Capt John Paul Schott

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Capt John Paul Schott

Death 18 Jul 1829 (aged 84)
Pennsylvania, USA
Burial Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA
Plot Section A, Lot 72-North & 73
Memorial ID 67823098 · View Source
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Revolutionary War Continental Army Officer. Born in Berlin, Prussia, his father was a high ranking army officer in the service of Prussian Emperor Frederick the Great. In 1760, at the age of 16, he was himself commissioned as an officer in the Prussian Army, in which he would serve continually for the next 15 years. As a 1st Lieutenant, he fought in the Seven Years War, by which near the end he served as Adjutant to Lieutenant General Charles William Ferdinand, the Prince of Brunswick (who also happened to be the brother-in-law of future British King George III). In the spring of 1775, soon after the start of the Revolutionary War in America, he resigned his Prussian Army commission, and came to New York, meeting and impressing many of the prominent officials and citizens of the time. He became great impressed himself at the patriotic ardor and passion the colonists had in the struggle for their freedom, and decided to join that cause. A few days after the signing of the Declaration of Independence in July 1776, he sailed to the Caribbean to procure military supplies to give to the struggling Continentals, evading capture by the British on his return voyage. After turning over the supplies in Norfolk, Virginia to help the rebellion, he was commissioned as an officer in the Continental Army in September 1776, and was sent to serve under General George Washington in New York City. After he arrived, it was decided by Washington to evacuate the city, and Captain Schott was given temporary command of the 3rd Continental Artillery battery, which he then ably led at the Battles of Harlem Heights and White Plains. In November 1776 he was assigned to raise a company of light infantry, which would be part of a battalion under the command of fellow former Prussian Army officer Nicholas Deitrich, Baron de Ottendorf. Known as "Ottendorf's Corps", Captain Schott recruited for it in German settlements around Philadelphia, and was commissioned Captain of the 3rd Company in December 1776. In the June 26, 1777 Battle of Short Hills, New Jersey, Ottendorf's Corps covered the retreating Continental forces as they were routed by the British, and Captain Schott was severely wounded and captured in that delaying action. Imprisoned in the Provost Prison in New York City, he was incarcerated with fellow officers, and, although stuck in cramped and uncomfortable conditions, he avoided the disease-ridden, hellish circumstances thousands of other American prisoners-of-war suffered under in the notorious British prison ships. Exchanged in December 1777, he discovered that "Ottendorf's Corp" had been battered and reduced by their heroic rear guard fight at Short Hills, and had now been consolidated into two independent companies of light infantry. Placed in command of the new battalion, it became designated as "Schott's Independent Corps", and was assigned to serve with Casmir Pulaski's Legion along the Delaware in Pennsylvania. During this time he petitioned Congress for a promotion he felt was well deserved; a petition he was eventually denied. Despite this, he was often referred to as "Major". In the summer of 1779 his command was ordered to participate in what became known as the Sullivan Expedition, a campaign against the British and loyalist Iroquois Nation Native Americans in upstate New York. After that was completed in September 1779, he and his men were assigned to garrison Fort Wyoming in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, a post he would serve until February 1781. At that time his "Corps" was almost in name only, having been reduced to himself, a captain, a lieutenant, and 26 men. Congress recognizing this, they were all signed to a veteran regiment under Colonel Moses Hazen known officially as the 2nd Canadian Regiment, but was better known as "Congress' Own" Regiment. With the unit, part of General Washington's Army, he participated to the march to Virginia to confront the forces of British General Cornwallis, took part in the October 1781 Siege of Yorktown, and witnessed the surrender of the British forces there. The fighting all but over, he resigned his commission in December 1781, and settled in Wilkes-Barre, where he would raise a family and eventually be appointed as Justice of the Peace. In 1804 he moved to Philadelphia, where he served as Inspector of Customs at the United States Custom House. He died in Philadelphia on 1829, and was buried in the Tabernacle Ground. His remains were removed to Laurel Hill Cemetery in November 1846.

Family Members


  • Created by: R
  • Added: 3 Apr 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial 67823098
  • Charles M Schott Jr
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Capt John Paul Schott (15 Oct 1744–18 Jul 1829), Find a Grave Memorial no. 67823098, citing Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by R (contributor 309) .