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Loyalist Trails UELAC Newsletter, 2012 Archive

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"Loyalist Trails" 2012-40: October 7, 2012

Articles

It's in the Cards – by Stephen Davidson

A card game can be lost or won with the flip of a single card. If we are to believe some historians, it would seem that Britain's army and her loyal colonists lost the American Revolution due, in part, to the fondness that a general and his loyalist companion had for the card game of faro.

In the autumn of 1775, Sir William Howe became the chief commander of the British forces in North American. Given that he had an army of more than 9,000 soldier, it seems strange that he could not have put down Massachusetts' growing rebel sentiment. According to the memoirs of the loyalist Judge Thomas Jones, Howe stayed within Boston despite the ever swelling number of patriots gathering around the city. The British general, wrote the judge, "continued perfectly still, nothing seemed to engross his attention but the faro table, the play house, the dancing assembly, and Mrs. Loring." The months that could have been spent improving the fortifications surrounding Boston were whiled away with card playing.

On March 2, 1776 the patriot army began to fire its heavy guns on Boston. But Howe did not take a personal interest in the attack. In describing this interchange, the historian Michael Pearson noted that Howe "refused to be hurried from his game of faro or Mrs. Loring". Two weeks later, the British army and loyalists who had gathered in Boston were forced to evacuate to Halifax.

Elizabeth Loring, described as Howe's mistress in most histories of the Revolution, was "passionately devoted to cards". The particular vice she shared with Sir William Howe was a love of the game of faro.

Faro had a fairly long history. Originating in France in the late 17th century, faro went on to become the "national game" of the United States in the 19th century. The last known appearance of the game at Nevada's casinos was in 1985. As might be guessed, the name is a corruption of the word "pharoah" and derives from the fact that French cards once carried Egyptian drawings rather than the Tudor royalty of today's deck.

There are a number of reasons that faro was popular. It was easy to learn, seemed fair, did not take long to play, and there was a higher likelihood of its players winning compared to other games. Any number of participants played against the house (also referred to as the dealer or "bank"). Faro dealers often travelled from town to town, carrying with them the equipment needed for the game.

In addition to fifty-two cards, faro also required a special table. It was oblong with a recess carved out in the middle of one of the long sides. Here the dealer sat so as to be near the betting lay-out. This was comprised of one card of each denomination (usually from the spades suit) pasted to the table's surface. The dealer also had a faro-box, a check-rack, a cue-keeper, cue-cards, and a shuffling board as part of the game's apparatus. The players put their stakes on the faro table's pasted cards. Their success depended on what cards were drawn by the dealer.

Faro's detractors thought it was a dangerous scam that reduced its players to paupers and ruined families. Because the game offered such a very small advantage to the house, players often walked away with a great deal of cash. Consequently, some dealers cheated to boost their advantage. Over time, it was generally assumed that all faro games were rigged. But that did not diminsh its popularity with either the rich or the poor.

Elizabeth Loring, a member of the colonial upper class, found faro to be irresistable. After fleeing to Halifax with General Howe, the loyalist accompanied the commander in chief to New York. Here, Judge Jones notes, that Howe could have come to the rescue of a local loyalist name Dunbar. However, "no application was ever made, and while the General was lolling in the arms of his mistress, and sporting his cash at the faro bank, the poor unhappy loyalist was executed." Once again, Howe's inaction was blamed on his addiction to cards.

A year later, Howe took Loring to Philadelphia when the British forces occupied the city. The plays, gambling, and cock-fighting enjoyed by the soldiers scandallized the Quaker citizenry. A Hessian officer operated a faro table and "made a considerable fortune by ruining young Englishmen, many of whom were obliged to sell their commission and go home penniless." The records of the period note that Elizabeth once lost 300 guineas at a single faro game.

While the citizens of Philadelphia came to terms with 20,000 soldiers stationed within their city, Washington's army of 9,000 was camped a mere twenty miles away in Valley Forge. Howe could have attacked the rebels at any time and brought the revolution to a sudden end. But it was the winter, and in European wars, generals did not go to battle in winter. Instead, Howe, his officers, and the loyalists of Philadelphia's social elite whiled away the hours playing cards.

The quick victory over the colonial rebels which the British expected never materialized. Unhappy with how his lack of success in the colonies had tarnished his reputation, Howe resigned. The crown appointed General Henry Clinton as the new commander. Howe's officers wanted to send their former chief off in grand style, so they staged the infamous Mischianza, a day-long pageant of games and merry making. It will come as no surprise to learn that when a local mansion was conscripted for use as the farewell party's venue, one of its rooms was the site for a faro table.

Was the Revolution lost because the British commander and his retinue could not resist the faro tables? Did the distraction of gambling thwart an easy victory over colonial soldiers? It would be too great a simplification of all that transpired in the opening years of the Revolution to make such a case. However, it is certainly fascinating to consider the impact that something so seemingly trivial as a card game had on the events of the loyalist era.

First Generation in America: Richard Raymond (1630 - 1692) © George McNeillie

I have often had a strong desire to visit Salem, Massachusetts, and to see the old frame of the little Puritan Church in which the first of our race in the New World were wont to worship 280 years ago, but have never been able to do so. One of my old parishioners of St. Mary's Church in St. John [New Brunswick], Miss Cassie Barton, once gave me an interesting account of her visit to this ancient church relic in Salem.

On the 20th of October, 1662, Richard Raymond bought a house and land in Norwalk, and from this date the name of Raymond has continued there. Our branch of the family lived there until the town was burned by [British Major-General William] Tryon in 1779, during the Revolution – or for nearly 120 years. (A.D. 1662 – 1779).

The name Norwalk is probably of Indian origin. When the English came to country the Indians were called "the Norwake Indians", and the river was known as the "Norwake River". A Mr. Ludlow, on February 26, 1640, purchased the eastern part of the town from the Indians for "Eight fathom of wampum, six coates, tenn jewes-harpes, tenn fathom Tobakoe, three kettles of six hands about, and tenn looking-glasses."

The bounds of the tract were, "On the West the Norwalke River, on the South the Sea, on the East the Soakatuch River." The northern boundary was loosely defined to be – "From the Sea a day's walk into the Country".

On the 20th of April, 1640, only a few weeks later, the meadows and uplands adjoining on the west side of the river were purchased from the Indians by Capt. Daniel Patrick for the following consideration:- "Of wampum tenn fathoms, hatchetts three, howes three -- when shipps come – six glasses, twelfe tobackoe pipes, three knifes, tenn drills, tenn needles, -- the land to extend as farr up the country as an Indian can goe in a day from sun rising to sun setting."

In his History of Connecticut, Trumbull says, "A few families seem to have planted themselves in the town about the time of these purchases"; but there is no evidence in the town records of the presence of settled residents at Norwalk until the time of its regular settlement in 1651. On the 19th June, 1650, an agreement was drawn up between Roger Ludlow and Nathaniel Eli, Richard Olmstead and others for the settling and planting of Norwalk. The possession of the lands was confirmed to the colony by Robert Treat, Governor of Connecticut, on March 30, 1686.

Richard Raymond on his removal to Norwalk in October, 1662, bought of Ralph Keeler the "housing contained at present in my home-lot, or cow-yard, the house, floors, doors, glass windows, shelves, &c., and four acres of land". The position of his lot is shown in the plan of the ancient settlement in Hall's Norwalk. The lot is situated near the crossing of East Avenue by the New York and New Haven Railway. In 1847 it was owned by one Daniel Hanford.

It was left to John Raymond (the eldest son of Richard) to carry on the line of our descent in Norwalk, and of him we shall presently speak more fully.

Richard Raymond, as already mentioned, died at Saybrook, Conn., in 1692, aged about 90 years. He lived about 28 years in Saybrooke. This little town lay at the mouth of the Connecticut River, opposite the east end of Long Island, about twelve miles west of New London.

Excerpt from Book of Family History, by The Ven. William Odber Raymond, LL.D, FRSC. © 2009 George McNeillie - all rights reserved [published here with permission; see footnote].

...George McNeillie

In the Archives: Fall 2012 (Part 3), by Christopher Minty

[See Part One and Part Two – ed.]

Despite colonists often being familiar with one another during the Imperial Crisis and some acting in union, the American Revolution galvanised many to turn against their former friends, family members and neighbours. Loyalists (and Patriots, on occasion) were subjected to what can only be described is inhumane barbarity, something that in the modern world could equate to crimes against humanity.

Charles Inglis, the minister we have been following recently, documented his experiences regarding the treatment of fellow Loyalists. On 14 June 1776, he noted that whilst riding back to New York from Hackensack, there had been a series of disturbances in New York. During these riots, as Inglis termed them, "a great Number of persons who were under the Imputation of being Tories were seized, rod[e] on Rails, their Cloth[e]s torn off., & much beaten & abused". As a direct consequence of this, Inglis scribbled in his diary, many Loyalists left New York and "durnst not return". Inglis increasingly began to feel isolated in New York, his home; as many other Anglican ministers left the city because they were "abused or banished."

One such Anglican minister who left was Myles Cooper, President of King's College. Cooper, arguably one of the most hated Loyalist's in America, left in May 1775 for London and eventually settled in Edinburgh (see Youtube video). When Cooper arrived, however, after his hasty exit from New York, his life became completely ostracised from his previous life in New York. Inglis, John Wetherhead, Samuel Seabury, William Bayard and Peter Middleton, among others, all corresponded with Cooper but were left disappointed as their friend's correspondence became patchy at best. Inglis, who seems to provide one of the best accounts of the entire period, wrote in mid-177 that "It is long, very long indeed, since I have received a Line from you; which I impute chiefly to your Distance from that great Whirlpool of Business & Politics, London, for several months past." Seabury echoed similar thoughts: "Where this Letter will find you, or whether it will find you at all, I know not; but wherever it shall find you, I hope it will find you happy. I long to hear from you; I long more to see you. I sometimes wish you here: I oftener rejoice that you are so far removed from such Scenes of Vexation & Chagrene, as perpetually meet us here," as did John Wetherhead: "It would indeed have given me no small Uneasiness as you suppose, had I found myself deprived of so long a time of any Letters from you". Cooper, it appears, seems to have distanced himself from his friends. The reasons for this can only be speculative, but it is known that he desired to return to New York and his beloved College. His correspondents constantly ask him not to return because the College was in no fit state for his eyes; it is an almost omnipresent feature of Inglis' letters.

Perhaps Cooper realised at one stage that the War was not going to be won; after Burgoyne's defeat at Saratoga, his correspondents' predictions regarding the war rested upon the removal of Gen. William Howe and a rejuvenation of the war effort. Inglis' initial appraisal of Saratoga, however, proved lacking: "This unfortunate Affair, although of little Consequence in the general Contest, yet will greatly animate the Rebels of New England, as it has done already, & will be severely felt by us here." Saratoga, however, did have an impact, and in our next piece we shall touch upon how Loyalists came to comprehend the severity and meaning of Gen. Burgoye's loss. After all, one month after Inglis' appraisal, he changed his view: "I informed you of Genl. Burgoyne's Disaster, which has greatly changed the State of Things in the Northern Revolted Colonies." He was, indeed, correct.

...Christopher F. Minty, Ph.D. Candidate, U of Stirling

A side note

I have recently begun teaching American history at the University of Edinburgh and I have been lucky enough to have been given complete jurisdiction over how I run my seminar groups (sections/tutorials, ect.) I have subsequently decided to dedicate two classes relating to the development and subsequent growth of Loyalism and Revolutionary Patriotism throughout the thirteen colonies, but with a specific focus on New York as it is my "specialist" area. I am hoping to explore reasons behind motivation and the mobilisation, whilst touching upon the importance of religion, culture, ideology and ethnicity, if any. I am thoroughly looking forward to it and will happily correspond with any fellow readers of Loyalist Trails if you have any suggestions regarding these classes (which don't run for a few weeks yet!).

Presidential Peregrinations: Grand River Branch

I appreciated the invitation to attend a Grand River Branch meeting in Brantford on 16 September. In addition to presenting a Loyalist Certificate to Brooke Skelton, to conversations with members and guests before and after the meeting, to a delicious buffet supper, it was particularly rewarding to hear Bill Terry bring humour to the issue of annual fees. As a descendant, I also had the opportunity to talk about Loyalist Jacob DeCou III UE and his connection to the War of 1812 and Laura Secord.

Read more about the branch visit with photos.

...Robert McBride UE, President UELAC

Presidential Peregrinations: Prairie Region Mini-Conference

The Prairie Region Mini-Conference on the weekend of Sept 21 to 23 in Regina was a good gathering. We enjoyed meeting with and discussing affairs of the Association with those who attended. There were presentations and discussions about membership, UELAC finances and donations, the relationship of branches, regions and the association. A visit to the RCMP museum, ancestor presentations, good food and lots of networking rounded out a good gathering.

Read more about the branch visit with photos.

...Robert McBride UE, President UELAC

From the Twittersphere and Beyond

Additions to the Loyalist Directory

As time permits, we add information to the Loyalist Directory. The latest additions and updates are as follows:
- Keller, Christian - from Arnold Weirmeir - Ross, Donald - from Elizabeth Maize

Queries

Stephen Middaugh UEL and Grandson Peter Rambo

We are trying to connect STEPHEN MIDDAUGH UEL to his grandson PETER RAMBO via MARY MIDDAUGH and ELIAS RAMBO

Stephen MIDDAUGH UEL (Butler Rangers & Munro's Coy of the King's Royal Regiment of NY) b. 1749 Marbletown, Ulster County, New York, d. 28 Aug 1809 Nelson Twp., District of Gore, UC.

He married 1st an unknown Mary. Their children:

  1. MARY b. abt. 1775 d abt. 1874-5 married ELIAS RAMBOUGH or RAMBO b. abt. 1765 (MARY's UC Land Petition - Home Dist. named her father as STEPHEN MIDDAUGH and her husband as ELIAS RAMBO).
  2. John

Stephen's 2nd marriage Feb 1784 Montreal, Canada (Quebec) Elizabeth Beacock. Their children:

  1. Neeltjen b. c. 1784 m. Richard Carroll
  2. Stephen b. c. 1786 m. Elizabeth Babcock
  3. Catherine b. c. 1787 m. James Depew
  4. Anne b. c. 1788-1793 m. Everett Edward Mudge
  5. Elizabeth b. c. 1790-1800 m. John McMullan
  6. Jacob b. c. 1800 m. Mary Williams
  7. John B. b. c. 1802
  8. Margaret b. c. 1804 m. Pierre Thibaudeau
  9. Robert b. c. 1805 Nancy Mary Udell

I believe Peter Rambo was a son of MARY MIDDAUGH and ELIAS RAMBO.

PETER RAMBO: (b. 03 Oct 1803 Binbrooke Twp., d. Bet. 29 - 30 Sep 1872 Saginaw, Saginaw Co., Michigan) m. 26 Feb 1829 Binbrooke Twp., Wentworth Co.) EUPHEMIA NANCY DURFEY b. 29 Nov 1812 Binbrooke Twp., UC.

Their Children were Mary, SARAH AMANDA (b. 07 Oct 1831; d. 17 Oct 1916 m. 1st George Smith & 2nd William Clarkson), Catherine, Stephen, Euphemia Fanny, Peter, Elias, James, William, Jeddediah, Nancy Agnes, Martha Susannah

We are missing any confirmation. let alone proofs, of the Stephen - Mary - Peter connection. Any information would be appreciated.

...Alice A. Walchuk, Manitoba Br. Genealogist

Lucinda Thompson's Parents in the Bay of Quinte Area

A friend, Marlene Rodgers, has recorded thousands of ancestors in her computer with footnotes and family charts. She has several UEL certificates adorning her office wall and a vast network of genealogy friends. But she has a problem. She can't find the parents of her 2x great grandmother Lucinda Ann Thompson. An ongoing sense of frustration, she says that Lucinda "seemingly dropped out of the sky" into Prince Edward County. It is not an unusual problem. Years ago I remember the old folks would say that "so and so", meaning one of the neighbours, was found out in the rhubarb patch.

To help out, I tried to find a mother and father for Lucinda. After all, I have papers and books and maps of the Quinte area, and Ancestry on my computer. I found at least 10 Thompson families who had arrived in the Bay of Quinte area before the war of 1812. However, I was in real trouble when I discovered twenty or thirty personal family trees on Ancestry.ca which had Lucinda Ann as an ancestor, and none of them had her parents' names. Diddling around on little bits of information here and there, I found a few clues, but I had this nagging thought that Lucinda didn't want anybody to know who her parents really were.

There are four or five clues to help identify Lucinda Ann Thompson.

No. 1 is from her death record in Denbigh Twp., Lennox and Addington County. Her son Samuel reported that she was born in Prince Edward County on the 20th October, 1817 and that she died at 85 years in Denbigh on the 30th March, 1901 at Concession 12, Lot 17.

No. 2 clue is about a certain John Benjamin Thompson, who could easily be Lucinda's younger brother; He was born in 1822 in Adolphustown, but with no parents named in any of his records. He was living in Prince Edward County as a young man and married Louisa Wellbanks of South Marysburgh in about 1840. Three of their children were baptised in Marysburgh before they moved to Denbigh Twp.in the 1860s. His death record of 25th May in 1883 was reported by his son George. This John Benjamin Thompson was 61 when he died in Denbigh Twp. I thought I could find him as a little boy in the 1822 Census of Adolphustown.

No. 3 clue is from her marriage record, discovered by Marlene's cousin in a family bible. She married Matthew Pryn Rogers in Kingston on 12th of May, 1839. The witnesses were Isaac B Thompson and William Denn. Matthew was a member of the 4th Incorporated Militia at the time and Isaac B. Thompson may have been her brother. Just by chance I found the burial record for a certain Isaac B Thompson in Picton, listed in Conger's Old White Chapel records. He died in 1842 at 28 years and his parents were John and Mary. There was no cause of death or place of residence. He was born in 1814. He seemed to be her brother.

Lucinda and Matthew's children were born in Hungerford Twp., in Hastings County. In the 1861 Census they were at Concession 9, part of Lot 17, with 10 acres. This land is a few miles east of the town of Tweed and Matthew's brothers lived in this area. The prospect of free land beside the newly built Addington Road, or even on Crown Land at a dollar an acre, must have enticed them to move north. There is a beautiful description of this remote settlement in a speech given by Ebenezer Perry in 1860 as reprinted in W.S.Herrington's "History of Lennox and Addington". This settlement was located on good farm land somewhat near the Madawaska River which flows east in Renfrew County. They were living closer to Barry's Bay and Arnprior than Napanee, which was the County town of Lennox and Addington. This early settlement plan attracted young men from Prince Edward County and Leeds County. Several families came from Germany because of the publicity given overseas in the 1850s. These hardy pioneers must have thought of it as a remote Garden of Eden, a Shangri-La in the wilderness. They produced farm produce for the lumber camp kitchens. Their children and grandchildren produced many good genealogists. I have records, books, letters and photographs of these twenty or thirty families.

No. 4 clue is how families named their children. John and Louisa Thompson's oldest boy was George Henry Thompson (1848 – 1920), and their second boy was named John Isaac (1849- 1874) and then they had twins in 1852, named Mary Ann and William Anson. Louisa's parents were Mary Ann and William Wellbanks. So, you might think that John's father was called George or maybe George Henry.

Lucinda and Matthew Rogers named their first son John I or John E in 1844 and their second son Samuel James in 1847 and then they had George Timothy in 1848 and a Peter Nathaniel in 1853. (Matthew's father was James and his grandfather was Gideon Rogers. He wasn't related to James Rogers of the King's Rangers after all.) They moved north to Denbigh Twp., some time before 1870. In the 1861 Census, Matthew Pryn Rogers, the father was 43, Lucinda Ann was 36, (actually she as 44 and Matthew was 45) and these four boys were John 17, Samuel 14, George 11 and Peter 8. They had nine children in total and three of them married into the John and Louisa Thompson family. John I (1844) married a French girl, Mallissa at Tweed in 1866 and he remained in Tweed when his parents moved to Denbigh.

Lucinda possibly had other children before 1844 and this John Isaac may have been their second oldest child. However, his name could still be an indication of her father's name. I think we could use this as a clue to refer back to Isaac B. Thompson; the possible brother of Lucinda's who died in Prince Edward County in 1842.

No. 5 clue has to do with the 1891 Census. It is very strange that Lucinda Ann and Matthew are not recorded. Their son Samuel and his wife Hannah Youmans who looked after them at this time are recorded in Denbigh Twp. in 1891. This census would have given us a clue about the birth place of Lucinda's parents. It is strange that they are not recorded. Would they have gone on a trip to the States in their 70s?

That is where the search lies – a variety of clues and nothing much concrete, let alone conclusive. There were ten or twelve Thompson families in Adolphustown and Prince Edward County in the early 1800s and some of these are the first generation from the Loyalists who came in 1784. Lucinda's parents may have been the offspring of these Loyalist settlers. There are good baptism and marriage records in this 1795 to 1810 era for Loyalists, and because they were sons and daughters, we have their petitions for Loyalist land. There are five or six to consider.

In addition, there are several Thompson families from the United States who settled in the Bay of Quinte area around 1800. Some of these may have been part of the huge Quaker migration to Canada from Duchess County, New York. Perhaps Marlene's ancestor Lucinda is from one of these.

As always, any help is most appreciated.

...Jean Norry and Marlene Rodgers

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