Old Town Cemetery
Newburgh, New York 12550

Men Who Served the War of the Revolution

Amerman, Derick

Barry, John

Belknap, Abel

Belknap, Isaac 

Belknap, Samuel

Belknap, William

Bowman, Phineas

Brown, Francis

Brundage, Nathaniel

Chaloner, Walter, Esq.

Cooley, Jonathan

DeGrove, Adolph

DeWitt, John

Dodge, Levi

Donnelly, Peter 

DuBois, Isaac

DuBois, Matthew

Du-Bois, Nathaniel

Foster, Elnathan

Fowler, Samuel

Gardner, Thomas

Gedney, Daniel

Gillespie, William

Gilmer, Robert

Griggs, Samuel

Hall, Robert

Halstead, Gersh’m

“Hessians” 

Holmes, Burroughs

Howell, David

Hutchins, John Nathan

Mandeville, Jacob

Mandeville, John

McLean, John

Merritt, Caleb

Merritt, Josiah

Niven, Daniel, Esq.

O’Bryan, John

Perry, David

Pope, John

Reeve, Selah

Rogers, Jason

Rogers, Justus

Smith, Daniel

Smith, Francis

Thompson, James

Walsh, Hugh

Weigand, Martin

Wilson, Thomas

Amerman, Derick (3-189) Private, Quartermaster, 2d Regiment b.9/28.1759 NY d.3/14/1826 NY m. Mary Belknap
According to Ruttenber 1859, “the population of the Precinct was considerably increased, after the occupation of New York by the English forces, by “refugees” from that city, whose participation in the struggle for liberty had compelled them to remove. Among those persons . . . Derick Amerman . . . and others, became permanent residents after the peace.” In a footnote, “the Clinton papers, in the State Library, contain the petitions of those and other refugees, praying that the houses and lands which they had owned and occupied in New York prior to the war, and from which they had been compelled to flee on the occupation by the English, should be restored to them; but for reasons entirely unexplained, so far as we have been able to discover, the petitions were never granted.”

Amerman started work in Abel Belknap’s mill on the Quassaick Creek. He served as Captain of Hugh Walsh’s sloop the Ceres, then of his own sloop, the Siren. He was one of the founders of the First Associate Reformed Church, and one of the first trustees of Newburgh Academy, for the construction of which he supplied timber. He served as Town Clerk from 1790 to 1797. In Fairmont, Nebraska, there is a “Derrick Amerman Society of Children of the American Revolution.”

Barry, John (3-194) 

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Belknap, Abel (3-186) Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b.1/13/1739 MA d.11/15/1804 NY m. 1 Mollie Richardson m. 2 Hannah Williams m. 3 Hannah Williams (DAR has “civil & patriotic service”)
In him were united all those amiable qualities which could not fail rendering him so deservedly dear to his family and friends…. Gravestone inscription

Belknap bought Glebe lots in the 1750’s. According to Ruttenber 1859, in October 1777 Gen. James Clinton had his Head Quarters at the house of Abel Belknap, who was 1st Sergeant in Capt. Birdsall’s Company, organizational date unknown, but disbanded in 1815. According to Headley, “Abel was chairman of the committee of safety for the Newburgh precinct during the Revolution, signing the pledge of association. At the close of the war he engaged in the manufacture of soap 1783 to 1804. This became an important industry, and has extended from father to son for four generations.” In April 1838, Abel Belknap was appointed to a committee to ascertain the number of persons willing to unite to organize a Second Presbyterian Church; said church was duly organized on June 15th, and Abel Belknap chosen a Ruling Elder. In his obituary in The Rights of Man, Nov. 19, 1804, “this venerable, useful and truly pious citizen, enjoyed the esteem of all who knew him. As a magistrate, he conscientiously performed the important duties of his office; as a husband, parent, relative, and friend, he attained to patriarchal years, not only without reproach, but such was the blameless tenor of his life, that his decease is a subject of general regret.”

Belknap, Isaac (5-004) Captain, Quartermaster, Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b.12/14/1733 MA d. 4/29/1815 NY m. 1 Bridget Richardson m. 2 Deborah (Alden) Coffin
He was a firm friend to his country in her darkest times, a zealous supporter of American liberty… Gravestone inscription. 
Isaac Belknap bought a Glebe lot in the 1750’s, and lots in the Baird patent in 1763, was one of the first members of the First Associate Reformed Church and was a signer of the 1775 pledge of association. According to Ruttenber, 1859, “in July, 1776, in conjunction with the general committee of Ulster County, the committee organized a [militia] company of Rangers. This company was composed of three divisions – of one of which Isaac Belknap was Captain – subject to the orders of the general committee; and was in service during the war in guarding the frontiers, and on expeditions against the predatory bands of Tories scattered through the country.” Capt. Belknap reported with a full company at the fortification of the Highlands, April 25, 1776 and was part of the garrison at Fort Montgomery Jan. 18, 1777 under Brig. Gen. James Clinton. His commission as Quartermaster under Col. Jonathan Hasbrouck and Lieut. Johannes Hardenberg, in the Ulster County Militia was signed Oct. 25, 1775 and served as Town Clerk 1789. In 1771 that he was Captain of the NewBern when it was driven on the rocks on the west coast of Bermuda, but then succeeded in reaching Mangrovet Bay. During the war the Fishkill-New Windsor ferry owned by Wiltsie & Carpenter was placed under the charge of the continental officers at Newburgh, of whom Isaac Belknap was one.

Upon Alexander Colden’s death in 1775, Isaac Belknap took his place as a trustee of the Glebe. Isaac Belknap’s house stood nearly opposite the Gardiner house on Water Street – “there were but five houses below the hill” clustered in the vicinity First Street. And in a footnote: in the following letter among the Clinton papers in the State Library: ‘Newburgh, Feb. 26, 1778. I think it proper to inform you, that one Birdsall, who was taken prisoner and brought to Poughkeepsie [goal], but had liberty to come to Newburgh to his brothers, some way or other has got the small-pox, upon which Isaac Belknap’s and two other families became inoculated in that neighborhood, near the dock a little south of the Continental ferry. As soon as I heard it I endeavored to prevent it, but I understand their Committee has consented to it, though they have promised not to suffer any more to be inoculated in Newburgh town or near it, where the troops might be exposed; but I am informed they may not have complied with that promise. Dr. Higby is the person who inoculates. Jas. Clinton to Governor George Clinton.”

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Belknap, Samuel (5-003) Captain, Bunker Hill, Lexington b.10/13/1735 NY d.3/31/1821 NY m. Abigail Flagg NY
Here moulder the remains of the Soldier, the Patriot and the Christian, Samuel Belknap. Ardent in the cause of Liberty, he stood forth in defence of his country in the hour of her utmost need. At Lexington and Bunkers Hill, and at White Plains, he fought nobly. For many years a member of the Legislature of his native state… Graveyard inscription
According to Ruttenber 1859, Samuel Belknap was born in Massachusetts and was 14 when his father left Massachusetts and moved to Newburgh. Prior to the Revolution, he resided at Woburn, Mass. and occupied the homestead and mills erected by his father, and to which was attached a large and productive farm situated on the public road leading to Concord. In the early part of the controversy with England, he was active in the cause of the colonists; and in 1775, he organized a company, of which he was Captain, and took part in the conflict at Concord. During the following year, he was in the engagement at White Plains; and subsequently rendered much efficient service in the field. After the war he was elected to the Legislature of his native State, where he served to the ample satisfaction of his constituents. He afterwards removed to Newburgh where he resided until his death.”

Belknap, William (5-001) Lieutenant, 4th NY b. 2/21/1751 MA d. 3/31/1821 NY m. Martha Carscadden

Bowman, Phineas (5-084) Colonel and/or Major, Massachusetts Line – NOT IN D.A.R. INDEX
According to Ruttenber 1859, Col. Bowman was one of the first lawyers who settled here. He had been a colonel in the army during the war. In person he was short and rather corpulent, large head and face, and a mouthful of teeth as black as ebony. He always wore a cocked hat. He was a man of fine talents and gentlemanly manners; but was very intemperate during the last years of his life. His principal competitor was Mr. Sleight, and afterwards, Judge Fisk. Bowman’s only child, Mary, married Ben. Anderson, a lawyer but a worthless fellow. Bowman had served in the war of the Revolution, and attained the rank of Colonel. He came here with the army, and either remained here after its disbandment, as was the case with several of his contemporaries in the service, or returned here not long subsequent to that event. He was a man of high legal attainments; was admitted to practice in the courts of Ulster county in 1790; rose rapidly in his profession, and rendered his constituents valuable service, as a member of the Legislature of 1798, by securing the passage of a law erecting the present county of Orange. Bowman owned property subsequently occupied by William Roe, on Montgomery Street, which was taken down by Mr. Roe, and removed to the south-west corner of Montgomery and Third Streets, and became in part the parsonage of the 1st M. E. Church. 

Brown, Francis (4-083) 1st Regiment (3 in D.A.R. index but none died in NY)
In him shone conspicuously the Saint, the Father and the Husband.  Gravestone inscription.

Brundage, Nathaniel (4-060) Private, Westchester Militia, 2nd Regiment b. 1/12/1756 d. 8/31/1827 NY m. Rebecca Smith NY

Chaloner, Walter, Esq. (5-007) (2 listed in D.A.R. index, but both lived/died in MA)

Cooley, Jonathan (5-117) Orange County Militia, 4th Regiment (D.A.R. index lists him in MA)
Mr. Cooley was a lawyer and a Justice of the Peace (from annotations to the published Inscriptions of Old Town Cemetery).

DeGrove, Adolph (5-075) – Sr. or Jr.? Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In memory of Adolph DeGrove (erected by his weeping Consort)…How loved, how valued once avails thee not… Gravestone inscription.

According to Ruttenber 1859, the population of the Precinct was considerably increased, after the occupation of New York by the English forces, by “refugees” from that city, whose participation in the struggle for liberty had compelled them to remove. Among those persons . . . Adolph DeGrove . . . and others, became permanent residents after the peace. In the footnote, the Clinton papers in the State Library contain the petitions of those and other refugees, praying that the houses and lands which they had owned and occupied in New York prior to the war, and from which they had been compelled to flee on the occupation by the English, should be restored to them; but for reasons entirely unexplained, so far as we have been able to discover, the petitions were never granted. The ‘old town’ was at this time a forlorn looking place, and the side hill was mostly covered by orchards. A tavern built in this year of 1776 by Adolph De Grove, on the southwest corner of Water and Third streets became Lafayette’s headquarters. He also owned the first bakery in the village. Of Newburgh’s churches the oldest is the First Presbyterian, whose legal existence began a few months after the close of the Revolutionary War, although its informal existence had started a score of years before, and been kept up in an irregular and feeble way. In July 1784 a meeting to form the First Presbyterian Church in Newburgh was held at Adolph DeGrove’s house, and he was legally elected a Trustee of the new congregation or society. 

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DeWitt, John (3-226) Dutchess Militia, 2nd Regiment (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In a newspaper article of unknown date, “Visitors to Newburgh cannot understand how it ever came to pass that such an old town had one of the widest and most impressive thoroughfares in the world bestowed upon it. ….. It was the facts of the location and its commercial importance that led businessmen of Newburgh to project in 1801, and in the main complete later, the Newburgh and Cochecton Turnpike. …. The projector of the Cochecton Turnpike, John De Witt, had not trade in view. He was a member of the Assembly from Dutchess County, and for speculative purposes, bought a huge block of the Hardenburgh patent. Falling to interest Kingston capitalists in his “dream,” he came to Newburgh and found men who had already shared in the traffic of the immediate western country and knew its prospective value. They readily accepted his proposition, and organized a company with him at its head. He gave his life to the work. … John De Witt…was buried in Old Town Cemetery, this city. There also repose the remains of his associates, Hugh Walsh and Levi Dodge. … But the development which they gave to the community and to the then West,” says one of the local historians, ‘lives, and in it their works do follow them – themselves only remembered by what they did.’ The man who is responsible for the magnificent width of Newburgh’s Broadway was John De Witt.” In an annotation to Old Town’s Inscriptions, “he gave his life by disease contracted in its construction.”

The existing granite monument was erected in 1903 by his descendants, who had the original inscription copied. 

Dodge, Levi (0-00) Lieutenant, in New Hampshire line (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In a letter to the Editor in a 1926 newspaper, “….other veterans of the War of Independence, whose graves may or may not have been similarly marked, are interred in the same burying ground…. Levi M. Dodge, brick manufacturer and village president….all lie in unknown graves.” Levi Dodge signed the 1775 pledge of association at Weigand’s Broad Street Tavern. On April 6, 1793, Levi Dodge was appointed one of 8 ‘active persons’ (in the committee of the South District) to hand petitions about concerning the annexation of the south end of the county of Ulster to the north end of the county of Orange. Immediately after the incorporation of the village, an act was passed on March 20, 1801 appointing Levi Dodge and others as Directors of the Newburgh & Cochecton Turnpike Road, with a capital of $125,000, for the construction of a road from Newburgh to the Delaware River. The bank of Newburgh was incorporated by act of the Legislature in March 22, 1811. Levi Dodge became the fourth cashier, succeeded in 1836 by George W. Kerr. Levi Dodge was a P. M. in 1797 in the first Newburgh Masonic Lodge “Steuben Lodge, No. 18” whose charter was dated September 27, 1788. He served the Village Board of Trustees as a Corporation Officer 1816.

Donnelly, Peter (3-024) Minuteman, Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b. 8/29/1720 IR d. 11/29/1782 NY m. Eleanor McGraw NY (D.A.R. says “patriotic service”)
Calm resignation crowned his latest hours. While death stood ready to arrest the powers of flesh and blood, the mind, serene and free, bound for the joys of immortality. Gravestone inscription.

According to Ruttenber 1859, Peter Donnelly bought 392 Liberty Street (south of Broad) from Joseph Albertson. Albertson was a tavern-keeper, one of whom petitioned the Governor in 1767 for the establishment of more taverns in Newburgh, because without them the ‘place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants.’ In the recollections of his son, “My father, Peter Donnelly, was the first person who manufactured leather here. He commenced in 1774, and had a currying shop only. Many of the farmers tanned their own leather and brought it to him to finish. He worked during the war at dressing leather for the army whenever they needed it, and received no pay until after the peace.” Donnelly was a signer of the pledge of association in 1774.

DuBois, Isaac (3-391) b. 1766 d. 1845
Brother of General Nathaniel DuBois.

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DuBois, Matthew (3-269) Captain or Major, Ulster County Militia, 2nd Regiment b. 11/17/1724 NY d. 12/29/1799 NY m. Sarah Humphreys (D.A.R. says “civil service”)
A kind husband, a tender parent. Gravestone inscription. 
And in the annotations to Old Town’s Inscriptions, “Few men whose resting place is marked in the cemetery have amore worthy life record than Matthew du Bois, grandson of the Huguenot immigrant at New Paltz; was engaged in sloop freighting in New Windsor; was in Col. McClaughry’s Regiment in action at Fort Montgomery Oct. 6, 1777; gave two sons to the Revolutionary army; member of the Legislature, and filled several local official trusts.” According to a 1926 letter to the Editor, he was a Smith Street tobacconist, and according to Ruttenber 1859, the first tobacconist. He signed the pledge of association.

Du-Bois, Nathaniel (3-371) General (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In the annotations to Old Town’s Inscriptions, “A descendant in the 5th generation of Louis DuBois, the Huguenot settler at New Paltz. He was Brigadier-General of Artillery for many years, a miller and manufacturer at West Newburgh, and at all times an active, honorable and useful citizen.” In a footnote in Ruttenber 1859, “On the 18th of October 1777, Gen. James Clinton, writing from his Head Quarters at the house of Abel Belknap …October 23d … Major DuBois with his company from Newburgh along the river North.” On July 23, 1776, the Provincial Convention had directed the organization of companies of Rangers; Nathaniel DuBois succeeded Captain William Acker as captain for several years in Capt. Acker’s Company of Cavalry, which was organized about the year 1804 and continued in existence until 1837-1838. The uniforms were red coats with buff facings and buff pantaloons. It was in service on Long Island in 1812-1813

Dubois’ Mills were about one mile and a half west of its confluence with the Hudson. It was bought by Mr. Dickonson in 1798; subsequently it became the property of Nathaniel Dubois, who erected in connection with it a saw mill and a fulling mill. It remained in his hands upwards of forty years. The Snake Hill turnpike company was incorporated March 24, 1815 with capital of $14,000. Nathaniel Dubois was one of the Directors. 
In 1835, Nathaniel Dubois was appointed to a committee to communicate with the directors of the New York and Erie rail road company and to present to them “a proposition for uniting the efforts of the inhabitants of this vicinity with that company in the successful prosecution of the project for constructing a rail road from Lake Erie to the Hudson river.” On June 15, 1836, Nathaniel DuBois was elected one of the directors of the Hudson and Delaware Rail Road Company.

Foster, Elnathan (5-146) Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment (not listed in D.A.R. index)
According to Ruttenber 1859, on February 4th 1767, several tavern-keepers and citizens petitioned the Governor for the establishment of more taverns in Newburgh, because without them the ‘place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants.’ Elnathan Foster was one of the signers of the petition. In 1775, all who signed the pledge of association were ‘avowed friends of the American cause’; signers included Elnathan Foster. In the establishment of Newburgh Academy in 1795, Elnathan Foster gave a lot of land and a building was erected by means of private subscriptions, the title and management of the property being vested in the trustees of the Glebe. In 1786 the Methodist Episcopal Church of New York & New Jersey had two “elder districts”; Newburgh was in the “circuit” that embraced East Jersey, Newark, New York city, Long Island, and north to New Paltz.. That year two of the “assistants” stopped in the village of Newburgh and preached at the house of Elnathan Foster, where a “class” was soon after formed. These classes continued to be visited by circuit preachers until they ripened into societies of sufficient strength to support located ministers. In 1808, Elnathan Foster’s class was organized into a church as the Methodist Episcopal Church of the Parish of Newburgh and there is a tradition that Elnathan Foster, in subscribing to the finishing of the upper rooms of the Academy for the use of the courts made a condition that the Methodists should be permitted to occupy them, which was accepted.

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Fowler, Samuel (3-090) Ulster County Militia, 3rd Regiment b. 10/12/1720 NY d. 10/13/1789 NY m. Charlotte Purdy NY
According to Ruttenber 1859, “Samuel Fowler [born 1720 and who bought a portion of the Harrison Patent in 1747] was a prominent and influential citizen of this town for some thirty years, and his name frequently occurs in the pages of this work in connection with the organization of St. George’s church and other local events.” On February 4th 1767, several tavern-keepers and citizens petitioned the Governor for the establishment of more taverns in Newburgh, because without them the “place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants.” Samuel Fowler was one of the signers of the petition. Samuel Fowler was also a signer of a petition to the acting Governor of the Province asking for a charter for the Newburgh Mission on November 17, 1769. (No explanation as to the Newburgh Mission.) He did not sign the 1775 pledge of association; however, on the day it was sent back to the Provincial Congress, he and several others signed a declaration that they would abide by the Continental/Provincial Congress’ actions, for reasons detailed in the declaration.

In 1786 the Methodist Episcopal Church of New York & New Jersey had two “elder districts”; Newburgh was in the “circuit” that embraced East Jersey, Newark, New York city, Long Island, and north to New Paltz.. That year two of the “assistants” stopped in the village of Newburgh and preached at the house of Samuel Fowler in Middlehope, forming a “class” and which was henceforth a regular preaching station until 1813. These classes continued to be visited by circuit preachers until they ripened into societies of sufficient strength to support located ministers. Samuel Fowler’s class and Daniel Holmes’ class organized into a church in 1821.

Gardner, Thomas (5-230) Wagonmaster, Brigade of Wagons, NJ b. 3/2/1724 NY d. 10/1/1795 NJ m. 1 Phoebe Headley m. 2 Abigail (Bonnell) Allen

Gedney, Daniel (3-107) Private, Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b. 12/15/1739 NY d. 12/15/1790 NY m. Charlotte Fowler NY
From a 1926 letter to the Editor, “….other veterans of the War of Independence, whose graves may or may not have been similarly marked, are interred in the same burying ground. Among them are….. Daniel Gedney, 1739-1790, farmer on Cochecton turnpike, at present, Union Avenue corner.” Gedney did not sign the 1775 pledge of association; however, on the day it was sent back to the Provincial Congress, he and several others signed a declaration that they would abide by the Continental/Provincial Congress’ actions, for reasons detailed in the declaration.

Gillespie, William (3-208) 3rd Regiment d. 9/13/1813 aged 76 years (5 listed in D.A.R. index; none in NY)
A love of the truth as it is in Jesus. A friend of good men…Pause, Reader, and ask thy bosom, whether this shall ever be written with truth over thy grave. Gravestone inscription.

Gilmer, Robert (5-254) 3rd Regiment d. 2/23/1833 aged 73 years (only one listed in D.A.R. index died in S.C.)

Griggs, Samuel (4-014) Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b. 1760 d. 12/1/1820 (only one listed in D.A.R. index lived & died in MA)

Hall, Robert (5-185) Ulster County Militia, 2nd Regiment b. 5/16/1745 Scotland d. 4/27/1825 (4 listed in D.A.R. index; none in NY)

Halstead, Gersh’m (2-039) Private, Ulster County Militia, 2nd Regiment b. 10/25/1750 NY d. 6/7/1822 NY m. Mary Smith NY
Behold and see as you pass by, As you are now so once was I, As I am now so you must be; Prepare for death and follow me” Graveyard inscription. In October 1936 a D.A.R. marker was placed at the grave by General Nathaniel Woodhull. 

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“Hessians” legendary burial site
From “German Accounts of the March of the Convention Army through Orange County, 1778” annotated by Lt. Colonel Donald M. Londahl-Smidt, USAF-Ret: 

The German Convention troops were divided into three divisions for the march from Winter Hill, Cambridge, and Massachusetts to Charlottesville, Virginia:

1st German Division: Prinz Ludwig Dragoon Regiment, the Grenadier Battalion, and the Regiment von Rhetz under Lt. Colonel von Mengen

2nd German Division: von Riedesel Regiment and Specht Regiment under Brigadier General Specht

3rd German Division: von Barner Light Infantry Battalion, the Hessen-Hanau Regiment (the only non- Brunswick group), Erbprinz and artillery under Brigadier General von Gall

From diaries kept by several Germans, and by the Brunswick Corps official journal, it appears that the 1st German Division was taken across the Hudson from Fishkill on November 29th, had a rest day in Newburgh, then marched on to Hunting Grove/Otterkill on December 1st. The 2nd German Division crossed on December 1st, and was quartered in barns in Newburgh. On December 2nd they marched to Little Britain. The 3rd German Division appears to have crossed on December 1st, then also marched to Little Britain on the 2nd.

In an email from Londahl-Smidt, “of the [German] Convention army, six Braunschweigers (Brunswickers) died between 1 November 1778 and 31 March 1779. Deaths were on November 5,8,14,23, and 27; the sixth died on November 29th still in Cambridge. Since all of the above privates died before the first German divisions reached the Hudson River, I very much doubt that there are any buried in Newburgh. Incidentally, 15 privates in the Braunschweig Dragoon Regiment Prinz Ludwig Ernst were in the Convention Army marching south from Massachusetts to Virginia, and none of them died during the march…. The only other possibility I can think of is the Hessen-Hanau troops who were part of the Convention Army. Of the Hessen-Hanau Regiment Erbprinz, one private died between the time they marched from Cambridge and 17 February 1779, when they were in Charlottesville, Va. There were no deaths in the Hessen-Hanau company of Artillery during this period…. Off-hand, I cannot think of any other German troops who were in the Newburgh area during the war.”

In the Recollections in Ruttenber 1859, “I recollect distinctly, however, the Hessian prisoners who were brought here after the surrender of Burgoyne. The officers wore long blue cloaks. They were in charge of a company of Morgan’s riflemen, a part of whom were billeted at my father’s house.” In “Newburgh in the American Revolution” by Albert Gedney Barratt, “after the surrender of Burgoyne, the British and Hessian prisoners of war were marched down this side of the Hudson through Newburgh on their way to Easton, Pennsylvania, in charge of Morgan’s Riflemen. The Hessians of Riedesel’s Dragoons wore heavy boots, weighing five and one-half pounds apiece. One Hessian officer exchanged his boots for a lighter pair at North Newburgh, now Middle Hope, one of which is exhibited at the State Museum at Washington’s Headquarters. According to tradition, Hessian prisoners of war were buried in the southwest corner of Old Town Burying Ground, after which no interments were made near them. The corner is apparently unoccupied…..The officers of the Hessians wore long blue cloaks.” 

In “The American Revolution from the letters of the Baroness Von Riedesel” by Helen Ver Nooy Gearn, “[On October 7, 1777] …the British General Fraser received his mortal wound…. Burgoyne’s army did not retreat further and was captured. [At Saratoga] the velvet-tongued General John Burgoyne persuaded [General Horatio] Gates to call the papers of surrender a “convention” instead of a “capitulation”. Thus the enemy forces became known as the “Convention Troops” rather than prisoners of war. Guards were sent to march them to camp in Charlottesville, Virginia, where food and supplies were more plentiful than around Boston where the great armies had exhausted the land and the people of surplus supplies…. The Convention Troops were only to be held in America until a “distinct and explicit ratification for the convention at Saratoga shall be properly notified by the Court of Great Britain to Congress.” The last was the key word. The British had not and would not recognize the Continental Congress. Thus this condition could not be fulfilled and the troops would have to remain until the war’s end,” unable to return to fight, or to relieve others in Europe who would then arrive to fight.

Holmes, Burroughs (3-165) 4th NY Regiment Militia b. 1/1737 d. 11/7/1810 (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In handwritten notes in Old Town Cemetery’s Inscriptions, there is information on Holmes in the NY G&B Record, Vol. 59, pp. 219 and 351, in Eager on p. 99, and in Ruttenber & Clark on p. 69. In Ruttenber 1859, “on February 4th 1767, several tavern-keepers and citizens petitioned the Governor for the establishment of more taverns in Newburgh, because without them the “place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants.” Burroughs Holmes was one of the signers of the petition. He was also one of the signers of the 1775 pledge of association at Weigand’s Broad Street tavern. 

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Howell, David (5-078) Orange County Militia, 4th b. 1741 d. 9/20/1793
…Adieu, my wife and children dear, Be also ready for the call, Eternity is ever near… Gravestone inscription.
In Ruttenber 1859, “there were but five houses below the hill, besides the continental blacksmith shop which extended from Mr. Tyler’s corner to Mr. Carter’s store. David Howell finished it and lived there after the war. After the close of the war, David Howell built a dock near the foot of Second Street. The trustees of the Academy in 1795-96 purchased 1 pound nails for the construction of the school from David Howell for 0 pounds 0 shillings and 11 d, as well as boards &c for a writing table for the school for 5 shillings.”

Hutchins, John Nathan
In a letter to the Editor in a 1926 newspaper clipping, “….other veterans of the War of Independence, whose graves may or may not have been similarly marked, are interred in the same burying ground. Among them are….. John Nathan Hutchins, 1700-1782, village schoolmaster and founder of Hutchins Family Almanac.” (Not an active member of the militia, the letter writer adds.)

Mandeville, Jacob (4-048) Orange County Militia, 1st Regiment d. 2/24/1801 aged 39 years

Mandeville, John (2-006) b. 8/3/1760 d. 12/19/1845 
In a letter to the Editor in a 1926 newspaper clipping, “….other veterans of the War of Independence, whose graves may or may not have been similarly marked, are interred in the same burying ground. Among them are….. John Mandeville, 1745-1819, King Street blacksmith.”

In Recollections in Ruttenber 1859, “in reference to the purchase of patent lots, Jeremiah Smith, father of Daniel Smith of Balmville bought the place of Albertson and kept a tavern there sometime after the war. The house is still there. John Mandeville afterwards bought it and built an addition to it.”

McLean, John (5-232) General/Continental Line b. 7/3/1756 d. 2/28/1821 NY m. Ann Burnett
Sacred to the memory of General John McLean, Born in Scotland in 1756; he bore arms through the war of American Independence, and was for many years Commissary General of the State of New York…This monument was erected, March 9, 1839, by George Washington McLean, to the memory of his wife, father, mother and brother. Gravestone inscription.

In annotations to Old Town Cemetery’s Inscriptions, “Gen. John McLean lived in what is now sometimes called ‘the Wycoff place,’ junction of Montgomery and Water Streets. His father was an early settler of what is now Blooming Grove.”

Merritt, Caleb (5-014) Captain NY b. 2/28/1735 NY d. 11/29/1793 NY m. Martha Purdy NY

Merritt, Josiah (3-089) Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment Private NY b. 11/17/1752 NY d. 3/12/1817 m. 1 Anna Purdy m. 2 Rachel Sherwood (D.A.R. says "Patriotic Service")
…Lord, T’is enough that thou art mine; I shall behold thy blissful face, And stand complete in righteousness. Gravestone inscription.

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Niven, Daniel, Esq. (5-178) Captain of Engineers NY, b. 1742 Scotland d. 11/20/1809 NY m. Jane Wallace NY
Strong sence unaided by early cultivation, but united with tried integrity, recommended him to respect and confidence. Devoted with unostentatious zeal to the best interests of society. He approved himself as a private Christian, unassuming and exemplary. As a soldier in the Armies of his Country, alert and gallant. As a civil magistrate, a terror to evil doers, enforcing wholesome laws, without fear, favor or affection. As an officer in the Church of God, disinterested, vigilant, public spirited, faithful. And having passed through an active & varied life, honored by the esteem of the good & fears of bad men, He finished his course in the consolations of that Gospel which he had loved… Gravestone inscription.

In Ruttenber 1859, “the population of the Precinct was considerably increased, after the occupation of New York by the English forces, by “refugees” from that city, whose participation in the struggle for liberty had compelled them to remove. Among those persons . . . Daniel Niven . . . and others, became permanent residents after the peace.” In a footnote: “The Clinton papers, in the State Library, contain the petitions of those and other refugees, praying that the houses and lands which they had owned and occupied in New York prior to the war, and from which they had been compelled to flee on the occupation by the English, should be restored to them; but for reasons entirely unexplained, so far as we have been able to discover, the petitions were never granted. 

In reference to the building of a courthouse, in 1793, Daniel Niven was appointed to a committee to meet with a body of delegates at Ward’s Bridge, who proceeded to make a report to the town, and informed the inhabitants that there was some prospect of Orange county joining with Ulster, or rather that the members of Orange had agreed, or seemed inclined to agree, that in case the two ends of the counties might be united together to form one distinct county, that then a Court House might be erected at Newburgh and Goshen. Daniel Niven was then appointed to another committee to meet with others from Orange county and follow up.

In reference to the behavior of the Druids in 1798-99, Daniel Niven is said to be one of three witnesses to the events (anti-infidel witness). In reference to the Second War of Independence with England, Daniel Niven was the chairman of a Federal party convention in 1809 that resulted in a resolution stating “that the act for enforcing the Embargo, passed January 9th, 1809, in our deliberate opinion, is unjust, illegal and oppressive – subversive of the rights and dangerous to the liberties of the people.” Niven was one of the deed trustees, founders and first Ruling Elders of the First Associate Reformed Church, as well as one of the charter trustees of Newburgh Academy.
Niven was part of a long anecdote about Phineas Bowman having paid a fine to Squire Niven and filed a complaint against a judge for violating the Sabbath, which resulted in Niven arresting the judge, forcing the judge to pay a fine. The judge “breathed vengeance against Niven” until it came out that Bowman was “the real author of the mischief.” Later, the judge heard Bowman at a Saturday trial in another matter, and adjourned the court to Poughkeepsie without telling him ~ in riding after him the next day, Niven arrested and fined Bowman for violating the Sabbath.

In the obituary in Political Index, Nov. 23, 1809, Niven “died in this town, on the 20th November inst., in the 67th year of his age, universally and justly lamented by all who were acquainted with him. Few ever deserved the character of an upright man more than he. As a husband and a father, he was kind and indulgent – as a friend, he was sincere and steady – as a magistrate, he was faithful and conscientious in the discharge of his duty – as a patriot, he was firmly attached to the interests of America, and fought her battles during the Revolutionary war; and as a Christian, his conversation was as it became the gospel of Christ. Firm and steady to whatever he considered his duty, neither the frowns nor the flattery of men could move him from it. Such was his conduct through life, and during his last illness he had no will of his own respecting life and death, but always said the “will of the Lord be done.” Amidst the pain which he suffered from an accute distemper, his patience remarkably appeared – not a murmuring word did he utter, but frequently said, “when my heart and my flesh do faint and fall, the Lord is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” His death bears an honorable testimony to the reality of religion, and to the support and comfort which it administers in a dying hour. “Mark the perfect man and behold the upright, for the end of that man is peace.” 

O’Bryan, John (3-128) Cornelius D. Wynkoop’s regiment b. 1762 d. 1/5/1829 (not listed in D.A.R. index)

Perry, David (4-021) Ulster County Militia, 2nd Regiment b. 1754 d. 9/16/1834 

Pope, John (5-182) served at Valley Forge, Monmount d. 12/27/1823 aged 76 years (five listed in D.A.R. index; none NY)
In handwritten notes in the Old Town Inscriptions, “see record in Political Index Star, December 30, 1823.”

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Reeve, Selah (3-380) 2nd Lieutenant, Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b. 2/28/1740 NY d. 2/21/1796 NY m. Keturah Strong NY
In Ruttenber 1859, Selah Reeve defied the British officers at Mattituck, L. I., where he had a farm and homestead, refusing to sign the oath of allegiance to the King. When they came for him, Mr. Reeve escaped with his family, having prepared a boat. “The dinner-horn sounded the signal of alarm agreed upon, and his men instantly repaired on board the scow, while he hastened the departure of his family. Entering the door of his dwelling, he found his wife busily preparing the noon-tide meal, and his boy, Selah, then an infant, asleep in the cradle. He grasped the child and placed him under his arm, very much as he would have handled a bag of flour; simply said to his wife, “Come,” and strode out of the back door. The infant soon made the air ring with cries at his unceremonious handling, and its mother remonstrated; but he gave little heed to either, until after repeated solicitations from the latter, when he handed her the child with the remark, “There, carry him yourself,” and then hastened on. The vessel was reached and cast off from the shore, just as the officers had passed through the house and emerged from the back door. Waving his hand to his baffled pursuers, Reeve steered for the Connecticut shore…….. After the war, he purchased (1784) a farm situated about three miles north of the village of Newburgh, to which he removed soon after.”

Rogers, Jason (5-194) b.5/19/1762 d.5/9/1836 (not listed in D.A.R. index)
In a letter to the Editor in a 1926 newspaper clipping, “….other veterans of the War of Independence, whose graves may or may not have been similarly marked, are interred in the same burying ground. Among them are….. Jason Rogers, 1762-1836, ship-builder on riverfront between Fourth and Fifth streets and one of the first volunteer firemen in Newburgh.” In annotations to Old Town Cemetery’s 1898 Inscriptions, “Jason Rogers came from New London, Conn., in 1785 or ’86, and engaged in ship building. The first horse-boat on the Newburgh Ferry, the Moses Rogers, was built by him in 1816… The entire family was remarkable for solidity of character and patriotic citizenship, [Rogers] himself being a soldier in the ranks of Fort Trumbull when New London was sacked by the British forces under Benedict Arnold. The family has no representatives now living in Newburgh.” In the Recollections in Ruttenber 1859, “Jason Rogers established a ship-yard between Fourth and Fifth streets, where he built a brig of two or three hundred tons burthen. The stocks for this vessel were laid on Water street north of Fifth. When she was launched, the hill was so steep that when she struck the water she went taffrail under. She was built for a company of farmers, of whom Isaac Fowler, I believe, was one, and sailed to the West Indies.”

Rogers, Justus (5-288) Private, Haverstraw Precinct Regiment b. 3/10/1737 NY d. 11/13/1811 NY m. Naomi Felter NY
And you, my friends, look down & view, The hollow, garping tomb; This glooming prison waits for you, When e’er the summons come. Gravestone inscription.

Smith, Daniel (2-009) 3rd Orange County Militia b. 1761 d. 6/16/1840 (18 listed in D.A.R. index) 
In Ruttenber 1859, “on February 4th 1767, several tavern-keepers and citizens petitioned the Governor for the establishment of more taverns in Newburgh, because without them the “place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants.” Daniel Smith was one of the signers of the petition. Additionally, the docks which were first built in the village were small and were principally located on the west side of what is now Front Street. “The first dock was unquestionably that built by Alexander Colden at the foot of First Street; and the second, that afterwards owned by Daniel Smith at Balmville.” According to Nutt 1891, “as early as 1798 there were four lines of sloops…..Daniel Smith and William Wilson, owners, Daniel Smith, master, sailed the sloop Morning Star from Daniel Smith’s dock on alternate Fridays.”

In Ruttenber 1859, “the Glebe charter was not being adhered to in the newly incorporated village, and in 1803 the Legislature passed an amended Glebe charter that provided for the election of trustees and directed that the Glebe revenues now were solely for the schools; an Episcopal minister would still have the right to be supported, if one were ever again inducted on the patent lands, but the church would have no participation in the revenues. On May 10, 1803, Daniel Smith was elected as one of the trustees. The pages then detail the legal challenge to the amendment.” 

Balmville, “formerly called Hampton, and was the commercial centre of the town as early as 1767. In later times, the freighting business was conducted here by Daniel Smith, and subsequently by the Messrs. Butterworth.”

Notes written by hand in Old Town Cemetery’s 1898 Inscriptions state that there are many records in NY in Rev., p.253.

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Smith, Francis (1-009) Orange County Militia b. 1761 d. 1/3/1836 (7 listed in D.A.R. index)
Take comfort, friends, don’t weep as those, To whom no hope is given; Death is the messenger of peace, That calls my soul to heaven. Gravestone inscription.

In Ruttenber 1859, “in a letter dated “Abel Belknap’s, October 23d [1777],” Gen. Clinton writes: …. Col. Thurston’s and Col. Woodhull’s Regiments from the County line to Butter Hill, and thence along the Clove road to Francis Smith’s…..”

Thompson, James (3-274) Orange County Militia, 4th Regiment d. 8/17/1803 (38 listed in D.A.R. index; 3 in NY, none this Thompson)
Here lies a Husband and his wife, Who lived a pious Christian life. Natives of Scotland they both were, And now they rest from grief & care. They fell together and together lie, Forgot without posterity. Yet we hope with joy they’ll rise, To meet their Saviour in the skies.  Gravestone inscription.

Walsh, Hugh (3-277) Ulster County Militia, 4th Regiment b. 1745 d. 11/15/1817 (not listed in D.A.R. index)
Among the first inhabitants of the village of Newburgh, he took an early and decided stand on the side of truth and religion. His example and influence contributed in no small degree to its present state of religious improvement and gospel privileges. In him private excellence of character was associated with public usefulness and liberality. As a man, a citizen, a friend, a parent, and a Christian, his record is on high, and it is not doubted by those who knew him, that it gives his memory rank among the excellent of the earth. Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord; they rest from their labor and their works do follow them. Gravestone inscription.

In the biographical notes in Ruttenber 1859, this gentleman, whose family was of English origin, emigrated from the vicinity of Belfast, Ireland, in the year 1764. He settled at Philadelphia, Pa., where he was employed in the office of a shipping merchant, but subsequently removed to New York, where he commenced business, and where he married (1775) Catharine, daughter of Mrs. Jane Armstrong. On one of his visits here (February 22, 1782) he purchased from Benjamin Smith one-half of the block bounded by the river, north by Fourth Street and west by Smith Street, for which he paid $130. He did not take up his residence here till 1789-90, when he purchased from Governor George Clinton a large tract of land on the south side of the Quassaick Creek, including the water front on the Hudson. Mr. Walsh’s intention, at the time of making this purchase, was to engage in business in the village of New Windsor, which was then a commercial centre of considerable importance; but finding that the proprietors of the land and water fronts there were not only unwilling to sell, but were opposed to the introduction of any enterprises which might come in competition with their own, he abandoned the project. In 1791, he removed to Newburgh, and purchased the property on the north-east corner of Water and Third streets, including the lands under water, and immediately built a dock and store-house (the former now occupied in part by Mr. Mailler), and commenced the mercantile and freighting business (the latter from Newburgh to New York and Albany) which he continued for several years. He ran sloops from Newburgh to New York and Albany, and had a large trade in merchandise with the farmers of the surrounding country. During the century which has passed, the house has necessarily experienced a number of changes. The transportation business was conducted entirely in sloops until 1830.

Mr. Walsh also engaged in several other business enterprises. In 1792, in company with James Craig, he erected the paper mill afterwards for many years owned by his son, John H. Walsh, and now by his grand-son, J. DeWitt Walsh. This mill was among the first of the kind in the state, and has always maintained a high reputation. About 1794, he erected a large dwelling on Water Street (afterwards the famous “Mansion House”), where he resided until 1808, when he removed to a more retired residence which he had built on the corner of Western Avenue and Liberty Street. Here, surrounded by his family, and dispensing his hospitalities to his neighbors and friends, and especially to the clergy, among whom his house was well known as the “clergyman’s home,” he spent the evening of his life. He died in 1817, in the 72nd year of his age.

Mr. Walsh was one of the most active citizens of Newburgh in every thing related to its improvement, and more especially in advancing its educational and religious interests. This fact, however, is so amply shown in other parts of this work that it is not necessary to do more than refer to it here. 

Immediately after the incorporation of the village, an act was passed on March 20, 1801 appointing Hugh Walsh and others as Directors of the Newburgh & Cochecton Turnpike Road, with a capital of $125,000, for the construction of a road from Newburgh to the Delaware River. In reference to the courthouse, on April 6, 1793, Hugh Walsh was appointed to a committee to meet with a body of delegates at Ward’s Bridge to consult about building a Court House at this end of the county. “Daniel Niven, Esq., having been one of the committee chosen to convene with delegates from other towns at Ward’s Bridge to consult on the above subject, proceeded to make a report to the town, and informed the inhabitants that there was some prospect of Orange county joining with us, or rather that the members of Orange had agreed, or seemed inclined to agree, that in case the two ends of the counties might be united together to form one distinct county, that then a Court House might be erected at Newburgh and Goshen.” Hugh Walsh was then appointed to another committee to meet with others from Orange county and follow up. He and his wife were among the founders and trustees of the deed of the First Associate Reformed Church, and he was elected one of the first trustees. The church was completed in 1798, but its location so far south of the village growth north, the congregation moved in 1822, the church having been built on a lot donated by Hugh Walsh, who also donated a large part of the lot on which the parsonage was built in 1820. In reference to the building of upper rooms in the new Newburgh Academy building finished in 1796 for use as courts, “…the account of Andrew Lyons, the builder, only reached 350 pounds, and of this sum Hugh Walsh advanced 215 pounds, and was not fully paid in several years.” The Benevolent Society of Orange County was formed on January 16, 1805 with Hugh Walsh as president; “its object was to furnish pecuniary aid to those in destitute circumstances, and to guard the community against an abuse of their charity by artful imposters. How long it continued in existence cannot now be determined.” Hugh Walsh served on the Village Board of Trustees as a Corporation Officer 1804-1805.

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Weigand, Martin (0-000) Lieutenant (not listed in D.A.R. index)
Reputedly Weigand’s Hotel/Tavern during the mid-to-late 1700’s, which in Ruttenber’s 1859 History of Newburgh was on Liberty Street at Broad Street “a mere log-cabin with a frame addition.” Upstairs rooms housed the court of the justice of the peace and town meetings. In 1767, rival tavern applicants argued that there were 17 dwellings in Newburgh, and a second tavern was needed because without them the “place would become of no account and be deserted by its inhabitants,” and because Weigand had the monopoly. About 1780, Weigand moved to a more commodious building on Liberty Street, just north of the Burying Ground; and the old tavern was occupied by the father of Genl. John E. Wool, and was the birth-place of that officer. Later it was torn down by Benjamin Darby, who built part of the house known as the Downing house. In reference to the ‘forming’ of Gidney Avenue, in the minutes of the Trustees of the Glebe, Sep. 22, 1791 they agreed to “…allow a road of four rods wide to run through the lot from opposite Martin Weigand’s to the northward of a piece of swamp land adjoining said high hills.

During the Revolutionary War, the 1775 pledge of association whose signers were ‘avowed friends of the American cause’ was put in Weigand’s tavern for signing. Martin Weigand, Col. Palmer, and Col. Hasbrouck each had a wagon, and these were all there were in the place. A few persons had ox-carts in and about the village. Two militia companies of the South-east district of Newburgh were formed in August 1775 to repel invasions and suppress insurrections; Weigand was an Ensign in Capt. Samuel Clark’s, was an outspoken patriot, and eventually promoted to First Lieutenant. In a footnote, Col. Hasbrouck wrote, “Pursuant to the orders of Congress to the Regiment under my command, to be in readiness upon any proper alarm, I have appointed the place of general rendezvous to be at the house of Martin Weigand, in Newburgh Precinct.” For a short time in the autumn of 1782, the army was encamped at Verplanck’s Point. Immediately after this junction, the American army crossed the Hudson and went into winter quarters above the Highlands. [Gen’l] Wayne was at the old hotel of Martin Weigand, in Newburgh.

Wilson, Thomas (3-001) Ulster County Militia, 3rd Regiment (16 listed in D.A.R. index; none NY)

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