Col. Henry Babcock

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Henry Babcock

Also Known As: "Harry"
Birthplace: Westerly, Kings County, Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
Death: Died in Stonington, New London County, Connecticut, United States
Place of Burial: Stonington, New London County, Connecticut, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Dr. Joshua Babcock, Maj. Gen. and Hannah Babcock
Husband of Mary Babcock
Father of Benjamin Franklin Babcock; Maj. Paul Babcock; Dudley Babcock; Benjamin Babcock; Joshua Babcock and 1 other
Brother of Rev. Luke Babcock; Adam Babcock; Hannah Bours; Frances Babcock; Paul Babcock and 3 others

Occupation: Military officer, Lawer
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Col. Henry Babcock

DAR Ancestor #:A004240

Henry served as a colonel in the Revolutionary War and as a Captain of a company in Canada during the French War in 1754.

  1. Occupation: lawyer and M. C. 5
  2. Military Service: Rhode Island Regiment in the French and Indian Wars 5
  3. Military Service: 1754 captain of a company in Canada, during the French War; and Colonel in the Army during the Revolutionary War 5
  4. Military Service: BET 1755 AND 1756 captain under Sir William Johnson, after the battle of Fort George 5
  5. Military Service: BET 1756 AND 1758 major 5
  6. Military Service: 1759 Colonel at Ticonderoga when it was captured and where he was wounded. He was publicly thanked by Lord Amherst 5
  7. Military Service: ABT 1775 Revolutionary War Patriot, served as a colonel in the Colonial Army 5
  8. Religion: member of the First Baptist Church of Boston, Boston, Suffolk County, MA 5

HENRY BABOCK served with General Putnam in the Boston Campgaign for a time, and in March, 1776, was appointed Colonel Commandant of the Rhode Island Colonies Brigade. (Rhode Island State Archives and Yale Heroes in the American Revolution.)

Register of the California Society of the Sons of the American Revolution : instituted at San Francisco, California, October 22d, 1875 as Sons of Revolutionary Sires.

San Francisco, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Co., 1901, 326 pgs.

Page 185


Colonel Babcock—" Handsome Harry," his eldest son— born in 1736, took his graduating degree at Yale College at the age of sixteen.22 At eighteen he was made Captain of a company in the Rhode Island contingent against the French in 1756. In the campaign against Ticonderoga, 1758, he was promoted to be colonel of our regiment. Leading 500 men, he had 110 killed and wounded, and received a musket ball in his knee. Altogether he served five campaigns in the old French war " with great reputation." In the Revolution, a staunch patriot, he tvas appointed to the command at Newport in 1776. He had learned artillery at Woolwich in England, and drove off the British man-of-war Rose with an eighteenpounder, fired by his own hand from the open beach. A severe illness in the winter incapacitated him from further service. A practicing lawyer, he was most eloquent when he spoke before the General Assembly. Some fifteen years earlier he had spent a year in England and was most hospitably received. Tradition commonly ran that, when presented at Court, instead of kissing the Queen's haod, he saluted the royal cheek, and " the liberty was not resented." This myth at least shows how popular the handsome Colonel was.

source: Early Rhode Island: a social history of the people

By William Babcock Weeden


Birth: May 25 1736

Death: Oct 7 1800

Burial: Babcock Cem, Stonington, New London Co, CT, USA


RI removed Col Henry Babcock from command of its troops at Newport Apr 1776 because, legislature determined, he was mentally unstable. Unfortunately, printed record doesn’t give us any juicy details. Stephen Babcock’s 1903 genealogy of Babcock family described col’s infirmity this way: In 1777 he had severe fit of sickness which so affected his mind he never entirely recovered. But records show people judged Babcock insane early in previous yr, & w/hindsight Geo Washington recalled “Proofs...of Distempered Mind” in Dec 1775. Going back even bef then, Babcock’s political loyalties might have been volatile. 26 Dec 1774 British officer in Boston wrote to friend in Edinburgh abt New Eng Loyalists: You were right in your opinion, Brig Gen Timothy Ruggles of MA, Col Babcock of RI, & Col Eleazer Fitch of CT, are staunch to Govt. Was 2nd man Col Henry Babcock? He was actually living over border in Stonington, CT, but closely assoc w/RI. Can find no other Col Babcock. Moving even further back, Babcock genealogy is 1 of several books that describe this anecdote abt Harry Babcock: In 1761 he visited Eng, where he was treated w/great respect. He was introduced to Queen, & it is said instead of kissing her hand, as was custom of people in his rank, he boldly kissed her cheek, remarking such was “mark of politeness in Am.” Correctness of this statement is doubted. So was behavior sign of intermittent mania? Certainly diagnosis would fit w/how Babcock reacted to being dumped from his RI command. 28 May 1776 w/in month of his official removal, he was writing to John Hancock w/bright new idea: I should be extremely obliged to you if you would be pleased to lay bef honourable Continental Congress following proposals:

That I have leave to raise 2 battalions of marines, to consist of 500 men each, & each battalion to consist of 6 companies, w/Capt-Lt to each battalion, 4 officers to each company. Make not least doubt, provided I have leave to name officers, I raise men in 2 mos. Would recommend paying 2 mos’ pay in advance, but I leave to wisdom of Congress.

I should expect rank of Brig-Gen, as last war I had rank of Col in years ’58 & ’59, & 1000 in my regiment. . . .

I must desire, if great load of cares which rests upon you will permit, I may have honour of line from you next post. If Congress adopt the scheme, which I believe would be of publick utility, I will immediately wait upon them.

Congress did not take up Col Babcock’s offer.

•Occ: Lawyer

•Note: Entered Yale when he was 12 yrs old, graduated at head of his class in 1752, at age 16. Served in French & Indian Wars, French War, Am Rev.

Served as col in Rev War & as Capt of company in Canada during French War in 1754.

Military Svc 15 Jan 1776 RI Regiment as Col in Am Rev War.

Served w/Gen Putnam in Boston Campgaign for time, & Mar 1776, was appointed Col Commandant of RI Colonies Brigade. (RI State Archives & Yale Heroes in Am Rev.)


RI Regiment in French & Indian Wars

Capt of company, in 1754, in Canada, during French War; & Col in Army during Rev War

1755-1759, Capt under Sir Wm Johnson, after battle of Ft George

1756-1758, Maj

1759, Col at Ticonderoga when it was captured & where he was wounded, publicly thanked by Lord Amherst


William A Stanton, PhD, DD, Record, Genealogical, Biographical, Statistical, of Thomas Stanton, of CT, & His Descendants. 1635-1891, Albany, NY, Joel Munsell's Sons, 1891, p 43, 425, 485

Anna Chesebrough Wildey, Genealogy of Descendants of William Chesebrough, NY: Press of T A Wright 1903, p 61, 210

Richard Anson Wheeler, History of Stonington, CT, 1649-1900, Press of Day Pub Co, New London, CT, 1900, p 214, 217


Stephen Babcock, Babcock Genealogy (NY: Eaton & Mains, 1903), New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, MA 02116, p 33, 64-65

Vital Records, Stonington, CT, Vol 3, p 219

E Glenn Denison, Denison Genealogy, Josephine Middleton, Peck, Donald L Jacobus, Pequot Press, Inc, Stonington, CT, 1963, p 8

Natl Register of Society Sons of Am Rev, NY, NY: Louis H Cornish, 1902

Religion: mbr of 1st Baptist Church, Boston, Suffolk Co, MA

Jane Curci (

Register of CA Soc of Sons of Am Rev: instituted at San Francisco, CA, Oct 22 1875 as Sons of Rev Sires.

San Francisco, CA: Pacific Press Pub Co, 1901, p 185

John Breckinridge Babcock, San Francisco

US Army Officer. b New Orleans, LA, Feb 7 1843. Son of Giles Babcock & Anne E (Denison) Grdson of Paul Babcock &-ggrdson of Henry Babcock &-gggrdson of Joshua Babcock & Hannah (Stanton) Babcock, b Westerly, RI, May 17 1707, d there Apr 1 1783. He graduated from Yale class of 1724, & was earliest graduate who held commission for svcs during Rev. May 1776 he was elected Maj-Gen of Colony Brigade, which consisted of 10 regiments for Colony of RI. He was also mbr of State Cunsel of War & appointed 1 of committee of those who proceeded to NY to consult w/Gen Washington respecting defense of RI.

Henry Babcock served w/Gen Putnam in Boston Campaign for time, & in Mar 1776 was appointed Col Commandant of RI Colonies Brigade. (RI State Archives & Yale Heroes in Am Rev.)

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Col. Henry Babcock's Timeline

April 26, 1736
Westerly, Kings County, Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
November 6, 1765
Age 29
Stonington, New London Co., CT
March 13, 1768
Age 31
Pawcatuck, Stonington, New London County, Connecticut Colony
January 7, 1770
Age 33
Stonington, New London Co., CT, USA
October 29, 1771
Age 35
Stonington, New London Co., CT, USA
November 30, 1773
Age 37
Stonington, New London County, Connecticut Colony
Age 53
October 7, 1800
Age 64
Stonington, New London County, Connecticut, United States
Stonington, New London County, Connecticut, United States