1057: Hannah White Arnett

Patriot During the American Revolution

Born: 15 January 1733, The Colony of New York (Present-day Bridgehampton, New York, United States of America)

Died: 10 January 1823 (or 1824, sources differ), Elizabeth, New Jersey, United States of America

Hannah is best remembered today for stopping a group of American men from deserting the cause and joining the British for “protection of life and property”. She overheard this conversation because her husband Isaac and the other men were discussing the idea in Hannah and Isaac’s home. According to legend, Hannah strode into the room and berated the men for daring to even consider it. Hannah also reportedly told her husband she would leave him if he took the offer. Isaac and the other men decided the cause of liberty was more important than their property, and continued to fight.

According to WikiTree, Hannah had at least ten children and was married twice. She is buried with her second husband and three of their children who died in infancy. Other than her single act of ultimate bravery, very little else is known of Hannah’s life. No images of her survive to modern day.

In 1890, Mary Smith Lockwood, one of the four founders of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution uncovered Hannah’s story and published it, bringing Hannah out of the shadows and into the history books. According to the same WikiTree profile referenced above (linked below) Hannah’s husband is recorded as a patriot in the DAR database, but it does not mention if Hannah is a recorded patriot.

In 1938, the Boudinot Chapter (New Jersey State Society) of the Daughters of the American Revolution erected a memorial plaque honoring American Revolutionary Soldiers in the First Presbyterian Church in Elizabeth, New Jersey—the same cemetery where Hannah White Arnett is buried.

Badges Earned:

Find a Grave Marked

Located In My Personal Library:

Unlikely Heroes: Ordinary Men and Women Whose Courage Won the Revolution by Ron Carter







"... have you chosen the part of men or traitors? ... God is on our side and every volley of our muskets is an echo of his voice ... we entered into this struggle with pure hearts and prayerful lips; we had counted the cost and were willing to pay the price, were it our heart's blood. And now ... because for a time the day is going against us, you would give up all ... you cowards!"

(Hannah’s words as reported in The Great Women of the American Revolution, published by the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution in 1975)