Ohio Genealogy Trails
Washington County,Ohio
Biographies
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Aaron Waldo Putnam
Aaron Waldo Putnam was a son of Col. Israel Putnam, and came with his father to Ohio in 1788, when he was about twenty years of age. He remained in charge of his farm in Belpre while his father was absent during the Indian War. He had two very thrilling adventures with Indians during this time which have already been narrated. After the close of the war he worked diligently in improving his farm which was one of the best in the valley. He introduced the best breeds of stock then known. He planted extensive orchards, grafted with scions of the best known varieties of fruit, brought from the east. In 1800 he built a very fine house which still stands and is occupied by his descendants. This house and also the house built by Capt. Jonathan Stone near the village are good examples of the best New England farm house of that period. When built the upper story was fitted up for a ball room, and in an inaugural ball Lady Blennerhassett from the Island led in some of the dances. The sturdy puritans of that time were conscientious and firm in their moral convictions, but believed also in recreations and when we consider the anxieties of those years when they knew that a murderous foe might be skulking in the neighboring forest, waiting for a night attack, we must commend their plans for such social amusements as would bind them close together and encourage them to persevere in their homes until danger from the Savages should pass away. This Putnam house, painted white, and standing on the margin of the Plain, or second bottom, and surrounded by orchards, became a conspicuous object to travelers on the "Belle Riviere" as there were at that time little besides wilderness and log cabins between Pittsburg and Cincinnati. [Source: A History of Belpre, Washington County, Ohio, by C. E. Dickinson, 1920, Transcribed by C. Anthony]

Colonel Israel Putnam
Colonel Israel Putnam, the elder, was plowing at Pomfret, Conn, with four oxen in April, 1775 when he heard of the battle of Lexington. He immediately left his oxen and mounting his favorite horse rode with all possible haste to Cambridge, Mass., where he did most important service, and was soon Commissioned a Major General. His son Israel soon raised a Company and served under his father until the arrival of General Washington as Commander-in-Chief. Israel continued in the service as aid to his Father. At the close of the war he became a raiser of blooded Stock some of which he brought with him to Ohio. He also brought a considerable number of valuable books which were the foundation of Belpre Farmers Library. He was an influential man and was a leader in the establishment of both education and religion. When absent from home his wife took charge of the family of six children. She was a woman of great spirit, and as firm a patriot as the general himself, hating, with all her soul and strength, the British oppressors of her country, who were technically called Redcoats, and loving with equal ardor the American soldiers, supplying them with food and clothing to the extent of her ability. In the winter of 1779when the patriot troups suffered so much from the want of warm garments, she had spun and woven in her own house, a number of blankets made from the finest wool in the flock, and sent on for their relief. Numerous pairs of stockings were also manufactured by her own hands and contributed in the same way. No one at this day knows, or can appreciate the value of the labors of American females in achieving our freedom. They wrought and suffered in silence, bearing many privations in common with their husbands and sons in the days which tried the patriotism of the colonies. She was a woman of elevated mind and great personal courage, worthy of the family to which she was allied. In the absence of her husband, when the vultures and hawks attacked the poultry, she could load and fire his light fowling piece at them, without dodging at the flash. [Source: A History of Belpre, Washington County, Ohio, by C. E. Dickinson, 1920, Transcribed by C. Anthony]
 


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