My 4th great-grandfather, Paul Mink, was a Revolutionary War soldier along with two of his brothers, John and Valentine. Paul was born in 1753 to Johann Georg, a bookbinder from Altendiez, Hessen-Nassau, Prussia and his wife Gerdraut (Ziegler) Mink, German immigrants who arrived to settle Waldoboro Maine on the ship “Elizabeth” in 1753.
After locating Paul’s name, rank and dates of service, along with his pension request number, I sent a form to the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington D.C., and the following is the exciting record of Paul’s service during the War of Independence.
The actual record is five pages long, the first page pictured here. All five, full-size images can be viewed on my Documents page – items 7 through 11.
I can’t even begin to describe my excitement when I started reading and realized that it was a first hand account of his war experience!
The following is a transcription of the records, written out by a clerk as Paul Mink related stories of his war service. This had to be done in order for him to receive a pension, and the story is meant to serve as proof of his service.
On an historical note, the battle that he describes taking part in was the Penobscot Expedition. The commander of the infantry was Colonel Paul Revere, and the American colonists suffered a tremendous defeat and were forced to retreat, all American ships burned by the colonists to prevent them from falling into British hands. The infantry scattered and made their way through Maine, straggling back to their homes in small groups. After this stunning defeat Paul Revere was court-martialed but found innocent of any crimes.
The spelling of the original document has been retained without making any corrections. A blank signifies words that I couldn’t make out. I’ve also broken it down into paragraphs to make it a little easier to read. Here it is! :
State of Maine
County of Lincoln SS.
At a special Court of Common Pleas holden at Waldoboro in said County on the seventh day of September A.D. eighteen hundred and thirty-two, personally appeared in open court, before John Ruggles, Esq., one of the Judges thereof, …
Paul Mink a resident of Waldoboro in the County of Lincoln and State of Maine aged Seventy nine years, who being first duly sworn according to law, doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefits of the provision made by the act of Congress passed June 7, 1832. That he …
Was born in Waldoboro in the year 1753. He has no record of his birth to best of his recollection. That he lived in Waldoboro at the time he was drafted into the service where he has lived ever since the Revolutionary War and still continues to reside. That about the 1st of May in the year 1779 he was drafted out of Capt. Schenck’s Company into Capt. Philip Ulmer’s Company _______ after being drafted he first was marched by Capt. Ulmer to Damariscotta on to Townsend now called Boothbay. There we staid (sic) I think a fortnight or three weeks then went on board of the transport to Baggaduce.
That sometime in June 1779 we arrived at Baggaduce on Penobscot where we were landed in the boats and took on a ________ with us. While we were being landed the British retreated into their fort _____ after we landed the cannon from on board the (shipping?) I think from the “Warren” or “Hunter” or both, we dug several trenches and threw up breastworks to protect us from the fire of the enemy.
He next remembers that while digging the trenches one Christopher Newbit who was with us he was just raising himself up with a shovel full of dirt when a cannon shot from the fort of the enemy struck _____ of his arms, he think it was his left arm just above his elbow and shattered it so much that nothing but the skin held it on, he was within at least four feet of him when the shot struck him and recollects of hearing him say as he fell “I am dead”.
I think one of the Marines cut the skin which held his arm and buried it and then bound up his arm and we carried him to the river from thence he was taken to the Hospital on Fort Point so called.
He also says that he (recollects?) of Sam’l Bogs being shot by either the British or Americans he can’t tell which- Bogs and some others were out shooting cattle- he thinks however that he was killed by the British. This was the second or third day after we landed at Baggaduce.
Some weeks after this (he don’t recollect precisely how many) a British fleet came from Halifax and drove our vessels up the river as far as Sandy Point so called where the Transport we went from Boothbay on was burnt by us to prevent the enemy from getting a hold of. As he also says that the Ship Warren was burnt about the same time- he also further says that the Hospital on Fort Point was burnt by us after first taking out the wounded & sick- he further says he thinks the retreat up the river was sometime in August-
That after the Transport was burnt he slept in the woods all night and the next day he marched through the woods to Camden where he remained on duty about two months and got home sometime in the middle of November 1779 making the service on that expedition as much as 6 ½ months and he further says that he actually ______ out the time as above stated, he also says that while at Baggaduce he recollects of shooting a cow and taking 11 oxen and cows from the British.
He further says that he enlisted sometime in October, 1780 under Capt. Jacob Ludwig, Capt. Bornheimer, Lieutenant Winchenbach, Sergeant stationed at a place called “Jones Neck” about 6 miles from Waldoboro on the Muscongus River where he served (four?) months_____________ company was stationed there for the purpose of guarding the coast.
He does not recollect whether he received any written discharge. Martin Benner, Charles Overlock, & Francis Keizer can testify to his having served his country at Baggaduce & Jones Neck with the persons above stated. Gen. Lovell was the commanding officer at Baggaduce and Commodore Saltonstall, commander of the fleet.
He further avows that he received nothing but a verbal discharge at Baggaduce and that he is known to _____ McCobb_________ who can testify to his being _____________.
He hereby relinquishes _____________ except the present and he declares that his name is not on the pension roll of the agency of ___________ state.
Sworn to and subscribed to the day and year aforesaid
Paul X Mink
And the said Court do hereby declare their opinion, that the above named applicant was a revolutionary soldier, and served as he states.
Christopher Newbitt (Newbert), the poor soldier who suffered the loss of his arm on the first day of the battle, miraculously survived the ordeal. He returned home to Waldoboro ME following his discharge from service and in later years removed to the town of Liberty ME where he died in Sep 1826.
(Military Monday is a genealogy blogging prompt courtesy of GeneaBloggers.com)