Posted By:J
Subject:Re: Looking for Proof of Rev War Service
Post Date:June 24, 2011 at 05:36:02
Message URL:
Forum:American Revolution Forum
Forum URL:

All free white able-bodied males aged roughly 16-60 (varies by time and place) were obligated to be part of the militia and available for active duty if necessary for local defense (within the County). They were also obligated to turn out for regular drill and nose-counting, which was not active-duty service. On very rare occasions, and mainly on the frontiers, some of a County's militia might be sent elsewhere in an emergency situation or on a major campaign with a larger group.

The Yohogania County Court record you mention does state when militia officers were proposed by the County Court to the legislature and if the Governor issued a commission. If the County Court record mentions that a commissioned officer took the oath of office, that was equivalent to an Oath of Allegiance, and is considered patriot service by some.

Most militiamen did not see active duty. Active duty for militiamen could include patrolling, guarding prisoners or escorting supplies bound elsewhere. On the frontiers particularly, it might include being part of a fortification garrison for weeks or a month at a time. Claims of pay for such duties are often included in County Court records, but the record for Yohogania was so abbreviated that such records might not have be found there at all.

So if your men are shown as taking their oaths of office in the Yohogania County Court record, that would be evidence of patriot service according to the lineage societies. If lineage-society membership is what you are after, you would have to develop surrounding evidence as to who they were, their life-paths, and family members, then prove your descent from the specific family member. Land records, tax assessment rolls, estate records and subsequent Court records may offer some helpful information.