Benjamin Church, an American soldier in the early Indian wars, born at Duxburv, Mass., in 1639, died at Little Compton, Jan. 17, 1718. He was engaged in several severe skirmishes in King Philip's war, one of which was in a swamp near Bridgewater; and in August, 1676, he commanded the party by which Philip was killed. Commissioned in 1689 as commander-in-chief of an expedition against the eastern Indians, he proceeded up the Kennebec, visited the forts in that vicinity, and rescued Casco for a time. He made four other expeditions against the Indians in Maine, once landing at Maquoit, and thence going to Pe-jepscot fort, in Brunswick, once again going up the Kennebec, and twice ascending the Penobscot and Passamaquoddy, and doing much damage to the French and Indians on these rivers. Under his direction, and from his minutes, his son Thomas wrote a history of Philip's war (1716; last ed., with notes by II. M. Dexter, 1865).
Benjamin Church, an American physician, born at Newport, R. I., Aug. 24, 1734, lost at sea in May, 1776. He graduated at Harvard college in 1754, and became very successful as a physician and surgeon. He was also a pol-islied speaker, and the author of several spirited poems. Before the breaking out of the revolutionary war he was a leading whig politician, a member of the provincial congress of 1774, and of the committee of safety, and became physician general to the patriot army. He lived extravagantly, became pecuniarily embarrassed, and in 1775 was found to be in treasonable correspondence with Gen. Gage. He was convicted of this offence by a court martial over which Washington presided, was expelled from the house of representatives, and imprisoned at Norwich, Conn., by order of congress, and denied the use of pen, ink, and paper. He was released in the spring of 1770, and permitted to embark for the West Indies on account of his failing health; but the vessel was never again heard from. An account of his trial is contained in the "Massachusetts Historical Collections," vol. i.