Living in Interesting Times:  Two Loyalist Families in York Township, Upper Canada

On Monday evening OGS Toronto Branch holds its first meeting of 2023, at 7:30 pm.

While building his family tree, Rick Hill was surprised to discover a 3rd great-grandmother who could have boasted that three of her four grandparents were United Empire Loyalists – and she had a Loyalist great-grandfather, too! During the American Revolutionary War, these UEL ancestors – Henry Dennis, his son John, John’s wife Martha (née Brown), and Lawrence Johnson – all fled Pennsylvania. Three of the four made it out of the future USA, first to Nova Scotia, and ultimately to York Township and the town of York in Upper Canada. Their stories include the Battle of St. Lucia, the Quaker religion, losing a husband at sea, founding a settlement that banned slave masters, shipbuilding in Kingston, ill-starred actions in the War of 1812, a house at the corner of King & Yonge, a Methodist bishop, and the first customer of a new burial ground.

The evening begins with a mini presentation from Branch Chair Carol Ufford: From No Story to a Life Story—Breaking Down a Brick Wall. When Carol started working on her family history, she only knew her great grandmother’s name—and that turned out to be wrong! Carol will tell the story how, over a thirty-year time span, she managed to break down that brick wall and fill in her great grandmother’s life story.

All are welcome to attend. Weather permitting this will be a hybrid presentation, in person at Lansing United Church (Beecroft Road and Poyntz Avenue, Toronto) or register to attend virtually via Zoom:

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