In this issue:

  • The Flag of Taunton: 1774 and 2021
  • William and Priscilla McKinstry: Forgotten Loyalist Ancestors – Part 3 by Stephen Davidson UE
  • Justus Sherwood, British Spy
  • JAR: Sir Henry Clinton’s Generalship
  • British Perspective American Revolution
  • JAR: “Spirits of Independence”: Ten Taverns of the Revolutionary War Era
  • Riots in the Colonies. Anti-Vaxxers
  • Ben Franklin’s World: From Inoculation to Vaccination, Part 1
  • Borealia: Book Review: Wounded Feelings: How to Sue for Emotional Distress
  • Lloydtown – Once a rebel stronghold
  • Events:
    • History Author Talks. OH CANADA! – Tues 4 May 2021 07:00 PM ET
    • Fort Plain Museum: After Saratoga: The War that Britain Nearly Won. Mon. 3 May @7:00PM ET
    • Gov. Simcoe Branch: Andrew Denike: my Loyalist’s family in Europe and North America Wed 5 May
    • Victoria Branch, Loyalists Cemeteries in Eastern Ontario by Stuart Lyall Manson UE Sat. 15 May 1:00PM ET
  • From the Twittersphere and Beyond
  • Last Post Addendum. FRANCIS UE, Lynn
  • Last Post: BEDFORD-JONES, The Right Reverend Michael Hugh Harold

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Editor’s Note: The Flag of Taunton in 1774 and 2021
In last week’s issue of Loyalist Trails in Stephen’s article about William and Priscilla McKinstry, the Town of Taunton was described with a reference to its flag.
“As tensions grew between Massachusetts and the British government, Taunton decided to adopt its own flag. Created in 1774, the banner consisted of a red ensign that featured the Queen Anne’s flag in the upper left-hand corner and the words “Liberty and Union” in white in the main body.
It was among the flags carried by those at the Capital Hill Insurrection on January 6, 2021.”
See pictures.

William and Priscilla McKinstry: Forgotten Loyalist Ancestors – Part Three of Four
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
It only takes one generation of a family to forget their history for the names of ancestors to be lost. And if there is a “politically incorrect” grandparent in the family tree, they are the most likely candidates to have their stories suppressed or lost entirely.
Dr. William and Priscilla McKinstry were Loyalists in Taunton, Massachusetts, a town that had been “taken over” by the Sons of Liberty before the first shots were fired in the American Revolution. Following William’s death, the family settled in Haverhill, Massachusetts on the border with New Hampshire.
One of their eight children served in the British Navy, but what were the loyalties of the seven McKinstrys who had been Loyalist refugees for three years of their childhood? Were the political convictions of their parents and oldest brother a source of embarrassment or family pride?
The brother who served in the British Navy is the most likely candidate for cherishing the story of his parents, but he died unmarried and “without issue”. Six of his siblings had good reasons to fail to pass on the stories of their parents’ trials during the American Revolution.
The McKinstrys had four sons, but like their oldest, none of the other boys found wives and so failed to pass on the family name as well as the family’s stories. John died at age 56, a merchant in Boston. Thomas died at age 26, twenty years after his family sought refuge in Halifax. David was only 27 when he died in a shipwreck on a merchant vessel from New York City.
If the McKinstry story of persecution and service were to be passed down through the generations, it would have to be preserved by the four daughters in the family. But the political leanings of their husbands made that rather unlikely for three of the sisters.
Sarah married Major Caleb Stark who fought for the Patriots during the revolution and who was the son of General John Stark. The latter is known as the “hero of Bennington” and has subsequently had two statues erected in his honour. (Have you ever seen New Hampshire license plates? General Stark’s words, “Live Free or Die” became the state’s motto and are now found on its license plates.) Sarah and Caleb had ten children, but it is a pretty safe wager that when the family heard stories of the revolution, it was the Stark version of the war and not that of the Loyalist McKinstrys.
Mary, the twin sister of Thomas McKinstry, married Benjamin Willis of Haverhill, Massachusetts. He is noted as “being well known in Massachusetts and Maine … for his wealth and social position”. The few references to him recount how he and his mother had to flee the flames of Charlestown, Massachusetts “without a backward look to their perishing property”.
The British fired red-hot cannon balls into Charlestown during the Battle of Bunker Hill, setting its buildings on fire. This makes it very unlikely that Benjamin would allow his wife to recount any stories of her Loyalist relatives to their 7 children. And so William and Priscilla were “forgotten” once again.
Elizabeth McKinstry married Samuel Sparhawk, a man five years her junior. At one time in his career, Samuel served as the Secretary of State for New Hampshire (You remember, right? The state that wanted to “live free or die”.) The Sparhawks had 3 children, but it is doubtful that they learned much about their Loyalist grandparents.
The story of the known Canadian descendants of Dr. William and Priscilla McKinstry concludes in next week’s Loyalist Trails.
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at

Justus Sherwood, British Spy
Justus Sherwood was many things: early settler in Vermont, land speculator, and member of the Green Mountain Boys.
He was also a British spy.
In fact, during the American Revolution, Sherwood was one of the British government’s most trusted agents in North America, admired for his bravery, intelligence and loyalty. Sherwood was eventually appointed chief of the northern division of the British Secret Service, acting as spymaster from a fort on North Hero Island.
That Sherwood would rub elbows with the likes of Ethan and Ira Allen and other members of the Green Mountain Boys, then swear allegiance to the king, might strike some as the height of treachery. But you have to see things from Sherwood’s perspective. The Green Mountain Boys weren’t created as an anti-British group; they were anti-Yorker. In the years before the Revolution, they had purchased land through the auspices of New Hampshire and therefore fiercely rejected efforts by New York’s colonial government to issue grants to the same land.
When the war started, Vermonters had to choose a side. Many, including Sherwood, remained loyal to the Crown, while others backed the Revolution. And some, including the Allens, fought for the Colonial cause but perhaps reserved the option of returning to the British side until the outcome of the war became clear. Read more…

JAR: Sir Henry Clinton’s Generalship
by John Ferling 27 April 2021
“My fate is hard,” Sir Henry Clinton remarked after learning that he had been named commander of the British army in May 1778, adding that he expected to someday bear “a considerable portion of the blame” for Britain’s “inevitable” lack of success.
There were good reasons for Clinton’s pessimism. Not only was France entering the war as America’s ally, but Lord George Germain, secretary of state for America, directed Clinton to abandon Philadelphia and detach eight thousand troops elsewhere, chiefly to St. Lucia. Despite being left with thousands of fewer troops than Britain had committed to America during the previous year, Clinton was ordered to act with the “utmost vigour,” seek to retain Britain’s hold on New York and Newport, endeavor to bring George Washington to battle, and initiate “an attack . . . upon the southern colonies.”
Four years later Clinton’s premonition of disaster came true, as did his fear that he would be held responsible for Britain’s debacle. In the wake of Yorktown he was assailed in England as having been irresolute and overly cautious, and as a commander without a strategic plan….Summarizing the judgment of two generations of scholars, one wrote that Clinton was “his own worst enemy.”
Perhaps the time has come to take a fresh look at Clinton’s generalship, one not tethered to psychohistory and that above all considers the perplexities he faced.
During his initial four months in command Clinton faced multiple crises. He responded audaciously to each emergency. Read more…

British Perspective American Revolution
By Phillip S. Greenwalt
On November 23, 1765, Francis Bernard, the royal governor of Massachusetts posed this question in a letter in which the answer would result in blows ten years later between the colonies and the mother country.

“The question whether America shall or shall not be subject to the legislature of Great Britain..”

From that central question the British populace, Parliament, military, and monarchy would mull on as the decade of the 1760s turned to the 1770s and eventually as the proverbial “shots heard around the world” were fired in April 1775.
In the twelve years from the conclusion of the Seven Years War or French and Indian War as North Americans remembered it, the British Parliament, saddled with a huge war debt and the responsibility of administering the world’s largest empire at that time, levied new taxes and duties on their American brethren. Multiple ministers, five within the first ten years of King George III’s rule, plied their hand to these until finally, the king settled on Lord Frederick North in January 1770. North eventually served until 1782. The decrees from London enacted a series of measures, both peaceful and violent, between colonists and the British government. As the colonists split themselves, into pro-revolutionary and eventual independence supporters and loyalists as those who remained committed to the British crown and government were called, so too did British politicians and subjects pick sides. Read more…

JAR: “Spirits of Independence”: Ten Taverns of the Revolutionary War Era
by Damien Cregeau 29 April 2021
City Tavern in Philadelphia is a reconstruction of the famous eighteenth century tavern where countless patriots—both political and military—met throughout the American Revolution, and later, during the Constitutional Convention in 1787. It recently closed due to the impact of Covid-19 on their business. This sad ending occurred despite the fact the owner/executive chef has been a celebrity on television and has published several cookbooks.
So it got this author thinking, what taverns from the era of the American Revolution and the Founding generation remain open—either as restaurants/inns or as museums? I compiled a list, in no particular order, of ten taverns, several of which have operated as inns as well. They are spread up and down the east coast of the United States. Sadly, the ravages of time and the Civil War leave none that I am aware of in the southeastern region, North Carolina, South Carolina or Georgia. My goal was to select taverns from as wide a geographic scope as possible and break ties for recognition by favoring those taverns with significant connections to Revolutionary War or United States Constitutional history. Consideration was given to either well known figures from history who may have frequented the tavern or architectural details of interest readers may enjoy. Read more…

Riots in the Colonies. Anti-Vaxxers
There were anti-vaccination riots in the colonies before the American Revolution. Smallpox (eradicated in 1980) was the target of those 18th century vaccinations.
It’s an odd question for a Loyalist descendant to ask, but what would Thomas Jefferson or Benjamin Franklin say about the wisdom of being vaccinated?
Their answer would be: do it!
Some of the more interesting reports on Franklin, Jefferson, and vaccinations.
Anti-vaccination riots:
From President Jefferson and the First Vaccine

Shortly thereafter, in the spring of 1768 and again in 1769, in Norfolk, Virginia, anti-inoculation riots erupted. After inoculation, people had to be quarantined, and the people who lived near the physician’s house were uncomfortable with the procedure being performed so close to them. A small outbreak of smallpox had been attributed to a physician releasing patients from quarantine too early, which fueled anti-inoculation sentiments. These riots culminated in the burning down of one of the physician’s houses. None other than Thomas Jefferson was retained to bring suit on behalf of Archibald Campbell, the physician whose house was burnt down. Unfortunately for Campbell, the judge was anti-inoculation, and the physician was eventually indicted for nuisance. But by 1777, a bill was passed by a committee of which Jefferson was a member, which allowed for inoculation to happen anywhere in the Colony of Virginia, provided it was approved by the majority of the neighbors.

Three additional references

Jefferson Defended a Norfolk Doctor

Not surprisingly then, the colonial and Revolutionary War periods were times when public fear and restrictive laws often prevented the use of variolation. Nonetheless, Thomas Jefferson was a lifelong advocate of smallpox-prevention measures. In 1766, Jefferson traveled to Philadelphia to undergo variolation, since the practice was banned in his native Virginia. As a lawyer in 1768, Jefferson defended a Norfolk doctor, whose house was burned down by a mob because he practiced variolation. In 1769, Jefferson placed a bill before the Virginia General Assembly to reduce the 1769 restrictions against variolation. From Thomas Jefferson: Fighting Smallpox

Extirpating the Loathsome Smallpox

These convictions led Jefferson, while he was still practicing law, to take on a controversial legal case in Norfolk, Virginia in 1769.18 Restrictive Virginia laws, founded in fear and ignorance of the process of variolation, encouraged the public’s beliefs that inoculation was dangerous. These fears were taken to a violent extreme in 1768, when several angry citizens of Norfolk formed a mob and rioted against a local doctor who performed inoculations, burning his house down.19 Jefferson took on the duty of defending the doctor, Dr. Archibald Campbell, representing not only the victim but in effect “the side of science and modern medicine.”20 Though he lost the case, Jefferson continued to defend the right of doctors and their consenting patients to practice inoculation as he served on the Virginia General Assembly. From Extirpating the Loathsome Smallpox

Contributed by Stephen Davidson UE

Ben Franklin’s World: From Inoculation to Vaccination, Part 1
Smallpox was the most feared disease in North America and in many parts of the world before its eradication in 1980. The history of smallpox allows us to see how the disease and the world’s first immunization procedure, inoculation, made their way to North America. It also allows us to see how early Americans at first challenged and then adopted measures of smallpox control and prevention in the name of public health.
In this episode we speak with Ben Mutschler, a history professor at Oregon State University. Listen in…

Borealia: Book Review: Wounded Feelings: How to Sue for Emotional Distress
Wounded Feelings: Litigating Emotions in Quebec, 1870-1950
Review by Katie Barclay 26 April 2021 Adelaide Austrailia
Author: Eric H. Reiter, U of T Press
As I write this post, my university is running its consultation with staff about improving workplace culture about sexual harassment, my state parliament is reeling from the fall out of its own sexual harassment scandal, and the Attorney-General of Australia is defending himself against an accusation of rape. Many of us feel quite emotional about this: the women who have experienced sexual harassment and sometimes much more serious s.x-related crimes; the men who believe themselves to be falsely accused or vulnerable to such claims; the institutions who wish to protect their reputation and credibility against misbehaving staff whose actions, after all, went against policy. We might say our emotions arise from a sense of morality or expectation of justice that has been disturbed
…The book focuses on Quebec, bringing its distinct amalgamation of English and French legal systems, to this question, and has two goals. The first is to provide a narrative of legal developments in this domain over the period 1870 to 1950 and to explain why the law took the shape that it did. The second goal is to highlight the prominent emotions that were at the root of these cases — shame, dishonour, the emotions that arise from sexual harassment and gender-based violations (here described as ‘bodily intrusions’), betrayal, grief, mourning, anger and fear — and what situating them at the heart of ‘moral injury’ can tell us about law and society during this period. Read more…

Lloydtown – Once a rebel stronghold
By Brian Lockhart, New Tecumseth Times, April 29, 2021
The hamlet of Lloydtown is somewhat off the beaten path.
This picturesque and modern rural neighborhood has a very interesting past. It was once a centre for a group of insurrectionists who were planning to overthrow the oligarchic government of what was then Upper Canada.
The town was founded when its namesake, Jesse Lloyd, an American and a Quaker who was born in 1786, arrived in the region in 1832 and purchased 60 acres of land.
Lloyd’s parents were United Empire Loyalists who had arrived in Canada earlier in the century. Read more about Jesse and the 1837 Rebellion.
[I wonder. Was Jesse really the son or grandson of a UEL Loyalist? Not impossible, we have seen unusual circumstances before. A Quaker? Came to Canada early 19th century? Hmmm]


History Author Talks. OH CANADA! – Tues 4 May 2021 07:00 PM ET

Holly A. Mayer, Professor Emerita, McAnulty College and Graduate School of Liberal Arts, Duquesne University, and author of CONGRESS’S OWN: A Canadian Regiment, the Continental Army, and American Union (read more about the book) is joined by Mark R. Anderson, author of DOWN THE WARPATH TO THE CEDARS: Indians’ First Battles in the Revolution (read more about the book)
Partners in History: The Fort Plain Museum is guest hosting this session of History Author Talks. James Kirby Martin will be the guest host.
Register here.

Fort Plain Museum: After Saratoga: The War that Britain Nearly Won. Mon. 3 May @7:00PM ET

By John Ferling, Professor Emeritus of History, University of West Georgia.
It was 1778, and the recent American victory at Saratoga had netted the U.S a powerful ally in France. Many, including General George Washington, presumed France’s entrance into the war meant independence was just around the corner.
Meanwhile, having lost an entire army at Saratoga, Great Britain pivoted to a “southern strategy.” The army would henceforth seek to regain its southern colonies, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia,Deep into 1780 Britain’s new approach seemed headed for success as the U.S. economy collapsed and morale on the home front waned. By early 1781, Washington, and others, feared that France would drop out of the war if the Allies failed to score a decisive victory that year. Sir Henry Clinton, commander of Britain’s army, thought “the rebellion is near its end.” Washington, who had been so optimistic in 1778, despaired: “I have almost ceased to hope.”
Ferling provides the dramatic story of how and why Great Britain-so close to regaining several southern colonies and rendering the postwar United States a fatally weak nation ultimately failed to win the war.
Register here

Gov. Simcoe Branch: Andrew Denike: my Loyalist’s family in Europe and North America

By Nancy Conn UE Wed 5 May @7:30pm
Andrew Denike of the New Jersey Volunteers, settled in Kingston, Ontario.
The presenter will speak about his family in both Europe and North America. From a poor emigrant, his great-great-grandfather Conradt Ten Eyck became one of the wealthiest citizens of New Amsterdam. She will continue with three generations of his descendants down to her great-grandmother.
Research uncovered a myriad of facts as well as conundrums and perennial further questions.
To explore the life, times and family of Andrew Denike, UEL in a virtual meeting on Zoom, register here < >

Victoria Branch, Loyalists Cemeteries in Eastern Ontario by Stuart Lyall Manson UE Sat. 15 May 1:00PM ET

At 10:00AM (Pacific Time)
From his research, Stuart has published a first book titled “Sacred Ground: Loyalist Cemeteries of Eastern Ontario. The presentation will be about his research and findings.
The book features detailed site histories of these six cemeteries, coupled with detailed biographical profiles of selected loyalists confirmed to be buried at those locations. Stuart interweaves their personal stories with the broader historical context of the times. For example, he explores the persistence of African slavery here in our corner of Upper Canada, and its connection to local loyalists. The book is based on extensive and thorough primary and secondary source research. Stuart is an historian by profession; he co-owns an historical research company located in Ottawa. He was born and bred in the loyalist City of Cornwall, where he currently resides with his wife and daughters.
More information about the book at Global Genealogy, where it can be purchased.
Contact Frans Compeer to register, his email

From the Twittersphere and Beyond

  • 29 April 1786 – The first issue of the Weekly Chronicle is published in Halifax by William L. Minns. He reprinted mainly British and American news, but later would add more detailed local news. He published the paper for close to forty years, selling it to Joseph Howe in 1826. Brian McConnell UE
  • When he was sworn in as first President of the United States today 1789, George Washington wore a suit of plain brown broadcloth (possibly this one from his wardrobe), showing that he did not intend to be a king or tyrant:
  • This Week in History
    • 1 May 1755, a Virginia volunteer named George Washington rode into Gen. Edward Braddock’s camp in Maryland. Among the regular army officers in that force were Lt. Col. Thomas Gage and Capt. Horatio Gates.
    • Late April 1773. Joseph Warren’s 26 yo wife Elizabeth died–cause unknown. Joseph was left a 31 yo widower with 4 children under the age of 10. Elizabeth, Joseph, Richard & Mary. Their children would become orphans two years later when Joseph was killed in action at Bunker Hill.
    • 27 Apr 1773 Parliament passes Tea Act, propping up British East India Tea company at colonists’ expense.
    • April 1775. Benedict Arnold arrived in Cambridge, MA & approached Joseph Warren & the Committee of Safety w/ a plan to take Ft Ticonderoga. The MA Provincial Congress agreed. Arnold was appointed a militia colonel, issued 200 lbs of gunpowder, 200 lbs of musket balls & bayonets.
    • 25 Apr 1775 Patriots in Baltimore seize military supplies.
    • 23 Apr 1776 Congress resolves that an expedition should be undertaken against Detroit, recently taken by British.
    • 25 Apr 1776 JOHN HANCOCK writes to GEORGE WASHINGTON to convey $300,000 to the army. The money is to be used by the troops in Canada. I have my doubts about the continued efforts to #InvadeCanada. The 200,000 Dollars are Pack’d in three Boxes.
    • 28 Apr 1776 In Savannah, GA, Col. McIntosh writes that procurement is difficult due to lack of local manufacturing.
    • 29 Apr 1776 General Greene sets up defense of Long Island, crushed in Aug 1776.
    • 26 Apr 1777 Sybil Luddington rides through the Connecticut night, mustering the militia to repel a British attack.
    • 30 Apr 1780 British force takes possession of Lempriere’s Point, where rebels had abandoned cannon and guns.
    • 24 Apr 1781 Petersburg, Virginia attacked by traitor Benedict Arnold & British Gen. Philips.
  • Clothing and Related:
  • Townsends
  • Miscellaneous

Last Post Addendum. FRANCIS UE, Lynn
By Margaret Carter UE when making an appreciation award to Lynn: The Manitoba Branch wishes to recognize Lynn Francis UE with a certificate of appreciation for her participation. Our Lynn Francis UE – Dorothy Evelyn Hammet was born 98 years ago in St. Vital, Winnipeg MB where she continued to live until recently.
We have been unable to document the date when Lynn first became a member of the (then) Winnipeg Branch of the UELAC. Shortly after taking out her membership, and for several years, Jim and Lynn hosted the Branch’s picnics on their lovely property in St. Germain MB.
She was a most faithful participant in the Branch – never missing a meeting! Lynn was a Director of the Manitoba Branch until just last year! She is a great grandmother. Her Loyalist Certificate as a descendant of Loyalist Peter Etter was presented in 2002.
By Robert Campbell UE at the same appreciation event: At the time I became a member you were the branch phoner. For every single meeting I would get a call from you reminding me of the date and time. In those days I was extremely busy and Saturday was a work day and I felt I just couldn’t get there. But you persisted. The call would be made, and you would start with the words, “I don’t suppose you will be able to come but…” At some point I began to think, I just can’t let Lynn down again. I’ve got to start making it to these meetings. And I began attending. And now I’m president. Lynn you had a big part in that. When one person shows up with the regularity you have, it encourages others to do the same.

Last Post: BEDFORD-JONES, The Right Reverend Michael Hugh Harold
1942 – April 18, 2021
From COVID-19 at Lakeridge Health (Oshawa, Ontario) on Sunday, April 18, 2021. Predeceased by his parents Canon Hugh M. Bedford-Jones and Gretchen F. (née Gray) Bedford-Jones and sister Dr. Mary Bedford-Jones (William Goodwin). Beloved husband of Jeanne Yvonne (Bonnie) Bedford-Jones.
Ordained deacon in 1967 and priest in 1968, Michael served as Assistant Curate and Senior Assistant to the Dean of St. James Cathedral, Incumbent of Epiphany, Scarborough, St. Aidan, Toronto, Regional Dean, Honorary Assistant of St. Martin in-the-Fields, Canon of St. James Cathedral, and Executive Assistant to the Bishop of Toronto. Transferring to the Diocese of Ontario in 1991, Michael took up appointment as Incumbent of St. George’s Cathedral, Kingston, and Dean of Ontario and Rector of Kingston. Elected Bishop Suffragan for Toronto in 1994, he served as Area Bishop, first in York-Scarborough and later in Trent-Durham. After retiring in 2008, Michael served a number of Interim Priest-in-Charge appointments including St. Jude, Wexford and St. Peter, Cobourg.
Bishop Bedford-Jones graduated with a BA from Trinity College in 1965, and in 1968 was awarded an STB, Bachelor in Sacred Theology.
Michael was a member of the Gov. Simcoe Branch since 2002. Although not proven, he claimed descent from Canniff and Cartwright Loyalists.


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