Military Monday – Theodore Shackford, (1773-1809) signed the 1776 Association Test (Blog 395)

In April 1776 the Colony of New Hampshire Committee of Safety required all men over the age of twenty-one to pledge their allegiance and sign a document called the Association Test stating that they supported the cause of independence.  Each town submitted a list of signatures and a list of those who refused to sign and sent the lists to the Committee of Safety for the State of New Hampshire.

In 1881, the State of New Hampshire began hiring historians to publish important portions of documents pertaining to the American Revolution and share them with each city and town in the state, the public libraries, and the New Hampshire Historical Society. Fortunately today this allows us to search these documents for the word Shackford and from the State Papers published in 1910, we see that two Shackfords in the city of Chester, New Hampshire, signed the Association Test – Theodore Shackford who would have been 43 years old and his John Shackford, Jr  who we believe is his brother.  Their father, John was still living but resided in Andover, Massachusetts.

Theodore’s two daughters Sarah and Susannah had married David Richardson and Nathan Knowles respectively, both of whom had also signed the document.

theodore-shackford-association-batchellor-albert-stillman-itt-d-editor-of-state-papers-miscellaneous-revolutionary-documents-of-new-hampshire-including-the-association-test-vol-30-state-papeASSOCIATION TEST
April 12th, 1776
In Order to carry the underwritten RESOLVE of the Hon’ble Continental CONGRESS into Execution, You are requested to desire all Males above Twenty One Years of Age (Lunaticks, Idiots,
and Negroes excepted) to sign the DECLARATION on this
Paper; and when so done, to make Return hereof, together with the Name or Names of all who shall refuse to sign the same, to the GENERAL-ASSEMBLY, or Committee of Safety of this Colony.
M. Weare, Chairman.
In CONGRESS, March 14th, 1776
Resolve, That it be recommended to the several Assemblies,
Conventions, and Councils, or Committees of Safety of the United
Colonies, and Councils, or Committees of Safety of the United
Colonies, immediately to cause all Persons to be disarmed within
their Respective Colonies, who are notoriously disaffected to the
Cause of AMERICA, Or who have not associated, and refuse to
associate, to defend by ARMS, the United Colonies, against the
Hostile Attempts of the British Fleets and Armies.
(COPY) Extract from the Minutes.
Charles Thompson, Sec’ry.
In Consequence of the above Resolution, of the Hon. Continental
CONGRESS, and to show our Determination in joining our Amer-
ican Brethern, in defending the Lives, Liberties, and Properties of
the Inhabitants of the UNITED COLONIES.
WE, the Subscribers, do hereby solemnly engage, and promise,
that we will, to the utmost of our Power, at the Risque of our
Lives and Fortunes, with ARMS, oppose the Hostile Proceedings
of the British Fleets, and Armies, against the United American


David Richardson [husband of Theodore’s daughter Sarah]

Nathan knowles [husband of Theodore’s daughter Susannah]

John Shackford jnr [probably Theodore’s brother, 1735-1779]
Theodr Shackford [1773-1809]
Moses Richardson [David Richardson’s father]

All posts on this website are a work in progress.  We’d love to learn of any corrections or additions to the information shared here as we are hoping to learn more of these Shackford families.  Also – if you liked this blog, please like the post here or at as that helps share the post with others. Thanks!


Batchellor Albert Stillman, Litt. D., Editor of State Papers, Miscellaneous Revolutionary Documents of New Hampshire Including the Association Test, the Pension Rolls, and Other Important Papers Vol. 30 State Papers Series (Manchester, N. H.: The John B. Clarke Co, 1910), page 1, 2, 28; digital images, Google Book ( : accessed 18 December 2016.

Copyright 2017 Joanne Shackford Parkes  (sharing a link to this post is appreciated but please do not just copy this material and paste it elsewhere)