“Loyalist Trails” 2019-36: September 8, 2019
In this issue:
– Go Back to Loyalist Times in the Mohawk Valley, Sept. 29 – Oct. 4
– Nova Scotia to Sierra Leone: 18 Black Loyalists’ Stories (Part 2), by Stephen Davidson
– Who Were The Black Loyalists?
– George Ludlow UEL: Addendum and Clarification
– Loyalists, Abaco Islands, Bahamas and Hurricane Dorian
– Atlantic Loyalist Connections: Medical Pioneers, Part 2: Freaky Pharmaceuticals and Quack Cures
– JAR: James Moore’s Commission in the East Florida Rangers
– JAR: A Plan for a British “Female Corps”
– Washington’s Quill: Refusing the Commander in Chief
– Ben Franklin’s World: The Money Question in Early America
– Regency on a Shoestring: Making Caps
– Who in the World?
– Region and Branch Bits
+ Bicentennial Branch – Kingsville, ON (Sept. 14)
+ Mohawk Valley Presentation – Johnstown, NY (Oct. 3)
+ Fall Fleet Celebration – Chilliwack, BC (Oct. 5)
+ Nova Scotia Meeting – Windsor, NS (Oct. 5)
– From the Twittersphere and Beyond
– Additions to the Loyalist Directory
– Remembering Okill Stuart
– Last Post: Alma Irene Hayward, UE
Want to ‘experience’ history? Enjoy a whole week – or a day or two – of unique, custom-designed experiences that will allow you to immerse yourself in the rich history of the Mohawk Valley and surrounding area. The American Revolution swept people of the region up in the chaos of war, forcing people who had lived, worked, and fought together, to choose sides. Visit, explore, taste, learn at:
• Johnson Hall
• Fort Plain Museum and Historical Park
• Ayres House
• Fort Frey
• Colonial Cemetery
• Colonial Johnstown
• Battle of Johnstown Walking Tour
• St. Patrick’s Masonic Lodge
• Fort Klock
• Nellis Tavern
• Stone Arabia
Hands-On History Starts Here! Book the full week, selected days or a single day.
Spaces are limited – book today!
© Stephen Davidson, UE
The political unrest in the early years of Sierra Leone’s history often escalated into physical violence, resulting in the deaths of Black Loyalists. In other situations, it simply meant a loss of position held by a frustrated Nova Scotian immigrant.
Myles Dixon had just been a boy of 15 when he boarded the Blacket in New York City with his parents, Charles and Dolly Dixon in April of 1783. Once enslaved by Willis Wilkinson of Nansemond, Virginia, the Dixons had escaped to freedom with three sons and two daughters in 1779. Ranging in age from 15 to 4 years of age, Myles, Luke, Dick, Sophia and Sally would have spent the formative years of their childhood in Shelburne or Birchtown. It may be that the Dixon children attended the Birchtown school where Stephen Blucke, a former Black Brigade officer, served as teacher. If so, Blucke may have been the one to inspire Myles Dixon to become a teacher in Sierra Leone.
Myles – who was just 23 when his family emigrated to Sierra Leone – would be the one to leave his imprint on the African colony’s history. Eventually siding with those who felt oppressed by the Sierra Leone Company, Myles was dismissed from his position as a company-employed teacher in 1794. But his pupils could continue to hear his anti-establishment politics each Sunday given that Dixon was also a preacher at one of Freetown’s independent chapels.
Another future resident of Freetown, Sierra Leone was Stephen Peters, who as a healthy 20 year-old who had sailed for Port Roseway on the Esther in 1783. He had served the British crown for four years during the American Revolution after escaping slavery in Charleston, South Carolina which, in time, gave him the right to a General Birch Certificate. He would become a member of the Methodist congregation in Birchtown before joining the exodus to Africa in the fall of 1791.
After settling in Freetown, Peters became an elder in the colony’s largest Methodist church. This position also came with the authority to advise congregants in political matters. Angry over the lack of equality Black Loyalists experienced in Sierra Leone, Peters advised his people not to vote for any white Sierra Leone Company employees in the colonial elections of 1796. Peters himself was elected as one of the six new representatives on the governing council. In the next year’s elections he was re-elected because of his opposition to the control that whites had in Sierra Leone.
In June of 1783, Eli Atken (or Ackim) had sailed to Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia on the Lydia with members of the New Jersey Volunteers, a regiment of Loyalist soldiers. Enslaved by Joseph Allen of Newark, New Jersey, Atken had escaped his master when he was just seven years old. How this 14 year-old fared in Nova Scotia after his arrival is a story lost to history. He would be 22 when he once again boarded a ship for a land that held out the promise of freedom and equality.
By his third year in Sierra Leone, Atken had become an assistant apothecary, earning £50 a year. Over time, he bought up property in Freetown, became a merchant, and built himself a “substantial home”. His fortunes reversed for a while when he was forced to sell his property to pay off business debts. Some of his land was given to recently liberated African slaves by the Sierra Leone Company.
At age 61, Atken served as a spokesman for the Black Loyalists’ opposition to militia service when the Sierra Leone Comany tried to make it mandatory in the colony. The prominent businessman who as a teenager had once called Annapolis Royal his home, left his descendants an inheritance of forty acres of land in Freetown.
In July 1783, the transport ship L’Abondance brought over four hundred Black Loyalists to what is now Shelburne, Nova Scotia. Among its passengers were at least eight men and women who would elect to settle in Sierra Leone eight years later.
Hector Peters was just 20 years old when he boarded L’Abondance. Noted in the Book of Negroes as being born free, Peters left Charleston, South Carolina in 1779 to side with the British. After becoming a labourer in Shelburne, Peters was made an elder in the town’s Baptist church. Later, he was put in charge of the Baptist congregaton in Preston, Nova Scotia before joining the exodus to Sierra Leone.
Peters’ life in Sierra Leone was a rather erratic one. Despite being recognized as one of the more religious Black Loyalists, it was also widely known that he was among four such men who had extra-marital relationships. Despite his moral failings, Peters was one of three elders put in charge of the Freetown Baptist Church when David George travelled to England in the fall of 1792.
When George returned to Freetown in the following summer, Peters abandoned his wife and children, went into the interior of the colony, and entered the slave trade. Six years later, Peters returned to Freetown and, by 1810, had succeeded George as the pastor of the Baptist church. His appointment caused a split in the congregation. By the 1820s, Hector Peters’ splinter church of 30 members was meeting in a grass shack. The Baptists had by this time become the smallest of the colony’s denominations, slipping from its 1792 status as the largest of all Black Loyalist congregations.
Another L’Abondance passenger, Nathaniel Snowball Jr., had only been five years old when he and his mother had escaped from their enslaver, Richard Murray, in Virginia’s Princess Ann County. His father, Nathaniel Senior, had run away from Mrs. Shrewstin in Norfolk, Virginia at the same time. Just 12 years old when his family found refuge in Birchtown, Nathaniel Jr. would later become a noteworthy figure in the history of Sierra Leone.
Once described as being “factious, perverse, pestilent, disaffected and ignorant” by the colony’s white establishment, Snowball led a group of Methodists to found another settlement outside of Freetown. After trying to make a living on the shores of Pirates’ Bay under Snowball’s governorship, the settlers were eventually compelled to return to Freetown within a year’s time. Nevertheless, his leadership was still valued, and he was elected as a representative of the Black Loyalists in the 1796 elections.
The Snowball family would have their story intertwined with that of another L’Abondance passenger, a blind and lame Black Loyalist by the name of Moses Wilkinson. Also enslaved by a Virginian, Wilkinson somehow managed to escape his master in 1776 (perhaps before smallpox cost him the use of his legs and eyes).
During his time as a refugee in New York City, Wilkinson became the pastor of a large Methodist congregation which eventually followed him to Birchtown. There his followers built a meeting house which, in the fall of 1791, accommodated a crowd of nearly 400 Black Loyalists. They had not gathered to hear a sermon, but to learn about the opportunity to settle in Sierra Leone. Thrilled at the prospect of forming a free Black settlement based “on Christian principles”, Wilkinson and most of his congregation decided to leave Nova Scotia for better prospects.
Under “Daddy Moses”, the Methodists became the largest denomination in Freetown, Sierra Leone. One third to one half of all of its settlers identified themselves as Methodists. Although the church would experience several fractures during the late 1790s, this did not deter Moses Wilkinson. The beloved pastor who had settled in Birchtown at age 36, died sometime in his mid-sixties in an African colony that he considered the Promised Land.
Learn more about the Nova Scotian settlers of Sierra Leone in next week’s Loyalist Trails.
To secure permission to reprint this article, email Stephen Davidson.
From Nova Scotia Museum:
The Black Loyalists arrived in Nova Scotia between 1783 and 1785, as a result of the American Revolution. They were the largest group of people of African birth and of African descent to come to Nova Scotia at any one time.
In 1775, some people in the British North American colonies were arguing with the British government about how much control Great Britain should have over taxes and life in the colonies. The colonists wanted to influence decisions about laws and taxes but had no representation in the British Parliament. They declared themselves independent of Britain when they weren’t able to come to an agreement. The American Revolution, also called the American War of Independence, was the result.
George Ludlow drafted most of New Brunswick’s original (1786) statutes and was for 25 years its first chief justice. However, he is better known nowadays as one of the NB Supreme Court judges who upheld the lawfulness of slavery in NB.
The article “George Duncan Ludlow, UEL” – from the September 1 issue – quotes and paraphrases Carl Wallace’s contribution on him in the Dictionary of Canadian Biography. One of the points the normally meticulous DCB makes, and which you include, is that Ludlow was himself a slave owner. At least so far as his time in NB goes, this is a statement for which no evidence has ever been found.
In correspondence with the DCB, I learned that Wallace’s source for the statement was an ambiguous passage on p. 24 of William Spray’s Blacks in New Brunswick (1972). Read in context, that statement about slave-holding is actually about Chief Justice Ludlow’s brother, Gabriel, who was mayor of Saint John.
To say that there is – to date – no evidence that George Ludlow owned slaves in NB is not to deny that it may have been so. It is simply to observe that people have been looking at the history of slavery in NB for more than a century and no one has spotted the evidence yet.
…David Bell UNB
Frans Compeer, Victoria Branch notes a comment from a member, Inez Walker, UE, who mentioned this at our meeting today (Sat, 7 September). She has friends and friends of friends who had winter homes on the island. Those are gone now, she mentioned, but she also related how the Loyalist house was still there albeit moved from its foundation.
In the summer of 1783, a call for those wishing to help settle Abaco was published in the Royal Gazette in New York City. About 1500 Loyalists left New York and moved to Abaco in August 1783. The Loyalists settled on a small sandy harbor about 6 leagues north of Marsh Harbour near modern Day Treasure Cay. They planned and built the town of Carleton, named after Sir Guy Carleton.
Disputes over food distribution and having been misled about the resources available, led some of these settlers to found a rival town near Marsh Harbour called Maxwell. Conflict between disgruntled settlers and the officials responsible for helping became a constant feature of life on the islands. Sea island cotton was first sown by the settlers in 1785 and although both 1786 and 1787 produced good crops, the 1788 crop was blighted by caterpillars.
Other settlements on the islands were Green Turtle Cay, Man-o-War Cay, and Sandy Point. In the 1790s, a group of Loyalists from the Carolinas arrived on the islands via Florida, founding the isolated settlement of Cherokee Sound.
By Harrison Dressler, 4 September 2019
18th century New Brunswick and Nova Scotia was home to a slew of great and respected doctors and physicians, including but not limited to Drs. William Paine, Samuel Moore, John Gamble, Charles Earle, Thomas Emerson, Azor Betts, David Brown, Nathan and William Howe Smith, and Peter Huggeford, an English surgeon and subject of the last blog entry. However, respected doctors like Huggeford and Paine were not alone in the Maritimes. In fact, they had to consistently fight for a portion of the market share against hordes of small-time peddlers and quacks, selling potions, elixirs, and powders in the hopes of making a quick buck. This was the age of faux doctors and “patent medicine”, proprietary cures marketed to the masses with colourful imagery and striking slogans, all available without prescriptions or a referral.
New Brunswick’s early newspapers were littered with advertisements for these same pills, potions, and powders. One notice posted in the Royal Gazette and New Brunswick Advertiser in 1785 announced the arrival of a number of new medicines at Adino Paddock’s medical store, including Dr. James’s Powder, Turlington’s Balsam, Anderson’s Pills, Godfrey’s Cordial, Daffy’s Elixir of Health, and Hooper’s Female Pills.
By George Kotlik, 4 September 2019
Under the leadership of Royal Governor Patrick Tonyn, East Florida remained in the hands of the British Crown during the Imperial Crisis, not an easy feat to achieve considering the political climate of the colonies in the 1760s and 1770s. This impressive achievement was accomplished through Tonyn’s effective use of Tory refugees, mostly from Georgia and the Carolinas, and their formation into Loyalist military units which would aid in the defense of the colony. One of these units, the East Florida Rangers, raised in 1776 and under the leadership of Thomas Brown, would partake in many actions against the rebels for King and Country. Unlike many of the Loyalist regiments formed during the conflict, this corps was raised by authority of Tonyn himself as governor of the colony, rather than by authority of the British government.
The Rangers’ contributions to the colony were many and included scouting the woods, assisting refugees in reaching the safety of East Florida, defending frontier settlements, gathering provisions, working with Native Americans, plundering farms, and stealing cattle which then fed the growing population of refugees dependent on government support. This military body was so effective, they struck fear in the state government of Georgia and made them wary of a possible invasion from Florida. The East Florida Rangers were mounted on horseback, but were not a cavalry unit per se, using their horses not for fighting but for transportation over the great distances in the region.
By Jim Piecuch, 5 September 2019
The thought of allowing women to serve in combat was considered ridiculous only a few decades ago in most western nations; it was an even more bizarre concept during the American Revolution. Although both the British and Continental armies accepted the presence of female camp followers – usually the wives of soldiers – and issued them rations as compensation for the services they provided as cooks, nurses, and laundresses, there is no evidence that any leaders on either side ever considered putting muskets in the hands of women. There were a few unusual cases, such as that of Deborah Sampson, who disguised herself as a man and enlisted in a Massachusetts regiment, and the fabled “Molly Pitcher” taking her wounded husband’s place in the crew of an artillery piece, but these individuals attracted attention because they were so rare. A few British women attempted to enlist but were quickly discovered. However, had the advice of one bold British woman been heeded, Sir Henry Clinton’s army might have alleviated its shortage of manpower by marching into battle against George Washington’s Continentals with several regiments of musket-bearing, bayonet-wielding women.
The unknown woman who proposed this plan in July 1778 did so in a letter to the editor of a London newspaper, the Morning Post. She identified herself as a resident of Sunbury, a town just outside London, but signed her letter with the pseudonym “Thalestris.”
By Benjamin Huggins, 6 September 2019
In this post, I focus on a rather unique letter to Gen. George Washington during the Revolutionary War: a refusal by a junior officer to serve in the prestigious role of aide-de-camp to Washington.
At the end of March 1778, the general offered Virginia cavalry officer Henry Lee, Jr., a new assignment. The young captain had recently distinguished himself leading his troop of dragoons in a skirmish at Scott’s Farm near Valley Forge, Pa., as well as conducting foraging operations to supply the starving army at its Valley Forge winter encampment. Writing through his aide-de-camp Alexander Hamilton, George Washington made Lee the offer of joining his military family as an aide-de-camp. The proposition entailed a promotion to lieutenant colonel. Few officers, whatever their personal feelings, would have dared to turn down such an offer from the commander in chief, but that is exactly what Lee did. On the last day of the month, he declined the general’s invitation.
Jeffrey Sklansky is a Professor of History at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the author of Sovereign of the Market: The Money Question in Early America. Jeff is an expert in the intellectual and social history of capitalism in early America and he’s agreed to lead us on an investigation of the world of money in early America.
As we explore the world of money in early America, Jeff reveals how money came about in early America; How English and British Americans thought about money; And details about “the money question” early Americans grappled with and how that “money question” informs how we think about money today.
By Kelly Arlene Grant, Public Historian, Sept. 1, 2019. (Kelly is a recipient of a UELAC Scholarship.)
Caps, they are something more of us should just be wearing, all of the time. Not only do they keep the sun off the top of our heads, they keep our hair clean and tidy too. I have even taken to wearing a triangle of cloth on my head on the regular day to day life, since wearing my hair up doesn’t always mean my hats will fit my noggin’. I hate having my head sunburned.
Unless you are dressing in evening wear, where your hair will also be dressed to suit the fabulous ballgown you are wearing, your head should be covered.
Look at these two lovely ladies wearing caps, the Oyster Girl on the left is even wearing her cap underneath her hat. This keeps her hair from sticking to the interior of her hat and pulling, but also allows the hat something else to purchase on. If you have also done your hair nicely, the cap is nailed to your head, and then the hat can be nailed to both cap and hair nicely with some long pins.
I have found recently, that there is no possible way I can make caps for folks that are within a price range people are willing to pay. My latest cap literally took as long to make as my gown did. So many little hems and tiny seams. They should be something that every lady makes for herself though, since the sewing is simple, if repetitive.
“Not Where (Or When), But Who?”
Who in the world are those people in the Loyalist clothing? Be sure to read the answer for the details about where and when (do a “Select All” to see the answer text).
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.
At 1:00 pm, Church Hall of Church of the Epiphany, 96 Main St. W., Kingsville, Ontario with Guest Speaker Ruth Nicholson UE speaking on “Three Loyalist Heroes – Robert Land, Isaac Ferriss & John Cornwall”. Coming events.
Author-historian Eric Schnitzer will discuss his book, Don Troiani’s Campaign to Saratoga – 1777, which is available for sale. This event starts at 6:30 PM and at the Fulton-Montgomery Community College’s Allen House, 2805 NY-67, Johnstown, NY 12095. More details and registration.
Celebrate the arrival of the Fall Fleet in 1783 with a slide show. Luncheon. Guest speaker Mark Strahl MP “My Great Grandfather, a British Home Child” and Presentation of the Phillip E.M. Leith Memorial Award. Luncheon Cost: $28 per person – $10 for a child under 11 years. See details and registration.
Business meeting at 11:00, lunch break and Loyalist Presentation by Kel Hancock of the West Hants Historical Society; event at their museum. More on Twitter.
- The first edition of Phillis Wheatley’s book was aboard the ship, Dartmouth, as it arrived in Boston carrying the East India Company Tea on Nov 28, 1773. Ms. Wheatley was the first enslaved African and third female to publish a book of poetry.
- 6 September 1757 Happy Birthday to the Marquis de Lafayette who was born On This Day.
- “The Marquis [de Lafayette] you know. He is dangerously amiable, sensible, polite, affible insinuating pleasing hospitable indefatiguable and ambitious.” Abigail Adams to Mercy Otis Warren, 10 May 1785
- Indigenous American habits – smoking pipes, drinking chocolate – transformed European social customs in the “Age of Reason.” Why does it never occur to anyone that Europeans also borrowed Indigenous ideas (e.g. about liberty and other “enlightened” concepts) not just soft drugs?
- The American Revolution Institute acquires hundreds of items each year for its library and museum collections. Here is a selection of the most important, rare, unusual or intriguing. Each contributes to the great aim of the Institute – to ensure proper understanding and appreciation of the enduring importance of the American Revolution: Lost Revolutionary War Journal Found; A Pensioner of the Revolution; Landmark French Map of Yorktown; “Thunder Box” of the Battlefield; Rare Peale Mezzotint of Lafayette.
- This Week in History
- 7 Sept 1630 Governor Winthrop announced the foundation of the town of Boston. Boston, Massachusetts is named after the town of Boston, in the English county of Lincolnshire, from which several prominent colonists emigrated.
- 2 Sept 1750 First service was held at St. Paul’s (Anglican) Church, Halifax. Built from timbers cut in Boston, it is the oldest surviving Protestant church in Canada and the oldest building in Halifax. It was also designated as Halifax’s first garrison church.
- 2 Sept 1769 Benjamin Franklin warns against the dangers of “law enforcement” antagonizing an already hostile people.
- 5 Sept 1774 Gen. Frederic Haldimand wrote to Gen. Thomas Gage reporting that news of the “Powder Alarm” had reached New York, and Gen. Gage wrote to Gen. Haldimand ordering him to bring all available troops from New York to Boston.
- 8 Sept 1774 the British army went to the Charlestown battery to remove its cannons, only to find that overnight townspeople had brought “a number of [ox] teams, such as carry ship timbers,” and hauled all that ordnance away.
- 6 Sept 1775 Continental quartermaster general Thomas Mifflin told partners in Philadelphia “you never had a better Chance to do Business” with “fine blue Cloths & buff” – the fabrics of the uniform that Gen. Washington wore & other officers wanted.
- 7 Sept 1775 the Continental schooner “Hannah” captured the merchant ship “Unity” back from the Royal Navy. It was owned by John Langdon, a New Hampshire delegate to the Continental Congress, so there would be no prize money.
- 4 Sept 1776 Lee, Gerry, & Wilcott sign Decl. of Independence, leaving only 2 more to sign.
- 3 Sept 1780 The Royal Navy captured HENRY LAURENS at sea near Newfoundland. Laurens had served as President of the Continental Congress and as American Minister to the Netherlands. He was held in the Tower Of London for Treason.
- 6 Sept 1781 Traitor Benedict Arnold orders burning of entire city of New London, Connecticut to destroy supplies.
- 5 Sept 1781 French block British from evacuating troops at Yorktown in Battle of the Capes.
- 3 Sept 1783 Treaty of Paris
ends the Revolutionary War.
- Breakfast Casserole In The 18th Century? – Egg And Bacon Pie
- Clothing and Related:
- Georgian Makeup Tutorial: Join Fashion Historian Amber Butchart and Makeup Artist Rebecca Butterworth as we show you how to create not one, but two, history-inspired makeup looks in this tutorial.
- 18th Century dress, Robe à la Francaise, 1770-75, In China yellow was associated with the Emperor, as chinoiserie gained popularity in Europe so did the colour
- 18th Century dress, this “robe parée”, is a ball dress, the decoration consists of appliqué painted flowers, gauze flounces & extremely refined embroideries, 1780-85, French, via Musée des Tissus de Lyon
- Eye-catching patterning on this 18th Century dress, a Robe a la Francaise worn by Madame Oberkampf to an audience with Marie Antoinette in 1775
- 18th Century dress, Robe à la Française, The open skirt section is decorated with a wide embroidered strip, bordered with a strip of lilac satin with appliqués & feminine neo-classical designs, 1770-1790
- 18th Century men’s Summery waistcoat, woven silk detailed with fruit-picking couples & decorative garlands, c.1790’s
- 18th Century men’s 3 piece suit, 1770’s England, via ROM Toronto
- 18th Century men’s waistcoat, 1780’s The influence of Neo-classical design is evident in the decoration. Medallions of twill silk minutely & skilfully painted in black with mythological classical figures have been applied to the front & collar
- 18th Century men’s Moire silk frock coat and matching waistcoat, 1750’s
- Wine-making, medieval-style. Pluck. Crush. Cork. Medieval calendars remind us that September is the month for making wine. If planting and pruning vines fall to the month of March, September is the time for cashing in on all the effort. To turn grapes into wine has never been an easy task. During the summer months, the vines grow heavy with fruit. September is the time to start picking the grapes and prepare them for the arduous journey towards vinification.
- Another for the 1790s pink-hair-powder crowd, plus bangs. Detail, “Miniature Portrait of a Revolutionary” by Jean-Alexandre BOQUET (1752-1828) The damage to the blue paint make it look like he’s wearing stone-washed denim….;)
As time permits, we add information to the Loyalist Directory. The latest additions and updates are as follows:
- Savage, Edward – from Linda Mazrimas
Please help us build the directory by contributing information. Contact email@example.com for guidance.
I was sorry to hear of the passing of Okill Stuart in last week’s Loyalist Trails (Last Post: G.B. Okill Stuart, UE). He was a friend of my parents in St Lambert – both were members of the Horticultural group.
I got to know him better as the last President of the 14th Field Regiment Association. They worked to have the Juno Beach Centre built to commemorate Canada’s role in World War II.
He was a very lively person and certainly lived a very full life.
I will miss his phone calls at Christmas time when we shared his memories of my parents.
D-Day veteran Stuart remembered as a dedicated leader: “You name it, Okill was part of it. He was a dedicated and helpful leader,” said Bruce Bolton, a former commanding officer of the Black Watch Highland Regiment who will play the bagpipes at Stuart’s funeral. Read the obituary in the Montreal Gazette.
An active and well respected former member of three branches of the UELAC passed away on June 9, 2019 in the Palliative Care Centre at the VG Site, QEII Health Sciences Centre, Halifax, N.S. Alma became a member of Heritage Branch while living in Montreal and in 1978 proved her ancestry to United Empire Loyalist John Ogden. After moving to the Halifax area she joined the Halifax – Dartmouth Branch of the UELAC and was a strong contributor to organizing and participating in events over several years. When the Nova Scotia Branch of the UELAC was formed she took on the role as the Branch’s first Secretary. They were regular attendees at Nova Scotia Branch events and will be sadly missed.
Alma also volunteered for 23 years at the Palliative Care Centre in Halifax. She volunteered at St. Andrew’s United Church, Halifax where she ran the Drop-In Centre for five years and was a member of the Pastoral Care Team. She was an active member of the Cole Harbour Heritage Society. She worked for CIBC both in Montreal and Halifax.
Alma was born in Bathurst, N.B. on June 21, 1941 and was a daughter of Pearl and Edgar “Toots” Gammon. She and husband Roy recently celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary.
Alma is survived by husband, Roy; daughter, Karen O’Keeffe (Seamus) of Toronto, and granddaughter, Tara of Orangeville, Ont.; also her daughter, Cheryl Fletcher of Victoria, B.C., and grandchildren, Matt and Nick. Also survived by sisters, Dorothy Gammon, Bathurst, N.B.; and Betty (Kerry) Mattila, Burritts Rapids, Ont.; niece, Barbie Fitters, Morelia, Mexico; and nephew, Richard Fitters, Bathurst.
A service of celebration of Alma’s life was held in St. Andrew’s United Church, Halifax on June 14th. She has been cremated and her ashes will be buried alongside her parents in Bathurst, N.B. To leave an on-line condolence, please visit: www.jasnowfuneralhome.com.
…Brian McConnell, UE, NS Branch