Morrison's Pensions

Pension Application for Ruliff Voorhis

State of New York
Delaware County
            On this seventeenth day of June 1839, personally appeared in open court before the Court of Common Pleas now sitting in Delhi in and for the County of Delaware Ruliff Voorhis a resident of Stamford, County of Delaware and State of New York aged eighty years last January 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 served as a private soldier in the Revolutionary War in the Militia of the State of New York in the years 1777, 1778, 1779, and 1780.  That he was a single man made it his home at his father’s who resided about a mile from Johnstown.
            In the year 1777 he was out twice in the fall at Canajoharie which lay twelve or fifteen miles up the Mohawk River from Johnstown, one time he was gone a fortnight and the other time a week.  The latter time he went from Johnstown and Canajoharie under command of Lieutenant Quackenboss (1) where the company lay about a week & was then dismissed.  Vamp (2) was captain in the regiment which was commanded by Colonel Fisher (Visscher).
            In the three following years he was out very often and in the two last years in the summer season was out most of the time During the time aforesaid the said Ruliff was called out to the Blockhouse six times.  The last time was under Captain Vader, (3) sometimes under Captain Fisher (4) who was brother of the colonel and who was killed by the Indians.  The Blockhouse was at Sacandaga (5) about twelve miles north of Johnstown.  Colonel Fisher was scalped 22 May 1780 but not killed and then Lieutenant Colonel Vader (6) took the command.  Sometimes was under Capt. Woodworth (7) now and most of the time was under Capt. Vamp till the last year when he with most of his company went to Canada.  The six times called outt to the Blockhouse was a week each time.
            The said Ruliff Voorhis was called out to Johnstown ten times where he lay a week each time--Sometimes under Vamp and sometimes under Capt. Voorhis and thinks was once under Capt. Maybee (9) Who belonged to same regiment viz the one commanded by Col. Fisher.
Twice went up to German Flatts with the whole regiment when was out a week or more each time.  One time went with Regiment to Fort Stanwix to guard prisoners up and was gone ten days at least and the Oneida Indians came back with them and went down to Schenectady.
            Before going to Fort Stanwix the said Ruliff went to Cherry Valley with the regiment the next day after Cherry Valley was burnt, (10) arrived there in evening of second day.  It rained and snowed that night.  Saw one woman and four children lying on the ground. Officers as well as privates had to lie out, the fort (11) was so full.
            In March 1779 or 1780 (12)went on account on snowshoes after Indians. There were six of us after seven Indians.
            That one of the Indians was wounded by Woodward & the rest of our party and one of the Indians had to carry him.  We followed them fifty miles.  They had three days the start & we got five out of seven and the other two we reckoned had gone to Canada. We came upon them as they set around the fire busy roasting meat having killed an Elk the day before.  Their snowshoes were off.  Woodward clenched one threw him down and tomahawked him and tomahawked another, the rest were shot by us.
            There were a great many alarms when we were called out, but a day or two at a time.  At one time went to Canajoharie when he lay at the Fort a fortnight, during the time went to Cherry Valley upon a scout.  Twice the said Ruliff was ? out in the time and lost all and was glad to get off so, several times were called out upon a scouting party.  The said Ruliff once lay a week at Col. Vader’s on the Mohawk a little ways above Caughnawaga. There were fifteen or twenty men in company.  He cannot tell what they went for, recollects Capt Vader killing a sheep for the men.  At another time lay a week at Charles Van Eps (13) or Vanaps somewhere, about twenty men were there.--Can’t tell why we went there. Was a week he thinks at Henry Hans, (14) there were perhaps thirty or forty of us and if we had lain two or three days longer might have lost saved Hans life, for the Indians came soon after we had left and burnt his house and barn, murdered Hans, took off two of his horses and his two sons prisoners, though one of them was a married man but lived in the house with his father.  The said Ruliff was draughted to go to the Blockhouse & to Johnstown as before stated.  Sometimes the said Ruliff volunteered with others on the occasions afore mentioned.  The said Ruliff is very confident he served on the whole as much as ten months and during the times before specified the said Ruliff was not employed in any civil pursuit.
            He knows of no person whose testimony he can procure excepting his brother Garret who lives in Sullivan County.  In the several times called out on little alarms were usually gone two or three days & sometimes not so long.  Had to carry provisions along.  The said Ruliff hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present and he further says he has no documentary evidence of his services aforesaid and declares that his name is not on the pension roll of the agency of any state, that he has not received any written discharge from the service and the said Ruliff further says that in April 1781 he went to New Jersey about two miles from New Brunswick where he lived about three years when he returned to Schoharie Kill about two miles he ??? Towards Gilboa where he lived three years & then moved on the hill about a mile from Gilboa in Blenheim Schoharie County where he lived fifteen years, then moved to the town of Harpersfield about three miles from his present residence where he resided about thirty years & then moved to the village of Hobart of Stamford where he now resides six years.  The said Ruliff says he was born near New Brunswick in New Jersey on the 20th or 21st of January 1759.  He father’s family moved to the Mohawk Country about the time the war began and lived near Johnstown five years and then moved to the Mohawk River on the place of old Major Funday or Fonda where we lived one year.  Others went to New Jersey as afore mentioned.
            The time of said Ruliff’s birth was entered in his father’s Bible which was burnt up the Indians when he the said Ruliff lived on the Mohawk River and the said Ruliff and the said Ruliff would further state that he is well known to William Trotter Justice of the Peace, John Griffin Postmaster and Servinus Morris, attorney of law residing in Hobart aforesaid who with others as he believes can testify to his the said Ruliff’s character for veracity and their belief of his services as a soldier of the Revolution and he further says that the only clergyman who resides in the village remained here only some two or three months since from the state of Massachusetts & he is not much acquainted with him.
(Signed)  Ruliff Voorhis
Sworn and subscribed the day & year aforesaid in open court. [C.B. Shilvon um?]

End notes for Ruliff Voorhees R.10964, by James F Morrison

  1. There were two Quackenboss’s [Quack, Quackenbush, etc.] who served as Lieutenants in Colonel Frederick Visscher’s Regiment of TryonCounty militia [Third Regiment].  They were Abraham D. Quackenboss, 1st Lieut. in Captain Jacob Gardinier’s Company and Vincent Quackenboss, 2nd Lieutenant in Captain Hermanus Mabee’s Company.
  2. Andrew Wemple [W pronounced as V in German and Dutch] was a Captain under Colonel Visscher.
  3. Abraham Veeder of Col. Visscher’s Regiment.  Veeder became Captain of the Second Company after Captain John Davis was killed at the Battle of Oriskany on the 6th of August 1777.
  4. Captain John Visscher, brother of Colonel Visscher.
  5. The Sacondaga Blockhouse was built in April 1779 and was guarded by Colonel Visscher’s Regiment and other detachments until the end of the war.
  6. Lieutenant-Colonel Volkert Veeder of Colonel Visscher’s Regiment.
  7. Solomon Woodworth was the First Lieutenant in Captain John Little’s Company in Colonel Visscher’s Regiment.
  8. Captain Wemple and others of his company deserted on or about the 17th of May 1780.  Wemple went to Canada and later served as a Lieutenant in Butler’s Rangers.
  9. Captain Hermanus Mabee of Colonel Visscher’s Regiment.
  10. Cherry Valley was destroyed on the 11th of November 1778 by Captains Walter Butler and Joseph Brant.
  11. Fort Alden in Cherry Valley which withstood the attacks of Butler and his troops.
  12. A party of 7 Indians attempted to burn the Sacondaga Blockhouse on the 28th of March 1780.  Lieutenant Woodworth with five others went in pursuit of these Indians.
  13. Charles Van Eps served as an Ensign in Captain Jellis Fonda’s Company of Exempts in Colonel Visscher’s Regiment.
  14. Several pensioners refer to the attack on Henry Hans and his family.  I have not been able to locate much information on this incident besides what the pensioners have related.

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