John Lepper

John Lepper

Johnstown, Fulton County, New York, USA
Death 17 Aug 1840 (aged 74–75)
De Witt, Clinton County, Iowa, USA
Burial De Witt, Clinton County, Iowa, USA
Plot Lot 1 Addition,block1
Memorial ID 26777611 · View Source
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John Lepper was a veteran of the Revolution having joined Cap't Harrison's company at age 15,then enlisted in Cap't French's company, then in Cap't Cannon's co.,serving a total of 2 yrs 1 1/2 months. He took part in the battles of Johnstown and Canada Creek. Johnstown then being in Tryon, later Montgomery County. He came with family to Iowa Terr. in Oct., 1839 and died the following year. Buried "on a knoll" near the farm, he was re-interred in 1940 in Elmwood.
He married Mary Prime (Braeme) at Stone Arabia, NY, Aug 23, 1803. She was born 1779 and applied for his pension after his death. She died about 1854 near DeWitt, IA., place of interment unknown.

A letter from cousin Grace Hayden in the 70s stated the oral tradition was she died in "the old bear (Bair) house at Elvira. Looking at plat maps, there was a Bair property close to the Elvira cemetery, in which I presume she was interred, if not next to her husband "on a knoll".


BORN: 1765/1766 in Tryon Co., NY
SERVICE: Enlisted as a private August 1780 at age 15 in Captain Harrison's Company of New York troops and served two and a half months. Enlisted again on 01 April 1781 and served nine months as a private in Captain Franch's New York Company, Colonel Martinus Willett's Regiment. He took part in the battles of Johnstown and Canada Creek, was transferred to Captain James Cannon's Company, Colonel Martinus Willett's New York Regiment and served until his discharge in January 1783.
DIED: 17 Aug 1840, north of De Witt, Clinton Co., Territory of Iowa. Buried in a plot located in woods north of De Witt on land in northwest quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 1, Township 81, north of Range 3, east, De Witt Township. After many years the grave was finally located through the efforts of a grandson, John Lepper of Mason City, Iowa. The remains were exhumed and interred in Elmwood Cemetery, De Witt, Iowa. The De Witt Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution, De Witt, Iowa, provided a marker for the grave.

NARRATIVE: The ancestors of John Lepper came to America from the Palatinate, Germany, in 1710. It is said he was third in line from Johannes Philip Lepper whose father, Philip Hermann Lepper is believed to have been lost at sea. If so, the widow arrived with her children and appears in Governor Hunter's food lists at the tar camp on the Hudson River. The boy, Johannes/John Philip Lepper, was apprenticed in 1710 at the age of twelve, to John Hallock. His son, Ensign Conrad Lepper, born ca 1725 was the father of John Lepper, Revolutionary War soldier, born ca 1765, at Tribe's Hill, Tryon County (now Montgomery), New York. John Lepper had brothers, Weigant and Frederick. He was married twice; lived at Johnstown, New York, then at Greenfield and Springfield, Erie County, Pennsylvania. He was allowed a pension on application executed 17 October 1832, while living in Greenfield Township, Erie County, Pennsylvania, where he had moved from Batavia, New York. The family came to Iowa Territory in 1839, to Davenport, then to Clinton County and "squatted" on a tract of land three miles north of De Witt, Iowa Territory. Here they built a log cabin and here John Lepper died 17 August 1840 of "fever and ague." He was buried not far away on a knoll where there were three graves of young people who had died in earlier years. The grave was surrounded by a fence for a number of years. Later the cabin was covered with siding and the De Witt Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution planned to restore it as a memorial, but it burned before the project could be carried out. (Information provided by Grace Hayden, great great granddaughter of John Lepper.)

GENEALOGICAL DATA: John (Johannes) Lepper, born ca 1765, Tryon Co., NY, son of Ensign Conrad and Anna Barbara Lepper, married (1) 1787 at Tonda (Fonda?) Reformed Church to Sarah KOCH. They had three children: Peter, Henry, and Ann.

John Lepper married (2) 28 Aug 1803 at Stone Arabia, NY to Mary PRIME/BRAEME. She was born 01 Sep 1779-80, Montgomery Co., NY and died 2 Sep 1863, Clinton Co., IA. She was allowed a pension (W8043) on her application of 17 Mar 1854 while a resident of Center Grove Twp., Clinton Co., IA. Their children were:

James, born 24 Jul 1804, married Clarissa Buchanan.

Mary, born 22 Jun 1806 (Bap), married Sprague Perkins.

Betsey, born 1807, married 1827 to Sanford Mather. A descendant, Kent Alan Gebhard, provided family information.

Jacob, born 23 Oct 1810, married Lucia Walrod. (Grace Hayden, a descendant.) (Kent is also a descendant of Jacob.)

Sally, married Jacob Huff.

Jefferson, died young.

John, Jr., died at age 25.

Charles, wife unknown, resided at Jenny Lind, Columbia Co., WI.

Ira, born 31 Aug 1824, Tryon Co., NY, died 29 Dec 1907, Sioux City, IA, married 28 Jan 1847 at De Witt, IA to Phylinda Walrod. She was born 17 Sep 1828, NY, died 22 Jul 1914, Sioux City, IA. (Note: the Walrods emmigrated from Germany with the Leppers in 1710.) Their son, John Henry Lepper, born 29 Dec 1869, Clinton Co., IA, married 29 Dec 1890 to Irene Templeman. She was born 6 Oct 1871 at Norway, IA.

Published for the Iowa Society Daughters of the American Revolution by Abigail Adams Chapter Des Moines, Iowa; Walsworth Publishing Company; Marceline, Missouri
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 77-93938

(With my notes. KG)


1840 Territory of Iowa Census of Pensioners June 1, 1840:

John Lepper, age 79, Head of family with whom residing, George Parker (Do not know who he is. KG)


NOTE- The 1924 SAR application for Truman Harrington Walrod
states Lepper entered the army as a substitute for John Devon; this is the only time I have found this yet-unsubstantiated information. KG

Family Members





  • Created by: Kent Gebhard
  • Added: 12 May 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 26777611
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Lepper (1765–17 Aug 1840), Find A Grave Memorial no. 26777611, citing Elmwood Cemetery, De Witt, Clinton County, Iowa, USA ; Maintained by Kent Gebhard (contributor 47001358) .