In this issue:


“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 Two of Two
copyright Stephen Davidson UE
    Wherever the British military had a presence in the colonies during the American Revolution, there were hospitals to tend to the sick and wounded. Among the medical staff members were Loyalists who served as doctors, surgeons, nurses, and orderlies.  As seen in the first part of this series, loyalist doctors treated battle casualties in New York City, Newport, Rhode Island, and Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Montreal and Quebec City also had military hospitals. Alexander Grant, a Loyalist from Scotland who settled in New York’s Johnson Bush, had served in Sir John Johnson’s Regiment. Wounded in some unnamed battle, the Loyalist died “at Montreal in King’s Hospital” in 1777. His claim for compensation of wartime losses is one of only two that makes reference to a hospital.
Kenneth Fraser, a Loyalist from New York’s Albany County, also submitted a claim for compensation. He mentioned that he had broken his arm in 1783, and had recovered in “the hospital at Quebec“.
Sometimes a military hospital was situated in the home of a civilian. The rebel assembly of Rhode Island declared a Loyalist named Captain J. Bunton a traitor in 1775. It confiscated his property, compelling him to “serve most of the war on board of His Majesty’s Ship“. However, Bunton’s wife was able to retain their home.
During the British occupation of Rhode Island between 1776 and 1779, the Royal Navy used the Bunton house and farm as a hospital. This was not unusual during the war. A number of loyalist compensation claims reveal the fact that the Patriot army also used the confiscated homes of Loyalists as their military hospital buildings.
At least one other Loyalist doctor had connections to Rhode Island. Dr. John Haliburton was a surgeon in the British navy. He settled in Halifax where he “resumed practice and acquired a high professional reputation; held public offices, and was a member of the Council.” He died at Halifax in 1808, aged sixty-nine.
Until 1772, Dr. Nathaniel Bullein served the people of Charleston, South Carolina as their physician and apothecary. When he sensed troubled times ahead, Bullein moved his family 367 km away to Amelia Township. Nevertheless, he was forced to join the staff of the local rebel hospital. When the loyalist doctor finally left Amelia, patriots seized his remaining possessions.
After the British army captured Charleston in 1779, Dr. Bullein served his king as a surgeon in the city’s Loyal Refugee Hospital. Following the evacuation of Charleston’s loyalists and British soldiers, the Bullein family sailed for Nova Scotia in August 1783. The loyalist doctor eventually settled near present day Wolfville, but he was far from being impoverished. Bullein came to Nova Scotia with eleven (!) African slaves, ranging in age from six months to sixty years.
Given the acceptance of slavery in colonial America, it must have been strange for some Loyalists to find themselves working alongside free Blacks at New York’s military hospital. The Book of Negroes lists five Black Loyalists as former employees of the General Hospital Department. All five were passengers aboard the evacuation ship Danger –one of the very last vessels to leave New York on November 30, 1783. Essential to the British army right up until the end of its occupation, these hospital staff members were bound for Port Mouton on Nova Scotia’s Atlantic coast.
A 35 year-old woman known only as Amelia was one of the free Black servants at the New York’s military hospital. Working alongside her was Phillis Clarke, who had escaped slavery in South Carolina in 1775 when she was 22. Joseph Dickson, who had run away from his master in Georgia in 1778 when he was 45, also served in General Hospital Department.  Once enslaved in Maryland, 50 year-old Cato Ramsey had fled to New York in 1778 and eventually found employment in the hospital. Another Black who escaped a Maryland master was 60 year-old Sukey who brought 5 year-old Cato with her. Born free within the British lines, the boy may have been the woman’s grandson.
Another Loyalist refugee who found sanctuary in Nova Scotia was Dr. James Van Buren of Hackensack, New Jersey.  When the revolution erupted, he would not allow his two teenaged sons to take up arms with the rebels, “declaring it to be against his principles“. But tending to the wounded, no matter their politics, was not against Van Buren’s principles.
In 1776, General George Washington had Van Buren act as surgeon on “some of the wounded soldiers of the American Army“, but the doctor was not paid for his services. Later that year he “provided a hospital” for the 26th Continental Regiment, a rebel corps which had tried to prevent the British from occupying New York City.
However, when Van Buren followed his political principles by serving as a guide for a British general, rebels arrested him and threatened to hang him. After six days of incarceration in a local church, he was discharged.  In 1778, he was finally able to find sanctuary in New York City, after having his family, his slaves and a few possessions join a British foraging party that had come into his neighbourhood. The Van Buren family remained within the safety of the British lines until they found sanctuary in Clements, a Loyalist settlement in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis County.
Another doctor who enslaved Africans, Van Buren failed to reclaim Joseph Collins, a 30-year old Black man who settled in New Brunswick. It is one of the few instances where the British commanders of New York City granted a Loyalist’s slave his freedom.
The last loyalist doctor of note is John Caleff, a native of Ipswich, Massachusetts who became one of the founders of St. Andrew’s, New Brunswick. No stranger to military casualties, Caleff was the surgeon on an American ship at the capture of Fortress Louisburg, and then on the medical staff of a colonial regiment for five years. Driven into exile by the Revolution, he became surgeon for one of the regiments stationed at Castine, Maine.
Near the end of the revolution, Caleff was appointed as the assistant physician to the royal hospital in Nova Scotia.  But his commission got lost in transit, and Caleff was suddenly without a source of income. His wife and nine children moved to Saint John, New Brunswick where – in August 1784– he was made surgeon to Fort Howe, the garrison that guarded the city’s harbour.
Seven years later, Caleff and his family moved to St. Andrew’s to be among the people he had known in Maine. The loyalist doctor inoculated more than 500 settlers during the town’s 1800 smallpox epidemic, losing only 3 patients to the dreaded disease. Judging by remarks in his will, it seems that Caleff tended to the medical needs of his loyalist community right up to his death in 1812 at age 87.
In evaluating Caleff’s career, the historian Ann G. Condon asserts that “his constant attendance upon the sick and wounded, during both peace and war, for more than six decades” was his greatest contribution. “His professional services must have been an invaluable source of comfort and security to the residents of that young colonial community.
To secure permission to reprint this article contact the author at

Loyal Hill & Captain John Grant, United Empire Loyalist
Author: Brian McConnell UE, history enthusiast, re-enactor, descendant of a Loyalist soldier in the American Revolution, and member of the United Empire Loyalists’ Association of Canada.
Overlooking the Avon River and Minas Basin in Hants County at Summerville, Nova Scotia is one of the most interesting locations where United Empire Loyalists settled after the American Revolution. It is called Loyal Hill and is the lands settled by Captain John Grant who served in the 42 Regiment of Foot (Black Watch) and later commanded British soldiers when they recaptured New York in April 1776. For his military service as a Loyalist he received a grant of 3,000 acres, the largest grant to an individual in Hants County.
At the Loyal Hill Cemetery is a monument placed there in remembrance of Captain John Grant by his descendants. The area where Loyal Hill is located was also in the past known as the “Man of War Lands”. It was part of a land grant first made by King George III on April 9, 1761 to Royal Navy Captains who participated in the sieges of Louisbourg and Quebec. (2) In 1783, as the original grantees did not live up to their obligations, it was escheated and taken back by the Crown. It was then granted to United Empire Loyalists, most notably Captain John Grant.
John Grant was born in Strathspey, Scotland, in Grant-town in 1729, son of Alexander Grant. His mother’s name and the names of brothers or sisters he may have had are unknown. According to a history of his life written by a descendant he was accepted into the army, the Black Watch, at an unusually young age, shortly before his 13th birthday. The Black Watch that acted as a keeping the peace or police force in the highlands of Scotland was formed into the 43rd Regiment of the British Army in May 1740 and was composed of men from several highland clans, including the Grants. Read more…

Isaac Shelby, Patrick Ferguson, and Fire & Sword: The Power of a Good Story
by William Caldwell 28 May 2024 Journal of the American Revolution
A good story spreads like glitter on a craft table: one spill and suddenly it’s everywhere. Readers picking up almost any history book about the American Revolution in the southern colonies will learn about the 1780 Battle of Kings Mountain and the plot point of British Major Patrick Ferguson threatening the Patriots of the southern backcountry. Some examples include:

  • In 1881, Lyman Draper wrote in his Kings Mountain & Its Heroes that “if they did not desist from their opposition to the British arms, he [Ferguson] would march his army over the mountains, hang their leaders, and lay their country waste with fire and sword.”
  • In 1925, J.D. Bailey said in Commanders at Kings Mountain, “Ferguson, hearing the mutterings of the gathering storm, paroled Samuel Phillips, a relative of Colonel Shelby, with the following message: ‘That if they did not desist from their opposition to British arms he would march his army over the mountains, hang their leaders, and lay their country to waste with fire and sword.'”
  • In 1997, John Buchanan included in The Road to Guilford Courthouse, “Deadly in intent and import, the message had been given verbally to Phillips by Ferguson: ‘If they did not desist from their opposition to the British arms, he would march over the mountains, hang their leaders, and lay their country waste with fire and sword.'”
  • In 2001, Walter Edgar described in Partisans and Redcoats, “Meanwhile, as Ferguson marched into the western frontier settlements he sent a personal message to Colonel Isaac Shelby. If the residents of the region ‘did not desist from their opposition to British arms, he would march his army over the mountains, hang their leaders, and lay their country waste with fire and sword.'”…

…It appears almost required that one cannot speak about Kings Mountain or Patrick Ferguson without including the threatening message. The summarized story follows that Ferguson, frustrated at the constant harassment by Patriot partisans in South Carolina and North Carolina in the late summer of 1780, issued a threat of destruction to anyone who continued to oppose him as he organized the Loyalist militia. Ferguson released a Patriot prisoner to convey a threat of hanging Patriot leaders, burning homes, and laying waste to their countryside with fire and sword if resistance continued. The messenger brought this warning directly to Patriot Col. Isaac Shelby deep in the Blue Ridge Mountains, who began organizing the Overmountain Men to confront Ferguson.
Such villainous language and line-in-the-sand ultimatums seem more fitting for a movie than the pages of a history book. This plot point negatively shapes the reader’s perception of Patrick Ferguson for the rest of the story and inspires encouragement for the Patriots as they reply to the threat by crossing the Blue Ridge Mountains and succinctly end the saga of Kings Mountain with the justified killing of Ferguson. It is important to learn all that we can about Ferguson’s message since so much of the story is built upon this cornerstone.  Read more…

Adam Custine—a Fighter for American Independence and Reforms in France
by Johannes von Thadden 30 May 2024 Journal of the American Revolution
In George Washington’s Mount Vernon mansion many visitors take note of the key presented by Lafayette to the first American president, formerly used in the Bastille prison in Paris. Few visitors invest much time to look at a tea set on display in the exhibition and fewer still will wonder about who made Martha and George Washington such a costly and delicate present. It was Adam Custine on his second visit to Mount Vernon in 1781. As deputy division commander Custine was directly next to Gen. Jean-Baptiste comte de Rochambeau and Gen. Antoine baron de Vioménil.
Adam Custine’s way to America
Adam Philippe comte de Custine, baron de Sarreck was born on February 4, 1742 into a noble family residing in    Lorraine in the Eastern part of France. His father had planned a military career for little Adam—and little he was when he joined the army on June 17, 1747 at the age of five.[1] Putting young boys into the army, at least formally, was a way of circumventing a rule requiring a minimum number of years in the army in order qualify for a specific military rank…
…He continued his career up to the rank of colonel and eagerly wished to advance further, but the French army was overstaffed with generals. Custine knew that only a combination of good contacts and further military experience could get him to where he thought to belong.
When France decided to openly support the American insurgents, Adam Custine understood that this provided him with a unique opportunity: he pressured the minister of war “with great urgency” requesting to give him a command in the expeditionary army and to promote him to the general rank.[5] It surely helped that the minister was a relative. He received the command of the infantry regiment Saintonge, already planned to be shipped to America, but was only promoted to the rank of brigadier, one rank below general, as deputy division commander. Read more…

Hessian Soldiers Travelling to America: New York A Soldier’s Life April & May 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

April & May 1780: At New York (page 79)

Continuation of Occurences in North America During the Fourth Year, 1780 (page 79)

APRIL [1780]
6 April. I went on watch at our regimental hospital in the city.

8 April. At three o’clock in the morning, a command of one hundred men of the Ansbach
and  Bayreuth  regiments  went  to  Jersey  and  returned  with  much  hay  and  straw,  as  well  as
several head of cattle. Today our regiment moved out to drill for the first time.

14 April. Our regiment was measured.
16 April. I went on watch over the naval stores as lance corporal.
17 April. Our regiment was arranged in ranks.
18 April. I was assigned to make cartridges.
29 April. I received a letter from my parents in Wunsiedel.

MAY [1780]
6 May. I went on watch on the ship Peter and Paul. This ship stood in the East River near New York and was an old French frigate of forty-two guns. On board were captured seamen from Spain, France, and America who were in custody and being guarded. Everyone captured on the water, whether ships’ crews,  merchants, sailors, or marines, was confined on the ship and guarded according to the Articles of War.

10 May.  Our  regiment  passed  in  review.  Many  generals  and  staff  officers  were  present. Lieutenant  General  von  Knyphausen was saluted  with  flags  and swords. He  indicated  his greatest  pleasure  with  our  drill  and  maneuvers  and  expressed  his  thanks.  Colonel  von Seybothen was also completely satisfied with us.
On this  day  also,  Charleston,  the  capital  city  of  South  Carolina,  surrendered  to  Generals Clinton  and  Cornwallis  after  an  obstinate  resistance. The  American  General  [Benjamin] Lincoln, who commanded there, was also taken prisoner with six thousand militia and regular troops, as well as many cannon and munitions, plus all the ships that were in the harbor.

19 May. We fired our weapons by companies. Each man received twelve cartridges.
21 May. I went on orderly duty at Voit Regiment.
22 May. Private [Christoph] Kaufmann, of Quesnoy’s Company, died  here  in the English hospital at Vauxhall after an illness of almost one year. He was a master mason from Berneck.
26 May. I did not feel well, had many headaches, and therefore had to pass going on watch.
28 May. I was bled and thereafter felt better.
29 May. The English here made a bonfire because of the capture of Charleston.
31 May.  Our  regiment  carried  out  punishment.  Private  [Johann  Georg]  Magd,  of  Eyb’s Company, had  to  run  a  gauntlet  of  two  hundred  men  sixteen  times  because  of  drunkenness while on the command at Paulus Hook, when he drank to excess with English cannoneers. A baggage  servant,  [Johann  Gottlieb]  Koppky, of  the  Colonel’s  Company,  ran  eight  times because  of  daily  drunkenness,  and  because  he  had  one  time  drunk  to  excess  with  the Quartermaster Sergeant [Johann Friedrich] Salzmann of Eyb’s company.
(to be continued)

Some Loyalists had very large families
In Loyalist times, winters were cold, winter nights were long, and there was no Internet, TV, or even radio to occupy the evenings. Is that why families from those times seemed large, at least by today’s standards, or was it purely practical — the farm was expanding and more hands were required to till it?
See The Largest Loyalist Families.
Whatever the case, tell us about your largest loyalist family, if the family was a dozen or more.

Frederick Keller (24 children)
Frederick Keller, UE, was born 15 Nov 1757 in Albany, New York, USA. He served during the Revolutionary War with the King’s Rangers, and died in 1849 in Fredricksburg Twp, Lennox Addington, Ontario, Canada.
Frederick was married four times. He had only one child by his first wife, whose name was Guise — what happened to her is unknown. His second wife was Hannah; by her he had four children. When she died he married Elizabeth Peters and had 11 children. When she died he married Hannah Sixbury and had 8 more children for a total of 24 children. The oldest was born 1782 in Brunswick, Rensselaer, NY and the last child was born 14 apr 1828 in Ontario, at which time Frederick was 71 years old. He died in 1849 in Fredericksburg at 92 years of age.

Benjamin Eastman (23 children)
Benjamin Eastman (my great x4 grandfather) was born on 3 October 1759 in New Milford, Litchfield, Connecticut, son of Benjamin & Mary (nee Hitchcock) Eastman. In 1777, at Saratoga, he joined the Royal Army under General Burgoyne (Jessups’s corps). Benjamin arrived in Cornwall, Stomont, Ontario, Canada in 1783 and received land. He passed away on 21 October 1836 in Cornwall, Ontario, Canada at the age of 77 years. He is buried with his wives at Trinity Anglican in Cornwall, Ontario, Canada.

Cyrenius Parke (18 children)
Cyrenius Parke is my Loyalist ancestor and also the ancestor of countless others. Eighteen of his children reached adulthood, married and populated Ontario.
Before the War: Cyrenius was born in Litchfield, Connecticut Colonial America 22 Dec 1754, the 5th child of parents James Parke and Sarah Newcombe. His first wife, Elizabeth Carscallen was born 21 Dec 1755 in Queensbury Township, Charlotte, New York, USA, died 1788 in Albany Township, Albany, New York. Together they had eight children. In 1789 he married a second time to Elizabeth Huffman b. 13 Apr 1770, daughter of Elias Hoffman and Elizabeth, at Camden Valley, New York, USA. She died 9 Dec 1846 at Hay Bay, North Fredricksburgh Twp., Lennox and Addington Co. They had twelve children.

Last week’s Loyalist Trails noted the Last Post: WEIRMEIR, Arnold Vernon, 19 April, 1930 – 19 May, 2024  who was descended from two of the three biggest families, Frederick Keller UEL and Cyrenius Parks UEL.

Book:  A New Book about Barbara Heck, Known as the Mother of Methodism in Canada and America
Author: Barbara Bingham, published at, 6 Sept 2023.
Set in Ireland, America and Canada, All Good Reason is the true story of Barbara Heck from Limerick, Ireland, recreated with meticulous use of historical sources and inherited details to bring history alive for every reader. Written in the present tense, she emerges as a stoic, forthright and mindful woman who has a claim to fame in the British colonies of America in the 1760s and who encapsulates the lives of women amongst the loyal supporters of their King of Great Britain and Ireland.
Her story blends immigration experiences with dominant Palatinate family heritage that calls for her community’s loyalty in their host countries with dire consequences. She keeps their morale under-girded with revitalized identity in New York by introducing Methodism to America. She holds respect and standing in a male world with a sense of reality, yet she burns with frustrations. A stoic personality keeps her marriage vows intact when under attack from attraction and hurtful judgment. When historically-significant scenarios hurt her fellow “Irish Palatines”, she nearly buckles under the strain. Canada becomes the last place of refuge where loyalty has a result. Hindsight and accountability are quantified; overall, did the four countries of heritage and refuge deceitfully influence their lives?
The book is available through the publisher, and through sites such as Amazon.

Advertised on 24 May 1774: “RAN away … a Negro Boy, named GOREE.”

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

“RAN away … a Negro Boy, named GOREE.”

As the summer of 1774 approached, an enslaved youth named Goree saw his opportunity to liberate himself by running away from Daniel Vose of Milton, Massachusetts.  Vose, for his part, joined the ranks of enslavers who placed newspaper advertisement that offered rewards for the capture and return of enslaved men and women who made similar declarations of independence during the era of the American Revolution.  He provided a description of the Goree, encouraging readers to engage in surveillance of all Black people, especially young Black men, with the intention that such scrutiny would aid in identifying him.  Vose also warned “All Masters of Vessels and others … against harbouring, concealing, or carrying off” Goree or else face “the Penalty of the Law” for aiding him.
Vose made quite an investment in locating and securing Goree.  In addition to offering “six Dollars Reward and necessary Charges” for securing him in jail and sending word to Milford, he also ran advertisements in several newspapers.  On May 30, his notice appeared in the Boston Evening-Post, the Boston-Gazette, and the Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Post-Boy, all three newspapers published in Boston on Mondays.  Read more…

UELAC Loyalist Directory: New Contributions
Entries which have been added, or revised, this week in the Loyalist Directory, with thanks to Katie Cleghorn of Sir Guy Carleton Branch has contributed updates from her family research about:

  • Hannah Sypes UEL (Sipes) / Stooks who applied for UE status (Upper Canada Land Petition) and land on the basis of her first Loyalist husband Jacob SYPES who died in 1776. She came to Canada with her second Loyalist husband Edward STOOKS. From Pennsylvania, they resettled in the Home District – Bertie Twp, Welland Co, Upper Canada. She bore eleven children, nine with Jacob and two with Edward.
  • Thomas McIlmoyle UEL – son of John McIlmoyle Sr. UEL – settled in the Eastern District. He married twice, Sarah Falkner and Nancy Burritt, both daughters of Loyalists.
  • Peter Finney/Fennell UEL  who resettled in the Eastern District, Osnabrung (might this be Osnabruck Twp?)

If you are willing to submit some information, send a note to All help is appreciated. …doug

Podcast: Did George Washington Have Heirs?
by  Cassandra Good, May 2024 at Ben Franklin’s World
The United States Constitution of 1787 gave many Americans pause about the powers that the new federal government could exercise and how the government’s leadership would rest with one person, the president.
The fact that George Washington would likely serve as the new nation’s first president calmed many Americans’ fears that the new nation was creating an opportunity for a hereditary monarch. Washington had proven his commitment to a democratic form of government when he gave up his army command peacefully and voluntarily. He had proven he was someone Americans could trust. Plus, George Washington had no biological heirs–no sons–to whom he might pass on the presidency.
But while George Washington had no biological heirs, he did have heirs.
Using details from her book First Family, Good reveals: Information about George Washington’s stepchildren, Patsy and Jacky Custis; How George and Martha Washington came to play large roles in the lives of Jacky’s children–Eliza, Patty, Nelly, and Wash Custis; And the work Eliza, Patty, Nelly, and Wash Custis put in throughout their lives to be seen and recognized as the heirs to George and Martha Washington. Listen in…

18th-century business women – trade cards
by Sarah Murden 26 July 2018 in All Things Georgian
We have looked at trade cards in a previous blog and if we’re honest this post is slightly self-indulgent as we’re fascinated by them. Today we thought that we would focus on the trade cards for those women who chose to run their own business or were forced out of necessity to continue running their husband’s business after his death as they would most likely have no other source of income.
There is an assumption that all women in the eighteenth and early nineteenth-century needed or wanted a husband to secure their position in society, although for some this was not the case. Whether they succeeded on not we may never know, but they certainly tried to be self-supporting. Read more…

Klondike Women
by Nelle Oosterom, Posted 6 May 2024 at Canada’s History
They came from all walks of life to join the Yukon gold rush.
Prior to her book Women of the Klondike being published in 1995, Frances
Backhouse wrote an article for the December 1988-January 1989 issue of
The Beaver magazine.
The story describes the women who sought their fortune in Dawson City, Yukon, at the height of the 1896–99 Klondike gold rush. Backhouse estimated that there were about five hundred women in Dawson City in 1898, out of a total population of sixteen thousand.
Some accompanied their husbands, while others were single. They worked as shopkeepers, cooks, launderers, dancers, sex workers, nurses, doctors, and gold miners. A few dropped in as tourists and newspaper reporters.
The Klondike’s womenfolk fell into one of three broad categories, according to Martha Black, one of the Dawson City residents quoted by Backhouse. At the bottom of the social ladder were prostitutes; in the middle were entertainers, such as cancan dancers; and at the top were the more “respectable” homemakers and small business owners like Black. Read more…

In the News:

Glengarry Encore Explores Cornwall’s Historical Sites
Jason Setnyk 29 May 2024 Seaway News
On May 22, two groups from Glengarry Encore Education Centre visited several of Cornwall’shistoric sites, including the Historic SDG Jail, the Cornwall Community Museum, and the Saunders Hydro Dam Visitor Centre.
“We first went to the Historic SDG Jail, an amazing place to visit, and now we’re here at the Cornwall Community Museum. Next, we’ll go to the Saunders Hydro Dam Visitor Centre,” said Helena McCuaig, Chair of Glengarry Encore.
Helena shared her passion for history, inspired by a school teacher with United Empire Loyalist roots. Read more…

Events Upcoming

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…

McCAW’S ADOLPHUSTOWN ADVENTURE 2024, June 13-17, Adolphustown ON

Re-enactment encampment on the grounds of the UEL Heritage Centre & Park, Adolphustown. Celebrating the 240th anniversary of the Loyalist Landing. This will be  a civilian camp with traces of military and naval influence. There will be historical wooden boats propelled with oar and sail, ongoing camp life, demonstrations, crafts and cooking and period sutlers selling a variety of goods. For the first time ever seen, we are offering a period barber with special skills. (See next item for Sunday service and Loyalist Day flag raising.  The camp is open to the public 10 am – 5 pm. Adult entrance fee $5.
Visit THE UNITED EMPIRE LOYALIST HERITAGE CENTRE AND PARK for directins, camping information etc

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:

  • Mark Edward Lender“Liberty or Death!” – Some Revolutionary Statistics and Existential Warfare
  • John L. SmithThe Unexpected Abigail Adams: A Woman “Not Apt to Be Intimidated”

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.

Col. John Butler Branch, Loyalist Day (Ontario) Sat 15 June

On Saturday, June 15, 2024 the Colonel John Butler (Niagara) Branch will celebrate our annual United Empire Loyalist Flag Raising at 10 am at the Cenotaph in Niagara-0n-the-Lake  in recognition of United Empire Loyalist Day on June 19th.  The Lord Mayor will proclaim the following week as Loyalist week during which time the Loyalist Flag will be flown.  The Fort George Fife and Drum Corps will perform at the Flag Raising ceremony.  Everyone is invited to come.  Those who have period clothing are encouraged to wear it.  Questions to

ST. ALBAN’S CENTRE, Landing of the Loyalists, Sunday June 16, 11am

COMMEMORATE the 240th ANNIVERSARY of the Landing of the UNITED EMPIRE LOYALISTS in Adolphustown on June 16, 1784. All Welcome!
Stephen Bruce Medd: In the troubadour tradition of passing on history through song, balladeer Stephen Bruce Medd will bring to life the stories of first peoples, early explorers and settlers through a selection of his compositions inspired by local history and by his own Loyalist roots.
Guest Speaker: Major (Ret’d) Tanya J. Grodzinski, Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Royal Military College of Canada
A Sweets & Savouries Tea at the adjacent Old Adolphustown Town Hall.

Flag-raising Ceremony at the Old UEL Burying Ground at 2pm. Located in the UEL Heritage Centre and Park, a 10-minute walk, parking available
Inquiries: 613-373-8865 or

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

  • Tuesday 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

  • The British attacked St. Louis (modern-day Missouri) in 1780. After Spain entered the American Revolution in 1779, the British hoped to conquer and gain control of the Mississippi.
    While St. Louis was primarily a trading hub, it also served as Spain’s administrative capital of Upper Louisiana. About 300 people consisting of free and enslaved blacks, French settlers and Spanish soldiers defended the town against:
    British, Sioux, Chippewa, Menominee, Winnebago, Sac, Fox and other Indigenous forces. The British and their Indigenous allies simultaneously attacked Virginia patriots across the river at Cahokia. Both attacks were unsuccessful, ending the westernmost conflicts of the Revolution.
  • Townsends, or “anything food”
    • Are you a fan of a SOP?
      It’s a piece of bread that has been gradually soaked in soup or broth, thank you eighteenth century.
      Soggy bread in soup? Does it get a yes from you?
  • This week in History 
    • 28 May 1754 Jumonville Glen, PA. Virginia militia Lt Col George Washington’s attack on French & Indians led by Ensign Joseph Coulon de Jumonville in contested SW PA left several dead & wounded & began what became the French & Indian (or 7 Years) War. image
    • 29 May 1765 Patrick Henry launches a fiery denunciation of British tax policies and introduces the seven Virginia Resolves into the House of Burgesses. image
    • 1 June 1774 The Boston Port Bill (In response to the Boston Tea Party) became effective and Britain closed the port of Boston. 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
    • 27 May 1775 Boston, MA Adm Samuel Graves sends 40 Royal Marines & the schooner HMS Diana to attack Americans on Noodle’s Island. The reinforced rebels fend off the attacks & destroy Diana after she runs aground. Minimal casualties on both sides. image
    • 29 May 1775 Philadelphia, PA. A declaration penned by John Jay invited inhabitants of Canada to side with the Americans as the 14th colony. However, the population will ally itself with Great Britain rather than cultural assimilation as part of the US. image
    • 31 May 1775 The Mecklenburg Resolves adopted in NC. The resolutions fell short of a declaration of independence. Although published in 1775, the text of the Mecklenburg Resolves was lost after the RevWar and not rediscovered until 1838. image
    • 31 May 1775 Philadelphia Continental Congress debates abandoning Ft Ticonderoga & Crown Point, key northern fortresses in upper NY. The NY & New England delegates reversed the decision & Congress voted to hold the forts.  image
    • 26 May 1776 Montreal, CAN. Col. Benedict Arnold marches to Quinze Chiens, where he overtakes a force of British & Indians under Capt George Forster with almost 500 American prisoners. They agree to exchange the Americans without a fight. image
    • 27 May 1776 Deputies of the Six Nations held an audience with Congress. They staged a military parade with Continental troops and soldiers from the local Association. Most of the nations would eventually side with the British.  image
      29 May 1776 Capt John Barry, commander of the USS Lexington, makes the first capture of a British warship, HMS Edward, off the coast of Virginia. Making Barry a national hero & boosting the morale of the Continental Navy.  image
    • 28 May 1777 Morristown, NJ. Gen Washington’s army of 8,000 strong leaves the winter cantonment and deploys to the Middlebrook Valley to observe & counter possible British movement on Philadelphia.  image
    • 31 May 1777, Middlebrook, NJ. From Army HQ, Gen George Washington wrote that he was sending one Monsieur Philippe Charles Jean Baptiste Tronson du Courdray to Philadelphia because du Courdray believed Congress had given him command of the American Artillery. image
    • 27 May 1778 Matawan, Monmouth Co., NJ Loyalist raiders attack the home of Patriot militia leader Major John Burrowes. But Burrowes escapes by slipping out a window & swimming across Matawan Creek. The raiders go on to destroy mills & salt works. image
    • 30 May 1778 Cobbleskill, NY Mohawk warriors under Joseph Brant disperse the local militia & burn the town, killing & capturing many settlers. This raid initiates a long series of frontier actions, the only viable British tactic in upper NY after Saratoga.  image
    • 28 May 1779 Kingsbridge, NY. A force of 6K British & Hessians assemble for Gen Henry Clinton’s campaign to take the American fortifications at West Point. Some 70 sailboats & 150 scows will transport them up the North (Hudson) River. image
    • 25 May 1780 Detroit, Indian Territory. British Capt Henry Bird leads 250 French Canadian militia & Indians against the American garrison at Falls of the Ohio River (Louisville, KY). Along the way an additional 700 warriors join him. image
    • 25 May 1780 Morristown, NJ Two CT Continental Line regiments mutiny over food shortages and back pay. Refusing Col Return Meigs’s attempt to parlay, they are finally suppressed by Pennsylvania troops. image
    • 26 May 1780 St. Louis, MO Captain Fernando de Leyba & a 310-man Spanish garrison repulse an attack by 300 British soldiers & 900 Indians under Captain Emmanuel Hesse. The Battle of Fort San Carlos, was the only battle in MO during RevWar. image
    • 27 May 1780 Lt Col Banastre Tarleton’s British troops under Col Charles Campbell burn the plantation home of retired Col Thomas Sumter along the High Hills of the Santee R. This prompts Sumter to break parole & rejoin the patriot cause. image
    • 29 May 1780, Waxhaw’s Creek, NC. A cavalry charge by Banastre Tarleton’s Loyalists broke a force of 350 men of Col Buford’s 3rd VA Infantry Regt. Tarleton’s Tories proceeded to shoot them after their surrender, spawning the term “Tarleton’s Quarter.”  image
    • 30 May 1780 New Bridge NJ. Eight British soldiers were killed & several wounded by friendly fire when British troops attempted to attack a body of the Bergen Militia in the Zabriskie-Steuben House.  image
    • 1 June 1780 Bermuda. In the Capt. James Nicholson’s 28-gun frigate Trumbull engages in an hours-long slugfest of broadsides with Capt. John Coulthard’s 32-gun British privateer. Both ships limp away with damage & some 40 American & 90 British casualties. image
    • 25 May 1787: The Constitutional Convention of the newly-created United States convenes in Philadelphia. It’s presided over by future #president George Washington. The Articles of Confederation is scrapped and the U.S. #Constitution is created. image
  • Clothing and Related: 
  • Miscellaneous
    • Foundling Museum: Tokens
      This engraved medallion is inscribed with the initials J + P and the word ‘Needham,’ with a date of 6 June 1758. This is one of the ‘orphaned’ tokens in the Foundling Hospital’s collection.
      In 1760 the admission system changed. Tokens were no longer a requirement for admission and instead, receipts were introduced. By the 19th century, the Foundling Hospital’s governors had placed some of the Hospital’s billets and tokens on public display.
      Unfortunately, none of them thought to make a note of which token belonged to which baby. The museum is therefore left with many tokens that we are still working to reunite with the record of the child they were left with.
      The identities of  J + P, the meaning of ‘Needham’ and the fate of the baby this token was left with are therefore yet to be uncovered. We hope that in the future, this child’s memory can be reunited with the token their parent intended for them.
    • After 1650, a fashion for miniatures with overlays developed allowing the portrait to be ‘dressed’ in different costumes.  These were made in the Netherlands.  The first here allows the sitter ‘become’ a Carmelite nun.  (Victoria & Albert Museum, London)
    • Been about five tears since I first read this, on the English language’s completely universal but totally invisible adjective hierarchy, and I can honestly say I’ve thought about it most days since.


Published by the UELAC
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