Tag Archives: St. Mary’s County Maryland

Bennett Greenwell Revolutionary War Pension Application

Sacred to the memory of Bennett Greenwell, born December 7, 1761, died July 12, 1838, aged 77 years.  ‘May he rest in peace.’  Revolutionary Soldier, Bennett Greenwell, 1777-1781, placed by Lady Washington Chapter, DAR, Houston, Texas.  St. Francis Catholic Cemetery, Scott County, Kentucky.

Bennett Greenwell, a citizen of Scott County, Kentucky, was born in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, in 1761, and served his country during the American Revolution years of 1777 to the close of the war in 1781.

During those years, at the age of 16-21, he risked his life guarding a portion of the Maryland coast along the Potomac River – from Poplar Hill Creek to Flood’s Creek (notated in purple in the middle of the photo).  He kept horses at the ready to take expresses of information to those troops nearby.  The British gun vessel Roebuck was very detrimental to American navy ships, so it was important to know its location.  I could not find information on the Foy, but Mr. Greenwell’s spelling of its name may not have been correct.  This was the most interesting revolutionary account by a pensioner that I have read.

State of Kentucky, Franklin County

On this 6th day of February 1833, personally appeared before the Honorable Samuel Todd, sole Judge of the Franklin Circuit Court, now in session in the capital in Frankfort, Bennett Greenwell, a resident of the County of Scott and State of Kentucky, aged seventy-one years, who being first duly sworn according to law, doth on his oath, make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June the 7th 1832.

That he entered the service of the United States and served as herein stated:

That, on the 8th day of December 1777, he entered the service of the United States as a volunteer, in Captain John Greenwell’s company of volunteer militia, who acted as

minute men in the Maryland Militia, that Captain John Greenwell, with his company, was engaged from December 1777, until the close of the Revolutionary War, in guarding that part of Maryland, which lies between the Potomac and Patuxent Rivers on the Chesapeake Bay; that the said Bennet Greenwell was stationed, by Captain John Greenwell, on that part of the Potomac which lies between Poplar Hill Creek and Flood’s Creek, being about two miles on said river; that the duty assigned to him was to guard that portion of the Potomac, keep a good lookout for the British rebels and give immediate notice to Captain John Greenwell’s company of militia, or to Captain Shelton’s company of light horse, or to any other troops that might be nearest to his station when it should become necessary for him to give the alarm; that he kept two horses constantly in the stable, to be always ready to carry the expresses

during the whole of the time he was in the service, which was from the 8th of December 1777 until the close of the war, in October 1781; that he frequently carried expresses during the period intervened between December 1777 and October 1781; that whilst he as engaged in watching the Potomac and carrying expresses as aforesaid, several British vessels sailed up the Potomac and committed depredations on the inhabitants upon the Maryland shore, that he recollects particularly two British 174 gun vessels, the Roebuck and the Foy, which frequently sailed up the Potomac, that on one occasion they burnt the house of Hubert Blackstone at the mouth of Clement’s Bay (the other purple line), which empties in to the Potomac at Blackstone’s Island (the green island circled) and the crew took a great many beeves and nails from the island; at another time they burnt William Gwider’s house at Piney Point neck (circled bottom right); that on all of these occasions he carried his expresses to the nearest company to his said station; several of these expresses were carried to Captain John Greenwell,

several to Captain Charles Shelton, who commanded the light horse; several to Bennet Raighly, the lieutenant in said troop of horse and several to Bennett Coombs, the lieutenant of Captain John Greenwell’s company of volunteer militia.  During the whole of the period from December 1777 until the close of the war, as aforesaid, he was engaged as one of Captain Greenwell’s company, and by his orders, in watching the two miles on the Potomac and in all necessary occasions carrying expresses.  He further states that he never received any written discharge from the service; but that after the news was received of the capture of Cornwallis, Captain John Greenwell, who was his relative, told him that the war was over and that he was discharged.  He has no documentary evidence and knows of no person by whom he can positively prove the aforesaid services, except William Fenwick of Franklin County, Kentucky, who is about seventy-five years of age; whose testimony he will attach to this statement.

He hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or

annuity, except the present, and declares that his name is not on the pension roll of any agency of the United States.

Sworn to and subscribed the day and year aforesaid.

Bennett Greenwell

Questions put to the applicant by the Court:

Where and in what year were you born?  Answer, I was born in the County of St. Mary in the State of Maryland on the 7th day of December 1761.

Have you any record of your age and if so where is it?  Answer, I have none, but my father had which was in the possession of my brother Joseph in 1810 when I was last in Maryland, and I then took a copy from it, which I have examined and know it to be as stated above.

Where were you living when called into the service?  Where have you lived since the revolution?  And where do you now live?  Answer, I lived when called into the service in St. Mary’s County in Maryland, where I resided until 1795, when I moved to Kentucky and settled on the

waters of Elkhorn in Scott County, Kentucky, where I have resided ever since.

How were you called into the service?  Were you drafted?  Or did you volunteer?  Or were you a substitute and, if so, for whom?  Answer, I volunteered.

State the names of some of the regular officers, who were with the troops where you served; such continental and militia regiments as you can recollect, and the general circumstances of your service.  Answer, there were no regular officers with the troops where I served and no regiments wither of continental troops or militia.  The only troops where I served were the light horse cavalry, and volunteers or militia, to act as light troops, to fly from point to point, as occasion might require, to repel the predatory invasions from the British shipping along the Maryland shore of the Chesapeake Bay, between the Potomac and Patuxent Rivers, and also along the Maryland shore of both those rivers.

Did you ever receive a discharge for the service, and if so, by whom was it given and what has become of it?  Answer, I never received any other discharge than a verbal one from Captain John Greenwell

at the close of the war.

State the names of persons to whom you are known in your present neighborhood, and who can testify as to your character for veracity, and their belief of your services as a soldier of the revolution.  Answer, I am well acquainted with Col. Richard M. Johnson, who is now in congress; I am acquainted with Mr. William Fenwick, who can testify as to my service as a soldier in the revolution, and with Mr. Samuel P. Weisiger, Major J. J. Belt, Stephen Fenwick and many others who can testify as to my character for veracity.

We, William Fenwick, Joseph J. Belt, Stephen Fenwick and Joseph Smith, citizens residing in the county of Franklin and State aforesaid, do hereby certify that we are well acquainted with Bennett Greenwell, who has subscribed and sworn to the above declaration; that we believe him to be seventy-one years of age; that he is reputed and believed in the neighborhood where he resides to have been a soldier of the revolution, and that we

concur in that opinion.

Sworn and subscribed the day and year aforesaid.

William Fenwick, J. Smith, Joseph J. Belt, Stephen Fenwick

And the said Court do hereby declare their opinion after the investigation of the matter and putting the interrogations prescribed by the War Department; that the above named applicant, was a revolutionary soldier and served as he stated, and the Court further certifies that it appears to them that William Fenwick, Joseph Smith, Joseph Belt and Stephen Fenwick, who have signed the preceding certificate are residents of the County of Franklin and state aforesaid, and as credible persons and that their statement is entitled to credit.

State of Kentucky, Franklin County

I, Philip Sargent, clerk of the Franklin Circuit Court, in the State of Kentucky, do certify that the foregoing contains the original proceedings of the said Court in the matter of the application of Bennet Greenwell for a pension.

In testimony whereof, I have hereto set my hand as clerk and affixed the seal of said Court this 6th day of February 1833.

Philip Sargent.

Bennett Greenwell received a pension of $40 per year for his military service during the Revolutionary War.

The Gough Family of St. Mary’s County Maryland and Scott County Kentucky

Gough family gravestones in St. Francis de Sales Cemetery, Scott County, Kentucky.

Our story starts in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, when the William Gough family, including son William, emigrated from Gloucester, England, to the new world around 1650 – give or take a few years.  William Gough died in 1679, naming son Stephen in his will.  Stephen married Sarah Tattershall, and they were the parents of James Gough.  He and his wife Priscilla Heard fathered a child named James.  He was born September 15, 1748, in St. Mary’s County.  When his father died June 19, 1764, son James was given parts of several tracts of land.  I’ve always loved that Marylander’s name their land – much easier to keep up with them!  James Gough and his brother Ignatius were give tracts ‘Lady’ and ‘Margaret’.  He and his brother Stephen were given ‘Gough’s Mill’.  Ten years later when James married Susannah Medley, he was already a landowner.  About twelve years later the couple and their children were ready to make the move from the home they had known and loved for years, to the primitive parts of what was then Virginia, but would eventually become Scott County, Kentucky.

When the band of about 25 Catholic settlers reached Kentucky in 1786.  After traveling down the Ohio River in flatboats they were expected to continue on to the Washington/Nelson county area of central Kentucky, where many other Marylanders had made their home.  They were so enraptured with the beautiful, fertile land east of the Kentucky River they decided to build their homes here – now in area of Georgetown and Midway.

I would like to share with you today the gravestones of these brave pioneers.  The first church of St. Francis de Sales was built in 1794, and the Gough family worshiped here, along with many others who made that early journey with them – families by the names of Jenkins, Leak, Combs, Tarleton, Worland, Greenwell, James and others.

To the memory of James Gough.  he was born September 15th 1748 and departed this life September 27th 1826 aged 78 years, 22 days.

James Gough – father, husband and pioneer.

Susanna Gough born 15th August 1746, died 13th January 1795.

Susanna Gough was wife to James Gough; her maiden name was Medley.

Sacred to the memory of John B. Gough who was born February 29th 1767 and departed this life February 19th 1839 aged 72 years.

John Baptist Gough was the eldest son of James and Susannah.

Mary Gough died 16th June 1809 aged 31 years.

Mary Gough was the wife of John Baptist Gough.

To the memory of James Gough.  he was born February the 14th in the year of 1775 and died the 24th day of May 1828 aged 53 years.

James Gough was a son of James and Susannah Gough.

Ignatius Gough born the 28 day of march 1784 and died the 23rd day of March 1825.

Ignatius Gough was a son of James and Susannah Gough.

Ann Gough born the 22nd day of April AD 1768, died 7th January AD 1814.

I believe Ann Gough was a daughter of James and Susannah.

Ann’s stone has the most beautiful script for her dates of birth and death.  I’ve never seen anything quite like it!

George Gough born the 22nd day of may 1798, died the 23rd day of April 1821, aged 23 years.  ‘He lived beloved.’

George Gough was possibly a grandson of James and Susannah.  I love his epitaph – He lived beloved.  What more could you ask?

Henry Gough born the 26th of April 1800, died May 1819.

Possibly another grandson?

Sacred to the memory of Stephen T. Gough who was born October 15th 1818 and departed this life December 4th 1831 aged 13 years.

Stephen was probably a grandson of James and Susannah.

It would be nice to know exactly how all the members of the Gough family fit together – especially the ones who are probably grandchildren.  At least we know they all sleep together as a family.

Aaron Spalding Pension Application

Aaron Spalding, S37441, Maryland

Washington County, Kentucky, August 10, 1819, Age 67.

Enlisted one year, January 1, 1776, in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, commanded by Captain John Allen Thomas, under Colonel Smallwood, in the line of the State of Maryland Continental Establishment and served until July 6, 1783, when he was discharged on James Island, South Carolina.  He was in the battles of Long Island, White Plains, Monmouth, Brandywine, Germantown, Gates Camden, Builford, Eutaw Springs, Cowpens.

Affidavit of James Dowling, made oath that he served as a private soldier during the greater part of the Revolutionary War and knew Aaron Spalding as a private soldier during this time.  Dowling was in service and believe his statements made by Aaron Spalding.  This affidavit made August 10, 1819.

Aaron Spalding made application in Washington County, Kentucky, July 10, 1820, in open court, age 68, resident of said county, states that he enlisted in St. Mary’s County in January 1776, under Captain John Allen Thomas as a private in Colonel William Smallwood’s regiment and served until July, 1783.  He did not have much property, one old horse, 2 cows, etc.

Affidavit of Mark McPherson, who served with Aaron Spalding, enlisted in the Revolutionary War, 1776, in the first Maryland Regiment and continued in the service during the war with him, and at the end of the war he was first Sargent in his company.  This February 25, 1818, signed, Mark McPherson.

Jeremiah and Mary Herbert Pension Application

from Pioneer History of Washington County, Kentucky by Orval W. Baylor

June 7, 1833

Jeremiah Herbert, Washington County, Kentucky, age 70, states that he was drafted in 1781 as a spy in the state of Maryland, County of St. Mary’s, under Captain John Mills and served two months in the spring of 1781, returned home and remained about one month, when he was again drafted in July 1781 and placed under Captain Edward Morgan of the regular army and was attached to the 4th Maryland Regiment commanded by Colonel John Ruble, Lilburn Williams was the major, Mordecai Guess the General, who commanded the 3rd and 4th Maryland Regiment, and was marched from St. Mary’s County to Annapolis, thence to Georgetown, thence to Williamsburg, Virginia, thence to the siege of York, where he remained until the capture of Lord Cornwallis.  He was discharged in December 1791 at Annapolis.

Charles Montgomery, clergyman in Washington County, James Hiney, James Austin states that they are well acquainted with the soldier and believe in his statements.

Affidavit of Joseph Kibby made in Union County, Kentucky, stating that Jeremiah Herbert of Washington County, Kentucky, served with him in the Revolutionary War in the same company at the siege of York.  We lived in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, and joined the militia company commanded by Captain Edward Morgan, John Cross, Lieutenant, and James Amerna, Ensign.

Mary Herbert applied for pension, widow of Jeremiah Herbert, deceased.  State of Kentucky, Washington County, March 25, 1839, aged 73, said she was married to him in 1786 and that he died in 1833, and by him she had 9 children, ages as follows:  Francis Herbert, born February 22, 1788; Rebecca Herbert, born March 13, 1790; Elizabeth Herbert, born December 12, 1791; Eleanor Herbert, born February 22, 1794; John T. Herbert, born March 17, 1796; James R. Herbert, born March 6, 1800; F. K. H. Herbert, born February 14, 1802; Charles Herbert, born January 20, 1804; Mary Ann Herbert, born December 28, 1807, which appears by the family record.

Affidavit of Charles Powell, who states that the birth of the children of Jeremiah and Mary Herbert and the ages of the said Jeremiah and Mary as appears from the family Bible of Jeremiah are as follows, the birth of the children corresponding with the times stated in said Mary’s declaration.

Jeremiah Herbert born January 26, 1738 (marked in pencil as follows may be an error he said in January 1833 he was age 70).

Affidavit of Dorothy Jarboe made at the home of John Jarboe, who is her son in Washington County, Kentucky, November 26, 1838.  Made oath that Jeremiah Herbert was married to her sister, Mary Hill, in the year 1786 and lived together until 1833 when he died with cholera.  The said Dorothy Jarboe, formerly Dorothy Hill, is now 69.

Peter Brown, Justice of the Peace

It appears from the records that the Pension agent of Kentucky sent the family Bible in for evidence but it was never returned.

Abell Family at Rolling Fork Settlement

Abell Family at Rolling Fork Settlement

According to The Centenary of Catholicity in Kentucky by Hon. Ben J. Webb, 1884, the settlement on the Rolling Fork River, in Washington County, was begun in 1788, with a few families coming a year or two earlier. Some of these early Maryland settlers were Clement and Ignatius Buckman, and Basil and John Raley. Ignatius Buckman was killed by Indians. His wife and children heard four shots, and after waiting for what seemed an eternity, peeked through a loop-hole in the side of the house and saw six Indians taking the only two horses the family owned. Afterwards the body of the husband and father, was found by the stable door, scalped and with four bullet wounds. Other settlers who came within a few years were the families Dolan, Fagan, Fenwick, Forrest, Hamilton, Hayden, Jarboe, Luckett, Lee, Morgan, Mills, Moore, Spalding, Sims, Wathen, Yates and others.

Robert Abell also came to the settlement in 1788, from St. Mary’s County, Maryland. He married Margaret Mills before leaving St. Mary’s County, and they had ten children – several born in Maryland, the rest in Kentucky – Samuel, Jesse, James, Robert, Ignatius, Benjamin, John, Mary, Ellen and Janet. Robert returned to Maryland for visit in 1802, where he died. It is said in Calvary Cemetery – Holy Name of Mary – that a stone was erected for the parents – but neither are buried there. The father, Robert, is buried in Maryland, and the mother, Margaret, is buried at St. Thomas Catholic Cemetery in Nelson County, Kentucky.

IMG_0036To the memory of Margaret Abell who died January 1818, aged 59 years.  this tribute is inscribed by her children.  St. Thomas Catholic Cemetery, Nelson County, Kentucky

Jesse Abell, son of Robert and Margaret, was the representative of Washington County in sessions of the legislature of 1831-2 and Marion County in 1842. In the earlier years Marion was a part of Washington County, becoming a separate county in 1834. Jesse was married to Susan Wimsatt, daughter of Robert and Dorothy Abell Wimsett, May 28, 1808, in Washington County. Their children are Henrietta, Lucinda Lucy, William Madison, Samuel Benedict, Edmund, Mary Sophia, Benjamin, Albert Ignatius, Teresa and Benedict Joseph Abell.

IMG_7571Jesse Abell, born September 15, 1778, died March 10, 1846.  Susan, wife of Jesse Abell, born August 18, 1785, died August 5, 1847.  Holy Name of Mary Catholic Cemetery, Marion County, Kentucky.

Ignatius A. Spalding Biography

Perrin’s County of Union, Kentucky, Historical and Biographical, 1884

Ignatius A. Spalding, one of the most prominent and influential lawyers of the grand old county of Union, is the only son of Ignatius A. and Ann (Huston) Spalding.  Subject’s father, one of the most prominent men of his day, was born in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, in 1790, and has been twice married; first in 1828, to Miss Jane Pottinger of Daviess County, who bore the following children:  Samuel, Robert A. and Allethaire, all prominent citizens of this county.  Mr. Spalding was among the first settlers of the county, having settled in Morganfield in 1820, and was one of the leading merchants of the county.  He was a member of the Constitutional Convention that framed the Constitution of the State of Kentucky.  Besides this, he was a prosperous farmer and stockman.  He died at his home in Morganfield in 1852.  Subject’s mother was born in North Carolina in 1795, and died in Morganfield in 1877, aged eighty-two years.  Subject’s paternal grandparents were Benedict and Allethaire (Abell) Spalding, both born in St. Mary’s County, Maryland.  His maternal grandfather was William Huston, who was born in the city of Philadelphia, and was a soldier in the Revolutionary War under General Washington.  For many years he represented Washington County in the Senate and legislature.  Subject’s maternal grandmother was Susanna (Allen) Huston, born in Petersburg, Virginia.

Our subject was born in the town of Morganfield on December 3, 1833, and here received some six years’ training in the common schools of the county, after which he went to St. Joseph’s College at Bardstown, Kentucky, for four years.  In 1853, at the age of twenty, he was married to Miss Susan A. Johnson at Owensboro, in Daviess County, Kentucky.  Mrs. Spalding was born in Daviess County and is the daughter of John and Lucy (Huston) Johnson.  Mr. Spalding has four children:  J. J., a promising young lawyer now living in Atlanta, Georgia, married Bettie Hughes, daughter of Hon. D. H. Hughes, and has one child; Lucy C., who married Milton Young, the famous stockman of Fayette County, and has two children.  Sue Ellen is at home and Ann, the youngest, is at school at St. Vincent’s Academy.

In politics Mr. Spalding is a Democrat, and was elected to the State Senate in 1867.  He was also one of the Court House Commissioners.  His political importance in this county was first seen to clear advantage when, in 1885, his party nominated him for the Legislature without any canvass on his part, and in the face of a very active canvass on the part of another of Union’s worthiest sons.  Mr. Spalding accepted the nomination, and made a vigorous canvass, received a flattering vote, and made a magnificent race for the Speakership of the Lower House, as the choice of Western Kentucky.  He is now one of the State Railroad Commissioners.  He owns 260 acres of land, 100 of which is cultivated, and has a beautiful home in the south part of Morganfield.  Born in the Catholic church, Mr. Spalding has always shown himself a true son of Mother Church.  Through his exertions mainly, St. Ann’s was built in Morganfield.  Mr. Spalding’s address is pleasant and engaging, from from affectation and yet dignified.  He impresses his auditors with the idea that a very sincere man is saying things in a wonderfully telling manner, and carries them with him, unless they are firmly predisposed against his arguments.

Henry A. Miles Family – Nelson County, Kentucky


Ritchey and I spent two days at St. Thomas Catholic Church Cemetery in rural Nelson County, Kentucky, taking photos of the older portion of the cemetery.  The church is lovely, the setting serene, the only sounds are chirping of birds and perhaps a chipmunk scampering across the ground.  Of all the gravestones we photoed there was none so heartbreaking as those of the family of Henry A. Miles.  The loss of children is always so very sad.


John Barton Miles, June 6, 1775 – July 29, 1833, born in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, and moved to Nelson County around the turn of the 19th century, was Henry’s father.  December 23, 1802 he married Sarah Howard, February 20, 1782- November 15, 1860.  Sarah was also born in St. Mary’s County, Maryland.


Henry married Ann Eliza Read June 5, 1855.  He gave his age as 42, but actually was 38 at the time.  Ann was 17.  They both lived on Beechfork in Nelson County, Kentucky.  Henry and Ann were the proud parents of fifteen children!  All girls, except one son, William Henry, born in 1872.  Of the fourteen girls, four died at a young age.


Ann Catherine “Kate” Miles was born October 1, 1857, and died three months later, December 23, 1857.  This was their second daughter, their first, Sallie, born in 1856, was named for her paternal grandmother.  The Miles took the death of their children very hard.  Another daughter, Mary, was born April 20, 1868, and died six days later.  This is the first of the monuments that would be dedicated to their deceased children.


The third daughter was also named Kate.  It was quite normal at that time for parents to name another child for one that had passed on early in life.  This daughter Kate survived for eleven years, but passed away in 1870.  Our Kate, daughter of H. A. and A. E. Miles, born November 20, 1858, died March 27, 1870.


Another gravestone was erected when daughter Maggie died in 1879, listing all four daughters.  Maggie D. Miles, born June 11, 1874, died December 2, 1879.

In the 1860 Census of Nelson county Henry is listed as 43, a farmer, with wife Ann Eliza, 20, Sallie M., 4, Kate A., 1, Sarah, 80, (his mother), and Lewis Boone, 24, laborer.

In 1870 are Henry and his wife, and six daughters – Sallie M., 14, Fannie, 9, Lillie, 7, Josie, 5, Eliza, 3 and Annie, 1, along with Emma McGill, 16, a nurse.

In 1880 in addition to Henry and Ann Eliza are Sallie, 24, Fannie, 18, (teaching), Lillie, 16, Josie, 14, Eliza, 12, Hadenia, 10, Henry, 8, and Manie (Mamie?), 3.  Daughter Maude was born in 1884.

Henry died in 1889, Ann Eliza living on until 1920.


Their only son, William Henry Miles, married Mary F. Wilson in 1897.  They had five children – two daughters and three sons.


William Henry Miles, 1871-1920


Mary E. Wilson, wife of Henry Miles, August 5, 1873 – June 23, 1911.

All are buried at St. Thomas Cemetery.