When John Henry returned from Holland as a new minister, he also found himself a new bride. John Henry and his wife, Sarah Livingston,
a cousin and the daughter of Philip Livingston, the signer of the Declaration of Independence, lived in New York City,
where the young minister had a church.
When the city was invaded by the British, John Henry took his wife and moved in with
his in-laws, until their part of the country became too dangerous, and he brought his family to live with his parents in
Poughkeepsie. In one of the sad losses of the war, John Henry became worried when a British ship shelled his father's house,
and burned his diary because of the information that might be used against fellow patriots. As it turned out, the British
sailed on without doing anything else to Poughkeepsie, and his diary would have been safe.