Peter Getman: Scouts on Snowshoes
Written and Contributed by James F. Morrison
Peter enlisted as a private in April of 1779 while living at Stone Arabia in Capt. Henry Miller's Company (3rd Comp.) in Colonel Jacob Klock's Regiment of Tryon County militia (Second Regiment). Peter was marched to the Royal Grant and he was stationed there for a few weeks. During the winter Peter went on a scout with William Feeter on snowshoes for a few days.
In April 1780, Peter enlisted in Captain John Casselman's Company of Rangers attached to Colonel Jacob Klock's Regiment. Peter was stationed at Fort Paris under Captain Casselman. On October 19th, Colonel Sir John Johnson with about 500 Indians and Johnson's Greens were in the Stone Arabia settlement burning and killing. General Robert Van Rensselaer on being informed of this invasion ordered Colonel John Brown who was in command at Fort Paris to take what men that could be spared from that garrison and find the enemy.
Peter, under Captain Casselman and Colonel Brown marched out of Fort Paris in search of the enemy. Colonel Brown and his men found the enemy near the farm of Severinus Dygert and a battle soon raged. After about ten minutes of fighting Brown's men were overwhelmed and they retreated. Many militiamen crossed the Mohawk River and joined Van Rensselaer's growing army and others like Peter retreated back to Fort Paris. Colonel Brown with about forty-five men from his command were killed. Peter was discharged January 1, 1781.
In the spring of 1781, Peter again enlisted in Captain Miller's Company. On October 24th, Major John Ross and Captain Walter Butler with about 607 men from the 34th Regiment, Butler's Rangers, Hessians and Indians were in the Mohawk Valley burning and killing.
Colonel Marinus Willett at Fort Rensselaer (Fort Plain) on learning of this incursion sent messengers to Fort Clyde, Paris and Plank for additional troops while gathered what troops that could be spared from Fort Rensselaer and went in search of the enemy.
Peter, under Captain Miller joined Colonel Willett on October 25th, at Caughnawaga and from there they marched to Johnstown. On reaching Fort Johnstown, Colonel Willet was informed that the enemy had encamped near Johnson's Hall. Colonel Willett with his men marched to where the enemy were encamped. On arriving on the field a battle soon enraged. The battle lasted until darkness fell on the battlefield and with the British retreating.
Peter enlisted in April of 1782 in Captain Abner French's Company in Colonel Marinus Willett's Regiment of New York State Levies for nine months. Peter was stationed at a blockhouse in Palatine and soon after he was marched on a scout to Fort House. He went from there to Fort Herkimer to Fort Schuyler (Fort Stanwix) and from there to Oneida Lake and back. He was discharged January 1, 1783.
Peter was born in Ephratah on January 5, 1764
to Christian and Anna Eve (Timmerman) Getman. He died May 22,
1845. Peter married on March 10, 1785 to Elizabeth Rechtor (Richter) by
a Reverend Rees of the Lutheran Stone Arabia Church at Rev. Rees'
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