When the call for men to go to Boston echoed through the Alleghenies in 1775, James Vanzandt responded. He enlisted under Captain Robert Cluggage in the 1st Pennsylvania under Colonel Thompson. Colonel Thompson left and was replaced with Lt Colonel Hand. After the seige they went to New York and were stationed on Long Island until the British fleet arrived. When his time was up he decided o go home because of the Tory incursions that were occurring.
December 1777 he served as a Lt in 1st company, 3rd Bn., Bedford County Militia. Received Depreciation pay for this service.
He served under Captain Henry Black in 1778 and again in 1779.
When he received his pension in 1833 he was 78. He passed away in Arkansas in January of 1834.