In connection with the obituary notice of the late Parker Allen, J.P. of Adolphustown, in last week’s Beaver, it was stated that his grandfather, Joseph Allen, was a mill-owner and landed proprietor in New Jersey at the time of the breaking out of the great American rebellion, in 1775, and because of his supposed sympathy with the British, the American revolutionists caused his mill and other property to be destroyed. He then enlisted in the British army and at the end of the rebellion all his property was confiscated, in common with most of the others who were loyal to the British Crown, and had, later on to join the U.E.L. refugees in Upper Canada.
It has been previously stated in the columns of The Beaver that in 1783 an Act was passed the British Parliament authorizing an official enquiry to be made into the losses sustained by the Loyalists and, later on, that Commissioners were appointed to enquire into the circumstance of these losses and to report what compensation should be made to them. The evidence taken by these Commissioners is much of it, in manuscript form, among the archives at Washington. During the last couple of years arrangements have been made by our Ontario U.E. Loyalist Association , to have much of these facts transcribed and prepared for publication here.
We understand that in a short time volumes will be published containing much of the evidence in many of these cases.
JOSEPH ALLEN’S CASE
Through the kindness of Mr. James, Deputy Minister of Agriculture for Ontario, we have been supplied with the following report in Mr. Allen’s case, which has never before been published. The facts are of interest and well bear out the statements we have previously made. They ought to be read with interest, as they are a sample of the evidence of many of the other Loyalist sufferers of those days. Here are the facts as reported:
Claim of Joseph Allen,
late of Monmouth Co., New Jersey,
Claimant says he was at New Brunswick in the fall of 83. Gave a claim to Mr. Hardy to be sent to England which was accordingly sent but not delivered by Mr. Hardy’s agent, Chevalier Rooms.
Is a native of America. Lived at Monmouth Co., when rebellion broke out. When the British army were at New Brunswick in 1776, he carried in recruits to General Skinner and Col. Morris. But he continued at his own place till 1780 though he was frequently taken up and imprisoned.
In 1780 he was imprisoned, broke goal and got to New York. Joined Major Ward, served in the associated Loyalists. Claimant raised a company and had the command of them at Bergen from 81 till the Evacuation of New York. Came at the Evacuation to Nova Scotia, afterwards to Canada now settled at Bay of Quen’ty.
Had a tract of land called Lawrence Neck in Monmouth Co. Produces deed from Abraham Schenk to Claimant of a Moiety of Lawrence Neck in consideration of 140,000 feet of good inch pine boards dated 1770.
Produces deed from Peter Benson to Claimant, says he made great improvements. Built two houses and a large barn. Not much clear when he bought it There were 100 acres clear when he left it.
There was one house and barn where he lived. Another house on the farm which he let to one Helms who was to clear 10 acres annually for Claimant. Values the land at 2.15 per acre Jersey. Houses etc., as in schedule. Produces appraisement by three appraisers at the sum above mentioned.
Had 15 acres of land with a sawmill.
Produces the deed from Abraham Schenk, mentioned in No. 1, wherin mention is made of 2 tracts besides the Lawrence Neck. Says this was 15 acres and a saw mill. Values it at £75, so valued by the appraisers.
Produces certificate from the Court of Monmouth Co., of sale of a Moiety to pay a mortgage of £80 to the Loan office, and that the surplus was paid to the agent of forfeited estates.
Produces certificate of sale of the other Moiety.
Produces an affidavit from one James Allen who had been a juror on a survey taken of the estate, that it contained above 1300 acres.
Had a sloop of 30 tons.
Produces bill of sale of it in 1771 for £160 York. He had bought a new set of sails. This was taken by a Rebel officer from Claimant in 1776, who took also the rigging and sails. They stripped off the rigging, drove the sloop into a Creek where she rotted.
Produces an affidavit from Wm. Gilford confirming this account, and that the persons who took - - sloop said that they would put it out of Claimant’s power to get away in her.
Claimant says he meant to have gone in her to New York. Values her at £200 Jersey, had 70 head of cattle, 3 horses, furniture, clothes, utensils.
When Claimant was a prisoner in 1780, these things were all taken from the house by a scouting party of rebels. Produces an affidavit from Margr. Reynolds, who had been a servant in his house, of his loss as above stated.
Do. from two other persons.
Says the debts due by him, were not paid out of his estate, but he expects to be called upon from them. The debts due to him on bills, notes and book accounts amounted to 419 114 6.
Produces a certificate from John Stilwell, agent of forfeited estates, that he had received the said bills, notes, etc., for the use of the state.
Elizah Grooms, witness, knew claimant. He was always loyal. He sent Recruits to the British army in 76. He went to New York in 1780, and served in the Associated Loyalists. He was called a captain. Knew his lands at Lawrence Neck. Remembers him in possession. He built a house and barn and another outhouse, and made improvement in clearing land. After the purchase there was a great quantity of clear land and some meadow, sowed and plowed. Values clear land at 4 or 5 per acre Jersey cur., uncleared lands 40 shillings Jersey, a very large stock of creatures.
The rebels took his stock. Witness knows that a good many were sold at a public vendue.