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Allen, Levi (16 January 1746–16 December 1801), American Loyalist and free-trade advocate, was born in Cornwall, Connecticut, the son of Joseph Allen and Mary Baker, farmers. Though self-educated, Allen taught school in the Hudson River Valley for a year when he was eighteen. Expressing boredom with that sedentary life, he left teaching for the Indian trade in 1765. Over the next four years, Allen and his partner, Peter Pond, the prominent explorer and maker of wildly inaccurate maps, were among the first European Americans to trade in the Miami country. This experience made Allen a lifelong defender of the Native Americans. As he wrote in his autobiography, “Christians have not so much to boast over the American Indians as they Vainly attribute to themselves.” After a competitor in Detroit tried to kill him, Allen moved to the Green Mountains with several of his brothers and cousins in 1771. Allen became a member of the Green Mountain Boys, the militia founded by his brother ...

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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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Auchmuty, Samuel (16 January 1722–04 March 1777), Episcopal minister and Loyalist, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Scottish-born Robert Auchmuty, a judge of admiralty in Massachusetts, and Mary Julianna. He would have been a graduate in the Harvard class of 1742 but dropped out during his junior year. At the encouragement of his uncle, James Auchmuty, dean of Armagh, Samuel prepared for holy orders by reading under the direction of the Reverend Alexander Malcolm of St. Michael’s Church in Marblehead and the Reverend Benjamin Bradstreet of Gloucester. Based on the recommendation of these two ministers as to Samuel’s character and learning, Harvard awarded him his B.A. in 1745 and his M.A. in 1746....

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Bailey, Jacob (1731–26 July 1808), Anglican missionary and Loyalist, was born in Rowley, Massachusetts, the son of David Bailey and Mary Hodgkins, farmers. The details of Bailey’s early education are unknown, but by the age of ten he was able to read and write. Frustrated by the ignorance of the townspeople and a lack of books, he began to devote his leisure time to “scribbling” essays on various topics. One inadvertently came to the attention of the Reverend Jedediah Jewett, pastor of the First Congregational Society, who then offered to tutor Jacob gratis. Bailey matriculated at Harvard in 1751. He depended primarily upon charity for his fees and expenses but successfully graduated in 1755. Bailey then undertook a series of positions as a schoolmaster while preparing for the A.M. degree, which he received in 1758. In June of that year he was approved as a Congregational preacher. He failed to find a permanent parish and continued his precarious career as itinerant teacher and preacher until the end of 1759....

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Barclay, Thomas (12 October 1753–21 April 1830), Loyalist and British commissioner and consul general, was born in New York City, the son of the Reverend Henry Barclay, rector of Trinity Church, and Mary Rutgers. His father was of Scottish and Dutch ancestry, and his mother was of Dutch descent. Both families descended from ancestors who settled in New York and New Jersey during the seventeenth century. Barclay in 1768 entered King’s College (now Columbia) where his father had been a founding trustee. Following graduation in 1772, he studied law under ...

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Bates, Walter (14 March 1760–11 February 1842), Loyalist, was born in Stamford, Connecticut, the son of John Bates and Sarah Bostwick, farmers. The fifth of eleven children, he was raised in an Anglican family at a time when Congregationalism was the colony’s established religion. He was sixteen years old when the Revolution broke out, moved frequently during the war years, and left for Canada at age twenty-three....

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Joseph Brant. Engraving by J. R. Smith after a painting by George Romney, c. 1776. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZC4-4913).

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Brant, Joseph (1743–24 November 1807), Mohawk chief and captain in the British Indian Department, also known as Thayendanegea, was born while his family was in the Ohio country, the son of Peter Tehowaghwengaraghkwin and Margaret. His father died shortly after Brant’s birth, and he may have had several stepfathers, one of them the influential Brant Canagaraduncka, from whom Joseph Brant took his name. His mother’s family appears to have been prominent in the Mohawk town of Canajoharie. Brant is reputed to have gone to war as part of the Mohawk contingent allied to the British in the French and Indian War. His sister ...

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Brown, Thomas (27 May 1750–03 August 1825), revolutionary war soldier and superintendent of the Southern Indian Department, was born in Whitby, England, the son of Jonas Brown, a shipowner and alum manufacturer, and Margaret Jackson. Captain Cook, the celebrated explorer, was a near neighbor during Thomas Brown’s youth. After several voyages to America on his father’s ships, Brown decided to seek his fortune on Georgia’s newly ceded lands above Augusta in 1773. With the financial support of his father, Brown recruited seventy-four indentured servants in Yorkshire and in the Orkney Islands and sailed for Georgia in August 1774. A second contingent of the same number followed a year later....

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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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Butler, Walter (1752–30 October 1781), Loyalist officer, was born in Butlersbury (now Fonda, N.Y.), the son of John Butler, a British Indian Department officer and interpreter, Catharine Bratt. Butler’s childhood years were spent in the Mohawk Valley of Upper New York. As a member of a prominent family in an age of profit and preferment during the Johnson regime, he enjoyed status and privilege. His father was closely connected to the omnipotent ...

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Coffin, John (1756–12 June 1838), Loyalist and British general, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Nathaniel Coffin, the last receiver general and cashier of His Majesty’s Customs at Boston, and Elizabeth Barnes. Coffin attended the Boston Latin School and went to sea at an early age. He rose to command of a ship by the age of eighteen, and in 1775 he was engaged to bring a regiment of British troops from England to Boston, which at that time had just broken out in armed rebellion against King George III. Coffin appears to have had no conflict in his loyalties; he brought the troops on his ship to Boston and soon engaged in the war on the side of the king....

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Coffin, Sir Isaac (16 May 1759–23 July 1839), Loyalist and British admiral, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Nathaniel Coffin, the last receiver general and cashier of His Majesty’s Customs at Boston, and Elizabeth Barnes. Born into a family of wealth and social prominence, Isaac Coffin attended the Boston Latin School and then entered the British Royal Navy in May 1773. Assigned to the brig ...

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Colden, Cadwallader, II (26 May 1722–18 February 1797), farmer, public official, and Loyalist, was born in New York City, the son of Cadwallader Colden, a physician, scientist, and colonial official, and Alice Christie. In 1727 the family moved to the Ulster County, New York, estate of “Coldengham,” where Colden received an informal education from his mother. He also learned surveying, which enabled him to serve later as deputy to his father, the surveyor general of the colony. But Cadwallader neither showed the intellectual brilliance that distinguished his father and younger siblings David and ...

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Cooper, Myles ( February 1737–20 May 1785), Anglican priest, president of King's College, and Loyalist, Anglican priest, president of King’s College, and Loyalist, was born near Broughton-Furness, Cumberland County, England, the son of William Cooper and Elizabeth (maiden name unknown). Myles Cooper’s date of birth is not known, but he was baptized probably on 19 February 1737 in Cumberland County, England. In 1753 he entered Queen’s College, Oxford, earning the B.A. in 1756 and the M.A. in 1760. That year he also taught school in Kent. In 1761 he returned to Queen’s College, was appointed chaplain until he was ordained a priest, and published with collaborators ...

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De Lancey, James (06 September 1747–02 May 1804), New York Loyalist, was born in West Farms, Westchester County, New York, the son of Peter De Lancey and Elizabeth Colden, colonial aristocrats. James De Lancey was a nephew of Chief Justice James De Lancey...

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De Lancey, Oliver (16 September 1718–27 October 1785), colonial politician and Loyalist, was born in the province of New York, the youngest son of Etienne (Stephen) De Lancey and Anne van Cortlandt, who established the De Lanceys as a prominent New York mercantile family. The eldest son, ...

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Draper, Richard (24 February 1727–05 June 1774), Massachusetts Loyalist, printer, and publisher, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of John Draper, the publisher of the Boston News-Letter, and Deborah Green. His mother came from a family of official printers in Connecticut going back six generations to ...

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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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Fanning, David (1755–14 March 1825), Loyalist militia leader, was born in the Birch Swamp area of Amelia County, Virginia, where his grandfather, Bryan Fanning, had settled in the 1730s. Fanning’s father, also named David, moved his wife (name unknown) and daughter to Johnston County, North Carolina, where he later drowned in the Deep River a short time before David Fanning was born. Young David’s mother died in 1764, and the Johnston County court appointed guardians for him and his sister, Elizabeth. David’s guardian was Needham Bryan, Jr., a justice of the peace and militia leader who became sheriff of Johnston County in 1771. Apparently Fanning was apprenticed to Thomas Leech, a loom builder and/or millwright. While their personal relationship is not known, Leech seems to have trained the boy well, for between 1784 and 1825 Fanning at various times operated a sawmill and gristmill, trained his son as a millwright, and built at least three houses and a schooner....