“Loyalist Trails” 2012-04: January 22, 2012

In this issue:
Welcome to Event Central — The War of 1812 Bicentennial Calendar
A Dozen Loyalist Libraries: Part One — by Stephen Davidson
Richard Carman (1757 – 1817) by George McNeillie
Biggest Loyalist Families – Daniel Burritt Sr. (12 Children)
Loyalist Quarterly by Paul Bunnell: January Issue Now Available
Reader Response: Liberty’s Exiles by Maya Jasanoff a Must-Read
Upper Canada Land Petitions – Library and Archives Canada
Sotheby’s Rare Silver Auction
Genealogist Unearths Contribution Made by York Militia in the War of 1812
The Tech Side: Genealogy Search Engines – by Wayne Scott, UE
Additions to the Loyalist Directory


Welcome to Event Central — The War of 1812 Bicentennial Calendar

Something 1812 for Everyone!

United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada in partnership with Dundurn Press and Northern Blue Publishing is pleased to announce the launch of Event Central – Commemorating the Bicentennial of the War of 1812.

In response to requests to provide an on-line site of current events and information on all War of 1812 Bicentennial activities, we have created an interactive community website open to Canadian and US groups and institutions who wish to publicize their commemorative activities. During the years 2012 to 2015, Event Central is your calendar of events marking the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.

You do not have to be a member to take advantage of the information provided at Event Central. Use the menu to connect with groups, museums, events and dates. Event Central offers calendar views by year, month, and day, a searchable wiki, and easy entry using a paste-able template. Interested parties can subscribe by RSS to get alerts on new pages or any changes.

We invite you to participate by adding your organization, website link and events to this simple online database as we work together to promote and celebrate the shared history of the War of 1812. To become a part of Event Central simply sign up for a User name and Password. For information on how to contribute, see How to Create and Manage Your Entries.

We look forward to your questions and comments at: warof1812online@gmail.com.

UELAC extends thanks to Alastair Sweeny VP of Northern Blue Publishing and executive producer of digital learning portal History of Canada Online.

To our Loyalist Trails readers: Please help by supporting this 1812 initiative so others can more easily discover when events are happening. Many of you are involved in War of 1812 regional groups/committees and event planning, or know of events that are planned. The value of this calendar and information resource depends on you adding events to it.

Join us in spreading the word and by recording events, so that together we can watch Event Central grow. I have already added our 2012 UELAC Conference (check out June 7-10, 2012) – if I can do it, you can too! Thank you for joining me as we create a three year resource for celebrating the Bicentennial.

…Bonnie Schepers, UE, VP – UELAC

A Dozen Loyalist Libraries: Part One — by Stephen Davidson

During the American Revolution, there were no public libraries such as we have today. The only place that someone could find a wealth of literary materials would be on the campuses of colonial colleges. If an educated man did not have access to a college library, he would have to gradually create his own personal book collection.

Thanks to the records of the loyalist compensation claims board, we have a small glimpse into the world of these private colonial libraries. Unfortunately, the references to the libraries of twelve loyalists all have to do with their theft or destruction during the American Revolution.

One New York loyalist who lost a great deal during the Revolution was Major Thomas Barclay. In 1784, he appeared before the compensation board in Halifax. Besides noting the value of hundreds of acres, four slaves and his livestock, Barclay also recorded the market worth of his library. He divided it into law books (worth 200 pounds Sterling) and books of history and other topics (worth 300 pounds sterling).

James Delancey, a member of the noted loyalist family, spoke on Barclay’s behalf, saying “he has been told he {Barclay} had a very good Library”. James Harrington had been Barclay’s neighbour. He testified that he had seen the lawyer’s library during a visit to his home. “He had a small Room full of Books”. Harrington also watched rebels sell the loyalist’s books after Barclay fled to New York City.

Daniel Hammel, another witness, knew of the reputation of Barclay’s library and understood that it was one he had inherited from his father. He remembered the sale of the “great Library of Books”. Judging by Barclay’s own testimony, he obviously had a sentimental attachment to his books. He told the commissioners that 200 pounds sterling worth of law books had been ordered from England. Governor William Tryon had given Barclay 50 pounds sterling worth of books while he was a law student and later presented him with still more books (100 pounds sterling worth) after graduation.

Barclay settled in Nova Scotia where he served in many public offices, including speaker of the house of assembly. At the end of the War of 1812, he was made a commissioner under the articles of the Treaty of Ghent.

David Zubley had grown up in South Carolina surrounded by books. His father had 1,500 volumes in his private library! Zubley was one of those who felt that Britain had no right to tax the colonies. For a time he served as the captain of a rebel militia in Georgia. However, by April of 1776, he resigned his commission. He did not approve of opposing Britain with arms and certainly did not want independence.

Zubley fled into South Carolina and took the oath of allegiance to the British government. After Georgia reverted to a loyal colony, he became a member of the colonial assembly. Within two years, Georgia was once again taken over by rebels. Zubley fled to Florida and then the Bahamas. When he stood before the compensation board after the war, the loyalist listed his losses. They included a house in Middlesex, thousands of acres of land, a wharf, a ferry, eleven enslaved Africans, and furniture.

Zubley also testified that the rebels of Georgia had destroyed his books. “They did him this damage because he had taken protection with the British.” But that was not all. The rebels had also destroyed every one of the 1,500 books in his father’s library in Parisburgh, South Carolina.

Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Robinson was another loyalist from South Carolina whose love of reading prompted him to collect a library. He recalled having “a very valuable library which he had purchased himself. Law books and books in different languages. Had sixty volumes of law books.”

This educated loyalist commanded 2,400 men during his command of Fort Ninety-Six in 1775. However during his absence, his home and all of his books were burned by rebels. In addition to taking Mrs. Robinson prisoner, the rebels also made off with the loyalist family’s clothing, furniture, harvested crops, horses, cattle and slaves. By 1789, after many adventures, the Robinsons and their daughters settled in Prince Edward Island.

Another loyalist who was proud of his library was an Irish lawyer named Thomas Phepoe. He had immigrated to Charleston, South Carolina in 1771. After the rebels seized control of the colony’s government, Phepoe became the lawyer of choice to defend loyalists against charges of sedition. The locals called him “the Torrie Lawyer”. Phepoe left for England when Charleston was evacuated in 1782.

Among the valuables that the loyalist listed among his losses at his compensation hearing in London, Phepoe mentioned a “chariot, a Negro and a pew” valued at £100 as well as “a good law library” that he valued at 30 pounds sterling.

The Rev. John Wiswall had been an Anglican missionary in Falmouth (in modern day Maine) at the outbreak of the Revolution. It did not take him long to irritate the local rebels. His continued prayers for the king’s health, his refusal to hold a fast in support of the rebel cause, and his unwillingness to collect funds for the patriots in Boston soon brought about persecution, “ill use”, and imprisonment. After escaping, he eventually sailed for England where he served as a navy chaplain for the rest of the war. Wiswall returned to North America in 1783, becoming the Anglican missionary in Cornwallis, Nova Scotia.

When the compensation board met in Halifax in 1786, Wiswall listed a store, two slaves, and furniture among his property losses. Curiously, one of the pieces of paper the loyalist fugitive took with him as he fled Falmouth was an inventory of all of the books in his library. The Anglican chaplain valued his library at 31 pounds sterling, just a little less than his two slaves (£40) and his furniture (50 pounds sterling).

Learn more about the loyalists who had libraries in next week’s Loyalist Trails.

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

Richard Carman (1757 – 1817) © George McNeillie

The line of descent in America down to Grandfather Carman seems to be this:-


1. John Carman, arrived in America Nov. 3, 1631 — Died about 1654. Florence, his widow, married in 1656 John hicks. She died before 1661.

2. John Carman, Jr., b. July 8, 1633, married about 1660. Died in 1684.

3. A Grandson of John Carman, the immigrant ancestor (name unknown) [Editor’s note — later scholarship has shown this to be Caleb Carman, b. 1656 and d. 1693 — so his parents would have had to have been married by this time. Raymond also skips a generation: Caleb and his wife Hannah Seaman — 1660 — 1695 — had a son Benjamin Carman, b. 1688, d. 1735 who married Ann Mott]

4. Benjamin Carman, b. Jan. 23, 1714. Married Mary Bedell June, 1740.

5. Richard Carman, b. Nov. 11, 1757. Came to N.B. with the Loyalists.

6. Samuel Carman, b. at Hempstead Sep. 7, 1782. Came to N.B. with his father.

The parish records of St. George’s Church in Hempstead show that on October 2, 1780, the Rev. Leonard Cutting, rector, baptized Richard Carman, an adult, and his oldest child William. The second son, Samuel (my Grandfather) was also a native of Hempstead. The rest of the family were born in New Brunswick.

Richard Carman like some of his descendants — (among them my Uncle Odber and his son Charles R. Carman) — was a lover of horses. Under date May 29, 1782, he advertises “The noted Bay Horse, Young Figure. He is a colt of Old Figure, completely built for strength, shape and action and equal to any horse within the British Lines.” [This horse the owner attempted to bring from Hempstead to St. John in 1783]. When Richard Carman was coming to New Brunswick the following spring, tradition says that he attempted to bring with him “a very valuable horse,” said to have been worth 1,000 guineas — probably the horse “Young Figure,” mentioned above. On the voyage the weather became so tempestuous that some of the cargo was thrown overboard, including the poor horse. He followed swimming in the vessel’s wake for, it is said many hours, and the passengers had hopes of rescuing him, but the gale increased and he finally disappeared, to the great regret of all on board. This incident was told me by my mother and Aunt Mary Carman on different occasions.

Richard Carman’s interest in horses continued after his arrival in New Brunswick. In the Spring of 1799 the St. John Gazette published an advertisement inserted by Richard Carman of Maugerville of the celebrated horse “Wildair.”

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

Biggest Loyalist Families – Daniel Burritt Sr. (12 Children)

Daniel Burritt Sr., with 12 children, has been added to the List of the largest Loyalist families – submitted by multiple sources. See more of the Loyalists’ biggest families – four entries so far – and note the submission guidelines if you have a large family you would like to contribute.

Loyalist Quarterly by Paul Bunnell: January Issue Now Available

The latest issue of the only U.S. journal devoted to Loyalist studies contains, among others, these topics:

– War of 1812 Events

– Upcoming Events in Canada

– Book Review: In God We Don’t Trust By David Bercot

– The New Jersey volunteers” (Loyalists) Part 1

More information including subscription details at Paul J. Bunnell’s website.

…Editor/Author Paul J. Bunnell, UE

Reader Response: Liberty’s Exiles by Maya Jasanoff a Must-Read

As a loyal reader (sadly not a “Loyalist” but simply a historian) of Loyalist Trails, may I second David Warren’s recommendation of Liberty’s Exiles, by Maya Jasanoff. Chapter by chapter, it deals with Loyalists everywhere they went in the world, their trials and turmoils and triumphs. It should be required reading for any Loyalist who takes his/her heritage seriously.

…Chris Raible

Upper Canada Land Petitions – Library and Archives Canada

Janice Nickerson wrote to say that digitized copies of the Upper Canada Land Petitions microfilms are now online at Library and Archives Canada. They are not linked to the indexes, so you have to search the index to get the film number and then go to the digitized films and scroll through to find the relevant page. Janice also notes that the Upper Canada Sundries are now included in the Land Petitions Index.

Library and Archives Canada’s announcement is here.

[submitted by Nancy Conn]

Sotheby’s Rare Silver Auction

On Jan 20 and 21, 2012, Sotheby’s was schduled to hold their auction of Important Americana. Included in this auction this year was a collection of Rare American Silver from the First Parish Church in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Although there is no stated link to later Loyalists, this auction illustrates some of the high quality workmanship available in pre-revolutionary America. If actual sales approached the pre-auction estimates, quality Americana has significant value.

Gathered first in England in March of 1630, First Parish Church is the oldest congregation in the current city of Boston, and one of the oldest in the United States. About 140 people came from Dorsetshire, England on the ship ‘The Mary and John’, and arrived in the town they named Dorchester in June of 1630. The church was the site of the first recorded Town Meeting in America in 1633, and was involved in the founding of The Mather School, Massachusetts’s first publicly-funded public elementary school, in addition to being one of the five churches that founded Harvard College.

You can read more details about the items at auction and the history of some of them, as well as of the church.

Genealogist Unearths Contribution Made by York Militia in the War of 1812

Janice Nickerson makes a living roaming around in the world of the lost, the undercover and the dearly departed. Occasionally, her work even requires her to go to war.

Nickerson is a Toronto genealogist contracted a year ago by the city to research the contribution and sacrifice made by the local militia in the War of 1812. For even now, 200 years on, it’s not known how many gallant Upper Canadian militiamen died defending their home.

Read the full article as published in the Toronto Star on Jan 13, 2011.

I know that your normal weekly post involves Loyalists but it is quite possible that some of the people who died in the battle may have been Loyalists or their children. It is certainly an interesting read, and I will look forward to seeing the book which Janice is writing.

…Michael Ball

The Tech Side: Genealogy Search Engines – by Wayne Scott, UE

There have been genealogy search engines around for quite a while. New ones are introduced on a regular basis. In an effort to help genealogy students in using dedicated search engines, the Utah Valley Technology and Genealogy Group published a document in pdf form to help students use online resources: uvpafug.org/classes/rflick/Using_Genealogical_Search_Engines.pdf. Even though this paper was published in 2005, there are a number of tips here that are still relevant.

For those researchers who use Cyndi’s List, a listing of 21 search engines is available. Some of the listed search engines offer a brief description. There are also direct links to the search engines for the researcher to use.

Google seems to be dominating the search engine field. Genealogy In Time Magazine has issued a guide to using Google Search Engines, A Genealogy Guide to 130+ Search Engines. The article illustrates the best practices for using Google for genealogical research. Many tips are offered with examples to illustrate how to target the information you are after.

Another search engine, Mocavo, is getting a lot of attention. The first iteration was published a year ago to mixed reviews. Over the past year many of the original shortcomings have been addressed. Mocavo has moved past its original free offering to an updated version that has both free services and paid options. Dick Eastman has championed this program since its inception. In his latest blog entry, the upgrades are explored. You can find his article here.

All of the usual features found in most genealogy search engines are still free. You can search on family names, locations, dates, etc. You have the option of uploading your family tree and all the names will be searched and a report sent to you. Your gedcom files can be added to the data mix so that they may aid other researchers. There can be opportunities for collaboration and information verification. Mocavo boasts an index of 6 billion names.

The paid version ($80.00 per year or $10.00 a month) offers many search enhancements such as, First Name Alternatives, Sounds Like, Intelligent Data Searching, Date Ranges and GeoSearching — US Only. The advanced name search knows that the name Elizabeth Scott can also include Liza, Liz, Beth as first names, and that Scott is a last name.

Considering the quality of the data received, and the time that is saved by using fee based advanced search engines, sometimes a free service isn’t the best way to go. There is an old adage; you get what you pay for. If you are paying nothing, don’t expect volumes of top rate information.

Some genealogy researchers will find these advanced search utilities a boon to their efforts. Others will find the website daunting. Finding a genealogy search engine that you are comfortable with can be a prime consideration. Sometimes sites such as Gen Source are ideal. Here the researcher can troll through databases of specific information such as census records. Sometimes there are just too many web pages to sift through.

Some researchers complain that when they search for a family name (such as Woods), not only would you find a number of pages that might include Tiger Woods, but also includes hundreds of pages on botany and trees, building materials, paints and finishes, etc. Articles such as the one listed above, A Genealogy Guide to 130+ Search Engines, will help frame the parameters of a usable search.

When you find a search engine that you may think fits the bill, do a Google search on that site and find out what other people think of it. You will be able to find out if the site is current or out of date. Will you have to use a proprietary file system? Is the information transferrable to your own files or genealogy programs?

Finally, always consider your options. Don’t get locked into one system, search engine, or program. Explore other sources and resources and keep up to date with trends and techniques of genealogical exploration.

You can email Wayne Scott to get in touch with questions or comments.

Additions to the Loyalist Directory

As time permits, we add information to the Loyalist Directory. The latest additions and updates are as follows:
– Mann, Edward – from David Clark
– Mann, John – from David Clark
– Mann, Thomas – from David Clark
– Mann, William – from David Clark