Nathaniel Hutchins

Capt. Nathaniel Hutchins, 1st Regiment N.H. Continental Line

Nathaniel Hutchins was born October 11, 1742 in Haverhill Massachusetts. He was the son of Jonathan & Mary (Emery) Hutchins. He married Mehitable Ordway February 21, 1764 in Concord, New Hampshire.

Nathaniel Hutchins began his military service long before the American Revolution. He had been one of Roger’s Rangers and had seen five years of hard service during the French and Indian War.

With the commencement of the American Revolution, Nathaniel Hutchins was appointed as a Second Lieutenant in John Moore’s company of Colonel John Stark’s 1st New Hampshire Regiment on May 23, 1775. He was transferred to Captain Henry Dearborn’s company in the expedition against Quebec in Colonel Benedict Arnold’s detachment. The thousand men marched to Newburyport, where they embarked on September 18, 1775. During the campaign, Second Lieutenant Hutchins and Captain Dearborn, as well as others, were captured at Quebec on December 31, 1775. Second Lieutenant Hutchins was exchanged and commissioned as a First Lieutenant in Pierse Long’s Regiment of New Hampshire Militia in May 1776. He was further promoted to Captain-Lieutenant in this Regiment on September 25, 1776.

Captain-Lieutenant Hutchins was transferred to the 1st New Hampshire Regiment, Continental Line and commissioned as a Captain-Lieutenant in that regiment on November 8, 1776. On April 2, 1777, Captain-Lieutenant Hutchins was promoted to Captain with duties as a Company Commander in the 1st New Hampshire now under the command of Colonel Joseph Cilley.

During the Continental Army’s encampment at Valley Forge, Captain Hutchins is listed as the Commander of the 5th Company of the 1st New Hampshire, Continental Line. He further appears listed as “On Furlough” for January-April 1778 and “On Duty” for May and June 1778. While at Valley Forge, General George Washington had written orders to Captain Hutchins on May 20, 1778 detailing:

“You are to proceed as far as Reading with the three Wagons under your Charge. Upon your arrival there, you will find a party to releive you and escort the Waggons to York Town. The canteens are to be delievered to the Qr. Mr. at Reading, from whence you are to march to Camp with the detachment under your command. I am etc.”

Records indicate absence for illness “at Hartford” from November 1778 to April 1779. Later, Captain Hutchins was on furlough from October 1779 to the end of the year. Captain Hutchins resigned his commission on January 1, 1781.

Captain Nathaniel Hutchins died January 10, 1832. His grave, located at the extreme northern end of the West Fryeburg cemetery along Rt. 113. The inscription reads: “Capt. Nathaniel Hutchins died 10 Jan. 1832, aged 89. He served in the French War 5 years, was Commanding Officer in the Revolutionary War, and was in the Battle of Bunker Hill in 1775.”

Sources: Francis B. Heitman, Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army, (Baltimore, 1914), 236; Frederic Kidder, History of the First New Hampshire Regiment in the War of the Revolution (Albany, 1868), 117; George Washington, (1931-44). The writings of George Washington from the original manuscript sources, 1745-1799. (Washington: U.S. Govt. Print. Off.), 428; Selected Wartime Service Records of Captain Nathaniel Hutchins.