Steuben County, New York
Transcribed from Revolutionary War pension file of Peter Fero by George Rogers:
Declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June 7th 1832
State of New York
On this sixth day of February 1834 personally appeared in open court before the Judge of the Court of Common Pleas of the said county now sitting Peter Fero a resident of the town of Hornby in the county and state aforesaid aged seventy five years who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the Act of Congress passed June 7 1832.
That he entered the service of the United States under the following named officers and served them as herein stated.
That he was born in the town of Rhinebeck in the county of Dutchess and state of New York on the 15th day of February 1759. That he has no record of his age except a memorandum in his bible. That he was residing about four miles from the city of Albany in the county of Albany when his brother Henry Fero was drafted as a private in Captain Sansiegs company in Philip Schuylers[i] regiment. That this was in month of April and in the year 1781 as the deponent thinks but is not sure his memory being frail of having nearly lost the same. That his brother procured this deponent to go as his substitute and that as such he went. That he joined said company in the city of Albany and a few days after which he with said company marched to Saratoga. That they there met Captain Henry Astroms company and Captain Sansiegs company was stationed there under the command of Philip Schuyler. That they stayed at Saratoga four months. That during that time nothing transpired to them. That after being there four months they received news that the tories and Indians were moving toward German Flatts and they under the command of Philip Schuyler marched toward Fort Dayton to join Colonel Willet who was there stationed and assist him in opposing the tories and Indians. That before they arrived at Fort Dayton they met Colonel Willet on his way to Albany with tories and Indians he had made prisoners[ii]. That they went on to Fort Dayton and then continued under the command of Colonel Willet for two months. Colonel Willet did not go himself to Albany with the prisoners but sent a guard. General Gansevoort[iii] was at Fort Dayton when this deponent arrived there. That at the end of the two months Captain Astrom and Captain Sanseigs companies went under the command of Colonel Schuyler to Schenectady and were there billeted out for three weeks. That said companies under Colonel Schuyler from there marched to the Beaver Dams where they took fifty tories and some families and brought them to Albany. That they were engaged about two weeks in that expedition. That said companies were discharged after they arrived at Albany and went to their respective homes. That this deponent was during all the said time with the said Sansiegs company. That he received no certificate. That all his service amounted to seven and a half months. That he has no documentary evidence or knows of no person who can testify to his service. That this deponents memory is frail and that minute particulars he does not recollect. That after his discharge he returned to his residence in Albany county and there resided for twenty years. From there he moved to Charleston, Montgomery County and there resided until he moved to Hornby in Steuben County aforesaid and has there resided for thirteen years. That Andrew B. Dickinson and Samuel Oldfield are his neighbors and can testify to his character for ----- and their belief of his service as a soldier of the revolution.
He hereby relinquishes every claim whatever to a pension or annuity except the present and declares his name is not on the pension rolls of the agency of any state.[iv]
Peter + Fero
Sworn and subscribed
6th day of February 1834
William H. Bull, Clerk
of Steuben Com. Pleas
[i] Iím not sure to whom Peter Fero was referring. General Philip Schuyler had been discredited for his loss of Fort Ticonderoga in 1777 and was court-martialed but acquitted. He resigned his commission on 19 April 1779. Before his vindication by the court-martial he was chosen, in October 1778, by the New York legislature a representative in congress until 1781.
[ii] A small Continental scouting party encountered a force of 700 Tories and British regulars under the command of Major John Ross and Captain Walter Butler southeast of Fort Plain on 24 October 1781.
The following day Colonel Marinus Willett's force of Continentals and Levies caught up with the raiding party, which resulted in the Battle of Johnstown. The fight seesawed through the streets of Johnstown; the Loyalists retreated, and were pursued by the Patriots. On 30 October the two collided at a ford of West Canada Creek. During the skirmish, Walter Butler was shot through the head. The news of Butler's death was more momentous to the locals than the surrender at Yorktown.
[iii] Peter Gansevoort was born in Albany, New York, 17 July 1749; died there, 2 July 1812. He was appointed major of the 2d New York regiment, 19 July 1775, and in August joined the army that invaded Canada under Montgomery. He was made lieutenant colonel, 19 March 1776, colonel of the 3d regiment, 21 November 1776, and appointed to the command of Fort George. In April 1777, he had charge of Fort Schuyler, previously called Fort Stanwix, and gallantly defended it against the British and Indians under St. Leger, whose co-operation with Burgoyne he prevented. The siege lasted twenty days, and for his vigorous service he received a vote of thanks from congress. In the spring of 1779 he was ordered to join Sullivan in his western expedition. He distinguished himself at the head of a body of picked men by surprising the lower Mohawk castle, and captured all the Indian inhabitants by the dexterity of his movements. He was appointed brigadier-general in 1781 by the legislature of New York.