Promotion Woes

I thought this might be an interesting short post for Veteran’s Day. My ancestral grandfather William Shepard, of Westfield, Massachusetts, retired a Colonel of the Revolutionary War.

When he first joined up to help further the cause of the Revolution he was a 2nd Lieutenant, as he had had prior experience in the military when it was British. Over the years during the war he was eventually promoted to Colonel, and in 1782 he was recommended for promotion to Brigadier General. It appears that they needed more Generals to run the brigades in the army.

Osgood Gilman
Whereas it appears that there are two Brigades of Troops of the Massachusetts Line now commanded by Colonels
therefore
Resolved that Col. John Greaton & Col. William Shepard the two Senior Colonels in the Massachusetts line of officers be and hereby are promoted to the Rank of Brigadier General in the Army of the United States.
Vote taken December 1782[?] Ayes 9, Nays 11. The Nays have it.

Unfortunately, William didn’t get that promotion. He retired from military service January 1, 1783, possibly because he felt it was a promotion he should have gotten, plus he had served his county for many years, it was time to go home.

However, nine months after he retired a Congressional Resolution dated September 30, 1783, was passed, it appears that his service was finally being recognized, as he was promoted to Brig. General, although without pay of that rank.

Source: Images from Fold3 website.

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