David Dayton’s fate in the rebellion and mayhem that followed

The investigation into the question of David Dayton’s (c.1739-1782) situation and sentiment during the British army’s occupation of Long Island is ongoing. We are also hoping we might discover some circumstance around his death.

This week Jim has been analyzing a document entitled A Payroll of Captn Daniel Griffings Company 2nd Regt of the New York Forces Commanded by Colonal James Clinton Esqr. Commencing at the time of Inlistment and Ending May the 31st 1776—Both Days encluded. The document lists roughly 85-90 Brookhaven men, including a few Daytons, one of whom is David Dayton, serving what appears to be 2 months, 28 days, beginning early March.

Jim’s preliminary finding indicates he is probably our David Dayton Senior, the same David who appears a month-and-a-half later in the July 1776 Census. The Census shows at least seven Dayton families living south of Middle Country Road—heads of households being Samuel, John, Willem, Bennet, another Samuel, Ebenezer and David. This places David at the edge of Coram, toward Patchogue.

The payroll is significant and is another important piece of the puzzle in the ongoing search to gain a better understanding of David and family during the turmoil on Long Island. David took the Oath of Allegiance in 1778 before Governor Tryon, but perhaps the latest record we have for David while still living is his name on the will of Jonathan Benjamin of Coram probably sometime around 1779-80 (statement corrected 2/12/17-Steve).

To be continued…

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