This information was originally
LIST OF UNITED EMPIRE LOYALISTS WHO SETTLED AT LONG POINT.
NOTE.-Where no date is given it has been found impossible to
obtain accurate information. Where the date is marked (?) it
is approximately, but may not be absolutely correct.
Name���������������������������������������� Township����������������������� Date.
Anderson, Captain Walter������������ Charlotteville�������������������� 1799
Austin, Solomon������������������������� Woodhouse���������������������� 1795
Berdan, Albert��������������������������� Woodhouse���������������������� 1798
Buckner, or Boughner, Mathias������
Buckner, or Boughner, Henry��������
Bowlby, Thomas������������������������� Woodhouse���������������������� 1797
Brown, Samuel�������������������������� Charlotteville��������������������� 1800
Culver, Jabez���������������������������� Townsend������������������������ 1794
Culver, Timothy������������������������� Townsend������������������������ 1795
Cope, William���������������������������� Walsingham�� ��������������������1798
Davis, Thomas�������������������������� Woodhouse
Dedrick, Lucas�������������������������� Walsingham���������������������� 1793
Dougharty, Anthony������������������ Townsend������������������������� 1810?
Freeman, Daniel����� �������������������Charlotteville��������������������� 1798
Finch, Titus����������������������������� Charlotteville��������������������� 1798
Foster, Elias���������������������������� Walsingham����������������������� 1800
Fairchild, Peter������������ ������������Townsend�������������������������� 1805?
Green, Reuben������������������������� Townsend�������������������������� 1811
Gilbert, Josiah����������������������� ��Woodhouse������������������������� 1799
Hutchison, Capt. William����������� Walsingham������������������������� 1798
Hazen, Daniel������������������������� Walsingham������������������������� 1797
Haviland, John������������������������ Townsend������ ���������������������1803
Munro, Lieutenant James���������� Charlotteville������������������ �����1796
Montross, Peter���������������������� Charlotteville����������������������� 1799
Millard, Daniel������������������������� Woodhouse������������������������� 1799
Matthews, James�������������������� Woodhouse������������������������� 1799
McCall, Donald������������������������ Charlotteville����������������������� 1796
Powell, Abraham��������������������� Windham����������������������������� 1799
Ryerse, Samuel �����������������������Woodhouse������������������������� 1795
Ryerse, or Ryerson, Joseph������� Charlotteville����������������������� 1799
Smith, Abraham���������������������� Charlotteville����������������������� 1794
Smith, Hart��������������������� �������Windham���������������������������� 1811
Spurgin, William���������������������� Charlotteville����������������������� 1800
Secord, Silas�������������������������� Walsingham
Secord, Peter������������������������ Charlotteville������������������� �����1793
Tisdale, Lot��������������������������� Charlotteville������������������������ 1798
Teeple, Peter������������������������� Charlotteville������������������������ 1793
Welch (Walsh), Thomas������ �����Charlotteville������������������������ 1794
Williams, Jonathan������������������ Woodhouse�������������������������� 1800
Wycoff, Peter������������������������ Woodhouse�������������������������� 1801
Wilson, Jacob������������������������ Woodhouse�������������������������� 1805?
Wilson, Joseph����������������������� Woodhouse�������������������������� 1805?
(The first Loyalist who settled in Norfolk County.)
THE Dedrick family were of German descent, and early settlers in
Pennsylvania.� Lucas Dedrick was one of the Pennsylvania Loyalists,
but remained in his native state till 1793, when he came directly to
He built a log cabin on the high land overlooking the marsh, about
a mile and a half west of the present village of Port Rowan. He
was, no doubt, the second white settler in Walsingham, his predecessor
being the noted Dr. "Witch" Troyer (not a Loyalist), who had settled
lake front in Eastern Walsingham. It was not till 1797, after the
township had been regularly surveyed, that Mr. Dedrick received the
patent for the land on which he had settled.
The creek which flows into the lake just west of Port Rowan is
called Dedrick's creek.� Over it Mr. Dedrick built a rude but
substantial bridge, the earliest engineering structure in the county.
One of his daughters, Hannah, was married to John Backhouse,
a major of the Norfolk militia.� She received in 1815 a grant of
200 acres near her father's home in Walsingham.
FREDERICK MABY was a native of Massachusetts. He appears to have
not taken a very active part throughout the whole of the
Revolutionary War, yet there is undeniable evidence that he
had joined the Royal standard previous to 1783, for it is so
mentioned in the officiai list of United Empire Loyalists preserved
in the Crown Lands' department of the Ontario Government.
Massachusetts surpassed all other states in the stringency of
the laws against the Loyalists (Vide supra Chap. V.) Immediately
after the Treaty of Paris, the power of the triumphant insurgents
being secured, the hatred of the new govemment for those that
remained loyal showed itself unmistakably. Sure of immunity, the
Americans treated the families of the Loyalists with the utmost
severity. Frederick Maby owned a large farm in Massachusetts and
was accounted a wealthy man for those times, for he was rich in
flocks and herds. But night after night the grossest outrages
were inflicted on the unoffending animals of this Loyalist owner.
One night sixteen of his cows had their tails cut off.� During
another the sinews and tendons of the hind legs of his horses
were cut and the poor animals had to be shot. Ears were slit,
nostrils split open, and other most dastardly outrages inflicted
without the condemnation of the Legislature. Nothing remained but
voluntary exile to Canada.
Accordingly, in 1785, the Maby family fled to New Brunswick,
settling at St. John along with a cousin named Peter Secord.
At their home in that province they were occasionally visited by an
English trapper, Ramsay by name, and, as it was in the tale of
one of his adventures the Mabys first heard of the Long Point
district, it may be worth while to relate it.
This trapper was accustomed to make yearly visits up the lakes
for the purpose of trading with the Indians. On one of these
trips he took his little nephew with him, a boy at that time
about 10 years of age. During his voyage along the northern
shore of Lake Erie with his canoe richly laden with gaudy prints,
and the trinkets so dear to the hearts of the dusky natives,
and also with a considerable quantity of liquor, he came to
Long Point and landed for the night.� There they fell in with
nine Indians, whose eagle eyes took an inventory of the
contents of the canoe, and in one of those treacherous outbursts
of overwhelming covetousness, seized his boat and merchandise.
It was not long before they got drunk on his fire-water and resolved
to burn him at the stake and hold a war dance round the flaming
body of the ufortunate white man. However, the potent liquor
proved rather too much for the Indians, and when they found
themselves able to stand on their feet only with difficulty,
they resolved to leave the prisoner alive till morning. So they
bound the Englishman, his back to a tree and his hands tied
around it by thongs of buckskin, and in the most blissful
unconsciousness of what was in store for them, eight lay down
to sleep, leaving one of their number as guard. This one relieved
his loneliness by copious draughts from the bountiful supply of
good liquor so fortunately provided.
Unfortunately for them, they had neglected to tie the boy,
who was hiding timidly among the trees on the outskirts of the camp.
Ramsay watched his chance, and calling the boy, asked him to
steal a knife and cut the thongs which bound his hands. The boy did
so, and forthwith Ramsay seized the knife, and making a dash at
the already tottering guard, struck him to the heart. Then
seizing a musket he proceeded to brain the whole party, an easy
task, for the Indians had long since passed the stage of
consciousness. The tables being thus successfully turned the
Englishman and his nephew reloaded their canoe and proceeded
on their journey.
This tragic tale, whether it is to be credited or not, is at least
believed by the descendants of the Maby family now living, who say
that it has been handed down from generation to generation in
their family as a true adventure of their friend, in the
locality where their family afterwards settled.
Let us come back, however, to something which may well be
regarded as more authentic by the sceptical minds of this
On one of his subsequent trips up the great lakes, Ramsay was
accompanied by Peter Secord. Together they visited Turkey
Point and explored the country inland for some distance. Secord
was very much delighted with the land, and on returning to
New Brunswick persuaded his cousins to move west. The long
journey was accomplished in 1793, and they settled in the
township of Charlotteville, on the high land overlooking Turkey Point.
Mr. Maby, however, died within a year of his coming to his new
home, and was buried on the top of the high ridge which skirts the
lake. In 1795, when Lieutenant Governor Simcoe visited the Long
Point district he was shown this grave, the grave of the first white
man who had died in the district, and the Governor knelt with
reverence by the rudely-shaped mound.
The wife of Frederick Maby was named Lavinia. In 1796 she applied
for a further grant of land in her own name. On the 20th of June
of the year mentioned, a list of applicants for lands in the
townships of Walsingham, Charlotteville, Woodhouse, and Long Point
settlement generally, was filed in the office of acting
Surveyor-General Smith. The names of some of the applicants are
well known, Ryerse, Maby, Backhouse, Secord and others. In the
case of Mrs. Maby, a widow, about whose patent there was some
delay in the department, Governor Simcoe was very peremptory
in his order that she, being the widow of a Loyalist, must have
her application promptly attended to.
The family of Maby are connected with the Teeple, Stone, Secord,
Smith, Layman and Montross families. Their descendants live at
present in Charlotteville and Walsingham.
As is mentioned in the previous chapter, Peter Secord paid a visit,
to the Long Point country before it was settled, and on returning to
New Brunswick induced his cousin, Frederick Maby, to move thither.
The Maby party consisted of Frederick Maby, his wife and seven
children, with the husbands of two of the daughters, Peter Teeple and
John Stone, and also Peter Secord. They all settled in Charlotteville.
Another Secord family which settled in Norfolk was that of Silas Secord
who had been a sergeant in Butlers Rangers and had settled, in 1786,
with his wife and one child in the Niagara District. He was
subsequently given an allotment in Walsingham. One of his daughters
was married to Joseph Andrews, of the same place.
SERGEANT PETER TEEPLE was one of the earliest settlers in Norfolk
County, coming with his father-in-law, Frederick Maby, in 1793.
He settled on lot eight of the broken front line of Charlotteville.
Subsequently three of his sons received land in Oxford County,
whither he also removed a few years later.
William Teeple, laborer, son of Peter Teeple, a U. E. Loyalist,
two hundred acres, Oxford, in Oxford County, 14th January, 1812.
Edward Teeple, two hundred acres, Oxford, in Oxford County,
6th January, 1815.
Pellum C., Teeple, two hundred acres, Oxford, in Oxford County,
8th December, 1832.
Luke Teeple, two hundred acres in Charlotteville, Norfolk County,
20th May, 1817.*
Sergeant Teeple was quite a prominent man in Norfolk. He was one
of the first justices of the peace, and one of the three appointed
to administer oaths to municipal officers. He was also a prominent
member of the first Baptist Church in Norfolk, and one of the
original trustees of that body.
During the war of 1812, Luke Teeple, the Sergeants youngest son,
while visiting his friends in New Jersey, was arrested by the
Americans, and kept as a prisoner for over two years. On being
freed he immediately returned to his home in Norfolk County.
* The entries are from the Docket books of grants of land to
United Empire Loyalists and military claimants, preserved in
the Crown Lands Department, Toronto.
IN New Jersey four Acts were passed by the Legislature dealing
with the Loyalists of that State. The first provided for the
punishment of traitors and disaffected persons; another provided
for the taking charge of and leasing the real estates, and for
the confiscation of the personal estates of certain fugitives
and offenders therein named; a third for forfeiting to and
vesting in the state the real property of persons designated in
the second statute; while a fourth more rigorously defined and
enunciated the principles of the first. By it certain offenders
who had contributed provisions and other specified articles to
the king's service were given sixty days to leave the state,
after which time, if they still remained, they were to be
adjudged guilty of felony and to suffer death.
Abraham Smith had been a soldier in the New Jersey volunteers and
had taken a rather prominent part in the Revolutionary War. It
seems that he did not realize the seriousness of this statute,
for the sixty days had passed and he had not conformed to the
regulations. Promptly at the expiration of the allotted time,
there appeared at the house a sergeant and a few troopers with a
warrant for the arrest of the head of the family. But Mr. Smith
had seen them coming and had had time to conceal himself. His
wife met the soldiers at the door and coolly told them that her
husband had gone that morning to Summerville, to make
arrangements for transporting their goods to Canada, and she did
not expect him back before the evening of the following day. She
also volunteered the information that they were about ready to
leave, and pointed to sundry large wooden boxes, in which they
intended to transport the goods they were taking with them. "You
and your family may go," replied the sergeant, "but your husband
will have to stay and stand his trial". So they left, with the
intention of returning the following evening for their man. During
their absence preparations were hurriedly made, Mr. Smith was
put into a large box, and with him some provisions and a couple
of jars of milk. Then the box with its precious freight was
duly lifted with a couple of others on to the first load,
and one of the hired men drove the team straight for the
northern boundaries of the state. They travelled all that
night and part of the succeeding day as rapidly as possible.
When they had crossed the borders of the state whose regulations
Smith had violated, they proceeded more leisurely, though
by no means without danger. The returning soldiers were
calmly met by the information that Mr. Smith had not returned,
and they had better take the road for Summerville and look for
him there. By the time the sergeant realized that he had been
duped, Smith had crossed the borders of Maine into New Brunswick,
whither his brave wife and family followed soon after.
After remaining a short time in New Brunswick they removed to
Western Canada, settling first in the eastern part of what is
now Welland County. Their eldest son, William, came still
farther west, and lived among the Indians near Long Point. His
father, mother, brothers and sisters removed to Charlotteville
about 1794, and "squatted" on land about the centre of that
township. This particular portion was secured to them along with
other lots by patents issued about three years later, by Hon.
Peter Russell, acting Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada.
Another Smith family (Loyalists) settled in Norfolk County
some years later, namely, Hart Smith, also of the New Jersey
volunteers. From New Brunswick he came west to the township of
Crowland, in Lincoln County, and thence to Windham, in 1811.
The Crown Lands' records show the following grants of land to
Catherine Doan, wife of John Doan, and daughter of Hart Smith,
28th May, 1811, two hundred acres in Charlotteville.
Eliza, daughter of Hart Smith, 8th April, 1812, two hundred
acres in Windham.
Aaron, son of Hart Smith, 8th April, 1812, two hundred acres in
THE McMichael family are from Ayrshire, in Scotland. Early in the
eighteenth century they emigrated to America, one branch of the
family settling in New Jersey and another in Pennsylvania. When
the war broke out Edward McMichael was a prosperous merchant in
Philadelphia. Of him, Colonel Sabine has the following note
(Vol. II., p. 72):
"Edward McMichael, of Pennsylvania, was lieutenant in the
Whig army while stationed at Fort Schuyler, but in August, 1776,
he deserted to the enemy."
He was given a captain's commission in the "Guides and Pioneers"
of the British army, and at the battle of Trenton was wounded
in the face and deprived of the sight of one eye. Later he was
with the unfortunate Cornwallis at Yorktown. After the war he
was attainted of treason and his property confiscated, for the
Legislature of Pennsylvanla designated sixty-two persons who
were required to surrender themselves to some judge of the
court or justice of the peace within a specified time,
and abide trial for treason, or in default thereof to stand
attainted. McMichael was very far from pursuing the suicidal
policy of staying in the "burning fiery furnace" if he could
get safely away, and at the expiration of the days
of grace he was settling his family on the western bank of
the Niagara River. Consequently his property in his native
state was confiscated, for, by a subsequent Act, the estates
of thirty-six persons who had been previously attainted,
were declared to be confiscated. Among this list also appears
the name of McMichael.
In the Niagara district the McMichael family remained till 1794,
when they removed farther west and settled in Walsingham, on the
lake front.� The Captain lived but six years in his new home.
In 1800 he passed away, leaving to his widow the stupendous task of
bringing up her ten children amid the hardships of a wilderness home.
But bravely Mrs. McMicliael applied herself to the best interests
of her and the high characters of her children show that in
them the mother's work was blessed.
SOLOMON AUSTIN was originally from North Carolina. He was a private
in the Queen's Rangers and served all through the Revolutionary war.
On one occasion, at least, he exhibited conspicuous bravery.
This was at the battle of the Horseshoe. The standard-bearer was killed
and the flag fell to the ground and was in danger of being lost.
Solomon Austin leaped forward, and grasping the standard bore it
bravely till the close of the action. After the battle Major-General
Simcoe inquired his name, praised him in public before the marshalled
company, and gave him to understand that if he could ever be of
service to him afterwards his bravery would not be forgotten.
After the war North Carolina passed a Confiscation Act, which
embraced sixty-five specified individuals, the terms applied
not only to the lands of these persons, but their negroes and other
personal property as well. Some of these continued to live in their
native state, although the majority immediately proceeded to
Canada. Solomon Austin, however, remained in Carolina till 1794,
but in that year determined to remove his family to Upper Canada,
where General Simcoe, his old friend, was Governor. In June, 1794,
he appeared at Newark with his wife and family of nine cliildren
(four sons and five daughters). He met with a very flattering
reception, the Governor offering him a home in his own house
until he should make a selection of land. He was also offered
six hundred acres in any unselected part of the province.
The Governor directed him to inspect the country and choose
for himself. Accordingly he made a trip through the western
district on foot with his eldest son, going as far as Detroit.
Finally he chose a home on Patterson's Creek, now called the
River Lynn, about three miles south-east of Simcoe, in the
County of Norfolk. This proved to be a very pleasant and
fertile district. It is now known as Lynn Valley.
To this spot he removed with his family in the early spring of
1795, and by the end of the summer had a log cabin erected
and almost an acre of land cleared and fall wheat planted.
In the war of 1812, true to their principles of loyalty, the father
and four sons shouldered their muskets and marched under Brock to
fight the hated "Yankees', once more. They fought at Malcolm's
Mills (Oakland), Malden, and Lundy's Lane. In the Norfolk militia
two of the sons soon obtained the rank of captain. The descendants
of this family are the most numerous of any of the families
of the settlement.
Solomon, the eldest son, married Miss Sarah Slaght, and
became the father of ten children. Two of their sons were the
proprietors of the largest carriage works in the county, and
continued their business for over twenty-five years.
Another son is a Baptist minister.
Jonathan, the second son, married Miss Hannah Potts, and
had seven children. He and his son John built Austin's
mills in the Lynn Valley.
Philip, the third son, married Mary Slaght, a sister of
his eldest brother's wife, and had a family of sixteen children.
Moses, the youngest son, married Mary Wisner, of Townsend, and
had seven children.
Of the daughters, Mary, the eldest, married Henry Walker, who
is said to have been the second white child born in Norfolk County.
Amy married a man named Styles, and had fifteen children.
Esther married Raymond Potts, a U. E. Loyalist.
Elizabeth married John Pegg, who had accompanied the party
Anna married David Marr, and had nine children.
The last one of the original family to die was Philip (October
17th, 1876), in his 87th year, having lived to a greater age
than any of his brothers or sisters.
For many years previous to Philip's death an annual gathering of
children and connections was held at the old homestead on the
anniversary of his birthday. On the last gathering his direct
descendants numbered 137, while the direct descendants of the
original founder, Solomon, numbered 734.
THE Welch family is one of the most distinguished who settled in
Norfolk County. The original home of the family was in Wales,
from which country one branch moved in early times to Ireland,
and subsequently (1740) one member of the family (Francis) left
Tyrone County and emigrated to America.� Francis Welch settled
first in Philadelphia, but soon gave up his quiet life in the
city for a roving one on the sea, and during the Seven Years'
War placed his vessel at the service of Britain.
His eldest son was the Thomas Welch who settled in Long Point.
This Thomas Welch had settled in Maryland, where he followed the
profession of surveying. On the outbreak of the war of the
Revolution he joined the King's troops, and was appointed
quartermaster in one of the contingents of the Maryland
Loyalists. At the close of the war he was appointed to survey
lands for the Loyalists in New Brunswick. There he remained till
1794, when he removed to the Long Point settlement. In 1796 he
succeeded Mr. Hamlin, and finished the survey of Charlotteville.
The family name is properly spelled Welch, but towards the close
of the century it began to be written Walsh, and has continued
so to the present. The name is perpetuated in "Walsh," a small
village of Charlotteville.
Thomas Walsh (as we shall now spell the name) was appointed, in
1796, Registrar for Norfolk County. On the organization of
London District in 1798 he was further appointed Registrar of
the Surrogate Court, and Deputy Secretary for the issue of land
patents for the district. Twelve years after he became Judge of
the District and Surrogate courts, and in this same year his
son, Francis L. Walsh, was given the Registry office.
In the journals of the old court, now in the Registry office at
Simcoe, there is the following curious item: "Francis L. Walsh,
small gent., fined two shillings for swearing volubly at Henry
Slaght's two sons."
This Francis Walsh had assisted his father in the Registry
office, from the year 1808. He has the record for the longest
term of government service in Canada, and, in the belief of the
writer, the longest in the British Dominions, for he held the
position till his death in 1884.
The family have had considerable parliamentary honors. For two
terms (1821-1828, and in 1835-1836) Mr. Francis Walsh occupied a
seat in the Provincial Parliament. His son, Aquilla, represented
the North Riding of Norfolk in the Dominion House, 1861-1872.
There is no man more highly spoken of than the old Registrar. He
had always a kind smile and an encouraging word for everybody.
In the early days of the settlement he used to advise the
strangers who came to settle as to what he considered the best
lands yet untaken and often protected the unwary from the wiles
of the "land shark."� He remained till his death a faithful
government official, devoted to the duties of his office, and
to works of kindness and charity among the people he had seen
grow up before his eyes. At one time he was presented with an
oil portrait of himself and a costly silver set, as a token of
esteem and good-will, from the inhabitants of Norfolk County,
many of whom had been the recipients of his kindness. Long was
his life on the earth and great was the good he did therein.
Truly, according to the dictum of Solon, he might call his
life happy, for he had "reached the end of days ripe in years
and wisdom, and the gods had given him favor in the eyes of
0F this family name there were two distinct and yet strangely
united families, the families of two cousins, Jabez and Timothy.
Before the war of the Revolution they lived in New Jersey, and the
families were very intimate. Four of the daughters of Timothy
Culver did not require to change their name when they married,
for their husbands were the four sons of Jabez. The names of
the daughters were Anna, Elizabeth, Marian and Martha; and
the sons, Jabez, Aaron, John and Gabriel. That was surely a
strong family combination.
The first Culver family to settle in Norfolk was that of Jabez
Culver. They left New Jersey in 1793, and made the journey on
foot, arriving in the township of Townsend in March of
the next year. They are thus one of the earliest pioneer
families. Rev. Jabez Culver was an ordained Presbyterian
minister when he came to Norfolk, and by 1806 he had the
Presbyterian church of the new settlement fully organized,
though the services had to be held at his own house for many
years. The old gentleman settled in Windham, but his sons in
Jabez Culver did not take any active part against the Americans
in their struggle for independence, but Timothy Culver was in
regular service. However, he seems to have been unmolested after
the war, for he did not flee to Canada, but remained in New
Jersey till 1796.
In 1795 Mr. and Mrs. Timothy Culver walked all the way from New
Jersey to visit their daughters and sons-in-law in Norfolk County.
They were so pleased with the new district that they determined
to move there themselves, and this they did in the early spring of 1796.
The U. E. Loyalist records show the following grants of land to
the four danghters of Timothy Culver, all under date of the
Order-in-Council, 14th November, 1799:
Elizabeth, wife of Aaron Culver, two hundred acres in Townsend
Marian����� "����� John���������������� "�������������� "
Anna������� "����� Jabez��������������� "�������������� "
Martha����� "����� Gabriel������������� "������������ Walsingham
In 1795 Governor Simcoe, during his visit to Turkey Point granted
to Aaron Culver water privileges on Patterson's Creek, and a mill
was built there within the limits of the present town of Simcoe.
This mill was enlarged a few years later and became one of the
most important in the Long Point district. When the war of 1812-14
broke out, it was owned in partnership by Aaron Culver and E. Woodruff.
During "McArthur's raid" of November, 14, it shared the fate of
four other flouring mills, and was totally destroyed. In the report
of the Loyal and Patriotic Society of that year the loss of Mr. Culver
and Mr. Woodruff is mentioned to be �1751 5s.
As McArthur's Raid will be mentioned in more than one chapter,
it may be interesting to devote a few lines to a connected
statement of its course.
General McArthur had about 1,500 troops when he invaded the
province from Detroit.� He had proceeded as far as the Grand
River when, fearing troops from the east, he turned southward
and took up a position at Malcolm's Mills, now known by the
name of Oakland. The Norfolk militia commanded by Major
Salmon, marched out to attack them. The forces met on the banks
of the river which flows through Oakland. Before the engagement
the wily American sent a detachment unnoticed down the river;
hence the British troops were attacked both front and rear and
quickly routed. The battle is sadly spoken of today by the old
settlers as the "foot race."
The victorious army of McArthur then marched to Waterford, burning
the mills there-Avery's and Sovereign's. A detachment also came
through Simcoe ravaging and plundering. Thence the ravagers marched
to Lyndock, and the whole force being reunited, retreated by the
Bostwick Road to Talbot Street, and along that highway to Detroit.*
The members of the various branches of the Culver families have
always taken an important part in the affairs of the townships
in which they reside.
* For a full account the reader is referred to the official
despatch of Brigadier-General McArthur to the Secretary cf War,
18th November, 1814, published in "Documentary History of Canada,
1812-14," edited by Colonel Cruickshank. (Part II, pp. 308-312.)
0F this family there were two brothers Samuel, the elder, and Joseph.
They were descendants of an old Dutch family, and their ancestors
had held judicial appointments under Kings George II and III.� At
the opening of the Revolutionary War, Samuel Ryerse enlisted a
company of over a hundred men for the service of the king, and was
appointed captain thereof, his company being designated as the
Fourth Battalion New Jersey Volunteers.
The original spelling of the name is Ryerson, but on making out
his commission a mistake of spelling was made, and the form Ryerse
continued through sundry despatches, commissions and patents and
was finally retained by this branch of the family.
After the war the Legislature of New Jersey having confiscated
his property, he, in company with others, moved to New Brunswick
and was given a grant of land near Fredericton, being assigned
three thousand acres of the new survey.
In 1794 he took his family (for he had been married in New
Brunswick and had four children) back to Long Island, New York,
in the hope of being able to settle there, but he soon found
that the bitter hatred of the Americans for the Loyalists had not
died away in the slightest, and so determined to come back to
Canada. Before removing his family Captain Ryerse and a friend
came to this part of the country on a prospecting tour. At
Niagara he was welcomed by Lieutenant-Governor Simcoe, who promised him
a liberal grant of land, amounting in all, with that given to the
members of the family on coming of age, to over eight thousand acres.
Late in that fall he returned to New York and made preparations
to move his family the following spring. At the opening of navigation
they started in a sloop up the Hudson in company with the
family of Captain Bouta, and from Albany portaged across to
Schenectady, where they procured one of the Schenectady boats,
which have been described in a previous chapter.
In this flat-bottomed boat they made their way against the
current up the Mohawk, and thence up Wood Creek. Between the head of
navigation on Wood Creek and the Oswego river, which flows
into Lake Ontario, is a portage of ten miles, over which their
boat had to be drawn by hand on a kind of a rude waggon, the
wheels being simply slices of a round beech tree.
They skirted the southern shore of Lake Ontano to Niagara, then
up the Niagara to Queenston, from which place they had a long
and wearisome portage of nine miles till Chippawa was reached.
From that place all was smooth sailing to the Long Point district,
which they had chosen. The long journey was completed on the last
day of June, 1795.. The spot selected by Captain Ryerse was the
land surrounding a creek, towards which the forest-covered acres
sloped gently down. This was called Ryerse Creek, and the little
settlement which grew up at its mouth, Port Ryerse.
Before the fall a comfortable log-house was erected with the
help of the settlers already there, a more pretentious building than
was common, for it contained a parlor, two bedrooms a kitchen and a
garret. As there were valuable water facilities on his land, one
condition of his patent right was that he erect both a saw mill
and a grist mill. In 1797 the former was built and the latter
the following year. This milling enterprise (the flour mill)
was almost the ruin of Captain Ryerse, for he did not understand
flour milllng, and for some years no one arrived in the settlement
that could properiy manage his mill. In addition, the cost of
repair was heavy, as much of the supplies and machinery necesaary
could only be procured for cash, which was exceedingly scarce in
the Ryerse family at that time, for he had to sell part
of his land at a dollar an acre to assist in building it. The
dam broke, the machinery got out of order, bolting cloths and other
supplies were continually needed, and it was certainly a
financial loss for many years. The toll was only one bushel
in twelve, and the settlers had not much wheat to grind, what
they raised being intended solely for their own consumption.
During the summer season the mill was absolutely idle.� However,
'experientia docet', and in any case it was a very great benefit
to the little settlement, for no other mill at that time existed
nearer than at Niagara Falls, a hundred miles away.
The saw-mill, on the contrary, brought in better returns. The
machinery was simpler and less apt to get out of order, and it
did not require skilled operators. Sawn lumber was a staple article
of trade, and the toll was half the lumber sawn. The lumber found
a ready sale, not so much for cash, as for whatever the settlers had
to barter. Consequently, the saw-mill was remunerative but the
flour-mill a heavy loss.
In 1800 Capt. Ryerse was appointed his Majesty's Commissioner of the
Peace for the District of London. He was first Chairman of the courts
of Quarter Sessions, and Judge of the District and Surrogate courts.
The duties of magistrates in those days were not simply judicial.
They had to solemnize marriages, register births, bury the dead,
prescribe for the sick, and read the Church service on Sundays.
They were the judges, lawyers, doctors, ministers, and even the
dentists of the community. Virtual paragons they must have been to
have attended to the various wants of all ranks and conditions of men.
About the beginning of the century the militia of the district was
organized, and Mr. Ryerse was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel of
Militia. The regiment used to meet annually on the 4th June,
the King's Birthday, for training. It was a motley company, the
majority being big slouching, round-shouldered young men, armed
with old flint-lock muskets. These could be easily distinguished from
the few spruce, upright and military-looking soldiers who had served
a quarter of a century before in the war of American Independence.
In 1804, the log-house mentioned was burned, having caught fire
from the rudely constructed chimney, and all the books and keepsakes,
articles of plate and bric-a-brac, brought from New York and prized
beyond all price, were burned. For some time thereafter the family
lived in the house of the miller who managed the grist mill for Mr. Ryerse.
The later years of Mr. Ryerse's life were spent in the weakness
of failing health.� That dread disease consumption had laid its
icy fingers on a constitution never too strong. In 1810 he was
compelled to resign the military and political offices he held,
and in June, 1812, passed away at the age of sixty. He was buried
in the little plot of ground on which was afterwards erected a
church (as he had designed) to mark his resting-place.
The mills and property of Mr. Ryerse were destroyed in the war
of 1812. On the 14th of May, 1814, an American force crossed Lake
Erie, and, after plundering and burning the town of Dover, marched
along the Lake Shore to Port Ryerse.� When it appeared there Mrs.
Ryerse entreated the officer in command to spare her property,
for she was a widow and defenceless. But she only succeeded in saving
her house. The mills and all other buildings were remorselessly
given to the flames. The excuse argued was that the buildings had been
used as a barracks and the mills had furnished flour to British
troops. The militia of the district, under Colonel Talbot, was near
Brantford at the time, and in his unfortunate absence the labors
of the late Captain Ryerse were destroyed.*
* Vide infra Chapter XLI
THE McCalls were of a Scottish clan from Argyleshire. Donald McCall
came to America in the year 1756 with the regular British troops
who were sent over against the French at the beginning of the
Seven Years' War. He was a private in Montgomery's Highlanders,
and took part in the capture of Louisburg in 1758, and served
also under Wolfe at the battle of the Plains of Abraham and the
taking of Quebec. With a detachment of his regiment he was afterwards
sent up the lakes. From the Niagara River the party came along the north
shore of Lake Erie in batteaux, and when near Turkey Point had an
encounter with a party of French and indians. Their enemies fired at
them from the shelter of the woods, but the plucky Highlanders
promptly ran their boats ashore, defeated and chased them inland as
far as where the village of Waterford now stands. On their way
back they encamped for the night on what is now lot 18 of the 4th
concession of the township of Charlotteville, near the present
residence of Simpson McCall.� In the morning the soldiers
improvised some fishing tackle, and in a short time had caught out of
Young's Creek all the speckled trout the party could eat.
In 1763, after the treaty of Paris, being discharged on the breaking
up of his regiment, he settled in the State of New Jersey, where he
lived till the breaking out of the Revolutionary War. He immediately
joined the King's Regiment, aud did not retire from military
life till after the surrender of Yorktown.
When he returned to his New Jersey home he soon found that he was
regarded as an alien and shunned by his neighbors. Not caring
to remain, in 1783 he made his way to New Brunswick and settled
on a small allotment there.
lu 1796 a party from New Brunswick, led by Donald McCall, came
west to the Long Point settlement. He was selected as the leader
because he had previously visited the country. Among the party
were the loyalists Lieut. Jas. Munro and Peter Fairchild. They
landed at the mouth of Big Creek on July 1st, 1796, and took, up
land in various localities.
The old leader, remembering his adventures with the French
and Indians, and the episode of the speckled trout fishing alluded
to above, made his way inland to the identical spot where the camp
fires of his Higland regiment had been lighted forty years before.
His family consisted at that time of five sons and three
daughters- John, Duncan, Daniel, James and Hugh, and Catherine,
Elizabeth and Mary. Duncan, being already married, settled near his
father, on Lot 23 of the 5th concession. On the 26th July, 1796,
a son was born to him, the first white child born in the county
of Norfolk. This child (Daniel) served afterwards in the War of
1812, taking part in the Battle of Lundy's Lane and in a skirmish
at Malcolm's Hollow (Oakland), where the British were outnumbered
and driven back by General McArthur. Until his death he received
the pension voted by Parliament to the veterans of 1812. Duncan McCall,
his father, was elected to the Upper Canada Parliament, and remained
a member till his death in 1838.
In this connection mention must be made of Simpson McCall, also
a grandson of the original founder. This gentleman now resides
on the lot which his grandfather chose. His father, James McCall,
was a lieutenant during the War of 1812. Mr. Simpson McCall was born
in 1807 and died in 1898, at the ripe old age of ninety-one. He
had also the singular honor of attending for some time the District
School of Dr. Egerton Ryerson, late Superintendent of Education of
Ontario.� For thirty-four years he was Postmaster at Vittoria
(1834-68), and in connection therewith had a general store. For
four years he was Warden, of the County, and has been a justice
of the peace since 1845. He was elected a member of Parliament
in 1867, and held the position for two terms. He was an Independent
in politics, though he inclined to the support of the Conservative party.
In the respect and veneration of the whole community, Mr. McCall
in his old age received his reward for the sterling honesty
which was the predominant feature of his whole life, and the
unflinching justice and impartiality which were his most notable
traits of character.
LIEUTENANT MUNRO was one of the chief members of the McCall party
which came to Long Point in 1796. He settled in the township of
Charlotteville, three miles west of the village of Vittoria.
Being a man of considerable means, he built the best house which
had been erected up to that time. It stands today, a disused
relic, about half a mile back from the road running straight
west from Vittoria. It is a two-storey frame house of considerable
size. The frame of hewn timber was made so strong that it seems
even yet able to defy the storms for another century. The bents
are four feet apart, strengthened by tie girths, morticed and
tendoned-a marvel of axeman's skill.
The planks for the floors and sheeting were cut out by the
"whip" saw; and there must have been many a bee to accomplish
the tremendous task of providing sawn lumber for so large a
dwelling. The floors of this old building are almost worn
through with the wear of many feet for nearly a century.
The writer was assured that it is the original roof which is on
the building at the present time. The shingles are of cedar,
rudely whittled by the draw-knife, and show in places an
original thickness of over an inch.
In the main room is the immense fire-place, built of rude stone,
occupying in itself almost space enough for a modern sleeping
chamber, in which many a back log of oak or walnut five feet long and
two feet through roared and hissed and sputtered in the early
years of the century.
This building is notable for another reason, namely, because
it was used as the court-house of the district for two years,
1800-1802, for it was not until the latter date that the court
was removed to Turkey Point. This was the only building in all
London District that was capable of accommodating the court.
The first court was organized in April, 1800, the first
commission of magistrates being as follows: Peter Teeple, John
Beemer, William Spurgin, Wynant Williams, and Captain Samuel
Ryerse; to which two others were afterwards added, Captain
William Hutchison and Major John Backhouse. Colonel Joseph Ryerson
was the first sheriff and Thomas Welch the first clerk of the court.
The old journal of the court, containing the minutes of the meetings
between the years 1800-1812, was found some time ago in a heap of
rubbish. It is preserved to-day in the Norfolk archives in Simcoe.
A temporary jail was erected near the house, a log building, 14 x 25
feet, divided into two rooms, one for debtors and the other for
those charged with criminal offences.� Lieutenant Munroe was to act
as jailer, his stipend being $100 per annum. It was agreed that
as soon as a permanent court-house and jail were erected elsewhere,
that Mr. Munroe should buy back this building at a fair and just price.
This building was erected during the winter of 1800, by day labor, and
was used for nearly a year, until the courts were removed to Turkey Point.
Lieutenant Muuro was a son-in-law of Donald McCall, having
married Catherine, the eldest daughter, before coming to Long
Point. His family cousisted of two sons, Robert and Daniel, and one
The U. E. Loyalist records show the following grants of land
to his daughters:
Amelia Sophia Munro, spinster, two hundred acres in Walsingham,
23rd December, 1815.
Charlotte Dustin, wife of Paul Dustin, two hundred acres in
Walsingham, 23rd December, 1815.
Harriet Ann Gillaspy, wife of William Gillaspy, two hundred
acres in Walsingham, 23rd December, 1815.
Mary Green, wife of Jeremiah Green, two hundred acres in Townsend,
23rd December, 1815.
Among the descendants of Lieutenant Munro was J. H. Munro, Esq.,
member of Parliament at Confederation, who remained in the
House of Commons till 1872. His brother, Malcolm Munro, was
a member of the Local Legislature for about the same time.
The Munro family are connected with the Wood, Smith, Jewell,
Smalley, Wilson and Tisdale families of Norfolk County.
ONE of the most distinguished Loyalists who settled at Long Point
was Sergt. Daniel Hazen. The grand ancestor of the American
Hazens was Edward Hazen, who emigrated to Massachusetts in
1648 from Northamptonshire England. In the year following,
his wife died and was buried at Rowley, a small village in
that state.� In 1650 he was married to Hannah Grant, and their
eldest son was Thomas, born in 1657.
The town records of Rowley, Massachusetts, prove that Edward Hazen
was a man of substance and influence in his day. He was appointed
Overseer or Select-man in 1650, '51, '54, '60, '65, and '69, and
Judge of Delinquents in 1666. On his death, in 1683, his estate was
inventoried at �404 7s 6d. a considerable sum in those days.
The writer will trace in the family history that branch only in
which the Long Point Loyalists are interested.
John, the eldest son of Thomas Hazen, married Mercy Bradstreet,
the granddaughter of Governor Bradstreet. One of their sons was
Daniel, while his eldest son was the Daniel Hazen who afterwards
settled at Long Point. Daniel,jun., was born on the 10th of August,
1755. When he was twelve years old his father removed to New
Jersey, and the family became prominent in that State as formerly in
Daniel had just come of age when the Declaration of Independence
was signed. On the outbreak of hostilities, with all the ardor of a
native-born Englishman, he joined the King's army, and so distinguished
himself that he was appointed sergeant in Barlowe's regiment of the
New Jersey Volunteers.� On several occasions he was entrusted with
important commissions, which he so discharged as to bring him into
constantly increasing popularity with his superior officers, for
he was a man to be depended on, and though wary and cautious, as
bold as a lion in open fight.
Until the outbreak of the war he had been employed in a surveyor's
office, and had become very skilful and accurate in that
profession. At the close of the war, with his young wife (Anna
Ward), he moved to New Brunswick, and was appointed by the
Government to survey lands along the St. John's River, for the
Loyalists who were coming in crowds to that province. Sergeant
Hazen received, among the rest, a large grant of land on that
river, and lived there for about eight years; but being filled
with the desire to explore western Canada, he left New Brunswick
in 1792, and settled in the new Province of Ontario, first in
Brant and afterwards in Chippawa, in the Niagara district.
During the summer of 1796 the Hon. Peter Russell, acting
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province, sent Sergeant Hazen and a
Mr. Hamlin to survey the townships of Charlotteville and
Walsingham in Norfolk County. Charlotteville was surveyed by
Mr. Hamlin and his successor, Mr. Welch, but Sergeant Hazen by
himself completed the whole survey of Walsingham.
In surveying land the first line run is called the base line.
Then others are drawn parallel to it. In Walsingham these are two and
a quarter miles apart with an allowance in each case of
sixty-six feet for a road. In this township there are three of
these, the boundary lines not being known as "base lines." The
township is therefore nine miles wide. At right angles to these
were roads called the concessions, and numbered 1, 2, 3, 4,
etc. There are fourteen of these in Walsingham, at a distance of
five-sixths of a mile apart, the fourteenth concession being one
mile wide. There are, therefore, six allotments of two hundred
acres between the side lines, or twenty-four farms to each
concession, the size of the farms being five-sixths of a mile
by one hundred and twenty rods. The roads were simply marked.
Many were not opened out for years after the survey, and some,
indeed, are still "blind roads."
Sergeant Hazen was very particular about having absolutely pure
water for the use of his family. During the survey he came to a
lovely little stream, where the water fell in rippling sparkles
over the rocks, like Horace's "fons Bandusia, slendidior vitro".
As he saw it, and examined the land on either side, he
exclaimed, "Here will I live, and here will I be buried!"
Accordingly he determined to remove from Chippawa, and in 1797
he received a large grant of land in Walsingham, the allotment
that he had chosen for himself. He had six sons and two
daughters, who received from the Government the following grants
of land.� The entries are taken from the records of the Crown
"Daniel, jun., yeoman, son of Daniel Hazen, Order-in-Council
19th December, 1806, two hundred acres in Woodhouse.
"Lydia, spinster, daughter of Daniel Hazen, Order-in-Council
29th July, 1806, two hundred acres in Walsingham.
William, yeoman, son of Daniel Hazen, Order-in-Council 5th
August, 1807, two hundred acres in Walsingham.
"John, yeoman, son of Daniel Hazen, Order-in-Council 13th
October, 1812, two hundred in Walsingham.
"Rachael, spinster, daughter of Daniel Hazen, Order-in-Council
13th October, 1812, two hundred acres in Walsingham.
"Anna Hazen, wife of Daniel Hazen, jun., and daughter of James
Matthews, a U. E. Loyalist, Order-in-Council 19th December,
1806, two hundred acres in Woodhouse."
There were also the two youngest sons, Caleb and Elijah.� Elijah
was the carrier of His Majesty's mail from Vitteria to Port Rowan,
for which he was allowed seventy-five cents per week. This gives one
an idea of the value and scarcity of money in the early times, eight
shillings York currency being the ordinary price of an acre of ground.
Sergeant Hazen was a very large man, tall and powerfully built.
He is described as a man of exceedingly good humor, with a kind word
for every one. He was a man of strong religious conviction, and a
prominent member of the original Woodhouse Methodist Church,
organized by Daniel Freeman. He attended service every Sunday,
though it meant for him a walk of over twenty miles through the
woods. When the regular minister was absent, Sergeant Daniel would
officiate himself, and his words were always acceptable to the
The old Sergeant, on the outbreak of the war in 1812, promptly
took up arms in defence of Canada, and served for the three
years.� Fortunately no accident happened him, and at its close
he settled down to peaceful life once more at his home in Walsingham,
called "Hazen's Corners."
In 1824 he was a candidate for election to the Provincial Parliment.
There were three days of open voting.� Unfortunately, although almost
every vote in Walsingham was cast for him, the opposition in the
other parts of the county was too strong, and he was not elected.
Such was the life of the original surveyor of Walsingham as related
by his grandson, Jacob W. Hazen, of Tilsonburg, now in his sixty-sixth
year, an extremely interesting and entertaining host. The writer was
shown several relics of his grandfather, notably the sword which
did duty in the Revolutionary War, the musket used in 1812, the
epaulettes of his uniform, and the Bible which was carried constantly
through the latter war, also many of his papers, sketches of
places, and maps of surveys. In many places the writing is
indistinguishable, but the sketches show extreme neatness and care.
The Hazens may well be proud of their good old Loyalist ancester.
DURING the war of the Revolution Thomas Bowlby became a volunteer
in Captain Thomas's Company of the New Jersey Volunteers. For some
years after the war, however, he remained in New Jersey. During
the summer of 1797 he, his wife and young son, with their goods
in a waggon, made the long journey to Long Point and settled in
Woodhouse, on a grant of four hundred acres of land.
Mr. Bowlby was a man of considerable influence in Norfolk county,
and a prominent member of the Masonic order. In this connection the
following story is told.
In November, 1814, General McArthur, during his famous raid, having
burned the mills at Simcoe, Oakland and Waterford, was marching
westward to Vittoria, where he intended to burn the Russell mill.
However, the news that General McArthur was a Mason rapidly spread
over the country, and the people of Vittoria, to whom their mill
was of more value than a gold mine, urged Thomas Bowlby, the
head of the Masonic lodge of that place, to go to meet the
General and beg him to spare the mill. This he did, and with a
white kerchief on the end of a stick he met the American
cavalry at the top of the hill which overlooks Vittoria, and
urged McArthur to spare the mill, appealing to him as a member
of the Masonic order. To this the General consented, and
though his troops murmured mightily at the "tender-heartedness"
of their General, he marched them straight through the town
without allowing one to leave the ranks. Truly the power of
Masonic duty was as strong in those early days as in these.*
The writer is indebted to Mr. T. W. Dobbie, surveyor, of
Tilsonburg, for this account of his maternal grandfather.
* Vede also Owen, "Pioneer Sketches," pp. 351-352.
ANOTHER noted man in the history of this settlement was Daniel
Freeman. He had lived during the war in New Jersey, remaining
loyal to England, though not taking part in actual hostilities.
Always of a deeply religious nature he was created by the
Methodist Episcopal Church of the United States, first an
exhorter, next a licentiate, and finally a regularly appointed
minister. It may be remarked that he is credited with having preached
the first evangelical sermon ever delivered in the city of Detroit.
However, in the year 1798 he came to Long Point country, and
became the foundor of the first Methodist society in this district.
The Government granted him lot 24 of the 4th concession of
Charlotteville, and there he established his new home.
As soon as he was settled he set earnestly to work to organize
class meetings, which have always been the distinctive mark of
the Methodist Church.
His work prospered, the people of the little colony came willingly
to hear him, and in the third year of the century the settlers decided
that a regular meeting-house or chapel was necessary, and they
immediately proceeded to erect the first Methodist church in the county.
It was situated in Woodhouse township and is called the Woodhouse
Methodist Church. It was a log church, forty foot long and thirty-four
feet wide, and about fifteen high. The church was quickly completed,
and never did the Methodist people of any part of the world
worship God in truer sincerity under gilded dome, than did the
congregation of half a hundred in that little log meeting-house in
the centre of the forest.
No doubt the silent grandeur of the lofty beech and maple, the
oak and walnut trees, with their branches spreading like the
cedars of Lebanon, the green sward stretching like folds of the
richest velvet among the trees, the blue sky and the singing
birds, and all the beauties of nature surrounding their little
chapel would awaken in their minds feelings of veneration and
reverence for the great God who has measured the waters in the
hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with a span, and
comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed
the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance. The minds
of the earlier settlers, trained by habit to meditation in the forest,
naturally found this a fit place for contemplation and worship.
The second church was a frame building (1818); the third a
handsome brick structure, which now stands on the identical site
of the first church in the Long Point district.
TITUS FINCH joined the Royal Standard shortly after the
Declaration of Independence, and continued in the service till
the close of the war. In 1784 he landed in Halifax with other
Loyalists, and built a home for himself about forty miles west
of that city.
Mr. Finch was a very religious man, and feeling himself called
to the ministry, was ordained, and preached on the Sabbath to
his friends and neighbors in their new home.
In 1798 he removed to Long Point, obtaining from the Government a
grant of six hundred acres of land on the fourth concession of
Charlotteville. He and his son built a grist mill near Port
Ryerse. This mill was burned on the 15th May, 1814, by Americans
who came across Lake Erie in six schooners. No sooner had
they left, however, than plans for a new mill were got ready,
and in less than two months everything was completed, and in
operation again. In the Government satisfaction for damages Mr.
Finch received �265, or one-half the value of the former mill.*
Following the example of the apostle Paul, who "worked at his
trade," six days in the week, "Elder" Finch labored on the farm
or in the mill, and on the seventh he preached the Gospel. In 1804 he
organized the first Baptist Church in London District, and
remained as its minister till his death, in 1821.
*Despatch from Lieutenant-General Drummond to Sir George Prevost
("Documentary History of Canada," Part I, p. 16)
"Kingston, May 31st, 1814.
"SIR,-I have the honor to transmit herewith for your Excellency's
information the deposition of Mr. Mathias Steele, of Woodhouse,
who was on the spot at the time the enemy landed there on the 14th inst.,
and which I feel satisfied is correct."
"Personally appeared before me, the Hon. Richard Cartwright, one of
His Majesty's Justices assigned to keep the peace in and for the said
district, Mathias Steele, of Woodhouse, gentleman, who, being duly
sworn on the Holy Evangelists, saith, 'That on Saturday, the fourteenth
of the present month, an American force, computed at about eight
hundred men, and consisting of regulars, militia and seamen, under
the command of Colonel Campbell, disembarked at the mouth of Patterson's
creek from six schooners, where they encamped for the night. That having
met with no opposition, they, on the following morning, advanced and
took possession of the Village of Dover, and having plundered the houses
of all the inhabitants and carried off all their provisions, set fire
to the village and entirely destroyed it. They then proceeded to
Ryerson's mills, situated a little farther up the lake, and set fire
to them with several other buildings; and proceeding still farther up
the lake, destroyed another set of mills belonging to Mr. Finch.
He further deposeth and saith, that to the best of his knowledge
and belief they destroyed altogether twenty dwelling houses, three
flour mills, three saw mills, three distilleries, twelve barns, and
a number of other buildings. He further deposeth and saith, that
they shot all the cows and hogs that they could find, leaving them
to rot on the ground. And further, that on the said Colonel Campbell
being asked the reason of this wanton and barbarous conduct, where
he had met with no opposition, he answered that it was done
in retaliation for the burning of Havre de Grace, Buffalo and
Lewiston, and further this deponent saith not."
"Sworn before me at Kingston, this 31st day of May, 1814.
������������������������������������������������ "RICHARD CARTWRIGHT, J. P.
THE Tisdales are one of the most noted families of Norfolk County.
They are the descendants of an old Welsh family of considerable
prominence in Britain in the seventeenth century. About 1700
a branch of the family came to America, and settled in Freetown,
Massachusetts. For some time before the war Ephraim Tisdale was
the owner and captain of a vessel engaged in trade to the West Indies.
When the colonies declared war against Britain, Captain Tisdale
placed his boat at the service of the king, and he was engaged to
distribute supplies at various points on the Atlantic coast.
Colonel Sabine in his book on "Loyalists of the American Revolution"
(Vol. II., p. 357) has this interesting note: "During the war, while on
a voyage to St. Augustine, Ephraim Tisdale abandoned his vessel at sea
to avoid capture, and gained the shore in safety. Though nearly
destitute of money, he accomplished an overland journey to New York, a
distance, by the route that he travelled, of fifteen hundred miles. In
1783 he embarked at New York for New Brunswick on the ship Brothers,
Captain Walker, and on the passage his wife gave birth to a son, who
was named after the master of the ship."
Mr. Tisdale and bis family (eight sons and four daughters) settled
on lands allotted to them at Waterbury in New Brunswick. This is on
the St. John River, between St John and Fredericton. Here they all
lived together till 1798, when Lot, the second son, came to the Long
Point settlement, and was assigned land in Charlotteville. He was
greatly delighted with his new home, and wrote many letters
to New Brunswick urging his father and brothers to come west.
In 1801 Lot paid a visit to New Brunswick, and returned the same
year with two brothers, William and Ephraim, and his sister Hannah
(Mrs. Perley). In the following year another brother, Joseph, made
his way to Long Point, and in 1808 three other brothers and Mr. and
Mrs. Ephraim Tisdale, sen. The old gentleman lived for eight years in
the new home.
Four of the Tisdale brothers, together with Benjamin Mead, formed
in 1810 a business partnership, and built a large store in Vittoria.
Their enterprise prospered, and in a short time they were regarded
as well-to-do men.
True to his loyalist instincts, Mr. Ephraim Tisdale, jun.,
fought in the war of 1812, and in this connection the following
incident is told:
In 1814 a body of American militia, 150 strong, the scum of the
troops, came across Lake Erie for the purpose of plundering and
burning. They had marched from Dover to the mills of Titus
Finch, at the place since known as Cross and Fisher's Landing,
and burned them. Thence they were proceeding to Turkey Point
to destroy the district courthouse, which was then standing on
the bank near where the road now leads down the hill which
overlooks Turkey Point. When near Normandale (four miles
from Turkey Point) they were attacked by a body of twenty eight
irregular volunteers armed with fowlmg pieces and rifles and
driven back to their boats. The volunteers one of whom was the
elder Mr. Tisdale, ran through the woods to the bank of the lake to
cut off their retreat. They were too late to prevent the enemy from
embarking, but killed an officer and fourteen of the men. The enemy
immediately set sail for Turkey Point; but when a short distance
from shore discovered the redcoats of a party of troops, which had just
arrived to reinforce the volunteers, and, not caring to risk an encounter,
forthwith put the helm hard around and made away for the end of Long Point
and thence across to the place "from whence they came."
In the rebellion of 1837, Ephraim Tisdale, jun., served for two years
as sergeant in a troop of cavalry, and during that period was at the
Niagara frontier when the steamer Caroline was cut out and burned.
He was one of those engaged in that exploit. Subsequently to
1837, he held a captain's commission in the Militia. He was also a
justice of the peace for over twenty-five years.
Among the descendants of Ephraim Tisdale is the well-known
ex-Minister of Militia, Colonel David Tisdale, M.P. for South Norfolk.
THE Berdan family were prominent land owners in New Jersey.
On the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, Albert Berdan enlisted in
the New Jersey volunteers, and was appointed sergeant in the 2nd
battalion. On the conclusion of peace he settled in New Brunswick,
where he remained till 1798. In that year he came west, settling in
the township of Woodhouse. He and his family received allotments,
partly in Woodhouse and partly in Charlotteville.
When the Courts of Quarter Sessions were organized in 1800, and
the first session held in April, at the house of Lieut. James
Munro, Albert Berdan was sworn in as the first constable of Woodhouse,
and was also appointed the first Court Crier. An item in the
court journal for the spring term of 1801 states that Albert
Berdan was indicted for swearing in the presence of one of the
jurymen, Lucas Dedrick. But this seems to have been quite common
in those days, for in the same session two other prominent men
were fined for the same offence. Moreover, in the fall session
of the same year, Mr. Berdan was again indicted, this time not
only for profane language, but for aggravated assault, for we
read: "AIbert Berdan, fined �5, Halifax currency, for assault
and battery." In fact, the great majority of offences that were
brought into court in those early days were for assault or
abusive language. There are very few instances of theft.
WILLIAM COPE was born on Long Island, the first year of the Seven
Years' War. In the Revolutionary War he was a private in the
Royal Regiment, New York.
After the war he remained for about ten years in New York State,
but in 1794 removed to the Niagara District, and four years
later to Norfolk County, settling on the lake front of Walsingham,
called for many years Cope's Landing. The old pioneer died in 1813.
His eldest son, Jacob, was one of those wounded in the battle
of Lundy's Lane.
The descendants of the family live in and around the village of
St. Williams, a border town between Walsingham and Charlotteville.
JOSEPH, younger brother of Samuel by nine years, was born in
New Jersey at a town called Paterson, on the 28th February, 1761.
At the outbreak of the war of American Independence he entered the
army in 1776 as a cadet. Being for some time too small to handle a
musket, he used a light fowling piece. About the close of that year, Sir
Peter Parker and Sir Henry Clinton called for volunteers to form
a light infantry corps, to go south for the purpose of besieging
Charlston.� Joseph is mentioned by Col. Sabine as being one of the
550 volunteers for this campaign.� When Col. Ennis, the recruiting
officer for this expedition, came to Joseph Ryerson, he told him that
he was too small to go; but the boy replied that he was growing older
and stouter every day, and the colonel, pleased at the lad's ready
answer, accepted him.
The service was hard and dangerous, and scarcely a sixth of the
force returned, Joseph being one of the eighty six who got safely
back to the Northern States after the unsuccessful siege. After
this, the light infantry corps was dispersed, and the men who remained
were returned to the regiments from which they had volunteered.
In 1778 he was made an ensign in the Prince of Wales Regiment.
This honor was conferred on him in recognition of his services
in the bearing of dispatches from Charleston to a point 196
miles in the interior. In the course of this he had many narrow
escapes. One story is related by Peter Rodner, who had served
in the same division, and remained, till death, his faithful
and intimate friend.
He says that on one occasion Ryerson was sent on a scouting expedition
and was rash enough to crawl up to a tent of American officers,
when he was discovered by one standing in the door, but determining
to save himself by an act of unparalleled intrepidity, walked boldly up,
and, drawing his bayonet, plunged it through the heart of the
hesitating officer and escaped before the startled Americans could give
pursuit. He also mentions that Ensign Ryerson was one of the
most determined men he ever knew, and with the service of his
country uppermost in his mind, often exposed himself to great
dangers for the accomplishment of his purposes.
In the following year he was promoted to a lieutenancy in the
same regiment, in recognition of the courage which he showed
in the beariug of special despatches by sea to the north, having
eluded the enemy many times and repulsed them frequently at
great odds.� He was in six battles and several minor encounters,
and once wounded.
In 1783 he went to New Brunswick, being assigned lands at
Majorville, on the St. John. There he remained till 1799, when
he removed to Upper Canada and settled in the township of Charlotteville.
In Canada, he held in succession the military offices of
captain of the militia, major, and afterwards colonel.
In 1800 he was made a member of the first commission of
magistrates, and was for some years chairman of the Courts of
Quarter Sessions. In that same year he was appointed high
sherrif of London District, which position he held for about
five years. He held also the position of Treasurer of London
District for eight years.
True to his loyalty to the British crown whenever danger
threatened, in the war of 1812 he again shouldered his musket,
and, together with three of his sons (George, Wi]liam and
John), remained in active service to the end of the war.
He seems to have been of a stronger constitution than his
brother Samuel, and to have remained healthy aud vigorous
throughout his life. The Colonel lived till 1854 and was probably
the last of the original U. E. loyalists who joined the Royal
Standard in 1776. His descendauts, who live at the present time,
have inherited his pluck and perseverauce, unswerving loyalty to
the Crown, and unsullied faith in the glorious destiny of the
land for which their distinguished ancestor fought so long and
The families of the two brothers, Samuel Ryerse and Ryerson are
connected by intermarriage with some of the best families of the
Province. The circle of connection is very wide, including, among
others, the Austin, Barett, Lee, Stirling, Wilson, Burch, Freeman,
Williams, Bostwick (the late Colonel Bostwick, of Port Stanley, was
a son in law of Joseph Ryerson), Wyatt, Rolph, Hazen, Mitchel,
Clark and McMichael families.
JUST before the war there settled in New Jersey a Scotch family
of the name of Anderson.� On the declaration of the hostillties
they declared themselves on the side of the King, and enrolled
themselves in the New Jersey volunteers. One of the family,
Walter, rose to the rank of captain. His true British bravery,
his sharp wit and clever repartee commanded the admiration and
respect of the men of his company.� He had an extraordinarily
versatile nature, aud at night around the camp-fire he was the
popular entertainer, spinning off by the hour romantic stories
with exceedingly dramatic execution.
About the close of the war he was one of the Loyalists who took
refuge in Ward's blockhouse on Long Island. In that place they
were besieged by the Americans; but, before a surrender was
made, he and a comrade named Henry Bush, escaped by night across
the ice to the mainland of Connecticut. In this State they were,
however, in exceedingly dangerous territory, for Captain Anderson
was one of the persons who were designated by name, and in a certain
posted order were required by the Executive Council to surrender
themselves to some judge of a court or justice of the peace
within a specified time and abide trial for treason, or, in
default of appearance, to stand attainted.
It is needless to say that these men were very far from trusting
themselves to the tender mercies of the Executive Council of
Connecticut, and a plan of escape was soon concocted in the
fertile brain of Anderson. They assumed the role of a pair of
itinerant evangelists, a Moody and Sankey, or Crossley and
Hunter, of the last century. It seems that Bush could sing very
acceptably. His rich, melodious voice would ring out in
sonorous tones over the rows of New Englanders in the log
meeting-houses in such affecting strains as:
"We'll drive the devil around a stump,
We're marching on to glory;
And hit him a thump at every jump,
We're on our journey home."
Nor was Anderson less talented on his side. Clothed in a rusty
black coat reaching to his knees, his beard shaved off, with the
exception of a most sanctimonious looking pair of side whiskers,
his shoulders bowed beneath the burden of the woes of wretched
humanity or the ponderous Bible which he carried so carefully
under his arm, with a voice tremulous with emotion he would
plead with the people to accept the offer of salvation. Anon, in
firmer tones, he would relate such familiar tales as that of
the good Samaritan or the rich man and Lazarus, and draw moral
lessons therefrom.� As he proceeded, we are told that he would
work himself into a paroxysm of rage as, on the basis of: "Woe
unto thee Chorazin, woe unto thee Bethsaida," he would
proclaim the vengeance of a justly angry God on account of the
wickedness of the country in general, and the ill-fated remnant
of loyalist English in particular; and the barbarous atrocities
of the Six Nation Indians at Wyoming. His eyes would glow, his
mouth quiver, his heart throb, his breast heave, and his
finger-nails dig into the palms of his hand, as in a fervor of
religions frenzy he prayed high heaven to send the red
archangel with the two-edged sword of flame to separate the sheep
from the goats, and the dire deceivers from those that were true.
Thus they held one meeting each day at early candle-lighting
in all the school-houses and chapels in a comparatively
straight line between the southern and northern boundaries of
the State. Once safely out of Connecticut they struck with unclerical
haste for the military high road, which ran along the west shore of lake
Champlain. In a flatbottomed boat they rowed themselves the
whole length of the Upper St. lawrence and of Lake Ontario, and
settled in the Niagara district.
Captain Anderson's family made their way to him as soon as possible,
and for about thirteen years they lived in the County of Lincoln.
In 1799 they moved to the Long Point settlement, having received
land in Charlotteville.
The old Captain died from injuries received by falling from a roof
in 1810.� "Full of years and honors", he passed away, leaving to his
five sons and two daughters a name to be respected and honored
as long as the lamp of patriotism sheds light on the deeds of men.
JOSIAH GILBERT, of New Jersey, was a corporal in the King's American
Regiment. In company with a man named Pearlie he acted as a spy in
the War of the Revolution. After peace was concluded he came
under the penalties of the same acts passed by the legislature of
New Jersey, as have been detailed in Chapter V., and his escape from
his native state was almost as dramatic as that of Abraham Smith.
Late in October, 1783, a body of troops came to his house
seeking him, and Gilbert had barely time to leap on his horse
and get well away. But he had not gone far when the shouts of
his pursuers, also mounted, fell on his ear. The race for
freedom was an exciting one, but Gilbert managed to maintain his
lead. His pursuers hoped to catch him at the river Alleghany,
never thinking that he would venture to cross it. But the brave
man, throwing himself from his horse, rolled a small cedar log
into the water, and with his left arm round it for support,
attempted to steer himself with the other to the opposite shore.
By the time the Americans reached the river, he was nearly two
hundred yards from the bank he had left, although it was only with
extreme difficulty that he was making his way slowly across.
Forthwith, the sergeant commanded his men to open fire upon the
swimmer, and the unremitting sharpshooting was kept up as long as
Gilbert was within range. The arm which encircled the log was shot in the
fleshy part, but by good fortune the bone was not splintered, and he
was enabled to still cling to his support. The log itself received
many balls, but by keeping it between himself and the enemy his
head was protected until he was out of range, ana the disappointed
troopers had to return gloomily home.
The corporal made his way to New Brunswick, where he remained till
1799. In that year he came to the Long Point country settling in
the township of Woodhouse. In the war of 1812 he was appointed
captain of a local body of volunteers, and again nobly proved
his loyalty to Britain.
Some of his descendants live at the present time near Springford
in North Norwich, and some in Dereham. A grandson, John Gilbert,
aged eighty-nine, is yet living in Dereham, and also the eldest
sister of John Gilbert, a Mrs. Mahoney, at the ripe old
age of ninety-two. One of the sons of John Gilbert is called
Josiah, after his noted ancestor.
MANY Loyalists of this name distinguished themselves in the war
of American Independence. George and James Johnson served as
junior officers in the Royal Regiment, New York. Sir John
Johnson was Lieutenant-Colonel, and William, a captain in the
King's Loyal Regiment. Jonas Johnson was a soldier in the noted
Butler's Rangers, and another, James, a trooper in Jessup's Brigade.
But one only of the name settled in Norfolk County, to wit,
Lawrence Johnson. He had served as a corporal in Colonel
Robinson's regiment. When taken prisoner in one of the countless
skirmishes of the war, Colonel Livingstone, the Commander of the
American squadron, sent the prisoner to the President of
Pennsylvania with the message: "Lawrence Johnson is an impudent,
determined villain, undoubtedly in the service of the enemy.
If you examine him, you will find him to be one of the greatest
liars you have ever met."
With such a testimonial as this, the governor was graciously pleased
to entertain the unfortunate Johnson in one of the strongholds
of the capital, and the loyalist remained the guest of the
governor till the end of the war.
At the conclusion of hostillties, Johnson was told to leave the
country, and, glad enough to be out of prison, promptly went
to New Brunswick in the spring of 1784. For fifteen years he
remained in that province, that is, until 1799, when he removed
to Long Point.
He is described as a tall, spare man, of considerable physical
strength and great powers of endurance, sharp-witted, clever
with his tongue, and of remarkable power of rapid decision in
emergencies. He was a pioneer Baptist and one of the original
members of Titus Finch's church.
IN the war of American Independence, Peter Montross, sen., had
been a soldier in the Loyal American Regiment, and at the close
of the war settled in New Brunswick.
In 1799 his three sons, Levy, Silas and Peter, and their three
sisters, came west to Long Point, settling in Charlotteville near
the lake. They each received from the Government two hundred acres
in Charlotteville, under date of Order-in-Council 17th February, 1802.
(The allotment of Silas was Lot 20 of the 1st concession, near
The wife of Silas Montross was Sarah, daughter of Frederick Maby.
She received one of the first grants of land given in that
section, the entry being the third on page 1, folio I. of the
Docket Book for warrants of survey to U. E. Loyalists and
The various sons of Silas Montross also received free land. Evidently
both the father, Peter Montross, and son Silas, were in active
service in the Revolutionary War, for Silas is mentioued also in
the list of the Loyal American Regiment; but at the time of the
war he must have been very young.
Silas built a distillery at a place called Cross and Fisher's
Landing (Old Newport), now known as the "Glen." In 1814 the
crews of the six American schooners, who burned the mill of
Titus Finch, burned two houses and a barn belonging to Mr.
Montross, aud looted this distillery of forty barrels of
whiskey. When peace was restored, he was given by the Goverument
�235 11s this being 50 per cent of the assessed value of his loss.
DANIAL MILLARD was a corporal in the 85th Regiment. In 1786 he came
to Niagara. The entry "Daniel Millard and wife" appears on the
Niagara provision list for that year.
In 1799 he removed to the township of Woodhouse.� He was a
man of exceedingiy good character, reliable and trustworthy.
He was appointed, in 1800, the first treasurer for London
District. His two sons were given land in Norfolk County, the one
in Woodhouse, the other in Townsend.
DURING the war of the Revolution, James Matthews served as a
cavalryman in the New Jersey volunteers. After the war he
settled on Lyon's Creek, in the Niagara District; but, in 1799,
exchanged his government allotment there for lot 3 of the Gore
He was a member of the first court jury of London District, and a
trustee of the original Woodhouse Methodist Church.
In the war of 1812, he again volunteered, and did faithful
service for his country in the transportation corps. The old
pioneer died in 1818, having lived a century all but four years.
THE name of Abraham Powell was inserted on the list of U. E.
Loyalists by special Order-in-Council, 13th January, 1807. At
that time he had been living in Windham for eight years. On
the 7th February, 1809, he was granted two hundred acres in
Charlotteville, aud on the 20th October of the next year one
of his sons, Jacob, also received two hundred acres. The other
sons received further grants in Windham at a later date.
It is said that Mr. Powell opened the first store in Windham, at
a place which afterwards received the name of Powell's Plains.
In 1804 he was appointed Road Commissioner for Norfolk County,
aud subsequently held other municipal appointments.
One of his sons, Israel, was the Norfolk representative in the
Dominion Parliament from 1841 to 1848; he was also warden of
his county for some time. The family has always taken a
prominent part in municipal politics.
ELIAS and Mary Foster were the first who settled in Walsingham,
west of Big Creek.
Before the war of the Revolution, Elias was in comfortable
circumstances in Long Island. However, he promptly threw in his
lot with the British, and served in the Royal Regiment, New York.
In 1783 he came with others to New Brunswick, settling about
ten miles from Fredericton. He was a widower at the time he
left his American home, but married again in New Brunswick.
In 1800 he came to Long Point with his young family, settling in
Walsingham, near the marsh land, west of Port Royal. Three
years after he was made a justice of the peace, aud later, a
justice of the Court of Requests. He continued a man of
prominence aud influence till his death, in 1833.
His eldest son, Edward, served in the war of 1812 as a
commissariat officer. This gentleman was a skilful hunter, and
his family tell many thrilling "bear stories," tales of
adventure in the thick forests west of Walsingham Centre. His
list of bear "scalps" is said to have amounted to over one hundred.
Muskrats seem to have been plentiful in Walsingham at that
time, for it is said Mr. Foster killed as many as seventeen hundred
in one year. The skins had a value of about two shillings,
York currency. Evidently Long Point was a sportsman's paradise
to an even greater extent than it is at the present time.
IN the Revolutionary war, Jonathan Williams was a captain in the
Loyal Rangers. Strange to say, he was not so much molested by
the Legislature of the State of New York after the war as were
others. He was left off the confiscation and "expurgation"
lists. Consequently, it was not till 1800 that he came to Canada,
when he settled in the township of Woodhouse. His son, Titus, was
born in Long lsland in 1790, and came over with his father.
Four years before the war of 1812, Titus received an ensign's
commission in the 2nd Regiment of Norfolk militia, and as soon
as war was declared he was made lieutenant of the left flank
company, which assembled at Turkey Point. He was second in
command of the 100 volunteers from this county who accompanied
Brock to Detroit, which was followed by the ignominious
surrender of the American general, Hull. His rank was then
raised to that of captain.
Shortly aftcrwards he was ordered to the defence of Fort Erie,
which, it was surmised, would soon be attacked, for thirteen
thousand men were arming and drilling at Buffalo. When the attack
came, the Canadians were forced to retire, for their numbers
were far inferior to those of the American force. However, on
his way back to Chippawa Capt. Williams succeeded in surprising
and taking prisoners thirty Americans under Capt. King. In the
fight at Fort Erie, which lasted through the night, it may be
mentioned that Major Bostwick and John Matthews, of Norfolk County,
were wounded: the former in the head, the latter in the leg.
The next year he was ordered to take forty men and a large boat
and proceed to Sugar Loaf, where a quantity of flour was buried.
This he was to seize during the night, if possible, aud bring
it to headquarters. After dark he proceeded to the point and ran
his boat on shore, but before they could land a volley was fired
into the boat, for the Americans had received information from
a deserter. They had run on the shore with such impetus that
the boat was grounded, and there being no chance of escape, the
whole party were taken prisoners. The captives were forwarded
from one place to another, Schlosser, Fort Niagara, Batavia,
Geneva, Albany, Pittsfield, Mass., and, finally, Philadelphia.
On account of some executions of deserters taken in
arms by the Canadian Government, Williams and his companions
were looked upon as hostages, and stood in hourly danger of the
gallows. They were incarcerated five in a cell, in close
confinement. As time went on, however, the feeling subsided,
and they were liberated on the 18th of May, 1814, and arrived
in Upper Canada July 25th, 1814. On his return he was appointed
adjutant and fought at Lundy's Lane. After that battle he
was placed in command of the militia working on Fort Norfolk,
in Turkey Point, and remained in that capacity till the close of
the war, when the militia was disbanded.
There were few engaged in this struggle for home and fireside
that fought longer or more gloriously. From the 25th of June, 1812,
till the forces were disbanded, in 1815, he was either on duty or
a prisoner of war. Subsequently, he was made successively major
and colonel, and did not lay down his commissions until failing
eyesight demanded his resignation.
Lord Elgin sent a cordial letter of appreciation to him on the
occasion of his handing in his resignation. It reads as
follows: "I have much pleasure in availing myself of the
opportunity of expressing to Col. Titus Williams the high
sense I entertain of his services, and he is hereby permitted
te retire, retaining his rank."
Assuredly the U. E. Loyalists were the "stuff of which heroes
are made." The writer has been told many further incidents of
the bravery of Col. Williams, in the war of 1812, but sufficient
has been said to prove his courage.
[My ancestor was Jonathan Williams and I wish to correct his paragraph.
Jonathan received his land in New Brunswick in the block set aside for the
Guides and Pioneers up the St. John River.� I have a copy of the original
agreement setting out all the Guide & Pioneer names.� He was transported to
NB by ship from New York.� Yes, he did return to New York and appears on
the census or voters' list and was living next door to his wife's parents.
They had babies baptised in the family church.
He came to Upper Canada, to Norfolk, applied for land and was refused as he had
received land in NB.�� Doris Ann Lemon, UE.]
SAMUEL BROWN was a New Jersey loyalist, who came to the Niagara
District in 1786, settling in the township of Stamford. His name
appears on the provision list for that year. "Samuel Brown,
wife, and one child," reads the entry. This child was his eldest
son, James, who had been born in New Jersey three years before.
In 1800 he removed to Norfolk, settling about the centre of
Charlotteville. His family by this time consisted of five sons
and four daughters. Four of the sons left Charlotteville and
settled in Middleton, becoming four of the earliest pioneers of
that township. One, Samuel, jun., was a very successful hunter
and trapper, and accumulated considerable property, paying for
it with the bounties he received from the Government for wolves'
scalps. For these a bounty of $6 each was received.
WITH regard to William Spurgin, the only reliable information we
have is that he was a loyalist from North Carolina. He settled
in Charlotteville about the year 1800, as far as we know. His
son, Samuel, received a grant of two hundred acres in the same
township on the 26th of May, 1817.
THE trouble between loyalists and revolutionists began in many
cases long before the war. The radicals were intolerant of
opposition, and to attempt to be neutral was, in their language,
to be a "traiter."
Such was the case with William Hutchison, of New Jersey. At the
opening of the war he was urged to join the rebel army, but
persistently refused. Henceforward he was followed by the open
and avowed hatred of the American patriots. Their dislike in this
case was unremitting and implacable. His cattle were mutilated,
his barns burned, and, finally, his estate was confiscated, and
orders were given to bring him "dead or alive" before the
executive officers of the State Legisiature. Nothing remained,
therefore, for himself and friends (for there were eleven to whom
this order had reference), but an attempt to escape to the King's
troops. His wife and eight children had to be left behind. The
small body of eleven men were followed, and, being brought to
bay by a detachment of American cavalry, bravely defended themselves
for some minutes, but seeing the contest useless, took refuge
in an old barn. Their hiding-place was soon discovered, and
ten of them were caught and afterwards hanged. It happened
that William Hutchison did not enter the barn as did the others,
but threw himself among some furze bushes a little distance from it.
But his hiding place was none too safe, for one of the sentries
peered into the bush, remarking that "it would be a d___ fine
place for a 'rebel' to hide himself." But being hidden in the
deep shade he was not discovered. So he crawled along the borders
of the field to get to the road, lying motion-less when the moon
shone brightly, and again moving when it was hidden by a cloud.
On every side he could hear the calls of the American troopers
to each other as they prowled round in search of him.
Finally, hovever, he made his escape to the British army, and,
burning for vengeance, he asked to be appointed to the
command of a small body of troops. His request was willingly
granted, for, before the war he had been granted a captain's
commission, and he was a captain of one of the regiments of
New Jersey volunteers. His company did remarkably daring service
for the Motherland during that bitter war.
But his wife and little children did not survive the hardships
to which they were subjectcd, and at the conclusion of peace
he and his two remaining sons went to New Brunswick. There he
married again and settled on the St. John River. There he
remained for about fourteen years, when he removed to the
township of Walsingham, Norfolk County (1798). He was an added
member of the first commission of magistrates for the London District.
In the war of 1812, true to his loyal spirit, he took his three
eldest sons, of whom two had been born in New Brunswick, and went to
the front. At the battle of Moravian town, Alexander, the
eldest, was killed.
Captain Hutchison was a justice of the peace, and for one term of
1809, chairman of the Court of Quarter Sessions at Turkey Point. He
was also an associate justice of the Court of Requests for Walsingham.
The descendants of the Captain live yet in Walsingham, and are connected
with the Beard, Sovereign, Backhouse, Fairchild, and McKinna families
of Norfolk county.
THERE were four brothers of this name settled in New Jersey
before the war, Mathias, Henry, John, and Martin. They came
originally of good old German stock, and remained staunchly
loyal to King George. Not content with a passive allegiance, they
took up arms, not in defence of the "Vaterland" across the water,
but in defence of the right of their adopted sovereign.
In the U. E. Loyalist record we have an entry to the effect that
Henry and John joined the Royal Standard at New York, the
latter in 1779. With regard to Mathias, the entry records show that
he joined the Royal Army in the Jerseys as early as 1777. Martin
is not mentioned, but, no doubt, he was an active loyalist also,
for the four brothers came to this country together in 1795.
The long journey from New Jersey was made on foot, a walk of five
hundred miles. The two children of Henry, a son and a daughter,
Henry and Anne, mere infants at that time, were slung in baskets, one
on either side of a pack horse. Father and mother walked by their
side and carried a few small relics of their former home. They followed
the military highway by Lake Champlain, Fort Ticonderoga, Plattsburg,
and then turned Northward to Cornwall. Slowly they made their way
by land along the north shore of Lake Ontario, and along the
high road running west, which Governor Simcoe had projected in 1795,
but which at that time was; in many places, simply a blaze, for the
Governor had left the Province before his intentions could be carried out.
They settled first at Lyon's Creek, in the Niagara District, but about
1800, removed to the Long Point settlement, and received from
the Government the following grants of land, chiefly in the township of
"John Boughner, son of Mathias, of Willoughby, Lincoln Co., 200
acres, 30th September, 1800.
Mathias Boughner, jun., son of Mathias, 200 acres, 3Oth Sept, 1800.
"Anna Boughner, daughter of Mathias, 200 acres in Woodhouse,
23rd June, 1803.
"Alex. Boughner, son of Mathias 200 acres in Windham 26th June, 1807.
"Getta Boughner, wife of Alexander (Supra) and daughter of Jacob
Glover, a U. E. Loyalist, 200 acres in Windham, 16th. Feb., 1811.
Two daughters of Henry Buckner also received land.
"Elizabeth Owen, wife of Abner Owen, 200 acres in Woodhouse.
"Mary Wilson, wife of Joseph Wilson, jun., 200 acres in Windham,
4th. May, 1811.
The present home of Elias Boughner, on the 13th. concession of
Windham, is on the identical site of the original log cabin,
erected just a century ago.
It will be noticed that the name as spelled in these entries is
"Boughner," a mistake of the copyist no doubt; but as the grants of
land were drawn out in that name, the majority of the family
adopted it thenceforward.
For years the wolf, the bear, and other feroeious animals were a
source of terror to the early settler. The want of firearms and
ammunition, in many cases made their extermination a task of
great difficulty. They grew very bold and would come even by day
to the door of the shanty, ready to seize the poultry, pigs, sheep, or
provisions of the early settler, and even his little child,
while night was made hideous by their incessant howling.
The little sheep-fold of Mr. Mathias Buckner had been broken
into, night after night, by wolves. There was not a doubt as to
the nature of the marauder, for a few inches of snow lay on the
ground and the tracks were plain. He followed the marks through
the woods to a cave at the mouth of which the bloody snow and
scattered tufts of wool were an indisputable evidence that the
offender had been tracked to his den. The mouth of the cave was
not much larger than the body of a man. To attack a ferocious
wolf in such a place might well make a man shudder; but, nothing
daunted, Mr. Buckner prepared to enter the den. He fastened a
candle on the end of a long pole and shoved it into the cavern,
and, taking his musket and a pitchfork, he crawled in on his hands
and knees. The roof of the cave was higher on the inside, and he was
enabled to stand almost upright. Carefully looking around in the
awful silence, he saw a pair of glassy eyes gleaming in the
shadow. His life depended on one shot. He aimed a little below
the glittering eyeballs, and a howl of pain told him that his
shot was effective. But a frantic leap of the maddened animal
showed him also that the wolf was far from dead. He seized the
pitchfork, and, though his coat was torn by the claws of the
wolf as he sprung aside, he succeeded in impaling the animal
at the first thrust, and a few stabs settled it forever.
This story, and others as interesting, was told the writer by an
old lady now nearly eighty years of age, living about two miles
from Tilsonburg. She is the widow of Peter, one of the six sons
of Mathias. Mrs. Boughner is an extraordinarily interesting old
lady, with the marked conversational power of her family.
The family is an extensive one, and well and favorably known
throughout the section, Mr. Elias Boughner being on two
occasions the standard-bearer for the Conservative party in
North Norfolk. Though he missed election, the immense vote
cast for him is an evidence of the regard and esteem with which
his fellow citizens honor him.
IN the War of the Revolution families were frequently divided
by the bitterest hatred. Many times did fathers recognize sons,
or brothers in the opposing battle line. The Wycoff family, of Long
Island, is an instance of this fratricidal division. One of the
family, Major Hendrick Wycoff, was the trusted agent of Governor
Clinton. On the British side Peter Wycoff fought as conscientiously
and as bravely. Immediately after the close of the war, this
Peter Wycoff removed to the Niagara District, settling in Lincoln County,
near St. Catherines. About 1797 he returned to Long Island for some
business purpose, and on his way back it is supposed was murdered,
for he was not heard of again. His widow and two sons, John and Peter
remained for some years at their home in Lincoln County.
After some time the widow married John Clendenning, a miller, and
the family removed to Long Point, settling near Port Ryerse.
Mr. Clendenning was engaged by Mr. Ryerse to manage his mill.
The two sons John and Peter Wycoff, enlisted for the war of 1812.
John was killed on the Niagara frontier, but Peter returned safely
home. He was given 200 acres in Woodhouse on the 17th December,
1816, and lived on his farm until his death, in 1881.
DURING the war of the Revolution, John Haviland, of New York State,
was a captain in the company commanded by Colonel James Delaney.
At the close of the war, he joined the party which Mr. Grass
was preparing to conduct to Upper Canada. They left New York in
five small vessels, and sailed around the coast, arriving at
Sorel, in Quebec, in October, 1788. There they built themselves
shanties, and wintered. In May, 1784, they re-embarked in their
boats and reached Cataraqui, Kingston, in July. Captain
Haviland settled in Adolphustown. There he remained till 1803,
when he removed to the Long Point Settlement, erecting his log
cabin on lot 12 of the 1st concession of Townsend.
Captain Haviland received a large grant of land from the Crown,
as is proved by the following Order-in-Council, under date of
John Haviland, of Townsend, Norfolk County, London District,
gentleman, formerly a captain in Delaney's Regiment, 2,600
acres, to make up 3,000 acres, as captain, in King and
Gwillimbury." This was in the northern part of York County, but
Mr. Haviland preferred to live on the 600 acres in Townsend,
where he had established his home.
There are also the following grants registered:
"Benjamin, son of John Haviland, yeoman, 200 acres in Townsend,
20th March, 1815.
"John, son of John Haviland, yeoman, 200 acres in Townsend,
20th March, 1815.
"Esther, wife of John Haviland, jun., and daughter of Peter
Fairchild, 200 acres, 20th March, 1815.
"Sarah, spinster, daughter of John Haviland, 200 acres in
Townsend, 7th August, 1816; also lot 19, 5th concession, Zorra,
8th May, 1821.
"Fanny, daughter of John Haviland, 200 acres in Townsend,
8th October, 1833.
Captain Haviland enlisted for the war of 1812, and was slightly
wounded in the Battle of Lundy's Lane.
One of his grandsons, also a John Haviland, obtained a part of the
old captain's farm, and so improved it that it is now a
veritable farmer's paradise. The buildings are large, and display a
quaint old-fashioned magnificence. The homestead is a great square
brick house, with a balcony running completely around the second story.
Everything is in keeping, and the impression given to the
visiter is one of easy circumstances and solid comfort.
THE name of Peter Fairchild was inserted on the original list of
U. E. Loyalists by a special Order-in-Council, dated 10th May, 1808.
It is here stated that he joined the Royal Standard in 1777.
It would seem by this that he did not come to Canada till quite
late, probably about the year 1805.
At any rate, it is certain that he was settled in Townsend by the
year 1807, for we find mention of him in that year in the records of
the township. His family received from the Government the following
grants of land:
"Rebecca, daughter of Peter Fairchild, a U. E. Loyalist, wife of
Joseph Meril, 200 acres in Charlotteville, 28th May, 1811.
"Elizabeth, daughter of Peter Fairchild, wife of J. Smith, 200 acres
in Charlotteville, 21st June, 1811.
"Benjamin, son of Peter Fairchild, 200 acres in Townsend,
7th August, 1816.
Sarah, daughter of Peter Fairchild, spinster, 200 acres in
Townsend, 8th October. 1833.
The Fairchild and Haviland families were connected by the marriage
of Benjamin Fairchild, - spoken of above, to Elizabeth, daughter
of John Haviland of the same place.
JACOB and Joseph Wilson were brothers.� On the outbreak
of hostilities they each joined the British, and were enrolled
in the New Jersey volunteers. Jacob was made a sergeant in one
company. Joseph was a private in Barton's division.
After the war they settled first in the Niagara District, but
in the early years of the century removed to the Township of
Windham. Their children received the following grants of land:
"Philip, son of Jacob Wilson, two hundred acres, 23rd March,
1811, in Windham.
"Mary, daughter of Joseph Wilson, wife of Michael Cairo, two
hundred acres in Windham, 26th March, 1811.
"Elizabeth, daughter of Joseph Wilson, wife of John Van Atter,
two hundred acres in Windham, 25th February, 1812."
DURING the war of American Independence, Michael Shaw was a
private soldier in Butler's Rengers, and was one of the three
hundred who attacked Fort Wyoming. He settled first in the Niagara
District, and afterwards in the Township of Townsend. His
two sons received grants as follows:
Dennis, son of Michael Shaw of same place a U. E. Loyalist two
hundred acres in Townsend 12th October 1810
Michael, jun., two hundred acres in Townsend 23rd December 1815.
Nothing further concerning the family has been learned.
THOMAS DAVIS was a member of a North Carolina regiment. He settled
after the war in the Township of Willoughby, County of Lincoln,
of the Niagara District. Later, he removed to Woodhouse, in
Norfolk County. His daughter, Fanny, was married to a son of
Jacob Wilson, and received a grant of 200 acres in Charlotteville on
the 2Oth. May, 1835.
The writer has not learned anything further concerning the family.
JACOB GLOVER was a merchant of Newtown, Connecticut. On the outbreak
of the war he served as a sergeant in Lord Rawdon's command. In 1770
he was sent to Long Island in a boat in command of eight soldiers
to capture Major-General Sillman.� The American general was captured
easily, for he was alone and comparatively defenceless. On returning
to the mainland they found Colonel Simcoe, of the Queen's Rangers,
waiting for them, who called out, "Have you got him ?"� Answer "Yes."
"Have you lost any men?" "No." "That is well," answered Simcoe,
"Your Sillmans are not worth a man, nor your Washingtons."
ANTHONY DOUGHARTY was one of the North Carolina Loyalists. To
the best belief of the writer, he did not come to Canada till
about 1810. He is mentioned on p. 6 of Folio II of the Loyalist
Docket Books as "Of Townsend, lately deceased." This entry is
under date 16th October, 1811, in connection with a grant of two
hundred acres in Townsend to his daughter, Margaret, the wife of
Nathaniel Root. Another daughter, Elizabeth, the wife of
Alexander Tagert, was given two hundred acres in Townsend on the
16th March, 1817.
No further information concerning the family has been obtained.
REUBEN GREEN was a sergeant in the 1st battalion of New Jersey
volunteers. He settled in Townsend in 1811, receiving from the
Government a grant of 500 acres, on the 7th May of that year, as
a military claimant.
Two of his daughters also received grants of land:
"Elizabeth, wife of John Dickson, daughter of Reuben Green, two
hundred acres in Townsend, 23rd December, 1815."
"Phoebe, wife of Jonathan Silverthorne, two hundred acres in
Townsend, 23rd December, 1815."
The writer has not obtained any further information concerning
SUCH is the story of the settlement of United Empire Loyalists
in the Long Point District. It has been the aim of the writer
to tell, in a simple and straightforward style, of those brave men
who laid the foundation of a loyal British population in that part
of Upper Canada. The material for the last forty chapters at least has
been obtained from the descendants of these Loyalist settlers.
Traditions as to the settlement of their ancesters are preserved
in almost every family.
It may be wondered that the literature as to the Loyalists is so
scanty, but the reason is not hard to guess. They who are
driven from their homes, who surrender their property and are
forced to flee with what little baggage can be carried on the
back of a horse or a cow, exiles from their native land,
wanderers in a strange one, leave but few written memorials
for the guidance of those who come in after days. Their papers
are scattered and lost. Further, those who must devote their
time and energy to the all-absorbing task of clearing away
the forest and rearing new homes for their little ones in a land
removed from even the vestiges of civilization, have but little
time or inclination for writing history or recording events.
Their feelings are often too bitter for tears or for words.
Hence, except for the purely historical part, dealing with their
enforced exile from the land of their birth, common to all the
Loyalists who sought a refuge in Canada, we have had to depend
It is to be hoped that the traditions embodied in these pages
are not materially inaccurate. The method of comparison and
examination of different individuals as to the settlement of a
single person has been adopted so far as circumstances would permit.
It is astonishing to find so much unanimity and consistency as
to the tales and stories that are in these pages. Sons are yet
alive whose fathers carved a home out of the wilderness almost
a century since, and their evidence in many cases is unimpeachable.
The writer has been oftentimes intensely stirred by the stories told
by old men, now on the verge of the grave. If these chapters give
to the mind of the reader an increased feeling of pride in the early
settlers of this Province, the purpose of this treatise has been
accomplished, and these pages, begun in a spirit of extreme timidity,
and sent forth with many a misgiving as to their crudeness and
imperfection, will not have been in vain.
The Rev. Le Roy Hooker, of Detroit, expresses the issues which
the Loyalists had to face, in a few beautiful lines:
"These be thy heroes, Canada!
These men, who stood, when pressed,
Not in the fevered pulse of strife,
When foeman thrusts at foeman's life,
But in that sterner test
When wrong on sumptuous fare is fed,
And right must toil for daily bread,
And men must choose between.
When wrong in lordly mansion lies,
And right must shelter 'neath the skies,
And men must choose between.
When wrong is cheered on every side,
And right is cursed and crucified,
And men must choose between.
And when you pray for
Implore kind heaven, that like a leaven,
The hero blood which then was given
May quicken in her veins each day;
So shall she win a spotless fame,
And like the sun her honored name,
Shall shine to latest years the same."