“A Biographical History of Lancaster Co. Being a History of
Early Settlers and Eminent Men of the County” by Alex. Harris, 1827
Lancaster, Pa.: Elias Barr & Co., 1872
Pg. 368, MAJOR JOHN LIGHT was a native of the State of New York. but the greater portion of his life was spent in Lancaster (pg. 369). He early entered the American service as a minute man for the Jerseys, in 1775, and participated in the expedition that was made against the Tories on Long Island. He was in the division that invaded Canada, and participated in the battle of Three Rivers. He was a sharer in the privations at the river Sorel, and on the retreat from Canada to Ticonderoga. In the battle of Lake Champlain he was present, and was among those who defended Ticonderoga and other places, until the retirement of the British army to winter quarters. Upon his return home he immediately reenlisted, and was with Washington in his retreat through New Jersey, and fought in the battle of Princeton. He acted as guide to Gen. Washington, and to several of the officers who commanded scouting parties detached from Gen. Putnam’s command, when the British possessed Brunswick; and he was among the first of those who entered that place after its evacuation by the enemy. He was a participant in the battle of Somerset Court House, and several other skirmishes about this time. He was in the battle of Monmouth Court House, and also at Germantown. He was one of the light dragoons who guarded Burgoyne’s prisoners from New Jersey to the Potomac. In one service and another he acted with the American army, and was present when Lord Cornwallis surrendered his forces at Yorktown. After the revolution he kept tavern in East King St. for some years, ceasing this business in 1803. He was inspector of the 1st brigade of Lancaster Co. militia in 1800. In 1806 he was appointed a justice of the peace. He was a leading Democratic politician of his day, and a man of great influence. In 1818 he was appointed clerk of the orphans’ court, of the quarter sessions, and of the oyer and terminer. He was appointed in the room of John Hoff, deceased. He returned again to New York State, where he died about the year 1834.
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