In this issue:



Happy 110th Birthday UELAC

Ottawa – May 27, 1914
Act of Parliament (Cha. 146, 4-5) the incorporation of the Loyalist Societies into one body
“The United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada”

The one hundred and thirty years since the Treaty of Separation had seen the growth of a nation, from sea to sea, and a great scattering of the Loyalists descendants. The length and breadth of the new country made it difficult to unite the Loyalist descendants in the common cause of keeping the Loyalist history alive and telling it to their countrymen and to the world. In 1913, the various provincial societies met in Toronto to discuss their future. Col. George A.S. Ryerson strongly advised the delegates that the best solution rested in uniting local and provincial societies into a Dominion of Canada association. This advice was unanimously approved by the delegates, including, Dr. W.O. Raymond, New Brunswick; the Rev. Canon Alfred Brown, Halifax; Mr. George H. Ham, Montreal; Sir John Beverley Robinson, Edgewater, New Jersey; His Honour Hedley Clarence Taylor, Edmonton; Mr. H.S. Seaman, Winnipeg; Sir Charles Hibbert Tupper, Vancouver; Lieut. Col. George Alexander Shaw, Sir Alien Aylesworth and Lieut. Col. William Hamilton Merritt, all of Toronto.
The meeting was chaired by Col. Ryerson, and drafted a constitution, to incorporate local and provincial societies into a united body, drawing up a set of by-laws for the purpose. An Act (Chapter 146, 4-5, Geo. V, 1914), May 27, 1914, was passed by the Parliament of Canada. The Prime Minister was Robert Borden. The Act incorporated “The United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada”, authorizing its operation in all Provinces and Territories of Canada, and to be controlled under a central body, based in the City of Toronto, Province of Ontario.

A copy of the Charter can be read here.

For more information and details, see The UELAC: Its Beginnings and Evolution
The history is split into these five chapters:

  • Commemorating the Loyalists in the 19th Century
  • The Founding of the UELAC
  • Growth of the Association – Branches
  • Biographies of the Petitioners to form a Canadian UEL Association
  • Presidents of UELAC.

“The Story Continues…” at the UELAC 2024 Conference
June 6-9, 2024 at Cornwall, Ontario
The conference has three main groupings of events:

  • Pre-Conference day-tours: Tues June 4 to Thurs June 6
  • UELAC Conference: Evening Thurs June 6 through Sunday June 9
  • 240th Anniversary of New Johnstown & The Royal Townships: Fri June 7 through Sun June 9
    • UELAC has scheduled Sat daytime for conference attendees to visit and learn.

And so “The [Loyalist] Story Continues….”

Thursday 6 June, Reception
President Carl Stymiest UE will “open” the conference with welcome remarks.
Time to enjoy finger foods, reconnect with old friends and make new ones.

Saturday 8 June. Plan to spend the day at the 1784 program (see below) and then the gala banquet in the evening.

  • Gala Banquet at host hotel  – start gathering from 5:00
    • (Period Clothing/Regalia Requested)
  • Guest Speaker: Brent Whitford,
    • Senior Curator and Administrator at the Cornwall Community Museum and Archives. PhD Candidate, University at Buffalo SUNY. Prehistoric Archaeologist. Brent is from Cornwall, ON, born and raised. What he appreciates most is the direct impact on the community as regards the importance of history and heritage.
  • History v. Heritage: Blending the Past and the Present
    • History is history. What I mean to say is that history is nothing more than an amalgamation of tangible artifacts and facts that together make a coherent narrative about that which is said to have happened once upon a time. Heritage, on the other hand, is that which we choose to emphasize and remember about our history. Heritage is our history preserved. In other words, heritage is what we believe matters about the past in the present. As such, we don’t preserve history simply because it is history, but rather because it is our history and it continues to hold meaning in the present. But how do we communicate the meaning of history to new and younger audiences? How do we ensure that our history continues to hold heritage-value in the present and into the future? These and other matters will be discussed in the context of the UELAC at this year’s keynote address.

Sunday 9 June. Morning church service followed by lunch

1784 Event: 240th Anniversary by SD&G Historical Society at Lamoureux Park
240th Anniversary of New Johnstown & The Royal Townships
See the full event website

UELAC Conference: For more details and to Register now:
For more, see “The Story Continues…”

Loyalist Health Care Workers. Part One of Two
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
    The accounts of Loyalist refugees are stories of survival – escaping from the persecution of neighbours, from rebel prisons, and from the attacks of Patriot soldiers. For many Loyalists, they only lived to share their wartime experiences of the American Revolution because of the intervention of doctors, nurses, orderlies, and apothecaries who treated their wounds in military hospitals. Their survival depended upon the skills of those who had the best understanding of 18th century medicine and medical procedures.
Some of the health care workers who helped the wounded and poor in health have their names recorded in the transcripts of the Royal Commission on the Losses and Services of American Loyalists. Others are listed in the Book of Negroes. An examination of these primary sources allows us to learn more about an often-neglected aspect of Loyalist history.
From September 1776 to November 1783, New York City served as the headquarters of the British military forces. In addition to its commissary, barracks, and munitions magazines, the king’s army also had a hospital on Manhattan Island. One of the first doctors on the General Hospital’s staff was 35 year-old Dr. James Boggs of Monmouth County, New Jersey.
Joining the staff in July 1777, he described his position as being a “mate” of the hospital. Boggs’ daily rate of pay was 7shillings 6 pence, a sum that did not change when Sir Guy Carleton later made him the “assistant surgeon on the staff” in September of 1783.  (He also worked in a field hospital for a time in 1779 when he was the surgeon’s mate with the 2nd Battalion of the New Jersey Volunteers.)
Given the number of battles and skirmishes that were fought within a hundred mile radius of New York City, Boggs would have been busy treating soldiers, sailors, and Loyalists who had suffered musket wounds, stabbings, and cannon blasts. After the evacuation of New York, the Loyalist doctor continued to be part of the royal army’s medical staff in Halifax, Nova Scotia — a position he held until 1810. He died there in 1832 at the age of 91.
Peter Brown was another loyalist physician and surgeon who had practised in Newark, New Jersey where he earned as much as £400 a year. At the outbreak of the revolution, he was compelled to serve as the surgeon for a rebel militia for five days. Thanks to a British officer who could vouch for Brown’s loyalty, Sir William Howe, then commander of Britain’s forces in North America, had the Loyalist appointed to the General Hospital.  After serving in its wards until the end of the revolution, Brown settled in Windsor, Nova Scotia. There, he saw to the medical needs of the soldiers stationed at Fort Edward. He died on April, 8, 1787.
A native of Worcester, Massachusetts, Dr. William Paine had his medical training recognized when the British made him the “apothecary to the army in America“. (Similar to today’s pharmacist, an apothecary was someone who prepared and sold medicines and drugs.) Little wonder, then, that the Patriots of Massachusetts denounced him as a traitor
Paine served in a variety of locations. He was in South Carolina for a time as he “was the only person able to do Business of the Hospital in that Climate, owing to the sickness of the others.” He then served as doctor for the British garrison in Rhode Island before being posted to the General Hospital in New York. In 1781, at the age of 31, Paine was ordered to travel to Lisbon, Portugal with Lord Winchelsea as the latter’s personal physician.
A year later, Sir Guy Carleton made Paine “physician to the army” at the military hospital in Halifax. At the end of the war, the doctor received a rather desolate land grant on Passamaquoddy Bay, and so he decided to settle in Saint John, New Brunswick instead. As well as continuing in his profession, Paine became involved in colonial politics. He served in the House of Assembly as an elected member and its clerk – and later became the Deputy-Surveyor of the King’s Forests.
However, the loyalist doctor never lost his homesickness for Massachusetts. In 1787, he obtained permission from the British war office to return to the colony of his birth. Six years later, he was living in Worcester once more. He died there on April 19, 1833 at age eighty-three.
Dr. Samuel Clossy emigrated from Ireland to New York in 1763 in the hopes of working at the city’s hospital. Instead, he became the head of the Department of Anatomy at the medical school established by Kings College. His anatomy lessons required bodies he acquired by digging up bodies from either the “potter’s field” or the Negro burial ground. Later, his loyalist political views forced him to find sanctuary in New Jersey.
When the British army occupied New York in the fall of 1776, Clossy returned to work in the military hospital, serving on staff until 1780. He was paid 5 shillings per day as a “Mate to the hospital“. Clossy returned to Ireland and died there on August 22, 1786 at age 62. As pointed out by the writer Andy McPhee, “Clossy would not live to witness the anger and violence of the Doctor’s Riot of 1788, a riot prompted by the practice of body snatching.
Dr. John Watson immigrated from Scotland to New Castle, Delaware in 1767. For his first ten years of practise, he “remained quiet and unmolested“. His public “sentiments in favour of the British Government” led to his being “insulted as a Tory“. When Sir William. Howe landed his British forces in nearby Maryland, rebels forced Watson  to join a Patriot regiment as its surgeon.  “This he was obliged to do or go to Prison. He told a friend that he hated the Rebels and meant to make his escape to the British Army.”
Watson was able to escape, joining Howe on August 24, 1777. “He remained with the British all the War. … He was made mate of the Hospital with an appointment of 5 shillings per day.”  Three years later,  Sir Henry Clinton made Watson as the “apothecary to all the Hospitals in America“, giving him wages of 10 shillings a day.
At Watson’s compensation hearing in London in 1784, a British officer testified that the doctor was “a very active man and believes he was always ready to give every service in his power. He remembers his being made apothecary to the Hospital at New York and believes it was from his good behaviour.”
The British military hired Loyalist medical staff members for its other hospitals within its North American colonies during the revolution. Their stories will be recounted in next week’s Loyalist Trails.
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at

Construing Congress’s Hasty, Ill-fated 1775 Decision to Invade Canada
by Gene Procknow 21 May 2024 Journal of the American Revolution
Just sixty days after the start of armed hostilities at Lexington Green, the Continental Congress’s decision to invade Canada resulted in one of the worst defeats in the War for Independence. While exact casualty figures are difficult to discern, likely half of the American forces sent north were killed in battle, wounded, captured, or died of disease. The attacking Rebel Army retreated disease-ridden and in disarray, resulting in the Northern Army’s combat ineffectiveness. Before the invasion, the Canadians did not firmly commit to open hostilities against British rule or even send delegates to the First or Second Continental Congresses. Why did a newly formed Congress authorize an invasion of the rebellion-reticent Canada?
Historians posit several explanations for the Rebel offensive, such as the initial expression of manifest destiny, the first in a long line of American wars of liberation, or a rage militaire overcoming sagacious Congressional judgment. While these reasons place the Canadian incursion decision in an insightful historical context, they look backward using information from subsequent eras and perspectives. A forward look at the period’s events, from the outbreak of combat to Congress’s invasion order, reveals a series of misjudgments based upon faulty intelligence, overestimating threats, a lack of strategic military foresight, and insufficient Congressional control over the military. Read more…

Two Soldiers, a Cask of Wine, and Thou(sand Lashes)
by Don N. Hagist 23 May 2024 in Journal of the American Revolution
When Bryan McSweeny stepped ashore on Staten Island in August 1776, it must have looked like a paradise. He had spent the previous three years in Jamaica, in a tropical climate that was often fatal to Europeans; now, he saw a verdant landscape and felt temperatures similar to his native town of Macroom in County Cork, Ireland. But unlike peaceful Jamaica, which had avoided the violence of the recent Carib War, Staten Island was the staging point for a new British military offensive in the rebellious American colonies.
McSweeny was a private soldier in the 50th Regiment of Foot. He had volunteered for the army in 1768—during peacetime and for most of the American Revolution the British Army was an all-volunteer force—and now had eight years of soldiering under his belt including his three years in Jamaica. The regiment was ordered from that island to join the massive military buildup on Staten Island. But the disease-prone Caribbean climate had taken its toll, and the 50th was now under strength with many men unfit for service. There were other regiments on Staten Island that had been in North America for several years and also needed more men. Rather than add a newly-arrived regiment that was not fit for service into the order of battle, the army’s commander, Gen. William Howe, directed that the regiment be drafted.
Drafting, during this era, meant transferring soldiers from one regiment to another. Read more…

Hessian Soldiers Travelling to America: New York A Soldier’s Life March 1780
From a Hessian Diary of the American Revolution.
This excerpt from the diary of Johan Conrad Dohla (170 pages).

Major Moves during Johan’s deployment:

  • March 1777:   Depart Germany
  • 3 June 1777:   Arrive New York, then Amboy NJ
  • November 1777:  To Philadelphia
  • June 1778: to Long Island
  • July 1778: To Newport RI
  • October 1779: to New York

March 1780: At New York (page 78)
Continuation of Occurences in North America During the Fourth Year, 1780 (page 78)
March 1780
14 March. Our company drilled for the first time.
15 March. Today Second Lieutenant von Ciriacy, of the Colonel’s Company, transferred to Quesnoy’s  Company,  and  Second  Lieutenant  [Johann  Gottlieb]  Hirsch,  of  Quesnoy’s Company, came in exchange to Colonel Seybothen’s Company.
17 March. I sent two letters to Germany.
19 March. I participated in church parade in the city.
20 March. I went on watch at the East Wharf.
22 March. During the evening, after tattoo, I went with a strong command. It was drawn from all the regiments which lay here in New York and consisted of four hundred men under the command of  the  Scottish  Major  Kleevlington  and  Captain  Tannenburg  of  the  Hessians. We were carried  in  boats across the North River to the province of New Jersey. Then we marched  almost  the  entire  night,  at  the  quickest  pace  and  as  silently  as  possible,  mostly through  forests.  Toward  three  o’clock  in  the  morning  we  reached  Hackensack,  a  large  and beautiful settlement consisting of about two hundred houses. This village was attacked and all houses  were  immediately  broken  into  and  everything  ruined;  doors,  windows,  boxes,  and chests, everything lumped together and plundered. All the males were taken prisoners, and the townhall  and  some  other  splendid  buildings  were  set  on  fire.  We  took  considerable  booty, money, silver pocket watches, silver plate and spoons, as well as furniture, good clothing, fine English  linen, good silk  stockings,  gloves,  and  neckcloths,  as  well  as  other  expensive  silks, satins, and other  materials. This village  of Hackensack  lies  sixteen  English  miles  from New York and has rich inhabitants.
23 March. At daybreak we again marched out of Hackensack. We wished to proceed two miles further to Pollingtown, a small city where we hoped to capture a rebel command of two hundred  men. However, because we were  betrayed  by  spies  and  the  rebels  came  against us from all sides, we had to begin the return march. They would have taken all of us prisoners, because they were five or six times stronger than we were, if Colonel [Andreas] Emmerich of the  English  had  not  joined  us  with  four  hundred  light  infantry  and  jaegers.  On  the  previous day they  had  been transferred across the  North  River beyond Kingsbridge  and  were  to have supported us during the attack on Pollingtown. [Colonel Emmerich] covered our flank as soon as he had joined us, and we slowly pulled back under a steady fire, which last more than six hours.  During  this  time  we  threw  away  or  discarded  most  of  our  furniture  booty.  At  eight o’clock in the evening we again arrived at New York, after the enemy had followed us to the water of the North River. From this expedition we had dead three Scots, eleven English and Hessians; and Private B‡r, of our regiment, made prisoner.
On this day my life was exposed to many hundreds of bullets. My booty, which I had been fortunate enough to  retain,  consisted of two silver  pocket  watches,  three  silver  buckles,  one pair of women’s white cotton stockings, one pair of men’s summer stockings, two men’s and four women’s shirts of fine English linen, two fine tablecloths, one silver food and tea spoon, five Spanish dollars and six York shillings in money, eleven complete mattress covers of fine linen, and  more than two dozen  pieces  of  silk  fabric,  as  well  as  six  silver  plates  and  one silver  drinking  cup,  all  tied  together  in  a  pack  which,  because  of  the  hasty  march,  I  had  to throw away.
25 March. Private [Konrad] Hassfurther, of Quesnoy’s Company, had to run a gauntlet of two hundred men eight times because of a quarrel with a Hessian officer.
28 March. I went on the naval-stores watch. This was an  English warehouse where there were many barrels of rum, salted meat, and other victuals.
(to be continued)

Advertised on 24 May 1774: “A Negro runaway….or English punishment?”

Who was the subject of an advertisement in a colonial American newspaper 250 years ago today?

“RUN away … a negro man about 27 years of age.”

An advertisement in the May 24, 1774, edition of the Connecticut Courant offered a reward for the capture and return of an unnamed “negro man about 27 years of age” who liberated himself by running away from Thomas Moses, his enslaver.  Moses provided a description, declaring that the “negro man … lisps in his speech” and wore “a brown coat and red waistcoat, a white holland shirt, a new castor hat, a new pair of leather breeches, [and] a pair of blue stockings.”  He also took other clothing with him, items that he could use to vary his appearance or sell in his efforts to make good on his escape.  Moses stated that he would present ten dollars to “Whoever shall take up said negro and return him to me” or five dollars to whoever would “secure him in any of his majesty’s goals [jails] and send me word so that I may have him again.”  In a nota bene, he warned, “All persons are hereby forbid to harbour said negro on penalty of law.”
The first half of that advertisement appeared at the bottom of a column that featured an editorial with a headline that proclaimed, “JOIN OR DIE!!!”  A more extensive version first ran in the May 16 edition of the Newport Mercury as a combination of news and opinion.  An abbreviated version, the first paragraph, then circulated in other newspapers as printers followed the common practice of reprinting items from one publication to another.  The shorter version featured an additional exclamation mark for emphasis.  The editorial commented on the Boston Port Act and Parliament’s intention “to reduce its spirited inhabitants to the most servile and mean compliance ever attempted to be imposed on a free people.”  This new legislation was “infinitely more alarming and dangerous to our common liberties, than even that hydra the Stamp Act.”  While directed at Boston in retaliation for the destruction of tea the previous December, the Boston Port Act, according to the anonymous author, was also “a direct hostile invasion of every province on the continent.”  The people of Boston “nobly stood as a barrier against slavery.”  Now residents of other towns needed to do the same “to stand … for the relief, support, and animation of our brethren in the insulted, besieged capital of Massachusetts-Bay” because “nothing but unity, resolution, and perseverance, can save ourselves and posterity from what is worse than death — SLAVERY.”
Connecticut Courant (May 24, 1774).
Twice in a single paragraph, the author of the editorial invoked slavery as the consequence of Parliament’s treatment of the colonies. Read more…

Petition by Blacks for Freedom to Gov. Gage and MA Legislature
May 25, 1774, Gov. Thomas Gage convened a new Massachusetts legislature. Several people of African descent submitted a petition seeking their natural freedom for themselves and their children at the age of twenty.
The Petition of a Grate [Great] Number of Blackes of this Province who by divine permission are held in a state of Slavery within the bowels of a free and Christian Country Humbly Shewing
That your Petitioners apprehend we have in common With all other men a naturel [natural] right to our freedoms without Being depriv’d of them by our fellow men as we are a freeborn Pepel [People] and have never forfeited this Blessing by aney [any] compact or agreement whatever.  Read more…  (See transcription)

Book Review: Antiquity and Loyalist Dissent in Revolutionary America, 1765–1776
Author: Daniel R. Moy (Anthem Press, 2024. $110.00)
Review by Kelsey DeFord 20 May 2024 Journal of the American Revolution
Daniel R. Moy’s Antiquity and Loyalist Dissent in Revolutionary America attempts to analyze ideological warfare between Whigs and Tories, with particular attention to ancient Greco-Roman and Mediterranean influences. Moy, currently a lecturer at the University of Virginia Frank Batten School, published this version of his thesis for the doctorate degree he received in 2012. British colonists were fascinated with the rise and fall of the Greco-Roman empires of Sparta, Athens, and Rome. Curriculum at universities was responsible for this; most taught classical humanism and Latin, important components for being a “gentleman” in society. Some English colonists believed the British Empire reflected the legacy and ideologies of great republics. By the 1760s there was a divide, with early resistance challenging legitimacy of the monarchy. Yet, Moy argues that Whigs and Tories alike used classics to support both resistance and reconciliation.
Tories used antiquities and literature such as Cicero and the Catiline conspiracy, and Moy shows that this is further illustrated in J. Hector St. John De Crèvecoeur’s American Belisarius. Tories used antiquities to question Whigs’ civic virtue, as this was the foundation upon which Rome was built. To Tories, Whigs represented an unchecked and corrupt mob which previously led to Rome’s fall. Read more…

A Modest Proposal: Stop using “puritan”
by Carla Gardina Pestana, May 2024 in Common Place
More importantly, our misappropriation of “puritan” has allowed scholars to ignore and the public to misunderstand religion.
Let’s stop using the term “puritan.” The migrants to English America, to whom the label has become attached, did not embrace the term, making it historically inaccurate. More importantly, our misappropriation of “puritan” has allowed scholars to ignore and the public to misunderstand religion. The price we pay in the present is a stunted and politicized understanding of the past. Instead, I propose we choose more accurate terms, accepting that “puritan” is almost never what we intend.
The term “puritan” emerged during the sixteenth century in debates over the nature of the Church of England. Supporters of the church’s modest reformation derided opponents who wanted a more vigorously reformed church as “puritan.” These critics sought to impose Calvinist style discipline on their communities. As a result, the label entered popular use as a taunt against those seen as rigid and judgmental. Unsurprisingly, the subjects of the term “puritan” never embraced the epithet.
This period in English history when godly reformers worked within the established church in hopes of its reformation lasted until the 1630s, when Archbishop William Laud’s persecutions dashed these hopes. Read more…

Oddities and Absurdities
By Sarah Murden 20 May 2024, All Things Georgian
Today I thought I would share with you a short letter, or perhaps an arguably pedantic rant entitled Oddities and Absurdities, by a JM Lacey, which appeared in Ackermann’s Repository of February 1823. I do have to say that I do agree with many of his rather amusing observations and let’s be honest, there are plenty which are used today which make little sense, so here we go:
A lady says to her husband, whom she thinks not such good company as he might be, “Come, leave off reading, my dear”. How can the man come? He is there already.
and several more…

In the News:

Historical Society to take care of local history: UEL cemetery first project
By staff, 22 May 2024 Burlington [ON] Gazette
The Burlington Historical Society has taken on a new project and put their money where their mouth is: they pledged $5000 toward restoration and clean-up of our Pioneer Cemeteries.  Though the Neighbourhood Campaign, the City of Burlington has matched that amount and added more to our project.
They have chosen the United Empire Loyalist cemetery on Plains Road (in front of IKEA), AKA Job’s Lane Cemetery & The Brick Cemetery. Read more and video…

Also a second article “Funds to help Burlington Historical Society clean up Loyalist cemeteries” at Burlington Today. Read more…

Events Upcoming

Gov. Simcoe Branch: “The Northern Brigaden” by Gavin Watt 29 May 7:30

 “The Northern Brigade Later in the Revolution” The Northern Brigade would be supported by a few British Regular regiments and the 84th’s first battalion. The brigade included these loyalist regiments – Royal Yorkers, Butler’s Rangers, Jessup’s Loyal Rangers and Roger’s 2nd Bn, King’s Rangers.
Sir John Johnson was the brigadier general of those loyalists as well as the Superintendent General of Northern Indians with the Six Nations’ and Seven Nations of Canada’s departments and their large numbers of rangers. Johnson had a very heavy responsibility.
Gavin Watt will likely never retire form his avocation, military history. To those of us with Loyalist interests, his presence has been keenly appreciated. Gavin is the founder, and was Officer Commanding, of the recreated King’s Royal Yorkers from 1975-2006, and until 2017 continued his valued involvement. Gavin has researched extensively the military actions and people of the American Revolution, and authored or co-authored several books. More details and registration, in-person or on zoom.

American Revolution Institute: John Trumbull, Painter of the American Revolution 4 June 2024 @6:30

John Trumbull experienced the American Revolution firsthand by serving as an aid to American generals George Washington and Horatio Gates and being jailed as a spy. Throughout his wartime experience, he made it his mission to record the conflict, giving visual form to the great and unprecedented political experiment for the citizens of the newly formed United States. Although Trumbull’s contemporaries viewed him as a painter, Trumbull thought of himself as a historian. Details and registration…

Ontario Ancestry Conference June 14-16 – Special rate for Heritage friends

    Here’s a wonderful opportunity we’d like to bring to the attention of our members.
See the attachment for a special member’s rate to attend the conference – save $40 – until registration closes on 1 June.
Don’t forget to quote coupon code 2024conffnf

The Revolutionary War Conference 250 in the Mohawk Valley – June 14-16, 2024

Johnstown, NY
Bus Tour – “1774: The Rising Tide”  Friday 14 June. (sold out; get on waiting list)
In 1774, the politics of the Revolution had arrived in the Mohawk Valley with a vengeance. At the eastern end of the Mohawk another violent Liberty Pole riot was having a detrimental effect on the local citizens of Schenectady. Meanwhile further west along the Mohawk River, in Johnstown, events took a turn when Sir William Johnson passed away in July, thus starting a new chapter in political unrest.
Speakers include:

  • Kristofer RayThe Cherokees, the Six Nations and Indian Diplomacy circa 1763-1776
  • David MoyerRecent Archaeology Discoveries on the Site of Revolutionary War Fort Plain

The Bus Tour (sold out, add to the waiting list) will include several stops in both Schenectady and Johnstown, such as the Schenectady Stockade, Johnson Hall and more. Details and Registration.

Loyalist Day in Ontario, Branches (more details in June)

  • Saturday 15 June. Col. John Butler Br. Niagara-on-the-Lake, at cenotaph
  • Monday 18 June. Toronto and Gov Simcoe Br. Queen’s Park. 12:00
  • Saturday June 22. Grand River Br. 11:00 at Vittoria. Lunch (fee) and program Flyer

From the Social Media and Beyond

  • I am really looking forward to this presentation as I will discuss a fascinating history that I enjoyed researching. Mark the date now and plan to attend Macdonald Museum in Middleton if you can. Brian McConnell UE
  • Explored Fortress Louisbourg on Thursday, originally founded in 1713 & reconstruction largest of its kind in North America. Brian McConnell UE
  • Townsends
  • This week in History
    • 18 May 1756: #Britain declares war on France, beginning the Seven Years’ War. It was one of the first world wars. It included every major power in #Europe and was also fought on five continents. image
    • 16 May 1770: Marie Antoinette, age 14, marries the future King Louis XVI, age 15, of France. She was the last queen of #France before the French Revolution. She was executed during the revolution on October 16, 1793 at the age of 37. image
    • 19 May 1774, the Farmington, Connecticut, expressed its contempt for the Boston Port Bill by raising a 45′ Liberty Pole, burning the law, and voting unanimously that the government in London was “instigated by the devil”: Read more…
    • 20 May 1774 London. King George III signed the Massachusetts Government Act (& annuls), the colony’s charter, & signed the Administration of Justice Act, tightening political & legal control. All power reverts to Royal Gov. image
    • 20 May 1774, Parliament passed the Massachusetts Government Act, changing the colony’s constitution to make the governor’s council appointed instead of elected, limit town meetings, and alter how juries were chosen image
    • 24 May 1774, Williamsburg, Virginia
      The members of the Virginia House of Burgesses learned of the Order by Parliament to close the port of Boston on June 1st. They resolved: “That a day be set apart by this House as a day of humiliation and prayer, devoutly to on divine intervention for the heavy calamity that threatens their civil rights.” A resolution was also proposed by Mr. Richard Henry Lee for a General Congress of the Colonies to convene. These two resolutions so angered Royal Governor Dunmore that rumors spread quickly that he was considering disbanding the House of Burgesses. image
    • 24 MAY 1774, MARBLEHEAD, MASSACHUSETTS BAY: Elbridge Gerry reports to the Boston committee that the town meeting has agreed to boycott trade as Boston asked, but with a modification: they will boycott trade with Great Britain, but not the West Indies.
    • 18 May 1775 New Bern, NC. Royal Gov Josiah Martin notifies London that he cannot prevent the populace from joining the militia or forming a new government. image
    • 21 May 1775 Boston, MA. British garrison sends 4 boats to Grape Island for supplies. Patriots respond with musket fire, but the British escape with supplies. Local militia burns remaining supplies on the isle to deprive the British garrison of sustenance. image
    • 22 May 1775 1st New Hampshire Regiment was formed. Col John Stark was the first commander. The unit fought at Chelsea Creek and Bunker Hill in 1775. On 1 January 1776, while engaged in the Siege of Boston, the unit was renamed the 5th Continental Regiment. image
    • 22 May 1775, Henry Laurens excitedly writes about South Carolina’s “amazing readiness to contribute to the common cause” after the battles of Lexington and Concord. image
    • 24 May 1775 Peyton Randolph of Virginia resigned as President of the 2nd Continental Congress. John Hancock was elected to the position of President. image
    • 25 May 1775 Boston, NY. British reinforcements arrive along with Gen John Burgoyne, Henry Clinton, and William Howe.  Gen Thomas Gage now has 6,500 crack regulars & a “dream team” of lieutenants. It also signals Parliament’s lack of confidence in him.  image
    • 18 May 1776 Delaware Capes. Capt Nicholas Biddle sails away on the 14-gun USS Andrew Doria. The doughty ship would take 10 prize ships over the next 4 months.  image
    • 19 May 1776 Cedars, Quebec. American Maj Isaac Butterfield’s militia is attacked by Capt George Forster’s company (50 men) of the 8th Regiment & 200 Indians. After a stiff defense, Butterfield surrenders on promises the Indians will not massacre them. image
    • 20 May 1776 The Cedars, Quebec. British Capt George Forster’s detachment of soldiers & Indians ambushes a 100-man relief force under Maj Henry Sherburne, who surrenders after suffering 28 killed & several wounded. image
    • 22 May 1776 New York City. Continental Army HQ General Orders name the ten batteries & redoubts protecting lower Manhattan with names like Grand Battery, Fort George, Whitehall Battery, Oyster Battery, Grenadier Battery, Jersey-Battery, Bayard’s Hill Redoubt, Spencer’s Redoubt, Waterbury’s Battery & Badlam’s Redoubt. They were begun by General Charles Lee in February of that year.  At this point, most of the cannons used in the forts were old British guns, but there were never enough to cover the numerous points of invasion open to a British Army with naval superiority. image
    • 24 May 1776, George Washington arrives in Philadelphia to confer with the Continental Congress over the course of events. Two new committees are subsequently appointed, one to oversee the campaign & another to recruit native Americans for the war effort. image
    • 20 May 1777 Logan’s Fort, KY. 1777 Kentuckians at Benjamin Logan’s Fort fend off an attack by Indian braves & British regulars. An important victory for nearby Ft. Boonesboro & Fort Harrod & helped secure Kentucky as a part of the United States. image
    • 21 May 1777 – Lt. Col. Return Jonathan Meigs leads 240 men in a raid against Sag Harbor on Long Island. Due to a storm, they are forced back to Guilford, CT. and have to wait 2 days for the storm to pass. image
    • 23 May 1777 Lt Col Meigs restarts the raid with 170 men. They row across Long Island Sound, arriving in Sag Harbor, NY, in a successful daring night raid. Using only bayonets, they take 90 British soldiers & kill l6. 12 British supply ships are torched.  image
    • 18 May 1778 Philadelphia, PA Maj John Andre throws the Meschianza, a medley of lavish celebrations including feasts, balls, shows, and fireworks to farewell departing British commander in chief Lord William Howe. image
    • 19 May 1778 Barren Hill, PA. Gen William Howe’s forces stealthily surround Marquis de Lafayette’s division with 11K men, but Lafayette’s Oneida scouts under Capt Allen McLane provide a last-minute warning as dawn breaks. image
    • 20 May 1778 Barren Hill, PA.  By skillful maneuvering, Marquis de Lafayette’s forces slip out of British Gen Howe’s trap and avoid Gen Grant’s forces. He gets his 2.5K Continentals across the Schuylkill R. & Grant returns to Philadelphia. image
    • 24 May 1778 Newport, RI. British Lt Col John Campbell leads 22nd Regt to nearby towns of Warren & Bristol, which they burn before withdrawing. Col William Barton’s militia pelt them with musket fire on their return match. image
    • 19 May 1779 Martinique, West Indies. Fleets of Adm George Rodney & comte de Guichen spar in St Lucia Channel – an indecisive engagement. The British lost the SOL, HMS Cornwallis, with 47 killed & 113 wounded. French lost 45 killed & 95 wounded. image
    • 23 May 1779 West Point, NY. American traitor Gen Benedict Arnold establishes his bona fides with his new masters by sending British commander-in-chief Sir Henry Clinton detailed information regarding the defenses at West Point & surrounding camps.  image
    • 19 May 1780 Skies darken over the northeast—known as New England’s Dark Day. How dark? A candle was needed to see outside at noon! It began around 9am when smoke crossed the western skies and merged with clouds from the ocean.
      The mix of smoke and clouds resulted in total darkness by 1030 am. Rivers and streams smelled of soot. Boston smelled like a coal-kin. Panic ensued in many communities, sent children home from school, left work, and went to church to pray. It stretched from Portland, Maine, to New Jersey.
      In New Jersey, General George Washington included it in his diary: “Heavy & uncommon kind of Clouds–dark & at the same time a bright and reddish kind of light intermixed with them–brightning & darkning alternately,” Washington wrote. “This continued till afternoon when the sun began to appear. The Wind in the Morning was Easterly. After that it got to the Westward.”
      What was it? Not climate change.
      Many thought it was judgment day or a rebuke for mankind’s sins. Some thought it was an eclipse, but later studies pointed to massive fires in western Canada. The resultant smoke pushed east by the prevailing winds mixed with clouds did the trick.  image
    • 21 May 1780 Johnstown, NY. Chief Joseph Brant& Sir John Johnston led a force of 600 Loyalists & Iroquois in a raid on patriot settlements, killing scores of settlers & taking 40 captives.  image
    • 22 May 1780 Caughnawaga, NY. Sir John Johnson dispatches ½ his forces, some 300 Loyalists & Iroquois, to attack and burn the village. image
    • 23 May 1780 Johnstown, NY Loyalist and Iroquois marauders finish their depredations in the Mohawk Valley by raiding & burning Johnstown & then retiring with impunity. image
    • 21 May 1781 Fort Galphin, SC. Col Henry Lee captures 2 Loyalist companies (126 men) & supplies at this key supply depot. This advances his campaign to capture Augusta, GA. image
    • 22 May 1802 Martha Washington, beloved wife of General & President George Washington, dies at Mt. Vernon “the worthy partner of the worthiest of men.” She only lived three years after her husband’s death. image
    • 20 May 1834, the Marquis de Lafayette passed away. The #RevWar hero recruited French troops, chased Benedict Arnold, fought at Yorktown—& in his own words—came to the #USA because “the moment I knew she was fighting for freedom I burnt with a desire of bleeding for her” image
  • Clothing and Related:
    • This stop-dead-in-your-steps dress retains its silk shine & shimmer after over 250 yrs! Robe à la Française, 1740-60, silk satin w/silk & metallic-thread Today we rarely think of creating clothing meant to last a decade, let alone centuries.
    • Riding Habit Jacket, 1760-70.  Unusual because it is made in fustian (cotton weft/linen warp) twill, not wool.Perfect for a UK summer.
    • Several years ago, while researching at Bowen Textile Collection at Uof New Hampshire library with consulting curator Astrida Schaeffer  I viewed an elegant cream silk damask dress, mid-18thc+ This is the real deal, boxed, w/o conservation or preparation – yet breathtaking in its beauty
    • An open robe from the 2nd half of the 18th century. The silk is c.1760s, but the gown was remodelled c. late 1770s to early 1780s. Carnations are seen in the pattern – a flower currently blooming in the UK.
    • Small bed cover of silk patchwork, Kent, the silks made c. 1680-1700, and made up c. 1700-1720
      This patchworked bed cover was made by Priscilla Redding. She was born in Deal Castle, where her father was governor. There are few surviving early accounts about quilt makers, but hers is one of them. In her diary she wrote about her life and recorded family births and deaths.
  • Miscellaneous
    • Many parts of Jamestown Settlement’s re-created Susan Constant, Godspeed and Discovery share names with animals or parts of animals. As you look at the images you can also read Henry Mainwaring’s descriptions of the various parts of the ship, from “The Seaman’s Dictionary.”
    • A beautiful Teabowl and saucer from the  Meissen factory, 1725-30, hard-paste porcelain, perhaps by Johann Gregorius Höroldt
    • Circa 1790 musical tall case clock made and owned by Daniel Burnap (1759-1838) of East Windsor, Connecticut, can play six different tunes, still in working order! On view at @TheWadsworth
    • Mudlark:  Can you see the weave of 400 year old cloth pressed into the back of this lead cloth seal? Seals like this were attached to bolts of woollen cloth to prove it was of quality and the relevant taxes had been paid. They often have the initials or symbols of the alagner or cloth merchant on one side, but if you turn them over, they sometimes also also have, the impression of the warp and weft of the cloth itself.

Last Post: WEIRMEIR, Arnold Vernon, 19 April, 1930 – 19 May, 2024
It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of our beloved father Arnold V. Weirmeir.
Predeceased by his wife Ruby of 56 years. Survived by their two children, Clifford (Sandra) and Julie Anne Weirmeir (Trevor). Grandfather to Clifford Jr. (Jessica), Kayla (Cody) and Sarah (Cory). Great-grandfather to Maya, Logan and Ruby.
He was a dedicated father and hard working man. Arnold joined the R.C.A.F. in 1950 as Airman. He rose through the ranks and retired as a Major in 1982. He took a civil service position for 14 years for a total of 46 years of service with DND. He was a Tactical Director (CF-18) of aircraft operational support and equipment (1982-1996). Arnold also completed university for his Bachelor of Engineering Science and Masters of Engineering. Proud member of United Empire Loyalist (UEL).
A Celebration of Arnold’s Life will be held at a later date. Details at Dignity Memorial.
Ruby and Arnold were members of Kawartha Branch.  Arnold was a great friend, colleague, and fellow-Loyalist descendant.
By proving his descent, Arnold received Loyalist Certificates from Frederick Keller UEL and Cyrenius Parks UEL.
Bob McBride UE

Memorial Service for Jim McKenzie UE
For reference, see Last Post: McKenzie UE, Jim

To friends in the United Empire Loyalist Association,
A note about the time of Dad’s service, along with details.
Saturday, June 1st at 2:00 p.m. at Hampton United Church, 24 Robb Court, Hampton, NB
We will have a piper participating in the service and hope to see lots of kilts!
Dad was absolutely devoted to all things Scottish and was so very proud of his heritage as the descendant of a Loyalist.
There will be a lunch of sweets and sandwiches, tea and coffee following the service.
We hope that many of you will be able to attend. Thank you for sharing this information with your members.
Diane Cosman, Jim’s daughter

Published by the UELAC
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