Revolutionary War Pension Application
George M. Lonis
Town of Stark, Herkimer County NY
The following information concerning the military service of George M. Lonis during the Revolutionary War is sent to us by his ggg-grandson, Maynard Lonis.
The following depositions by Maynard's son Henry and Henry Sits are copied from Revolutionary War pension application papers of File W20522, received from the National Archives:
Pension Application for Revolutionary Service of George M. Lonis
Declaration, in order to obtain the benefits of the third section of the Act of Congress of the 4th July, 1836
That after the Revolutionary War he often heard his father speak of his services as a soldier in the service of the United States in the Revolutionary War. Heard him tell of the hardship he endured and the cold he suffered in Montgomery's expedition to Quebec. Heard him speak of Montreal and other places the American troops then took and several battles they had with the British army and of their defeat at Quebec and the fall of their general the brave Montgomery. That under that enlistment he served about one year. And in the expedition to Canada he froze his feet. That he heard his father the said George M. Lonis speak of his service in the erection of Fort Dayton. Also that he was engaged in the Oriskany battle. That in that year he served under Bighead and also under Capt. Hess. That in the Oriskany battle his father had the ends of three fingers on his left hand shot off by an Indian and that the ball cut his hair above his ear. That as he was in the act of shooting, the ball of the Indian's gun struck him. That after close of the battle he took a British soldier prisoner and the horse of a British officer and took them to Fort Plank. That the horse had a portmanteau on in which was an officers coat and some linen and other things. That at Fort Plank he sold the coat to one John Walradt for six dollars. He also sold the horse. The horse had also a pewter tea pot fastened on him which the family had a few years since. Heard him speak also of serving under Capt. House and Captain Copeman. Heard him speak of Captain Seeber saying that they used to call him Rusty Seeber because he had a rusty sword and of several other officers whose names he cannot now recollect. Heard him say that he was in service at Fort Plain. Fort Plank. At Johnstown. That he was in service at Claverack from which place in a company of twenty four he went into the woods quite a number of miles to find a company of Tories that kept themselves concealed. The orders for them to go came from Albany. That he with the company went and in the wilderness in a gulch found their huts covered with bark and they took 12 men who had their families there but left the families. Heard him say he was engaged in the Battle of Durlack. Also that he was engaged in the battle with Butler and in the pursuit of Butler when he was killed. Heard him say he and one Miller at one time were sent on an excursion to Otsego Lake where they shot an Indian and discovered a large party of the enemy encamped at the side of the lake and the next day he with a detachment of the American troops followed the enemy down the Susquehanna.
That his father and mother the said George M. Lonis and Christina whose maiden name was Young were married the twenty seventh day of May in the year 1777 as appears by the original family record hereto annexed which record is in the handwriting of his father and was by him kept as the family record and which gives as this deponent was often informed by his father and mother the true date of their marriage and also the births of the children of whom this deponent is the oldest.
That his said father died in the month of August in the year 1814 leaving his mother the said Christina his widow who never afterwards intermarried but remained his widow as long as she lived. That his mother the said Christina died on the eleventh day of February 1837 leaving nine children and heirs at law whose names are Henry Lonis, this deponent. Susannah Widrig. Christina Moyer. George Lonis. Elizabeth Warmuth. Anna Spoon. Garret Lonis. Peter Lonis, and Godfrey Lonis who are the only children and heirs his mother left surviving and who are each over twenty one years of age.
*The following affidavit was given by Henry Sits in regards to the Revolutionary War pension claim of the heirs of George M. Lonis.
State of New York
That the said Lonas was married in the early part of the war to Christina Young and they had one child when he was in the service at Fort Plain. That the said Lonas has been dead many years. That he left the said Christina his widow who died a few years since.
That the said Lonas was sometimes called George M. Lonas.
*The following year, 1844, another affidavit was given by Henry Murphy of Stark.
State of New York
*The children of George M. and Christina Youngs Lonis received a retroactive pension. The certificate awarding this states:
I certify that, in conformity with the law of the United States, of the 4th of July, 1836
Commissioner of Pensions
Maynard Lonis also sent us this short profile of his ggg-grandfather, George M. Lonis:
George M. Lonis
1744 - 1814
George Michael Lonis served in the Revolutionary War. He accompanied Montgomery's Expedition to Quebec. He was wounded in the battle of Oriskany. He took part in other engagements and expeditions. (1)
Before the war he resided at Freysbush, near Fort Plain. He was married on May 27, 1777, to Christina Young, the daughter of Hans Christian Young (1728 - 1813), he who came from Germany. (2) They had eleven children. The family made its home in Canajoharie township until Aug. 2, 1780, the date of Brant's raid on the settlements in the nieighborhood of Fort Plain. At this time they were burned out, and having nothing left removed east below Albany. By 1790 they had returned to Canajoharie, to the area that became Minden, Montgomery County in 1798. Shortly after 1817 this region was set off from Minden, named Danube, and in 1828 became Stark township, Herkimer County, as it now exists.
George M. Lonis is listed in the 1790 census in Canajoharie Town, 1800 and 1810 in Minden Town. By 1810, two sons, Henry and George, are listed in Minden as having their own families. Two children of George M., and two children of his son George, are listed in the Geisenberg Church records, during the period from 1794 to 1813. Records of the church prior to 1793 were lost. It is believed this Lonis family lived between Hallsville and Starkville for many years, at least until 1847, when Henry died. Other sons had moved by 1825 to other parts of Herkimer County, thence to Oneida County, and to Oswego County.
George M. Lonis was baptised February 5, 1744, in the St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church, near Rhinebeck, Red Hook area, east of the Hudson River, N.Y. His parents were J. Nicolas Lonis (Launes) and Anna Margaretha Hentgen. George M. Lonis died in August, 1814. His widow died on Feb. 11, 1837. Nine of their eleven children were still living in 1843: Henry, Susanna, Christina, George, Elizabeth, Anna, Garret, Peter and Godfrey.
1: Pension application on file, W20522, National Archives, Washington, D.C. Placed in file under the name of Louis (Loues) for index purposes.
12/20/1997- Many thanks to Maynard Lonis, who is the direct descendant of George M.'s fourth child, George (1784 - 1860). Maynard also contributed other material about George M. Lonis' family, including profiles of his children, references to his military service from other sources, a transcript of the original Bible page mentioned above, including a copy of the original in German in George M.'s own hand, census and will information. Maynard has written the book "The Lonis Family of New York State" (1960, revised 1993), which can be read at the State Library in Albany, the D.A.R. Library in Washington, D.C., the Herkimer County Historical Society, the Montgomery County Dept. of History and Archives, the Mormon Family History Department in Salt Lake City, and 6 other local libraries in New York and other states.
Last Updated: 12/20/97
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