Continental Army officer.
Went to work for his uncle, the governor of Santa Cruz in the Danish Virgin Islands. Toured mainland colonies (1772).
Enlisted in Massachusetts militia (1775); served as brigade major under Benedict Arnold in the invasion of Canada. Captured (December 1775); exchanged (January 1777). Lieutenant colonel, then colonel (1777) in the Continental Army. Commander of light infantry regiment (1779); organized a marching band to improve morale. Brigadier general (1783). Treasurer of Pennsylvania (1789-96).
Born at Fâborg, Fünen, Denmark. Married Elizabeth Carson in 1785.