY HISTORY IN EVERYONE THERE IS A RELATIVE WHO IS ON THE BAD SIDE ONE WAY OR ANOTHER..
      FOR ME I KNOW EVERYONE KNOWS “”PRETTY BOY FLOYD”‘ MY RELATIVE. HIS INTENSION FOR WHAT HE DID WAS TO BE A ROBIN HOOD.. ROB FROM THE RICH AND GIVE TO THE POOR. MANY FARMERS WOULD HAVE LOST THEIR FARMS DUE TO BANKS FORECLOSING ON THEIR LAND..,BUT IN REALITY IT WAS AGAINST THE LAW AND EVERYONE KNEW IT…
      BUT TO LYNDA THOUGH BENEDICT ARNOLD IS RELATED TO YOU DON’T BE ASHAMED BUT BE THANKFUL YOU ARE PART OF HISTORY AS WELL AS ANYONE YOU HAS A RELATIVE AGAINST THE LAW FOR RIGHT BUT FOR UNKNOWN REASONS TO THEM..
      BE HAPPY TO BE RELATED TO SOMEONE AND YOUR FUTURE RELATIVES CAN BE HAPPY TO BE PART OF.

    • Thank you for your reply, Virginia… but to be clear, I am not ashamed of this ancestral connection. I donʻt agree with what he did but in learning about Benedict I have a better idea of why he did it…

    • My ancestor lived in Norwich, CT at the same time as Benedict Arnold. Do you have any information of the militia that he commanded? From oral history William Loudon and his bother-in-law Elijah Yeomans served together in the militia, but have not found any documentation to confirm this. William and Elijah may also have served with maternal cousins, Downer.

    • No, Iʻm sorry… I donʻt…

    • Lynda — Have you read “Defiant Brides” by Nancy Rubin Stewart? It is a double biography of Peggy Shippen (Mrs. Benedict Arnold) and Lucy Flucker (Mrs. Henry Knox). There is a very dramatic description of the unraveling of the West Point plot, Arnold’s escape and the way Peggy handled the aftermath.
      http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15798776-defiant-brides

    • No, I havenʻt… thank you for recommending it… it sounds very interesting… will have to check it out…

  6. Hello, My name is Steve Hollands and I too my have an ancestor who may have fought at the battle of Saratoga. I have read that the 3rd Westchester County Militia under Col. Samuel Drake may have been at Saratoga. Does anyone know if they were there? If so then my 6th Great-Grandfather,CALEB HALL may served at the battle of Saratoga.

  7. My 4th great grandfather, William “Tankard” Maus was driving a team of horses to deliver a wagon load of supplies to the British the day before the Battle of Saratoga. Militia troops intercepted the delivery, scared the horsess, and Tankard escaped on foot during the confusion. He was working for his benefactor, Henry Van Schaack, from Kinderhook. Henry V S had bought Tankard back from captivity with the Indians for a silver tankard, hence the name. Tankard’s parents and three siblings were believed to have been kiiled at the Fort Seybert massacre in Virginia, now West Virginia, during the French and Indians War on April 28, 1758.

  8. My Great (5) Grandfather was a Minuteman and after Bunker Hill he was with Gen. Arnold chasing Burgoyne which lead to his surrender.

  9. Are there names for the German troops who were held captive?

    • There is a good book, “Brunswick Troops in North America 1776-1783” by Claus Reuter (subtitled “Index of all Soldiers who Remained in North America”), published by Heritage Books, Inc. 1999. My ggg grandfather was Johann Hintersass, from Windersheim, who disappeared after being a prisoner of war, and turned up in Williamstown, MA, where records show he had changed his name to John Henderson. He settled in Williamstown, married to Hester Wright, daughter of Miles and silence Wright.

  10. We’re there names for the Germans who were held captive?

    • I have a partial list of the German Soldiers

    • Any Starkey or Hamon names? Thanks

    • Any Harmon’s or Starkeys? I know my Dunns were active in the RW and JohnDunn fought “on the frontiers”, but that is about all.

    • All I have of the German soldiers is a one page list
      Habermann, Juergen Paul Birthplace Gotha age 20 A Canada 1781
      Haeberle, Johann Birthplace Grund age 26 A Yorktown 1778
      Haeberlein, Matthias Birthplace Eichstedt age 21/04 C Canada 1783
      Hommelmann, Johann Birthplace Culmbach age 32/06 Dishonerably discharged at Penobscot 1783
      Hottelmann, Hans Birthplace Bodenstedt age 43 C Canada
      Luttmann, Johann Birthplace Schwegare age 21 E
      Weber,Heinrich Birthplace Braunachweig age
      42/10 E
      Weber, Johann Birthplace Solms-Braunfels age 45/06 F
      Weber, Nicholas Birthplace Alsace age 48/07 E
      Weber, Peter Birthplace Heyl age 27/00 C Canada
      Weber, Johann Birthplace Oettlinggen age 23/00 C Canada 1783
      Weber, Jon Georg Birthplace HempenfeldNuernberg age 29/08 C Canada

      A= Deserter
      B=In the service of the American enemy
      C=Discharged when in Canada
      D=Prisoner of war
      E=Prisoner whereabouts unknown
      F=Transferred to Civil Service-possibly disability discharge
      Winterhill Camp

  11. Love to learn more about the Van Schaack’s family involvement. Understand that after Gen. Burgoyne was captured he was taken to patriot Van Schaick family’s home on Van Schaick Island, New York, then taken to Kinderhook, New York where loyalist family Van Schaack’s toasted at dinner with, “long live the King.”
    What problems then arose. Understand the loyalist family returned to England, then returned later to New York where Peter Van Schaack wrote the Civil laws for New York.
    Please visit the homes of both Van Schaick and Van Schaack
    in New York. What history.

    • A very interesting book was written about the regiment commanded by Goose Van Schaick, which I think may have been based on some private papers of his that came to light back around the time of the US Bicentennial. I think this is the book I’m thinking of:
      http://www.worldcat.org/title/history-of-the-first-new-york-regiment-1775-1783/oclc/7419014

      (At the time of the Revolution, many of the American regimental records were not considered to be government property, but the private property of the individual commanders, so lots of them disappeared into people’s attics rather than into state or federal archives after the war ended.)

  12. Some where in these battles for freedom was the Father of John Lambert born 1770? although not knowing his name i have been searching for him for years, so far i have found no Lambert’s during that time?

  13. My 6th great-grandfather, August Heinrich Lortz, was a baggage handler with the Brunswick Troops. He was captured at the Battle of Saratoga, and while being marched south, escaped and made his way to Maine, probably looking for the German settlement. His name was eventually anglicized to “Henry Lords.” He married Molly Stimson, daughter of Ephraim Stimson and Mary Sands about 1777 in Maine. He was christened on 1 Nov 1751 at Zellerfeld, Hannover, Prussia, making him about 26 years old at the time of his capture. He died 30 May 1830 in Prospect, Waldo County, Maine at the age of 79.

  14. Were British troops who were imprisoned named anywhere along with Germans?

  15. My ancestors in the Battle include both Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold.

    • Ethan Allen was taken prisoner at Montreal on Sept. 24, 1775 and was released in a prisoner exchange on May 3, 1778 from New York City. His brother, Capt. Ira Allen was at the Battle of Bennington and was in the Saratoga theater.

    • Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold — what a combination!

  16. I appreciate how a goodly portion of the ancestors mentioned here were on the “other” side at the battle and how their desertions from the Convention army or other armies helped people our land. Benedict Arnold is even more of a paradox. Our guy, Ezra Tilden, mentioned in my first post was at Camp Totowa in NJ when Major Andre was hung. They could not get their rope on Arnold, but they got him. Unfortunately, our Ezra Tilden had stopped recording day-by-day details of his service that late in the war, but was copying down pages of popular songs and poems of the period. Therefore, his later diary is not nearly as informative as the one the Stoughton Mass. Historical Society has published, but he does have some decent detail of his trek to Claverick, NY in 1779. Some of his companions throughout the war were local native-Americans, which makes for another interesting study.

  17. To Judy Smith, post of October 5, 2015 at 1:08 am: My 2nd ggf was William B Smith born in Franklin County, GA in 1820. He lived near Chattanooga (1832) and several places in northwestern GA including Gilmer County (1860), Paulding County (1870) and dying in Douglas County GA in 1880. He was a famous American Indian trained herbal healer. Please send the ” website for surnames” and the contacts that provided you information.
    Thanks,
    Jim Boyter

  18. My 5great grandfather Joseph Staples of Virginia was with Daniel Morgan at the Battle of Saratoga. He is listed as a private on the company pay rolls for Capt. Samuel Jordan Cabell’s Co. of detached Riflemen, commanded by Col. Daniel Morgan, from August 1 to Nov. 1, 1777. Morgan’s riflemen played an important part in the battle.

    Following the battle, Capt. Cabell was promoted to major. Benjamin Taliaferro took over as captain. Joseph Staples is listed as a private on the company pay roll of Capt. Benjamin Taliaferro’s Co. of detached Riflemen, commanded by Col. Daniel Morgan, and on a 1777 pay roll “for the extra month’s pay allowed by the honorable the Continental Congress.”

    Joseph Staples was appointed Sergeant on Jan. 6, 1778 (Samuel J. Cabell’s affidavit, Nov. 26, 1783).

  19. A distant cousin, Dana T. Murry (1853-1938), wrote a statement dated July 7, 1918, Greene, Maine, telling of his great-grandfather, John Murry of Scotland, who was “pressed into the British Ranks in the time of the Revolution and came to America with Burgoyne’s Army. John Murry did not believe that the English had any right to rule the American people and his sympathy was with the colonists.” He goes on to describe how John Murray managed to escape from British troops camped in winter quarters near Lake Champlain in Canada. He tells how John started out across the ice through the cold winter night for the Vermont shore and Liberty. About the fourth day as night fell, he discovered a light far ahead on the lake. Guided by this light he walked on and found it came from a small island on which stood a solitary home in which lived a family named Bean. They took him in and cared for him. After staying with them a few days and getting well rested, he went to Vermont, enlisted in the American Army and was in Arnold’s division at the battle of Saratoga.

    John Murray was my fourth great-grandfather. After the war John married Rachel Bixby Stevens and had a family. John’s oldest son, Amos Murry (the writer, Dana T. Murry’s grandfather), was born in Vermont, as were all of their children, including my third great-grandmother, Rachel Murray. The family later settled in the town of Leeds, Maine, where my second great-grandmother, Roxy Manning Brown was born in 1820.

  20. One of my Vandenberg ancestors had buildings on his farm burned by the British.

  21. Any info on Col. John Tipton or Tipton ancestors in this period?

  22. It was interesting to read all the replies. The American Rev. War was a civil war. We were fighting one another as well as the British. It was interesting to see how people changed their names for obvious reasons. My ancestor according to oral tradition, “he fought the entire Revolutinary war.” This was later proved by records. He was in the N.C. Continental Army under Col. Buncombe whose commander was Lafayette, whose commander was Washington. He then returns to S.C. and fights under Daniel Morgan and Nathanel Greene. His last battle is Eutaw Springs in S.C. His name was William Ruben Briant. He was my fourth great grandfather. He was a southern version of Robert Plum Martin. He died in the 1830’s His pension read that his networth was about 60 dollars, which included his “riflegun”. He was one of nine patriots that served in my ancestry.

  23. My 5th great grandfather Henry Browne was with the 1st Virginia State Militia and was at Valley Forge winter 77-78.
    I would need to see the Order of Battle to state with some certainty
    His grandson Major Thomas Weldon Radcliffe was head if Co A 15th SC Infantry Regiment at Antietam the quartermaster. His son Thomas was killed in battle with the 4th SC Cavalry, in VA 1864.

  24. any male Hess family descendants that have Hapalog group IM-223( formerly I2b1) need to contact me to compare data. Some Hess names were changed to Hiss, Huss, Hass, Heise, and also were changed to alias names to protect their families back in Germany. Germans with the name Crump are using an alias established by Conrad Cramm who was serving in the First Hessian Regt. as an informant for Frederick the Great. The Cramm family was from the Wolfenbuttel and Hannover area around Cramme; most served the Duke of Brunswick, but some were mercenaries for the Duke of Hessen. Deserters were hung in effigy and their families property was sometimes taken.
    On another matter. Neither Gates or Arnold were responsible for the victory at Saratoga. The Polish Engineer Koscibo ? was sent by George Washington to be the planner for the Patriots. He found the initial location for the troops was too poor to be successful and prevailed in having the location moved to the one that was used. Neither Gates, Arnold, or the other General (Strickland??) were supportive, but went along with his plan. Then Colonel Morgan and his VA riflemen went out on skirmishing parties and caused much damage to the supply lines and the foragers. When the generals refused to start an attack after the first British attack failed, Morgan and his men along with some other local militia attacked the retreating British, Indian and German troops with such great success that Benedict Arnold joined them. Arnold had been banned to his tent due to his insubordination. When he heard of the success going on with Morgan, Arnold jumped on his horse and joined Morgan. At the end of the battle, Arnold and Gates claimed credit for the victory which made Morgan so angry that he resigned his Continental Army Commission and returned to VA. He did not return to the Continental Army until Gates was dishonored by his cowardice at Camden SC where Gates led his starving and sick Southern Patriot Army into a trap in the swamp where they were slaughtered. Gates did not even stay until the fighting stopped. He hopped onto his race horse and outran every other person from the battle. When the Patriot relief force from Charlotte met him between Camden and Charlotte, they started to hang him for desertion but he identified himself and said he was on the way to Hillsboro NC for help. The big problem was he was not on the road to Hillsboro, and the troops were not impressed. In fact, Gates was immediately removed from troop command in the south because no one would follow him. Some southerners thought Gates was the best General the British had. Gates left the former commander of the Southern Army he had just taken command of die in battle by not sending any help to him and his men who were being attacked by a large force. The MD and Carolina men fighting with him were falsely criticized for not fighting well when they were giving their all. ALL the troops at Kings Mountain, which was the battle that convinced the French that the natives would fight for freedom, were militia (local people who were not paid by the Continental Army) who had no Continental officers or men and no Continental arms or ammunition or cannon or Continental horses. Their lead came from Ft. Chiswell VA mines and paid for with British crown tax money. This led to the local saying “we changed British gold into lead before we sent it to them. Some of the gunpowder was produced near Morganton NC by a brave woman Grace Bowman whose husband Capt. Bowman was killed in the battle of Ramseur Mills in NC. She later married a McDowell. I had ancient kinfolk at the battle and went to school with a ggggson of Col. Campbell who had one of the 4 Ferguson rifles that had been at the battle. Ferguson had patented the breech loading design and proved it to the British Royalty by firing it over six times faster than the muzzle loaded guns. At Brandywine, the other British officers removed the rifles after Ferguson was wounded because they thought the guns were too deadly to be morally used.
    I appreciate this site having data on the various battles; however, please do not try to change historical facts by buying into the tales embellished by the rich aristocratic leaders who refused to give proper credit or support to the militia.

  25. My third great grand father, Maj. James Wilkinson, who was on Gen Gates staff drew up the documents for Gen “Johnney Bergoins surrender. He had also crossed the Delaware river in Gen Washingtons’ boat with him.

    Later he served as general in chief of the army under four presidents. His problem was all this time he was agent #13 spying for Spain.

  26. Captain Walter Thorp built my boyhood home in Connecticut in 1825. His father Eliphalet Thorp was a Captain in the Connecticut Militia spent time in the Connecticut Camps on the eastern shore of the Hudson River Highlands.

    This is where in early October 1777 the Americans fought with Sir Henry Clinton’s British Troops who were trying to connect with Burgoyne in Albany. The NY militia suffered tragic defeat at Fort Montgomery but held Sir Henry at bay while the Connecticut Miltia continued to harass the British ships as they moved north with the tide beyond Kingston NY. With the news of Saratoga the British ships returned
    to New York and the war turned in the American’s favor.

    James Fennemore Cooper’s historical novel, The Spy, took place in this viciniity and is a good read this time of year.

    DLW

  27. Pvt James Thompson was one of those NY militia captured at ft Montgomery and was a prisoner on the Jersey in NY harbor.

  28. A 5th great grandfather of mine, England-born and New York-settled veteran of the French and Indian War, was on the losing side in the Battle of Bemis Heights, but, tasked by Burgoyne with returning the army’s pay-chest to safety before capitulation, was sent north with a force under McAlpin, avoiding capture and the Convention.

  29. My ancestor Jonathan Rees was a Captain in the Pennsylvania Militia, and was at the Battle of Saratoga. I do not remember offhand what outfit.

  30. Judy Smith: Do you remember the url of the surname website you mentioned? I would like to try it.

  31. Thrilled to read all these comments- yes, ours was the Marshall House! My mother’s mom was the youngest daughter of one of the Marshall sons that pioneered west and ended in Colorado. They are descended from Elder Brewster and share a lateral connection with Justice John Marshall, and William Whipple (a Signer).
    I am new to Fold3…..how do I contact someone who posts comment?

  32. Thomas Murray of Westmoreland County Pennsylvania, My 5x Great Grandfather, Served with the 8th Pennsylvania Vol. Infantry.

  33. I had an ancestor Adam Woods b.1742 d.1826 son of William Woods and Susannah Wallace Woods whho was a major in charge of troups from Virginia who was at the surrender of Lord Cornwallis at the seige of Yorktown, VA.

  34. My 4th Great Grandfather , William Soules fought the the British side at the battle of Saratoga.He was captured and paroled to his farm in Duchess County NY on the condition that he not again take up arms against the rebels. He, knowing that his days were numbered in NY put his family, his livestock and all the belongings he could on 2 flat boats and went up Lake Champlain to Canada where he was a Quartermaster Sargent for the British. He fulfilled both his beliefs and his oath in this way, When the war was over and the boundry was set he found that he had settled in Vermont not Canada.

  35. My 5th Great Grand Uncle was John Freeman lease holder of Freeman’s Farm, owned by Philip Schuyler. His sister, my 5th Great Grand Aunt, Dorcas’s husband John Burleigh is said to have died near the Freeman house where Gen. John Burgoyne(13th Cousin 9x Removed) initially used as headquarters. Dorcas’s future husband, Mathais Rose U.E., fought with the British and was captured with Burgoyne. Gen. Simon Fraser who died during the Second Battle at Bemis Heights, was my 13th Cousin 8x Removed. John’s son, Thomas (1st Cousin 6x Removed) then 12, like Mathais, joined Jessup’s King’s Loyal Americans. John’s uncle, James Freeman(6th Great Grand Uncle) owned a farm northeast of Freeman’s Farm, on the other side of the Hudson. His sons, Elisha, Stephen, Elijah, Gideon and James(1st Cousins 7x Removed), fought with the 13th Albany Militia, under Capt. Ephraim Woodworth(3rd Cousin 8x Removed)along with his sons, Amos and Reuben(4th Cousins 7x Removed). Gen Ebenezer Learned(2nd Cousin 8x Removed) and Col. Daniel Morgan(Half 9th Cousin 9x Removed) fought along side each other at Bemis Height’s. Pvt. Francis Ingersoll(5th Great Grandfather) served under Col. Samuel Brewer, in the12th Massachusetts Regiment under Gen. Benjamin Lincoln. Gen. George Washington(5th Cousin 8x Removed) Commander of the Continental Army. John Freeman(6th Great Grandfather) father of John, Dorcas and Asa(5th Great Grandfather), brother of James, would pass away in Canada, 1796. Asa was the Hog Reeve in Worthington, Mass. about the time of the battle. I am also indirectly related to Gen. Benedict Arnold, Gen. Benjamin Lincoln, Gen Enoch Poor, and Gen. Friedrich Adolf Riedesel. The Bemus’s, Fonda’s, and Schuyler’s are also indirect relatives. Asa’s grandson, Loyal would marry Francis’s granddaughter, Elmira Eastland. There are many other’s who fought at Saratoga, or other parts of Burgoyne’s ill fated campaign that are direct and indirect relatives. No matter which side they fought for or believed in, we owe them our gratitude.

  36. My husbands 6ggrandfather Gideon Freeman and his wife Eunice Ford both belonged to the New York Militia. He fought at the battle of Saratoga. It is also believed that the Freeman Farm was a direct relative of his . As the relative didn’t want to fight against the British he moved to Canada. My husbands family came to the US from England in the 1600.

    • Hi Donna,

      Gideon was my 1st cousin 7x Removed. John Freeman(Freeman’s Farm) was Gideon’s 1st Cousin. The family was deeply divided in the loyalties. John and his sister Dorcas, were loyalist, and either aided or fought with the British at Saratoga. John and most of his family died from small pox in Canada, or on the way there. Gideon’s Grandfather, your husband’s and my Great Grandfather, traveled to Canada dying there in 1795. My Great Grandfather, Asa, was Gideon’s 1st Cousin. He was a patriot, and the Hog Reeve in Worthington, Massachusetts at the time. Your husband is my cousin 7th cousin 1x Removed.

      Dave Freeman

  37. My ancestor was Robert Simpson born abt 1753 and signed up with General Burgoynes troops on the British side. He was inducted into the British army in 1773 in Rennslaer, New York . He escaped the battle of Saratoga and was routed as a refugee around lake Champlaine for the winter to Montreal where he stayed until he was granted land in Douglastown Quebec with other soldiers for service in 1784. He had acted as a surveyor for Burgoynes army and later surveyed The towns of New Carlisle and Douglastown and died in Gaspe Quebec.