George Reid

Lt.-Col.George Reid, Reid’s N.H. Continental Battalion

George Reid was born in Londonderry, Province of New Hampshire in 1733. His parents James and Mary Reid were from Scotland. He and was a farmer by profession and married Mary Woodburn in 1765 who was noted for her skill in running their farm in George’s long service during the American Revolution. With news of the Battle of Lexington and Concord, George Reid was appointed a Captain and commanded a company of militia that marched to Boston, Massachusetts. His company would become part of the 1st New Hampshire Regiment in May 1775 and fight at the Battle of Bunker Hill. Captain George Reid was commissioned as a Captain in the 5th Continental Infantry (a temporary designation for the 1st New Hampshire) on January 1, 1776.

He was with the 1st New Hampshire during the Invasion of Canada and was later promoted to Major in the 1st New Hampshire on November 8, 1776. He fought at the Battle of Trenton and the Battle of Princeton. On April 2, 1777, he was further promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in the 1st New Hampshire. During the Continental Army’ encampment at Valley Forge, he appears with the staff of the 1st New Hampshire, Continental Line under the command of Colonel Joseph Cilley. He is further listed as “Present” in January 1778, “On Furlough” for February-March 1778, and again “Present” for April-June 1778. During this time he transferred to the 2nd New Hampshire, Continental Line on March 5, 1778. With the capture of Colonel Nathan Hale at the Battle of Hubbardton by the British Army, Lieutenant Colonel George Reid took command of the 2nd New Hampshire and led them during the rest of the Saratoga Campaign, the Battle of Monmouth and the Sullivan Expedition of 1779. With the consolidation of the three New Hampshire regiments in April 1783, Lieutenant Colonel Reid was appointed Lieutenant Colonel Commandant and Commander of the combined unit “The New Hampshire Regiment” until its disbandment on January 1, 1784.

After the war, George Reid was a appointed a Brigadier General in the New Hampshire militia. He led units that put down the Exeter Rebellion in 1786 at the then state capital Exeter, New Hampshire. The Rebellion was over the value and use of paper money issued by the government of New Hampshire. Later an angry crowd surrounded his house and threatened his life, but the old general faced them down alone and dispersed the mob without further incident. On October 22, 1791, George Reid was appointed Sheriff of Rockingham County, New Hampshire. George Reid died at the age of 83 on September 17, 1815.

Sources: Samuel Carroll Derby A List of The Revolutionary Soldiers of Dublin, N.H. (Columbus, Ohio: Press of Spahr & Glenn, 1901); George Franklyn Willey, ed., State Builders: An Illustrated Historical and Biographical Record of the State of New Hampshire (Manchester, N.H.: State Builders Publishing, 1903); Frederic Kidder, History of the First New Hampshire Regiment in the War of the Revolution (Albany, 1868), 110.