In 2014 the Connecticut Society of Genealogists selected my entry as the winner of its “Tell Your Family Story” essay contest. The story I submitted was “Noah Agard of Litchfield, Connecticut; Revolutionary War Soldier. This blog is a summary of that essay.
Noah’s Revolutionary War Pension submission stated his condition:
“I am by occupation a farmer, but am not able to labor any of consequence. I am lame in both of my legs and have been ever since I left the army. I am likewise troubled with a weakness of the stomach and a raising of blood…”
Noah Agard was born on 3 May 1756 in Litchfield, Connecticut, the fifth and last child of John (b: 1712) and Mary (Hosford) (b: 1715) Agard.
When Noah Agard was twenty he enlisted in the Continental Army to fight for his homeland. Initially he served under the leadership of Captain Eliazer Curtis and Captain Martin in the regiment of Colonel Van Schaick of New York. Dutifully Private Noah Agard marched with his company through the wilderness of Maine to Quebec where the army attacked the British forces. The soldiers nearly starved before reaching Canada where they suffered a repulse of their advance by the British. Noah’s regiment was the rear guard of the army all the way in the retreat. By the time the regiment reached Lake George, the men, having few supplies, were suffering from smallpox and other illnesses.
Upon discharge Noah was placed on the roll of Minutemen. Minutemen were selected by their commanding officers, because of their youth, enthusiasm and reliability, to be at the ready when needed. If Noah was indeed picked for this elite force, his injuries at the time must not have been critical. At any rate, he now had time to farm his land and to meet his future wife, Lucina Jones (b: abt 1748), the daughter of Lieutenant Eaton and Elizabeth (Catlin) Jones.[i] Marriage was proposed, but paper money had depreciated in value to the point that one month’s soldier’s wages equaled one silver dollar. Noah had little to offer for Lucina’s hand in marriage, but he did have two month’s wages saved in which to pay the minister who married them on 30 September 1779.
The Revolutionary Claims Act was passed on 18 March 1818. Noah began the application process for his Revolutionary War pension on 12 May 1818 and at that time was granted a small pension. In 1820 his claim was finally complete and he received his full pension.
“… My family consists of five in number: to wit: myself, my wife, Lucina aged 62 years, who is of a weakly constitution and able to do but very little towards her own support. My daughter, Lucina, whose age is 32 years, whose health is pretty good, who would not reside with me were it not for the purpose of taking care of her sister, Maria, whose age is 26 years, who has been sick for more than two years past and is wholly unable to contribute to her own support and my daughter Lorain who is 17 years old in pretty good health and able to contribute considerably toward her own support.” - Noah Agard’s Revolutionary War Pension Application, 1820.[ii]
Noah Agard died on 26 July 1840. His wife Lucina (Jones) Agard died in 1841. They are buried in the Agard Cemetery (aka North Settlement Cemetery), Catherine, New York.
[i] Frederick Browning Agard, Agards in America, New Orleans, Polyanthos, 1976, 19. Also, Agard Family Bible, Family Record pages, in possession of Mary Nunn Maki.
[ii] “Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files, 1800-1900,” Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com] entry for Noah Agard, Original data: Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty-Land Warrant Application Files (NARA M804, 2,670 rolls). Records of the Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group 15, National Archives, Washington, D.C.