Ebenezer Huntington (December 26, 1754 – June 17, 1834) was an officer in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War, and afterwards United States Representative from Connecticut.
Ebenezer was born on December 26, 1754 in Norwich, Connecticut to Jabez and Elizabeth (Backus) Huntington. The Backus family was a prominent family from the area who’s heirs would found Backus Hospital. His brothers Jedediah, Andrew, and Joshua also served during the revolution.
Ebenezer attended Yale College, leaving without permission on April 21, 1775. After communication with the college, he would receive his degree on August 8 of the same year. He would later receive an honorary Bachelor of Arts from Harvard College and in 1785, Master of Arts from both colleges.
After leaving Yale, Ebenezer arrived in Boston where he received an appointment as a First Lieutenant in Captain Chester’s Company of General Joseph’s 2nd Connecticut Regiment. He participated in the Siege of Boston until its close when he marched with General Washington to New York. In June 1776 he was promoted to Captain and fought in the Battle of Long Island under Colonel Samuel Wyllys. By the end of the battle he was promoted to Brigade Major under General Parsons.
On October 26, 1776 he was temporarily promoted to Deputy Adjutant General under Major General Heath in defense of the Highlands and also served as Deputy Paymaster. He was promoted to Major in 1777 in General Israel Putnam’s command, where the unit suffered significant casualties in Long Island. During the summer of 1778 he participated in the Battle of Rhode Island where he would take command of the regiment. Under his command, the unit fought in the Battle of Springfield in 1780 in New Jersey.
Now a Lieutenant Colonel, he was given command of a light infantry regiment and marched with Washington to Yorktown where he witnessed the surrender of Cornwallis. He is represented in the painting by John Trumbull as one of the American Officers. He remained on duty with his troops until the unit was disbanded in May 1783.
==After the War==
Ebenezer Huntington retired from the Army to pursue a career in merchandise. But in 1792 he was appointed as a General by the Governor of Connecticut, Samuel Huntington to be the Adjutant General after Congress passed an act in 1792 authorizing the states to maintain a militia. He would hold the position for the next 30 years under seven different governors.
Concurrently while serving as the state’s Adjutant General, Ebenezer twice served as a member of the United States House of Representatives in Connecticut’s At-large congressional district. His first tenure was for less than five months when he filled the vacancy created when Samuel W. Dana was appointed to the United States Senate to complete the term of James Hillhouse who had resigned. He would serve again as the at-large Congressman five years later when he was elected as a Federalist in November 1816, beginning his term on March 4, 1817. He would only serve one term.
Ebenezer Huntington was married twice. The first was to Sarah Isham of Colchester on December 10, 1791 with whom he had one son, Alfred Isham Huntington. Sarah died in 1793 and Ebenezer would marry again on October 7, 1795 to Lucretia Mary McClellan of Woodstock. Together they would have nine children: Wolcott (b. August 20, 1796), Louisa Mary (b. February 20, 1798), George Washington (b, November 22, 1799), Nancy (b. April 6, 1803), Walter (b. November 11, 1804), Sarah (b. May 1, 1806), Elizabeth (b. August 24, 1808) and Maria (b. December 13, 1810).
Lucretia would pass away on November 5, 1819 while General Huntington would live until June 17, 1834.