Jesse Adair (c.1731 - 1797)

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Captain Jesse Adair's Geni Profile

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Birthplace: Antrim, Antrim, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
Death: Died in Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England, United Kingdom
Managed by: Anne-Marie Healy-Kalishoek (C)
Last Updated:

About Jesse Adair

Captain Jesse Adair

Research still in progress

  • Adair Jesse 2nd Lieut, 41st 13 July 1756 Promoted 1st Lieut, 113th Co
  • Adair Jesse 2nd Lieut, 41st Company; 1st Lieut, 113th 19 Jan 1759
  • Adair Jesse 1st Lieut 113th 27 Oct 1760 Accession of George III
  • Adair Jesse 1st Lieut, 44th 1 May 1763 Peace Establishment
  • Adair Jesse 1st Lieut 58th 10 December 1770
  • Adair Jesse Adjutant Chatham 14 August 1775
  • ..........For his meritorious & distinguished behaviour in action on 17 June 1775
  • Adair Jesse Captain Lieut, 12th 24 July 1775
  • Adair Jesse Captain 45th 17 Oct 1776
  • Adair 2nd Lieutenant 55th 17 Oct 1776 Cancelled
  • Adair Jesse Captain 48th 31 August 1783 Peace Establishment

Battle of Bunker Hill

Adair is characterized in some of the passages that I’ve read as a young, impetuously aggressive officer. One would imagine that in a Marine Lieutenant from an Irish family with a strong military heritage. However, Adair was not a young officer. He was somewhere between 35 and 44 years of age at the time, though he certainly was aggressive. He may also have served in the French and Indian Wars with Pitcairn. At the Battle of Bunker Hill, Adair would be noted , not only for his courage in surmounting the colonist’s defenses, but also as the “Eldest Lieutenant”. (That makes his promotion with the seniority system not indicative of any particular merit.) There is also a story of Lieutenant Adair as not quite the sharpest officer during the 1776 evacuation of Boston as he was dispatched along Boston Neck to impede any pursuit.

Lieutenant Adair of the Marines, an acting engineer, was ordered to strew crow-feet in front of the lines to impeded the march of the enemy, as it was supposed they should attack our rear. Being an Irishman, he began scattering the crowfeet about from the gate towards the enemy, and, of course, had to walk over them on his return, which detained him so long that he was nearly taken prisoner.

Though it may simply have been an ethnic joke at the Irishman’s expense. Battles of Lexington and Concord

'Casualties among British Officers on the Concord Mission, April 19 to June 17, 1775' is listed: Lt. Jesse Adair, Royal Marines under a subcategory of Advance Patrol, Volunteers and Officers on Special Assignment. Perhaps this is why on p. 282 the text reads: "Also at Bunker Hill was Lieutenant Jesse Adair, the hard-charging young Irish Marine who had volunteered to lead the British vanguard to Lexington, and sent it headlong into Parker's militia. At Bunker Hill he volunteered again to lead the assault, though he was not supposed to be there at all, and miraculously survived. On the day the British Army left Boston he volunteered once more to command its rear guard. His orders were to slow the American advance by scattering in its path a thick carpet of caltrops, or crow's feet.

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Captain Jesse Adair's Timeline

1731
1731
Antrim, Antrim, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1765
August 24, 1765
Age 34
Belfast,Antrim, COI
1768
September 1768
Age 37
Antrim, Antrim, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1770
April 8, 1770
Age 39
Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1771
August 7, 1771
Age 40
Antrim, Antrim, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1772
December 6, 1772
Age 41
Antrim, Antrim, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1775
1775
Age 44
1797
August 11, 1797
Age 66
Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England, United Kingdom
????
Lincoln Cathedral Lincoln Lincolnshire, England