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Loyalist Trails UELAC Newsletter, 2014 Archive

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“Loyalist Trails” 2014-44: November 2, 2014


Anything But Jolly (Part 3 of 4), by Stephen Davidson

Jolley Allen, a loyalist merchant from Boston, had been put under house arrest in Shrewsbury in the home of his brother Lewis. All of his worldly goods had been put up for auction, only a portion of which would go to support his children who had recently lost their mother. His troubles, which had begun with a shipwreck in March of 1776, only deepened when he was confined to his brother's home that summer.

The local patriots were threatening to kill Allen, his brother, and the members of his extended family. On July 8th, three loyalists warned the Allen family that a mob had made plans to set fire to Lewis Allen's home and destroy "everything there was".

"I took this information into consideration immediately," Allen later recounted. ". . . About four o'clock, to save the house, effects, and the lives of the rest of the family that was there, I sent for two men of the town who I was informed was the head of the mob. They came to me. I begged the favor of them that I might go to Mr. Stone, their representative, which lived three miles off from my brother's They told me then that I had liberty to go to their representative, but they must go with me, which they did.

I then took leave of my brother and his family, and happy to think within myself that I had bethought myself of an expedient to save the lives of my aged mother, my brother, and the rest of the family that was in the house, to get out of the house from them, that they should not fall a sacrifice with me, as I expected nothing but present death with going out with them two men."

When Allen met Jonas Stone, he told him of the mob's intentions to burn his brother's home. After questioning the men who had escorted Allen, Stone decided it was best to keep the loyalist in his own home. "I was exceedingly sorry for him and his family, for I had not been but two days there, when the mob threatened to destroy him, and burn his house and all his effects with fire, declaring he was a greater Tory than I was for taking me in."

After eight days, Allen left to return to his brother's home. Somehow the rebel mob learned that the loyalist was heading back to Shrewsbury and swarmed around Lewis Allen's house. "They got the better of my brother, and got into the house, and was forcing their way through it, breaking everything before them. This happened about half after twelve o'clock the same day. The first and second attempt was to have been in the night; not succeeding, they was now determined to take the day, that every one should see what they did do. Hearing the scuffle and uproar in the Parlour, I came in and asked what was the matter."

On their promise not to harm him, Allen allowed the patriots to take him away. "Accordingly, I went with them, and was greatly astonished to see the number of people waiting for them. They took me and marched me back the three miles I had come that morning to Mr. Stone's house; insulted the greatest part of the way too inhuman to put pen to paper to describe, and joined by other mobs on the road, all in chorus one with another."

The mob took Allen back to Stone's home and when he asked why they had brought the loyalist to him, they said, "We are all in a body come upon that account, that he shall not live in the town of Shrewsbury, nor no king of the Tories, nor no villain like him."

Finally, after failing to find someone who would authorize Allen's execution, the mob had to be content with having the loyalist sign an agreement promising that he would stay on his brother's farm (with the exception of going to church) or "receive any punishment they shall inflict not exceeding five hundred stripes on the naked back."

The mob then marched Allen back to his brother's farm. Local loyalists visited him that night to say that earlier in the day, some members of the mob "had dug a grave six feet deep, and as I was to walk by they was to shove me in it and cover me up immediately, that none might ever know what was become of me". Unpleasant as it was for Allen to agree to be whipped if he left his brother's house, the "contract" saved him from being executed and buried by the patriot mob.

While Allen was under house arrest in Shrewsbury, his son was utterly crushed by all that had happened to his family. Jolley Jr., his father wrote, was "in the eighteenth year of his age, and never knew what hardships was before...and losing his mother, and cruelly insulted. {I} am informed he died quite broken-hearted, for want of his father being there to take his part. In this youth, I have lost a very promising and dutiful child, and my other six dear children a loving and kind brother".

By September, the General Court of Massachusetts allowed Allen to return to Cape Cod to sell his effects. At first, the loyalist was afraid that the permission was some sort of patriot scheme to lure him from his brother's house so that they could have him flogged, so he had Lewis get a pass for him. He later recalled "At this time of leaving Shrewsbury, I thought it very prudent to have my eldest daughter {Eleanor} with me, which was then in the nineteenth year of her age, for fear of any accident happening to me of being murdered on the road; hearing the mobs had broke open all the warehouses where my effects lay, and took out what they pleased, and left the remainder, by which means I thought my life in danger, was the reason of me taking my daughter with me."

Allen and Eleanor finally returned to Cape Cod, much to the astonishment of the local patriots, who did not think they would ever see the loyalist again. By early October, Allen loaded up the Esther with what remained of his worldly goods and had them sent to Boston. Upon arriving in the state capital, Allen was then directed to go back to his brother's house in nearby Shrewsbury.

Life as a prisoner of the patriots was intolerable. If Jolley Allen tried to escape Shrewsbury, he could be captured and whipped, but he had to try. Next week's Loyalist Trails will tell that tale.

To secure permission to reprint this article, email Stephen Davidson.

2015 Conference - Loyalists Come West: Police Chorus at Banquet

Read the details for Loyalists Come West - the 2015 UELAC Conference in Victoria BC May 28-30, 2015.

The 2015 Conference Committee was fortunate enough to be able to book the Greater Victoria Police Chorus for the Saturday night Gala Banquet on May 30th, 2015.

The Chorus has toured parts of Europe on four different occasions, and has sung in historic cathedrals in the Netherlands, Wales and England. They were the hosts of the first International Police Music Festival in Victoria in 1993, and again in 2000.

Read about the choir and associated details.

...David B. Clark, UE

Rte. Gilbert Hyatt Road Signs Back in Action

As President of Little Forks Branch of The United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada and of Patrimoine-Ascott-Heritage, I am thrilled and deeply grateful with the outcome to-day, for it hasn't been easy living on a "Nameless" road since the removal of the signs in 2005! The removal of the signs has been seen as a misdemeanor. The original signs were installed in 1992 while with the Township of Ascot.

It is the modern day and age when most people use the GPS for navigating and although "Rte. Gilbert Hyatt" is on the GPS there have been no road signs for nine years. Fed X and other delivery people including out-of-town visitors have experienced great difficulty. As for the Provincial Numbered Highway 143-- that stretches from Stanstead to Sorel -- ex: names are noted on several sections : Dufferin Street in Stanstead, Queen in Lennoxville, Wellington in Sherbrooke .We know that other Provincial highways carry specific names ex. Rte. 147/ Louis S. St.Laurent and Joseph Armand Bombardier on Hwy.#55 and so it only logical that this section of highway can also have a name.

On this note, I am very thankful that Mayoresse Nathalie Dupuis and Councillors have acted positively and will have this stretch of highway from the Herring Bridge, Lennoxville to the Val Estrie Road in Waterville FINALLY marked Rte. Gilbert Hyatt on the Provincial numbered Highway Rte. 143.

Since this is the 100th. Anniversary of The United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada, our project has been to honor Loyalist Gilbert Hyatt and have the highway signs put back up in his memory, We, members of Little Forks Branch are very appreciative of having received a Grant from the Association to cover the cost of these signs.

Historically speaking, Loyalist Gilbert Hyatt was awarded the survey of the Township of Ascott is certainly worthy of having his name on this highway, having first settled in Capelton in 1792 -- ( junction of Rte 143 and Rte 108), where in he had constructed a house and several barns prior to moving to Hyatt's Mills in 1796, now known as the City of Sherbrooke .The biography on Gilbert Hyatt can be found on the website " Dictionary of Canadian Biography/ Gilbert Hyatt and the last sentence sums it up, "Fortune and Fame eluded him, but his name deserves to be remembered and to be better known".

Read some press coverage. Good photo and article in French in La Presse. An English variation in The Record.

...Bev Loomis, UE, President, Little Forks Br.

A Day in Old Montreal: Bonnie Schepers

While much of my time as President of UELAC is spent at my desk, there are also days when I am called upon to meet with our members right where they live. Recently I travelled to Montreal to attend the Heritage Branch Charter Night Dinner. Thank you for the opportunity to represent the UELAC as I travel the country. And thank you to Heritage Branch for a fine day in Montreal, albeit a very different one than any of us expected. Please read more here.

...Bonnie Schepers, UE

Tea Time with Toronto Branch: Bonnie Schepers

After two days of business I had the pleasure on Sunday afternoon of speaking to members of Toronto Branch at the Toronto Branch office on Scollard Street. When Andrew Fleming tweeted that 'the silver is polished!!!' he wasn't kidding. For more on our afternoon please see photos and text here.

...Bonnie Schepers, UE

Chilliwack Branch marks 100 Years with 100 members

Fourteen years ago, the UELAC Dominion Council struck a committee to develop ideas for the celebration of the first 100 years of The United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada. Since then, the branches across Canada planned commemorative projects such as burial site marking, branch history books and special events for members and community. However it was only earlier this year that the Chilliwack Branch developed a most successful short term project to mark the centenary. They decided to set a goal of 100 members to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the UELAC.

With a membership of 66 by December 31, 2013, this would be a big challenge for the executive and members alike. However, if you know the power of positive thinking and Shirley Dargatz, President of the Chilliwack Branch, the possibility of failure was not even considered. As of October 31, the goal of one member for every year of UELAC was met with an increase of over 150%. No trick, but a definite treat!

Congratulation to Chilliwack Branch on this unique celebratory project.


Loyalist Gazette Update

The Fall 2014 issue of the Loyalist Gazette will go to the mailing house at the end of this week. It will probably be mailed sometime in the next week or so.

The digital version will be available to members and subscribers who have registered by mid-week ie around Nov 11-12.

Digital Loyalist Gazette

The Loyalist Gazette 2014 issues are available in digital format to members and subscribers. If you would like to receive the digital version and have not already requested, just go to Request the Digital Version.

The 2013 Spring and Fall issues are publicly available to all.

...Bob McBride, Editor, Loyalist Gazette

Where in the World?

Where are Bicentennial Branch member Bonnie Schepers and Calgary Branch members Barb & David Hongisto?

To participate, submit a photo of yourself in UELAC promotional gear at a place of some note and tell us where it is. If you are a member of a branch, please indicate that as well – send to Jennifer Childs.

Region and Branch Bits

From the UELAC Branches, News and Events of interest to others:

  • All About Books Internet Cafe, 126 King Street, E., Gananoque, ON will host authour Jennifer DeBruin on Sat Nov 8 and Author Peter C. Newman on Sunday Nov 9 - read details here.
  • Ontario Municipal Elections Good News. Long time Col. John Butler Niagara Branch member Sandra Easton was elected Mayor of Lincoln on October 27th. Congratulations Sandra! Sandra is the daughter of member Margaret Romagnoli and sister of members Sharon MacDonald, Susan, Dale and David Romagnoli. Their proven ancestor is John Freel. Submitted by Rod and Bev Craig, Col. John Butler Branch
  • War Story III Productions Inc. produces War Story episodes which are broadcast on the History Channel. Interviews with Okill Stuart will be featured in D-Day + One (Sunday 9 Nov at 8:00pm) and Falaise --The Corridor of Death (Monday Nov 1 at 8:00pm). Read more items here. Submitted by Adelaide Lanktree, Sir John Johnson Branch

From the Twittersphere and Beyond

  • Looking for information on Six Nations Of The Grand River? Try here.

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