Capt David Perry's Recollections: Chapter 1. Childhood 1741-1757

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Revolutionary soldier by A. Chappel

(Chapters One through Five Inclusive.)

Chapter I
Childhood 1741-1757.
Parentage, King George's War, 
and the Beginning of the French & Indian War.  
[ To order a hard copy of Recollections click here. ]

jump was born August 8th, (O.S.) 1741 in the town of Rehoboth, Mass.  I was the oldest child of Eliakim and Sarah Perry.  The first thing of consequence that occurs to my mind, was the transactions relating to the war between the English and French. An army was raised• in the New-England• States, to go against Cape Breton,• under Gen. Pepperell,• at which time I was in my fifth year.  My father and one of his brothers, and also one of my mother's brothers, enlisted into this army.   And what strengthens my memory with regard to these events, one of my uncles above mentioned, whose name was Abner Perry, was killed at the taking of the IslandBattery.•   


Nothing of consequence took place until the fall after I was seven years old, when my mother died, leaving four small children, viz: one brother and two sisters. There was something very singular took place respecting her sickness.  She went with my father, to visit his relations at Eastown.  They rode on horse-back.  While they were there, on Lord's day, I was at play with my brother and two little sisters, and it appeared to me that I saw my mother ride by on the same horse she rode away on, and dressed in the same clothes.  I mentioned the circumstance to my brother and sisters at the time; but she rode out of my sight immediately.  At this time she was taken sick at Easton, in which condition they brought her home; and she died a few days afterwards.  In consequence of this event, my father broke up house-keeping, [and put out his children]. Myself and sisters went to live with our uncle David Joy, the brother of my mother who, as I before said, went with my father to Cape Breton.  I lived with my uncle (who treated me very kindly),* until my fifteenth year; when I was placed with Mr. David Walker, inDighton, Mass. [, to learn the trade of tanner• and shoe-maker.•]


About this time war again broke out• between the English and French,• and it raged sorely in our part of the country, especially near the lakes.  Our people made a stand at the south end of Lake George,• where they built a fort, and another about 14 miles below, on the Hudson River, called Fort Edward.•  In 1755, a bloody battle was fought at the half-way-house, between Fort Edward and Lake George. Gen. Johnson• commanded the English forces; and under him Maj. Rodgers• commanded the Rangers.•  They had a number of sore battles with the French and Indians, and lost a great many of our best men.  In the year 1757, Gen. Mont Calm came against Fort George,• with a large army of French and Indians, and obliged the garrison to surrender; after which, contrary to his express agreement,• he let loose his Indians• upon our men, and massacred• a great many of them.

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