“Loyalist Trails” 2007-20: May 20, 2007

In this issue:
“At The End Of The Trail”, UELAC Conference: Did You Know? – more about Windsor Area
Loyalists’ Lineages II: Special Sale by Toronto Branch
Index to 1786 McNiff Maps (the Loyalist Maps)
Another Forgotten Loyalist Hero: Titus Cornelius (Colonel Tye)
Submissions for Fall 2007 Gazette by June 15
The Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University Grows Again
Wesleyan Methodist Baptisms 1829-1910
Offer to Check Records on Several CDs
June 19 Loyalist Day in Saskatchewan and Ontario
Participating in DNA Projects; Read the Fine Print
U.S. descendants mark historic link to William Gage: the Hamilton Spectator
Battle of Plattsburgh Association Hosts Plattsburgh Military Timeline
UELAC Website Updates: Loyalist Monuments
UELAC Website Updates: Loyalist Directory
      + How many Loyalists, other than First Nations Loyalists, Accompanied Captain Brant into the Grand River Valley?
      + Ladies’ Loyalist Straw Hats & Knitted Shawls


“At The End Of The Trail”, UELAC Conference: Did You Know? – more about Windsor Area

– Sandwich synonymous with liberty because it was the first step after leaving the oppression of slavery in the United States.

– An increased number of Fugitive Slaves from the southern United States fled to Essex County during the 1840’s and the majority of these fugitives settled in the township of Colchester. Large concentrations of Black residents also settled in the townships of Malden, Anderdon, and Maidstone and in the towns of Amherstburg and Sandwich.

– Sandwich First Baptist Church was built entirely by freed slaves in Sandwich. The original church (c 1820) was housed in a log cabin. When the congregation decided to replace it with the brick structure, every able-bodied male member of the congregation was required to make a certain number of bricks using clay from the Detroit River. Many of these bricks were made by slaves escaping through the Underground Railroad as payment for a meal and safe haven that had been provided by a member of the congregation. The church was completed in1851 after eight years of hard work.

– Mary Anne Shadd was the editor of the first abolition paper in Canada and the first woman publisher in North America.

– The Provincial Freeman was the name of the publication.

Loyalists’ Lineages II: Special Sale

Toronto Branch is pleased to offer to your Branch and its Membership a special sale price on sets of Loyalists’ Lineages II. These sets are hard bound, durable, and printed on acid-free paper. They are an excellent gift, and a valuable research tool. This is your opportunity to obtain sets at a most exceptional price, only until June 30, 2007.

Price for 1 set $62.50 (sets only)

Price for 3 or more sets $31.25 per set.

GST and shipping extra and will be quoted on request.

To order or request a shipping cost quote, contact Toronto Branch:

T (416)489–1783, F (416)489-3664, or {TorontoUEL AT bellnet DOT ca}

If you or a friend will be at the “End of the Trail” Conference in Windsor May 31 – June 3, your copy can be picked up there by prior arrangement, but your request must be made by Monday May 28.

…Ed Cass U. E.

Index to 1786 McNiff Maps (the Loyalist Maps)

An addendum to last week’s announcement, the CD, for $25., will be available at the UELAC Conference in Windsor (from Bev and Rod Craig) and at the OGS Seminar in Ottawa, June 1-3, at the Guild of One Name Studies marketplace table.

…Ed Kipp, on the OGS Seminar organizing committee

Another Forgotten Loyalist Hero: Titus Cornelius (Colonel Tye)

Despite the fact that his Quaker religion forbade the owning of slaves, John Corlies of Shewsbury, New Jersey had four Africans in his possession — that is, until November, 1775. It was in that month that Lord Dunmore announced that freedom would be granted to any rebel’s slaves who joined the British forces. Titus Cornelius, one of the Quaker’s four Africans, made a break for freedom. No one at the time would have imagined that Titus would become one of the greatest loyalist heroes of the American Revolution — a hero who has been forgotten by those who call themselves United Empire Loyalists.

Posing as a freeman, Titus was able to make his way down the coast to Virginia, a task made easier by the fact that he had committed a map of the region to memory. Once he arrived in Virginia, Titus joined Dunmore’s Ethiopian Regiment. He eventually returned to New Jersey when his regiment had to flee starvation and smallpox in Virginia.

Only in his early twenties, Tye first saw action in June of 1778 at the Battle of Monmouth. There he captured a captain of the local militia. This instantly brought him to the attention of the British commanders. Here, indeed, was a soldier of skill and ability.

In the succeeding months, Titus became known as Colonel Tye, the terror of rebels throughout Monmouth County. He commanded a band of as many as 800 loyalists who were both black and white. Tye’s rank of colonel was an honourary one; the British did not appoint Africans as officers. Nevertheless, the fact that Tye was allowed to use this title indicates the high degree of respect that his leadership skills commanded.

Tye’s knowledge of the rivers and swamplands of Monmouth County allowed his men to appear out of nowhere and just as quickly disappear. Their “cow-boy” raids were a combination of guerrilla warfare, revenge against old slave masters, and banditry. The targets of their raids ranged from military outposts to plantations as well as individual rebels’ homes.

In July of 1779 Tye’s men attacked his master’s hometown of Shrewsbury. They carried off two of its citizens as well as 80 head of cattle, 20 horses, furniture and clothing. The successes enjoyed by Tye and his men fueled the fear that blacks were going to massacre rebel slave owners. Colonel Tye’s reputation alone had a negative psychological effect on his enemies.

In the winter of 1779 Tye joined an elite corps of Black Loyalists known as the Black Brigade who worked with the Queen’s Rangers in protecting New York City — as well as plundering wood and food. Tye was now more feared than any other loyalist leader of his day, whether black or white.

The African colonel led his men on a number of sensational raids in the summer of 1780. On June 9 his men assassinated the much hated Joseph Murray who summarily executed any loyalists he captured. Three days later, Tye’s men captured a militia leader and twelve of his men, destroyed their cannon, stole their horses, and deprived General Washington of needed reinforcements. Tye’s success in battle encouraged more slaves to side with the British, inspiring them by his liberation of Africans and raids upon slave owners. In desperation, New Jersey’s governor invoked martial law, but it did little to stop the flow of blacks to British-controlled New York.

In the two years following the Battle of Monmouth, Tye had become a legendary soldier in the Revolution, feared in the camps of the rebels and acclaimed among the loyalist forces. Once seen as a bandit and a nuisance, Colonel Tye now had to be considered an important military threat.

On September first of 1780 Tye led what should have been a simple raid on the home of Josiah Huddy, a man deeply hated by the loyalists. For two hours Huddy and his servant woman held off Tye’s raiders until they were flushed out of the house with fire. During the attack, Tye was shot in the wrist by a musket ball. The seemingly minor wound became infected, developed into gangrene and then tetanus. Lacking proper medical attention, Colonel Tye died a painful death within a week’s time.

Tye’s reputation, however, lived on . Even patriot soldiers conceded that he was a “brave and courageous man”. Colonel Tye’s reputation was not forgotten by African-Americans who remained enslaved long after the Revolution. One historian describes a festival in which the slaves of a plantation reenacted a military drill that featured a “General Ti”. No doubt this was a part of a lingering folk memory of Colonel Tye, an African who, in the attempt to become free, had sided with the enemies of slave owners.

Today Tye is recognized by historians as one of the most effective loyalist guerilla leaders of the Revolution. It is unfortunate that his name is such an unfamiliar one to the descendants of the loyalists who fought under his command.

…Stephen Davidson

Submissions for Fall 2007 Gazette by June 15

By now our readership should have received their copy of the Spring 2007 issue of The Loyalist Gazette. We hope that you enjoyed it. Because of family commitments, unfortunately I will not be available in July and August to work on the Fall 2007 issue. Thus, please send all submissions for this issue to me by June 15th, as announced in the Spring 2007 issue. All submissions should be sent to my new e-mail address: gazette.editor@nexicom.net as I have changed Internet Service Providers. It is appreciated if articles could be composed in Microsoft Word and photos sent as jpeg attachments with at least 300 dpi resolution.

…Robert McBride, UE, Editor, Loyalist Gazette

The Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University Grows Again

The Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University are pleased to announce the recent addition of some 70 reels of microfilm to the collection. Included in this are the State Minute Books, 40 reels of microfilm, covering of two sections of records from the National Archives.

  • RG1, L1 Contains Quebec, Lower Canada, Upper Canada, Canada Executive Council, Minute Books (on Land Matters) 1787-1867.
  • RG1, E1 Contains State Minute Books, Council of Quebec 1764-1775, Legislative Council of Quebec 1775-1791, Executive Council of Quebec 1776-1791, Lower Canada Executive Council 1791-1841, Upper Canada Executive Council 1791-1841, Canada, Executive Council 1841-1867.

In addition we have purchased The Merritt Family Papers, the Claus Family Papers, Jarvis-Powell Family Papers, and the Nelles Family Papers. All these families were prominent Niagara Loyalists.

Through your kind donations, and the sale of Butler’s Rangers Nominal Roll we have purchased and donated to Brock University 142 rolls of microfilm pertaining to United Empire Loyalists. The Loyalist Collection is located in the Special Collections of the James A. Gibson Library, and is available for research by anyone interested.

Click here for a complete online index to the collection.

…Ed Scott UE, Chairman the Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University, {escott5 AT cogeco DOT ca}

Wesleyan Methodist Baptisms 1829-1910

In 1843, the Wesleyan Methodist Church in Canada resolved that a General Register of births and baptisms be kept at the Conference office in Toronto . At the end of the year, each minister returned a record book to the Conference office and entries were copied into the General Register. The result is four volumes, 1829 to 1910, covering mainly Ontario but also a few from Quebec, Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Experienced volunteers have transcribed and indexed the volumes. This transcription, co-sponsored by the United Church of Canada/Victoria University Archives and the OGS, is grouped according to geographical counties and districts and sold by OGS branches and sister societies in hardcopy and on microfiche. For details see the OGS site in the store section. There is one volume for Out-of-Ontario records. These microfiche and hardcopies are recent and include a number of records which appear to have not been included in the original microfilms done some time ago.

Based on the original microfilms, you can check this site.

[submitted by Bev Loomis, UE]

Offer to Check Records on Several CDs

I have several CDs in my collection containing information from the early years in the US and Canada. I have a LOOK-UP page listing these CDs and plan on adding my books when I get the list completed. Click here for the list.

You will find on this page that Beth is willing to check out a name there. As this is purely on a voluntary basis, please follow the instructions on Beth’s page, and in consideration of her time, be judicious in your requests. Willing to help and share info.

…Beth {GlassbyBeth AT aol DOT com}

June 19 Loyalist Day in Saskatchewan and Ontario

Several branches will be celebrating Loyalist Day with a ceremony or service.

Hamilton Branch

The ceremony honouring our Loyalist ancestors, held annually in Prince’s Square, 50 Main Street, East, Hamilton will be at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 19. This year we are pleased to welcome Canadian Lawrence Hill, author of The Book of Negroes which chronicles the life of a female slave from Africa to New York and later to New Brunswick at the time of the American Revolution. Supporting our Black Loyalist theme, we are delighted that the Senior Choir of Hamilton’s Stewart Memorial Choir will bring us selections of spirituals.

…Gloria Oakes UE

[editor’s note: let me know what your branch is planning and I will include a description in the next issue]

Participating in DNA Projects; Read the Fine Print

In April we noted in OGS Seminar: “Ottawa, the Nation’s Capital for 150 Years – the Peopling of Canada” that the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation would be there collecting DNA samples.

A reader attended a recent meeting about the Sorenson project and notes “People who plan to do this ought to know (before hand) there is a waiver and disclaimer to sign (and the waiver states this information can be used for ‘insurance’ purposes and for future commercial uses. The waiver also says that the participant will not get any information back personally. This testing is for free but essentially you provide information and get nothing back and you waive away any rights to what you donate (and to what use your DNA sample is used in the future).”

Like any project to which you are contributing, DNA or otherwise, you should make yourself aware of the terms and conditions, and then participate, or not, according to your comfort level.

Just a heads up …

U.S. descendants mark historic link to William Gage: the Hamilton Spectator

One of Hamilton’s most prominent citizens has been honoured by the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) — nearly 200 years after his death. About 40 people gathered at the Stoney Creek Cemetery to witness the dedication of a grave marker for patriot William Gage. “The reason this was important was because we’re all in the business of preserving history,” said Helen Hatton, past regent of the Upper Canada chapter of DAR. Several descendants of Gage were on-hand for the ceremony, including his fourth great-grandson, also named Bill, who made the trek from California with his wife and daughter.

“We’ve got more ancestors in Upper Canada then we’ve got in our country,” Gage said. The 79-year-old discovered his connection to the Hamilton area while trying to trace his paternal genealogy. His grandfather had lived in Hamilton until he was 17, but then moved to Chicago where Gage’s father was born. Once he discovered his rich paternal heritage north of the border, he and his wife Joy, also a DAR regent in Florida, made several trips to the area. The house where his grandfather lived still stands, although it’s now apartments.

Hatton said the group is particularly proud they were able to get the words “Canadian pioneer” on the marker.

[submitted by Fred Hayward UE]

Battle of Plattsburgh Association Hosts Plattsburgh Military Timeline

The Battle of Plattsburgh Association hosts The Plattsburgh Military Timeline (1609-Present) on Saturday & Sunday May 26th & 27th. Have you ever wondered what Samuel De Champlain wore when he traversed Lake Champlain in 1609? Have you wanted to spend more time chatting with War of 1812 re-enactors, or comparing black powder muskets to 20th century firearms? Do you want to tour the Post Cemetery? Here’s your chance!

Come to the Battle of Plattsburgh Association Campus (31 Washington Rd, Old Base, Plattsburgh, NY). Tour the museum’s newest exhibit, “The Life of the War of 1812 Soldier” and visit The History Shoppe. Visit the encampment and talk to re-enactors and sutlers from a variety of time periods. Look at models of modern military items. See first hand the progression of firearms from 1609 to the Present during a firing demonstration, “From Matchlock to Cartridge Loader.” Tour the Post Cemetery on the Old Base. Refreshments will be available on site. For more information please call 518-566-1814 or visit the web site.

[submitted by William Glidden]

UELAC Website Updates: Loyalist Monuments

These additions have been made to our Loyalist Monuments section. We don’t have pictures of some of these. If you have a picture could you mail it to us and we will scan it and return same, or if you have a digital photo or could take one….

Crawford Purchase – Kingston, Ontario
The Crawford Purchase of land for Loyalist settlers from the Mississauga in 1783 was recognized as a National Historic Event of Canada in 1929. A plaque was erected in 1934 at the front entrance to the barracks at Fort Frontenac, Kingston, Ontario

Loyalist House & Plaque – Saint John
Loyalist House, known for its New England-influenced architecture, is a residence built circa 1820. It was designated as a National Historic Site of Canada in 1958.

Oro African Methodist Episcopal Church Plaque – Edgar, Ontario
This church is the last built remnant of an African Canadian community uniquely rooted in the history of the United Empire Loyalists. It was designated in 2000 and plaqued in 2003.

Early Land Survey in Ontario – Kingston
This plaque recognizes the establishment of the first four townships in Quinte area, for Loyalist settlers in 1783.

United Empire Loyalist Memorial – Colborne Township
A memorial and plaque marking the bicentennial of the arrival of the Loyalists in Ontario, located in Colborne Township, Huron County.

UELAC Website Updates: Loyalist Directory

Loyalist Directory: information about these Loyalists has been added to the directory this week:
– Ellerbeck, Emmanuel from George Ellerbeck, an update
– Markle (Maracle), Frederick from Kirsten Bowman


How many Loyalists, other than First Nations Loyalists, Accompanied Captain Brant into the Grand River Valley?

My Superviser, Paul General and I would like to pose a question for your members.

Joseph Brant and a group of Six Nations (Haudenosaunee, Ho Den Oh So Nee) or Iroquois were provided with a Land Grant by Governor Fredrick Haldimand which consisted of the entire Grand River, from its mouth to its source and six miles on either side as compensation for lands lost in the Mohawk Valley as a result of the war of 1775 -83. The grant was presented to Brant and his Mohawks and Others on October 25, 1784 by Haldimand.

The question which I am posing here is two-fold:

Were some of those Loyalists accompanying Captain Brant non-First Nations Soldiers who had served with him?

How many non-First Nations Loyalist families accompanied the Iroquois into the Grand River in 1784?

…Douglas Whitlow, Six Nations Eco Centre, {dwhitlow AT sixnations DOT ca}

Ladies’ Loyalist Straw Hats & Knitted Shawls

Several members of the Victoria Branch are making costumes/period clothing. Where would one acquire one of the plain straw hats I’ve seen women wearing over their caps?

Also I was going to knit a shawl, but I’ve been looking at all the pictures I can find of reenactors and others in their costumes, and I’ve never seen anyone wearing a knitted shawl. Were the women too busy knitting socks for their many children and didn’t have the time to knit frivolous garments such as shawls?

…Catherine Fryer UE {cfryer AT shaw DOT ca}