Gen. John Davis

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Gen. John Davis

Birthplace: United States
Death: July 11, 1827 (74)
Chester County, Pennsylvania, United States
Place of Burial: Malvern, Chester County, Pennsylvania, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Isaac Davis and Elizabeth Davis
Husband of Ann Davis Morton and ?? Davis
Father of Dr Isaac Davis; John Morton Davis; Sarah Davis; Joseph Davis; William Davis and 5 others
Brother of Benjamin Davis; Mary Morgan; Joseph Davis; Sarah Wilson and Elizabeth Howell

Managed by: Private User
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About Gen. John Davis


General in Revolutionary War

John Davis was born in Tredyffrin township, where he grew to manhood and married Ann Morton, a daughter of John Morton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. To them was born a family of seven children: Isaac, John Morton, Mary, Charles Justis, Ann, Benjamin and Albert. He entered the Continental army in 1776, as captain of a company he had raised, and on October 21, 1780, was commissioned a captain in the regular Pennsylvania line, serving as such until the close of hostilities, January, 1782, after which he became a member of the Society of the Cincinnati.

During the war he participated in the battles of Brandywine, Germantown, Paoli, Stony Point and Yorktown, and served with General Wayne in South Carolina and Georgia.

In April, 1800, he was appointed brigadier-general of the first brigade of Chester and Delaware county militia, and on March 31,1803, was commissioned associate justice of Chester county a position he filled until disabled by the increasing infirmities of age. he died at his home in this county in 1827

Burial: Valley Church

In the rear of valley church is a pew with plaque "Sacred to the memory of John Davis Esq. A brave and active officer in the Revolution War". Was for many years one of the associate Judges of the court and a long useful member & ruling elder of this church died in 1827 at an age of 73.

From Decennial register of the Pennsylvania Society of Sons of the Revolution:

Lieutenant, Colonel Samuel John Alice's Pennsylvania Musketry Battalion, March 19, 1776; First Lieutenant, Captain Lewis Farmer's Company, Pennsylvania Rifle Regiment, Colonel Samuel Miles, April 6, 1776; taken prisoner at Long Island; Captain, Ninth Regiment, November 15, 1776; transferred to First Regiment, January 17, 1781, Pennsylvania Line; retired January 1, 1783; at Three Rivers, Paoli, Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, Stony Point, Green Spring, and Yorktown. Member of the Pennsylvania State Society of the Cincinnati.


The surviving children of John Morton were as follows:

"Ann, the youngest, married, in 1784, Captain John Davis of Chester County, who had fought through the Revolutionary War as an officer of the Pennsylvania line."


From "Chester (And Its Vicinity,) Delaware County, In Pennsylvania". 2017. Google Books. Accessed March 29 2017. page 147

Ann Morton, (7th child of the signer), married in 1784, Capt. John Davis, of Tredyffrin Township, Chester County, Pa., son of Isaac and Elizabeth (Bartholomew , born in the year 1752. He entered the Continental service Nov. 15, 1776, as captain in the 9th Regt. of the Pennsylvania Line, and served until the close of the Revolution. "Saffelfs Records of the Revolutionary War" pp. 396, 417. He was present at the surrender of Cornwallis, when Gen. Lafayette took him by the hand and said: Captain Davis! this is a happy day for America.

After the war Captain Davis returned to the family estate near Paoli, where two generations of his ancestors had previously resided, and became an Associate Judge of the courts of Chester County, which position he occupied until his death. All his life he took great interest in military affairs, and became a General of Militia, which fact is recorded, I am informed, upon his tombstone. He was entitled under the different acts of Congress to half pay, commutation and bounty land, but neither he nor his heirs have been able to obtain either. He was a member of the Society of Cincinnati, and left three diaries of the events of the Revolutionary war, connected with his service, which are in possession of John W. Davis, of Oil City, Pa. An old sketch ofthelifeof Captain Davis, says, among other things: "He was a man of note in his day and was one of the first to join General Wayne in raising a regiment immediately on the breaking out of the war. He served continuously till its close, bearing a full share of the hardships and dangers of eight campaigns under his intrepid leader. He first saw fire at Three Rivers, and fought at Brandywine, Paoli, Germantown, Monmouth, Stony Point, Green Spring, Yorktown and in Georgia, and he traversed in the service every State in the Union, from the St. Lawrence to the Mobile. Though a brave officer, and in many battles and innumerable skirmishes, he passed through the war without a wound. He was for many years one of the Judges of our county Courts, and possessed a handsome landed estate in the Great Chester Valley. There are many that still recollect his erect, large and manly form, seated in his chair at the right of Judge Darlington, and always looking the full soldier, and wearing his high military air, even in his place of judgment. He died July 10, 1827, just half of a century after John Morton; having lived to see the death-bed prediction of his father-inlaw completely verified.

The father of Judge Davis was one of His Majesty's Justices of the Peace and of the Courts, a position similar to that held in the present day by our Justices of the Peace and associate Judges of the county Courts combined. 'Squire Davis' used to relate that in his day couples would come as far as ten and twenty miles to him to be married, the mode of travel being on horseback, the groom on his saddle with his bride on a pillion behind him. The pillion being so called from its form, being something like a pillow."

Captain John Davis, married his first wife Ann Morton, in 1784, he being then 30 years of age. They had the following children,

  • Isaac,
  • John Morton,
  • Mary, (b. 1796, d. 1868, unmarried,)
  • Charles Justis, Ann, Benjamin, and
  • Albert, and
  • three others who died young.

Captain Davis' remains were interred in the grave yard of the Great Valley Presbyterian Church, in Chester County. His second wife was the widow of Major McLean, a brother officer of the Captain during the Revolution.

From Find A Grave Memorial - SmartCopy: Mar 29 2017, 1:50:44 UTC

John Davis was a Lieutenant in Farmer's Company of Miles' Pennsylvania State Rifle Regiment. Later he was a Captain in the 9th and 1st Pennsylvania Regiments of the Continental Line. He was an original member of the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati. He later was a Brigadier General of the Pennsylvania Militia and an Associate Judge of the Chester County Court.

He was the son of Isaac Davis and Elizabeth Bartholomew.

American Republican July 31, 1827

Departed this life, at his residence in Tredffrin (sic) township, Chester County, on the 18th of July instant, JOHN DAVIS, Esq., for many years an Associate Judge of the Courts of said county, aged 74 years. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church in the Great Valley, and his remains were interred in the burying ground at that place on the 20th instant. An impressive address was delivered on the occasion by the Rev. William Latta, to a large and solemn concourse of relatives and friends of the deceased.

  • "Chester (And Its Vicinity,) Delaware County, In Pennsylvania". 2017. Google Books. Accessed March 28 2017. page 145 "From page 145: John Morton, the signer, married Ann Justis, of Chester County, and they had issue, as appears by his will duly registered at West Chester, Aug.26, 1778, three sons and five daughters; Aaron, Sketchley, John, Mary, Sarah, LYDIA, Ann, and Elizabeth."
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Gen. John Davis's Timeline

February 28, 1753
United States
Age 33
PA, United States
Age 34
Age 36
Age 39
PA, United States
Age 40
Age 42
Age 44
Venango, PA, United States
Age 48