Categories: Litchfield, Connecticut | American Revolution | American Revolution Veterans | US Continental Army Veterans | American Revolution Generals | Battle of Ticonderoga | Greenmount Cemetery, Burlington, Vermont | Green Mountain Boys | American Founding Fathers | NSDAR Patriot Ancestors | Collaborative Profile of the Week | This Day In History January 10 | This Day In History February 12 | 1776 Project.
Ethan Allen (1738-1789) was "a farmer, businessman, land speculator, philosopher, writer, and American Revolutionary War patriot, hero, and politician." He is best known for his bold capture of Fort Ticonderoga and his efforts towards Vermont statehood.
Ethan was born in Litchfield County, Connecticut, in the Northwest corner of the state, which was still a frontier at the time. He was born on January 21, 1738 (modern Gregorian calendar) though the date is officially recorded as January 10, 1737 using the old Julian system. The family moved to nearby Cornwall. Ethan, showing an early interest in learning was sent to be instructed by a nearby minister, in preparation for attending Yale College. Unfortunately the death of his father, in 1755, forced Allen's return home, to help care for the family.
Ethan became part owner of an iron works near Salisbury, Connecticut, and married his first wife Mary Brownson in 1762.
During the years leading up to the formation of the "Green Mountain Boys," Ethan settled in Sheffield, Massachusetts and he became interested in the land belonging to the New Hampshire Grants.
The Green Mountain Boys
What do you suppose happens when two people/s claim the same land? Future Vermonters found out the hard way. In the middle 1700s Benning Wentworth, Governor of New Hampshire, granted lands west of the Connecticut River to citizens of New Hampshire, who needed to accommodate a growing population. These were called the New Hampshire Grants.  The colony of New York believed that it owned this same land west of the Connecticut River and King George III declared it so. The Lieutenant Governor of New York, Cadwallader Colden, also sold land to settlers. These people were called Yorkers.
As Yorkers began to encroach on land already occupied by The New Hampshire Grants, Ethan Allen his brother Ira Allen and cousins Seth Warner and Remember Baker formed a militia for the resistance of New York’ authority over their land. It certainly was not fair that they should have to pay for their land a second time. The Green Mountain Boys, as they were called, used intimidation, and vigilante tactics to drive out the Yorkers.
During the revolution the Green Mountain Boys became a legitimate part of the continental army and were instrumental in the first expeditions of the war to Fort Ticonderoga and Crown Point.
Capture of Fort Ticonderoga
Early in the fight against the British, Connecticut formed a plan to take Fort Ticonderoga and it’s cannon as a strategic point of defense against British Invasion through the waters of Lake Champlain. The men from Connecticut headed to Bennington, to secure the cooperation and help of Ethan Allen. In Bennington, it was found that Ethan Allen was already planning an expedition with the same ends. Ethan Allen was chosen leader, with Colonel James Easton second and Seth Warner as third in command. In a short time the Green Mountain Boys and others were ready. At Castleton, the group broke up to accomplish different tasks. Captain Samuel Herrick and about thirty men went south to Skenesborough (Whitehall) at the head of Lake Champlain to seize the boats and supplies owned by Major Philip Skene. Captain Drylas went to Panton to likewise seize boats. The main body of men were to proceed to Shoreham opposite Fort Ticonderoga. Great minds think alike and the Massachusetts safety committee had also formed a plan to take Ticonderoga and sent Colonel Benedict Arnold, to lead an expedition. They joined forces. The hoped for boats had not appeared and only a small company had crossed the lake as the day began May 10, 1775. Arnold fearing that the force would be spotted, putting an end to the element of surprise, attacked the fort immediately with about eighty men. The element of surprise was so great on this occaision that Allen had little trouble capturing and asking for the surrender of the fort. The military spoils acquired were one hundred twenty pieces of iron cannon, fifty swivels, ten tons of musket balls, three cart loads of flints, thirty carriages, shells, and other stores.
On the 12th of May, Crown Point another strategic fortress was taken without bloodshed by a force led by Seth Warner. A warship, a corvette, was also stationed on the lake, which was swiftly captured securing Lake Champlain for the revolutionary forces. 
Capture of Ethan Allen
Unfortunately, Ethan's next bold, move a "surprise" attack on Montreal, did not fare so well. His group and that of Major John Brown were to attack Montreal from two sides. Allen showed up, Brown did not. A spy was captured and escaped to inform General Guy Carleton of the presence of Allen and his small band, who were routed by Carleton's troops. Sllen was captured 24 Sept. 1775. He spent the next three years a prisoner of war and was released 6 May 1778 in a prisoner exchange.
In 1777, Vermont had claimed it's independance, and in Sept 1778, Ethan presented Vermonts claim for statehood to the Congress in Philadelphia. Since New York was still claiming the area, Vermont was not accepted.
His wife Mary died in Feb 1783 and a year later he married Fanny, and moved to Burlington Vermont.
Besides, his service in the army and his political maneuvering, Allen used his pen, frequently authoring pamphlets, plus he wrote two major works, one "Reason, the Oly Oracle of Man: Or A Compinduous System of Natual Religion" was "a typical Allen polemic, but its target was religious, not political. Specifically targeted against Christianity, it was an unbridled attack against the Bible, established churches, and the powers of the priesthood." It was also a total failure.
Another literary work was A narrative of Col. Ethan Allen's captivity: from the time of his being taken by the British, near Montreal, on the 25th day of September, in the year 1775, to the time of his exchange, on the 6th day of May, 1778. Published in 1779, this was a best seller.
Ethan Allen's Basic Data
Ethan Allen, son of Joseph Allen and Mary (Baker) Allen, was born 10 Jan 1737/8, in Litchfield, Connecticut. That is 21 Jan 1738 in the Gregorian Calendar.
Ethan married (2) 9 Feb 1784, in Westminister, Vermont, Frances Montresor Brush Buchanan, born 4 Apr 1770, New York, New York, died 1834.
Ethan died 12 Feb 1789, Burlington, Vermont, buried at Greenmount Cemetery, Burlington, Vermont. Children by Mary Brownson:
- i Loraine Allen born 21 Apr 1763, died 1783, Sunderland, Vermont
- ii Joseph E. Allen born 25 Nov 1765, died 1777 in Sheffield, Massachusetts
- iii Lucy Caroline Allen born 1768; m. 26 May 1789, Judge Samuel Hitchcock of Burlington.
- iv Mary Ann (Maryan) Allen born 1772, died Oct 1790, Burlington, VT.
- v Pamelia Allen born 1779. She m. Eleazer W. Keyes of Burlington, where she died before 1810 without children.
Children by Frances Montresor:
- vi Frances (Fanny) Margaret Allen born 13 Nov 1784, Arlington, Vermont, died 10 September 1819, Montreal, Canada; she was the first in the American colony to convert to Catholicism, and became a nun.
- vii. Hannibal Montresor Allen born 24 Nov 1787, Sunderland, Vermont, married 1808, Agnes Bodine Low, born 1788, died 1863. Hannibal died 1813, Norfolk, VA.
- viii Ethan Voltare (Alphonso) Allen born 24 Oct 1789, in Burlington.
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 Wikipedia biography: Ethan Allen
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Ethan Allen Homestead Museum. "Ethan Allen Timeline"
- ↑ “The New Hampshire Grants” Vermont History Explorer. Vermont Historical Society
- ↑ “The New York Patents” Vermont History Explorer. Vermont Historical Society
- ↑ allthingsliberty.com Procknow, Gene. “Seth Warner or Ethan Allen: Who Led the Green Mountain Boys?” ‘’Journal of the American Revolution.’’
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 De Puy, Henry Walter. Ethan Allen and the Green-Mountain Heroes of'76. With a sketch of the early history of Vermont. Boston: Dayton&Wentworth, 1853 pp. 204-210.
- ↑ Allen, Ethan. Reason, the Only Oracle of Man: Or, A Compenduous System of Natural Religion Boston: JP Mendum, 1854.
- ↑ Allen, Ethan. A narrative of Col. Ethan Allen's captivity: from the time of his being taken by the British, near Montreal, on the 25th day of September, in the year 1775, to the time of his exchange, on the 6th day of May, 1778 Thomas & Thomas. From the press of Charter and Hale, 1807.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 White, Lorraine Cook, ed. The Barbour Collection of Connecticut Town Vital Records. Vol. 1-55. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1994-2002.Litchfield p. 3
- ↑ Bailey, Frederic W. Early Connecticut Marriages as Found on Ancient Church Records Prior to 1800. Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1997. Book 1 p. 97. At Ancestry.com
- ↑ 11.00 11.01 11.02 11.03 11.04 11.05 11.06 11.07 11.08 11.09 11.10 Allen, Orrin Peer, b. 1833. The Allen Memorial: Descendants of Samuel Allen of Windsor, Conn., 1640-1907. [Salem, Mass.: Higginson Book Co., 1907. children pp 49, 50
- ↑ "Vermont Vital Records, 1760-1954," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1-10015-2784-96?cc=1784223 : 22 May 2014), 004542937 > image 2253 of 3896; State Capitol Building, Montpelier.
- ↑ Death and Burial Source, "Vermont Vital Records, 1760-1954," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XFFL-MMV : 6 December 2014), Ethan Allen, 12 Feb 1789, Death; State Capitol Building, Montpelier; FHL microfilm 27,459.
- Goodrich, John E., Compiler, Editor; A Member of the Vermont Historical Society. The State of Vermont, Rolls of the Soldiers in the Revolutionary War, 1775 to 1783. Published by Authority of the Legislature.
- A List of the Field Officers, Captains and Part of the Lieutenants of the RegimentPublisher: Vermont Historical Society, Rutland, Vermont: The Tuttle Company, 1904, 814: "A List of the Field Officers, Captains and part of the Lieutenants of the Regiment of Green Mountain Boys, consisting of seven companies. July 4, 1775, Colonel Allen's royal list of loyal Officers: Ethan Allen, Field Officer.
- Joslin, Joseph & Frisbie, Barnes & Ruggles, Frederick. A History of the Town of Poultney, Vermont, from its Settlement to the Year 1875 (Journal Printing Office, Pultney, VT, 1875) Page 20: at a meeting in Canaan, CT, he was chosen Proprietors' Clerk, 28 Feb 1772.
- Daughters of the American Revolution, DAR Genealogical Research Databases, database online, (http://www.dar.org/ : accessed July 26, 2016), "Record of Ethan Allen ", Ancestor # A001535.
- "British Fascination with Ethan Allen", Journal of the American Revolution, online, accessed July, 30, 2016
- Ethan Allen Homestead Museum Who Was Ethan Allen?
- Biography.com Ethan Allen Biography.
- Allen, Ethan. Reason, the Only Oracle of Man: Or, A Compenduous System of Natural Religion Boston: JP Mendum, 1854. A book by Ethan Allen
- Allen, Ethan. A narrative of Col. Ethan Allen's captivity: from the time of his being taken by the British, near Montreal, on the 25th day of September, in the year 1775, to the time of his exchange, on the 6th day of May, 1778 Thomas & Thomas. From the press of Charter and Hale, 1807.
- DE PUY, Henry Walter. Ethan Allen and the Green-Mountain Heroes of'76. With a sketch of the early history of Vermont. Boston: Dayton&Wentworth, 1853.
- Kilbourne, Payne. Sketches and Chronicles of the Town of Litchfield, Connecticut (Case, Lockwood and Co., Hartford, 1859) Page 135-41
- WikiData: Q552007 Wikidata Information Reasonator enwiki Ancestors (about wikidata)
Searching for someone else?
Do you have a GEDCOM? Login to have every name in your tree searched. It's free (like everything on WikiTree).
- Can You Help with American Folk Hero Ethan Allen? Collaborative Profile of the Week Jul 25, 2016.
- Am I the 11th Great Grandaughter of Ethan Allen? Jan 22, 2014.
- cousins of Ethan Allen. Mar 12, 2013.
No known carriers of Ethan's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.
Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Family Tree DNA.
- Login to edit this profile.
- Private Messages: Contact the Profile Managers privately: Katherine Patterson, Sarah Dittmann, and Emilie Roberts. (Best when privacy is an issue.)
- Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages specifically directed to those editing this profile. Limit 20 per day.)
- Public Q&A: These will appear above and in the Genealogist-to-Genealogist (G2G) Forum. (Best for anything directed to the wider genealogy community.)
On 31 Jul 2016 at 08:55 GMT Vicky (Freeth) Majewski wrote:
On 25 Jul 2016 at 00:22 GMT Anne B wrote:
On 9 Aug 2015 at 02:16 GMT Anne B wrote:
On 14 Dec 2014 at 21:05 GMT Keith Hathaway wrote:
On 20 Oct 2011 at 17:44 GMT Jerin Halstead wrote:
On 4 May 2011 at 05:58 GMT Karen Blake wrote:
On 8 Feb 2011 at 16:24 GMT Mary DeFrancisco wrote:
On 13 Nov 2010 at 19:36 GMT Matt Allen wrote:
Ethan is 15 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 17 degrees from Domingo Ghirardelli, 26 degrees from Ronel Olivier, 27 degrees from Rosa Parks and 12 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II of the Commonwealth Realms on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.