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An American Family History

Sergeant Peter Bonham

 

"[L]iberty must at all hazards be supported.
We have a right to it, derived from our Maker.
But if we had not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us,
at the expense of their ease, their estates, their pleasure, and their blood."

-- John Adams, 1765

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Loudoun County is part of Northern Neck of Virginia. Settling of the Loudoun area began between 1725 and 1730 while it was owned by Lord Fairfax. Settlers came from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland. For more than two centuries, agriculture, especially growing tobacco, was the dominant way of life in Loudoun County.

New Jersey's first permanent European settlement was in 1660.

Sergeant Peter Bonham was born about 1741 in Maidenhead, Hunterdon County (now Lawrence, Mercer County), New Jersey. His father was Amariah Bonham.

During the American Revolution, Peter served as a sergeant in Captain Charles West's company known also as Reuben Briscoe's company, Third Virginia Regiment, commanded by Colonel Thomas Marshall. On March 6, 1778 his name was on the Rolls of Samuel Barrit’s return for Maryland. He was appointed Ensign on May 12, 1778. He was made sergeant on April 1, 1778 in Company 6 of Frederick County, Virginia. Peter signed the “Patriots’ Oaths of Fidelity and Support, 1778."

He married Rebecca Lewellyn (Luallen, Luellen, Lewelling) who was born in Pennsylvania about 1751. Philip Luallen was witness to Amariah Bonham's will.

Peter and Rebecca's children included:
Elisha Bonham (1772, married Catherine Dusthimer),
Jesse Bonham (1777, married Hannah Hoover),
Jacob Bonham (1779, married Nancy Chamberlane),
Llewellyn Bonham (1805, married Matilda Fry),
Christian Bonham Yarger (1812), and
Ellenor Bonham (1815).

In 1782 he appeared on the tax rolls of Loudoun County, Virginia.

After leaving Maryland, Peter moved to Sewickley, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. He was living in Allegheny County in 1803 when his father died.

He appeared on the tax list in Allegheny County in 1814.

In 1820 the household (Peter Bonnim) was in Ohio, Allegheny, Pennsylvania. The household consisted of a man and a woman over 45, two men between 16 and 25, a boy between 16 and 18, a boy between 10 and 15, and 3 girls under ten.

He appeared in the 1830 census in Ohio Township, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

He died in Allegheny County in July, 1833.

In 1777 the General Assembly of Maryland passed an act giving each soldier who had served three years in the Revolution "the continental allowances, a bounty of forty dollars, a pair of shoes, a pair of stockings, and at the expiration of his term, provided he shall not desert from the army, 50 acres of land, to be procured and laid off as aforesaid, to him or his representative." Officers were to receive four lots of 50 acres each. In 1781 another act was passed, reserving all vacant lands west of Fort Cumberland, Garrett County, Maryland for the soldiers. Amariah, Josiah, Jeriah, Lt. Malachai and Peter Bonham all appear on the list those receiving lots.

Hunterdon County was originally part of Burlington County, West Jersey. It was set off from Burlington County on March 11, 1714. It included Amwell, Hopewell, and Maidenhead Townships.

Children of Amariah Bonham
  • Christian Bonham Fox
  • Rebecca Bonham Johnson
  • Jeriah Bonham
  • Peter Bonham
  • Sarah Bonham Batey
  • Jacob Bonham
  • Lawrenceville, Mercer County, New Jersey was founded as Maidenhead in 1697, as part of Burlington County in the colony of West Jersey. In 1714, the village became a part of Hunterdon County.

    Most Americans were farmers in the 18th and early 19th centuries.

     

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    Genealogical and Personal History of the Upper Monongahela Valley, by James Morton Callahan

    The earliest known ancestor of the Jones family was the mother of Jacob Jones, who married (second) Samuel Lewellen, and removed with him from near Wilmington, Delaware, to Loudoun county, Virginia, where they lived until about 1770. The Lewellens then moved across the mountains and settled on Cheat river, establishing the old Lewellen Ferry, in Monongalia county, Virginia, now West Virginia, near the Pennsylvania line. Samuel Lewellen obtained a grant of land there in 1771, and his name is prominently mentioned in the old records among the early settlers of the county.

    Of the children of Samuel Lewellen the names of the following have been preserved: Philip, Jacob, Benjamin, Thomas, David, Asa, Mary, Samuel, Doctor, who is said to have been the eighth child. Their descendants settled in West Virginia, western Pennsylvania and Indiana and were scattered throughout the United States.