Scotch-Irish-L Archives

Archiver > Scotch-Irish > 2006-08 > 1154639234

From: "Richard J.Saunders" <>
Subject: Re: Immigration
Date: Thu, 03 Aug 2006 17:07:14 -0400

After the American Revolution several thousand families came to settle in
1784 in the western part of the colony of Quebec, later to be known as Upper
Canada, then Canada West and today as Ontario. These settlers were
discharged British and German servicemen, former members of American
Loyalist regiments, and some civilians and refugees. A number of families
were already established in the Niagara-Detroit region, headed principally
by soldiers in Butler's Rangers and members of the Indian Department. In the
Detroit region there were already a few hundred families, mainly of French
A decision was made in 1791 to divide the colony - Lower Canada in the East
retaining French civil law and the seignorial land system, and Upper Canada
in the west with British laws and freehold land grants, The first Lieutenant
Governor of Upper Canada, Colonel John Graves Simcoe, arrived in late 1791
and convened the first elected Paliament in 1792 in Newark, earlier known as
West Niagara and later renamed - Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Simcoe was a firm believer in building up the new colony with hardy people
accustomed to the rigours of frontier life and encouraged Americans to come
to Upper Canada. They were offered grants of 200 acres of land on condition
they would take an oath of allegiance and be loyal to the British regime.
The military and Loyalist arrivals who had come earlier received larger
grants, generally in relation to their services to the Crown, their rank or
status, and family size. The term "Loyalist" was not well defined other than
signifying someone who had remained loyal to Britain during the American
Revolution. One special privilege given to Loyalists was a free grant of 200
acres of land to each son and daughter on coming of age. This attractive
benefit did not apply to the children of former British and German
servicemen and other settlers.
All settlers received tickets or certificates showing the location of the
lots on which they were to clear land and build houses, with full title to
be given at a later date when settlement duties had been performed. These
tickets were exchanged fairly freely - people moved from one site to another
or traded tickets for goods, services or cash.
If you will supply the name of your Ancestor, I will see if they are in a
book that I have on Ontario People 1796-1803
Richard Saunders
Woburn, MA

This thread: