Col John Hough

Col John Hough

Norwich, New London County, Connecticut, USA
Death 19 Nov 1832 (aged 74)
Unadilla, Otsego County, New York, USA
Burial Otsego County, New York, USA
Memorial ID 78684055 · View Source
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From the genealogical records of Robert Rolfe Phillips, a direct descendant:

Col John Hough (6th Gen) was the fifth son of David and Desire (Clark) Hough. He was born in Norwich, Connecticut on December 28, 1757. He was a carpenter and joiner by trade, a trade carried through all six generations of his family in the New World.

In January 1776, at the age of eighteen, he enlisted in Capt Mason’s Company in a Regiment of the Connecticut Line commanded by Col Wadsworth and went to Boston when there was an expected British invasion of that city. This was a two months enlistment. In June 1776, he again enlisted, this time for six months, in the Company commanded by Capt Clark, in the Regiment of the Connecticut Line commanded by Col Sage. There he served in the New York Campaign.

In the New York Campaign, the British General Howe had landed some 30,000 troops on Staten Island, New York in June 1776. Opposing Howe was George Washington with 17,000 Colonials on Long Island. The armies engaged on Long Island in August and the battle resulted in a disastrous defeat for the colonists. Washington barely saved his army from total defeat by retreating across the Delaware River into New Jersey, the last of his army crossing December 8, 1776. John Hough, completing his enlistment in December, was discharged, probably having had enough of the British. His brother Wade, serving in the same Company, was killed in the Battle of Long Island.

In the spring of 1780, John Hough again enlisted in the Service. This time for six months. He served in a Company commanded by Capt Miles or Web in a Regiment of the Connecticut Line Commanded by Col John Sumner. His unit served at West Point, New York, on the high bank of the Hudson River.

The British strategy throughout the war had been to split the colonies. First, they drove down from Canada through Lake Champlain, but were defeated at the battle of Saratoga. Then they drove south from Kingston, Ontario, through the Mohawk Valley toward Albany, but were defeated at the battle of Oriskany. At the same time, British General Howe would drive up the Hudson Valley from New York City to meet these thrusts from Canada, thus splitting off the colonies. West Point was the strong American position blocking Howe from moving north.

History records, as every student knows, that the American general, Benedict Arnold, commanding West Point, plotted with the British to surrender the fort. A British officer, Major John Andre, landed from a British warship on the Hudson River, under a flag of truce, to meet with General Arnold. There they plotted how Arnold would surrender West Point. Major Andre was given detailed plans of the fortress. Unfortunately for Andre, the ship that had landed him was forced down river by American gunfire, requiring him to return to New York by land. He attempted to slip through the American lines, dressed in civilian clothes given him by Arnold. When almost reaching New York, he was stopped by three Militiamen from Schoharie, NY who searched him, finding the evidence of Arnold’s treason in his boot.

John Hough’s Company held Major Andre in charge, pending a military courts martial, where he was found guilty and sentenced to be hanged. John Hough claims in his pension application that he witnessed the hanging. This took place on October 2, 1780. Hough claims that he and others felt strongly that Major Andre’s request to be shot rather than hanged should have been honored, believing this to be a death more worthy of a soldier.

The justice of John Andre’s execution has been much discussed by historians and was controversial at the time. He did act as a spy, but under orders and entirely contrary to his own convictions. George Washington’s apparent harshness in refusing the condemned man a soldier’s death has always been questioned.

Following the war, John Hough married Susannah Johnson on November 18, 1782 at Bozrah, Connecticut. Susannah was born September 22, 1757 at Bozrah, daughter of Ebenezar and Anna (Mills) Johnson. They settle in Bozrah where he was Justice of the Peace, a deacon of the church, Colonel of Militia, and a member of the state legislature.

Exactly when Col Hough came to New York is uncertain. Some accounts say 1816 or 1818. He claims, in his pension application for war service, that it was 1814. Mary Hubbard (Hough), his [grand] daughter, claims it was 1814. This is probably correct. Most of the children were, by this time, married and some preceded him to New York.

By 1814 we are fairly certain that John Hough had arrived in Unadilla, Otsego County, New York. He was 55 years old. He bought land, Wallace Patent - Lot 86 (71 acres) from H. Livingston for $600. The mortgage was discharged as recorded at the Otsego County courthouse in 1819 (Z-315).

In 1816, he completed a home located on what is currently New York State Route 7, between Sidney and Unadilla. The house still stands and is a landmark home in the area. It is a large brick home on the north side of the road about 100 yards from the Union Cemetery, where both he and his wife are buried. The bricks were made on the farm and many homes and chimneys in the area have bricks made on the Hough farm.

In 1831, son David Hough purchased the farm from his father for $1,000 (see Otsego County courthouse record UU 58). By this time, John Hough was 73 years old.

On October 2, 1832, Col John Hough appeared before the Judge of the Otsego County Court, declaring his service in the Revolution and applying for a pension under a Act of Congress on June 7, 1832. His Certificate of Pension was issued, but after his death on November 19, 1832, age 75.

The following obituary appeared in the Norwich, New York newspaper, the Anti-Mason Telegraph Vol 4, Number 36, dated Wednesday December 5, 1832:

“Died - At Unadilla, Otsego County, on the 19th after a protracted illness in which he exemplified the religion of Jesus Christ which had long professed, Col John Hough, a soldier of the Revolution, aged 75 years. Sensible to the last he took leave of his friends with full assurance of meeting his God in peace. Editors in New London County (Connecticut) are requested to insert the above.”

Family Members

Siblings Half Siblings


In memory of
Col. John Hough.
who died Nov. 19th.
aged 75 years.
[indecipherable - Soldier of the Revolutionary War?]

Gravesite Details The Union Cemetery (sometimes called the Foster Burial Grounds), is across the road from John and Susannah Hough's home. Their son. David Hough, along with his three wives are also buried there.



  • Maintained by: WendyRose
  • Originally Created by: JTF
  • Added: 18 Oct 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial 78684055
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Col John Hough (28 Dec 1757–19 Nov 1832), Find a Grave Memorial no. 78684055, citing Union Cemetery, Otsego County, New York, USA ; Maintained by WendyRose (contributor 48829749) .