Sanbun Ford: An American Revolutionary Rediscovered

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Sanbun Ford grave markerIn 1976, because the nation ready to have fun its 2 hundredth birthday, my mother and father have been already a yr into the hunt for data of an elusive ancestor: Sanbun Ford, a founding father of the city of Milton, in Saratoga County.Journeys to native court docket homes and cities in New England resulted in a Ford household family tree story, relationship again to 1637, that was introduced to my grandfather, Joseph Ford, a retired paper mill electrician from Mechanicville. In 1976, he was invited to Milton’s Founders Day celebration the place he and different descendants of the city’s early settlers have been welcomed as friends of honor.Via my mother and father’ long-ago sleuthing and my very own analysis, our household has realized way more about Sanbun Ford. He was born on April twenty third, 1762 in Wallingford, CT, the fifth-generation Ford descended from Timothy Ford, an Englishman who arrived in New England circa 1637.On December 4th, 1779, Sanbun enlisted as a personal within the 2nd Continental Mild Dragoons, often known as Sheldon’s Horse for its commander, Col. Elisha Sheldon. There are indications that he joined the revolutionary trigger to switch a sick older brother. Sanbun would serve five-and-half years with the unit. Nathaniel Bartlett Sylvester’s Historical past of Saratoga County, New York (1878) has a paragraph describing Sanbun as having served from Bunker Hill to Yorktown, however I’m nonetheless engaged on verifying particulars of his service.Sylvester’s e book additionally mentions that Sanbun as soon as captured a “cowboy” by making him place his finger into the barrel of Sanbun’s pistol. Cowboy was a time period used to explain loyalists who attacked residents and stole livestock and private possessions round Westchester County, the scene of vicious partisan preventing in the course of the Revolutionary Struggle.We all know from Sanbun’s 1837 utility for a army pension, that he captured the infamous loyalist Jesse Mills, who was among the many 450 Westchester loyalists despatched on two ships to Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada after the battle.A roster of Sanbun’s regiment compiled by Maj. Benjamin Tallmadge reveals that he was 5 ft, 3 inches tall with mild complexion, grey eyes and brown hair. Like many veterans of the battle, Sanbun was rewarded with land by Congress for his service. In 1790, he and his spouse, Ada, and their first baby, Simeon, settled in Hillsdale, in Columbia County.Two years later, they moved to Milton in Saratoga County. Collectively, Sanbun and Ada raised 9 youngsters, 4 boys and 5 ladies. At the very least two sons would struggle within the Struggle of 1812. (The daughters would go on to marry males with final names Corridor, Shepard, McLean, Irish and Lewis.)Grandsons of Sanbun and Ada would struggle within the Civil Struggle. Their names may be discovered on the Civil Struggle monument positioned at Low and Entrance streets within the village of Ballston Spa. There’s a avenue named after the Fords, lots of whom are buried within the Village Cemetery in Ballston Spa. Later generations of Fords branched out to Mechanicville and Inexperienced Island. Others ended up in western New York.Varied paperwork be aware that Sanbun settled at Spiers Corners, now West Milton, and later ran a public home close to the Rosehill farm of Decide John Thompson the place getting old veterans of the Revolution Struggle dined and reminisced about their wartime service. In the course of the Struggle of 1812, after U.S. victories, Sanbun and the Rev. Elder Langworthy would fireplace off a cannon that they had bought in Albany.By 1820, Sanbun was destitute and penniless, dwelling off his Revolutionary Struggle pension and the generosity of fellow members of the native Baptist church. Employed to ring the church bell, he finally had to surrender that obligation resulting from poor eyesight. A spiritual man, Sanbun known as his Bible his sidearm (a time period that dates to the seventeenth century).Sanbun died at 84 years outdated on October twentieth, 1846, a year-and-a-half after his spouse Ada. Earlier than he died, he requested that an American flag, his Bible and Continental Military papers be buried with him.Sanbun was buried in an unmarked grave within the Village Cemetery, Ballston Spa. An opportunity assembly with cemetery caretaker Wealthy Fox led me to the placement of the Ford plots. I then went to work buying a veteran’s grave marker from the U.S. Division of Veterans Affairs.The marker was positioned on Sanbun’s grave simply previous to July 4th, 2017. Each Fourth of July, I place two American flags on his ultimate resting place as a tribute to a Patriot as soon as forgotten, now remembered.Photograph of Sanbun Ford grave marker, Village Cemetery, Ballston Spa.Don Carola in a neighborhood historical past buff who was born and raised in Mechanicville. He retired from the state after 33 years from NYSITS as Supervisor of Info Know-how. Don is a volunteer firefighter for Hillcrest Fireplace Division. He’s additionally a member of Rev Struggle reenactor unit 2nd Continental Mild Dragoons “Sheldon’s Horse” out of Connecticut. Don may be reached at doncarola@nycap.rr.com.This essay is introduced by the Saratoga County Historical past Roundtable and the Saratoga County Historical past Middle. Comply with them on Twitter and Fb.Print Friendly, PDF & Email

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