The Associators of the Revolution Webpage [Part of Our Patriots Title Page]
German immigrants on the Pennsylvania frontier are credited with introducing Kentucky Rifles into the Revolutionary War.
They were accurate up to 200 yards.   But Germans were not the only of our Pennsylvanian Associators nor Militia men.

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Useful Links: 
Penna Revolutionary Archives
[searchable site, very, very useful.] 
"The Revolutionary War
at the Penna State Archives
Within These Pages:

1. Associator History 1775-1777;
How it yielded to to the Militia in the Revolution and history  found there

a. The Associators of Pennsylvania, their organization, their rules
b. Our Associators in The Within the Vines Webpages
2. The Militia History
a. Our Militiamen


History of Associators and the Military Association 1775-1777

There were several forms of troops from Penna in the Revolutionary War of which the Associators is the earliest incarnation, and which disbanded making way for the militia. The most succinct and easily understood of the histories of the Associators available on the web can be found in a discussion of the Pennsylvanians combating the English located at the Penna State Archives and in their webpage "The Revolutionary War" : It reads regarding Associators [text entirely as found] :

"The Military Association, 1775-1777:
 At the beginning of 1775, Pennsylvania, founded under Quaker auspices, differed from other American colonies in being totally devoid of military organization. Early in that year, as tension mounted, there appeared spontaneously in certain localities volunteer companies of Associators  patterned essentially upon groups which had existed briefly in 1747-1748 and again after  Braddock's defeat in 1755. These volunteer companies made up the Military Association, a civilian reserve designed to repel invasion. On June 30, 1775, the Provincial Assembly gave official recognition to the Associators and grouped their companies into battalions. Organization was territorial, so that normally a company consisted of men from a single township, while a battalion included all the Associators of several neighboring townships. Ages ranged from sixteen to sixty  years. Provision was made for recruiting from the ranks of Associators in each county a small corps of Minute Men, on call for special duty at short notice, but no evidence of the existence of such a corps in Pennsylvania survives. It is notable, however, that during the summer campaign of 1776, thousands of Pennsylvania Associators saw active service in New Jersey. During the winter of 1776-1777 the Association collapsed, and the Assembly replaced it with a militia system which, though imperfect, proved better adapted to Pennsylvania's needs. With no radical changes, the new militia system served the Commonwealth through war and peace until 1842. "
From "The Revolutionary War" at the Penna State Archives

The Associators of Pennsylvania, their organization, their rules

Edward W. Spangler, The Annals of the Families of Caspar, Henry, Baltzer and George Spengler, York, Pennsylvania: The York Daily Publishing Co., 1896., p 415-416 wrote:

 ́In the Rules and Regulations issued in Philadelphia in 1775...for the  better Government of the Military Association in   Pennsylvania," it  was provided (inter alia) that all officers chosen or appointed in battalions formed before October, 1775, in the City of   Philadelphia, were to take rank or precedence of all other officers of equal dignity, chosen or appointed in any other part  of the Province. Like precedence was given to the officers of the counties according to the seniority of such counties. The battalions were to consist of at least six Companies, of not less than 40 and not  more than 76 privates each, and to have officers, Colonel, Lieutenant Colonel, two Majors, a Standard Bearer, Adjutant, Sergeant  Major, drum and fife Major; and the officers of  each Company to consist of a Captain, two Lieutenants, one or two ensigns, four Sergeants, four Corporals and drummer and fifer;  Companies of Riflemen were to consist of not less than 49 nor more than 56 privates.

Every private of a rifle company was required to furnish himself with a good rifle gun, a powder horn, a charger, a bullet screw, twelve flints, a strong pouch or bag that will hold four pounds of ball, and such other accoutrements as may be proper for a rifleman.

Every associator (except riflemen) was required to furnish himself with a good and sufficient firelock, a bayonet, a steel ramrod, worm, priming wire and brush, a cartridge box that will contain 23  rounds of cartridges, twelve flints, a knapsack, a sufficient  powder horn, and a pouch that will hold four pounds of ball.

No Company or battalion was to meet at a tavern on any of the days of exercise; nor to march to any tavern before they were discharged.

The following pay was prescribed for every day of service when attending their respective battalions or companies: An Adjutant 7 shillings and six pence, a drummer 3 shillings, a fifer 3 shillings, a drum Major and fife Major of every battalion not exceeding 15 shillings per week.

If any associators left a family not of ability to maintain themselves, his district was required to make provision for such maintenance.

 All Non-Associators, capable of bearing arms, between the ages of 15 and 50 years, were assessed Two Pounds Ten Shillings each. ́

From "The Revolutionary War" at the Penna State Archives See also at same page linked as source above,  history on :
The Pennsylvania Militia, 1777-1783
Line Troops and the Pennsylvania Line
The Pennsylvania Navy, 1775-1783
and Links to Records pertinent to the Revolutionary War
Other Useful Links:


The Associators of Pennsylvania, their organization, their rules