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Watch and Sword of Captain John Rush

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Watch and Sword of Captain John Rush

Posted: 25 May 2010 10:54AM GMT
Classification: Query
Surnames: Rush Darke
The histories of the Rush family descended of Captain John Rush mention his sword, watch, and a leaf from the family bible. They mention that the sword was in the possession of Benjamin Rush and the watch descended to General William Darke.

On Darke's death, Benjamin Rush wrote his widow asking for the watch. I have photographs and a transcription of the letter.

In 1812 Benjamin Rush wrote John Adams stating that he was in posession of all three artifacts.

In Jan 1877 an article was published in Potter's American monthly, Volumes 8-9 indicating that the relics were recently donated to the National Museum at Independence Hall.

I just wrote an email to Independence Hall and received a prompt reply from the curator confirming the donation in 1877. She wrote,

"The John Rush sword and watch deposited at Independence Hall in 1877 were returned on 18 April 1923 to Mr. Benjamin and Mrs. Mary Wheeler Lockwood Rush of Philadelphia. Mr. Rush (1869- died before 1950) was a seventh generation descendent of John Rush (1620-1699) and the grandson of Dr. Benjamin Rush (1745-1813) who signed the Declaration of Independence. Mr. Rush's uncle, Benjamin Rush (1811-1877), had deposited the sword and watch at Independence Hall in 1877. In 1920, the uncle's daughter Catherine Rush Camac petitioned to get the items back from Independence Hall and named her cousin Benjamin Rush (who received the items back in 1923) as the heir. We have no record of the items' whereabouts today. Perhaps they're still owned by the descendents of Mr. and Mrs. Rush who received them in 1923?

"Just FYI, we've had your same question recently from other Rush descendents, Lesa G. Hale in August 2007 and Samantha Rush Hickle in May 2008."

I am posting hoping to learn, if possible, who might have the items now? I would be glad to share the transcription of the letter; I would love to have a photo of the items if that is possible. The museum apparently did not have the Bible page, and I wonder where that is? I am also curious as to what prompted the other two inquiries to the National Museum?

Looking forward to replies.
Ellen

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