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Loyalist Trails UELAC Newsletter, 2007 Archive

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"Loyalist Trails" 2007-05: February 4, 2007

Bus Trip/Tour Toronto to Windsor Thursday; Return Sunday after Conference

Join a group of fellow Loyalists and take the easy way from Toronto to Windsor and back, for the "At The End of The Trail" Conference. The bus will leave Toronto after morning rush hour on Thursday May 31. It will take a Loyalist route from London to Windsor, passing by and stopping at a number of Loyalist and related sites. We will stop for lunch and will arrive in time to register for the conference, book into the hotel and grab a bite to eat before the group leaves for the welcoming reception. Toronto departure, with possibly multiple pickup points, between 9:00 and 10:00 am.

On Sunday the bus will depart following the conclusion of the conference at about 2:00 and return directly to Toronto where it should arrive about 6:30 or 7:00 pm.

The cost at $140 will be slightly more than the cost of a round trip train ticket at $121, but you get several hours of Loyalist networking and get to see first hand more of our south western Ontario loyalist heritage.

Please make your plans for conference soon, and let me know as soon as possible if you are interested, without committing, in taking the bus to and from. We will have to confirm the bus well in advance so are looking for commitments and payment by mid-April.

Expressions of interest now please to Doug Grant

...Doug Grant

Did You Know? Some Interesting facts about Essex County

- The first people to live in the Essex County area were people known as the Mound Builders. They were in the area before the Native American tribes that we know today.

- The first white men in the area were the Missionaries François Dollier de Casson and his followers. They arrived in Essex County in 1670 while on their way to Sault Ste. Marie.

- The first country to lay claim the land now known as Essex County was France and it was Samuel de Champlain who laid this claim.

- In the early days, bartering was the means of exchange for goods.

"At The End Of The Trail" Conference 2007: Sunday Activities

Join us Sunday morning for an amazing experience in Olde Sandwich Towne.

Dressed in period dress we will parade through the town to St. John's Anglican Church, the oldest Anglican Parish west of Niagara. Revel in the charm and character of this amazing historical area as you walk the streets that General Brock and Tecumseh walked. Following Church Services join us for an old fashioned luncheon in the Church Hall. For those staying with us we welcome you to join us in Amherstburg for a re-enactment of the 1796 Loyalist Landing. It is sure to be a memorable day.

...Kimberly Hurst UE, 2007 Conference Chair, Bicentennial Branch

Articles

The First Famous Loyalist: Jane McCrea

Who is the most famous loyalist of the American Revolution? If you asked that question during the course of the War of Independence, a particular woman's name would immediately have come to any American colonist you might have questioned. Today you can go to your search engine and learn the name of this loyalist on the internet. Her name was Jane McCrea.

Her beauty, the circumstances of her death, and an anti-Indian racism all contributed to Jane's widespread and lasting fame. Since her death, songs, books, a painting, and even a memorial have told the tragic story of this twenty-six year old. But this loyalist's fame in the United States is built on falsehoods. Separating the truth about Jane McCrea from the legend which has grown up around her is no easy task.

Except for her brother, all of Jane's family were true to their king. Even her fiancée David Jones, was a loyalist soldier who served under General Burgoyne. Ironically, it was the advancement of that general's army which would set in motion the circumstances leading to Jane's tragic death.

In July of 1777 General Burgoyne was leading British forces down into New York from the Canadas. Included in his army were native warriors who were promised rewards of rum for the capture of white rebel prisoners.

Since the British forces and their native allies were not likely able to distinguish between those who were true to the king, both loyalists and rebels decided to flee the troops as they marched down the Hudson River Valley. Jane and her friend, Mrs. Sarah McNeil, had been promised a British escort to deliver them to the safety of a nearby fort, but the women's departure was delayed for want of side-saddles for their horses. By noon, the escorts had not yet appeared, but Indians eager to seize patriot prisoners had.

In fear, the two women ran into the cellar. Mrs. McNeil was grabbed on the stairway; Jane McCrea was seized from her hiding place. Both women were put onto their own horses and led off to nearby Fort Edward by their captors in hope of a reward.

Rebel soldiers followed in hot pursuit, firing on the retreating kidnappers and the women. Jane McCrea, hit by several bullets, fell dead from her horse. Anxious to receive a reward for capturing a patriot prisoner, her captor took her scalp.

Mrs. McNeil was eventually ransomed and taken to the British camp. An aide-de-camp showed Jane's friend the scalp-lock the commander had been given by McCrea's captor. McNeil instantly recognized the distinctive black hair as being that of her friend.

Jane McCrea was buried by the patriot soldiers who found her body on the road to Fort Edward. A few years later when Jane McCrea's remains were taken to another burial ground, a surgeon examined her skull and found no evidence of any head wounds. Why would he even bother looking? Because in the intervening years an entirely different story concerning the tragic death of the loyalist woman had spread throughout the countryside, a legend that even other loyalists believed to be the truth.

According to the patriot accounts of McCrea's death, her fiancée, David Jones, had hired natives to escort Jane safely through patriot territory so that they could be married on that day. Two Indians started out with Jane, but fell into an argument about who would receive the promised reward. Anxious not to let his companion earn payment for guiding Miss McCrea, one of the men took his tomahawk and crushed Jane's skull, killing her on the spot.

A slightly different version said that the natives took Jane to a hill where British troops watched her being shot to death in cold blood, scalped, and left on the ground. As the years passed and the story grew, Jane was described as having blonde hair and being dressed in her wedding gown.

The story of murder and scalping sent a shock wave through the colony, even though Jane McCrea was a known loyalist. A New York woman had been killed by natives working on behalf of the British, and that was enough to inspire men to join the patriot side.

Animosity towards the crown and its supporters grew throughout the colonies. The perception that David Jones had entrusted his fiancée to murderers was a propaganda tool that rebels used to deepen hatred of loyalists. Some historians have claimed that the rallying cry of Jane McCrea's death contributed to the defeat of General Burgoyne's army later that summer which, in turn, led to the French allying themselves with the rebel forces, thus bringing about the victory of the American patriots. Such is the power of a legend.

People of all times and ages have been attracted to stories of noble heroines who risk their lives for the objects of their devotion. (Consider Evangeline, Pocahontas, or Joan of Arc.) In the early years of the new American republic, another woman entered folklore as a figure of tragedy. Jane McCrea, who did nothing more than try to flee an advancing army, became the stuff of legend -- and the most famous loyalist of the American Revolution.

...Stephen Davidson

Loyalist Bibliography has been Updated

A United Empire Loyalists' Bibliography: A UEL Bibliography of the American Revolution, and the Post War Settlement of the Loyalists, complied by Lieutenant Colonel William A. Smy, OMM, CD, UE has been extended and the additions have now been added to the web site by Ed Scott. There are some 18 different segments in the bibliography, including:

Part 1: Bibliographies, Guides, Indexes, and Directories

Part 2: Manuscript Collections and Government Records

Part 4: American Revolution, Loyalists and Loyalism

Part 5: British Army, Provincial (Loyalist) Corps, Hessian and German Troops

Part 7: British Indian Department

Part 8: Operations - Northern Theatre

Part 12: Post-War Settlement, Loyalism, and Political Activity

Part 13: Loyalist Personalities, Family Histories, and Genealogies

Part 18: Loyalist Fiction

Click here for the table of contents.

Map of Osnabrook

Readers of Loyalist Trails may not know about the following website, maybe try to find John Mann’s grant on it. This is a great map of individual (named) properties. I have a particular interest in Osnabruck Township because my grandfather was an Anglican priest there in the early days of his ministry. Of course the sadness is that this is also the area of the lost villages. The towns of Aultsville, Farran’s Point, Woodlands, Santa Cruz, Dickinson’s Landing, Wales, Moulinette, Mille Roches and Maple Grove all disappeared during the construction of the Hydro Power Project and the St. Lawrence Seaway. Iroquois was moved one mile back from the river and Morrisburg lost most if not all of its down town area. The rectory where my grandfather lived was at Woodlands. The map is available here.

...Ann Jarvis Boa

Symposium: Agents of Change in Colonial New York: Sir William Johnson's World

This sympsium is scheduled for OCTOBER 19-21, 2007 at Fulton-Montgomery Community College, Johnstown, NY. Plans are underway for a weekend of public presentations, exploring the political, economic and social dynamics of colonial upstate New York. This year's focus will be on the new worlds created on the frontier borderlands, by Sir William Johnson, Nicholas Herkimer, Philp Schuyler, and Joesph Brant. Click here for more details.

[submitted by Bill Glidden]

Volunteers Wanted in Beautiful Bay of Quinte Area

Join us for a holiday with Roots and Ancestors. As with any museum, volunteers are always welcome at U.E.L. Heritage Centre & Park, on the Loyalist Parkway in Adolphustown, Ontario. The Dr. Burleigh Loyalist Records Project and the Bay of Quinte Heritage Mapping Project (see below for projects' details) are part of our 225th Anniversary initiative and we sure could use your help. Come and relax with us this summer at one of our 110 RV campsites. For more information special rates and project schedules, contact Executive Director, Brandt Zätterberg U.E. at email <1784@uel.ca> or telephone 613.373.2196.

Dr. Burleigh Loyalist Records Project: Bay of Quinte Branch

Lt. Col. H.C. Burleigh, MD was the genealogist of the UELAC Bay of Quinte Branch from 1956 to 1975. Upon his death in 1980, Dr. Burleigh’s personal genealogy notes were placed in the Queens University Archives (see http://my.tbaytel.net/bmartin/burleigh.htm) where they have become a “must-see” for Quinte Loyalist researchers. The Queen’s records list over 1,000 family names. What some people do not realize is that many of the sundry scraps of paper at Queens are Dr. Burleigh’s rough notes for the finished applications that are in the archival collection of the Bay of Quinte Branch. The Branch has undertaken to complement the Queen’s Collection by referencing the applications with primary proof. To date we have a Burleigh-connected database of over 50,000 individuals. This Project is in the initial stages and requires Volunteers to bring added-value to this archival collection.

...Brandt Zätterberg U.E.

Bay of Quinte Heritage Mapping Project

Maps have always been a valuable reference for family historians in understanding migration patterns and social interaction. UELAC Bay of Quinte Branch has digitized and purchased the Lot and Concession polygons for the Counties of Frontenac, Lennox and Addington, Prince Edward, Hastings and Northumberland. Using desktop mapping to attach genealogical data to Lots and Concessions will allow family researchers to expand their knowledge of their ancestors. While this project is in its infancy the UEL Heritage Centre & Park’s Executive Director has almost twenty-years of experience in Geographic Information Systems and is looking forward to building a volunteer team to move Heritage Mapping forward.

...Brandt Zätterberg U.E.

Offer of Assistance to Research in South Carolina

My wife and I (she's descended from Loyalists kicked out of Massachusetts at the end of the revolution) greatly enjoy the Loyalist Trails. It struck me, while reading the latest issue, and an article on Guilford Courthouse and Tarleton's Legion, that we might be of assistance to some of your northern readers interested in monuments or tracking their loyalist ancestors down here in the south. We live in South Carolina, and are avid trackers through the many battle sites of the revolution. Few are aware that there were more battles and skirmishes in the American Revolution fought in South Carolina than in any other state...at least 137 of them.

My own ancestor was a mercenary, of the von Huyn/Benning regiment, who fought at Long Island, Newport, and Charleston, from 1776 until their return in the 1780s.

So, if any readers have a special interest in the monuments to British or Loyalist regiments, give us some clues, and we will go hunting. We have frequently stumbled across the graves of British officers in small churchyards, and that is always rewarding.

...Steve and Ann Schar, Columbia, South Carolina {Whywally AT aol DOT com} how do I email them?

New in Loyalist Directory: Archibald Thomson, from Peter Scarlett

From Peter Scarlett comes information about Archibald Thomson, now posted in our Loyalist Directory.

Died This Day 31 January 1863, John Beverley Robinson - the Globe & Mail 31 Jan. 2007

Lawyer, Family Compact leader, born on July 26, 1891, in Berthier, Que.

After attending the school of John Strachan in York (now Toronto), he was appointed acting attorney-general of Upper Canada during the War of 1812. After the war, he went to England to study and returned to become attorney-general. In 1820 he won a seat in the colonial assembly where he was a staunch defender of the Church of England and Family Compact, a social hierarchy headed by a chosen elite. He later became chief justice and, after the rebellion of 1837, had rebels Samuel Lount and Peter Matthews executed. He favoured Confederation and unity against "pernicious American influences."

Information about Lt. William Atkinson, Loyalist, Kingston and Possible Relatives

I am looking for the genealogy of Lt. William Atkinson UE who landed at Kingston about 1783, died c1810.

In particular any connection to a Private William Atkinson/Ateson who is mentioned in Smy's book on Butlers Rangers as having 300 Acres in Nassau 1792. Could the Pte Wm. Atkinson at Nassau/Niagara be a son of the Lt. Wm Atkinson at Kingston?

Is there a connection to Wm Atkinson b c1775 married to Senia Morningstar/Morgenstern living 1812 in Woodhouse Tp? This latter William Atkinson is my direct ancestor, his marriage to Senia may have been a second for both. Their known children are Anna b c1810, Thomas b c1811, and Robert b c1819. He left no later traces, but in 1825 Senia witnessed her father's claim for losses in the war of 1812-1814, and she appears in the 1851, 1861 and 1871 censuses living with her son Robert, she died in 1872 in Humberstone TP.

...Ken Atkinson {atkinson DOT ken AT gmail DOT com} how do I email him?

Response re Land Grant for a John Mann - see Loyalist Trails 28 January 2007

The Land grant for John Mann on 11 June 1804, is not the same as my Ensign John MANN. However, it could have been a confirmation of part of the original grant issued in 1784, when the KRRNY came to Bay of Quinte.

Ensign John MANN, KRRNY, is listed at OSNABRUCK - "Proprietors Names" as documented in the original grant. This document was prepared by Surveyor John Collins in 1789, when Lord Dorchester ordered a compilation of land owners. AO - MS 400-R7-Vol.008, p62. Copy on file at UELAC.

Top of document 'M'- "Mann, Ens'n John, Lot#14 in 1st Conc., 200 acres; 1/2 Lot#13, 1st Conc., 100 acres; Lot#14 in 2nd Conc., 200 acres, 'Number of Acres' total 500.

Ensign John MANN died 8 March 2005 at Quebec City. He was my 3rd Great-grandfather.

His eldest son, John Johnson Mann sold the land at Osnabruck on the 26th September 1807 to Richard Merkle.

...Donald J. Flowers, U.E., Ancestor: Ensign John MANN, KRRNY, U.E.

To protect the people who send in queries from unwanted spam email, the online edition of Loyalist Trails no longer uses direct hyperlinks for their email addresses. Simply rewrite "name AT website DOT net" as name@website.net and sent your email to that address. For example, "doug DOT grant AT insurance-canada DOT ca" is doug.grant@insurance-canada.ca. Contact Doug with questions, or to be put in touch with someone whose email address is not listed.