[ What follows appears to be a summary of the widow's pension claim process. We have not yet examined the actual application. ]
In the papers in claim R. No. 5661 filed by Sarah widow of Jeremiah Johnston in the U.S. Pension Bureau it is alleged that said Johnston was an orderly Seargent under Captain Fisher (proably Visscher) and Nichoas Jeroloman in Colonel Lansing's Albany City Militia in 1776 and 1777 ; that he served at various times in every year from 1776 to 1780 inclusive, was drafted from his own company on expeditions to Fort Plain Lake George, Fort Edward ,Stone Arabia, Heldberg, Canajoharie ,and Fort Stanwix, was in the battle of Stillwater and guarded prisoners to Hartford.
This claim was suspended for proof of service from the Albany records which was never furnished. This however is not surprising. `In the volume called New York in the Revolution we find on page 221 the name of Jeremiah Johnston as being the possessor of a land bounty right of 500 acres of land as a member of the 1st Regiment of theAlbany County Militia. According to the records at Albany he assigned his right to another. So that while he obtained no land for his services there is sufficient ground for accepting as true the allegations of his widow in claim R.No. 5661 before mentioned as the records at Albany of some regiments and companies are incomplete having no names but those of the officers, while in other cases the data are entirely lacking. Many men no doubt were drafted into different expeditions of whom no record was made or could be found. Such is the Acknowledgement of those who published "New York in the Revolution" on page 12 & 14. -
Jeremiah Johnston 's wife came to Albany from Boston when she was a young girl. Tradition has it that she was a school teacher. She left in Boston two sisters named Ward. One of whom, Rebecca married daniel Lilly of the firm of Lilly & Waite at that time the largest publishing firm in the New England Colonies. She was born in Hanover St. Boston and is alleged to have seen the "Boston Massacre" or some evidence of the same. Her husband was one of the Sons of Liberty and in him we have undoubtedly the identity of at least one of the famous Boston Tea Party. The forty men who disguised as indians dumped the tea into Boston Harbor. This is taken from the testimony of Sarah, wife of Jeremiah Johnston, who retained her faculties up to the time of her death in 1850 at the age of ninety one years. She had gained her knowledge from Rebecca wife of Daniel Lilly. His connection with the Sons of Liberty and his mysterious actions on the night of the event as mentioned by her serve to establish his identity as one of the Boston Tea Party to a considerable degree of certainty.
first posted: 4/30/14