Declaration for Rev War Pension 1843
State of Tennessee
On this 9th day of March A.D. 1843 personally appeared in open court
before the Circuit Court of said county and state, now sitting Richard
DREWRY a citizen of the county of Weakley in said state. Aged eighty
years on the 8th day of September last, 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 7, 1832.
That he entered the service of the United States under the following
named Officers and served as herein after stated.
He entered the service as a Militia Man soon after he arrived at the
age of sixteen in the county of Southampton, Virginia under Captain
______MITCHEL in the year 1778, and served to the best of his
remembrance an eight weeks tour.
From the great lapse of time and the decay of memory he is unable to
state the month or the day of the month on which his service commenced
or closed, but he believes his first tour commenced in 78 and ended in
79. In this tour he belonged to a regerment commanded by Col.
John Book WELLS and Major WELLS, perhaps a brother to the Colonel and
was second in command.
During this tour he was marched down to the county of Nansemond or Isle
of Wright he cannot recollect which, and stationed for some time at a
place called Mead Mill near the town of Suffork. While at this
place they were reinforced by a regerment of riflemen from western
Virginia, commanded by Col. DECK and he well remembers that while they
were there something like a meeting took place in this regerment.
The men asserted that their term of service had expired and declared
their determination to leave and return home at all hazards, but
through the influence of the officers it was quelled and they were
induced to remain until they were relieved by other troops from the
same section of the county from which they came.
From Meads Mill they were marched down below Suffork to a place called
Jenico where they remained for considerable time, during which the
weather was exceedingly cold.
His second tour of service he believes was in the summer of 1779 or 80
but he cannot be certain which, nor in what month it commenced or
ended. He can only state positive it was in summer, and that it must
have been during one of the years above named and continued for about
six weeks. This part of his service was in a company of Militia
commanded by Capt. Arthur BOYKIN, which was attached to a regerment
under the command of Col. Benjamin BLOUNT of Southampton County,
Virginia. They marched down to Blackwater Bridge where the road
crosses from Southampton Court House to Norfolk at which place they
were stationed for a considerable length of time and were frequently
sent out in small detachments in various directions to annoy and hold
in check the British foraging parties.
He states that his third tour of duty must have commenced he feels
confident in the fall of 1781 near the close of the war. This period of
his services was under the command of Capt. Howel MYRACK whose company
belonged to a regerment commanded by Col. LAWRENCE. He is by no
means so certain as to the names of the last mentioned officers as he
is in regards to those under whom he first served. He cannot possibly
remember precisely in what month or on what day of the month this tour
commenced or terminated or how long it continued, but he believes it
continued from six to eight weeks.
They were marched down to Surry Old Court House, where they were
stationed for some time. From there they were marched over to
Williamsburg, crossing the James River at Jamestown called Old
Jamestown. At Williamsburg he
saw General WASHINGTON and he believes he saw LaFAYETTE also, but of
this he is not so positive.
He remembers distinctly that there was at place a fine band of
musicians. The troops remained at Williamsburg but for a short
time, and from there they were marched to Yorktown. He aided for some time in the erecting the
works preparatory to the siege of that place and could relate some
striking incidents which occurred there until the surrender of
Lord CORNWALLIS. Unfortunately a few days before that
glorious event which it would have afforded him so much pleasure to
have witnessed, he had an attack of the ague and fever which rendered
him unable to perform his duties and an older brother having learned
his situation came down and took his place. Being there relieved
he returned home leaving his brother to share the honors of that
He remembers that among the troops at Yorktown during his stay there
was a troop called the black company or black regerment composed of
He further states that he has no documentary evidence and that he knows
of no person whose testimony he can procure who can testify to his
He hereby relinquishes every claim whatsoever to a pension or amount,
except the present and declares that his name is not on the pension
rolls of the aging in any state, district or territory in this country.
He deems it proper to state further that he make this application
before the Court of Gibson and not in the county of Weakley where he
resides because the place of his residence for the past sixteen years
was until recently in the county of Gibson and was cut off and annexed
to Weakley and the greater number of his old acquaintances and friends
who have known him longest and best and on whom he relies to prove his
character validity and integrity reside in Gibson County.
Sworn to the date and year....(signed) Richard DREWRY
aforesaid J. B. BLAKEMORE - clerk
[It appears that a list of persons that testified in Richard DREWRY’S
behalf is missing due to the statement of the Judge below.]
As stated in said certification that they are all creditable persons
and their statements are entitled to the fullest credence.
Wm R. HARRIS - Judge
State of Tennessee
Circuit Court March term 1843
I James B. BLAKEMORE, clerk of Circuit Court of said county and state
do hereby certify that the foregoing contains the original proceedings
of said court in the matter of application of Richard DREWRY for
In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and (seal) affixed my
private seal, there being no seal of office at office in Trenton this
9th day of March A.D. 1843
J. B. BLAKEMORE - clerk
Richard gave to the court
After the above declaration was read to the court, Judge HARRIS asked
Richard DREWRY several questions pertaining to the above. We do not
have the questions, but here are the answers he gave in court.
Answers to the several interrogations propounded to the applicant by
the Court as prescribed by the War Department:
Answer to No. 1: I was born
September 8, 1762
Answer to No. 2: The record of my age is lost, it was kept in an old
prayer book owned by my Mother for many years but what became of it, I
do not know.
Answer to No. 3: In Southampton
County, Virginia. After the
close of the War I resided in the counties of Southampton and Sussex in
the State of Virginia until 1799
when I removed to Tennessee. For sixteen years past, I have
resided where I now do. It was in the county of Gibson in this
State until by a recent act of our legislature it was cut off from
Gibson and attached to the county of Weakley.
Answer to No. 4: The Militia at the time I was called into
service was laid off in the county into sections or divisions and were
called out as occasion required by times or in rotation. When I
arrived at the age of sixteen years I was enrolled and drew for the
division to which I should belong. If my memory serves me right I fell
into lot No. 8.
Answer to No. 5: I do not remember that I saw any regular
officers or served with any continental troops until I was marched to Williamsburg where I saw
General WASHINGTON and other officers whose names I cannot
state. I remember distinctly that while I was at a place called
Meads Mill we were reinforced by a regerment of Mountain Riflemen, as
they were called, whether they were regular Continental Soldiers or
Militia I cannot state positively but presume they must have been
Militia from the circumstance of a meeting in the corps to which I have
referred to in my declaration.
Answer to N. 6: I received no regular discharge but I received
certificates from my commanding officers of service which I kept until
provisions was made that these certificates of service and all
such should be received in payment of taxes. I then disposed of
them to persons that had taxes to pay, I believe at that time I had
none or very little of my own to pay.
Answer to No. 7: I am acquainted with Mr. HUNTSMAN, Mr. CROCKETT,
Mr. WOODFIN, Dr. HESS, Mr. FITE and many other persons whom I might
name if it were necessary.
STATE OF TENNESSEE
I William R. HARRIS one of the Circuit Judges in and for State do
certify that the foregoing contains the answers of Richard DREWRY the
above named applicant for a pension to the several interrogations which
I put to him in open court in prescribed manner of the regulations of
the War Department, this 9th day of March, A.D. 1843
(signed) Wm R. HARRIS
I, Adam HUNTSMAN, formerly a
member of Congress from Tennessee, do certify that the Circuit Court of
Gibson County in said state is a court of record. That the
honorable william R. HARRIS is the presiding judge of said court and
James B. BLAKEMORE is the clerk thereof and that the forgoing
signatures of said judge and clerk are genuine. This 9th day of March,
(signed) Adam HUNTSMAN
Unfortunately all the efforts of Richard’s declaration failed to get
him the pension from the War Department at this time. At least six
months service was required to qualify and Richard fell short by a few
days. However, an Act of
Congress approved March 3, 1855 extended bounty-land warrant benefits
and provided for warrants of 160 acres of land on the basis of 14 days
service or service in battle. (National Book of Archives 10
Stat. 701) This new act allowed many more applications in behalf of
additional soldiers and their heirs and also in behalf of some who had
only been entitled to 100 acres in the past.
Notes by MaryCarol
Richard DRWERY died in 1850, but his widow, Jemima, received 160 acres
of land for his services in the
Revolutionary War on bounty land warrant number 34620-160-55. It
was executed by Jemima DREWRY on April 10, 1855 - sold in 1859 - 2
years after her death. The grandsons, especially John J. Drewry,
probably handled the paperwork as he also sold another 160 acres in the
same Barry county of Missouri in 1860.
The Family story that has been passed down through the generations says
Richard Drewry got a 640 acre land grant for his services in the Rev
War and that this land was his Gibson/Weakley homeplace.
Richard purchased his land in Gibson/Weakley from Adam Huntsman (deed
for 596 acres 1829, recorded 1830) . He also purchased his land in
Nashville area in early 1800’s (see deeds). We know by his declaration
above that he was given some pay chits at end of War but no mention of
him ever receiving any 640 acre land grant. 160 acres is all the U.S.
Government gave a private. Both the US Government records and the
Virginia records have been searched, without finding any mention of
Richard Drewry and land grants. Because Jemima got the 160 acre
land grant after Richard died it is my opinion that family members
remembered something about that and thus the story started.
Technically, he did get a 160 acre land grant in Barry County,
Missouri, but he was dead by then.
Richard was 16 when first served, just turned 19 when Cornwallis
surrendered at Yorktown. He states that he received “chits” from
commanding officers to pay taxes, which he gave to others as he had
none or little. If he had applied for a land grant, he would have
gone through the process before, and would have known he needed at
least 6 months service. He did not get married until 1788 so he was not
head of household until then. Also, his father’s will written in 1781
lists him as minor to be bound out until of age which was 21. Our
Richard was a teenager during the Rev War, but then LaFayette was a
general and only 19.
1st tour....end of 1778 shortly after turning 16 (sept. 8, 1762) into
winter of 1779 “cold”. about 8 weeks. Under MITCHELL met
riflemen under Col DECK.
2nd tour....Summer of 1779 or 80 about 6 weeks. Under Capt Arthur
BOYKIN who was under Col Benjamin BLOUNT.... both of
Southampton Co., VA.
3rd tour....Fall of 1881 about 8 weeks. Capt Howell MYRACK [myrick]
Reg’t com by Col LAWRENCE.. Marched to Williamsburg & Yorktown,
helped build the earth works at Yorktown, built fortifications &
fought, got sick, older brother took place for surrender of Cornwallis.
Older brother William ?
Congress officially declares Rev War over April 11, 1783.
Excerpted from "Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary
War Pensions," Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., originally
published in 1838, expanded in 1852 to include later records. Reminder:
These are partial records. In many cases, the applicant, widow or heir
applied successfully at a later date.
“Rejected application for pension”......[this would have been his
TN - Trenton, Gibson
****8-16-2008 - I found Richard's
bounty land warrant - No. 34620 - sold by Jemima (John J.) in 1859 -
160 acres in Barry County, Missouri. We have known there was one - just not
where it was located.