“Loyalist Trails” 2019-22: June 2, 2019

In this issue:
2019 UELAC Conference: It’s A Wrap … Almost
Loyalist Scholarship Challenge: 12 Days and Counting
The Fourteen Tisdales – A Loyalist Family Saga, Part 3: The Upper Canadian Clan, by Stephen Davidson
The Loyalist Mapping Project: Can you Help?
Quakers who were UE Loyalists, by Randy Saylor
JAR: Quebec Town Major William Dunbar, Captured In April 1775
The Junto: Book Review – A Not-So-New World: Empire and Environment in French Colonial North America
Ben Franklin’s World: Biography and a Biographer’s Work
Research Resources Available: List of City Directories
Where in the World?
Region and Branch Bits
      + Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Vancouver, June 1-6
      + Recommended Session: Integrating Loyalist and Revolutionary War History into the Classroom
      + Grand River Branch Loyalist Day Church Service, Sunday, June 16
From the Twittersphere and Beyond
Last Post: Rodney Thomas Craig
Editor’s Note


2019 UELAC Conference: It’s A Wrap … Almost

As this newsletter is being distributed, fellow Loyalists and friends are just wrapping up UELAC Conference 2019 “The Capital Calls” (May 30 – June 2, 2019), in Gatineau-Ottawa, hosted by Sir Guy Carleton Branch. Thanks to the branch for a great event!

Lots of photos were surely taken, and even when not, old acquaintances were renewed and new friendships developed.

Some took the time and savour the history along the way to conference.

Brian and Ann McConnell stopped in Saint John, NB earlier in the week and did this short video of the Loyalist Burial Ground. It is the largest United Empire Loyalist burying ground in Canada.

Further along they took a photo of Brian in another historic site – see “Where in the World” below.

On the first day before the conference gets seriously underway, Branch Membership Committees and Branch Genealogists meet in separate meetings to review changes, issues, challenges, programs etc. The Genealogist meeting had probably the largest attendance in many years, or perhaps ever. See a photo of the group (and one at higher resolution). Thanks to Carol Harding for forwarding.

Next year: Winnipeg, hosted by the Manitoba Branch

Loyalist Scholarship Challenge: 12 Days and Counting

“It is the month of June, The month of leaves and roses, When pleasant sights salute the eyes and pleasant scents the noses.” – Nathaniel Parker Willis

This week’s scholarship update is coming to you from Gatineau, Quebec on the shores of the Ottawa River where we ask the question, “What is that delightful scent”? It must be the sweet smell of success.

Scholarship is front and centre at this year’s AGM and conference as the 2019 Scholarship Challenge gains momentum. With donations coming in from across the country our total stands at $900. and we fully expect that number to increase before the end of the conference weekend. Thank you!

Good News! When you give to scholarship you are supporting the finest academic research in the field of Loyalist studies. And the benefits exceed what we see in print. Our scholarship program opens doors to opportunity. One example is ‘The Good Americans’ film project bringing recognition to UELAC as we collaborate with past UE scholars and a growing network of exceptional historians.

Your gift to the 2019 Scholarship Challenge ensures future opportunities for UELAC Scholarship. This year’s goal is $8000. Please join us by giving today.

For donations of $20 or more, a tax receipt will be issued by UELAC Head Office, or by CanadaHelps if donating online. Donations to UELAC must specify ‘Scholarship Endowment Fund.’ Should you specify a memorial gift we will make certain that recognition is given to those you wish to honour through your donation.

See how to donate and follow our progress on the 2019 Scholarship Challenge page.

Sincere thanks,

…Bonnie Schepers, UE; Scholarship Chair

The Fourteen Tisdales – A Loyalist Family Saga, Part 3: The Upper Canadian Clan

© Stephen Davidson, UE

By 1807, the fourteen Tisdales were now scattered across Upper Canada, New Hampshire, and New Brunswick, but despite the distances, they kept in touch with one another. Ephraim and Ruth Tisdale, the Loyalist couple who had found sanctuary in New Brunswick, had had a difficult spring in Waterborough. Flooding on the St. John River is always bad in the spring, and some years are far worse than others. In 1807, its waters backed up into Grand Lake, one of the river’s tributaries. This resulted in water pouring into the Tisdales’ farmhouse, reaching a level of 27 inches from the floor. The flood also washed away all of the fences on the farm. Enough was enough. Ephraim Senior was going to sell the farm (hoping to get £800) and move to Upper Canada.

With Ephraim and Ruth Tisdale came three of their sons: John (39) and his wife Sarah Brittain, Samuel (24) and his wife Charlotte Lawrence, and Matthew (21). Among the things that were brought from New Brunwick were newspapers that – for some reason – were treasured by John Tisdale. Like Ephraim’s ladle and Hannah’s dress, these newspapers would become heirlooms for the Tisdale clan that settled in Upper Canada.

Walker Tisdale (25) decided to remain in New Brunswick, where he pursued a career as a merchant, He moved down river to Saint John, where he and his wife, Eleanor Brittain remained for the rest of their lives. His sister Ruth and her husband Peter Lyon stayed in Waterborough where they raised nine children. Ruth Tisdale Lyon died in New Brunswick in 1848.

Three years before Ruth’s death, Walker travelled to Upper Canada when he was 62 years old and visited his his siblings, meeting nephews and nieces, grand-nephews and grand-nieces. When all of the relatives were accounted for, it turned out that the Loyalists Ephraim and Ruth Tisdale, had 169 descendants living in 1845.

Five years later, Walker Tisdale presented a petition to the Saint John City council urging the preservation of the old burial ground where so many Loyalists had been laid to rest. The local temperance society had asked for permission to build their meeting hall on part of the graveyard. Those who signed the petition were gratified to learn that the council rescinded the order. Walker, the Loyalist child born enroute to New Brunswick, had come to the rescue of his parents’ generation 67 years after their arrival in Saint John.

Walker Tisdale died in Saint John 12 years in 1857. He was remembered for having held civil and military offices in New Brunswick and was described in the newspaper as “one of the few remaining loyalists”. His wife Eleanor died at 73 in 1860. In 1894, portraits of Walker and Eleanor were presented to the Saint John Historical Society (perhaps by their daughter Jane (Edwin) Perkins). The couple and their two sons were also memorialized by their single daughter Sarah who had a stained glass window portraying St. Matthew placed in Saint John’s Trinity Anglican Church.

Except for Joseph, the eleven members of the original Tisdale family who settled in Upper Canada in the early 1800s never returned to New Brunswick. But the fourth son had unfinished business in the Loyalist colony. Still a bachelor at 32, Joseph went back to New Brunswick in June of 1810 to marry Margaret Lawrence. As well as his bride, Joseph Tisdale also returned to Norfolk County with what family lore has remembered as “a stock of merchandise”.

Margaret was, like her husband, the child of Loyalist refugees (and may have been a cousin of William Tisdale’s wife Sarah). Margaret’s father, Captain John Lawrence had been very active during the American Revolution, serving with the First New Jersey Volunteers at the Battle of Connecticut Farms and the Battle of Springfield. In May of 1783, he married Mary Rezeau on Staten Island during the summer that saw hundreds of Loyalist evacuation vessels leave New York City.

The couple’s first son was born in Saint John in 1784, and Margaret was born in the following year. Two years later, Margaret’s brother Peter Rezeau Lawrence was born. He was twenty-two when he accompanied his sister and new brother-in-law to Upper Canada.

Young Peter and Margaret were leaving a family that seemed to have established itself in the new Loyalist colony. John Lawrence became a judge in New Brunswick’s supreme court, served as a magistrate for Fredericton, and became a captain in the militia.

Despite all of these accomplishments, John and Mary Lawrence eventually joined their two children in Upper Canada, making York County’s

Vaughan their new home in 1816. John was 61 and Mary was 50. Like the Tisdale family, the Lawrences had a large number of children (seven sons and four daughters). All but two of their children eventually made Upper Canada their home. Toronto’s Lawrence Avenue is named for the Lawrence family.

Following the precedent set by both of their parents, Joseph and Margaret Tisdale had eleven children between 1811 and 1828 – five sons and six daughters.

The story of the fourteen Tisdales concludes in next week’s Loyalist Trails.

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

The Loyalist Mapping Project: Can you Help?

The project is a partnership between the UELAC, Huron University College’s Community History Centre, and the Map and Data Library at Western University.

In just a few weeks we will launch the initial version of a map detailing the loyalist migrations during and after the American Revolution. The initial map will visualize the journeys of a few hundred loyalists found in the United Empire Loyalists Association directory. Our hope is that over the next few years we will plot the journeys of thousands more loyalists from the directory and other sources, lists, and histories.

If anyone would like to see their own ancestor’s journey included on the initial map, please send me an email. We will do our best to include them. If your ancestor is in the loyalist directory, but you have more details, we would love to hear from you, as well. We are especially interested in loyalists who left clear steps in their journey – for example where they were born, where they were settled before the war, where they went during the war and after, and where they eventually settled. The more specific the better.

In order to plot the journeys, we need as many of the following details as possible: Name, date and place of birth. Where they settled before, during, and after the war. Date of death and burial. Occupation, regiment and rank; spouse and children, and any links or other source material you would like to share.

We will release the initial results sometime in late June.

…Tim Compeau

Quakers who were UE Loyalists

By Randy Saylor

A few Quakers who came to Canada had been involved in the American Revolution either as a soldier or by supporting the British through transport, selling supplies or harbouring Loyal fugitives. Either way they were branded as traitors by the Rebels and were a threat to the Quaker community who refused to support either side. Quakers disowned many of their people who took sides in the War.

Quaker meetings worked very hard to stay neutral and be faithful to their refusal to bear arms or support war; adhering to their Peace Testimony. They had to disown those members who helped the British. If they did not then the whole Quaker community would have suffered for supporting Tories and their neutrality would have collapsed.

Colonial New York adjusted its militia laws in 1755 to allow Quakers to not join the militia. Quakers were to pay a fine or send a replacement if asked to join.

Some Quakers were disowned for supporting the British and thus were Loyalists and never returned to being a Quaker. This paper is about those who were or petitioned to be Loyalists and remained or returned to being Quakers. The focus is on the Loyalist/Quaker aspect of the man’s life and is not meant to be a complete biography. Please let me know of any new names to add to this list.

These are the Loyalists found so far:

• Joshua Knight UE and the Beaver Harbour Quakers of New Brunswick

• Samuel Moore UE of Nova Scotia then Norwich Meeting

• Philip Dorland UE of Adolphustown Meeting

• Jeremiah Moore UE of Pelham Meeting

• Benjamin Birdsall SUE of Pelham Meeting

• Jonathan Doan of Yarmouth Meeting; request for UE status denied

Read more.

JAR: Quebec Town Major William Dunbar, Captured In April 1775

By Steve Leet, 30 May 2019

In early 1775, the town major of Quebec decided to pay a visit to Gen. Thomas Gage in Boston. William Dunbar had been an officer in the 44th Regiment of Foot during the French and Indian War, and although he had sold his regimental commission after that conflict ended, he settled in Canada and been given the post that made him responsible for law and order in the colony’s largest city. He had been sent by Canada’s governor general, Sir Guy Carleton, to Fort Ticonderoga where he arrived on April 18. After a brief stay there he made his way over land towards Boston. His timing was unfortunate.

William Dunbar, arriving at the outskirts of Boston on his trip from Fort Ticonderoga, was captured in Cambridge on April 29, 1775, ten days after hostilities had broken out. Travelling through the Massachusetts countryside, he must have been aware of the fighting that occurred on April 19, but perhaps did not realize that Boston was surrounded by hostile militia from all over New England.

Read more.

The Junto: Book Review – A Not-So-New World: Empire and Environment in French Colonial North America

By Christopher M. Parsons; review by Carla Cevasco 28 May 2019

A Not-So-New World easily moves from rich botanical detail to sweeping themes of colonialism, exchange, and power, and I have only minor quibbles. To scholars of Atlantic science, the analysis of relations between colonial and metropolitan scientists in Chapter 5 will not break as much ground as other chapters’ fascinating readings of interactions between colonial and indigenous knowledges. Religious studies scholars, meanwhile, might call for more discussion of Christian asceticism as well as Edenic plenty in Parsons’ framing of the religious mission of cultivation. But even these quibbles show the the breadth and interdisciplinarity of Parsons’ work.

With A Not-So-New World, Parsons makes important interventions into Native American and borderlands history, intellectual history, history of medicine and science, and environmental history. As this and other works urgently argue, in the Anthropocene, the world needs to listen to Native peoples’ deep wells of environmental knowledge.

Read more.

Ben Franklin’s World: Biography and a Biographer’s Work

Flora Fraser joins us to talk about biography, and in doing so, she’ll tell us what it was like to grow up as the daughter and granddaughter of two famed, British biographers and about the genre of biography and how it developed in the United Kingdom.

Listen to the podcast.

Research Resources Available: List of City Directories

See City Directories (all from the 1900’s, most in ON but a few from BC, NB and PEI) which have become available from a genealogist in Ottawa. The City of Ottawa Archive has taken one, but the rest are available “free to a good home”.

If a Branch or individual is interested please contact Reference Archivist Signe Jeppesen. She will notify the owner of the Directories and make the necessary connection.

…Dorothy Meyerhoff, Sir Guy Carleton Branch

Where in the World?

Where is Nova Scotia Branch member Brian McConnell?

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 your submission to the editor at loyalist.trails@uelac.org.

Region and Branch Bits

From the UELAC branches, news and events of interest to others.

Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Vancouver, June 1-6

At the University of British Columbia, Borealia has compiled a preview of the panels and presentations that may be of particular interest to those looking for “early Canada” at Congress 2019. See full details. ..

Recommended Session: Integrating Loyalist and Revolutionary War History into the Classroom

The Canadian Historical Association is having its annual meeting at UBC next week. One session of interest to UELAC members is on Wednesday, 5 June, at 1:30 PM, in The Buchanan Building, D Wing, Room 322. It is titled “Integrating Loyalist and Revolutionary War history into the Classroom.” It will be one hour long and promises to be a discussion of all the sources, written and visual, for this subject. The Gage Towers parkade, because of construction, is awkward to get into and is only accessible from Chancellor Boulevard, although it is closest carpark. The Rose Garden parkade off Chancellor is larger and easier to reach. D Wing is opposite the Chan Centre/Theatre.

…Peter Moogk & Christine Manzer

Grand River Branch Loyalist Day Church Service, Sunday, June 16

The worship service and flag raising will be held Sunday, June 16th 2019 at St Paul’s Presbyterian Church, Lot Street, Simcoe, Ontario at 10:30 a.m. The Loyalist Flag Raising will follow in Governor Simcoe Square at 12:00 noon. All are invited to attend this celebration of the United Empire Loyalists, Canada’s first refugees and pioneers of Norfolk County. Following the Flag Raising, members are invited to a luncheon and afternoon of socializing at the Royal Canadian Legion in Simcoe. Luncheon tickets are available by contacting Bill Terry at charles@kwic.com or 519-428-4177, before June 9th for $24.50.

From the Twittersphere and Beyond

  • Andrew Scheer, Justin Trudeau and the immigration consensus nobody wants to admit to. At a time when conservative parties across the world are increasingly pandering to nativist impulses, it was positive and necessary and a little bit wonderful to hear the leader of Canada’s Conservative Party embrace Canada’s fact as a nation of immigrants. Read more…
  • The small village of Queenston, with a population that never exceeded 400, had three churches during the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, only one remains as a religious institution. The congregation of St. Saviour, The Brock Memorial Church, was originally formed by a group of United Empire Loyalists sometime before 1788. They came from a variety of denominations, so the church didn’t become officially Anglican until 1820. Although a historical plaque at the church says the present church was begun in 1877 and completed two years later, Harold Usher, a former treasurer and historian of the church, claimed that the present church was in fact started in 1873. The church is dedicated to the memory of Maj.-Gen. Sir Isaac Brock. It is believed to be the only Anglican church known to honour a layman. Read more…
  • Today in History: Lars D.H. Hedbor @LarsDHHedbor (see his page for associated photos):
    • 1 Jun 1779 Benedict Arnold’s court-martial begins, embittering him & turning him toward treason against Colonies.
    • 31 May 1776 Mecklenburg County, NC issues “Mecklenburg Resolves,” suspending British authority in North-Carolina.
    • 30 May 1778 British forces from Philadelphia fail in plan to entrap Marquis de Lafayette at Battle of Barren Hill.
    • 29 May 1780 British Col. Tarleton has surrendering rebels shot at Waxhaws, SC, cementing a reputation for brutality.
    • 28 May 1754 Col. George Washington accidentally starts French & Indian War, as captive dies during interrogation.
    • 27 May 1776 Representatives of the Haudenosaunee Confederation appear before Congress, discuss concerns.
    • 26 May 1776 President of Virginia Convention warns Maryland of approaching British fleet.
  • Whaley’s Corners Public School. New Brampton school has a 200 year old name, writes Nick Moreau. One of Brampton’s newest schools has a historic name, dating back to the 1810s. Whaley’s Corners Public School is named for one of the earliest crossroad communities. Many Americans had an appetite to move north to the British territories, following the Revolutionary War. An American company purchased a chunk of land to set up a community solely of these United Empire Loyalists. Read more…
  • Townsends

Last Post: Rodney Thomas Craig

May 7, 1935 – May 26, 2019

Rodney passed away peacefully in his 85th year at home, surrounded by family. Rodney was the beloved husband of Beverly (Burwell) Craig for 49 years. They had a partnership filled with love, friendship, compassion and many shared interests. He was the loving father of Jason (Kim Blackwell), Trevor (Ashley Goodfellow Craig) and Heather Munderich (Sam).

He is survived by his five grandchildren Maude Rose, Hannah, Nathan, Liam and Eli; they all brought him much joy and filled him with pride. The legacy of Rodney’s kind spirit and zest for life will live on through them.

Rodney will be lovingly remembered by his sisters Inez Lewis (Bill deceased) and Karen Tolonen. He was predeceased by his sister Ailsa Green (Ken deceased). He was a beloved friend of his sisters-in-law Jackie (Scholes) Burwell (Mike); and Helen (Burwell) Reaume (Gary).

Rodney will be missed by his many nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews.

He was born in Crowland, Ontario and spent most of his life as a resident of Welland and Ridgeville, Ontario. He is predeceased by his parents Harry Craig and Dorothy Lord.

Rodney was a tireless and selfless volunteer for the United Empire Loyalists’ Association, Colonel John Butler Niagara Branch and the Ontario Genealogical Society, where he served on many committees and as President at various times.

Rodney was a person of faith and lived life serving others. He was a devoted member of St. Kevin’s Parish, Welland.

Rodney worked at the Atlas Steel in Welland for 45 years. He will be missed by his many friends and former co-workers.

Visitations will be on Wednesday, May 29, 2019 from 2 pm to 4 pm at H. L. Cudney Funeral Home, 241 West Main St., Welland, Ontario. Prayers are at 2 pm.

Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, May 30, 2019 at 11 am at The Parish Community of St. Kevin Catholic Church, 303 Niagara St., Welland, Ontario.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Kevin’s Memorial Fund or St. Kevin’s Advent Fund. Online condolences available at www.cudneyfuneralhome.com.

“It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of Rodney Craig, our CJB branch genealogist. Rodney passed away last Saturday, May 25th, just a few short weeks following resigning his post for health reasons. He had been a most valued member of the UELAC and our branch for many decades and may have aided more members in verifying their ancestry than any other genealogist in the organization. Rod will be greatly missed by all who knew him – he was an association genealogy legend in his own time. Rod, along with his wife Beverly Craig UE, loved helping members attain their goals of receiving UELAC certificates. His selfless service and dedication will never be forgotten. I am honoured to have known and served with him on our executive board.”

— Dale Flagler, UE; President, Col. John Butler Branch

“Rod’s expertise as a genealogist was remarkable and principally responsible for the Col. John Butler Branch (Niagara) becoming the largest branch within the Association for several years. Rod was a key figure in the UELAC and an enthusiastic supporter of Loyalist heritage and history. Friendly and engaging, Rod always greeted me with warmth and genuine interest. He’ll be missed but his work, such as the Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University, will stand as a testament to his conviction and commitment to Loyalist research. Bev and the family are in my thoughts.”

— David Hill Morrison, UELAC Regional Councillor

Rod was a recipient of the The Most Honourable Order of Meritorious Heritage, offered by the Heritage Branch from 1974 until 2002. The brief biographical note reads: Branch Genealogist since 1997, initiated Genealogy Workshop at a local library, organizing committee for Butler Bicentennial Celebrations 1996, 1993 UELAC Conference in Hamilton, Chair of UELAC Conference 2000 hosted by Colonel John Butler Branch, Friends of the Loyalist Collection at Brock University, 2014 Promotions Committee.

…Fred Hayward

Editor’s Note

I would like to have more items in the newsletter than are in this one, especially in the Twittersphere section, but I have been enjoying myself at the Conference in Gatineau instead. It has been another good conference. Thanks to the team of people who put it together; it was a lot of work over four years.