Monday, February 16, 2009

Giants In Our Land

Thanks to a person in Iowa who loves geneaology, i got this transcript of an obituary from Goshen, New York, reprinted in the Newark Gazette, one of many bygone competitors to the Advocate.

Jonathan Benjamin's son and daughters and sons-in-law were many of the very earliest European settlers in Licking County; his daughter Lilly married a John Jones related to my beloved Chaplain David Jones, who built the first cabin in Granville Township, had the first European descent child in this area, and on October 22, 1802, the first of that era to die a few weeks after her baby's birth.

Nonetheless, Jonathan and Margaret Benjamin came and homesteaded what is now the area around Union Station and Infirmary Mound Park, already married some 43 years, and celebrating their 76th wedding anniversary before her death. But Jonathan's story was not quite over, and it went back into a vast expanse of early American history, before he was buried next to Margaret near Granville's Main Street, just visible over the stone wall of the Old Colony Burying Ground.

I've told that version of their story before, but this is a glimpse of the regard in which he was held at his death at 103 -- i'll simply reprint this as transcribed from the original news story:

OBITUARY- Jonathan Benjamin

The Independent-Republican
Goshen, New York
Vol. 5, No. 17
November 26, 1841

[May have originated with the Newark (Licking Co., OH) Gazette.]


Revolutionary Soldier, -Died in Union Township,
Locking [actually Licking] Co., Ohio, August 26, 1841, Jonathan Benjamin,
in the 103rd year of his age. Father Benjamin was
born in Goshen, N.Y., October 14, 1738. At the age of
16 he enlisted in the army and served his time as a
soldier true to his country. Was married March 10,
1759 to Margaret Brown; moved to Pennsylvania in 1774
or 75. In May, 1777, the Indians broke in upon his
family and family connections, and killed and took
prisoner three entire families, his only son escaping
to the fort. Among the prisoners taken by the Indians,
was his brother-in-law, Ezekiel Brown, late of
Delaware co., Ohio. After being driven from place to
place by those savage tribes, and enduring extreme
suffering for some 5 months, he removed to Maryland in
the fall of 1779, thence to Pennsylvania in 1782,
thence to Maryland in 1897 [should be 1797], thence to
Western Virginia in 1799, thence to Licking, then to
Fairfield co., Ohio in 1804, where he resided until
his death. [Error- Fairfield Co. first, then moved to Licking Co.] In
1810 he joined the M.E. Church, and
remained an acceptable member ever since. In 1835 he
lost his amiable wife, with whom he had lived through
all the sufferings and privations of a piety [pious?] life, for
the almost unpresedented period of 70 years. He was
the father of ten children, and is known to have 77
grandchildren. He lived to see and embrace a child of
the fifth generation, and that a decendent of his
seventh daughter. For the last 30 years, Father
Benjamin has sustained a good religious character, and
in his last years took much pleasure in telling his
bright prospect of happiness beyond the grave. After
an illness of five days, he departed this life without
a struggle or a groan. - Newark Gazette

No comments:

Post a Comment