The Roster of Knowlton’s Rangers


I left the Air Force specifically to get out of a position where I had to sit in front of a computer for long hours every day.

Last night I found the roster containing the names of most of Knowlton’s Rangers. This morning I started emailing historical societies around the state and thought, shit, I should have a website to direct these people to. Hence, today is one of those long days spent behind a computer.

Below is the roster of Knowlton’s Rangers. If you have any information concerning these men (not currently available via Google) please let me know. Extra Brownie Points if you bring me a descendant (‘s contact information. No ski masks or sketchy getaway vans necessary.) Extra-extra Brownie Points if you can put me in contact with Knowlton’s direct descendent, Holly (Knowlton) Patraeus.


Thomas Knowlton, Ashford, detached from Durkees Conn. Cont. Regt. About Sept. 1, 76, to command of Rangers; mortally wounded in the affair or battle of Harlem Heights, Sept. 16; buried with military honors within the American lines on present Washington Heights, N.Y.


Andrew Colburn [New Hampshire], Major of Nixons Mass. Cont. Regt., appt. to command of Rangers, Oct. 1; wounded Oct. and retired.


Thomas U. Fosdick, New London, ensign in Chas. Webbs Regt.


Stephen Brown, Woodstock, of Durkees Regt.; in command of Rangers, after Knowltons death until about Oct. 1, when he returned to his Regt.

Thomas Grosvenor, Pomfret, of Durkees Regt.; returned to his Regt. About Oct. 1; cont. in 77.

Nathan Hale, Coventry, of Chas. Webbs Conn. Cont. Regt.; absent as spy in enemys lines; executed Sept. 22, 76.

Lemuel Holmes [New Hampshire], 1st Lieut. Sargents Mass. Cont. Regt.; rept. As Capt. Oct. 15, and commanded Rangers, succeeding Maj. Colburn; prisoner Nov. 16, 76; exch. Nov. 78.


Oliver Babcock, Stonington, 1st Lieut. Parsons Cont. Regt.; taken pris. Nov. 16, 76, at Fort Washington; exch. About Jan. 1, 77; died Jan. 25.

Jessee Grant, Litchfield, of Chas. Webbs Regt.; pris. Nov. 16, Ft. Washington; exch. Dec. 17, 80.

Abner Bacon, Canterbury, 1st Lieut. Chesters State Regt.; cont. in 77.

Ephraim Cleveland [Mass.], 1st Lieut. Sargents Regt.


Aaron Stratten [Mass.], 1st Lieut. Sargents Regt.

William Scott [Mass.], 1st Lieut. Sargents Regt.

Jacob Pope [Mass.], 2d Lieut.-Col. Jon Wards Mass. Reft.; cashiered Thomas Knowlton 9 Sept. 28, 76.


Benoni Shipman, New Haven, of Chas. Webbs Regt.; cont. in 77.

Aaron Cleaveland, Canterbury, of Chesters State Regt.

Daniel Knowlton, Ashford, of Chesters State Regt.; taken prisoner Nove. 26 at Ft. Washington; elder brother of Col. Knowlton.

Thomas Hender, Hartford, of Col. Wyllys Conn. Cont. Regt.; taken prisoner at Ft. Washington, Nove 16, 76. Ebenezer West, , of Hitchcocks R.I. Cont. Regt.

Non-Commissioned Officers and Privates of the Rangers, Taken Prisoners at Surrender of Fort Washington, N.Y. Island, Nov. 16, 76.

Detached from Durkees Regt., Conn.


Benjamin Irish

William Stuart


Nathl. Chesebrough

John Lay

George Wilson

Roswell Becket

Jabez Dewey

William Ashcraft

Joseph Sheffield

Roger Billings

Phineas Ellis

Reuben Skespicks

Ammon Harvey

Joshua Davis

Seth Norton

Jos. Hancock

Daniel Sampson

Abner Cole

Daniel Vanderpole

Moses Gun

Enoch Greenward

Thomas Skespicks

Charles Kelley

James Cheesbrough

Jos. Lankfort

Jos. Smith

Joel Jones, died Jan. 17,

Daniel Conner

Daniel Hitt

William Pearce

Detached from Wyllys Regt. Conn.


John Benton


Simeon Linsey

Elisha Taylor

Seth Done

Richard Chamberlain

Timoth Hubbert

Samuel Fails

Oliver Burnham

Asa Barns

Thomas Holmes

Levy Latimer

Detached from C. Webbs Regt. Conn.


David Thorp

Samuel Laes


Samuel Peck

Elisha Howel

Elisha Judson

William Jones

Elisha Peck

Samuel Robbins, died Jan. 14,

Thomas Herdike

David Beauel

Samuel Smith

James Bugbee

Roger Blaisdel

Hull Curtiss

Zephaniah Cummings, died Feb. 7

Thomas Cook

Benjamin Devenport

Thomas Fargo

Elihu Grant

Timoth Hodges

Samuel Hale

Detached from Chesters Regt.Conn


Abijah Read (Canterbury), died Jan 28.

Perese Ainsworth


Jacob Pettibone

Rufus Downing

Rufus Hibbert

Jedediah Dyer, died Jan 20.

Abner Adams

John Waid

Philip Williams

John Trarveret

Thomas Stone

Timothy Cady

Pender Jenison

Philip Abbott

Edward Hughes

John Hobbs

Luman Long

Richard Parsons, died Jan 19.

Hezekiah Wadsworth

Aden Marcey

John Miner

William Woodward

John Cooks

Josiah Underwood

John Adams, died Jan 16.

Detached from Sargents Regt. Mass .


Frederick Putnam

John Rains


Niles Beckwith

Josiah Macomber


Nathl Turner

Daniel Griswold

Joseph Goodrich, died Dec 2.

Joseph Spencer, died Nov. 2.

William Scott

Nicholas Ashley

Aaron Pettibone

Samuel Silsby

William Woodward

Levy Proctor

Israel Sheldon

Eliphalet Mason

Barna How

William Crowfoot

John Mores

Aaron Woodward

John Taylor

Barna Allien, died Nov. 28.

Joshua Wright

Serjt. Stephen Hempstead, New London, of Webbs Regt., a Ranger, wounded at Harlem Heights

Serjt. Nehemiah Holt, whom tradition places by the side of Knowlton when he fell

Frederick Knowlton, the Colonels son, who states in his pension papers that on his fathers death he was obliged to return to his home

Corp. George Wilson


  1. So, you asked for it. I too am a product of the USAF, 2nd generation flight status. In my case, it was aeroevacuation, Huey’s, C 130’s, C141’s – picking up bones. My son followed suit as an air refueler, KC 135’s – desert Storm. We are related to 1st Lieutenant Ephraim Cleveland on your Knowlton’s Ranger list, which provided our Son’s of the American Revolution status. I will be in my Knowlton’s Ranger uniform in July at the 128th National SAR Convention in Houston. I’m always looking for documentation concerning Lt. Cleveland as I also reenact before schools, in parades and other historical events, so fill my bucket!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. TC, thank you for replying, and also thank you for your service!
      In March I sent an email to the historical society of Canterbury, Connecticut (Lt. Cleveland’s original hometown before he relocated to Massachusetts) to ask about the Rangers from their town. They replied a week later, but were unable to find anything, and redirected me to the historical society in Killingly for genealogists for hire… I’m not yet at the pay-for-research phase.
      There is a brief mention of Ephraim in the “Diary of David How: a private in Colonel Paul Dudley’s regiment,” which is available for free on I’ve not yet had time to read it, but it may give you an idea of what life was like for Ephraim before Knowlton’s Rangers.
      The Ranger roster mentions an Ensign Aaron “Cleavland,” also from Canterbury. The last name there may have been a spelling error. In the Israel Putnam biography by William Livingston (also available at there are several mentions of a “Captain Aaron Cleveland of Canterbury.” I believe these may refer to the same man, though I do not have proof other than coincidence. This may be a cousin of Ephraim. That biography is a great read, nonetheless, and I found within it some great background on the Rangers.
      Finally, if you’ve not yet seen it, check out the family tree information at (
      If you or any distant relatives find any information regarding any of these men, please plug me in! I want to do right by these men and their families, and get their story told. My e-mail is


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