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Auchmuty, Robert, Jr. (1725–11 December 1788), lawyer and Loyalist, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Scottish-born Robert Auchmuty, a judge of admiralty in Massachusetts, and Mary Julianna. As a youth Robert attended Boston Latin School and was admitted to Harvard, class of 1746, but never matriculated. He benefited from growing up in an upper-class family and learned law from his father. In 1762 he became a barrister, and many considered him the third best lawyer in Massachusetts, just behind ...

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Browne, William (27 February 1737–13 February 1802), Massachusetts Superior Court judge and Loyalist, was born in Salem, Massachusetts, the son of Samuel Browne, Jr., a merchant, and Catherine Winthrop. Both families had lived in Salem for five generations. On the matrilineal side William could trace his lineage back to four colonial governors, the Winthrops and the Dudleys. On the patrilineal side one of William’s great-grandfathers was Gilbert Burnet, bishop of Salisbury, England. When William was only five years old, his father died, and when William was seven, his mother married Colonel Epes Sargent. Because the Browne family was the most distinguished and popular in Salem, when William entered Harvard at age fourteen, he was ranked third in his class. He lived in Massachusetts Hall, held a scholarship, and was noted as “an excellent scholar.” He graduated in 1755 as valedictorian of his class. Classmate ...

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Dunbar, Moses (14 June 1746–19 March 1777), first civilian executed in the state of Connecticut for the crime of treason, was born in Wallingford, Connecticut, the son of John Dunbar, a Congregationalist minister, and Temperance Hall. Dunbar’s father embedded in his children strong religious beliefs. However, these beliefs caused Moses in later years to end his relationship with his father. Little is known about Dunbar’s educational background. When he was fourteen years old, his family moved to Waterbury, Connecticut, and perhaps there he obtained his early education....

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Howard, Martin (1725–4 or 24 Nov. 1781), Loyalist and chief justice of North Carolina, was born either in Rhode Island or England. Since his father, Martin Howard, Sr., was admitted as a freeman of Newport, Rhode Island, in 1726, it is probable that Howard was born and grew up there. His mother’s name is unknown. At least one biographer said he was educated at an Inn of Court in London, but he is not listed in Jones’s ...

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Leonard, Daniel (18 May 1740–27 June 1829), lawyer, Loyalist, and chief justice of Bermuda, was born in Norton, Massachusetts, the son of Ephraim Leonard, an ironmonger, and Judith Perkins. His family had enjoyed social and political prominence in southern Massachusetts for more than a hundred years, their wealth having come from the iron industry, which they established in Taunton, Massachusetts. In 1760 Leonard entered Harvard College and was ranked second among his class. His scholastic achievement merited his selection as a commencement speaker, and he delivered his speech in Latin. Returning to Taunton he practiced law alongside Samuel White, Speaker of the Massachusetts Assembly. In 1767 Leonard married White’s daughter Anna White, who died at the birth of their daughter in 1768. Leonard, like his father-in-law, became the king’s attorney for Bristol County in 1769. In 1770 he married Sarah Hammock; they had three children....

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Ludlow, George Duncan (1734–13 November 1808), judge and Loyalist official, was born in Queens County, Long Island, New York, the son of Gabriel Ludlow, a wealthy merchant, and Frances Duncan. The family was well established in the province, with strong ties to the Anglican church and to the powerful De Lancey political faction. George Ludlow’s younger brother was ...

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Richardson, Ebenezer (1718–?), Loyalist, customs official, and informer, was born in Woburn, Massachusetts. Almost nothing is known of his parentage or early life, but he moved to Boston, Massachusetts, by the beginning of the 1750s. He earned the dubious distinction of breaking out of jail in both Boston (1751) and Cambridge, Massachusetts (1753), in the latter case his offense being the procurement of stolen tools for his brother. Around 1754 he also became involved in a scandal in which he accused the Reverend Edward Johnson of Woburn of fathering a bastard child by his wife’s sister. It was later suggested that the child was Richardson’s own....

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Ruggles, Timothy (20 October 1711–04 August 1795), Loyalist lawyer, soldier, and judge, was born in Rochester, Massachusetts, the son of the Reverend Timothy Ruggles and Mary White. His father hoped he would become a minister, but he preferred the law. He was sworn into the bar at Plymouth in 1733, the year after he graduated from Harvard College. Ruggles soon ranked with the elder James Otis (1702–1778) at the top of the South Shore bar. “His reasoning powers and his legal information placed him among the most able advocates of that day; but his manners were coarse, rough, and offensive; his wit was brilliant, but harsh and unpleasant” ( ...

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Sewall, Jonathan (17 August 1728–26 September 1796), lawyer and Loyalist, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Jonathan Sewall, a merchant, and Mary Payne. Orphaned at the age of three, Sewall was heir to the substantial social and political connections that his family, one of the most important in Massachusetts, offered. However, his father’s financial failures had left him penniless. He was raised by family and friends who made sure that he was prepared for college, and his uncle, Chief Justice ...

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Trowbridge, Edmund (1709–02 April 1793), jurist and Loyalist, was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the son of Thomas Trowbridge and Mary Goffe. After his maternal uncle Edmund Goffe adopted Edmund and designated him his heir, Edmund took the surname Goffe, but he later resumed the name of his father. In 1728 he graduated from Harvard, and in 1737 he married Martha Remington; they had no children....