Rash's Surname Index

Notes for John HANNUM

From http://www.hannums.com/chestercohannums/chestercohannums.html

He was an active Whig, and an influential citizen of Chester County from the days of the Revolution to the day of his death. Dec. 20, 1774, a general meeting of the citizens of Chester County was convened at the court-house, in the borough of Chester, to devise measures for the protection of their rights as freemen, in pursuance of the recommendation of the Continental Congress. A committee of seventy were appointed accordingly, of whom John Hannum was one. From that time he was a zealous participant in all the movements which led to and resulted in the independence of the United States. Most of the time he was a magistrate, and was often employed by the civil authorities in important confidential business, as well as holding a commission in the militia. At the time the British army invaded Chester County, on its way from the Head of Elk to Philadelphia, Col. Hannum resided at the "Centre House" (now in the village of Marshallton), between the two main branches of the river Brandywine, and the night of Sept. 10, 1777, was passed by Thomas Cheyney, Esq., a relative of Col. Hannum, at the house of the latter. (At that perilous crisis it was not deemed prudent for Squire Cheyney to lodge at his own house.) Next morning being Brandywine battle day the two set out together to visit the American army, known to be then in the vicinity of Chads Ford. As they descended towards the west branch of the stream, near Trimble's mill and ford, they discovered coming down from the hills opposite a very numerous body of soldiers, evidently British. This very much surprised Messers. Hannum and Cheyney, and they moved round the adjacent hills, in order to observe the direction taken by the enemy. Finding them going toward Jefferis' Ford, on the east branch, and believing them to constitute the chief portion of the English army, our friends resolved at once, and at some personal risk, to proceed with the intelligence to Gen. Washington. Squire Cheyney, being mounted on a fleet hackney, pushed down the stream from Jefferis' Ford until he found the American commander-in-chief and had the interview mentioned on page 71.

Col. Hannum remained with the army during that unfortunate day, and in its retreat, and continued with his old friend, Gen. Wayne, until the night of the Paoli massacre. After that cruel affair Col. Hannum returned to his residence, where, a short time afterwards, he was captured one night in his bed by a party of British light-horse, who had been piloted hither by a Tory neighbor, and he was carried a prisoner to Philadelphia. The party robbed Mrs. Hannum of her gold watch, and took everything of value in the house that they could carry away. The colonel subsequently made his escape, and was soon actively aiding the great cause in which he had embarked.

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