Hessians Buried In Bedford County

   The men listed below came to the British colonies in North America from the duchies and principalities of Hesse-Kassel, Hesse-Hanau, Waldeck, Brunswick-Wolfenbuttel, Ansbach-Beyreuth and Anhalt-Zerbst as mercenary soldiers. Most of them were taken captive at Trenton, New Jersey in the early morning of 26 December 1776. Many more were captured during the siege of Yorktown in 1781.

   The so-called Hessians were originally hired by the British to perform service in Ireland. There were protests against that idea, and so the Germans were sent to America to augment the British forces.

   Captured Hessian soldiers were held at 'barracks' erected at Winchester, Virginia and York, Pennsylvania and also in Fort Frederick, Maryland.

   Descendants of Hessians taken captive often create family traditions that claim that their ancestor, after their capture, became model Patriots. They often claim that their ancestor escaped from their captivity, many during the week before the Treaty of Paris was signed. Those escaped prisoners invariably made their way to the Continental Army where George Washington, himself, accepted them into the Patriot forces ~ and who also quite often received a sword or musket directly from the General.

   In 99% of such stories, there exists no actual record or documentation to prove the escape and eventual conversion to Patriot. In regard to at least one of the men included in the list below, the family's 'proof' of their Hessian ancestor's conversion to Patriot was a supposed 'land grant' awarded to that Hessian ancestor for his war service. A simple check of the land records of Pennsylvania revealed that the man had purchased the land via a warrant ~ not a grant.

   The fact of the matter was that following the general release in 1783, many of the Hessians returned to their homes and families in the German regions. Some of them, though, chose to stay here and make their new homes in this land. Quite often they developed into good residents and neighbors.

Harmon Dick   ~   Colonel von Rahl's Regiment ~ Buried in the Lower Cemetary, Roaring Spring, Blair County.

Johann Kaspar Dilling    ~   Lieb Company, ErbPrinz (i.e. Crown Prince) Regiment ~ Buried in the Rebecca Furnace Farm Cemetery, Fredericksburg, North Woodbury Township, Blair County.

Arnold Haupt    ~   Hesse-Kassel Regiment von Donop ~ Buried in Saint Lukes Cemetery, Saxton, Liberty Township, Bedford County.

Friedrich Hentze    ~   Hesse-Hanau Fusilier Regiment ~ Buried in the Old Union Cemetery, Osterburg, King Township, Bedford County.

Ludwig Hirschheuser    ~   Landgraf Regiment ~ Buried in Friends Cove United Church of Christ Cemetery, Colerain Township, Bedford County.

Wilhelm Loos    ~   Feldjagerkorps Regiment ~ Buried in Kensinger-Daugherty Cemetery, Martinsburg, North Woodbury Township, Blair County.

Marcus Metzger   ~   Beyreuth Regiment ~ Buried in the Saint Luke's United Church of Christ Cemetery (Dry Ridge), Juniata Township, Bedford County.

Conrad Plessinger Sr.    ~   unknown regiment ~ Buried in Plessinger Family Farm Cemetery, Belfast Township, Fulton County.

Johannes Schmeiss    ~   Von Knyphausen Regiment ~ Burial site unknown, Shirley Township, Huntingdon County.

Frederick Wilhelm Singer   ~   Hesse-Hanau Fusilier Regiment ~ Buried in Newry Lutheran Cemetery, Newry, Blair Township, Blair County.

Johannes Ulrich Zeth   ~   Hessen-Hanau ErbPrinz Regiment ~ Buried in the Claysburg Union Cemetery, Claysburg, Greenfield Township, Blair County.