PHOTO BY KEVIN HEMSTOCK -- Spencer Merritt's grave in Asbury U.M. Cemetery in Millington. He was a member of the 33rd Regiment Maryland Militia.

MILLINGTON — It’s not always easy to find the graves of the War of 1812 militiamen. However, one of the earliest graves in the Asbury UM Church cemetery, on the town’s west end, is that of Spencer Merritt.

Merritt was a member of the 33rd Regiment Maryland Militia, comprised mostly of men from Upper Kent County. Many of the family names are the same as those that can be found in the area of Galena, Millington, Chesterville and Sassafras today, including Foreman, Bramble, Blackiston, Rolph, Fox, Ringgold, Wilmer, Vansant and Calder.

Born April 8, 1792, Pvt. Merrit served on several companies from 1813 to 1814. He was serving under Capt. Benjamin Massey, May 4-12, 1813, when the British attacked and burned Georgetown, in a raid that most remember as that in which the legend of Kitty Knight was established. Merritt was probably among the two dozen or so militiamen on Pearce’s Point, on the Kent side of the Sassafras River who shot at the British as the red-coated Royal Marines, in transport barges, approached Georgetown.

Merritt stayed in the Millington area after the war. He married Mary Riley, of Queen Anne’s County, in 1824 and they had at least one child, Edward.

Spencer Merritt died July 2, 1853, just a few months after his wife.

On May 26, 2013, George Mitchell, U.S. Navy (ret.), and Kevin Hemstock, a member of the Friends of Kent County, Maryland, War of 1812, placed a flag at Merritt’s grave as a Memorial Day honor to the here-to-for forgotten war veteran.

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One Response to “Grave of 1812 soldier found in Millington cemetery”

  1. PETER S. BURDEOS on October 22nd, 2013 10:56 am

    I am very happy that graves of fallen soldiers who died and fought for the country are discovered and given their appropriate respect and honors. I am heartbroken seeing the fresh and significant faces of fallen soldiers collectively enlisted in the record “freedom remembered” list of casualties of war. Though we cherish their heroism in whichever war they fought for, I still felt the loss of the families they left behind. May they rest in peace.

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