Ann Reynolds Story

Ann Story at the Homestead
Ann Story at the Homestead

Time Period

1750-1820

Subject Categories

Early Settler, Military

Notable Facts

Lived with her five children in a cabin in Salisbury in the early years of settlement in Vermont. Was a spy and courier for Vermont's militia, the Green Mountain Boys, during the American Revolution and did much to aid their cause.

Personal Information

Date of Birth

2/23/1735

Date of Death

04/05/1817

Primary Residence

Salisbury

Ethnicity

Caucasian

Historical Significance

Ann Reynolds Story was born in Preston, Connecticut and married Amos Story in 1755. They had five children, Solomon, Ephraim, Samuel, Susanna, and Hannah. In 1774, the family moved to Rutland, Vermont. Amos and Samuel left to go further north and build a home for the family in Salisbury. While clearing land, a large tree fell on Amos, killing him instantly. Ann decided to bring her children to the home that their deceased father had built for them. In 1776, the home was set on fire by the Indians, but the family rebuilt the home with an escape tunnel leading to Otter Creek, in case of another surprise attack.

One day the Story boys found a young woman who had been captured by Indians but left behind when she could not keep up. She was pregnant, so the family took her in and Ann served as midwife when the baby was born. This was during the American Revolution, and one morning, a Royalist named Ezekiel Jenny walked by and heard the baby cry. Jenny waited for Story to emerge and confronted her with his musket in the hopes that she would betray her allies, but she would not. After Jenny left, Story sent a message to the Green Mountain Boys which resulted in the capture of a Tory group.

Story was a valuable aid and advisor to the Green Mountain Boys. She once said to them, "I cannot live to see my children murdered before my eyes - give me a place among you and see if I am the first to desert my post." Her cabin was used for rest and shelter by the Patriots and as a message drop.

At the age of fifty-one, Story married Benjamin Smalley and moved to Middlebury. When he passed away, she married Captain Stephen Goodrich, also of Middlebury. She died on April 5, 1817 at the age of seventy-five. A cabin has been constructed on the site of her original log home in Salisbury. The monument there reads, "In grateful memory of her service in the struggle of the Green Mountain Boys for independence."

Organizations or Movements

  • Green Mountain Boys

Occupations

  • Midwife
  • Farmer

Additional Information (Bibliography)

  • Ann Story Link

  • Vermont Encyclopedia

  • Those Indomitable Vermont Women

  • Jill Mudgett, Vermont Public Radio commentary, March 28, 2012. Link.

  • Deborah Clifford, More Than Petticoats: Remarkable Vermont Women (2009): 10-17.