Friday, January 17, 2014

Jonathan Scott (1784 - 1870) A Reckend of Ages

On this page is a handwritten note listing the names and ages of the family of Jonathan Scott and his wife Sarah Merritt Scott. In his own handwriting Jonathan Scott reports his birth date  and those of his wife and children in a document that is part of the Revolutionary War  Pension Record  of his mother-in-law, Anna Ayers Merritt, who was the  mother of  Sarah Merritt, Jonathan's wife. The Revolutionary War Pension Record for the widow of Thomas Merritt  contains family records of Thomas and Anna Merritt's children and their families.

Jonathan Scott and Sarah (Sally) Merritt came from Bennington, Vermont.  They first lived in Warsaw, New York before moving to Troy, Pennsylvania.  When they arrived in Troy in 1811 it is said that there were only three houses in the town.

Sarah Merritt Scott was born January 1, 1786.  She attested to her date of birth in the Revolutionary War papers filed on behalf of her mother, Anna Ayers Merritt, to claim the pension due her for the service of her husband, Thomas Merritt, in the Revolutionary War.

A Reckend of Ages
Jonathon Scott Was Born Sept the 24 1784
Sarah Scott  Was January the 1 1786
Thomas M Scott  Was Born April the 15   1807
Zina L. Scott  Was Born   Auggust 3 1809
Caroline Scott  Was Born   January  the 28 1812
Sarah Ann Scott  Was Born  July the 16  1814
Emely Scott  Was Born  Auggust  the 24 1816
Dan Scott  Was Born  Febury 14 1818  and died the 15 1818
George Scott Was Born  June 1 1823
Martha M Scott Was Born  November 20 1825... Her name has been incorrectly reported to be Nathan by others who have looked at this record.  She married Leonard Van Horn and provided a home for her sister Emily for over 30 years. 

This document provides a definitive birth date of September 24, 1784 for Jonathan Scott. Most historians have used the date December 24, 1784.  It is probable that Orrin Peer Allen in recording the family of Matthew and Sarah Scott in his book "Descendants of William Scott of Hatfield, Mass. 1668-1906 and of John Scott of Springfield, Mass., 1659-1906"  recorded a baptism date  for Jonathan. 

That said, I want to clear up a  long standing myth regarding Jonathan Scott.  Family historians have long thought that he was the son of Zerah Scott.   But his name does not appear in the list of children born to Zerah and Sybil Scott as is  recorded in The Revolutionary War  pension application records of Zerah.   The records contain an account of Zerah's children as recorded in the family Bible.  Zerah's children were:

Elijah Scott, born April , 1787
Sarah, born  Mar 3 1790
Claria, born  Nov. 23, 1793
Vera  born,  Sept. 20, 1798  d.  Jan. 5, 1813
Betsy Scott,  born  April 5, 1802
Joseph Spenser Scott,  born  June 5, 1807

Since Zerah and Syble were married August. 3, 1786 in Bennington, Vermont, our Jonathan Scott, born September 24, 1784,  could  NOT  have been his son.  Zerah, born October 8, 1765 in Bennington, Vermont  was his oldest brother. There was an  age span of about twenty years  between these brothers. They were the sons of Matthew and Sarah ScottI believe that Zerah may have taken in his  younger brother to be reared by him.   Jonathan very well may have been raised as the oldest child in Zerah's family and he  may have looked to his older brother as his father.  Therefore the confusion in the reported family history.

Jonathan Scott's son, Hosea, was my great great grandfather.  He married Sarah Angeline Chauncey.  Their daughter Helen married Charles Estep, whose daughter Zilpha was my grandmother. 

It is estimated that Jonathan and Sarah died before 1860 as they appear on the 1850 census, but not on the 1860 census. Family histories note that Jonathan is buried in the old  cemetery at Troy. I have not located the grave or a transcription of gravestones in that cemetery.  If anyone has knowledge of such, please contact me.


1. Written family history passed down to me from my grandmother Zilpha Estep Hughes.

2. Descendants of William Scott of Hatfield, Massachusetts. 1668 - 1906 and of John Scott of Springfield, Mass. 1659 – 1906 by Orrin Peer Allen, Palmer, Mass. 1906.

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