Monday, May 10, 2010

Martin & Christiana Gatter Of New Haven Ct. 1779.

This is the story of the Gatter family when the British invaded New Haven. This is just one story there are hundreds more.

Martin Gatter of lawful! age testifies and says that he was detained in New Haven when the British enemy entered the town on the 5th inst., by reason of sickness, and was without arms of any kind, peacably in his own house, when a number of the British soldiers entered his house and with great fury in their countenances called him an old damned rebbel scoundrel and booger and swore they would instantly kill him, that he beged they would not abuse him saying he had not done them any harm and had no arms in his house and was peaceable about his own business, but four of them came at him with their bayonets pricked him in sundry places cut him on the head struck him on the head with a great club knocked him down and told him to go out of the house insulting him with the vilest language &c. that he got out all besmeared with blood, that they and others that came in kept plundering his house and abusing his wife, that he was much weakened by the loss of blood and other abuses, but wore out the day; and at night he fastned his house and went to bed with his wife and two small children, but about half after 2 o'clock in the morning his house was broke open by two of the enemy. The deponent further says he had suffered so much by them the day before, that he got out the back of his house and hid in a cornfield till morning, when he returned to his house and found his wife and children alive but his wife had been most horribly abused.

Martin Gatter. New Haven July 26th, 1779

Christiana Gatter of lawful age testifies and says that she was at home in New Haven when the town was sacked and plundered by the British enemy, that a number of the enemy entered their house and much abused her husband, after which she went into the garden about 4 o'clock afternoon, when a soldier met her from a neighbors garden, presented his gun at her, bid her stand, and came up to her, told her to lay down. I told him we had better go into the house. We went in, my husband being there. He would have me go into the cellar. I told him that place was not good. He asked me to go up stairs. I pretended to comply, went into the entry and told him we had better go out the fore door into the green where I flattered him along till we came in sight of Mr. Chandler who stood out before his house, to whom I called for help and he rescued me, after which at night I went home to see after my husband and children. We fastened the house and went to bed. Some time in the night was awakened by some of them breaking into the house. My husband made his escape through the back door, and two of them laid hold of me and threw me on the bed, and swore if I made any noise or resistance they would kill me in a moment. I was obliged to submit, one of them had his will of me whilst the other kept the door, afterward the other had his will of me whilst the other kept the door. It was about this time they was called to parade and they left me.
Christiana Gatter.
New Haven July 26th, 1779.

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