Matching family tree profiles for Major Benjamin Stites (II)
About Major Benjamin Stites (II)
It is said that in 1786 Benjamin STITES left his wife and family at Redstone (now Brownsville, Washington Co., PA) on the Ten Mile River and reached the OH valley. We learn from the following accounting and the record book of the Goshen Baptist Church, Green Co., PA hints of marital problems between Benjamin & Rachel STITES. Greene Co. & Washington Co., PA are located in the south-western corner of PA on the border with WV.
Aug Term 1791 Wm. Goforth, Judge Wm. Wells, Judge Wm. McMillan, Judge
"Benjamin Stites, Esq. presented to court an agreement of separation between him & his wife, Rachel STITES, dated 14 Apr 1786, Washington County, Pennsylvania under the seal of signature of the parties fully set out on record and also an affadavit of John Corbly & Wm. Crawford to prove said Rachel STITES guilty of the act of adultery which were both by orders of court: The affadavit is dated Washington County, PA, 30th Sep 1785 and at the same time said Stites obtained leave of court to have recorded evidence that his second wife, Mary Stites, voluntarily left his bed & board. Benjamin Stites, Jr., was the witness sworn in court."3
From The Tenmile Country and Its Pioneers on pp. 459-460 we can read about Benjamin:
CAPTAIN BENJAMIN STITES - Benjamin Stites was among the first of the New Jersey immigrants to settle in what is now Morgan Township. He was a descendant of a New England Family that removed first to Hempstead, Long Island, and then to Cape May, New Jersey. He first settled at the site of the old Pollock's Mill, where he was living at the time of the Revolution, and where he served as a captain at the First Battalion, Washington County, Pennsylvania, Militia. Later he sold this land to Jacob Rush, who made an assignment to George Newland of the mill site. Then Benjamin Stites bought land on Bates Fork of Tenmile, where he was living when he served as tax collector for Morgan Township in 1784. He later went back to New Jersey and interested Judge Symmes in a land proposition and together they got many thousands of acres of land on the Miami River of Ohio. He was to become the founder of the city of Cincinnati. A hint of his marital trouble is in the Church Book of Goshen Baptist Church, of which he and his wife, Rachel, were members, for on December 29, 1792, it notes that he was cut off from the fellowship of the church for "having married another wife, while the former wife is yet alive". His former wife, Rachel, was living alone on Tenmile when the Census for 1790 was taken, he having already gone to Limestone, Kentucky, where he made up his Miami Party. From Ohio comes more information about his family troubles and much other information. We learn that he was born at Scotch Plains, New Jersey, about 1740, and married Rachel ______ on September 22, 1768. Within a year he removed to Tenmile, where at least four children were born, and possibly five, before he and Rachel parted in 1786. Ten years later Rachel went to Cincinnati and began suing for a divorce, with Benjamin counter suing in his answer. She accused him of ill treatment, and spending the money that came into her from her family. She also stated that he had bigamously married Mary (Mills?) and after tiring of her had again married illegally, Hannah Waring, with whom he was then living. The testimony in this case reminds one of a Hollywood trial, and continues after the death of Benjamin Stites in 1804, when Green County land, patented to John Stites, came up for distribution. From it we learn the line of descent from Benjamin and Rachel Stites.
John Stites, born 1770, on Tenmile Creek, died in Ohio in 1794. Benjamin Stites, Jr., born February 1772, question of his legitimacy in Ohio Court records, but established by competent witnesses. Phoebe Stites, born 1774, married James Miranda. Richard Stites, born 1776. Rachel Stites, born 1783, married _____ Kibby.
After the war Captain Stites sees still to have remained in the service of the government and with his headquarters at Redstone, Pennsylvania, was fully occupied with Indian fighting and safe guarding convoys to military stations and settlements on the south bank of the Ohio. His service was subsequently recognized by the government by promotion to the rank of Major. (Excerpt from The History of One Frontier Family - Benjamin Stites Terry (II)).
Benjamin Stites, of New Jersey and later of western Pennsylvania, was an
Indian trader who in 1786 persuaded John Cleves Symmes, member of Congress from
New Jersey, to purchase land he had viewed between the Great Miami and Little
Miami Rivers. The tract includes present-day Cincinnati and the settlement
Benjamin Stites called "Columbia," part of the 10,000 acres he purchased from
From the DAR Genealogical Research Database:
Ancestor #: A110238
Birth: (CIRCA) 1748 SCOTCH PLAINS ESSEX CO NEW JERSEY
Death: 8-30-1804 CINCINNATI HAMILTON CO OHIO
Service Source: PA ARCH, 6TH SER , VOL 2, P 15
Service Description: 1) WASHINGTON CO MILITIA, GEN IRWINE
Created: 2002-03-27 23:23:55.3, Updated: 2010-01-15 08:38:36.0, By: 1) City: REDSTONE - County: WESTMORELAND CO - State: PENNSYLVANIA
Spouse Number Name
Created: 2002-03-27 23:17:13.16, Updated: 2002-03-27 23:17:13.16, By: Conversion 1) RACHEL X Created: 2010-01-15 08:38:36.0, Updated: 2010-01-15 08:38:36.0, By: 2) MARY PRICE Created: 2010-01-15 08:38:36.0, Updated: 2010-01-15 08:38:36.0, By: 3) HANNAH WARING
Major Benjamin Stites (II)'s Timeline
Scotch Plains, Union, NJ, USA
February 19, 1772
Berkeley, VA, USA
October 20, 1796
May 31, 1805
Scotch Plains, Union, NJ, USA