Fox Valley Chapter Patriot Profile

 

Private Eli Skinner 1760 - 1851

This page contains information on Eli Skinner, one of the soldiers who fought in the American Revolution and who are buried in one of the counties adjacent to the counties served by the Fox Valley Chapter. This page contains his biography and photographs of his grave.

Eli Skinner enlisted before his 15th birthday. He lived to be almost 91 years old and is buried in the Elk Grove Cemetery in Elk Grove, Illinois.

 

Biography of Patriot Eli Skinner

 

Eli Skinner was born in Colchester, Hartford County, Connecticut on July 30, 1760 the son of Aaron & Eunice (Taintor) Skinner, Sr. He was a fifth generation descendant of John Skinner who came from Braintree, Essex County England in a party of immigrants led by Rev. Hooker to Hartford, Connecticut in 1636. Eli's father, Captain Aaron Skinner died in 1766. Eli's older brother Aaron moved the large family to Shelburne, Hampshire County, Massachusetts when Eli was about 13 years of age.

On, or about, May 1, 1775, shortly after the British had marched on the towns of Lexington and Concord, at the age of 14 years and 9 months, in the town of Shelburne, Massachusetts, he enlisted for a term of eight months with the Massachusetts state troops. Due to his young age, he was employed as a Fifer. In a few days he and several others from the town that had enlisted set out for Cambridge, Massachusetts, near Boston. On arrival at Cambridge he was assigned to a company under the command of Captain Agrippa Wills in a regiment under the command of Colonel Asa Whitcomb and Lt. Colonel Whitney. Eli Skinner served his 8 month enlistment at Cambridge, and was discharged and returned to Shelburne.

In December 1776 a call was issued for troops to serve for a period of three months. Eli Skinner enlisted for this period, being mustered at Greenfield, Massachusetts on December 26, 1776 in a company commanded by Captain John Wells. From here they marched to Northampton, Massachusetts. Here, Captain Wellsí company was ordered to Fort Ticonderoga, for which they departed on December 27th by way of Chesterfield, Pittsfield, Greenbush, Albany, Fort Anne, Skeensboro and on to Fort Ticonderoga, arriving about January 6, 1777.

On reaching Fort Ticonderoga Captain Wellsí company was attached to Colonel Robinsonís regiment. Here Eli Skinner remained for his three month enlistment performing garrison duty until his three month term expired and he was again discharged and returned to his home in Shelburne.

Eli Skinner was married to Lucinda Nims on August 28, 1783. To this marriage were born nine children.

Eli Skinner remained in Shelburne until 1795 when he moved to Waitsfield, Washington County, Vermont. While in Washington County Vermont, Eli had a blacksmith shop. Within the next few years, he was joined by two of his brothers, Jared and Amasa. They were all farmers, and held many town offices and were respected citizens. In 1807 Eliís wife Lucinda died at Waitsfield, Vermont. The next year on January 7, 1808 he married for the second time in Royalton, Vermont to Eleanor Lovejoy, and a year later in 1809 a child was born to this marriage.

Eli was residing in Waitsfield, Vermont where on August 1, 1832 he applied for a pension. In March 1836 Eli Skinner applied to have his pension payments moved to Gouveneur, St. Lawrence County, New York, as three of his children had relocated there and he was dependant upon them for "comfort in his old age."

In 1848 he followed other members of his family to Cook County, Illinois, where Eli Skinner was a resident of Elk Grove, Cook County, Illinois. His homestead was located near the corners of present day Algonquin and Arlington Heights Roads. He is listed as one of the "first European settlers" of the area.

Eli Skinner died on July 2, 1851 at the age of 90 years, 11 months and 2 days. He is buried in the Elk Grove Cemetery in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. His grave was marked by the General Henry Dearborn Chapter of the DAR on August 25, 1931. On June 13, 1991, the Eli Skinner Chapter, NSDAR, rededicated his monument in honor of the 100th Anniversary of NSDAR and the 45th Anniversary of this Chapter.

Sources:
Eli Skinnerís Revolutionary War Pension Application File # S.3.1366
DAR Patriot Index, Volume III, page 2,465
Soldiers of the American Revolution Buried in Illinois, Illinois Genealogical Society, 1975, page 218
1790 Federal Census, Massachusetts, Hampshire County, Shelburne, page 122
1810 Federal Census, Vermont Chittenden County, Waitsfield, page 489
1820 Federal Census, Vermont, Washington County, Worcester Township, page 13
1830 Federal Census, Vermont Washington County, Waitsfield, page 301
1840 Federal Census, New York, St Lawrence County, Gouveneur, Pensioners List
Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, Compiled By the Secretary of the Commonwealth, Boston MA. 1896-1908. page 151
Shelburne, Massachusetts Vital Records
Yearbook, NSDAR, Eli Skinner Chapter, Arlington Heights, Illinois
http://www.elkgrove.org/heritage/new_page_1.htm

 

Photos from the Elk Grove Cemetery

Eli Skinner is buried near the entrance to the cemetery 15 feet from the fence by the parking lot. The Elk Grove Cemetery is a small cemetery which is bounded on the north by Interstate 90 and to the west by Arlington Heights Road. Patriot Aaron Miner is buried only 15 or 20 feet in front of Eli Skinner and closer to Arlington Heights Road.
Click for MapQuest map to cemetery. Click on thumbnail and enlarged photo will autoclose in 15 seconds.

 
Elk Grove Cemetery East Eli Skinners grave is visible in the distance between a tall tree on the left and the golden car on the right. Elk Grove Cemetery West This photo is taken 10 feet from Eli's grave looking west toward Arlington Heights Road.
Eli and Abigail Skinner The graves of Eli Skinner and Abigail, the wife of his son Joel. The two headstones seem to lean toward each other as if to gain support from the other. Eli Skinner Stone A close up of Eli Skinner's head stone with the marker of the General Henry Dearborn chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Captain Aaron Skinner Grave Tom Stewart of New York sent us the photo of Eli's father grave. Captain Aaron Skinner (1713-1766) is interred in the Old Burial Ground in Colchester, CT by his father John Skinner (1665 - 1740). John Skinner Grave Tom Stewart of New York also sent us the photo of Deacon John Skinner's grave. The grandfather of Eli, Deacon John Skinner (1665 - 1740), is interred just to the south of his son, Captain Aaron Skinner.