Joseph Bartram, Midshipman

Joseph Bartram. Joseph Bartram is likely the son of Captain Ebenezer Bartram (1731-1783) and Mary Burr (1731-1806) born about 1759, it is suggested on 28 September. Captain Ebenezer Bartram served as 1st Lieutenant under Captain Seth Harding on the brig Defence prior to the elder’s honorable discharge due to poor health on 23 October 1776. Joseph Bartram is likely the seaman who served under Harding on the same ship from 6 March to 15 November 1776 along with phifer Ryal Morehouse. Both would serve as midshipman aboard the Confederacy under Harding for her 1780-81 final cruise. He is certainly the Confederacy sailor Joseph Bertram of Connecticut taken from New York to Old Mill Prison in England on 23 August 1781. In a 20 November 1781 letter to Benjamin Franklin, Morehouse states he was midshipman aboard the Confederacy when captured, notes his distressing situation and encloses a set of bills drawn on Thaddeus Burr (1735-1801) of Fairfield, CT requesting remittance. Joseph Bartram of Connecticut is noted as Midshipman on the list of American prisoners in Mill Prison dated 8 March 1782 and endorsed by Henry Laurens. Captain Ebenezer Bartram’s son, Captain Joseph Bartram aged 28, was lost at sea on a return voyage from the West Indies in December of 1787 and is memorialized on his gravestone in Burial Hill Cemetery in Fairfield, CT.

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