An interesting document

Page 57


While researching the Rev War pension records of my 7th great grandfather Col. Jonathan Holman I came across this document. From the other documents in this file I was able to assume that Jonathan’s second wife was trying to get the pension he was owed after he died. I can also assume that this was something she was using to prove his service in the Revolutionary War.

This is interesting to me because of the mention of the Washington Papers. Of course when I see something mentioning Washington I get excited. I would love for one of my ancestors to have known or worked with Washington. However, I’m not sure what this document means. It says that:

In Volume 99 Page 226 of the Washington Papers, there is on file a paper purporting to be “a return of the regiment of foot in the service of the United Colonies, commanded by Colonel Jona. Holman,” dated Sept. 27 1776, and signed by “Jonathan Holman, Col.”

To my understanding Washington wrote the “Washington Papers” right? If that is true, why does this say that Jonathan Holman signed his own account in them? Or am I reading this completely wrong? The other question I have is the reason it says that no record of service could be found when it plainly says that he returned with a regiment?

As if this document wasn’t exciting enough. At the very end it is signed by “James Buchanan”. Putting that with the fact this came from the Department of State during the time Mr. Buchanan was  Secretary of State (1845-1849), can it be safely assumed that this James Buchanan is the same one who became the 15th President?

Just finding documents on my ancestors is huge for me. But this one has kept me on the edge of my seat for a few days now.



I just did a Google search for James Buchanan’s signature and this is what I found.


I think it’s pretty darn spot on to the signature in my document. It’s pretty exciting to know that this one document ties my ancestor indirectly to two presidents. And the fact that James Buchanan did a little research on Jonathan Holman is beyond words. No matter the outcome. This is why I love genealogy.


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