“Loyalist Trails” 2019-23: June 9, 2019
In this issue:
– Loyalist Scholarship Challenge: 40 Days of Giving – Day 20
– The Fourteen Tisdales – A Loyalist Family Saga, Part 4: Remembered in New Brunswick, by Stephen Davidson
– Conference 2019: A Wrap, by Ruth Nicholson
– Returning home: UELAC Conference in Ottawa-Gatineau to Nova Scotia
– Resource: Loyalists Removed from Boston For Halifax in March 1776
– Atlantic Loyalist Connections: Long Island’s Revolutionary War Battlefields
– JAR: Decoding British ciphers used in the South, 1780-81
– JAR: Josiah Quincy, Jr.
– Washington’s Quill: A Loyalist Describes George Washington
– Ben Franklin’s World: Pearls & the Nature of the Spanish Empire
– Where in the World?
– Region and Branch Bits
+ St. Lawrence Branch Cemetery Plaquing
+ Loyalist Day in Ontario, Saskatchewan and Edmonton on June 19
+ King’s Royal Regiment of Canada Reenactment Weekend June 15/16
+ Moore Family Reunion at Norwich ON, Saturday, June 29
+ “Forgotten Soldier” opening June 29 at American Revolution Museum at Yorktown
+ St. Lawrence Branch Summer Picnic, Sunday, July 14
– From the Twittersphere and Beyond
+ Under what officers did Casparus Springsteen, Butler’s Ranger, serve?
May 21 – July 1, 2019. Halfway there!
“Everything you do now is for your future. Think about that.”
When you’re up, you’re up!
This week we begin with a special shout out to UELAC branches. Eight branches have already given or pledged donations of $200.00 and more to scholarship: Assiniboine Branch, Bicentennial Branch, Colonel John Butler (Niagara) Branch, Governor Simcoe Branch, Grand River Branch, Heritage Branch, Kawartha Branch, and Vancouver Branch. We thank you!
The amount raised to date is $3,620.00. Included in that total are several individual donations. We have 20 days to reach our goal of $8000.00. Are you with me? Your donation today supports the future of Loyalist research and the United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada.
Why we Give
As a reminder of the value of the Loyalist scholarship program here are a few words from current UE Scholar, Jonathan Bayer, “As a PhD student having just completed my second year at the University of Western Ontario, this scholarship will provide me with research opportunities that would otherwise have been out of reach. I intend to complete my degree by 2021 and from there find a job teaching Canadian history with an emphasis on early Canadian/American relations. The UELAC Scholarship will go far in helping me to achieve this goal and I am very grateful for this generous funding.” View the full letter.
Please Join Us
For donations of $20 or more, a tax receipt will be issued by UELAC Head Office, or by CanadaHelps if donating online. For this challenge donations to UELAC must specify ‘Scholarship Endowment Fund’. All donations are welcome.
Additional scholarship giving options include planned gifts, annual giving, or a bequest. Should you wish to make a memorial gift we will ensure that recognition is given to those you wish to honour through your donation.
…Bonnie Schepers, UE; Scholarship Chair
© Stephen Davidson, UE
The Tisdale brothers who had made their homesteads along the shore of Lake Erie in Upper Canada’s Norfolk County each had large families to support. However, the family’s knack for business gave them the means to provide for their dependents.
The families of Joseph, Lot, Samuel and Matthew Tisdale were supported through the earnings of the partnership that they created (with Benjamin Mead) upon Joseph’s return to Charlotteville Township following his wedding in New Brunswick in the summer of 1810.
What began as a general mercantile business grew to include a tannery and mill. Over time, Joseph Tisdale became one of the largest landowners in the region. In 1812, he built Cedar Hall, a 2-story frame house with a massive chimney and numerous fireplaces. In addition to his own family, Cedar Hill was also home to Joseph’s oldest sister, Hannah Perley, and her three children.
Joseph also served his community as the captain of the first Norfolk militia – an important post given that Americans raided this area just two years after the Tisdales had married. Among the treasures that the couple brought from New Brunswick in 1810 was “the first genuine china tea set” used to entertain in Norfolk County.
When Americans raided the country during the War of 1812, Margaret Tisdale hid her china in the nearby cedar bog to prevent it being destroyed or plundered by Brigadier General Duncan McArthur’s men. While the Tisdale china tea set survived the war, the family’s mill did not, being burned by the American raiders.
Lot Tisdale also suffered damage to his farm, which, by the time of the war, was in Ancaster. The sixth Tisdale married Ann Nancy Swain and together the couple would eventually have seven daughters and six sons – although one genealogist says that they had 21 children in total. The couple later sold their farm to Lot’s brother Samuel and made Burford their home.
John Tisdale and his wife Sarah (Brittain) raised their eleven children in Windham. For the last eight years of his life, John suffered “trembling palsy” which he was remembered as bearing with “admirable fortitude and Christian resignation”. His death on October 24, 1841 was noted in Saint John’s New Brunswick Courier as well as Upper Canadian newspapers.
Just a week after his funeral four of his daughters and his youngest son were in a wagon accident on their trip home from their Sunday morning worship service. After being thrown from the carriage, 30 year-old Margaret Tisdale was run over by its wheels. She died within four hours. Nine years later, the death of John’s wife Sarah was also reported in a New Brunswick newspaper that remembered her as being a native of the Loyalist colony.
Hannah Tisdale Perley died at age 73 on August 31, 1844 in the Vittoria home of her brother Joseph. Her daughter Elizabeth died a single woman. Her son Ephraim Perley became a farmer, marrying his cousin Philena in 1817. He died 54 years later in Courtland, Upper Canada without any children.
Hannah’s youngest son, Col. Charles Strange Perley, is remembered as having served as a magistrate in Burford. During the Rebellion of 1837, he was “one of the most zealous supporters of the government to be found in the district”. Charles had also fought in the War of 1812 when he was just 16 years old. He and his wife had five sons and five daughters.
William Tisdale, his wife Sarah and their ten children settled down in Trafalgar (near Hamilton), Upper Canada. Family lore says that his mother-in-law exchanged the land on which the present city of Hamilton is built for a barrel of pork. When William died at 65 on October 3, 1846, the New Brunswick Courier of Saint John remembered him as someone who had lived in the colony 40 years earlier and – since moving to Upper Canada – was “among the first settlers of Trafalgar”.
In 1853, two of the Tisdale brothers died. Samuel met his end at age 69 on May 8th in Ancaster, while his older brother Ephraim Jr. passed away at 86 on October 8th in Vittoria. The latter did not go into business with his younger brothers but made his living as a farmer. During the War of 1812, 46 year-old Ephraim Jr. had helped to fend off 150 American troops intent on plundering and burning homes along the shores of Lake Erie. His militia killed one officer and fourteen men.
During the Rebellion of 1837, 69 year-old Ephraim Jr. served as a sergent in the cavalry. He was noted as being a “high constable” for the district of London for one year and a justice of the peace for 25 years. He and his wife, Submit Newcombe, had five sons and five daughters.
Samuel and Charlotte (Lawrence) Tisdale had four children that survived into adulthood. His death was also noted in a New Brunswick newspaper which said that he was a member of the Church of England and had served throughout the War of 1812.
Matthew Tisdale, the youngest of the 12 Tisdale children was also the last of his siblings to die. He served as a major in the War of 1812 and at some point in time married Abigail Axford. (Family lore says that Abigail was the daughter of a Loyalist plantation owner from the southern colonies. Another source says her parents were from New Jersey.) After farming in the Townsend Township, the Tisdales moved near Secord’s Corners. In good Tisdale fashion, the couple had eight daughters and two sons. After retiring in St. Thomas for health reasons, Matthew joined the local Masonic Lodge. He died at age 87 in 1875, having been predeceased by Abigail in 1854.
As for Matthew’s twin sister, Joanna, the records only note that she had two sons and four daughters by her husband Harden Ellsworth. She died at 39 on January 7, 1826 in Long Point, Norfolk County.
And so the descendants of Captain Ephraim and Ruth Tisdale became established in Upper Canada. When the last of their children died, the colony had changed its name twice, becoming Canada West and then Ontario – one of the founding provinces of the Dominion of Canada. Ephraim, the patriarch of the Tisdale clan, died at age 70 on May 4, 1815 in Norfolk County. Six years later, his wife Ruth passed away at age 73 and was buried near Simcoe.
The couple were laid to rest in graves that were 900 km from where they had been born in Freetown, Massachusetts. In the years between cradle and coffin, the couple had suffered the violence of a revolution, the adversities of refugee migration, the work of establishing homesteads in two Loyalist colonies, and then endured American attacks during the War of 1812. Ephraim and Ruth had raised twelve children who established their own families in New Brunswick, Maine, and Upper Canada. Almost too incredible to be true, the story of the fourteen Tisdales is an epic saga in the chronicles of Loyalist history.
To secure permission to reprint this article, email Stephen Davidson.
Loyalists and friends joined together at the 2019 UELAC Conference, “The Capital Calls,” May 30 – June 2, at DoubleTree by Hilton Gatineau-Ottawa, hosted by Sir Guy Carleton Branch. See details and (just added online) thank-yous.
Congratulations to the Sylvia Powers and her Conference Committee who made “The Capital Calls” a very successful and welcoming time for all who attended. Every moment was charged with new learning, intriguing topics, polished speakers and great hospitality.
The DoubleTree Inn by Hilton was a perfect venu. The rooms were spacious and the meeting areas were easy to find, all being at the one location. There was lots of space for all our needs.
A comprehensive booklet was created with welcoming messages from many important dignataries. The conference schedule was clearly stated and there was a wonderful listing of attendees in alphabetical order, a separate listing by branch and a third listing of all the Loyalist ancestors with attending descendants. This is not only interesting but also helps us find the name of someone by branch or by surname.
Friday’s excursions were varied; something of interest for all. I attended the Rideau Valley tour, ably hosted by Brian Tackaberry. Merrickville was such a quaint town with its own blockhouse. Through the Goulbourn Museum we enjoyed interactive, engaging displays. We learned about military equipment from a young reenactment group and were shown the manner that their archives preserved both paper and object artifacts within a very small facility. The Watson Mill and home were well worth our visit too.
Other groups were shown interesting downtown Ottawa monuments and buildings. A third group went to the National Archives to research. Whatever your desire, it was met with these choices.
All the speakers and workshop leaders were excellent. The food was plentiful and delicious.
There is so much more to say: the AGM went smoothly, the reception was opened with a talk from Albert Dumont, an Anishinabe author, spiritual leader and traditional teacher. He talked informally to us about caring for one another and always being thankful. Great words of wisdom to live by each day.
The final event was the Sunday service at Christ Church Aylmer. It is the oldest church in the area, built in 1843. The Anglican service was taken from 18th century Order of Service book. The hymns were tradtional ones that we all knew. The line for those taking communion reached from the front to the back of the church and kept moving forward until all were served. Rev. Cannon Mary Ellen Barry led the service with grace, depth and with a measure of humour.
Thank-you Sir Guy Carlton Branch for hosting a very thorough and interesting conference in the Ottawa/Gatineau area.
…Ruth Nicholson, Chair, UELAC Conference Committee
Thrilled to locate monument & plaque to my United Empire Loyalist ancestor James Humphrey at Johnstown, Ontario: Brian McConnell UE
Beside Memorial in Old Burying Ground at Fredericton, NB erected in 1983 by Fredericton Branch of United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada. Note the history and description in Loyalist Monuments across the country. which was developed by Fred Hayward. Updates and additions are welcome.
The Old Burying Ground dates from the settlement of the area by United Empire Loyalists in 1784. In addition to the impressive monument, there are also memorials to British soldiers who served at the Garrison between 1784 and 1869. All known graves are identified by location on a map at the front of the Old Burying Ground. Here is a short video that I prepared.
I came across this interesting online file while digging around the USGenWeb free site. It’s a “List of the inhabitants of Boston, who on the evacuation by the British, in March, 1776, removed to Halifax Canada with the British army” – lots of familiar Nova Scotia surnames.
David Griffin on 5 June 2019
On April 15, 2019, archaeologists from The LAMAR Institute began a month-long search for three significant American Revolutionary War battlefields on Long Island, New York. The project, entitled, “The Struggle for Long Island: Expanding Revolutionary War Studies in New York” examines military sites occupied by Loyalists including the stronghold of Fort Slongo; Setauket, which was a fortified church; and the fort and Loyalist headquarters known as Fort Franklin/Lloyd’s Neck. Patriot attacks on the three forts resulted in a Patriot victory at Fort Slongo. Patriots retreated at the other two, including Fort Franklin where Patriots were joined by French allies. This project seeks to locate and delineate the three battlefields and to interpret the findings, advancing our understanding of Long Island’s important role in the American Revolution. Work was funded by a $60,000 American Battlefield Protection Program grant from the National Park Service and $5200 in contributions from the LAMAR Institute.
by Ian Saberton 6 June 2019
Earlier this year I was asked by an American historian if I could decode the cipher in the following letter from Col. Francis Lord Rawdon, commanding in the upcountry of South Carolina and Georgia, to Lt. Col. John Watson Tadwell Watson, being a cipher which had not been broken for 238 years: [a series of numbers: 33, 16, 41-17, 5, 64, 22 57, 19, 18, 3-65, etc.]
On close analysis it soon became apparent to me that the cipher was the Common cipher, which was more widely used in the south, for example in correspondence between Lt. General Charles Earl Cornwallis, the British General Officer Commanding there, and the following officers: Rawdon; Lt. Col. George Turnbull when commanding at Camden, South Carolina; Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton, when in the field; and Major James Henry Craig commanding at Wilmington, North Carolina. They in turn made use of it when corresponding at times with their subordinates. When Watson returned to New York in early summer 1781, he took the cipher with him and it was used by General Sir Henry Clinton, the British Commander-in-Chief in North America, in his dispatch of July 11, 1781 to Cornwallis, who had by then entered Virginia.
The enciphered words [the numbers above] read: “[If your intelligence corresponds with this,] you will please to send Fanning’s Regt hither as quickly as possible and Small’s may return to Monk’s Corner.”
As far as the enciphering device was concerned, it had two concentric rings, the outer of which consisted of the letters of the alphabet in their normal order, and the inner a series of numbers in a permanently fixed order.
by Bob Ruppert 4 June 2019
Josiah Quincy, Jr.’s name is rarely mentioned in history books. This is because his name never appeared at the top of any leaderboard, that is, he was not a member of the Continental Congress, a military hero, a leader of a movement or group, or an author of an influential work, and because he died at the age of thirty-one. In 1763, after graduating from Harvard, he started his study of the law under Oxenbridge Thacher, a distinguished Boston lawyer. When he began his public career, he was known for his oratory skills, keen legal mind, and belief in the colonies’ right to self-government.
On August 27, 1765, in response to the Stamp Act, the citizens of Boston ransacked the home of Gov. Thomas Hutchinson. In a memorandum the next day Quincy called the citizens, “the warmest Lovers of Liberty” and denounced the Stamp Act as “unconstitutional.”
By Kathryn Gehred, Research Editor 7 June 2019
When you work at The Washington Papers, you read plenty of fawning 18th-century letters and news articles about George Washington – which is why Rev. Jonathan Boucher’s dismissive description, written in his memoirs in 1786, struck me as something interesting:
I did know Mr. Washington well; and tho’ occasions may call forth traits of character that never would have been discovered in the more sequestered scenes of life, I cannot conceive how he could, otherwise than through the interested representations of party, have ever been spoken of as a great man. He is shy, silent, stern, slow and cautious, but has no quickness of parts, extraordinary penetration, nor an elevated style of thinking. In his moral character he is regular, temperate, strictly just and honest (excepting that as a Virginian, he has lately found out that there is no moral turpitude in not paying what he confesses he owes to a British creditor) and, as I always thought, religious: having heretofore been pretty constant, and even exemplary, in his attendance on public worship in the Church of England. But he seems to have nothing generous or affectionate in his nature.
This description made some waves in the late 1800s when Boucher’s memoirs were finally published, an era in which many U.S. history classes upheld Washington as the definition of greatness. So, who was this man who found Washington so unimpressive?
Molly Warsh, an Associate Professor of History at the University of Pittsburgh, helps us investigate how Spain attempted to increase its wealth and govern its Atlantic empire through its American and Caribbean pearl operations.
Using details from her book, American Baroque: Pearls and the Nature of Empire, 1492-1700, Molly reveals details about the instructions King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella gave to Christopher Columbus for his voyage; Information about pearls and Spain’s pearl harvesting operations in the Americas; And the different ways Spain sought to use pearls to impose order on its vast Atlantic empire and why those different regulatory measures ultimately failed.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the UELAC branches, news and events of interest to others.
We have two special events upcoming, related to our “Loyalist Burial Site” plaque project. We’ll be unveiling a plaque at two locations. We’d absolutely love to see you there:
• Trinity Anglican Church 105 Second St. West, Cornwall on Tuesday, June 11(7:00 pm – 8:00 pm)
• St. Andrew’s United Church21102 Second Con. Road, Bainsville on Wednesday, June 12(10:00 am – 11:00 am)
• Kawartha Branch Flag Raising Ceremony, at Peterborough City Hall, on Wednesday, 19 June 2019, beginning at 10:00 am
• Hamilton Branch’s Service of Honour and Remembrance takes place at the Art Gallery of Hamilton, 123 King Street West, Hamilton on June 19th LOYALIST’ DAY at 11:00 am. Speaker is Sue Hines, our Dominion President. Come in period dress (if available) and join our parade. Parking is available underground. The Art Gallery of Hamilton is across the street from Hamilton City Hall.
• Toronto and Gov. Simcoe Branches at Queen’s Park, Toronto, by the guest flag pole on the front lawn at 1:30 (time to be confirmed; might be at 2:00)
Visit with The King’s Royal Regiment of Canada and the Loyalist weekend (Soldiers & Spies) at Black Creek Pioneer Village in Toronto. Re-enactors from a number of regiments will be portraying 18th century military life for both men and women (yes, women were active participants in day to day military life) with lots of activities and demos during the day culminating with a battle. Many of the re-enactors have Loyalist ancestors and would be happy to share whatever information they have about them. Saturday June 15 and Sunday June 16.
Alex Lawrence, UE
From 11:00 until 3:00 at the Norwich and District Museum, 89 Stover Street North, Norwich Ontario will be held a Reunion of descendants of Samuel Moore of Massachusetts and New Jersey, born 1630, and his great-grandson, Samuel Moore of New Jersey, born 1742, from across Canada and the USA.
• Start time: 11:00 a.m. – Meet and Greet
• Lunch: 12 noon – Bring a lunch (fridge, dished and cutlery provided)
• After Lunch: – sharing stories of our ancestors
Discover personal stories of enslaved and free African Americans on both sides of the American Revolution and their contributions toward establishing an independent nation in Forgotten Soldier – a new special exhibition opening June 29 at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.
Our annual potluck picnic, this year to be held at the base of the Crysler Farm mound near Upper Canada Village. Bask in the sun or relax in the shade. Bring food for yourself or to share,as well as a chair (there are no benches or picnic tables).
- Have you attended a reenactment lately? Good experience. Example is this weekend’s – June 8 & 9 – “Battle of Newbury” Revolutionary War reenactment at Historic NE’s Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm. Check the schedule for a big list of activities, like many reenactments have.
- Today in History: Lars D.H. Hedbor @LarsDHHedbor (see his page for associated photos):
- 7 Jun 1776 Richard Henry Lee introduces Independence Resolution in Continental Congress; tabled until 1 July.
- 6 Jun 1776 Gen. Clinton proclaims the people of Charleston, SC must “return to their Duty to our common Sovereign.”
- 5 Jun 1775 Williamsburg magazine is looted of 400 guns by rebellious mob.
- 4 Jun 1775 Ethan Allen is surprised at armed response to reconnaissance party by Canadians; was hoping for support.
- 3 Jun 1781: Jack Jouett rode from Louisa County to Charlottesville to warn Gov. Thomas Jefferson of the approaching British Army. Jefferson retreated to his second home at Poplar Forest, leaving VA without an elected governor.
- 3 Jun 1775 3 men from Williamsburg, VA are surprised & injured by gunfire while taking arms from public magazine.
- 2 Jun 1774 Parliament punishes Colonies for Tea Party by completing “Coercive Acts,” spurring widening revolt.
- quote of the day 8 June 1775. Lt. Col. Experience Storrs from his new regimental headquarters in Thomas Fayerweather’s house in Cambridge: “Mr. Fairweather came home last night out of humor as they tell me. No wonder, his house filled up with soldiers.”
- Rev. Samuel Cooke,OTD May 30, 1770, in a sermon at the opening of the Massachusetts legislature: “I trust, on this occasion, I may, without offence – plead the cause of our African slaves and humbly propose the pursuit of some effectual measures, at least, to prevent the future importation of them. May it be the glory of this province to lead in the cause of the oppressed.”
- Townsends (Part 1 was in last weeks issue)
- A post in Spitalfields Life about Anna Maria Garthwaite, the 18th century silk designer. Almost all Spitalfields flowered silk was meant for clothing rather than interior decoration or upholstery, used to make elegant dresses and petticoats for women and elaborate waistcoats for men. Fashion depended then – as it still does – on enticing consumers with novelty and variety. The designs owed their existence to global natural history networks and the demands of the North American colonial market, the English silk industry’s most important market outside of London.
- 18th Century young girl’s dress, a back-fastening gown of ivory silk hand embroidered with floral motifs, birds and butterflies in coloured silks, woven and embroidered in China, sewn in England, c.1760
- There is a suggestion that the white cotton used in the making of this robe a la francaise is actually a furnishing fabric that was then hand embroidered with crewel work Cyprus trees. A choice of economics or experiment I wonder…? 1770s
- Detail, pink silk slipper, c1790; toe embroidered with metallic thread & spangles.
- Rear detail of 18th Century dress, block printed and painted cotton, c.1785
- 18th Century men’s court suit and waistcoat, silk, c.1775, probably British
- Breeches were worn by men throughout the 18th century and 19th century and still worn for ceremonial, clerical, legal and riding. Breeches have been made from many fabrics, even knit fabrics, and were fastened with buckles or ties at the knee.
- These 4 pipes found in the Thames mud date between 1700 and 1770.They have the initials of the makers on the heel & there’s even a bonus pinch of 18thC ash & tobacco. I’m sure that smokers of the past would be amused at how fascinating we find their old pipes
Casparus Springsteen (often recorded as Gaspar), joined Butler’s Rangers early in the American Revolution around 1778. Like all the Rangers, he was called back to Fort Niagara and then granted land in Ontario where he lived the rest of his life and raised 10 children on his land grant.
What I have never been able to find is any information connecting my GGfather to any of the battles of Butler’s Rangers – which ones he may have travelled and fought. I know nothing of his time with Butler’s Rangers but I do know he served under Allan MacDonald (I think he was a lower level officer later in the war) but I don’t have knowledge of the higher level of officers. Allan ended up living as a neighbour of Caspar in Gainsborough Twp.
I have read a book on the Butler’s Rangers, “Butler’s Rangers, the Revolutionary Period” by E. Cruikshank, but while it gives great detail of the activities, it does not my GGfather to any events, battles etc. I am aware that John Butler’s home was burned down during the 1812 War and that the records he had maintained were lost but I am wondering if there is any other source that will give me some detail or stories that might bring his years with the Rangers to life?
By the way, Caspar’s younger brother also served with Butler’s Rangers. His name was Staats Springsteen.
What I am asking is this: Are there any sources you might know or any person or organization that has in-depth knowledge of the Rangers and which units fought where? I probably would come close if I knew the more senior level officers Caspar served under. I appreciate any information you can provide.