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republicanism would.

Historians estimate that ten to fifteen per cent of the population of the Thirteen

Colonies - some 250,000 people - opposed the revolution; some passively, others

by speaking out, spying, or fighting against the rebels.

Because of their political convictions, Loyalists who remained in the Thirteen

Colonies during the revolution were branded as traitors and hounded by their

Patriot (rebel) neighbours. Such an incident occurred in 1775:

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At Quibbleton, New Jersey, Thomas Randolph, cooper, who (as the

Patriots said) had publicly proved himself an enemy to his country,

by reviling and using his utmost endeavours to oppose the

proceedings of the continental and provincial conventions... was

ordered to be stripped naked, well coated with tar and feathers, and

carried on a wagon publicly around the town - which punishment

was accordingly inflicted. As soon as he became duly sensible of his

offense, for which he earnestly begged pardon, and promised to

atone, as far as he was able, by contrary behaviour for the future, he

was released and suffered to return to his house, in less than half an


Patriot authorities punished Loyalists who spoke their views too loudly by

stripping them of their property and goods and banishing them on pain of death

should they ever return. They coerced others into silence with threats.

Throughout the Thirteen Colonies that were under Patriot control, Loyalists

could not vote, sell land, sue debtors, or work as lawyers, doctors, or

schoolteachers. To be fair, in Loyalist-controlled areas, supporters of the

Revolution met with similar treatment at the hands of British authorities.

Approximately 70,000 Loyalists fled the Thirteen Colonies. Of these, roughly

50,000 went to the British North American Colonies of Quebec and Nova Scotia.

For some, exile began as early as 1775 when "committees of safety" throughout

the Thirteen Colonies began to harass British sympathizers. Other responded by

forming Loyalist regiments: The King's Royal regiment of New York, Skinner's

New Jersey Volunteers, The Pennsylvania and Maryland Loyalists, Butler's

Rangers, Rogers' Rangers and Jessup's Corps were the best known of some 50

Loyalist regiments that campaigned actively during the war.

The signing of the Treaty of Paris (1783), which recognized the independence of

the United States, was the final blow for the Loyalists. Faced with further

mistreatment and the hostility of their countrymen, and wishing to live as British

subjects, Loyalists who had remained in the Thirteen Colonies during the war

now were faced with exile. Those who wished to in North America had two

choices; Nova Scotia (Maritimes) or Quebec (Ontario-Quebec).

Exodus to an Unknown Land

Fleeing in panic and confusion, forced to leave behind most of their possessions

and burdened with the prospect of building a new life in a new land, the

Loyalists faced unpromising beginnings. The lands they were to settle were

isolated, forbidding and wild.

"It is, I think, the roughest land I ever saw... But this is to be the city, they say...

We are all ordered to land tomorrow and not a shelter to go under", Sarah

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Frost, a Loyalist from New York wrote in her diary as she contemplated the land

that she and her husband were about to settle.

In addition to the anguish of defeat and the trauma of exile, Loyalists had to face

isolation and feelings of helplessness. The grandmother of Sir Leonard Tilley,

one of the fathers of Confederation, expressed what many Loyalists felt when she


I climbed to the top of Chipman's Hill (Saint John) and watched the

sails in the distance, and such a feeling of loneliness came over me

that though I had not shed a tear through all the war, I sat down on

the damp moss with my baby on my lap and cried bitterly.

Shortages, harsh living conditions, and worry plagued the Loyalists in the hastily

erected refugee camps. Many had to live in tents during the first winter. The

wife of a soldier on the Saint John River wrote:

We pitched our tents in the shelter of the woods and tried to cover

them with spruce boughs. We used stones for fireplaces. Our tents

had no floors but the ground... how we lived through that winter, I

barely know...

Many didn't live through the first winter; many left with the relief fleets when

they set sail the next spring. Those who did survive had to deal with delays in

completing land surveys and shortages of tools and provision. But the Loyalist's

determination and resourcefulness assured the ultimate success of many of the

new settlements.

Loyalist Settlements in British North America

Nova Scotia

In the spring of 1776 the first shipload of Loyalists left the Thirteen Colonies for

Nova Scotia. The British government gave them free passage and permitted

them to take necessary articles with them.

By 1783 there were about 50,000 Loyalist leaders and refugees living in New

York. Although the peace treaty signed that year promised them safety, the

Loyalists heard that the Patriot victory had increased persecution. Therefore,

up to 30,000 decided to leave for Nova Scotia. Many of the settlers were

members of disbanded Loyalist regiments. Colonel Edward Winslow who came

from New England was an aristocrat. There were representatives of such

minority groups as Dutch, Huguenots, and Quakers, and a number of Loyalists

brought slaves with them.

Many of the Black Loyalists were members of an exclusively Black corps of the

British army who had been promised their freedom if they would support the

Crown. Among their numbers was Henry Washington who had run away from

the service of George Washington. Assuming their equality with white soldiers,

the Black Loyalists expected similar treatment. Sadly, this did not turn out to be

the case since benefits in the form of land provisions were not distributed

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equally. Doomed to a life of subservience, if not actual slavery, about half of the

Black Loyalists soon left for Sierra Leone.

Approximately half of the refugees settled near the Saint John River with a

concentration at the mouth of the river around and excellent harbour. This

developed onto the city of Saint John. There were also settlements along the

south coast of the peninsula at Shelburne, Digby, and Lunenburg.

The Loyalists did not mix well with the older settlers and preferred to live in

groups by themselves as far away as possible. They doubted the loyalty of these

people who had called themselves "Neutral Yankees" during the war, and they

resented their monopoly over government appointments. Consequently they

began to petition the government to separate Loyalist settlements in the Saint

John River valley, as well as smaller settlements on St. John's Island (Prince

Edward Island) and Cape Breton Island, from the government in Halifax. The

British government granted their requests in 1784. New Brunswick, whose

population was 90% Loyalist became a separate colony with its capital 90 miles

upriver from Saint John. The first lieutenant-governor, Thomas Carleton,

named the settlement Fredericton in honour of Frederic, the Duke of York.


Although there was some Loyalist migration into what is today the Province of

Quebec, by far the greatest numbers came to present-day Ontario. The

disbanded Loyalist regiments provided the majority of settlers. Colonel John

Butler, a powerful landowner in the Mohawk Valley of New York, organized

Butler's Rangers and fought along with Native Loyalists. He led his followers to

the west bank of the Niagara River when the regiment disbanded in 1784. Some

families moved farther west from this settlement to the shores of Lake Erie, the

Detroit River, and the Thames River. Colonel Butler continued his association

with the Natives as Superintendent on Indian Affairs and head of their militia.

Native Americans, and notably members of the Five Nations in New York,

tended to side with the British because they believed the British were more likely

than the Patriots to protect them. Approximately 2,000 followed Thayendanegea

(Joseph Brant) into British North America after the war. The majority settled in

the valley of the Grand River; smaller groups went to the head of Lake Ontario

and to the shores of the Bay of Quinte.

Disbanded Loyalist Regiments also settled along the St.Lawrence River

upstream from Montreal and along the North shore of Lake Ontario. At their

request they were settled according to nationality and religion. The majority of

the settlers had been frontier farmers before the revolution and they were used

to wilderness conditions, but they had lost almost everything they owned when

they fled from their homes. The government gave them a limited amount of

support with the most extensive reward being in the form of free land. They

granted land to the heads of households according to their military rank and

extended grants to wives and children born and unborn.

The Loyalists brought with them the tradition of freehold land tenure, British

Laws and representative government. They did not want to give up these rights

by living under the Quebec Act which guaranteed the seigneurial system of

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landholding and denied an elected assembly to the people of that colony. Shortly

after their arrival,

Loyalist representatives petitioned the government to alter the system of holding

land in Quebec to freehold tenure similar to that of Nova Scotia and New


In 1791 the British Parliament passed the Canada Act, usually known as the

Constitutional Act, which provided for the division of Quebec into Upper and

Lower Canada. Both colonies were granted an elected assembly and the freehold

system of land tenure went into effect in Upper Canada (later Ontario). These

laws clearly show the influence of the Loyalists.

The Loyalist Heritage

Of less practical value than land and supplies, but have more lasting significance

to the Loyalists and their descendants, was the government's recognition of the

stand that they had taken. Realizing the importance of some type of

consideration, on November 9, 1789, Lord Dorchester, the governor of Quebec,

declared "that it was his Wish to put the mark of Honour upon the Families who

had adhered to the Unity of the Empire..." As a result of Dorchester's statement,

the printed militia rolls carried the notation:

N.B. Those Loyalists who have adhered to the Unity of the Empire,

and joined the Royal Standard before the Treaty of Separation in the

year 1783, and all their Children and their Descendants by either

sex, are to be distinguished by the following Capitals, affixed to their

names: U.E. Alluding to their great principle The Unity of the


The initials "U.E." are rarely seen today, but the influence of the Loyalists on the

evolution of Canada remains. Their ties with Britain and their antipathy to the

United States provided the strength needed to keep Canada independent and

distinct in North America.

The Loyalists' basic distrust of republicanism and "mod rule" influenced

Canada's gradual "paper-strewn" path to nationhood, in contrast to the abrupt

and violent upheavals in other countries.

In the two centuries since the Loyalists' arrival, the myths and realities of their

heritage have intertwined to have a powerful influence on how we, as Canadians,

see ourselves. Truly, the arrival of the United Empire Loyalists not only changed

the Course of Canadian history by prompting the British government to

establish the provinces of New Brunswick and Ontario, but is also gave them

special characteristics which can be seen today. Perhaps the most striking of

these is the motto on the Ontario coat of arms: Ut incept sic permanet fidelis

that is, "As she began, so she remains, Loyal".

3S. Rachel

I am guessing at this name based on how Richard's children and grandchildren were named. PDC.
(John Schneider of Florence SC has 'Rachel' for wife but he may have gotten this from my notes.)
This from Kate Cook: : "While the Women Only Wept -- Loyalist Refugee Women in Eastern Ontario", by Janice

Potter-MacKinnon, p. 51:

The Fergusons, who owned a farm "in partnership" near Fort Edward and settled west of Cataraqui on the Bay of Quinte

after the Revolution, illustrated how all members of a family were involved in fighting the war. In 1777 the eldest son,

Israel, joined the Burgoyne expedition at Skenesborough. A year later the second son, Richard, joined, to be followed

the following year by Farrington, who was still very young. Rachel, the mother, and her daughters remained at home

behind enemy lines where they supplied and hid raiding parties. In 1779 they were imprisoned "for harboring &

entertaining a Number of Tories who come down from Canada with an inte[n]tion of Murdering the Defenseless

Inhabitants on the Western Frontiers..." When the women were released on bail, they followed the men to Canada.

Author's reference: Palsits, Minutes, 9/8/1779, 1:441; claim of Israel, Richard and Farrington Ferguson, AO Report,

1904, 1075.

4. Farrington Ferguson

FARRINGTON FERGUSON, (Richard3, Thomas2, John1), was probably born ca. 1725 and came to Dutchess with

his father. On 18 July 1754 he married Rachel Green at the Rombout Presbyterian Church. [PRCh]. He was noted as

born Westchester Co. and she was born Poughkeepsie. Rachel was probably dau. of Richard and Catherine (Winne)

Green of Oswego, Beekman Patent.

He was taxed in Beekman from Feb. 1753 through the end of the lists in 1778 and was assessed at £1 in June 1753

and 1758, £2 in 1760, £3 from June 1763 through 1770 and £5 in 1778.

He was on the earliest tax lists adjacent to John Ferguson and John Ferguson Jr. He first appeared in the Livingston

Papers in Rent book ‘A”, page 57, which proves his ancestry. The farm on which he and his father Richard were first

mentioned was in lot 19 and was first listed in the rent books for Gabriel Wright but Wright probably never settled there

as he was in lot 17 by 1738. The probable first tenant was Michael Smith. The farm was 216 acres with a yearly rental of

21 bushels, 2 fowls and 1 day riding.

The entries in the rent book are revealing:

Debit side--

“1736 Term is 3 lives, Mighel Smith[.] further time is Given for the said farm which now is in the possession of Mighel

Smit with the first payments to be made in the year 1750.” (The first rents had been due 1743 but since Wright had not

established a farm Smith was given more time). “17 Aug. 1749 writ them a line by John Paddock to meet me at


1 May 1751 To rent due for 1750 21-2-1

do 1752 To rent due FARINGTON FARGASON for 1751 21-2-1

do 1753 To rent due for 1752 21-2-1

do 1754 To rent due for 1753 21-2-1


1 May 1755 To rent now due on a now (?) for 1754 21-2-1

1756 To rent now due for 1755 21-2-1

1757 To rent due for 1756 21-2-1

{names to put in his lease, Farington Farguson Ratchel (struck out) his daughters Jantie & Ellinor}”

Credit side--

“1 May 1743 Mighel Smith

Ferington or Ffarrinton & Richd Ffarkinson or Fargason

He is to pay £40 1 April to Mighel Smith whereof Smith oweth me £26.10 of wch I have rendered said Farkinson an acct

of by Robt Embree 29 Dec. 1748.

24 Augst 1749 the abov & his father met me in the court house in Poughksie and there promised to make payment this

fall & take indenture for the farm assuming a grant letter. It is paid by a bond 1 May 1751.

24 Aug. 1754 Accounted for & included in a bond now for 1742-53 63-5-3 Sais he will pay part this fall, Quy [query,

question] he says hath no lease, would have one now in his name. Wife’s name Rachel.”

This ledger listed rents due through 1767 and payments made at various mills through 1765 when the account was

transferred to ledger ‘B’, page 8. This ledger has not been located. When the account was closed in this ledger there was

a balance due of 47 bushels, 10 fowls and 5 day’s riding. In the accounting done 1 May 1759 for back rents in Beekman,

Farrington was listed on farms of 216 acres in both lots 16 and 19. He owed one year’s rent on the lot 16 farm, 13

bushels, 4 fowls and 2 day’s riding, and the same for the lot 19 farm except the yearly rent was 21 bushels. On the 1st day

of May 1770 he was in arrears 37 bushels 8 fowls and 4 day’s riding.
He was noted in other Beekman records:

Farrington Ferguson was in arrears 37 bushels of wheat on 1 May 1751.

“24 Aug. 1754, Farrington Ferguson Cr. by bond £68/14 payable 15 Feb. 1755.”

“11 Dec. 1754, Farrington Ferguson Cr. 3 casks beef @36/ each & what I shall sell it for more. Debit cartage. £5/8.”99

On 4 Jan. 1755 the ledger adds: “Farrington Ferguson Dr for repacking his beef 3 casks added 14 pounds beef, one

bushel of salt 3/ paid for packing 2/3 £/8/9.” [ELP Box 129]. On 12 July 1756 his name was on a list of wheat

“delivered at Lawrence Van Kleeck's to this time”

19 May 1757 “A List of Bonds delivered to James G. Livingston to put in suit the 19th day of May 1757 against the

following persons, viz” Farrington Ferguson £68/14. [ELP Box 129 p. 148].

24 Sept. 1759 “Farrington Ferguson Cr for payment on his bond £20.”

21 Aug. 1762 “By Farrington Ferguson for back rent & for £10 on his bond £20.”

Henry Beekman sued him in the Court of Common Pleas in May 1757.

Farrington Ferguson’s farm was described in the division of the estate of Margaret Livingston in 1780. His lease was

dated 1 May 1770 and was to his sons Farrington and Charles and to his dau. Rachel. The acreage was 187 and the farm

was in lot 19. The quality of the land was ‘middling’ and the rents were 20 bushels, 2 fowls and 2 days riding per year.

The farm was valued at £374 but was appraised for the estate at £700. The account was at folio 110 in the rent book.

Farrington Ferguson was a Schenk store customer and on 29 Oct. 1764 John Ferguson’s account was credited by

Farrington. He bought tea at 4 shillings 3p.

On 30 Oct. 1764 he paid with 2 bushels of flax seed (£1/1/0) and charged 1 gallon of rum and 1 bushel salt. [Day

Book ‘B’ 119, 123]. On 24 Jan. 1766 and 13 Feb. 1767 he paid his account with 61 pounds of butter at £2/15/. He had

purchased sundries, Indigo and tea. [Schenk Store Ledger ‘A’ 171].

He was a path master in Beekman in 1784 and testified 18 April 1780 in behalf of Gulielmus Moore of Beekman in an

appeal to Governor Clinton.

He sued John Cramer and the suit was ordered discontinued on the defendant paying costs.

He was listed in Beekman in 1790 at 2-0-3 between Richard Wilson and Philip Cramer. John,

Benjamin and Abraham Ferguson were all within 10 of his listing.

Farrington Ferguson’s farm in lot 19 was mentioned as a boundary in a deed of 1 June 1792 from Thomas Tillotson

and Margaret to Jonathan Clark of Beekman.

He was a petitioner in an insolvency action against Abraham Ferguson: “By order of Maurice Pleas, esq. one of the

judges, notice is given to creditors of Abraham Ferguson, insolvent, to show cause on Wednesday 3 Oct. 1787 at home of

Stephen Ferguson of Beekman’s.” Petitioners were Joseph P. Horton, John Ferguson, Farrington Ferguson, Jonas Soams,

Nenny Bice, widow. [CJ & PA 26 Sept. 1787].

Farrington Ferguson and Arie DeLong (Jr.) were on a bond of £20 together to guarantee the appearance of Farrington

in court to answer a charge of trespass brought by Nicholas DeLavergne in the amount of £10. Ferguson signed with

his mark and Elijah Ferguson was a witness to the document which was dated 3 April 1753. [AD 3283].
He evidently died before 1799 when his widow advertised their farm for sale:

“TO BE SOLD And possession given 1st May 1799 A valuable farm in Beekman town, DC containing 177 acres of

good land, with a proportionate quantity of timber and meadow, and more with convenience may be made; an excellent

orchard of 300 bearing trees, and other fruits; a good house with 4 rooms on the floor, 3 fireplaces, and an excellent

celler under the whole, and a good kitchen adjoining the house; a lasting stream of water within ten yards of the door,

and a large Dutch barn. The house is situated within 14 miles of Poughkeepsie, and 13 of Wapping’s creek landing. For

further particulars enquire of RACHEL FERGUSON on the premises who will give an indisputable title to the same.


Information on his family is primarily from the will of his widow which was written at Beekman (no date) and

probated 14 Sept. 1799. Rachel named son Charles Ferguson and his children Pileman, John, Rachel and Sarah, and

daughters Hannah, Elenor, Catherine, Rachel, Anna and Jane. She named son-inlaw Charles (sic) Losee. She named

executors Charles Losee, Samuel Dorland Jr. and Rachel, her daughter. The witnesses were Samuel Germond, Joseph

Lee and Enoch Dorland. The will did not name sons-in-law nor did it name son Farrington although his connection is

proven by lease of 1770.

Farrington Ferguson’s farm was entered on the assessment list in 1799 but was then crossed off.. His house and barn

seemed to have been valued at $414 with no personal property and no tax due.


i. Charles; m. Mary ___.

ii. Elenor, b. 25 Feb. 1756, bp. 26 June 1757. [RECORD 1879:137];

m. Isaac Vail. Her bp. was performed at Fishkill but recorded in St. George’s Church at Hempstead. She died 8 June

1830 and Isaac Vail then married one of her sisters. They had 7 children and lived at Halfmoon.104
iii. Catherine,105 b. 1758, bp. 25 May 1760 at RPCh; m. Gerrit Snedeker,

15 March 1777. “Gerrit Snedeker and Cathrina Farguson, both of Beekmans Prect. married after the third publication.

(15 March 1777).” [NHRCh]. She died 26 Oct. 1824 after having eleven children, including a son Farrington. Gerrit

Snedeker and his brother Jacob, who married Charlotte Ferguson, were sons of Christaien and Mary (Baker) Snedeker.

iv. Rachel; m. Chauncy Losee 16 Sept. 1780 at Hopewell.107

v. Anna; m. ?William Baldwin.

vi. Jane, m. Barent Harris 7 Dec 1776. She was noted as born Oswego. [NHRCh, HRCh]. He died at Half Moon ca. 1819

and his widow and Richard Clute posted a bond of $500. On 20 April 1827, Jane Harris, widow of Barent Harris,

deceased, petitioned that her dower rights be granted for 13 acres in Half Moon which her husband had conveyed to their

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