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Revolutionary War Pension Applications


            In Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files, Vol. III: N-Z, abstracted by Virgil D. White (National Historical Publishing Co., Waynesboro, TN, 1992, p. 2619) only two Peter Pattersons are listed:


•Patterson, Peter, NJ Line, R8007, appl 7 Aug 1833 Monmouth Co. NJ, sol was b. 1 Mar 1757, sol lived at Shrewbury now called Hawly in Monmouth Co NJ at enl

(Per Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary War Pensions, p. 190, this application was rejected “for futher proof—claim withdrawn May 19, 1838 by J.T. Randolph”; Peter Patterson resided Freehold, Monmouth Co., NJ, and was deceased by 1838.)

•Patterson, Peter, NJ Line, R8008, appl 10 Sep 1834 Fayette Co. PA aged 80 on 5 Sept 1834 [b. 1754], enl in Monmouth Co. NJ

(Per Rejected or Suspended Applications for Revolutionary War Pensions, p. 211,

this application was rejected; “name not on the rolls of service; if he served every alternate month in the New Jersey Militia, and cannot, from old age, specifcy earch tour, the can only be allowed at the lowest rate provided for by the act, viz: six months.”)




            Both of these pensions were rejected. (That’s what the “R” in front of the number means.) No other Peter Pattersons, to our knowledge, ever applied for Revolutionary War pension benefits. Neither of these two Peter Pattersons is our Peter—both of the above Peters enlisted in New Jersey, not Lancaster Co., PA, as did our Peter. The second Peter above did apply from Fayette Co, PA, where our Peter was also living, but the Peter above was living in the poor house in Uniontown, and the Peter above was born 1754. Franklin Ellis, in History of Fayette County, p. 617, writes that Peter “died at the age of more than ninety” on his land in Jefferson (formerly Washington) Township, Fayette County”—not in the poorhouse. And, besides, the Peter Patterson applying for pension benefits in Fayette Co. in 1834 could not be “our” Peter, as “our” Peter died in 1821 (See “Wills”.)  We believe that Patterson researchers (and Miss Espy) may have found a death date of the New Jersey Peter Patterson who filed for benefits from Fayette Co. in 1834 and then assumed that this was the death date for “our” Peter.  This could explain the “d. 1840” death date incorrectly given for “our” Peter in so many of the D.A.R. lineages.






            All of the following information regarding Paterson/Patterson marriages and baptisms comes from the Register of Marriages and Baptisms performed by  Rev. John Cuthbertson, Covenanter Minister 1751-1791 transcribed by S. Helen Fields and originally published 1934 in Washington D.C.

It should be noted that “Church Records: Adams, Berks & Lancaster Counties, PA 1729-1881” found on-line at, which claims to include Cuthbertson’s records, contains some, but not all, of his records.  Also, Church Records of the 18th Century, Vol. 3, by F. Edward Wright, claims to contain Cuthbertson’s records, but they are not complete in this book, either. Finally, we obtained a copy of Helen S. Field’s COMPLETE transcription of Rev. Cuthbertson’s journal, and it is this book (reprinted in 2001 by Heritage Books) from which the following records come.


            Rev. Cuthbertson served a large area in Lancaster County and beyond. He even made a trip across the mountains in 1779, to the area known as “Forks of the Yough” (now parts of Westmoreland and Washington and Allegheny Counties).    He was an itinerant minister, and there were several “meeting houses” in Dauphin/Lancaster (as well in other counties susch as Cumberland and York) where he performed marriages and baptisms.  The following index of page numbers pertaining to Patterson/Paterson births and marriages will guide you to the “society” or “meeting house” in which the ceremony was performed:

            Adams Co.                                                      Marsh Creek              pp. 70-82

            Bedford Co.                                                    Juniata River                  p. 84

            Cumberland Co.                                              Big Spring                    pp. 89-91

            Cumberland Co.                                              Junken Tent                 pp. 94-99

            Cumberland Co.                                              Leteart Spring                p. 99

            Cumberland Co.                                              Middle Spring                p. 99

            Lancaster Co. (area later Dauphin Co.)            Paxton [Paxtang]          pp. 105-115

            Lancaster Co.                                                  Middle Octoraro*        pp. 134-184

            Lancaster Co.                                                  Muddy Run                  pp. 184-187

            Lancaster Co.                                                  Pequea                         pp. 189-196

            York Co.                                                         Lower Chanceford       pp. 208-238

            Westmoreland/Allegheny/Washington Co.       “Forks of the Yough”     pp.     83-84       


*Middle Octoraro was Rev. Cuthbertson’s “home base”; this is where he lived.




Marriages (Peter as groom)


Peter “Peters” [PATERSON]* married Agnes McCormick 1 Apr 1755.  The entry in the Paxton (Paxtang) section of Rev. Cuthbertson’s journal reads: “1755 Apr. 1 – Rode 16 miles Ch. Kilgores (Big Spring) after marrying Peter Peters and Agnes McCormick rs. for S—.” (p. 106) 

*We have no doubt that the above surname should be “Paterson.”  Rev. Cuthbertson often abbreviated names. We believe this to be Peter Paterson  of Paxtang for these reasons:

-In Verkus’ Compendium of American Genealogy, Vol. 6, p. 143, we read of a Peter Patterson who abt. 1756 m. Agnes McCormick (1723-1807). Note: the birth date of “1723” given by Verkus should be “1733” per Agnes’ headstone information. 

-Peter Patterson, one of the “four Patterson brothers,” was said to have settled in Washington Twp., Fayette Co.  The closest church to this location was Rehoboth (Presbyterian), and in this cemetery we find a grave of Agnes Patterson who d. in 1807, age 74 [b. 1733]. We have a photo of this grave. (See Chapter III) Next to this grave is one for an Agnes Patterson, “daughter of Peter and Agnes” who d. 1789 at the age of 29 years. We also have a photo of this grave.

-As further evidence that “Peters” should be Patterson: the following entry (below), for Han. “Peterson” should definitely be “Patterson”; see “Wills” section where she is identified in the will of her father, a Peter Patterson, as being the wife of James Mitchell.


All Patterson/Paterson marriages recorded in Rev. Cuthbertson’s journal are:


                        Date                     Name                         Married to:                 Page

            1. June 7, 1756              Paterson, James            Florence Dale              141

            2. Oct. 31, 1758            Paterson, James            Mary McCord             145

            3. Nov. 22, 1773           Paterson, Janet              John Paterson              187

            4. Feb. 26/28, 1753       Paterson, Jean               George Buch(anan)      208-209

            5. Apr. 17, 1759            Paterson, John               Sarah McCord            146

            6. Nov. 22, 1773           Paterson, John               Janet Paterson              187

            7. Jan. 2, 1754               Paterson, Margaret       William Reynolds          185

            8. Sept. 20, 1757           Paterson, Margaret        Thomas Niely               142

            9. Feb. 27, 1770            Paterson (?),Margaret    Sam Paterson               165

            10. Jan. 17, 1758           Paterson, Mary              John McKnaught          143

            11. Mar. 29, 1768          Paterson, Ma(ry?)         Elijah Stewart               161

            12. Jan. 12, 1773            Paterson, Mary              John Thomson             168

            13. Apr. 10, 1764           Paterson, R.                   Mary Stewart              110

            14. Feb 27, 1770            Paterson, Sam                Margaret (Paterson?)  165

            15. July 28, 1755            Paterson, William            Mary McCormic(k)    107

            16. Aug. 24, 1773           Paterson, Wm.                Jean Murray                 81

            17. May 4, 1762             Patterson, John               Agnes Scott                 152

            18. Aug 27, 1779            Pattison, Agnes               James Ridgway            228

            19. Mar. 17, 1772           Pattison, Elizabeth            Joseph Tait                 167

            20. Apr. 1, 1755             Peters, Peter                   Agnes McCormick      106

            21. Dec. 14, 1769           Peterson, Han.                James Mitchell             164





Baptisms (Peter as father)


•Agnes Paterson, dau. of Peter Paterson, baptized Oct. 2, 1751 (Muddy Run Society)

•Agnes Paterson, dau. of Peter Paterson, baptized Sept. 5, 1762 (Muddy Run Society)

•James Paterson, son of Peter Paterson, baptized 22 Aug., 1756 (Pequea Society)

•John Paterson, son of Peter Paterson, baptized June 8, 1760 (Paxtang Society)

•Mary Paterson, dau. of Peter Paterson, baptized Apr. 7, 1765 (Paxtang Society)

•Thomas Paterson, son of Peter Paterson, baptized Oct 6, 1754 (Middle Octoraro Society)

•Thomas Paterson, son of Peter Paterson, baptized June 11, 1758 (Middle Octoraro)


All Patterson/Paterson baptisms recorded in Rev. Cuthbertson’s journal are:


   Date                                           Name                                Parent                                   Page

Oct. 2, 1751                              Paterson, Agnes            Peter Paterson                         184

Aug. 22, 1756                            Paterson, Agnes              Wm. Paterson                            191

Sept. 5, 1762                             Paterson, Agnes            Peter Paterson                        186

Oct. 31, 1762                            Paterson, Alex.                Thomas Paterson                        153

Feb. 1, 1770                              Paterson, Eleanor             William Paterson                        113

Mar. 9, 1766                              Paterson, Elizabeth           W. Paterson                              112

Oct. 14, 1770                             Paterson, Eliz.                  Thomas Pa. [sic]                        165

Feb. 21, 1775                             Paterson, Eliz.                  James Paterson                          170-71

Mar. 7, 1764                              Paterson, Florence            James Paterson                          155

Dec. 17, 1751                             Paterson, James               Jo. Paterson (John? Joseph?)      184

May 18, 1755                             Paterson, James               Thomas Paterson                        139-40

Nov. 2, 1755                              Paterson, James C.           James Paterson                          140

Aug. 22, 1756                            Paterson, James             Peter Paterson                         191

Mar. 1, 1758                               Paterson, James               William Paterson                        143

Oct. 26, 1766                              Paterson, James               Robert Paterson                         159

Sept. 13, 1767                             Paterson, James?             James Paterson?                         160

Apr. 17, 1768                              Paterson, James              Wm. Paterson                                91

July 2, 1777                                 Paterson, James               Jas. Paterson                               173

Dec. 17, 1751                              Paterson, Janet                Jo (John? Joseph?)                      184

Sept. 8, 1751                               Paterson, Jean                 Wm. Paterson                             134

Nov. 26, 1752                             Paterson, Jean                  Wm. Paterson                            137

Feb (18), 1753                            Paterson, Jean                  Thomas Paterson                        137-38

Nov. 12, 1769                             Paterson, Jean                   R. Paterson                               164

Feb. 20, 1770                             Paterson, Jean                    James Paterson, Jr.                   164

Apr. 22, 1753                             Paterson, John                    Wm. Paterson                             99

Dec. 17, 1751                             Paterson, John                    Thomas Paterson                      184

June 5, 1757                                Paterson, John                    James Paterson                        142

June 8, 1760                              Paterson, John                  Peter Paterson                       109

Mar. 20, 1763                             Paterson, John                     James Paterson                       153-54

Feb. 21, 1775                             Paterson, John                     Robert Paterson                       170

Feb. 20, 1764                             Paterson, Margaret              T. Paterson                              155

June 28, 1761                             Paterson, Margaret               James (Paters.)                        151


Feb. 18, 1766                             Paterson, Margaret            James Paterson                           158

June 5, 1757                               Paterson, Mary                  Thomas Paterson                        142

Feb. 27, 1765                             Paterson, Mary                  James Paterson                           157

Apr. 7, 1765                               Paterson, Mary               Peter Paterson                          111

Apr. 9, 1780                               Paterson, Mary                  Robert Paterson                          177

Oct. 12, 1767                             Paterson, Robert                James Paterson                            160

May 21, 1769                             Paterson, Robert                James Paterson                            163-64

Feb. 2, 1768                               Paterson, Samuel               Robert Paterson                           161

Apr. 29, 1759                             Paterson, Sarah                 James Paterson                             146

Nov. 13, 1760                            Paterson, Sarah                 James Paterson                             212

Oct. 21, 1764                             Paterson, Sarah                 T. Paterson                                     76

Apr. 23, 1765                             Paterson, Sarah                 Robert Paterson                            157

Oct. 26, 1760                             Paterson, Susanna             Thomas Paterson                           149

Sept. 26, 1779                            Paterson, Susanna             James Paterson                               84

Oct. 6, 1754                               Paterson, Thomas           Peter Paterson                            139

Feb. 5, 1756                               Paterson, Thomas              Jo (John? Joseph?) (adopted)        185

June 11, 1758                            Paterson, Thomas           Peter Paterson                            144

Oct. 8, 1758                               Paterson, Thomas              Thomas Paterson                          145

Sept. 27, 1772                            Paterson, Thomas              William Paterson                             98

Mar. 10/11, 1783                        Paterson, Thomas              R(obert) Pat.                                180

Dec. 17, 1751                             Paterson, William               Thomas Paterson                          184

Jan. 7, 1762                                Paterson, William               Wm. Paterson                               152

Sept. 13, 1767                            Paterson, Wm.                    James Paterson                            160

Apr. 28, 1771                             Paterson, William                Robert Paterson                           166

Apr. 4, 1773                               Patterson, Ann                    Sam. Patterson                             168

May 21, 1778                             Patterson, Elijah                  Robert Patterson                           225

Apr. 1, 1772                               Patterson, Hanna(h)             James Patterson                           167

Mar. 2, 1773                              Patterson, Jean                     T. Patt.                                          81

Mar. 28, 1773                            Patterson, Robert                 Robert Patterson                          168

May 12, 1782                            Patterson, Samuel                 James Patterson                           179

May 21, 1778                            Patterson, Thomas                Robert Patterson                          225

May 23, 1773                            Pattison, Agnes                     Hew Pattison                               169

Oct. 4, 1771                              Pattison, Arthur                     Thomas Pattison                            80

Mar. 23, 1758                           Pattison, Rob.                       William Pattison                             99

Dec. 31, 1771                           Pattison, Samuel                     Hew Pattison                             194

Mar. 20/21, 1775                      Pattison, Sarah                       Hugh Pattison                                  195                                   



As can be seen from the above records, prior to the 1755 marriage of “our” Peter and Agnes McCormick, on Oct 2, 1751, an Agnes Patterson was baptized by Rev. Cuthbertson (in Middle Octoraro), and Peter Paterson was listed as the father.  Also, on Oct 6, 1754, Thomas Paterson was baptized by Rev. Cuthbertson (also in Middle Octoraro), and                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              59

Peter was listed as the father.  Since these two baptisms pre-date the marriage of “our” Peter and Agnes in 1755, there are three possibilities:

 (1) The Peter listed as father on the 1751 and 1754 baptism records is not “our” Peter.

We lean towards this possibility over the other two.  Perhaps this is the Peter of Drumore who lists in his will (proved 1786) an unnamed daughter who married “Robert Kirkpatrick”.  We suggest this, because Kirkpatrick researchers say that  “John Robert Kirkpatrik was b. 3 July 1743 in Co. Antrim, Ireland. Family tradition has John Robert [Kirkpatrick] and three brothers arriving in America in 1760 on the same ship.  According to this tradition, Joseph went by ship to Savannah, GA and then to NC; Henry went to rural NY; Andrew to NJ; and John Robert to the Peter Patterson farm in Lancaster, PA.” And an tree prepared by Andrea Fountain ( shows a Peter Patterson who married an Ann Montgomery and had dau. Agnes Patterson b. 1747 [So this would NOT be the Agnes who is “our” Peter’s daughter! “Our” Peter’s daughter, Agnes, was b. 1762 and d. unmarried. See Chapter on Peter’s family]. This other Agnes Patterson, dau. of perhaps another Peter, married John Robert Kirkpatrick (he b. 3 July 1743 in Co. Antrim.) They married in 1774 in Lancaster, PA. This tree shows that this Agnes d. 1 Aug 1828 in OH, and is buried in Martinsburg, OH. (“Our” Peter’s daughter, Agnes,  d. 1789 and is buried in Rehoboth, Fayette Co., PA.) The other Agnes had son Peter Kirkpatrick b. 15 Sept 1782 in Lancaster Co. And Peter Kirkpatrick m. Flora* Moore Patterson (b. 1784 in PA) 1809 in Redstone, Fayette Co., PA. The same info, re. a Peter Patterson marrying an Ann Montgomery and having a daughter named Agnes, posted by Jessica Frost (, with the additional information in this tree that this Peter was b. “abt. 1720”. If the information from these internet sources is true (and there are some pretty specific dates and locations from Andrea Fountain), this would do much to explain the confusion of researchers over the years:  Two Peters, perhaps close to the same age, both with a daughter named Agnes—it certainly would be easy to leap to conclusions and mix-up the identifies of the two Peters.  And this would explain the DAR lineage records which incorrectly identify “our” Peter’s wife as Ann Montgomery. At any rate, regarding these two baptisms of children of a Peter Patterson which pre-date the marriage of “our” Peter and Agnes McCormick, we heavily favor the explanation that these are children of a DIFFERENT Peter—perhaps a cousin or an uncle--but that is yet to be proved. (See “Mix-Ups” chapter.)

(2) Our Peter married first an unknown woman prior to marrying Agnes McCormick, and with this unknown first wife had children named Agnes and Thomas who both died while young.  Peter then married Agnes McCormick and gave the same names to  their first daughter Agnes and their first son Thomas.  We think (2) is only a slight possiblity.


*Note the recurrence of the name “Flora” in the descendants of James, “our” Peter’s brother.  (See James’ chapter.) James married Florence “Flora” Dale.  This is perhaps another clue pointing to the closeness of several Pattrson families whose children intermarried. Agnes, the dau. of another Peter Patterson, married John Robert Kirkpatrick and had son Peter Kirkpatrick; Peter Kirkpatrick married Flora Patterson (who was perhaps a descendant of James and Florence (Dale) Patterson, “our” Peter’s brother and sister-in-law).  Note also that Peter and Flora (Patterson) Kirkpatrick are said to have married in Fayette Co., PA, where “our” Peter and his brother James settled.


(3) Our Peter had two children with Agnes McCormick before they were officially wed.

These children died.  Peter then officially married Agnes McCormick and named their first daughter (after their wedding) Agnes and their first son (after their wedding) Thomas. We don’t give this possibility much credence.


Additional Marriage Records


            Rev. John Cuthbertson served the Paxtang and surrounding areas from 1751-1791.   Covenanter ministers who came after Cuthbertson to help him serve the area were Rev. Matthew Linn and Rev. Alexander Dobbin.  Covenanter churches came to be known as “Associate Reformed” congregations.  Eventually, in the mid-1800’s, Assoicate Reformed churches united with some of the factions from which they had split earlier in the century, and became known as the United Presbyterian Church. For the benefit of future Patterson researchers, we list the Patterson marriages recorded by these Covenant ministers:


Marriages by the Rev. Alex Dobbin

found on-line at


•Susanna Patterson m. David Dunwoody 27 Jan 1778 in Mt. Pleasant [prob. the

      Mt. Pleasant in Westmoreland Co.]

•Agnis Patterson m. Balt [sic] Kirkpatrick 24 Mar 1774 in Drummore [sic—Drumore Twp.,       Lancaster Co.?]

•Alexander Patterson m. Jenny Porter 10 Mar 1785 in Mountjoy [Lancaster Co.]

•James Patterson m. Betty Withrow 26 Oct 1797 in Hamilton’s Barn [should be Hamilton’s “Bann”; in Gettysburg in present- day Adams Co.]

•Thomas Patterson m. Elizabeth Brown 1 May 1781 in Midleton [Middleton was a village in       Paxtang; another Middleton was in Cumberland Co.]

•Thomas Patterson m. Agnis Blaekly [sic] 9 Jul 1789 in Menallen [in Fayette Co.]

•William Patterson m. Elenor Porter* 19 Sep 1797 in Hamilton’s Barn [see above]


*Note this is the same name of the wife of Robert Patterson listed in Miss Espy’s 1906 D.A.R. magazine article!  (See “Introduction.”)


Marriages by Rev.Matthew Linn


•Sarah Patterson m. Thos. Townsley 17 Jan 1782

•Jemima Patterson m. Hugh Alexander 15 Feb 1787

•John Patterson m. Anne Henderson 6 Apr 1787

•Anne Patterson m. Wm. Fossett “of near Carlisle” 26 Jul 1791



Other Lancaster Co. Marriages


•John Paterson m. Catharine Franciscus 15 Mar 1787

•Francis Patterson to Mary Steele 25 Apr 1792

•James Patterson to Jane Cooper 29 Sep 1755 – St. James Church, Lancaster, PA

•Jennet Patterson m. James Johnson 24 Dec 1776




Miscellaneous Marriage Records


St. Paul’s Church, P.E., Philadelphia

(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol IX)

Susannah Patterson          m. William Hammond                     1 Mar 1760            (p. 443)

Robert Patterson              m. Esther Nichole/Nichols            19 Aug 1761            (p. 445)

William Patterson             m. Susanna Williams                      27 Dec 1764           (p. 452)

Sarah Patterson                m. John Reeves                              8 June 1769           (p. 453)

John Patterson                 m. Elizabeth Matson                        4 May 1770           (p. 454)

Isabella Patterson             m. Philip De Beust                        29 May 1778            (p. 461)


(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol II)

Elizabeth Patterson          m. John Cloud                                17 May 1776           (p. 225)

Jane Patterson                 m. John Hall                                    -- June 1746           (p. 225)

Jane Patterson                 m. Lot[ta] Evans                              -- Nov 1747           (p. 225)

John Patterson                 m. Ann Anderson                           30 Nov 1774           (p. 226)

John Patterson                 m. Elizabeth Matson                         4 May 1770          (p. 226)

Malley Patterson              m. William Taylor                            21 Feb 1776           (p. 226)

Margaret Pattrson            m. Benjamin Griffey                           2 Apr 1768           (p. 226)

Mary Patterson                m. Archibald Gardner                     11 Nov 1760           (p. 226)

Robert Patterson              m. Esther Nichols                            19 Aug 1761          (p. 226)

Sarah Patterson                m. John Reeves                                8 June 1769          (p. 226)

Susannah Patterson          m. William Hammond                        1 Mar 1760          (p. 226)

Thomas Patterson            m. Mary Brockden                            3 Mar 1768           (p. 226)

William Patterson             m. Susannah Williams                      27 Dec 1764           (p. 226)



Marriage Record of Christ Church, Philadelphia

(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 206))

Sarah Patterson           m. Joseph Shute                        7 Oct 1757

Isabella Patterson        m. Patrick Hayes                      28 July 1773

Jane Patterson             m. John Hall                            18 June 1746

John Patterson             m. Abigail Raton                       8 Nov 1782

Maria Patterson           m. Robert Eaglesfield Griffith   22 May 1797

Rachel Patterson          m. Michael McClean               30 May 1749

Sarah Patterson            m. Benjamin Chambers           24 Sept 1742

Thomas Patterson        m. Mary Murrell                      18 Sept 1783

Thomas Patterson        m. Mary Brockden                     3 Mar 1768

Wm. Patterson             m. Mary Garreson                   16 May 1728


Marriage Records of Swede’s Church, Philadelphia 1750-1810

(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 491)

Andrew Patterson        m. Mary Williams               31 Aug 1765

Ann Patterson              m. Adam Craus                  23 June 1780

Archlbald Patterson      m. Catharine Anderson      27 May 1778

Catherine Patterson      m. William Brown                30 July 1759

Elizabeth Patterson       m. Alexander Harvey            1 June 1777

Elizabeth Patterson      m. Henry Horner                  25 Oct 1777

John Patterson             m. Ann Anderson                  1 Nov 1774

John Patterson             m. Jane Lamont                   26 Aug 1797

Joseph  Patterson         m. Mary Jones                   23 June 1782

Martha Patterson          m. Elihu Morris                  13 June 1791

Mary Patterson             m. John Brady                   25 Nov 1797

Mary Patterson             m. Patrick Condren           25 Mar 1776

Patty Patterson              m. Samuel White               22 Sept 1791

Robert Patterson           m. Elisabet Brown               11 Jan 1759

Sarah Patterson             m. John Blankny                 26 Oct 1782

Thomas Patterson          m. Sarah Ewin                    27 Jan 1778

William  Patterson         m. Ann Clamance                 4 Apr 1768

William Patterson          m. Catharine Matthews         4 Feb 1777

William Patterson          m. Lorannah Kenney         10 May 1777

James Pattison              m. Elizabeth Gough                5 Jan 1792


Marriage Records of First Presbyterian Church at Carlisle 1785-1812

(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 595)

George Patterson            m. Nancy Holmes                      23 Nov 1792

Jean Patterson                m. James Walker                          8 Apr 1794

Mrs. ___ Patterson         m. William Patton                       24 July 1806

William Patterson            m. Eva Pense                             19 Apr 1796



Marriage Record of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Chester 1704-1733

(PA Archives, Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 607)

John Patterson         m. Margaret Gill                         3 Aug 1729  


Marriage Records Reformed Church Philadelphia 1748-1802

(PA Archives Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 715)

Christopher Patterson  m. Mary Murren                      27 Sept 1778

David Patterson           m. Catharina Edger                    3 July 1753


Marriage Records First Baptist Church Philadelphia 1761-1803

(PA Archives Series 2, Vol VIII, p. 715)

Catherine Patterson       m. John Fry                            14 Mar 1801

Elizabeth Patterson        m. William Kerlin                      6 July 1794

Jane Patterson               m. Malcom Wright                   3 Aug 1799

John Patterson               m. Letitia Mitchell                   23 Mary?????? 1800



Comments on Marriage Records:


            The marriage records of Rev. Elder of the Paxton (Paxtang) Presbyterian Church are extant as far back as 1741.  We find no Pattersons or Patersons listed in them other than a John Patterson who married Jane Johnston in 1771. Also, no Pattersons are found in the records of the “next closest” Presbyterian church, the Derry Presbyterian Church. 


            The absence of Pat(t)erson names in either the records of the Paxtang Presbyterian Church or of the Derry Presbyterian Church—both so near to where “our” Peter was living—proves conclusively that Peter and his fellow Pattersons were members of the Covenanter sect.  That Peter was a Covenanter also helps to explain the lack of information about him and his family, and helps to explain how previous researchers, in frustration, may have leapt to wrong conclusions. Covenanters “flew under the radar,” so to speak.  They did not encourage cooperation with government authorities (excepting, it seems, regarding the defense of their country in Revolultionary times) and they seem to have intermarried only with other Covenanter families for quite some time after their arrival in America.  In other words, these clannish Covenanter Pattersons seem to have “kept to themselves” to an extraordinary degree. For example,we have read that some ardent Covenanters even refused to vote until well into the 19th century!




Burial Records


            We have found no Pattersons buried in Paxtang Twp.  This might be explained by the information found in Bucher Ayres’ history of the “Stewarts of Paxtang,” as annotated by a descendant, Minnehaha Finney:  “Hugh Stewart’s ancestors [Hugh was uncle to Mary Patterson’s husband, Elijah Stewart; we believe Mary Patterson to be “our” Peter’s sister]                                                                                                                                          


having been Covenanters,  naturally assisted in organizing a congregation of Seceders and establishing a church in which the family worshiped many years, which church and congregation have long since passed away, with nothing left but the little graveyard and since it has fallen into ruins there is nothing but the D.A.R. monument, enscribed with the names of all that could be found on the scattered pieces of tombstones lying about…”  (on-line at  If there ever WAS a “Peter Pat(t)erson, Sr.”—father to “our” Peter, Mary Patterson-Espy’s father—then this is most probably where he would have been buried. It is not likely that any of the tombstones in the old Paxtang Covenanter graveyard would still be readable, as Minnehaha Finney wrote her comments at the end of the 19th century, and described the stones as already being in “ruins.”


            The “main-stream” Presbyterian Church nearest to where “our” Peter had settled was what is now known as Paxton Presbyterian Church. It was under the pastorate of Rev. John Elder as early as 1738.  Information from all of the headstones in this cemetery was transcribed as an Eagle Scout project, and it is now online at  There are no Pat(t)ersons buried at Paxton (formerly Paxtang) Presbyterian Church cemetery. There are also no Patterson/Paterson burials at the next closes church to where “our” Peter lived, the Derry Presbyterian Church at Hershey (formerly Derry).   This is additional proof that all the Pat(t)ersons in the Paxtang area were Covenanters, a group distinct from these two “mainstream” Presbyterian churches.


            Also, we obtained a copy of a book entitled Cemetery Records of Martic Twp., Lancaster Co., PA but found no Patersons or Pattersons in the index. (Martic is next to Drumore Twp., where that “other” Peter Patterson was listed on various tax lists. (See above.)

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Linda Hansen
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