John Conrad Pickard was born on March 7, 1756 in Springfield, New York to Conrad Pickard and Anna Margaretha Walrath. According to his Revolutionary War pension application, John served in Winn's Ranger Company and later fought at Oriskany. He was in the Battle of Stone Arabia in 1780 and claims to have been no more than three yards from Colonel Brown when Brown was shot dead. A year later he fought in the Battle of Johnstown. John Conrad served in the war as a private and later as an ensign. At the end of the war John served as a lieutenant. After the war, John served as part of the guard that escorted George Washington on his tour through the Mohawk Valley to see first hand the devastation the war had brought to the region.
In 1773, John married Maria Kinyet Bradt in Cherry Valley. Kinyet and at least two children were taken prisoner in Joseph Brandt's raid on the Springfield settlements in 1778 but later released. John, Maria, and other family members moved west in around 1820. They first moved to Owasco. There, his father died in 1827 at the age of 100. In the 1830s the family removed to Sparta, Livingston County. John died there in December 1836.