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Sherman Babcock, 1762 - 1851

Sherman Babcock was born on 19 Oct 1762 in South Kingstown, Washington County, Rhode Island. Nothing has been uncovered as to his parentage or siblings. Most of what we know about him and his family comes from certain vital, land, and census records, and information provided in an application for a Revolutionary War pension.

Sherman served during the Revolutionary War as a private in the militia of several states. He enlisted three times, and was drafted twice, for a total of about two years service. In Mar 1777, at the age of 15, Sherman enlisted in the Connecticut Militia to serve as a substitute for three months. He served under Captain Joseph Fish in the 4th Regiment and was stationed in Groten and Stonington Point, CT. On 25 Jun 1777 Sherman again enlisted in the Connecticut Militia to serve for nine months. He served under Captain Josiah Baldwin in Colonel John Ely's regiment, and was stationed in New London, Connecticut.

His company was marched to White Plains, NY, in preparation for a crossing to Long Island, which never happened, though Colonel Ely was captured by the British. Sherman returned to Stonington Point, and on 14 May 1778 Sherman enlisted for a third term of one year. He served under Captain Joshua Babcock in Colonel John Topham's regiment, and was stationed in Tiviston, Rhode Island. After mustering out, he settled in Pownall, Vermont. While there he was drafted for two consecutive tours of two months each, serving to guard prisoners and maintain the border. He served under Captain Briggs in Colonel Robertson's regiment. He was likely discharged about Apr 1779.

By 1789 he was settled in Westfield (later called Fort Ann), Washington County, New York (near Lake Champlain). He married Delecta Rich, daughter of James Rich. Sherman became the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Westfield on 12 Feb 1790. In 1790 or 1791, Sherman and Delecta had the first of their eleven children, son Thomas. Another son, Young (also called Youngs), was born in 1792. He served with the First Baptist Church until 1792. The Babcock family then moved to Panton, Addison County, Vermont. Son Barnes (also called Barnabus) was born there on 24 Feb 1794. On 4 July 1794, Sherman helped found the Panton Baptist Church. The family moved back to Westfield sometime after this. Daughter Amanda was born there in 1795, and son Hiram (also called Henry) was born in 1798.

On 19 Sep 1799, Sherman was again called to become the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Westfield. He was ordained by a council of churches from Hartford, Queensbury, Sharon, Kingsbury, Granville, and Middletown, Vermont. He served for six years, and permanently severed his connection to the Church on 5 Jun 1805. Sons Lee (also called Stephen) and James R (possibly named after his grandfather) were born in Westfield in 1801 and 1803, respectively.

The family again returned to Panton before the birth of their eighth child, daughter Salome, in 1806. Sherman bought 15 acres of land in Ferrisburg from Ferris Holcomb, which was recorded on 7 Apr 1806. Son Rowland was born 5 Mar 1809, followed by daughter Elesta (also called Lusty or Linty) in 1812, and son Pardon A 28 Aug 1814. On 9 Oct 1809, Young married Beulah (or Bela) Bishop, oldest daughter of Jesse Bishop, in Panton. Thomas married Clarissa Ferris, daughter of James Ferris, on 20 Feb 1810 in Panton. Barnes was married in 1814 to Asenath Grover, likely in Fort Ann. Thomas served as a pilot in the U.S. Naval Squadron on Lake Champlain from 27 Apr 1814 to 28 Nov 1814 (during the War of 1812). Barnes also served during the war. Sherman sold his land in Panton on 22 Sep 1814, possibly to escape the fighting. Sometime between 1815 and 1818 he and his family started a migration west that would ultimately end in Oregon.

By 1818, Sherman and family were settled in Posey Township, Harrison County, Indiana. More of Sherman's children were married here over then next twenty years. Stephen married Sally Washburn on 2 May 1818 in Clark County, Indiana. Amanda married Jonathan Elsworth 14 days later (on 16 May 1818) in the same county. James married Rachel Mulkins, daughter of Henry Mulkins and Mary Duncan, on 25 Dec 1822 in Posey. Rowland married Nancy Pyburn, daughter of Richard Pyburn and Mary A Hardin, on 22 Oct 1828 in Posey. Elesta married Williard Mulkins (brother of Rachel) on 18 May 1834 in Posey. Pardon married Elizabeth Pyburn (sister of Nancy) on 29 Oct 1835 in Posey. Hiram married Lydia about 1820. No information is known of any marriage of Salome.

In Jun 1832, Congress passed the Pension Law, which provided pensions for Revolutionary War Veterans. Sherman filed for his pension on 2 Oct 1832 in open court in Harrison County. He was placed on the pension rolls for Indiana (#22333) on 26 Oct 1833 at a semi-annual rate of $40.00, retroactive to 4 Mar 1831.

In 1842 Sherman and Delecta moved to Pleasant Prairie, Racine County (now Kenosha County), Wisconsin with their sons Rowland and Pardon. Sherman and Delecta were received into the congregation of the First Baptist Church in Kenosha on 18 Sep 1844. In Feb 1847 Sherman and Delecta moved to Benton Township, Knox County, Missouri to be near to their Pardon and his family. It also appears that Rowland moved there briefly as well, as his son Richard was born in Knox County in 1847. Sherman continued his Baptist ministry in Missouri. Records show that he married at least four couples in Knox County between Apr and Nov 1848.

Sherman died on 18 Jan 1851 in Winchester, Clay Township, Clark Co, Missouri. 1850 Census records (taken in June 1850) do not mention Delecta; it may be presumed that she died between Feb 1847 and June 1850, probably in Missouri. No burial place has been identified for Sherman or Delecta.


Revolutionary War Pension affidavit, 2 Oct 1832.

Military Muster Rolls, Jun 7777 through Feb 1779.

Military Pension Rolls, Mar 1832 through Jan 1851.

Washington Union Baptist Association Minutes, 1864.

Church Minutes of First Baptist Church, Kenosha, WI, 1844-1847.

United States Census Records, 1790-1850.

Research by Alice Babcock Holmes, 1993.

Research by Marilyn Light.

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