Legal Debt document signed by W(alter) Butler
Place Published: Tryon County, NY
Date Published: 1775
Edition: 1st Edition
Binding: No binding
QUITE SCARCE WALTER BUTLER SIGNATURE
Handwritten legal document, 6pp, 8 x 10 inches, tied with red ribbon upper left, Tryon County, New York, filed 21 May 1775 (March term in the fifteenth year of the Reign of King George the Third). Legal document relating to a debt, signed W. Butler - one of the lawyers.
Condition: Mounted on larger sheets with cut-outs so both sides visible. Toning as expected. Very good condition otherwise. The American Revolution had many families, relatives, neighbours and friends in Tryon county at bitter war with each other starting in 1775.
Walter Butler (1752-81) Loyalist who became a captain in Butler's Rangers, formed by his father, John. In May, 1775, Walter and John Butler left Tryon County for Canada in the company of Daniel Claus, Walter Butler, Hon Yost Schuyler and Joseph Brant. On July 7, they reached Fort Oswego and in August, Montreal." confirming he was a loyalist and fighting for Britain against the American "rebels". He was captured in 1777 by Continental Army troops commanded by Lt. Col. Marinus Willett, but escaped after a few months.
Walter Butler was probably the most hated Loyalist in America, amongst other things, because he commanded the Loyalist raiding party (which included Joseph Brant, a Mohawk chief) that attacked Cherry Valley on November 11, 1778 and the massacre after the battle. Butler has been blamed for the deaths of the many women and children that were killed on that occasion.
Ironically, it was Lt. Col. Willett, who, on October 30, 1781, came across Butler again while pursuing Major John Ross' forces after the Battle of Johnstown. Unfortunately for Col. John Butler, his son Walter was killed with a musket ball to his head, fired randomly from across the river. News of this came to the inhabitants around the same time Cornwallis' surrender was reported, but the Whig inhabitants seemed more pleased with the news of Butler's demise. However, it is said, the news of his death caused great rejoicing in New York's Mohawk Valley.
“So feared was the Butler name,” George Francis Gilman Stanley has said, “that the rebels of the Mohawk valley rejoiced more over the news of his death than they did at the surrender of [Charles] Cornwallis at Yorktown.”
Alexander White was the Sherriff of the County of Tryon and he too was a loyalist ending up in Canada.
Peter S. Deygert became an American patriot and a Major in the Tyron County Militia - First Regiment as well as Chairman of the German Flats committee.
C(hristopher). P. Yates, was one of the best informed an most efficient patriots in the Mohawk Valley. He fought at the Battle of Saratoga was Assistant Quartermaster General of Tryon County. "He was the only scholar among them; and was a man of strong mind, much reading, and very forcible writer. He was the competitor at the bar of Montgomery county, of the late Abram Van Vechten, from the year 1787, till the Legislature by law, prevented the clerks from practicing law in their respective counties." quoted form The Frontiersmen of New York, by Jeptha R. Simms, Albany, NY 1883
Very Good. Item #4194