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Oliver Ellsworth

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Revolutionary War-dated authorization for payment to seven-year veteran

who saw action in several campaigns in the war, including

 the Battles of Long Island, Monmouth, and Jamestown

and the final siege of Yorktown

Oliver Ellsworth, 1745–1807.  Drafter of the United States Constitution; 3rd Chief Justice of the United States, 1796–1800.  Autograph Document Signed, O Ellsworth, one page (recto and verso), 7½” x 6”, Hartford, [Connecticut], May 18, 1778.

This war-dated pay warrant, entirely in the hand of Ellsworth, has an outstanding Revolutionary War connection.  As a member of the Connecticut Committee of the Pay Table, Ellsworth authorizes payment of £5, 12 sh., to Asa Lamb, “being the balance of his acct.”  Silas Lamb has signed on the back as “prin” to acknowledge receipt of the payment.

Asa Lamb (1761–1839) was a seven-year veteran of the Revolutionary War.  He served in several important campaigns, including the Battles of Long Island, Mud Island, Monmouth, and Jamestown and the final siege of Yorktown.

As a teenager in March 1776, Lamb took his father’s place for duty and enlisted as a private in Capt. Isaac Gallup’s company in the 10th Continental Regiment, which had been the 6th Connecticut Regiment, under the command of Col. Samuel Holden Parson.  He served until December 9, 1776, when he reenlisted as a private in Capt. John McGregier’s company in the 4th Connecticut Regiment commanded by Col. John Durkee.  He reenlisted again around June 1, 1781, in Capt. Lemnel Clift’s company in the 4th Connecticut Regiment.  He was discharged December 9, 1783.

This piece is perfect for framing.  It has a beautiful signature by Ellsworth.  There are intersecting vertical and horizontal folds, and notes on the reverse bleed through slightly to the front, not affecting the signature.  The piece is in fine condition.


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