War Pension Application of Garret Harsin


The original record is handwritten. The following is interpreted by Ray Harsin on March 18, 2003. Where ##### are written, the hand-written document was illegible.



State of Indiana

County of Shelby         The Fifth Judicial Circuit


On this fifth day of September, personally appears in open court, before Bethaniel F. Morris, John Sleath, and Azariah Williams judges of this circuit court of Shelby county state of Indiana, now sitting, Garret Harsin, a resident of Sugar Creek Township, in the county of Shelby, and state of Indiana, aged seventy nine years, on the fifteenth day of June last year, 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 proper June 7th, 1832.


          That he entered into service of the United States under the following named officers and served as herein stated.


First: Sometime in the month of June, in the year one thousand seven hundred and seventy six, he, the said Garret Harsin, volunteered as a private soldier in the city of New York, for the term of five months, in a company of volunteer Rangers under the command of Captain Charles Dixon, of which company, if his memory after so great a lapse of time does not decline, Thomas Warner was First Lieutenant, and Garret Kipp Sergeant. Of the regiment to which the said company of Rangers, called The Swego Rangers was attached, General Scott was commander, and John Lasher a Colonel of the same. Being young at the time, and somewhat regarded of passing events, and matters which did not particularly interest him, he does not now remember more particularly the names of the several officers below giving to the said Regiment. The soldiers composing the said regiment, as he believes, were enlisted, with the exception of the company of Rangers to which he belonged, and of which mentioned has past been made. During this first engagement, the only battles in which he was either out – in defense of his country, was that of Long Island and Harlem Heights, which occurred about one week after the landing of the British army on the Island; an event which took place on the 22nd day of August, in the afore said year of 1776. In this battle, either throughout, or in part, General Washington was present and next morning, retreated across the Island to the city of New York. During this time of service, he is not aware that there were any regular troops where he served, unless at the battle of Long Island, and he is in consequence unable to mention the names of their officers. Besides the regiment to which he belonged and which has been mentioned, he remembers the second regiment, then under the commission of Colonel M Bougal during this first term of service, the ruley march performed was from the city of New York to the siege of the engagement on Long Island, and marched back to the city. He received in this case no written discharge but being in a miserable condition – destitute of clothing and ### of nearly all the nice #### of life – General Washington , about a week after the battle, and between midnight and day break, dismember the soldiers in a body at Harvest Straw on Northup River. When he entered the service, he was a resident of the city of New York, where he was born, in Carmen, now called Prince Js Street, on the 15th day of June, in the year one thousand seven hundred and fifty three, of which had he formally had a record in a Bible which has been lost.


Second: Sometime in the Summer of the year one thousand seven hundred and seventy seven, he the said Garret Harsin again volunteered, as a private soldier for the term of Three months, in a company under the command of Captain Moses Contine in the state of New York, to march against Butler and Brandt who were then at Seohario. He does not with any certainty, at this time, remember the names of the officers of the Regiment to which his company belonged and not having been engaged in any battle during this term of engagement, nor anytime with the regular army, he is of course unable to recite the names of any officers then and there in the regular service of the United States. About two weeks before the term of service had expired, the soldiers, who together with him had volunteered at the last mentioned time, were in a body dismember without any regular written discharge. The was at no time of this second engagement a resident at Sophies Landing, two miles from the town of Sophies, on North River, in the state of New York. The company was formed at and marched from this place to Scoharie where they arrived there and the enemy had fled.


Third: In the Autumn of the year 1777, and immediately after the dismissal of the soldiers 1st-mentioned, he entered a third time into the service of his country, as a private volunteer in a company commanded by the aforesaid Moses Contine in the state of New York. The term of service for which he volunteered at this time was three months. He is unable to state, with certainty, the names of the subordinate officers of this company, nor any account of the distances of times; but because, being a Baker by trade, the captain kept him generally engaged in the exercise of this calling, except when an engagement or some other emergency required his services as a soldier, at his post, or in the field of battle. The same fact, in some measure, prevents his remembrance of the names of the officers of the regular Army stationed or being where he served. He is afraid, however, that General Gates was commander of the army and that Colonel Wyckoff, to the best of his belief, was an officer of the regiment to which the company belonged in which he served. At the time of entering the third time into the service, he still lived at the above mentioned Sophie’s Landing, where the company was formed. He proceeded by water from this place, up the North River, to the city of Albany, and there by land to the town of Saratoga in New York. At this place General Burgoyne and his army were captured. The American army then escorted Burgoyne, as prisoners of war, to the city of Albany, where they were discharged, in a body, without certificates, at the close of their term. He was present and engaged in the said capture. #####....


Fourth:  In the close of the year 1777, he returned as a sailor on board a ten gun public vessel called the Hudson, of which Captain John Parmer was commander. On this vessel he served as a sailor, for the term of eighteen months. This vessel laid at West-Point sometimes as a guard ship and sometimes as a store ship and at other times was sent up and down the river, for provider for the army.


Fifth: Immediately upon leaving the Hudson, he entered the artificer’s shop, in the Quarter Master General’s department at Fishkill in the state of New York. There, John Parcels was Captain and Thomas Parcels his brother Foreman and Colonel Hughs Quarter Master General. In this shop he served upward of two years, making wagons, and doing other similar work necessary and proper for his army. He the voluntarily left the shop, with a certificate of services from Captain Parcels, which has since been lost.


At the close of the Revolution he left New York and settled in Bourbon County in the state of Kentucky, where he lived till the year 1826, when he removed to Shelby County, in the state of Indiana, where he now resides. He is destitute of all documentary evidence of his aforesaid services; nor does he know of anyone living who, from personal knowledge, can testify of the same. Some years ago, he applied through David Tremble , now a member of Congress from the state of Kentucky, to be placed on the pension list, but the application was unsuccessful, in consequence, as the said David Tremble informed him, of some defect in the declaration, which may have been as to his name, which is properly called Garret Harsin, but, being of Low Dutch origin , was usually, at the time of the revolution, both written and pronounced Harsen. He has never received any pension for his services. He states as persons to whom he is known and who can testify as to his character for validity, the Reverend E. Kent, and John Hendricks, each of Shelbyville, and #### Lewis Morgan, and John Morgan, who live in the immediate neighborhood of the applicant, in the above mentioned county of Shelby. 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 the agency of any state or Territory.


Sworn to, and subscribed the day and year aforesaid.

                                      (Garret Harsin’s signature)


We Eli#### Kent, a clergyman, residing in the village of Shelbyville, Shelby county, In, and John Hendricks, residing in the same place, hereby certify, that we are well acquainted with Garret Harsin, who has subscribed and sworn to the foregoing declaration; that we believe him to be 79 years of age; that he is reputed and believed, in the neighborhood where he resides, to have been a soldier of the revolution, and we concur in that opinion.

Sworn and subscribed the day and year aforesaid

                                      (Eli##### Kent’s signature)

                                      ( John Hendricks’s signature)


And the said court do hereby declare their opinion, after the investigation of the matter, and after putting the interrogations prescribed by the war department, that the above named applicant was a revolutionary soldier, and served as he states. And the court further certifies, that it appears to them, that Eliphabet Kent, who has signed the preceding certification is a clergyman, resident in the village of Shelbyville, and that John Fredricks, who has signed the same, is a resident in the same place, and is a credible person and that their statement is worthy of credit.

                                      (B. F. Morris signature)

                                      (John Sleath signature)

                                      (Azariah Williams signature)                                       Court Seal


I, Sylvan B. Morris, clerk of the aforesaid court of Shelby County, do hereby certify, that the foregoing contains the original proceedings of the said court, in the matter of the application of Garret Harsin for a pension; and that the said Bethuel F. Morris, John Sleeth, and Azaariah Williams, are judges of the aforesaid circuit court, which is a court of record; and that the signatures annexed to the certificate of the said court are the genuine signatures of the said Judges.

In testimony where of, I have hereinto set my hand, and seal of my said office, this fifth day of September, in the year one thousand eight hundred and thirty two.

                                      (Slyvan B Morris, Clerk signature)


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