In this issue:
- Abegweit Branch in PEI Opens Again, Memberships Welcome
- Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
- Eloped from Bed and Board, Part Two, by Stephen Davidson UE
- A Misguided Attempt to Populate Upper Canada with Loyalists after the Revolution
- The French Army in Williamsburg, Virginia, 1781–1782
- Tracing the Lives of Two DUE Asselstine (Asseltine) Sisters
- Music and Politics in the Early United States
- Seeking a Copy of An Annotated Nominal Roll of Butler’s Rangers, 1777-1784
- Query: Researching in the Teed and Peers Families
- 18th century perfumer’s trade cards
- Book: The Canadian Journal of Ziba Pope
- Book: An Explorer’s Guide to America’s Revolutionary War
- Correction: Fall 2022 Issue of the Loyalist Gazette, Richard Parry
- UELAC Loyalist Directory: New Contributions
- From the Twittersphere and Beyond
- Editor’s Note
Connect with us:
Abegweit Branch in PEI Opens Again, Memberships Welcome
The new Executive members of the UELAC Abegweit Branch of Prince Edward Island are pleased to announce that we have returned as an active branch of the United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada.
We are pleased to welcome any existing members or potential new members who would like to join our Branch.
If you or someone you know is interested in researching a PEI Loyalist, please alert them to our Abegweit Branch and we would be pleased to assist where we can.
We intend to continue our research on Prince Edward Island Loyalists and some disbanded soldiers and post their profiles on the UELAC Loyalist Directory webpage.
Read the formal announcement.
Kevin Wisener UE, President, Abegweit Branch, firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are a member of another branch, login at uelac.ca and join as an additional branch member. If you are not currently a member if UELAC, join from the homepage.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Card prepared by UELAC for Bicentennial 1783 – 1983/4 of United Empire Loyalists. On front cover is picture of landing of the United Empire Loyalists at Saint John, N.B. in May 1783 from painting by J.D. Kelly. (posted by Brian McConnell UE)
Eloped from Bed and Board, Part Two of Two
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
Although nearly half of the notices in New York City’s Rivington’s Gazette that were placed to prevent further debt being incurred by runaway wives, within their brief lines there are larger stories of couples torn apart by the tumult of the American Revolution. War took husbands away from their spouses; wives were left alone a city that at its peak had over 20,000 refugees and 10,000 servicemen.
Although only 45 notices of parting spouses appeared in Rivington’s Gazette between 1778 and 1783, they were just the tip of an iceberg of social upheaval. Many more marriages would have been shattered during the time that Loyalists sought sanctuary within New York City, but they would not have been advertised to all and sundry. Only literate men and women with the means to place a notice – and who had the resources to worry about incurring debt– would have done so. Poor and illiterate refugees would simply have gone their separate ways, not bothering to post their changed marital status in the local press. Many “divorces” seem to have been accomplished by means of departing feet rather than through legal counsel.
References to legal separations do not carry undertones of bitterness or animosity. A notice in December of 1780, read that David Willson and “his wife Honor, both of New York City, have lately separated“. Five months later, John Lander and “his wife Mary have agreed to separate.” In October of 1783, Andrew and Sarah Durand “separated by mutual consent“. An interesting notice published on December 27, 1783, indicates that Zacharias Boyse felt obliged to change his name to Peter Coggrell when the British occupied New York City. He and his wife Phebe announced that they had separated “by mutual consent“.
Other notices would rival the headlines of modern day gossip magazines. Daniel Vaughan of New York City wrote in 1780 that he had “married a certain Ann Baxter, who told him her first husband was dead; Mr. Baxter, however, is alive; she also has another husband named Giles who arrived in the last fleet from Europe; Vaughan will not pay debts contracted in future by said Ann.”
In the following year, Joseph Foster of St. James Street published the fact that he intended “to go to sea because he cannot live a contented life with his wife Margaret who is so very great a scold“. John Muirhead reported that his wife Elizabeth had gone away “with a certain J.D. who has been guilty of taking off men’s daughters as well as their wives.”
In December of 1779, Joshua Hamilton went “on official business to Savannah, Georgia, leaving his wife Elizabeth and two children well provided for; he was taken prisoner, carried to Charlestown, South Carolina, and there remained a rebel prisoner; on his final arrival in New York City on parole he found his wife had become a common prostitute to both soldiers and sailors and that on Oct. 23, 1780, she was married … to John Puff, a Hessian soldier in the Battalion of Landgrave.”
In September of 1781, John M’Gowan, a New York City carpenter declared that he would not pay debts “contracted in future by his wife, Magdalen M’Whirter, who, during his absence, polygamously married a certain William Gardner.”
1783 had its share of scandals. Stephen Smith, a sergeant in the King’s American Regiment at the head of Flushing Fly: “stated in June that his wife Mary, living in Bedford, Westchester County, has during his absence, behaved in a scandalous manner and he will not pay debts contracted by her in future.”
In July, Thomas Rawlings noted that his wife Margaret, “during her husband’s absence, had a child begotten by Benjamin Hartley of Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware“. In that same month, John Eldridge announced that he would not repay debts incurred by his wife, “who has behaved in an unbecoming manner“.
Matching the names of husbands and wives to Loyalists who migrated to Canada or the Maritimes is difficult because certain combinations of first and last names were common in the era. However, because their names appeared in both Rivington’s Gazette and later documents pertaining to settlement in the Maritimes, two Loyalist ex-husbands have been identified.
On November 7, 1781, Margaret Beveridge posted an ad to indicate that she was seeking employment. Why? Because her husband David, a hairdresser, had “deserted her” and had left “for England with a woman named Elizabeth Bryan.” (As noted in marriage records, David and Margaret (McGloan) had celebrated their wedding in New York just two years earlier.)
As it turns out, the hairdresser and his new partner settled in Saint John, New Brunswick. The couple arrived on the transport ship Ann along with a servant in July of 1783. (As no African is listed as accompanying David Beveridge on this ship, this servant was white and not a slave.) The couple had a daughter named Mary two years after arriving in Saint John. She would eventually become Mrs. John Clark of Wickham in Queens County.
It seems that the hairdresser’s neighbours did not know that he abandoned his first wife. Documents of the era record his death at age 56 in October of 1807. Elizabeth, described as his widow, died at 62 in July of 1814. Other than the fact that he was a member of Saint John’s first Masonic Lodge and was described as being “a native of Edinburgh, North Britain”, nothing further is known of David Beveridge, the Loyalist who abandoned his wife in New York.
The story of William Earnest’s marital breakdown is the opposite that of the Loyalist hairdresser. In January of 1781, his ad in Rivington’s Gazette noted that he was a “free Negro” and that he would “not pay debts contracted in the future by his wife Mary.” The reason for the couple’s dissolved marriage was not given, and Mary’s fate remains unknown.
However, William Earnest’s name appears again two years later in the Book of Negroes. It reveals that he sailed to Shelburne, Nova Scotia on board the brig Kingston in October of 1783. The ledger that contains data on both Black Loyalists and Africans enslaved by Loyalists states that Earnest was certified as a free man by both the New York police and by Charles Philips, a cooper who lived on the city’s Broad Street. Earnest was an employee of Philip’s until the Black Loyalist joined the exodus to Nova Scotia. The rest of Earnest’s life is lost to history; no documents reveal whether he remained in Shelburne or later migrated to Sierra Leone.
Marital problems did not disappear when Loyalists settled in New Brunswick. The earliest record of a notice of an elopement from “bed and board” in the colony’s newspapers is found in the October 27, 1789 edition of the Royal Gazette. Joseph Thompson’s wife Mary had “without provocation” left Sackville, New Brunswick. He gave warning that he would not pay any of her debts.
In 1792, the last known usage of “elope” to mean escape appeared in the notice posted by Andrew McGleish in the Saint John Gazette when he reported his wife Emily’s departure from their York County home.
Sadly, the more things change, the less they change. For the next 104 years, New Brunswick’s newspapers would carry the phrase “bed and board” accompanied by warnings from abandoned husbands that they would not repay any debts of their ex-wives. The last known notice was in Woodstock’s Carleton Sentinel November 14, 1896 edition, which reported that John S. Sutton’s wife Myrtle had left him.
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at email@example.com.
A Misguided Attempt to Populate Upper Canada with Loyalists after the Revolution
by Marvin L. Simner 15 Dec. 2022 Journal of the American Revolution
Following the American Revolution, and to achieve a more appropriate governing climate, the British Parliament issued the Constitutional Act of 1791 which created, out of a single province, “two separate Canadas, each having a representative government with an elected assembly of its own.” The French-speaking sector became known as Lower Canada while the English-speaking sector was called Upper Canada. What became immediately apparent with this division of the province was the highly disproportionate population in the two distinct sectors, and the potential danger this posed for the security of the province as a whole. In Lower Canada, today known as Quebec, the population had reached nearly 150,000 whereas in Upper Canada, today Ontario, the population was only around 10,000.
In anticipation of a possible American invasion of the sparsely populated region of Upper Canada it was clear that this situation needed to be rectified as quickly as possible. To address this matter, John Graves Simcoe, “a veteran leader of provincial troops during the 1775-83 war, was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada [and] was given command of a new corps of infantry to assist in its protection and undertake public works.” Read more…
The French Army in Williamsburg, Virginia, 1781–1782
by Michael Cecere 13 Dec 2022, Journal of the American Revolution
For most of 1781, the inhabitants of Williamsburg lived in a constant state of anxiety. Already economically devastated by the loss of the state capital, which was moved to Richmond in April 1780, city residents lived under threat of British attack for most of 1781. The arrival of the infamous American traitor, Benedict Arnold, at the start of the year with a small British force prompted the first alarm. He threatened to march on Williamsburg, but failed to carry through and instead, sailed on to Richmond.
A brief British occupation of Williamsburg in April was followed in late June and early July by another occupation that lasted ten days and involved thousands of British and German troops. The anxiety continued after they left, when Gen. Charles Cornwallis moved his army from Portsmouth to Yorktown, just twelve miles from Williamsburg, in August and established a fortified post there.
The situation improved considerably for Williamsburg in early September when several thousand French troops under General St. Simon arrived in the city. They were part of a French force from the Caribbean under Admiral de Grasse, and they were the first of thousands of French and American reinforcements destined for Williamsburg and ultimately Yorktown. Read more…
Tracing the Lives of Two DUE Asselstine (Asseltine) Sisters
Two daughters of John Asselstine (Asseltine), Loyalist, of Fredericksburg, Lennox and Addington County were Elizabeth and Catherine Asselstine. Catherine married Regis Lessard and Elizabeth married David Powers 8 May 1808 in Kingston by Rev John Stuart. Elizabeth did her Order in Council previously in 1808. I assume at the age of twenty one. This would make her birth year 1787.
Regis is French for Richard. There was a Richard Lessard and his wife Catherine on the 1851 census living in Thurlow Twp. By 1861, Catherine Lessard was widowed and had an Elizabeth Dean living with her. The age of Elizabeth Dean fits the age of Catherine Asseltine ‘s sister Elizabeth. My gggg grandfather Isaac Deen born 1787 was originally married to Caty, a daughter of Adam Acker and Mary Brill. This is my direct Dean line through their son Adam Acker Deen born 1811 in Sidney Twp, Hastings County, Ontario. However, by the time of Isaac’s death in 1853 , his will mentioned a wife Elizabeth. In 1862, Isaac’s land was sold off and another daughter Louisa was mentioned in the land records in the original Hastings County Land Record Books that are held at the Marilyn Adams Centre in Ameliasburg, Prince Edward County, Ontario. In the 1861 census for Thurlow Twp, was a Louisa Dean unmarried with her daughter Abigail J Dean living at a Squire family residence where Louisa was a servant. The ages of Catherine Lessard and Elizabeth Dean of Thurlow Twp fit those of John Asseltine ‘s daughters and it appears that Isaac Deen married a widowed Elizabeth Asseltine who had previously married David Powers in Kingston. Louisa was probably the daughter of Isaac Deen and his second wife Elizabeth nee Asseltine. I do not know what happened to David Powers.
Submitted by Bonny Campbell
Music and Politics in the Early United States
By Billy Coleman 12 Dec 2022 in Ben Franklin’s World
Billy is an Assistant Teaching Professor of History at the University of Missouri Honors College and at the Kinder Institute at the University of Missouri. He’s also the author of Harnessing Harmony: Music, Power, and Politics in the United States, 1788-1865. Billy joins us to investigate the role music played in early American politics.
As we continue our exploration of the musical landscapes of the early United States, Billy reveals the popularity of music in early America and the desire of early Americans to create new songs; Information about how early Americans wrote songs to circulate ideas about politics in the early republic, And a brief history of the “Star-Spangled Banner,” the National Anthem of the United States. Listen in…
Seeking a Copy of An Annotated Nominal Roll of Butler’s Rangers, 1777-1784
As a descendant of several ancestors who served in Butler’s Rangers I would like to gather whatever additional information I can. My ancestors were Christian Barkley, Eberhard Barkley and Joachim Barkley of the Butlers Rangers and my wife’s ancestor was Conrad Sills.
This book “An Annotated Nominal Roll of Butler’s Rangers, 1777-1784, With Documentary Sources, by Lieutenant Colonel William A. Smy” could well be a good additional source. See a review by Robert McBride UE (the contact information is no longer valid)
The book appears to be out of print and no longer available.
If you have a copy that you would be willing to part with, or know where I might be able to acquire a copy, please let me know.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Troy Easter UE, firstname.lastname@example.org
Query: Researching in the Teed and Peers Families
I would very much appreciate hearing from anyone who has established UEL status from any of the following:
- Tamer Hurd Peers (1805-1894),
- her parents Ezekiel Peers and Mary Alexander Peers UE and Mary Teed; and
- her grandparents Alexander Peers UE (Proven)/Mary Bolding and
- Daniel Teed (@1733-1780/Elizabeth Ayres (@1742-1786.
I descend from all of these folks, but have been having a hard time finding proof of their relationships.
Lynton “Bill” Stewart email@example.com
18th century perfumer’s trade cards
By Sarah Murden, 22 Nov. 2021 All Things Georgian
Advertising was just as important in the 18th and 19th centuries as it is today. In order to really promote your business it was essential to invest in both newspaper advertising and also to have a trade/ business card and unlike many today, 18th century trade cards were much more elaborate.
Today I thought I would take a quick look at some of the trade cards for perfumers. I do have to confess this is a rather self indulgent piece, simply because I love trade cards, and along with these are a few invoices that I have come across, so, this is very much a pictorial post. Read more…
Book: The Canadian Journal of Ziba Pope
Edited by D. G. Bell
On a couple of occasions Loyalist Trails has mentioned a forthcoming book on Loyalists and the rise of the Baptist movement in New Brunswick. That book is now available as The Canadian Journal of Ziba Pope: https://acadiadiv.ca/acbas/product/the-canadian-journal-of-ziba-pope/ Its Loyalist material deals mostly with the Magaguadavic River valley (ie, St George parish) of Charlotte County NB in the years 1812-16.
One of the book’s sidelights is discovery of the earliest imprint written by a woman in what is now Canada. Ann Phillips (Fletcher) (1787-1860), a child of New Jersey Loyalists settled in New Brunswick’s Oromocto River valley, wrote her Vision of Heaven & Hell in 1812.
D. G. Bell firstname.lastname@example.org
Book: An Explorer’s Guide to America’s Revolutionary War
By Robert M. Dunkerly, Paperback, 464 pages
Publisher: Blue and Gray Education Society (November 25, 2022)
Jam-packed with full-color images, detailed maps, and hundreds of historic sites, this is the ultimate travel guide to America’s fight for freedom and democracy. Written by acclaimed historian Robert M. Dunkerly, this indispensable handbook takes you from colonial unrest to full-grown war to the creation of a new nation. Sidebars highlight important people, significant events, and interesting facts for a deeper understanding of the war. A Taste of History’s chef Walter Staib provides insight into the culinary side with a series of features. Inside you’ll also find:
- Comprehensive information on historic houses, battlefields, churches, monuments, national historic sites, museums, historical markers, and more
- Detailed visitor information on how to visit each site
- 9 walking tours of revolutionary cities with step-by-step directions and colorful maps
- Overview maps for each state that include battles and points of interest, plus detailed battlefield maps that highlight the action
- A list of the 25 most important events to put the war into historical perspective
- A fact-filled chapter providing a Revolutionary War primer
Correction: Fall 2022 Issue of the Loyalist Gazette, Richard Parry
The Loyalist Gazette Editorial Team would like to apologize for the error on P11- UELAC People Behind the Scenes. The subtitle should read: Richard Parry UE, UELAC Central East Councillor, Kingston Branch, Assistant Genealogist and Historian.
Loyally, Loyalist Gazette Editorial Team
UELAC Loyalist Directory: New Contributions
Entries which have been added, or revised, this week, with thanks:
- John Morehouse has been added to the Loyalist Directory. Thanks to Dr. Stephan Morehouse Brayton. John Morehouse and his three brothers, Daniel, James, and Jonathan, from Reading Ridge, Connecticut, were Loyalists sequestered in New York City at the end of the Revolutionary War. Daniel settled in New Brunswick and the other three in Nova Scotia.
- Isaiah (Esayas) Bartley has new information from Gladys Boice Tolbert and from Wendy Broda. He served in the Kings Royal Regiment of New York and settled in Fredericksburgh ON. He and Eleanor Campbell married in 1760 and had several children.
- Information about two daughters of John Asselstine Loyalist, of Fredericksburg , Lennox and Addington County has been added with information from Bonny Campbell. Catherine married Regis Lessard and Elizabeth married David Powers
- Lyntin “Bill” Stewart has provided specific information about
- Joshua Loring served in the Royal Navy and resettled in Shelburne, NS and then London, UK.After enlisting in 1745 he served as Lieutenant, Captain and then Commodore through the French and Indian War (aka the 7 Years War).
- Benjamin Loring from Boston graduated from Harvard College in 1772 as a surgeon and served in His Majesty’s General Hospital. Initially resettled in Shelburne, Nova Scotia; in 1784 received a Loyalist Land Grant in Shelburne consisting of 50 acres, a town lot and a water lot. He later moved to London UK.
If you are willing to submit some information, send a note to email@example.com
All help is appreciated. …doug
From the Twittersphere and Beyond
- The Original Banner of the Nova Scotia Loyalists (Source: The Loyalist Gazette, Autumn 1974) – Brian McConnell UE
- It was an honour to receive “By Command of the Lieutenant Governor of the Province of Nova Scotia” the Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal. – Brian McConnell UE
- Happy to see work completed on new roof of historic Old Holy Trinity Church in Middleton, NS
- Comparing our modern day holiday feasts with those of the 18th century, by Kate Houck, COO of The Underground Kitchen. As I thumbed through my Colonial Williamsburg cookbook, I got to thinking about how the same meal that I had just so casually given a few minutes to creating would have been assembled by our ancestors in the early days of colonization. Read more…
- This week in History
- 16 Dec 1773 Sons of Liberty throw tea shipment into Boston Harbor to protest Tea Act. AND on the same day but in 1776, Virginia was the first of the thirteen independent American states to ratify the Articles of Confederation & Perpetual Union, forming the US of A as one country. AND Do You Know it would take steeping roughly 2-3 trillion tea bags to turn Boston Harbor into a giant cuppa (UK Consulta ein Boston)
- 10 Dec 1775 HMS Rose raids Jamestown, Rhode-Island, burn ferry house at West Ferry & many other structures.
- 14 Dec 1775 Continental Army forces occupy Norfolk, Virginia, leading to its burning to deny British use of town.
- 13 Dec 1776 Washington’s hapless subordinate Gen. Charles Lee captured in Basking Ridge, NJ.
- 15 Dec 1776 British defeat superior French naval force at battle of St. Lucia.
- 10 Dec 1777 Col. Samuel B. Webb attempts to raid Setauket, Long Island; thwarted by weather & captured by British.
- 11 Dec 1777 Cornwallis’ forces stumble across Patriots on the way to Valley Forge under Washington, force them back.
- 10 Dec 1778 John Jay elected as 6th President of the Continental Congress, later abolished slavery in NY as Gov.
- 16 Dec 1780 Militia “Overmountain Men” ward off attempted attack by British-allied Cherokee at Boyd’s Creek, TN.
- 12 Dec 1782 HMS Mediator defeats five armed American and French ships off Ferrol, Spain.
- Clothing and Related:
- Honoring Jane Austen on her birthday with a short article I wrote ‘Heels, Flats & Ankle Straps: Transitional Shoes In Jane Austen’s World.’ Image: Excellent ex. of kid slippers with high level of finish detail c. 1790-1800
- 18th Century dress, English or Round gown dressed with accessories, although constructed between 1760-1775 the fabric used for this dress is from the 1750’s.
- Rear view of a stunning 18th Century Court dress, Robe à la Française of Chinese cerulean blue silk woven with a large-scale white and platinum floral, 1750-1770
- 18th Century dress of sage-green damask satin, late 1770’s. with front closure, elbow-length curved sleeves, the silk woven with large-scale botanical motifs
- 18th Century wool coat with velvet collar & deep cuffs owned & worn by poet William Cowper, When he died in 1800 friends & fans rushed to keep mementoes of him, usually buttons & buckles. Thankfully the 16 buttons on this coat survived.
- Rear detail of men’s 18th Century Court coat, silk embroidered with delicate floral sprigs, 1770-1790
- Men’s 1785–95 waistcoat. The figures represent Dido & Aeneas from the opera by Piccini & Marmontel, produced in 1785
- 12 Hour Boiled Pudding?? – 220 Year Old Corn Meal Pudding
- GRAVEYARD GUN (c.1820) – used to prevent bodysnatchers from stealing corpses to sell to anatomists. Set at the foot of a grave, the gun would have had three tripwires around it. One such gun reportedly killed a grieving father by accident.
- In the late 17th and early 18th century coffeehouses were spread widely throughout the country [UK]. At one time, York could count some 30 such establishments including Farnhill’s on the corner of Ousegate, Harrison’s, first in Petergate and later on Nessgate corner, Iveson’s,
- Treatment for Venereal Disease St Thomas, Old Operating Theatre museum (1703 – 1715)
Editor’s Note: Best of the season
As we move into the celebrations around religious events and the dawning of a new year, I wish you a joyous time.
If you follow a faith which has days of particular meaning over the next few weeks, please do take some time to reflect on that meaning and what it means to you.
I expect to publish as usual.
Enjoy this time with family and friends.
Published by the UELAC
If you do not now receive this free newsletter directly but would like to, you can subscribe here.