In this issue:
- Scholarship Challenge 2022: Multiplying UE Scholar Opportunities
- What Makes a Loyalist a Hero?, by Stephen Davidson UE
- All Things Georgian: The Funeral of King George III
- The Significance of John Cadwalader
- Marinus Willett: The Exploits of an Unheralded War Hero
- Detecting the Villainous in Georgian London
- Washington’s Quill: Presidential Series 1 March‒15 August 1792
- List of Loyalist Certificates Updated with those issued in 2022 until August 31
- UELAC Loyalist Directory: New Contributions
- Upcoming Events
- In The News:
- Editor: Significance of 799
- From the Twittersphere and Beyond
Connect with us:
Scholarship Challenge 2022: Multiplying UE Scholar Opportunities
With the last donation arriving by slow mail, you have taken the objective of $8,088 well over the top, by almost exactly 25% to $10,096. Thank you for your help and generosity in Multiplying UE Scholar Opportunities.
Check the 2022 Scholarship Endowment Fund Challenge for final details.
Monday August 22nd was the closing date of the challenge, but as the Dominion Office was moved and there were some issues with mail being rerouted properly to the Work From Home people, we allowed extra time to cover such delays.
Do keep the UELAC scholarships in mind as donations are welcome anytime through the year, details at Donate now.
Donation can be made in honour of or in memory of someone. Several donors took advantage of that.
Over the whole year we are grateful for the donations that celebrate an important occasion. We each have a special reason for supporting causes close to our hearts.
Do you have a friend or relative doing graduate studies in history. Please share the opportunity with them. See “Scholars Wanted“.
Thank you from the full Scholarship Committee: Christine Manzer, Tim Compeau, Rebecca Brannon and Stephanie Seal-Walters
What Makes a Loyalist a Hero?
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
When you think of Loyalist heroes of the American Revolution, which name comes to mind first? Charles Stedman, a Loyalist from Philadelphia, committed his opinion to paper in his 1794 history of the revolution. He believed that Lt. Colonel John Hamilton was one “to whom, perhaps, the British nation owed more than to any other individual loyalist in the British service“,
Lord Cornwallis, the commander of the defeated British forces at Yorktown, Virginia said that John Hamilton’s “conduct as a citizen and soldier appear to me highly meritorious, and I think he deserves a mark of the gratitude of his country.”
In one of the few surviving letters that John Hamilton wrote, he certainly displayed a strong attachment to Great Britain and a certainty that it could win the war. Here is what he said following the defeat of Lord Cornwallis:
“This Country is not yet lost. It’s to be gain’d still and easier than ever, but the Ministers seem to give all over [give up] at a time when they ought most to Exert themselves and Convince their Enemies that the loss of Lord Cornwallis and 6000 men is not an object for Britain to mourn for… Notwithstanding all our Misfortunes, Great Britain can never, must never relinquish America. The last man and shilling must be expended before she gives America her independence.”
While contemporaries of Hamilton’s spoke well of him, he would not receive the notice of historians of the American Revolution until the middle of the 19th century. In 1864, Lorenzo Sabine made reference to Hamilton in his book of biographical sketches of Loyalists. He quoted James Iredell who said of Hamilton “He so deported himself to such Whigs of North Carolina, as by the fortune of war became objects of charity, as to secure the cordial regard of the best men in the ranks of his enemies“.
In addition to revealing insights into John Hamilton’s character, Sabine also provided a physical description of this Loyalist, noting that he was “a short, stout, red-faced man; well bred, and well fed,” and “of high tone and spirit.”
When a British poet visited Hamilton in 1803, he described the Loyalist as “a plain and hospitable man, and his wife full of homely, but comfortable and genuine civility.”
Historians who published during the 20th century have fleshed out the story of John Hamilton, detailing his wartime service, his time as a refugee, and his subsequent service to the crown.
Writing for the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, Carole Troxler and Arthur Menius describe Hamilton as a merchant in North Carolina and Virginia who went on to become “the commander of the largest provincial corps of North Carolina Loyalists”. Hamilton had immigrated to Virginia from Scotland in the middle of the 18th century, and formed a trading company with his brothers who had preceded him to America. Their firm prospered to the point of being able to expand into North Carolina, and eventually acquired assets worth close to £200,000.
But since their prosperity depended upon imports from Britain, the coming revolution proved to be disastrous. By 1777, the Hamilton brothers were faced with the choice of swearing allegiance to the new independent state of North Carolina or finding sanctuary elsewhere.
John Hamilton chose to leave, sailing north to British headquarters in New York City. Over the next few years, North Carolina and Virginia attainted him of treason, and confiscated his estates. When the royal army ventured south to take Georgia in the following year, Hamilton was made a captain of Loyalist refugees from North Carolina. So many more Loyalists joined the British that by the middle of 1779, they were formed into the Royal Volunteers of North Carolina under the command of Hamilton who had been made a lieutenant colonel. (The corps later became known as the Royal North Carolina Regiment.)
The historian Claire Hayman Lincoln notes that the RNCR participated in the major battles that were fought in the southern colonies: the Siege of Savannah (fall 1779), the Siege of Charleston (spring 1780), the Battle of Camden, (June 1780), Hanging Rock, (August 1780), and many others. The historian E. Alfred Jones wrote that Hamilton “had raised 1200 men during the war and had seen much fighting in the South. At the battle of Camden he fought with great spirit until put out of action by wounds.”
Hamilton and 80 of his men were among those who surrendered at the Battle of Yorktown in 1781. By this time, Hamilton had been wounded three times in fighting for the crown.
Under Hamilton’s command, the Royal North Carolina Regiment went first to Charleston, South Carolina and then — in the fall of 1782– to St. Augustine in East Florida. When this British colony was given back to Spain, disgruntled Loyalists asked Hamilton to lead an uprising, but he refused. With the Spanish take-over on the horizon, Hamilton and his men began to consider their options.
In May of 1783, Hamilton wrote a letter to British Brigadier-General Archibald McArthur to say that his men were “resolved to embark for some British settlement…either to Britain, Halifax or the West Indies“. In October of that year, Hamilton and the RNCR set sail in the Diana and the Argo for Country Harbour, located in Nova Scotia’s Guysborough County. They arrived during a snowstorm on Christmas Eve.
Hoping for a better situation than the Atlantic shore of Nova Scotia, Hamilton went to England in 1784. There, a memorial from 72 Loyalist officers was presented to Lord Sydney, the British home secretary, stating among other things that “many had gone to Nova Scotia, but were unable in their present state of finances to clear the ground and raise the necessaries of life in a climate to Southern constitutions inhospitable and severe.” The memorial asked that these Loyalists be granted land in the Bahamas and that John Hamilton be made governor of the islands “when that dignified office should become vacant“.
Hamilton spent six years in England, where he was married and became a father. He was eventually given financial compensation for his losses in North Carolina and Virginia, and made the British consul-general in Norfolk, Virginia. Hamilton was one of only three loyal Americans who were granted consular positions — one of those lucky enough to retain his loyalty to the crown and yet live in a land he had come to love.
Hamilton served the crown in Virginia until the outbreak of the War of 1812. He died four years later in England on December 12th.
Did Hamilton merit being described as the man to whom “the British nation owed more any other individual loyalist in the British service“? He lost land, property and fortune. He led other Loyalists into battle, was wounded and imprisoned. And in the years following the American Revolution, he served the crown in a diplomatic role. Upon his death both his associates and former foes recalled his kindness and integrity. Not a bad legacy. Not bad at all.
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at email@example.com.
All Things Georgian: The Funeral of King George III
King George III died on 29 January 1820 but it was to be a little over two weeks before his funeral took place on February 16, 1820, thus allowing time for everything to be put in place for such a grand event. The funeral arrangements were made with France and Beckwith, who had also organised the funeral of Queen Charlotte, just less than two years earlier.
The newspapers reporting that the event was even bigger than the one which took place to celebrate his Golden Jubilee in 1809 and for the funeral for his late wife, Queen Charlotte in 1818.
On all former occasions, lodging and horses were obtained on the day immediately preceding the occasion, but this time it was almost impossible to secure lodgings
At nine o’clock in the morning, several private friends of his late Majesty’s Household were admitted to see the body lying in state. Read more…
The Significance of John Cadwalader
by David Price 22 Sept. 2022, Journal of the American Revolution
In 1776, John Cadwalader was a thirty-four-year-old merchant and prominent member of the Philadelphia gentry who had risen to command the volunteer militia known as the Philadelphia Associators. In his capacity as a militia colonel, he would play a distinctive—and today largely unappreciated—role in what historians have termed the “Ten Crucial Days” of the Revolutionary struggle, which reversed the momentum of that contest during the winter of 1776-1777. At a moment when the rebellion appeared to be teetering on the precipice of final defeat, Cadwalader arguably made his greatest contribution to what George Washington termed the “glorious Cause” of American independence. Like his friend Washington, he was drawn to the Patriot enterprise by a perceived threat to his economic interests; and like the more senior Virginia planter, the young Philadelphia merchant enjoyed the finer things in life but was willing to risk his own in that endeavor. Read more…
Marinus Willett: The Exploits of an Unheralded War Hero
by Richard J. Werther 20 Sept. 2022 Journal of the American Revolution
Marinus Willett was born the son of a Quaker, Edward Willett, on July 31, 1740, in Jamaica, Long Island (now part of Queens). After spending his early years on a farm in Jamaica, he relocated to a place known then as Cedar Grove, along the East River and now part of New York City. This place, where his grandfather Samuel Willett, Sheriff of Queens County, died at age ninety-three, became the virtual Willet headquarters for his lifetime.
He became a wealthy merchant and property owner at a young age. During the French and Indian War, Willett, at age eighteen, was appointed a lieutenant in Oliver De Lancey’s New York Regiment, serving in numerous campaigns, among them actions on Ticonderoga (not so successful) and Frontenac (highly successful). These contrasting experiences gave him some sense of the British military and its inconsistent leadership. At this point, feeling ill from the strains of the war effort, he was done with fighting for now, returned to New York, and soon married the first of what would be three wives. Read more…
Detecting the Villainous in Georgian London
By Geri Walton 3 February 2016
Country folk visiting Georgian London and returning unscathed with their purse or their virtue intact was a rare thing. It was easy for gullible country visitors to be taken advantage of by nefarious crooks who sought to obtain a country person’s hard-earned cash or to despoil an innocent virgin and turn her into a whore. Moreover, country visitors could not readily tell whether a person was good or bad. A Londoner’s clothing was no clue as to who was good or bad because quacks dressed like physicians wearing great wigs, sharpers pretended to be gentleman in fancy waistcoats, and procuresses always dressed in the best finery.
Concern over how to recognize those in London who might wish to do a country visitor harm, resulted in a publication titled, The Countryman’s Guide to London, Or Villainy Detected. It cost a shilling and listed a number of “villainous” characters with tips about how to spot or avoid them. Among the villains that country visitors were advised to avoid in Georgian London were bawds, bullies, duffers… Read more…
Washington’s Quill: Presidential Series 1 March‒15 August 1792
An anonymous letter from 1 March 1792, penned by a concerned Citizen from Georgia, described the United States as “disgraced & unnecessarily impoverished.” Albeit brief, the phrase mirrors the foreboding mood of the following spring and summer. As the end of his first presidential term approached, George Washington navigated an increasingly precarious conflict at home with the Native American nations along the western frontier while simultaneously steering the country through a tempestuous international situation precipitated by the French Revolution. In addition to handling complex political circumstances and issuing the first presidential veto in United States history, he managed personal projects, the foremost being assistance with the creation of a family genealogy and supervising the planning of the new federal capital. Read more…
List of Loyalist Certificates Updated with those issued in 2022 until August 31
The list of UE Certificates issued since late in 2012 — showing the Loyalist ancestor, name of descendant (when permission is granted), branch and date — has been updated with the certificates issued in August 2022.
The list can be seen at Loyalist Certificates Issued
These have also been added to the appropriate Loyalist in the Loyalist Directory.
- Roslyn Beaman provided information about:
- Thomas Beaman Sr. born in 1729 in Lancaster MA served in the French and Indian (Seven Years) War, the Expulsion of the Acadians 1755 and the American Revolution (he was a guide for the British when they marched from Boston to Concord). He died during the war in Long Island. His wife and children fled to Digby NS at wars end. Two sons appear to have also served and settled in New Brunswick:
- Jim Bruce clarified some details and
- John George Cook Jr., son of John Cook Sr UEL was added to the directory. In 1790 he married Catherine Elizabeth Marcellis (b. 1 Sept 1771, d. 23 Aug 1846)
- Lynton “Bill” Stewart has provided Loyalist Land Grant data for another group, based on records at the Nova Scotia Archives, and some more detailed data for
- Theophilus Chamberlain who in 1784 received a 1000 acre Loyalist Land Grant in Preston Twp., Halifax County, Nova Scotia.
- John H. Flieger who received a 500 acre Loyalist Land Grant in the same township.
- Maj. Robert Timpany who in 1800 received a Wharf Lot Loyalist Land Grant in Digby, Annapolis County, Nova Scotia.
If you are willing to submit some information, send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org
All help is appreciated. …doug
The Accord Trio, featuring Kingston Community Strings musicians Fran Harkness on piano, Jennifer Tindale on cello, and Doug Handforth on violin/viola. The Trio’s eclectic repertoire spans from light classical music through to the featured works of Prince Edward County composer Gena Branscombe UE. They will also perform medleys from well-known musicals and some popular contemporary pieces.
Tickets at the Door: $20 (Children under 12 FREE)
Gail’s fourth great-grandfather was a United Empire Loyalist who left New Jersey at the age of fifteen, along with his older brother, to find land in what is now Thorold, Ontario. What was his journey like?
Gail will describe her research, the family, writing the book and publishing it.
The meeting is available via zoom, but we are planning in-person as well. We hope all the pieces come together in time
More details, register for online, or RSVP for in-person.
Sir William Johnson was a larger than life character who dominated the Mohawk Valley and beyond during the 18th century in warfare, politics, trade and diplomacy. This conference will address aspects of Johnson’s historical impact as well as the larger scope of the great wars for empire. This new Fort Plain Museum conference will offer a look at the colonial era when major personalities, like Sir William, dealt with overlapping cultures and the impact of war on society. At Johnstown NY
See Details and Registration.
Politics trump family ties in Port Colborne mayoral race
By Mike Drolet GlobalNews.ca 23 September 2022
A battle is brewing on the shores of Lake Erie, and oh brother, it’s a doozy.
Port Colborne Mayor Bill Steele wasn’t sure what to expect as the date neared to register for the Oct. 24 election. After 17 years on city council and one term as mayor, he thought for sure he’d have challengers.
“Nobody came forward,” he says. “So we looked at acclamation, but then we had a candidate throw his name in at the last minute. So here we are in election mode.” Read more…
- Among the approx. 3,000 Black Loyalists who came to Nova Scotia after American Revolution was Rose Fortune with her parents. In Annapolis Royal she started a baggage carting business. Visited this monument to her while on walk in town today.
- George III was crowned On 22 Sept 1761. Here is his coronation robe in red velvet and ermine, made by the robe making company which later became Ede & Ravenscroft, cGeorge III and his wife Charlotteorporate member of our society. The coronation of as king and queen of Great Britain and Ireland took place at Westminster Abbey, London, about two weeks after they were married in the Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace. Pictured in their coronation robes.
- This week in History
- 22 Sept 1774 “I wish most sincerely there was not a slave in the province. It always appeared a most iniquitous scheme to me: fight ourselves for what we are daily robbing and plundering from those who have as good a right to freedom as we have.” Abigail Adams
- 17 Sep 1775 Fort Saint Jean sur Richelieu in Quebec besieged in American attempt to liberate Canada from British.
- Sept 24, 1775, the Continental Army expelled artillery major Scarborough Gridley for cowardice at the Battle of Bunker Hill. In this picture Gridley appears in the left foreground, not getting any closer to the fighting.
- 18 Sep 1776 Washington sends news to Congress of rare victory at Battle of Harlem Heights.
- 19 Sep 1776 Col. Williamson’s patriots attacked in NC in a gorge known as the Black Hole, eventually fight clear.
- 21 Sep 1776 Great Fire of New York burns up to 1000 structures; arson by retreating Americans forces suspected.
- 22 Sep 1776 Nathan Hale caught & hung as a spy. “I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.”
- 19 Sept 1777, Continental and Crown forces clashed at Freeman’s Farm in upstate New York, what came to be seen as the first phase of the Battle of Saratoga
- 20 Sep 1777 British conduct bayonet attack at Paoli Massacre, no flints in muskets to ensure surprise.
- 17 Sep 1778 Mohawk Chief Joseph Brant leads raid on German Flatts, New-York, killing 3 & burning town.
- 21 Sep 1779 Bernardo de Gálvez, Spanish Governor of Louisiana, captures British fort at Baton Rouge, West-Florida; surrender includes all British emplacements on the Mississippi.
- 23 Sep 1779 Captain John Paul Jones audaciously captures HMS Serapis off the coast of Yorkshire, England.
- Clothing and Related:
- For the 1st #footcandyfriday for fall, early 18thc buckle shoes with autumnal hues & bright palette. Bargello or flame stitch was an imp. embroidery style later 17thc- 18th+ Assoc with accessories, its appearance provides a wonderful geometric burst of color
- love this 18th Century doll from @V_and_A, made 1740-1750 she’s dressed in a beautiful silk dress, has a muslin & lace cap and chemise and is accessorised with a pomander, leather mitts & has blue silk stockings under her dress. And even if she’s haunted I’d still love her
- It could be carved from wood, such is the sculptural symmetry of this 1770s robe à l’anglaise. The bodice fans outwards in miniature stitched seams and tight cartridge pleats then explode into a rustle of light filled silk skirt.
- Detail of the rear of an 18th Century Court dress adorned with leafy scrolls and vases, quintessential Rococo motifs, are featured with a profusion of realistically rendered flowers, 1740-1745
- 18th Century Court Mantua, c.1760, It was probably worn by Mary Holt, wife of the 7th Earl of Haddington and may have been worn at the wedding of King George III to Queen Charlotte in 1761
- I adore the patches of delicate colour interspersed with the silver on this 18th Century man’s sleeved waistcoat, England, 1740’s
- 18th Century men’s matching 3 piece suit & waistcoat, wool with metallic embroidery, c.1770-1780s
- “Tapestry,” 11. Close-up of the borders used with the tapestry wallpaper c. 1760. Also, a piece of the ceiling paper. The dark line around the edge is typical of domino-style decorative paper of the 18th century. The dark line is removed, or covered, during installation.
Published by the UELAC
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