John Boice
circ. 1862

Photo above: This is the only known photo of John Boice, found in the photo
collection of the Eli Boice family of North Egremont, Berkshire County, Massachussetts.

Photo above: "John Boice's signiture as it appeared in 1855."

This profile was extracted from military pension records and census records from Columbia and Greene Counties of New York .

John Boice and Catherine Jacoby

John Boice was born June 5, 1794 in or near Claverack, Columbia County, NY. The earliest record that we have beyond his baptism record shows that in 1814, he was drafted at the age of about 18 years old into the War of 1812, at Livingston, Columbia County, NY. From various War of 1812 military record, John Boice was also listed as being named John Bice, and John Boyce. This would lead to some later confusion when John was filing for his Bounty Land Warrants, and Military Pension, that we will discuss later in this narrative.

John Boice began his service in the town of Hudson under the command of Thomas Coopers NY. Militia, but Capt. Cooper took ill and dropped out of the war. John then fell into the ranks of Captain John Martin's NY Militia, commanded by Colonel Van Dalfsen of the Albany Agency, 12th regiment, where he served for about three months and was honorably discharged in December of that year, at Brooklyn Heights, NY. John Boice finished his military service at the rank of corporal.

From his military records it states that John Boice was married in February of 1818 in Taghkanic, Columbia County, NY., to Catherine Jacoby. Later that same year, John and Catherine bore a son and named him Henry P. Boice. The first confirmed census record that we have of John Boice's family appears in 1820, living in the town of Taghkanic, Columbia County, NY. (Click here for census image). That same year, John and Catherine bore a daughter and named her Marianne. Three years later in 1823, John and Catherine bore a second son, naming him Jacob William.

That same year in 1823, John, Catherine, and their three children moved to Greene County, NY. The next confirmed census record that we have of the John Boice family has them living in the town of Durham, Greene County, NY., in 1830. (Click here for census image). Between 1823 and 1830, John and Catherine bore a third son, Stephen, a fourth son, Peter Eli, and a fifth, John Jr. Between the years of 1823 and 1830 we are not sure how John made a living, but we suspect that he was farming as indicated in later census records.

Sometime before the 1840 Federal census, John and Catherine and their 6 children moved to the township of Cairo, Greene County, NY., just south of the township of Durham. (Click here for census image). The first recorded purchase of Property was in 1841; When John Boice purchased farmland from Stephen Webster in the area now known as Round Top. In 1850, John Boice filed for the first of two Bounty Land Warrants with the help of a Cairo Attorney named John Lennon, and was granted 40 acres for his service in the War of 1812. Interestingly enough, in a letter written to John Lennon in 1852, while petitioning for John Boice's 40 acre Land Warrant, it was discovered that it had mistakenly sent to an A.P. Blankson of Jamesville, Ohio. This was only part of the confusion that Boice and Lennon had to clear up before receiving the land grant.

In April of 1850, John Boice Purchased 50 acres of adjacent farmland for the sum of $250.00, from John Burkett. This land was not only bordered by his existing property, but also the properties of Stephen Webster, Henry Moore, George N. Stoddard, and Peter Fiero. (Click here for the Round Top Map location of this property). That same year, John Boice and his son Jacob, began to buy several pieces of property in that location. The deed records are difficult to read and we hope to give you a glimpse of what the family was building in the way of a farm and property, through the census agricultural records.

In 1850, the Greene County NY State Census recorded that John Boice had the following farm profile:

In 1852, John Boice's lawyer John Lennon, filed for the second of two Bounty Land Warrants. Mr. Lennon had to provide a sworn statement from Captain John Martin, John Boice's Captain during the War of 1812, In order to once again prove his service in the War. Captain Martin testified that John Boice had indeed served with him and that he honorably discharged John Boice at Brooklyn Heights NY., in December of 1814. Martin also mentioned that John Boice had been a near neighbor of his while living in Columbia County. In 1855, John Boice received his second Bounty Land Warrant for his service in the War of 1812. He was granted 120 acres. Deed records show that John Boice purchased adjacent property from Peter Fiero at this time. In 1855, the Greene County NY State Census recorded that John Boice and Jacob Boice, John's second oldest son, combined their farms and had the following farm profile:

Also right next door in 1855, the Greene County NY State Census recorded that Henry Boice, John Boice's oldest son owned property. The Greene County deed records that we have on file do not indicate that Henry Boice ever purchased property in this area. We are speculating that John Boice had given Henry this property. Henry Boice and wife Hellen Hart had the following farm profile:

Following the death of John Boice's wife Catherine Aug. 15, 1862, John Boice sold his farm in 1865 to his son, Jacob Boice and wife, Eliza Pitcher. The farm had grown considerably and the following is a profile of the farm as indicated in the 1865 census:

Sometime between 1865 and 1870, John Boice's son Jacob and family sold the farm at Round Top and moved to the northern town of Chatham, in neighboring Columbia County. We have also learned that at this time, John Boice's youngest brother Eli and family had moved from Taghkanic, Columbia County, also to the town of Chatham, as we find Eli and family living there on the 1870 census schedule.

In 1870, we find John Boice listed as "John Bice" living in Cairo, on the Greene County State census. He was living with his daughter Elisabeth, now married to Thomas Richards on this schedule and he was 74 years old at the time. Also at this time, John Boice once again requested the services of Lawyer John Lennon, as he filed for his War of 1812 pension. The pension commission denied the claim as the auditor reported that John Boice's name did not appear on the original muster rolls. John Lennon appealed to the commission by providing additional sworn testimonies of two soldiers, David Stickles and Thomas Coons, John Boice's Uncle, who had served with John Boice in the war. Mr. Lennon also petitioned that John Boice's name had been recorded in times past as John Boyce, and John Bice. John Boice's pension was finally approved July 22, 1872, for 8 dollars a month. Four years later on July 4th, 1876, John Boice died at the age of 80 years old.

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