Loyalist Trails Newsletter 2021-08 (February 21, 2021)

In this issue:

  • UELAC Conference 2021: Registration is Open
  • The Many Legacies of Frederick William Hecht: Part Three by Stephen Davidson UE
  • Connecting Canada and Sierra Leone
  • JAR: Colonel Tye: Leader of Loyalist Raiders—and Runaway Slave
  • Ben Franklin’s World: Whitney Plantation Museum
  • Provincial Award for Heritage Excellence; Heritage Trust recognizes William Terry
  • Book: The Loyalists of Digby by Brian McConnell UE
  • JAR: The Impeachment of Senator William Blount—the First in American History
  • Toronto’s Oldest Continuously Inhabited Home
  • William Tudor Falls In Love With A Loyalist
  • Query: What Impact did Loyalists have on the UK?
  • Events:
    • Fort Plain Museum: Celebrating George Washington’s Birthday
    • Gov. Simcoe Branch: AGM and Speakers Wed. 3 March at 7:30 pm
  • From the Twittersphere and Beyond
  • Last Post: CLIFFORD, Joanne Marjorie 1937 – 2021; Memories to Cherish



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UELAC Conference 2021: Registration is Open
Hosted by Bridge Annex , May 27-31
The UELAC 2021 Virtual Conference & Historical Event is now welcoming registrations!
We have created an interactive and memorable experience that will immerse you in Loyalist and related history. Visit our interactive map and explore what you can expect May 27-31, 2021.
Our All-Access Pass is an amazing value at only $50.00 – attend all Live presentations and events, and get a free music download, courtesy of our musical entertainment, the renowned Celtic group, The Brigadoons!
UELAC Conference-specific information and AGM registration for UELAC members will be posted when ready (no additional fees).
Come be part of the story this May! www.uelbridgeannex.com/2021
NOTE: Links to Live events, and free music download, will be sent out the week of May 10, 2021 to all who have registered.

The Many Legacies of Frederick William Hecht: Part Three of Four
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
Mrs. Mehetable Mowat was 36 years old and living in St. Andrew’s, New Brunswick when Frederick Hecht, Fort Howe’s former commissary general, died in Digby, Nova Scotia. His death was reported in the February 6, 1894 edition of Saint John Gazette, and if that newspaper were sold in St. Andrew’s, then Mrs. Mowat would no doubt have paused to remember the happy events of November 14, 1786.
That was the date of Mehetable’s marriage to Captain David Mowat. One of their more interesting wedding gifts was a 92-line poem written on birch bark. Its author was her good friend and bridesmaid, Anne Hecht. The poem would go on to be valued and studied as one of the earliest examples of poetry by a Loyalist woman. But in 1786, Anne was only noteworthy for being the daughter of Frederick William Hecht.
Mehetable (or “Hetty” as her friends called her) was the 12th child of Dr. John Caleff. A native of Ipswich, Massachusetts, John had served as a surgeon and physician for the British during the Seven Years War, and maintained his loyalty to the crown during the American Revolution. Following a number of attacks by rebel mobs, Caleff took his family to Maine’s Penobscot region. When that territory was designated as part of the newly formed United States of America, the doctor and his family moved to Saint John, New Brunswick.
Caleff was appointed as surgeon for the troops at Fort Howe where Frederick William Hecht, another Loyalist, was the senior assistant commissary general. In addition to serving as surgeon and chaplain while in Penobscot, Caleff had once served as the commissary for that part of Maine. He and Hecht would have been able to share tales of the trials and challenges of trying to provide supplies to both soldiers and civilians.
The Caleffs and Hechts may have met for social occasions outside of their duties at Fort Howe for over time Hetty Caleff and Anne Hecht became best friends. As Hetty was 18 when she married 38 year-old Captain David Mowat, it is safe to assume that Anne Hecht must have been around the same age as her newlywed friend.
Anne’s poem, though written by a single woman, is a list of advice for an 18th century wife and is thus of particular interest to 21st century historians and sociologists. Whether Anne collected these gems of wisdom from her reading or from observing Loyalist couples of her parents’ generation is unknown. Miss Hecht did not seem to have an especially positive regard for marriage. By the 12th line of her poem, she wrote:

Small is the province of a wife
And narrow is her sphere in life,
Within that sphere to walk aright
Should be her principal delight.

Nevertheless, the poem has come to be seen as a significant one in Canadian literature. The University of Toronto Libraries includes it on their Representative Poetry Online website. The scholars who analyzed Anne’s work assume that it was read aloud at the wedding reception.
Shortly after participating in her friend’s wedding and then overseeing a local ball in Saint John, Anne moved to Digby, Nova Scotia with her parents where her father became the “commissary of musters”.
Hetty and her husband would eventually settle in St. Andrew’s, New Brunswick. They had 12 children, the third of whom, interestingly enough, was named Ann. No records exist to indicate that the two friends maintained any correspondence following Hetty’s wedding in 1786.
Anne was still unmarried when her father died in 1804. By this time, one historian described her as being extremely deaf. Her mother (also Anne) was an invalid, so as she neared her 40th birthday, the Hechts’ daughter would not have been seen as the most ideal match. Nevertheless, her father’s will held out hope that he would one day have grandchildren.
Frederick Hecht left “all his estate to his wife during her life, and after her decease to his daughter Anne during her life, and after her decease equally to and among the heirs of the body begotten of my daughter Anne.
Whatever Hecht’s estate may have been, it was not enough to sustain Anne and her mother. In 1809, she wrote to the British government, asking it to provide a pension for herself and her mother.
Sometime after 1812, Anne Hecht’s life took a dramatic turn. Colonel Isaac Hatfield, a former commander of the Corps of Loyalists in New York’s Westchester County, asked her to be his third wife. His second wife, Mary, had died at age 58 in June of 1812. The tongues of Digby’s gossips wagged as the Loyalist veteran (now in his 60s) took 40-something Anne as his bride.
They shook their heads in amazement when –within a year of the wedding– the couple had a child. Local tradition recalls that Anne’s child was “far from beautiful either in form or face” and that the officiating priest at the local Anglican Church hesitated to christen the baby. The child died in infancy, and Anne died –of unspecified causes and at an undisclosed date– soon after.
When Anne’s husband drew up his will in December of 1821, he made a reference to “his late dear wife, Ann, daughter of the late Fred. N. Hecht, Esq.” but neglected to say how long she had been dead. (Note how the spelling of her name differs from that given in her father’s will.)
As for Anne Hecht’s girlhood chum, Mehetable Caleff Mowat outlived both her best friend and her husband. David Mowat died at sea in 1810, having been Hetty’s husband for 24 years. Their last child, born in that year, would grow up never knowing her father. Hetty would be a widow for the next 50 years. She died in St. Andrew’s at the age of 92 on December 19, 1860. The poem that her friend Anne Hecht had originally written on birch bark had long since been transcribed onto paper and remained within the family.
Frederick William Hecht’s desire to see his estate passed on to his daughter and her heirs died with Anne’s silent passing. His greatest legacy would not be the land given to an heir, but it would be a daughter whose poem for a girlhood friend would be recognized as a significant contribution to early Canadian literature.
Learn of the last of Frederick Hecht’s legacies in next week’s Loyalist Trails.
(Editor’s note: To read Anne Hecht’s poem, visit:
https://rpo.library.utoronto.ca/poems/advice-mrs-mowat )
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at stephendavids@gmail.com.

Connecting Canada and Sierra Leone
at @KnowhistoryCDN
Did you know that Canada and the West African country of Sierra Leone share a connection? It begins with the American Revolution. Thousands of former slaves fled north to Nova Scotia as British Loyalists during the Revolutionary War.
Moving on to Sierra Leone, 1792, NSM.
They faced severe discrimination upon arrival, such as lower wages and smaller land grants. In 1791, Yoruba-born Black Loyalist Thomas Peters travelled to England to report on the harsh living conditions faced by African Americans in Nova Scotia.
Peters met with the Sierra Leone Company, which was planning a new settlement in West Africa. After this meeting, over 1,000 Black Loyalists registered to resettle in Sierra Leone in 1792.
They arrived in Sierra Leone and settled around a large kapok tree, which became known as the Cotton Tree. The settlers prayed under the tree and named the peninsular land “Freetown.” Freetown is still the capital of Sierra Leone.
The same Cotton Tree still stands tall in the bustling centre of Freetown and is an incredibly important cultural symbol and religious site for many Sierra Leoneans.
KH Associate Mike took this photograph of the Cotton Tree while on a 2020 research trip in Sierra Leone.

JAR: Colonel Tye: Leader of Loyalist Raiders—and Runaway Slave
by Joseph E. Wroblewski 17 February 2021
(NOTE: Tye was the subject of Stephen Davidson’s submission to Loyalist Trails away back on May 13, 2007).
John Corlis (sometimes spelled Corlies) was a Quaker land owner who resided in Shrewsbury Township, Monmouth County, New Jersey. He along with his mother owned six slaves. It has been reported that Corlis was a “harsh master” and whipped his slaves for trivial reasons. In the 1760s, Quakers in New Jersey had begun to emancipate their slaves when they turned twenty-one, but even after elders of the Shrewsbury Meeting met with Corlis, he still refused. One of his slaves, twenty-one-year-old Titus (also referred to as Cornelius Titus) decided to take his fate into his own hands and ran away. As a result, the following advertisement appeared in the Pennsylvania Gazette:

Three Pounds Reward
Run away from the subscriber, living in Shrewsbury, in the county of Monmouth, New Jersey, a Negroe man, named Titus, but may probably change his name; he is about 21 years of age, not very black, near 6 feet high; had on a grey homespun coat, brown breeches, blue and white stockings, and took with him a wallet, drawn up at one end with a string, in which was a quantity of clothes. Whoever takes said Negroe, and secures him in any gaol, or brings him to me, shall be entitled to the above reward of Three Pounds, proc. And all reasonable charges paid by John Corlis.
Nov. 8, 1775.

Coincidently, the Royal Governor of Virginia, John Murray, Lord Dunmore, gave his proclamation on November 7, 1775 that if a slave abandoned his Patriot owner and joined the British he would earn his freedom. Some of these runaway slaves were formed into a military unit known as the Ethiopian Regiment. They fought in two engagements in Virginia but were eventually evacuated to New York in August 1776. In a number of stories and articles about Colonel Tye it is reported that when he fled Corlis he learned of Dunmore’s proclamation, made his way to Virginia and joined the Ethiopian Regiment, but there is no documentation for this action. One historian, Graham R. Hodges, even places Tye at the Battle of Monmouth where he supposedly captured an American officer and took him to New York. Read more…

Ben Franklin’s World: Whitney Plantation Museum
Ibrahima Seck is a member of the History Department at the University Cheikh Anta Diop in Dakar, Senegal, the author of Bouki Fait Gombo: A History of the Slave Community of Habitation Haydel (Whitney Plantation) Louisiana, 1750-1860, and the Director Research of the Whitney Plantation Museum in Louisiana.
As we go behind-the-scenes of Whitney Plantation and through the history of slavery in early Louisiana, Ibrahima reveals details about the creation of the Whitney Plantation Museum; Strategies the Whitney Plantation Museum employs to help its visitors grapple with the very tough subject of slavery; And, lots of information about the history and development of Whitney Plantation and about the enslaved who worked and lived on the plantation. Listen in…

Provincial Award for Heritage Excellence; Heritage Trust recognizes William Terry
by Monte Sonnenberg 19 Feb 2021
A passionate promoter, educator and student of Norfolk history has been recognized with a Lieutenant-Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award.
William Terry of Simcoe was honoured with the Lieutenant-Governor’s Lifetime Achievement Award during the Ontario Heritage Trust’s annual Heritage Week celebration, which this year occurred Feb. 15-21.
The Norfolk Historical Society nominated Terry for his tireless efforts in the area of genealogy and research on the significant impact United Empire Loyalists had on the settlement and development of Norfolk County. Read more…

Book: The Loyalists of Digby by Brian McConnell UE
What better day to announce publication of my next historical book than Nova Scotia Heritage Day. Research for my 5th book, entitled “The Loyalists of Digby“, began five years ago.
The Town and County of Digby in Nova Scotia have a fascinating Loyalist history. From the Admiral Digby Well to the Acaciaville Baptist Church both are connected through history to the United Empire Loyalists and Black Loyalists who arrived in the 1780s as refugees. This book considers these historic connections.
It also does so with chapters on individual Loyalists, like Mary Getcheus, John and Richard Hill, James Moody, and the Hon. Alfred Gilpin Jones, who was the first President of the Loyalist Association in Nova Scotia and a native of Weymouth.
It also explains how the Loyalists obtained the name of Digby for their settlement and considers the origin of Brinley Town, the community for Black Loyalists. As well it identifies Loyalist place names in Digby and Digby County and some of the Loyalists who did not remain.
The book is available in paperback and kindle format.
Learn more: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08WK2L9ZX/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_imm_awdb_SES61H9QAB57MF6P85KA
Brian McConnell UE

JAR: The Impeachment of Senator William Blount—the First in American History
by Andrew A. Zellers-Frederick 16 February 2021
It is easy to suggest that William Blount made no significant contribution to the development of the United States. His achievements, although not negligible, were only on par at best, and far less than many of his more famous contemporaries. Blount served in the North Carolina militia during the American Revolution, but with little acclaim as a paymaster. From a prominent and influential Southern colonial-era family, he was an unremarkable member of his state’s House of Commons and later the state’s Senate. He served as a delegate to the Confederation Congress, unsuccessfully seeking its presidency, and to the Constitutional Convention where his contributions were little better than negligible. As Territorial Governor of the Southwest and Superintendent of Indian Affairs, he performed adequately. As one of Tennessee’s first federal senators, Blount finally achieved historical immortality, but for reasons he did not originally envision. He has the infamous distinction of being the first federal official, elected or appointed, to be impeached under the new republic’s Constitution for “high crimes and misdemeanors.” The trigger for the impeachment was a letter in Blount’s own hand implicating him and his followers in a scheme to forcibly seize Spanish Florida and Louisiana for the British Crown.
…William Blount, a third-generation American and eldest of eight siblings, was born in 1749 on his influential family’s Rosenfeld Plantation located near the Pamlico Sound region of North Carolina. The Blount family interests included cotton and tobacco farming with slave labor; the raising of cattle and hogs; the production and sale of maritime tar, pitch and turpentine; the mining of minerals, metals and additional ores; corn and the milling of other grains; saw mills and distilleries; and money lending. From his boyhood, Blount and his brothers “were accustomed to versatility of enterprise.”
…The Blount Conspiracy originated with John Chisholm, a former American Loyalist who served as a British soldier; the nebulous plot centered on seizing the remains of Spain’s decaying Southwest American Empire, with the support of the British government. This requested support was in the form of warships and military supplies; the project would be aided by Blount’s sympathetic Native American allies. The reward for Great Britain’s actions would be the transfer of the seized land’s title to the British Crown. Read more…

Toronto’s Oldest Continuously Inhabited Home
By Karen Longwell
One of Toronto’s oldest houses, built in the late 1700s or early 1800s, has the distinction of being the oldest continuously inhabited residence in the city — but for one Toronto couple, it’s home.
In 2000, Don Procter and Beverly Dalys bought the home at 469 Broadview Ave. in rough condition, but it came with history, which was important to the couple.
The home was designated as a heritage property in 1995.
The couple had heard about the historic home and when they decided it was time to move back to Toronto from Niagara, they discovered it was for sale.
It wasn’t in great shape and had been on the market for a while. There was “broken down plaster” and “it was ripe with mold,” Procter said.
A few years before they bought it, the previous owner discovered a log cabin under the plaster walls — before that no one knew the home’s history.
That owner traced the history of the home back to John Cox, a United Empire Loyalist who was granted land east of the Don River in 1796. The original log home, now referred to as the John Cox Cottage or John Cox Home, is now covered with stucco and a later addition.
The heritage documents say the log part of the home was possibly built sometime before 1807. Read more…

William Tudor Falls In Love With A Loyalist
New England Historical Society. Source: Boston 1775 blog by J.L. Bell. Updated in 2021
William Tudor fell in love with a loyalist. It was an awkward position for a rebel who would become the first judge advocate general of the Continental Army.
Worse, his loyalist love interest helped British soldiers wounded at the Battle of Bunker Hill.
Her name was Delia Jarvis.
Like William, Delia Jarvis came from one of Boston’s elite families. She was born in 1752 to Elias and Deliverance Atkins Jarvis. Her granddaughter, Delia Stewart Parnell, described her as ‘sprightly, beautiful and highly accomplished.’
“Her hair was dark auburn, her eyes deep blue, her face lovely and beaming with kind feeling for everyone,” wrote her granddaughter.
Delia’s loyalist family served tea, the forbidden beverage. In Boston, that amounted to a crime.
William Tudor was the only son of Deacon John Tudor, a prominent, wealthy and miserly Bostonian. William graduated from Harvard in 1869, already an overt rebel and patriot. He studied law under John Adams, who praised him for his ‘clear head and honest faithful heart.’
Adams noticed his young law clerk ‘s unhappiness, and wrote to his father asking him to give him more money or a small piece of property. Adams saw the young man barely had enough money for rent and the laundry bill.
William had also fallen in love with Delia Jarvis on their first meeting. She felt ambivalent toward him. Later he would confess to a struggle between his feelings for her and his love for his country. Read more…

Query: What Impact did Loyalists have on the UK?
The story of the influence of loyalists in the 18th century and early 19th century history of Canada is well documented. As someone who was born in the UK, and grew up there, only to move to the US to explore my American and Canadian heritage. I’ve been interested in the impact North America had on the UK.
My New England Ancestors didn’t return to England during or after the English Civil War but certainly knew of neighbors and pastors who returned to England to fight for Parliament. Massachusetts Governor Henry Vane, after he left Massachusetts is probably the best example becoming a prominent Parliamentarian.
It was that interest in early American history that caught my imagination for the impact on the UK by loyalists. Especially after reading a couple of books in the last few years “Tories” by Thomas Allen and “Liberty’s Exiles” by Maya Jasanoff.
To that purpose I’d like to make a general call for untold stories of exiles emigrating to the United Kingdom, and having an influence on the UK through profession or politics? What was the impact on the families of the Exiles? Working with Doug Grant a couple of years ago we estimated how many folks moved to the UK after the American War of Independence. But what are some of those stories? Please share them.
John Cass is based in the Boston Massachusetts area, originally from the UK. His loyalist ancestor, Josiah Cass, fled Vermont and moved to Canada, eventually settling in Hawkesbury.
John Cass <genejohncass@gmail.com>


Fort Plain Museum: Celebrating George Washington’s Birthd
Three events in three nights. Click for registration

  • George Washington and the Nemesis of War – Monday, February 22, 2021 – 6:00 PM ET by Edward G. Lengel Register
  • The Only Unavoidable Subject of Regret“: George Washington, Slavery, and the Enslaved Community at Mount Vernon – Thursday, February 25, 2021 – 7:00 PM ET by Mary V. Thompson Register
  • Remembering George Washington: In Context – Monday, March 1, 2021 – 7:00 PM ET by James Kirby Martin Register

Gov. Simcoe Branch: AGM and Speakers Wed. 3 March at 7:30 pm

The AGM has traditionally been quite short, less than 15 minutes. We will endeavour to do the same this year. It will be followed by three or four of our members and guests offering a vignette about something historical, a member of their Loyalist’s family, a descendant or something else entirely different.

  • Joyce Crook, a long-time member and nonagenarian will recall a certain aspect of her youth when growing up in what is now part of Toronto. She will describe a link to the Dieppe Raid of August 19, 1942, a trip and a commemoration in her local community.
  • Nancy Conn UE will speak about the early life of her Loyalist grandmother. Born in Rawdon Township, Hastings County in 1894, she graduated from College a century ago.
  • Beth Adams UE from Toronto Branch will talk about her 4 times great grandfather. Hear about his epic journey from his birth in New Jersey in 1777 to his death in Port Burwell, Ontario in 1853. He survived 2 wars and built up a successful business as captain of a schooner out of Digby, Nova Scotia, before walking away to follow his daughter and her family to the wilds of Upper Canada to start all over again.

Be sure to wear some historical or Loyalist item to show off at the meeting.
Email Doug Grant loyalist.trails@uelac.org for the link

From the Twittersphere and Beyond

  • Hanoverian Flavours on the King’s Table in the Long Eighteenth Century — Adam Crymble and Sarah Fox. The paper presents their research into the evidence for food consumption contained within the Georgian papers. Illustrated video (47 min)
  • This Week in History
  • Clothing and Related:
  • Townsends
  • Miscellaneous
    • I LIVE IN HOPE, an anthem for our time engraved on the inside of a silver 16th century posey ring that I found on the Thames foreshore – LondonMudlark
    • @reallywallpaper Sevestre-Le Blond, Jean-Baptiste (1728-1805). Undetermined function. “Domino paper with blue and yellow ribbons and intersecting geometric patterns framing 2 floral patterns: stem carrying a berry & stem with 3 tri-lobed leaves; these alternating on a striped background.”
    • Spa Town Tunbridge Wells: Its History, By Geri Walton. The spa town Tunbridge Wells is located in western Kent and is the oldest watering place next to Bath. In the late 1700s it was known to offer pure air and healthy waters of the chalybeate type. It became popular at the time of Charles I when his physicians sent his wife, Henrietta Maria, to the springs to “re-establish her health” after she gave birth to Prince Charles in 1630. When first discovered the springs began to draw “the young and the gay, as well as the diseased and the old.” Read more…

Last Post: CLIFFORD, Joanne Marjorie 1937 – 2021; Memories to Cherish
Passed away in her sleep in St. Catharines, Ontario on Thursday, February 18, 2021. Born in Hamilton, Ontario, on September 6, 1937, daughter of Henry (Jimmy) and Eleanor Field, step daughter of Jean Field, Joanne attended Hamilton Central Secondary School before taking work at the Hamilton Board of Education.
Joanne packed a lot of living into her 84 years with Fred, her husband of more than five decades faithfully beside her to her end. Sister to Peter (Diane) predeceased by her brother Michael (Linda), she was the fiercely proud mother of four children; sons Lorne (Jeannine) and Joe (Debbie), daughter Nancy Gore (Kent), and son Andrew. As a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother she was known for entertaining and whimsical songs and stories.
Joanne’s quiet leadership influence spanned several generations guiding young people as a CGIT leader and then 5th Thorold Wolf Cub Pack Akela. Joanne shared her pride of being a member of Colonel John Butler Branch of the United Empire Loyalists with Fred (whose Loyalist ancestor is George Cockle (Caughill)). She was a passionate host of her Niagara home.
A lover of travel, and with Fred always beside her, the journey was more than the destination. At home, they shared their passion for their individual creative interests together. With Joanne at her quilting table and Fred in his wood working shop, they would regularly engage in spirited discussion about who would stop work on the project of the moment to make their lunch.
Joanne discovered her faith at Mount Hamilton United Church at a very early age, and it guided her quietly but steadily through her life. Her love of music was something she shared with her mother.
Thanks to Dr. J and the staff at the Royal Henley for their significant patience and caring are warranted and acknowledged. A celebration of life will be held later. Donations to Scouts Canada or the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada. Please share your condolences, memories and photos at www.pleasantviewcemetery.ca.
Col. John Butler (Niagara) Branch members are saddened to hear of the passing of Joanne Clifford. Joanne was a member of Colonel John Butler (Niagara) Branch for almost 25 years. Although she did not have Loyalist ancestors, she was a true Loyalist at heart. Through the years she worked to promote the Branch serving as Secretary, Newsletter Editor and Lunch Co-ordinator. She and her husband Fred attended almost every Branch meeting and event in Loyalist attire. They encouraged many to join the Branch, and often they too became active volunteers. She will be missed.
Bev Craig UE

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