Universal York

Part of the USA Today Network

Guards at Camp Security 12: Waiting for pay

Since the states were responsible for Militia Pay Rolls during the Revolutionary War, and Camp Security was guarded by York County Militia during much of its existence, the Pennsylvania State Archives is the place to look for individual names.

Pennsylvania State Archives, RG-4, Records of the Comptroller General. Military Accounts, Militia, York County 1777-1794 contains hundreds of original discharges. Years after the end of their service at Camp Security, the soldiers were still seeking their full pay. Eventually, they were requested to show or turn in their discharge and “receive the interest and a new certificate for the full principal” to William Scott, the Lieutenant for York County Militia. I have been perusing those discharges on microfilm at the State Archives.

Since some soldiers had moved away, were ill, had sold their rights to the pay to others or authorized others to act as their agents, many have assignments accompanying the discharge or noted on the discharge themselves. Some are accompanied by formal Powers of Attorney, but most assignments are on a separate slip of paper or noted on the discharges themselves, usually signed by one witness. If the soldier served as a substitute, both are named.

The discharges themselves were handwritten, not many words on a small piece of paper, as you can see by the examples from the microfilm pictured and transcribed below. I have chosen several from December 1781 mentioning the stockade building precipitated by the new influx of British prisoners surrendered at Yorktown, Virginia. Note: Many of the Captains spelled tour as tower.

Camp Security Decm. 24th 1781
This is to certify that Wilm. Degroff hath served his tower of duty at building the stockade at this place and is hereby discharged.
Andw. Patterson, Capt.

Camp Security December 24 1781
This is to certify that the bearer John Boart has served his full tower of two months at the stockade agreeable to Col. Gibson’s orders for the Seventh Class of York County Militia and is hereby discharged by me.
John Wampler, Capt.

Capt. Security, 24 Dec. 1781
This [is] to certify that Wm. McCall of the 5th Class of York County Militia hath put up his part of the Stockade and is hereby discharged.
Jn. McMaster, Capt.
I assign over all my right title & interest to the within to James Struthers, it being for value recvd. Witness my hand this 20th day of March 1789.
William McCall
Testis: Alex. Struthers

December 27, 1781
This is to certify that James Hagan has served his tower of duty at the Stockade as substitute for Emree McCrery and is hereby discharged by me.
Andrew Patterson, Capt.

York Town Nov. the 11th 1793.CS-PSA-Good
I do hereby certify that David Good served his tower of duty at Camp Security in the month of Dec. 1781 with his team, agreeable to orders for that purpes in the 7th Class of York County Militia and was discharged (which discharge is said to be lost).
Ephm. Pennington, Late Cptn. Commdt. 7th Class

Click here for numerous previous posts on Camp Security.