Biography of Ensign William Fowler 4-July-2015 by Paul J. Lader
Birth: 27 Sept. 1761, East Haddam (Middlesex), CT, son of Rev. Joseph Fowler and Sarah Metcalf [Barbour, Vital Records, East Haddam, CT, p. 229; D.W. Fowler, Genealogical Memoir of Descendants of Captain William Fowler (Milwaukee: Starr & Son, 1870), p. 20].
Death: 27 Feb. 1782, of smallpox at the “Connecticut Village” winter camp near Peekskill (Westchester),
NY [Henry P. Johnston, Yale and Her Honor Roll in the American Revolution, 1775-1783 (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1888), p. 345; Franklin Bowditch Dexter, Biographical Sketches of the Graduates of Yale College, Volume IV (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1907), p. 145].
Marriage: Never married.
Children: Never sired any children.
Education: Graduate of Yale College, Class of 1780.
Military: Ensign, 5th Regiment, Connecticut Line, 27 Feb. 1781 [Henry P. Johnston, ed., The Record of
Connecticut Men in the Military and Naval Service During the War of the Revolution 1775 – 1783
(Hartford: The Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co., 1889), pp. 343, 345 (hereinafter “CMWR”)].
Cincinnati: Died in Service prior to the formation of the Society of the Cincinnati; first represented by a current
Hereditary Member who joined in 2015.
Occupation: Not known; he had graduated from college approximately seven months prior to his appointment
Discussion: William Fowler received an appointment to the rank of Ensign on 27 February 1781, and was
attached to the 5th Regiment, Connecticut Line, under the command of Lt. Col. Isaac Sherman.
From there, he was assigned to the company of Capt. Nehemiah Rice and Lieut. Joshua Whitney
[Johnston, CMWR, p. 345]. The 5th Connecticut participated in General Washington’s feint upon
New York during the summer of 1781, and continued service along the Hudson River under
Gen. Heath while events developed at Yorktown [Johnston, Yale and Her Honor Roll, p. 345].
During winter camp at the “Connecticut Village” near Peekskill, New York, Ensign Fowler
became ill with smallpox, and he passed away on or about 28 February 1782, almost exactly
one year after his commission [Johnston, CMWR, p. 345; Johnston, Yale and Her Honor Roll,
345]. The Hartford Courant of 5 March 1782 reported on his passing as follows: “Died of
the smallpox, at camp, last week, Ensign William Fowler, of East Haddam. He was a gentleman
of a liberal education, and much esteemed by all his acquaintance” [Johnston, Yale and Her
Honor Roll, p. 345]. The Connecticut Journal, of New Haven, reported on his death as well,
reiterating that Ensign Fowler was “much esteemed by all his acquaintance” [Dexter, Biographical
Sketches of the Graduates of Yale College, p. 145].
Due to the fact that he never married or had any children, Ensign Fowler remained unrepresented in the Society of the Cincinnati for 233 years after his death, until 2015. He is currently represented by Larry A. Scheurenbrand of Stratford, New Jersey.
Sergeant in the Lexington Alarm, April, 1775; 2nd Lieutenant 3rd Connecticut, 1st January, 1777; 1st Lieutenant, 1st May, 1780; transferred to 1st Connecticut, 1st January, 1781; retired March, 1782.
Connecticut, Adjutant-General’s Office. Record of Service of Connecticut Men In the I. War of the Revolution, II. War of 1812, III. Mexican War. Hartford: [Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.], 1889. p. 351.
Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April, 1775, to December, 1783. Washington, D.C.: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Company, 1914. p. 458.
Biographical information compiled by V. Allen Gray
Connecticut, Adjutant-General’s Office. Record of Service of Connecticut Men In the I. War of the Revolution, II. War of 1812, III. Mexican War. Hartford: [Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.], 1889. p. 353.
Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April, 1775, to December, 1783. Washington, D.C.: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Company, 1914. p. 70.
James Bennett was born 14 May 1755 at New Milford, Litchfield County, Connecticut. His parents were Caleb Bennett (1716-1790) and Abigail Fowler (abt. 1727-1771).
He died 14 November 1819 at Homer, Cortland County, New York.
His death was noted in the New York Columbian:
Another revolutionary patriot gone – At Cortland Village, Col. James Bennet, aged 64. He held a commission in the army of the revolution, and was interred with the honors of masonry.
The following appeared in the Cortland Republican:
Died – In this town on the evening of the 13th inst. Col. James BENNET, aged 64, leaving a wife and a large family of children, to lament the loss of a tender husband, a kind and benevolent parent, and one of those early patriots that were signalized by gaining the liberty which they now enjoy.
Col. BENNET held a commission in the army of the revolution. He was early enrolled under the banner which waved with various prospects for a number of years, amidst the perils of our revolution. He was engaged in a number of the bloody contests that signalized our emancipation; and whether the American eagle retired amidst carnage and destruction from a superior force, or triumphed over our oppressors, and waved victory to its followers, and liberty to its country, his hand was always ready to support the pillar of freedom.
His neighbors and friends, in disposing of his remains, have demonstrated their respect for the man, and those who have broken the shackles of slavery. He was duly interred by his Masonic brethren, with the usual ceremonies of that order.
On 21 November 1784 at Catskill, Greene County, New York, he married Catharine Bogardus. James Bennett died intestate and his wife, Catherine, was granted administration of his estate on 31 October 1821.
James Bennett and Catharine Bogardus had seven children: Nancy Bennett, Adolphus B. Bennett, James A. Bennett, Robert Bennett, Angeline Bennett, Eugene Bennett, and Catharine Bennett.
Sergeant Major of 7th Connecticut, 25th January, 1777; Ensign, 1st September, 1777; 2d Lieutenant, 8th September, 1780; transferred to 2d Connecticut, 1st January, 1781; retained in Swift’s Connecticut Regiment, June, 1783; and served to 3d November, 1783.
James Bennett began his Connecticut service in January 1777; he had served already for a year and a half in the New York Continental Line. He detailed his New York service in 1818, when in reduced circumstances, he gave the following deposition in support of a pension application:
State of New York
James Bennet of Homer in the county of Cortland aforesaid State of New York being duly sworn saith that he this deponent is an actual reside of the Town of Homer — that this deponent served in the revolutionary war against the common enemy as follows, to wit, this deponent enlisted in the fore part of the year 1775 into Capt. Daniel Mills Company in the fourth
[Dutchess] Regiment of the New York line commanded by Col. James Holmes and served as Sergeant in the company until the last day of Decr. in the same year whose time of service expired — further that in the forepart of Jany. 1776 this deponent enlisted into the first New York Regiment commanded by Col. Goose Van Schaick where he served in the capacity of Sergeant Major until the last day of Decr. of that year inclusive when his period of service expired — that in the year 1777 he this deponent was commissioned as an Ensign in the 2nd Connecticut Regiment of foot commanded by Col. Henan Swift in which Regt. and capacity this deponent served until the first day of September 1778 at which time he this deponent was commissioned as a Lieutenant in said Regiment in which office this deponent served until 1783 at the close of the war and was disbanded with the army at west point in June 1783 when the preliminary articles of peace were published and was liable to be called into actual service again until the arrival of the definitive treaty of peace when congress resolved that they had no further service for the continental army — and this deponent further saith that from his reduced circumstances he is in need of assistance from his country — that at the Battle of Monmouth he received a musket shot in his under jaw — that his is old and infirm & has a wife & three children to provide for with no resources but his daily labor —
And this deponent further saith that on the Eleventh day of Feby. 1798, his house was consumed by an accidental fire & his commissions and all his private papers were also consumed —
And the said James Bennett hereby relinquishes all claims to any and every pension heretofore granted or allowed him by any law of the United States.
Sworn this 13th Day of April 1818.
James Bennett’s father, Caleb Bennett, was a member of New Milford, Connecticut’s Committee of Inspection and Correspondence.
James’ oldest brother, Isaac Bennett (b. 1747) lived at Stockbridge, Massachusetts and was member of a militia unit in that location. Another brother, Samuel Bennett (b. 1750) is reported in one source to have been a Captain in the Revolution; however, that has not been confirmed. A younger brother, Caleb (b. 1758) was a member of a New Milford militia company from mid 1776 until late 1779 when he moved to Stockbridge, Massachusetts to live with his brother, Isaac.
Abstracts of Wills, Administrations and Guardianships in NY State, 1787 – 1835. (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2006.) Original manuscript in Eardeley Genealogy Collection: New York State Abstracts of Wills, Brooklyn Historical Society. Cortland, p. 574.
Connecticut. Adjutant-General’s Office. Record of Service of Connecticut Men In the I. War of the Revolution, II. War of 1812, III. Mexican War. Hartford: [Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.], 1889. pp. 218, 328, 352 & 373.
Cortland Republican, 18 Nov 1819. (http://www.usgenweb.info/nycortland/vitals/d1815-21.htm : accessed 05 March 2015)
Frank Hasbrouck, The History of Dutchess County, New York, v. 1. Poughkeepsie: S. A. Matthieu, 1909. p. 122.
Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April, 1775, to December, 1783. Washington, D.C.: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Company, 1914. p. 99.
Frank Hasbrouck, ed.,The History of Dutchess County, New York, vol. 1. Poughkeepsie, N.Y.: S. A. Matthieu, 1909, pp. 120-122.
Donald Lines Jacobus, History and Genealogy of the Families of Old Fairfield, v. 1. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2007. p. 73.
“Died”, New-York Columbian, 01 December 1819. p. 2, col. 5.
Samuel Orcutt, History of the Towns of New Milford and Bridgewater, Connecticut, 1703-1882. Hartford: Press of Case, Lockwood and Brainard Co., 1882. pp. 217, 651-652.
Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 15. Fold3.com(http://www.fold3.com/image/15190966/). Connecticut. James Bennett, Pension W. 16191.
Biographical information compiled by V. Allen Gray.
Stephen Betts was born on 15 July 1756 at Norwalk. He was the son of Isaac and Elizabeth Betts. Stephen Betts had a sister, Ann Betts.
Stephen Betts died on 28 November 1832. He is buried in Church Hill Cemetery, New Canaan, Fairfield County, Connecticut. Also buried in the Church Hill Cemetery is his wife, Ruth, who died 24 March 1835.
He was married to Ruth Church 04 January 1784.
Charles (b. 1784), Harriet (1786-1795), Esther (b. 1790), Lewis (b. 1796), Harriet (1798).
1st Lieutenant 7th Connecticut, 6th July to 23d December 1775; 1st Lieutenant 19th Continental Infantry, 1st January to 31st December, 1776; Captain 2d Connecticut, 1st January, 1777; transferred to 3d Connecticut, 1st January, 1781; wounded at Yorktown, 14th October 1781; served to close of war; Brevet Major, 30th September, 1783.
Stephen Betts enlisted in July 1775, served as Sergeant, Ensign, Second Lieutenant and First Lieutenant in Captain Joseph Hait’s company, Colonel Charles Webb’s Connecticut regiment. On Jnuary 1, 1777, he was commissioned Captain and served to the end of the Revolutionary War in Colonels Charles’s Webb’s and Samuel B. Webb’s Connecticut regiments. On October 10, 1783, he was commissioned Brevet Major in the United States Army. During his service in the Revolution he was in the battles of Trenton, Monmouth and at the siege of Yorktown and surrender of Cornwallis.
Stephen Betts was issued bounty land warrant #139 for 300 acres on 18 May 1789.
Stephen Betts was allowed pension on his application executed April 28, 1818, while a resident of New Canaan, Fairfield County, Connecticut where he had resided since the close of the war and was still living in 1828.
Capt. Stephen Betts was a member of one of two traveling Masonic Lodges at West Point, American Union No. 1. Among the other members were Col. Samuel Wyllys, Major Jonathan Heart, Lt. Robert Allyn, Dr. John Simpson, Dr. Jedediah Ensworth, Col. Rufus Putnam, Lt. Isaac Tiffany and others of the Connecticut Line.
Connecticut. Adjutant-General’s Office. Record of Service of Connecticut Men In the I. War of the Revolution, II. War of 1812, III. Mexican War. Hartford: [Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.], 1889. pp. 79, 104, 306, 334, 354, 367, 374 & 633.
“Deaths”, Connecticut Courant, Hartford, Connecticut, 18 December 1832, p. 3, col. 4.
Connecticut Vital Records to 1870 (Online Database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011.) From original typescripts, Lucius Barnes Barbour Collection, 1928. Norwalk, pp. 14-17.
Edwin Hall, The Ancient Historical Records of Norwalk, Conn.; with a Plan of the Ancient Settlement and of the Town in 1847. New York: Ivison, Phinney, Blakeman & Co., 1865. p. 259.
Gary L. Heinmiller, Membership in American Union Lodge No. 1 during the Revolutionary War. (http://www.omdhs.syracusemasons.com/sites/default/files/history/American%20Union%20Lodge%20No.%201%20-%20Membership.pdf)
Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April, 1775, to December, 1783. Washington, D.C.: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Company, 1914. p. 102.
Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 15. Fold3.com(http://www.fold3.com/image/13928087/). Connecticut. Stephen Betts, Pension S37749.
Rev. Charles M. Selleck, Address by Rev. Charles M. Selleck at the Centenary of St. Paul’s Church, Norwalk, Conn., July 15, 1886. Norwalk: The Hour Printing Office, 1886. pp. 26-27.
Biographical information compiled by V. Allen Gray
Served in the Lexington Alarm, April, 1775; 1st Lieutenant 2d Connecticut, 8th September to 10th December, 1775; 1st Lieutenant 22d Continental Infantry, 1st January, 1776; Captain , May, 1776; Brigade Major to General Heath, August, 1776; Major of Webb’s Continental Regiment, 1st January, 1777; Lieutenant Colonel, 10th October, 1778; transferred to 1st Connecticut, 1st January, 1783; retained in Swift’s Connecticut Regiment, June, 1783, and served to 3d November, 1783; Brigadier General United States Army, 19th July, 1798; honorably discharged, 15th June, 1800.
Connecticut, Adjutant-General’s Office. Record of Service of Connecticut Men In the I. War of the Revolution, II. War of 1812, III. Mexican War. Hartford: [Case, Lockwood & Brainard Co.], 1889. p. 354.
Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution April, 1775, to December, 1783. Washington, D.C.: The Rare Book Shop Publishing Company, 1914. p. 310.
Birth: 17 May 1754, Salisbury (Litchfield) CT [D. Williams Patterson, John Stoddard of Wethersfield, CT (1873), p. 33; Find-a-grave (died in his 37th year)].
Death: 12 July 1790, Salisbury (Litchfield) CT [Stoddard, p. 33; Gravestone photo; Malcolm Day Rudd, Men of Worth of Salisbury Birth, The Salisbury Quadrimillenium Edition, (The Salisbury Assoc., 1991), p. 161].
Marriage: Mary Holley, daughter of John and Sarah (Lord) Holley. Marriage date unknown, and several years after Darius Stoddard’s death, Mary is believed to have wed Elias Hall, of Castleton VT, an officer of the Revolutionary War. [Men of Worth, p. 161]
Children: There is no record of children.
Education: He was trained in medicine and surgery, but it is not known by whom. By the start of the war, Dr. Stoddard was fully qualified to practice medicine and quickly signed on to serve as a Surgeon’s Mate and Surgeon in the Continental Army. [Men of Worth, p. 160]
Military: The first record of Dr. Stoddard’s service began 1 Jan 1777, as Surgeon’s Mate and Surgeon in the Hospital Department of the Continental Army, at the age of 22. He continued service to the Continental Army, Hospital Dept. for a period of 5 years, serving for some of that time as Surgeon, Col. Henry Jackson’s Regiment. [Secretary of the Commonwealth, Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, Vol. 15 (Boston, MA, 1907), p. 62. hereinafter “MSSRW”; CT Adjutants General, Records of Service of Connecticut Men in the War of the Revolution (Hartford CT, 1889) p. 629, hereinafter “CMWR”; Francis Heitman, Historical Register, Officers of the Continental Army (WashingtonDC. Rare Book Co. 1914) p. 522].
Cincinnati: Darius Stoddard never joined the Society of the Cincinnati prior to his untimely death at the age of 37 and there is no record he left any children; he was first represented by Hereditary Member (Rule of 1854) who joined in 2013, just 8 days prior to the 223rd anniversary of Dr. Stoddard’s death.
Occupation: Physician, surgeon [Men of Worth, p. 160; records of the Continental Army, Hospital Dept. service].
Discussion: Darius Stoddard was the fifth of nine children born to Josiah and Sarah (Robbarts) Stoddard, and the fourth of five boys. Four of the Stoddard boys served with distinction during the War; elder brothers Luther (2nd LT, Hinman’s 4th CT; Capt., Burrall’s CT Reg.) and Josiah (Capt., 2nd Continental Light Dragoons), and younger brother Samuel (Sergt., Warner’s Regt. and 2nd CT Line). His father died in 1764, leaving the 10 year old Darius’ guardianship to the executor of his father’s will. However, upon reaching legal age Darius was able to select his own guardian and chose Nathaniel Buell. Darius and his two older brothers were widely known and respected for their bravery and patriotic service throughout the war, but the trio was also well known for their quick tempers and unseemly behavior. Although often finding themselves in trouble, Darius generally put his abundant energy to good use throughout his war time service as a Surgeon’s Mate and Surgeon, serving in the Hospital Department throughout much of the war. However, frequent disagreements with fellow patriots were not uncommon and perhaps the most famous incident in his military service occurred in the fall of 1780, when he raised serious charges against his late-brother’s commander, Col. Elisha Sheldon, 2nd Light Dragoons. The conclusion of Sheldon’s general court-martial ended with the Colonel acquitted of all charges, “with honor and approbation” and Stoddard fined for the expenses of the trial for bringing charges deemed without merit. After the war, Dr. Stoddard continued to practice medicine in his hometown of Salisbury and in eastern New York until the time of his death. Stoddard and his brother, Luther, joined the Montgomery Lodge of Masons in 1783, the year of the lodge’s founding. The lodge is still active to this day, known as Montgomery Lodge No. 13. As the war ended, he petitioned Congress and the Connecticut State Assembly, finally receiving his back pay earned during the War. However, he became consumed with land speculation deals in Virginia and found himself accumulating great debts, which landed him in jail from time to time. After a brief stay in jail in 1790, he became ill and soon thereafter died of consumption. He is buried next to his father in Town Hill Cemetery, which can be found on the campus of the Hotchkiss School, Lakeville, CT. His headstone is inscribed with the following words: “In Memory of Doctor Darius Stoddard, who Died July 12th 1790 in the 37th year of his age. Nor shill, nor art the shafts of death can shun, But all alike his Icy arms must try; How short our time, how soon our race is run, Then let’s with care to Christ for shelter fly.”
[Men of Worth, p. 157-161; Find-a-grave and gravestone photo; “CMWR”, pp. 61, 93, 110, 257, 272, 327; “Heitman’s Historical Register”, p. 522; Dr. Darius Stoddard, Letter to the CT General Assembly, dated 15 October 1782 (Connecticut State Archives: Revolutionary War, 1763-1789), series 1, roll 23, p. 263; Montgomery Lodge No. 13, Lakeville, CT (www.montgomerylodge13.org)].