Monday, February 3, 2014

Military Monday: A Pensioner One Hundred and Six Years Old (John Davis)

Commercial Advertiser (New York)
November 18, 1837

From the Southern Banner.

A PENSIONER ONE  HUNDRED AND SIX YEARS OLD. -- John Davis still continues to call on "Uncle Sam" semi-annually, for his pension, though he numbers a whole century and six years over.  I saw him a few days since, when he attended here to prove his identity, and his right to be counted among the living.

This aged veteran was born in Prince William county, Virginia, and for some time lived near the residence of George Washington, with whom he served in Braddock's war.  He afterward served through the whole Revoluntionary struggle.  His appearance does not betoken such extreme age -- his step is still quite active and firm, and he rode on horseback to this place (eleven miles) and returned the same day.  His hearing is but little impaired, and his vision such that he writes his name without spectacles.  He observed that his faculties were failing, especially his memory -- though sometimes his recollection was very perfect in recalling the past events of 'bygone days," but again he found himself frequently bewildered in a story, and indeed says he, "I begin to feel the effects of old age."  -- The last twenty years he has not tasted of ardent spirit, and what is most singular in this man's history, is his conversion at the age of ninety-nine, was baptized and still continues a constant member of the Baptist church.

Lawrenceville, Ga.  
Oct. 10, 1837

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