John Wait
Gen. Benjamin Wait


Family Links

1. Lois Gilbert

Gen. Benjamin Wait 115

  • Born: 13 Feb 1736, Sudsbury, MA 115,3428
  • Marriage (1): Lois Gilbert
  • Died: 28 Jun 1822, Waitsfield, Chittenden, Vermont at age 86 108,115
  • Buried: 30 Jun 1822, Waitsfield, Chittenden, Vermont 108,115

  Noted events in his life were:

• Waitsfield, VT. 3429 The town of Waitsfield was created by Vermont charter on February 25, 1782. It was granted to militia Generals Benjamin Wait and Roger Enos and others, and named for Wait.

Benjamin Wait, whose name was given to the town, had
early marked this valley for his own, but other duties claimed
him for the time and not until the spring of q89 did he come
hither, with his children and his sons' children, to establish a
home in the meadows north of the present village. He was a
veteran of two wars, almost, it might be said, a soldier by
profession, for the French War, the conflict of the Green
Mountain Boys against New York, the Revolution, and, after
its close, the active command of forces engaged in the internal
conflict that culminated in Shay's Rebellion, had taken more
than twenty of the best years of his life. He was a well-to-do
and highly respected citizen of the then populous and important
town of Windsor. He had for seven years been High Sheriff
of Cumberland and Windsor Counties, and had but just resigned
the highest military office in the gift of the State that he might
free himself for his fresh struggle with the wilderness. Hehad
sat in the convention that adopted the constitution of the new
state and had taken high rank among the founders of the little
republic that was still knocking ineffectually at the doors of the

• Military career, 1755-1783. 3430 The military experiences of Benjamin Wait began with the
campaign of 1755, for which he had enlisted at the age of 13. Shivering in the chill v,iuds of winter and suffering
the pangs of hunger, young Wait saw more than half his regiment die of the attacks of these twin enemies. Reinforcements were started in the spring, but erc they reached the Great Carrying Place between the heE.dwaters of the Hudson and Ontario, the French, under Montcalm, had descended on Oswego and had taken it with its garrison of some fourteen hundred men, A scene of drunkenness and plunder followed, and several prisoners were butchered by the Indian allies. More would have fallen but for the efforts of Montcalm. Here, or in some preliminary skirmish (on this point only there seems to be some doubt) young Wait was taken prisoner and by his Indian captors compelled to run the gauntlet. Other prisoners had received hard usage, so when his turn came, belieVing, as stated by a grandson who heard him tell the story, that "spunk would be a good antidote for savage barbarity," he (still in the words of his grandson,) "ran through with clenched fists as vicious as a wild bull, knocking them from one side to the other, and when they see him approaching they had little· time enough to take care of themselves." Rescued from the Indians by a Frenchwoman who hId him under a cask in her cellar, he was turned over to the French, and held some months a prisoner of war. Later, he was sent with other prisoners to France, only to be rescued by a British man-of~war and brought back to his native shores. Immediately he enlisted under his brother Joseph, then captain of a company of Rogers' Rangers.

It occasions no surprise that a man of these characteristics
was prompt to volunteer upon the outbreak of the Revolution. In October, I776, was he commissioned, and then received appointment as Captain of the first company of J oab Hoisington's Rangers raised for service on the northern frontiers with headquarters at Newbury. These troops performed a varied and somewhat uncertain service, sometimes acting under and sometimes in open defiance of the New York authorities. Hoisington died early in 1777, and Wait, with rank of captain, took command of the battalion. In late September 1777, Col. Brown and Major Wait, with some $00 men, were ordered to the vicinity of Ticonderoga to cut Burgoyne's lines of communication~a service so efficiently -performed that Wait was commended for "spiritt~d conduct" by the Council. In 1780
with rank of major, he was in the field at the time of the attacks
on Royalton and Newbury, and in January, q8r, he was. commissioned Major of the First Regiment of Vermont Militia and immediately detailed for service on the frontiers.

Benjamin married Lois Gilbert, daughter of Thomas Gilbert and Sarah. (Lois Gilbert was born on 18 Mar 1748 in Brookline, MA.,115 died on 3 Apr 1804 in Waitsfield, Chittenden, Vermont 115 and was buried on 5 Apr 1804 in Waitsfield, Chittenden, Vermont 3427.)

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