But Coy admitted “That he has no dockumentary evidence; that he knows of no person whose testimony he can procure who can testify to his service.” All he had to convince the officials overseeing the pension system that he had genuinely served was the vivid authenticity of his memories.
Coy therefore offered up details of his weeks in military service more than three-quarters of a century before. For example, David Coy recalled that the date when his unit arrived in Providence was 1 Apr 1777 because of this recollection:
A boy came up to the Capt. and said, gentlemen, you have lost your kneebuckle,Even Judge Samuel Sewall would have to acknowledge that April Fools’ joke ended up having some value.
the Captain looking said, no, I have not.
“on the other knee said the boy”
no that is not lost said the capt.
the boy running off said “April fool”.
Coy also recalled “That the General commanding at the time of his serving on that station he thinks was Spencer, who was at Providence and he thinks was not a brave man as they used to call him granny Spencer.” More on Joseph Spencer’s nickname here.
(I first met up with David Coy’s pension record as transcribed by Paula Naujalis. This week I checked the file and transcribed it myself.)