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Gilbreath, Patrick

GILBREATH, Patrick (b. 1739 Stirling?, Scotland – d. 1817 Belfast, Maine, immigrated to Pennsylvania about 1773) – The following was written by Patrick Gilbreath’s son Benjamin Gilbreath in 1864:

“My Father remained two years or more with the Army, was taken prisoner, I think he said at the Battle of Brandywine. He, with others, was put on board of a prison ship called the Jearsies and kept a long time in the Harbor at New York, until more than half of their member died of poison and starvation, then they were taken to Hallifax, where after suffering everything but death, they agreed to join the British. After getting Arms and their uniforms (red coats) and acquiring a little confidence, they amused themselves by sailing a large open boat in the harbour. After a while, thinking they were of no use there, seventeen of them agreed one evening to try their fortunes in navigating the Bay of Fundy, how long they were out I do not recollect; but on a morning they were within hearing of the surf on the shore, the fog rose a little, they saw a vessel which they knew, within half gunshot distance, they pulled for shore, halled their Boat up a little, caught their arms and sought safety in the woods, but being pursued by a superior force of armed men, they agreed, gave their pursuers a shot, and divided. My father, with eight of the others, took one course, while the others took a different course. The party with my Father, after three days in the wilderness, came to a place called Pemmaquid, where they obtained some refreshment. The people, learning that my Father was a millwright, they employed him to build a grist mill at a place called Round Pond, some 10 miles north of that place. My father’s name was Patrick Gilbreath.”

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Janet W. Brown
Vancouver, WA
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