Isaiah /Jennings/: Birth: 1737 in Northampton County, Pennsylvania, USA. Death: 1792 in Lower Smithfield, Northampton County, Pennsylvania, USA
Note: Solomon Jennings was a colorful character in Pennsylvania's early history. His father may have been John Jennings. He was described as a man of giant stature and great strength. The following incident reported in the New York Weekly Journal, on September 9, 1734, is one of the earliest accounts of Solomon Jennings: "Pompton, Sept. 3. A few Days agoe an Indian arrived here from Pechachquelly, who give an Account that some Time since several Indians had seiz'd a Boy belonging to Solomon Jennings, supposed to be the noted Outlaw, whom they stript and whipt with Hickery Switches--Solomon being then on his Return homewards, and hearing the Boy lament, hasted to rescue him, and in his Way got a Stick of Wood somewhat like a Handspike, with which he assaulted the Indians, and struck one of them on the Forehead so that he split his Scull, and the Indian died on the Spot. Another of the Indians made at Solomon with a Knife, and job'd him in the Side under his Ribs, and another job'd a Knife into the upper Part of his Shoulder, upon which Solomon took to his Heels' for he perceived one of the Indians running towards his Gun; He had not [gone] far before the Indian shot at him running, the Bullet graz'd along his Neck and under Jaw, and took off the Skin all the Way. He escap'd, though very Narrowly."
In the Spring of 1736, William Allen, conveyed 200 acres to Solomon Jennings, in recompense for his services, two miles above Bethlehem. It was part of the Manor of Fermo, or Drylands. It required a silver shilling each year per hundred acres as quit-rent. On June 21, 1764, his land was sold to Jacob Geisinger for 1500 pounds and became part of the Geisinger Farm.
Jacob Geisinger, Jr., who knew Solomon Jenings, said Solomon was a man of great stature. He said Solomon could carry four three bushel bags of wheat from the threshing floor to the grainery. He put one on each shoulder, then one across the back and one across the front. He said Solomon's grave collapsed in 1841.
Solomon Jennings served as the surveyor of Freemore Manor in 1737 ["Colonial & Revolutionary Families of PA.' Thomas H. Bateman, Lewis Historical Publishing, New York, 1960]
On January 5, 1736/37, he was granted 200 acres of land above the west branch of the Delaware River (later called the Lehigh River) in Pennsylvania, in what was then, Northhampton County, according to the PA. State Archives Minute Book "K," pg. 84. His land was bordered by William Allen on the east and John Clauss and George Lawrence on the west.
On February 8, 1736/37, he was commended by the Provincial Council for the role he played in taking the long journey to serve as a deputy to the Sheriff of Lancaster County to help subdue the violences of Higginbotham and his party who had been rioting and raiding the homes of the Germans. Jennings was in charge of a detachment on the West side of the Susquehanna River. By March 1, 1736/37, Jennings finished serving as deputy [Minutes of the Provincial Council of PA., Vol. IV, pg. 153-155].
He was one of the three men chosen to participate in the 1736 "Walking Purchase," from the Indians, along the Delaware River in Pennsylvania. The settlers negotiated a land deal with the Indians on August 5, 1737. The deal called for walkers to leave Wrightstown, Bucks County and go Northwest for a day and a half, then they were to go east to the Delaware River. The walkers were to receive five pounds and 500 acres of land for their service. James Steel, Thomas Penn's representative, chose three of the fastest men in the province and told them to run, instead of walk, as the deal said. The three men chosen were: Edward Marshall, James Yates and Solomon Jennings. They started at sunrise on September 19, 1737 at the Wrightstown Meeting House and ended at 2 P.M. the next day on the north side of Pocano Mountain. The "walk"covered a distance of 68 miles. Edward Marshall was the only one to finish the race against time. Solomon Jennings stopped when he reached the Lehigh River. Yates collapsed, and died three days later. The Indians were upset with the way Penn deceived them. "For his part in the "walk" Solomon Jennings was granted several tracts of land, one covering the greater part of the site of Old Dansbury, now STroudsburgh, PA. He was Captain of an Ulster Scots company of militia. Solomon evidently did not make the entire "walk," for a notation states that he dropped out at Lehigh (were the Bethlehem steel plant now stands), and went to his home two miles above that point on the Lehigh River, which was later known as "Geisinger Farm." He died on this plantation on the Lehigh February 17, 1757." [A Genealogy of the Quick Family in America, p.32].
In 1736-37, Solomon Jennings owned 200 acres above the West Branch of the Delaware River [PA. Archives, 3rd Series, Vol, pg. 84].
In June 1748, he was one of the inhabitants of Dansbury who petitioned for a new road.
On December 4, 1750, 278 acres of land was surveyed for this Solomon Jennings in Smithfield, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.
Solomon could not read or write and always made his signature with a mark. That did not stop him from serving in elected office. He was elected a Commissioner for Northhampotn County in 1755.
Solomon's funeral was cunducted by Rev. Abraham Reinke, on February 17, 1757, with a large number in attendance.
His ancestry has not been established. He may be related to the John Jennings, son of Ann (who later married John Lathum). They arrived in Philadelphia on August 31, 1685, in the "Rebecca" of Liverpoole, commanded by James Skinner. ["Penn's Colony Vol. 1 Passengers & Ships, " Walter Lee Shepherd, pg. 165]
A John Jennings of Barbados, an apothecary, bought land with John JOnes on the southwest corner of Mulberry and 2nd Arch. (On March 4, 1686, Jennings bought the land from Jones) ["Penn's Colony Vol. 1 Passengers & Ships," Walter Lee Shepherd, pg. 120]. That John Jennings wrote his will on December 10, 1688.
The Plot Map for land in Northhampton County, PA., known as the "Drylands-Trach "A," along the West Branch of the Delaware River, where Solomon Jennings received his 220 acres, bears this inscription, "Note "A" This tract was surveyed to John Jennings in payment for his loses and services in going to Wyoming. John Jennings conveyed his interests to Lambert Cadwalder."
David Quick (son of Benjamin Quick) born February 22, 1763, in New Jersey, married Anna Jennings, born in 1770, who was supposed to be a granddaughter of this Solomon Jennings. She was part Indian. They moved to Ohio.
Solomon's will was dated June 4, 1755, and was probated March 8, 1757, at Northampton County, Pennsylvania [Wills 1752-1802 Northhampton Co. No. 319, also see 144, 432]. The will said he was a yeoman from Salisbury. When he died, his estate amounted to 1,413 pounds. He was buried on his farm. In his will, he mentioned his wife; John, as his oldes son; Rachel, Elizabeth; Isaiah; Susanna; Ezekiel (a minor); and Judith (a minor). The executors were his son John and son-in-law Nicholas Scull.
The part of Northampton County, where Solomon Jennings lived, later became Monroe County.
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