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Doctor's certificate for disenrollment of military service for Eratus Clapp

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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Erastus Clapp (1771-1851) was a lifelong resident of Deerfield, Massachusetts; from 1809 on, he lived in the Mill River district of the town. Like all able-bodied men, he was required to register and appear for the yearly muster drill, which was retained in the United States until the Civil War. Militia units, unlike the armies of today, were intended to fight only within the immediate area in which it was raised. This "disenrollment" was issued during the War of 1812, a conflict that was very unpopular in New England because the region was barely touched by the war. Massachusetts did not mobilize its militia until the summer of 1814. Although there may have been political reasons for Clapp to want out of the militia in the summer of 1813, he was forty-two years old, rather old for military service, and had aching joints.


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