Capt. Ephraim Jenkins, of Toms River

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Ephraim Jenkins

Birthdate: (56)
Birthplace: of, South Kingstown, Washington, Rhode Island
Death: March 22, 1782 (52-60)
Toms River, Monmouth, New Jersey (Killed by Loyalists in the American Revolutionary War)
Immediate Family:

Son of Job Cook Jenkins and Content Bull
Father of Avas Springer
Brother of Job Jenkins; Rebecca Sluman and Mary Jenkins

Managed by: Erica Howton
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Capt. Ephraim Jenkins, of Toms River

Capt. In Col. Holmes Battalion, Monmouth County, New Jersey, June 14, 1780

Captain Ephraim Jenkins was an active patriot ; he had commanded a company of the Monmouth militia, and June 14th, 1780, he had been commissioned as Captain in Colonel Holmes' regiment of State troops. From the fact that the writer has not been able to find any mention of him after the fight, and that his children were afterwards scattered along shore to be cared for by strangers, it is probable that he was one of the two captains said to have been killed. One of his daughters Avas adopted by Major John Price, of Goodluck and she subsequently married a man named Springer.


     The Revolutionary War in Toms River was strongly supported by hopeful Americans-to-be. One instance of British attack upon the rebels at Toms River is discussed by author William S. Horner:

     "On Sunday, March 24, 1782, the village of Toms River, a very valuable base of patriot operations, was attacked and captured by a mixed force of about 100 Loyalists and Refugees, commanded by Captain Evans Thomas, Lieutenant Blanchard and Lieutenant Owen Roberts, of Pennsylvania, and convoyed by the British armed brig "Arrogant." This force is said to have been augmented by a party of pine-robbers and shore-pirates under command of the notorious Captain Richard Davenport." (William S. Horner, This Old Monmouth of Ours, (1974), 222.)

     This same account is described later in his book as an "Immolation" of Toms River. He writes:

     "On Saturday evening, March 23, 1782, Toms-River, then often called Dover [because it is part of Dover Township], lay quietly at the mouth of the considerable stream from which it took its name, a hustling, bustling little hamlet and harbor of some thirty or forty houses, stores, mills, saltworks, and shipyards.

     The village was defended by block-house and barracks for the housing of a small garrison. These were surround by a "seven-foot" palisade of sharpened stakes, at the four corners of which, on raised platforms, were mounted a like number of small brass swivel-guns.

     The garrison consisted of a roll of honor, Captain Joshua Huddy, commanding; Seargeants David Landon and Luke Storey; with matroses David Applegate, William Case, David Dodge, James Edsall, John Eldridge, John Farr, James Kennedy, James Kinsley, Cornelius McDonald, James Mitchell, John Mitchell, John Morris, John Niverson, George Parker, Joseph Parker, John Predmore, Moses Robbins, Thomas Rostoinder, Jacob Stillwagon, Seth Storey, John Wainwright, and John Wilbur. To these effectives must be added the names of Garret Irons, Bart Applegate, Isaiah Weeks, Major John Cook, Captain Ephraim Jenkins, and others, who served as volunteers either within or without the works, and some of whom lay down their lives on that red day.

     On Sunday night at sunset the lately thriving village was but smoldering ashes, glowing embers, reaking ruins. Two houses alone were exempted from the torch, the one belonging to a cousin of the Tory Dillon, the other spared by freakish remorsefulness of the outlawed Bacon. It belonged to the widow of Joshua Studson, whose husband Bacon had but lately slain.

     Toms-River had been baptized in flame, bathed in blood, devoted to destruction. She had undergone the ordeal of fire. Her defenders had been killed or captured. Her houses, stores, barns, mills, and shops had been given over to the flames. Her most prominent and useful citizens had been carried away to British prison-ships. She lay prostrate in her ruin.

     Yet, none the less, did she once more rise, Phoenix-like, from her sackcloth and ashes, and soon again enrobe herself in peace and plenty."(William S. Horner, This Old Monmouth of Ours, (1974), 417-18.)

(4) A blockhouse is a small fort, one building, usually in an isolated position. The one Huddy was defending protected the village of Toms River and the salt works near by.

“The post into which the rebels had thrown themselves was six or seven feet high, made with large logs, with loop-holes between and a number of brass swivels on the top, which was entirely open, nor was there any way of entering but by climbing over. They had, besides swivels, muskets with bayonets and long pikes for their defence.”

The description of the Blockhouse is from A History of Monmouth and Ocean Counties. By Edwin Salter. E. Gardner & Son, Bayonne, NJ, 1890, p. 205.

  1. The Narragansett Historical Register (Google eBook) James N. Arnold. Heritage Books, Sep 1, 1996.  "The Jenkins Family of Rhode Island. Page 161. Job Jenkins married Content Bull, daughter of Ephraim & Mary (Coggleshell) Bull of S. Kingstown. "Job had a large family of children, but names are not found beyond what are given: Job, Ephraim, Rebecca, Mary."
  2. A History of Monmouth and Ocean Counties: Embracing a Genealogical Record of Earliest Settlers in Monmouth and Ocean Counties and Their Descendants. The Indians: Their Language, Manners, and Customs. Important Historical Events... (Google eBook). Edwin Salter. E. Gardner, 1890 - Monmouth County (N.J.) - 422 pages. Page 231. From circumstantial evidence, it is probable that Captain Ephraim Jenkins, of Toms River, was also killed.
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Capt. Ephraim Jenkins, of Toms River's Timeline

South Kingstown, Washington, Rhode Island
Age 39
Tom's River, Monmouth, New Jersey
March 22, 1782
Age 56
Toms River, Monmouth, New Jersey