“Loyalist Trails” 2006-08 February 19, 2006

In this issue:
Conference 2006 Update
See “Fort Johnson” on the Mohawk Valley Bus Trip Oct 1-4, 2006
UELAC “Promotions” Items and Dominion Council
A Visit Planned to North Carolina
New England States Historical & Genealogical Conference: Nashua New Hampshire
Doris Ward’s Nelles Connections
British, German, and Loyalist Officers in the American Revolution
Celebrating Heritage Days
      + Black Loyalists in Brampton
      + Christiana Wyman, Peter Wyman


Conference 2006 Update

Conference 2006 June 1-4 Toronto: Update and Query

“A Capital Experience”: Until the American Revolution, the European population in what is now Ontario was small. The settlement of many Loyalists in the then western-part of Quebec created and drove the demands for “government” that would be more English-based than was the existing governance of the Colony of Quebec. The division of Quebec and creation of Upper Canada in 1791 and a first government in Newark in 1792 under John G. Simcoe led to a more permanent seat of government in Toronto, renamed York, in 1793.

Many of our Loyalist ancestors, and their descendants, who came to Central Canada lived under government based in York. The first Parliament Buildings of Upper Canada were built here. When Simcoe moved here, he had Fort York constructed. Our “Evening at Fort York” will be special, with a touch of class – think period clothing, costume parade, hot and cold served hors d’oeuvres, linen-draped tables, a great out-door setting (unless inclement weather should drive us indoors), artillery displays, tours of the Fort, and much more.

Gov. Simcoe Branch proudly hosts, with much appreciated assistance from Toronto Branch, our 2006 UELAC Conference.

“Period Clothing”: We encourage people to dress in period clothing for as many events as you wish. At both the Fort York evening and the Gala Banquet, we plan a “costume” parade. So wear those special outfits at one, or the other, or both.

Share a room: Rebecca Fraser, Vancouver, has reserved a non-smoking twin bed room (May 31st to June 4th) and wishes to share. Email {rebecca_fraser AT telus DOT net}

Questions and clarification to Doug Grant at doug.grant@insurance-canada.ca or 416-921-7756

See “Fort Johnson” on the Mohawk Valley Bus Trip Oct 1-4, 2006

Sir William Johnson came to the Mohawk Valley in 1738 from Ireland to manage his Uncle Peter Warren’s estate. He originally lived at Warren bush on the southern bank of the Mohawk River between Fort Hunter and Amsterdam. Sir William later moved to the north bank of the Mohawk River and build a series of three homes. His first north bank home was built just west of Amsterdam. He gave it to his son-in-law, Daniel Claus. It was destroyed by fire.

His second north bank home, Fort Johnson was built about a mile further west in 1749. From here Sir William gradually amassed huge land holdings and became one of the wealthiest and most prominent citizens of the Mohawk Valley. He also obtained great influence among the Indians.

Sir William Johnson gave Fort Johnson to Sir John Johnson when Sir William and his third wife, Molly Brant, sister of Loyalist Indian Chief, Joseph Brant, moved to Johnson Hall in Johnstown in 1763. Sir John Johnson was the son of Sir William and Catherine Weisenberg. She was a run away indentured servant. Sir William later bought her freedom for five pounds. Some writers instead say that Sir William Johnson took Catherine from her original owner, Mr. Phillips after Sir William beat him up. She died in 1759 and is buried somewhere on the grounds. Her tombstone is thought to be the footstep to the entrance to Fort Johnson. Later Sir John and his wife Mary Watts moved to Johnson Hall after Sir William died suddenly at an Indian Treaty Conference in 1774.

Today, Fort Johnson is a grey limestone, three storied Georgian style house facing south towards the Mohawk River. Its interior architecture is virtually the same as when Sir William Johnson and his son, Sir John Johnson lived there. Four of the rooms have been furnished to reflect life in the eighteenth century. The Montgomery County Historical Society now maintains and operates this historic Loyalist site.

There are now thirty-three booked for the 2006 Loyalist Mohawk Trip along with five more who are tentative. The trip now definitely appears to be a go.

George Anderson

UELAC “Promotions” Items and Dominion Council

The Spring UELAC Council meeting with representatives from across the country will be held in Toronto on March 4. The Promotions Committee will have some items on display there.

If you would like some items for yourself or your branch and someone from your area is attending Council, see if they have some room to carry back a few items from the Promotions Committee and save shipping costs. Items like plates, glassware, pins, licence plate frames, decals. coasters etc. are available. They also have some clothing – hats, bucket, jackets, some shirts, etc. in stock. To arrange for pick-up at Dominion Council, contact Noreen Stapley to make arrangements. Visit the online catalogue – prices of several clothing items have increased this year so check prices with Noreen for the correct price and availability – the catalogue will be updated before too long.

A Visit Planned to North Carolina

We received your interesting letter via Loyalist Trails (“A Bit of Loyalist Canada in North Carolina,” from Doris Ward, Feb 12 issue). My ancestors were Palatine Loyalists, and migrated to Canada from New York State and perhaps from Pennsylvania originally being German (Pennsylvania Deutsch) . My maternal ancestors were Shaver (Schaeffer) and my father’s maternal ancestors were Hagerman (originally Hagermann). They migrated north sometime either during or right after the Revolutionary War. They came to Ontario as did my father’s paternal ancestors ( Davy) who came from the Mohawk Valley area of New York. It sounds like you have a formidable organization and library and you are to be commended on your enthusiasm and success! My wife Carol is an American who became a Canadian citizen and later learned that she is herself a Loyalist descendant – from several sources! We have tentative plans to visit friends in Arden N.C sometime in April and if we do come we will try to visit your library!

…Peter Davy, UE, Kingston and District Branch

New England States Historical & Genealogical Conference: Nashua New Hampshire

4 March 2006 – Saturday, 8 AM to 5 PM (snow date 18 March 2006) at Horse Pond Fish & Game Club of Nashua, New Hampshire. In addition to details in a previous issue, the presentation topics now include: Loyalists of New Hampshire, French/Metis Marriages, Genealogy of Benedict Arnold, New Hampshire Map Resources, Migration Patterns Through New Hampshire, Old New Hampshire Newspapers, History of the Museum at Tamworth NH, Cluster Genealogy: Researching your ancestor’s collateral relatives, friends, neighbors and associates for research success, New Hampshire Cemeteries and Overview Topics of New Hampshire Black History.

For a full description and registration information, go to www.bunnellgenealogybooks.citymaker.com and on left side, mid-page, select the button “NE States Gen/His Conf”

…Paul Bunnell, UE

Doris Ward’s Nelles Connections

It took years of searching for the ancestry of Nancy Nelles because wherever we inquired the answer always was that she was of “the other Nelles family!” Charles Courtnage finally tracked the land records and identified her as the oldest daughter of William Nelles, of Haldimand, later of Grimsby. The families there always thought of her as an Indian but of course she was full blooded German Palatine all the way back to the boat.

My Loyalist Ancestor would have to be Major William Henry Nelles who left his home in Stone Arabia to be associated with Sir William Johnson and the Tory side of the question at the time of the outbreak of the American Revolution. The connecting generations are his son William Nelles of Grimsby, and William’s oldest daughter Nancy Nelles Barber as you will see by the Palatine Story CD. Nancy’s mother was Mary Elizabeth Sitts, taken as a captive by the Indians and turned over to the Mississauga Indians between Hamilton and Toronto. Rescued by Major Nelles but with no surviving parents in Minden on the Mohawk, she was sheltered by the Nelles Family in Haldimand County. I don’t suppose she would qualify as UEL, as she wasn’t in Upper Canada willingly, and since she wasn’t married by European Civil or Church law. Indian marriages were constituted by an exchange of gifts which was probably the case.

William’s mother (the Major’s first wife and mother of William) never left the States, so she wouldn’t count. The Major’s parents, William and Sabina (Deichart) Nellis were patriots.

In Delhi, Norfolk County, the first wife of John Cline (1800 – pioneer) was Jane Derrickson and that family were United Empire Loyalists from Orange County, North Carolina. John and Jane received UEL land from her father, but Jane died, his second wife died, and then he sold the property and moved to Boston where he married Miriam Barber (1800 pioneers from New Jersey). I am from that marriage.

The wife of John’s son the Rev. Dr. Wm Henry Cline was Emily Crawford, but she was brought directly to Canada from Belfast of a Scots-Irish lineage. Dad married German American-New England (to the Mayflower) so there is no connection there. My husband was from the American south with both Tory and Patriot ancestry but the Tory was hanged here after the Battle of King’s Mountain.

So that leaves me with Nancy Nelles Barber, who obtained UEL land on being the daughter of William. I have copies of the legal papers she used to prove her identity.

I am encouraging several of my Canadian cousins to join your group. I have supplied them with a book on the ancestry of Miriam Barber Cline which includes the story of the Nelles lineage.

Doris Cline Ward

British, German, and Loyalist Officers in the American Revolution

The names of over 2,500 men who served the British cause during the American Revolution.

Go to freesurnamesearch.com and search for this link: “British, German, and Loyalist Officers in the American Revolution. The names of over 2,500 men who served the British cause during the American Revolution”. Alternatively, click here to view the text file.


An index compiled by Jay Hall from A List of General and Staff Officers on the Establishment in North America, 1755-1782 (originally produced by the British War Office)


This list is an index to “A List of General and Staff Officers on the Establishment in North America, 1755-1782”, which was originally published some 200 years ago. A copy of this invaluable book is on file at the Public Record Office in Kew, Surrey (as part of file W.O. 65), and a microfilm copy of the book is available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, and at its associated Family History Centers.

The original _List_ includes the names of over 2,500 men who served the British cause during the American Revolution as officers in British, German, and provincial loyalist regiments. The _List_ includes 84 pages of information, organized by military unit. For this index I’ve used the name, rank, and military unit as given for each man, along with the number of the page on which his name appears. However, you should remember that this is only an index. The original text includes additional data, such as dates of commissions, that do not appear in this index, so you should consult it for more complete information.

While I have routinely abbreviated some ranks and unit names, I have attempted to be faithful in recording the names exactly as shown in the original. All too often the “List”‘s compiler’s contented themselves with a surname and a rank, without giving a christian name, and these are so indicated in the index (e.g., “Smith, _____”).

Once you have located your ancestor’s name in this index, there are a variety of sources you can consult for information on him and his military career. Some of these appear below. Generally, British records will be found in the Public Record Office, while German records will be in the Staatsarchiv, and records on provincial troops will be in the National Archives of Canada. Some records for all three groups, as well as records on American troops, can be found in the Family History Library.

…submitted by Fraser Carr

Celebrating Heritage Days

On Saturday Feb 18, Hamilton Branch had a booth and Loyalist display in both Hamilton and Burlington.

HAMILTON HERITAGE FAIR & MARKETPLACE was at HAMILTON City Hall with lots of entertainment and historical displays. The annual presentation of Volunteer awards, sponsored by the Hamilton Wentworth Heritage Association, included an award to our immediate past President, Lloyd H. Oakes U.E.. Hamilton Branch volunteers staffed their display to encourage those with Loyalist ancestry to record and preserve this important heritage.

In BURLINGTON, Burlington-based members supported Martha Hemphill UE as she hosted their display at the Burlington Public Library with speakers, music, scavenger hunt! A past president of Hamilton Branch, Fred Hayward UE was one of the speakers as he personified, in costume, his Loyalist EMBURY ancestor.

Toronto Branch staffed a display for several days at Square One in Mississauga. This area was part of the Home District, which is the geographical area in which the Branch is identifying Loyalists who settled.

Gov. Simcoe Branch had a one-day display in NW Toronto at YorkGate Mall as part of the Toronto Historical Association’s Heritage weekend displays. On Saturday, a family day was held for members and guests. The Manning family, reenactors, represented the KRRNY. On Monday and Tuesday, the branch will display at Toronto City Hall in the rotunda.



Black Loyalists in Brampton

My name is Erica Phillips and I am a writer with the Brampton Guardian. I am researching the history of African Canadians in Brampton and thought your association might be of help. There seems to have been blacks in Guelph, and Oakville, and Queen’s Bush, and possibly Caledon. So far I can’t find anything about an early black presence in Brampton. Do you know if there were Black United Empire Loyalists in Brampton? Or do you have any suggestions?

…Erica Phillips, Special Features Writer, Brampton Guardian, {ephillips AT thebramptonguardian DOT com}

Christiana Wyman, Peter Wyman

I am tiring to find a connection to and information about the following:

Christiana Wyman, B. 1802, of Stormont, Ontario. DUE. I have researched Christina Wyman and found she is the daughter of UEL. She received a FG in the township of Tyendinaga, ON. The Riverview Cemetery in Shannonville ON told me there is a Christina Wiman and a Tina Wyman buried there also. Tina’s Death 1802, is the same year Christina is born.

Peter Wyman, Prince Edward County, ON. (Tyandnaga) I am thinking that Peter Wyman is my GGG Grandfather, daughter to Almira Wyman, daughter to Elizabeth Beckwith. These ladies I know are my Grandmothers.

All buried in the Riverview Cemetery in Shannonville On.

…Karen Mitchinson {kmitchinson AT cogeco DOT ca}