This Independence day will have a whole new meaning for me. Up until now, the 4th of July has always been about picnics, barbeques and fireworks.
Don’t get me wrong, I know that today is the anniversary of when the Second Continental Congress approved The Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring the United States independent from Great Britain.
But what I didn’t know was that just a few short years after that, Thomas Bullard, my 5th great-grandfather, armed as a private enlisted on November 10, 1778 in Capt. Sharps Co. 10th Regiment and aided in the fight against the Tories to keep us independent from Great Britain.
Here you can see on his actual pension statement, that he served 12 months and 12 days, and who he served under.
It was quite the surprise to read his pension statement and see in his own words where he went and what he did through out his service.
On one particular incident he reported about, he stated that the company and regiment to which he belonged fought at the battle of Stono Ferry; that at the time he was sent in a detachment of about three hundred men to capture some British on board a boat up Stono River; that the detachment fired upon the boat and killed some of the men on board and took the rest prisoners.
Researching this, I found that the battle of Stono Ferry was fought on January 20, 1779 near Charleston, South Carolina. It’s amazing to me after all this time, I can locate a document that can tell me precisely where my ancestor was during the American Revolution.
Not only that, but on the North Carolina Digital Collection site I found images of his family bible.
This page shows not only his birth, but the birth of his granddaughter, and my 3rd great-grandmother.
I’m very thankful to my ancestor Thomas Bullard, and what he did for our country.
This 4th of July not only will I be hanging out by the pool, enjoying a barbecue and wishing we could shoot fireworks (too many wildfires to even consider this), I’ll be talking to my children and family about Thomas Bullard and his role in the American Revolution.
Today I will be honoring his memory. He deserves it!