Monday, September 1, 2014

Did you enjoy the Revolutionary War, Peter Troutman?

Back in May I made a list of potential ancestors who served in the Revolutionary War for a blog post around the theme Military Memories which you can find here. You know how it is, we make lists of ancestors who did certain stuff like the most recent to immigrate, all who came from Ireland, all who were blacksmiths. And we mean to take time to learn more about them and the common denominator but other stuff gets in the way. I really wanted to work on this list and see what's what, but there was always something else to do. That said, my recent interest in the DAR motivated me to get on that task and find out which ancestors did what.

Long story short, I've been working on what's called a Supplemental Application for the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution for two of my ancestors. They are Peter Troutman and Isaac Workman. Isaac Workman signed the Loyalty Oath of 1778 in Maryland so that qualifies him for inclusion in the list of DAR patriots. He didn't actually fight and I don't know why that would be but perhaps I can eventually find a clue about what he was doing then. I'll get to him later in another post. My main focus in this post is the other guy, Peter Troutman.

When preparing a Supplemental Application there are two main types of information needed: information proving relationships and connections between generations, and then information about the ancestor's service. My job is to start with myself and prove each relationship to each sequential ancestor going back to the Patriot ancestor. Then, when I've got that going, to document my Patriot ancestor's service. That's quite a challenge, but it is the way genealogy should be done!

Let me tell you about Peter Troutman, or at least what I know about him. He was born 18 December of 1754 in Greenwich Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania. His father, Wilhelm Troutman or Trautman, came from Germany on the ship "Neptune" and debarked October 4, 1752. Wilhelm is listed as a carpenter in the tax rolls of 1767-8 and had 60 to 70 acres of land. Peter and William, his brother, both served in the Revolution. In 1780 he was taxed as a weaver and owned a cow.

Peter's military service was choppy. Unlike other of my Revolutionary War ancestors who joined a particular militia company and served a chunk of time, Peter served now and again. I don't know how many served now and again versus those who just joined and served like my other Patriot ancestor Capt. Jacob Whetstone. It was interesting to me that both Peter and Jacob took leave when it was harvest time, as did many other soldiers. Peter served in 1776, 1777, 1778, and 1781. For a short time, some say, he was a captain. I'd like to see the records.

After the war both Peter and his brother William moved to Southampton Township in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. It's said in the reference material and numerously quoted that he and William were awarded bounty land there. I haven't been able to find it yet but really haven't put much time into the task. Should be pretty easy to find. (Famous last words??) Various authors make reference to "a Bounty Warrant per N-11651 - Bounty Land Warrant 40921-160-55 in National Archives".

He applied for a pension May 19, 1833 and gave his age as 77 then. He lived until March 6, 1846 at the age of 91 years. That was a very long life back then!!

My connection to him is through his oldest son, Benjamin Franklin Troutman (1780 - 1856). Benjamin was born in Berks County and moved with his parents to Somerset County. He was a famous gunsmith of the time the few guns still around and of his making are some of the finest of the era. He was also a musician known in the area. Well, the gunsmith thing makes sense because his father was a carpenter. Seems that his friends called him Ben. I think he sounds like a fun guy.

Ben's estate settlement dated February 6, 1863 names his daughter Nancy Ann Troutman who married Elisha Workman, also named. It's this connection that has me down at the moment. I've sent off to the Somerset County Historical and Genealogical Society and requested a bit of research by them on this matter and especially estate papers of his in their files. And now I'm waiting... and trying to be patient. Mom has used them before with good results in fleshing out her file on Peter Troutman so I'm optimistic that it will be worth the wait.

Nancy Ann (Troutman) Workman (1826 - 1882) was born in Somerset Pennsylvania and lived about 12 miles away from the location of her husband, Elisha Workman's family near Mt. Savage, Maryland in Allegany County. Somehow they met and became my Grandma Kelly's grandparents. How I now wish that I had asked Grandma Kelly about her own grandparents!

But I do wonder how the Revolutionary War impacted Peter Troutman and his family. It gave them land in the western part of the state and an opportunity for Peter to ply his carpentry craft. I wonder if he worked to build the church he attended, Comp Church. He was buried in their churchyard.

Peter Troutman (1754 - 1846.)


His son, Benjamin Franklin Troutman (1780 - 1856).
His daughter, Nancy Ann (Troutman) Workman (1826 - 1882.)

Her daughter, Moretta (Workman) Zeller (1859 - 1946.)
Her daughter and my Grandma, Helen (Zeller) Kelly (1894 - 1984.)

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  1. Just came across your post as I research William Troutman, my (5) Great grandfather. very well done.

  2. Hi there Dop! How about that! We must be cousins:)
    Cheers, Diane

  3. My ancestor, Michael Roll served under Captain Troutman in 1776-78, off and on as a substitute. Thanks for posting this great information!

  4. My ancestor, Michael Roll served under Captain Troutman in 1776-78, off and on as a substitute. Thanks for posting this great information!

  5. Hi I'm trying to find anyone who might know about a Phebe Troutman born 29 June 1800 in Ohio and died 5 September 1851. She may have married a Troutman because I cannot find any sources that can confirm her maiden name was Troutman. She married Valentine Lybarger in 1849. Thanks, Rose Lybarger Ogden