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Captain John Harrison

Memorial Of Captain John Harrison Loyalist Claims -
Public Records Office - London, England

Microfilm viewed at South Carolina State Archives, Columbia, SC Rolls 17&18, Vol. 54, Pages 459-468 Prepared by Houston Tracy, Jr.

Note: A verbatim transcript, with added information for clarification appearing in [brackets].

Page numbers appear in (parentheses).

(459) To the Commissioners appointed by Act of Parliament for inquiring into the Losses and Services of the American Loyalists.

The Memorial of John Harrison, late Capt. in the South Carolina Provincial Regiment -- Sheweth --

St. Augustine [British East Florida], 3d Octr. 1783

(460) East Florida Valuation and Appraisement of the Property of John Harrison, Capt. of the South Carolina Royalists now residg. [residing] in East Florida late of Craven County, South Carolina lost by Part he took to support the British Government in the late War with the revolted Colonies in North America, vitz:

Esd. -- 1770 £.

(461) May 11th 1786 - Evidence on the foregoing Memorial of John Harrison The Claimant Sworn

Meml. [Memorial] read&confirmed the Truth upon Oath. Certificates to Loyalty from Lord Cornwallis, Major Genl. [General] Leslie, Col. [Colonel] John Hamilton, Lord Rawdon.

A Native of Virginia resided in the District of Camden, when the Troubles commenced, as a planter upon his own Estate soon after the Declaration of Independence he was called upon to take the State Oath, but did not do it, says in the year 1775 he had the Assocn. [Association] tendered to him and he signed it because he understood that it was for nothing more than to establish a Correspondence at home for the repeal of [long blank space, nothing written] he used to muster with the Americans and bore arms but was never with any party in Opposition to the King–s Troops. On (462) his refusing to take the Oath he was obliged to quit his Plantation and secret himself.

Says he joined the British Troops at Savannah in January 1779, in the course of a few days he was employed by Genl. Patterson to carry Intelligence to the Loyalists in the Country and to hold himself in readiness to join the King–s Army. In June 1780 Lord Cornwallis gave him a Commission as Major Commandant of the South Carolina Rangers - He says his Men were drafted from him in Octr. 1781 into a Troop of Dragoons of which he had the Command - was given to him by Gl. [General] Leslie.

He continued serving with this Troop during the War, on the Evacuation of Charles Town [South Carolina], he went down to St. Augustine [British East Florida]. He receives half pay as a Captain and he is in hopes of getting half pay as a Major - He raised from the 4th June 1780 to Octr. 1783 full 300 Men. The remains of them were drafted into the South Carolina Loyalists - Says he had two Brothers murdered by the Rebels while they were under the small pox on the 14th Decr. 1780 on Account of the part Claimant took they were at a (463) Gentleman–s House near Camden.

He has no allowance from the Treasury. Means to go to the Bahama Islands with his Family now with him in England.

Property - Says his Deeds were burnt by the Enemy - they set fire to his house in Octr. 1780 - he had left them there to the Care of his family.

Says he has no proofs of the Confiscation or Sale of his Property - he thinks it has been Confiscated and he has heard twas in the possession of sevl. [several] people who have suffered by the British Army. Says there was no Incumbrance on his Property - Has no Debts to State - He is desired to procure Proofs of the Confiscation of his Property.

Coll. [Colonel] John Hamilton sworn - Says the first time he saw Claimant was immediately after the Siege of Savannah in 1779 - he came with Intelligence to Genl. [General] Prevost and brot. [brought] (467) about 200 Men to Cambden [sic, Camden] to the Army in June 1780 - Confirms the Claimant having got the Commn. [Commission] from Lord Cornwallis - Says the Claimant from his joining the Army behaved in a very proper Manner and as a spirited Loyalist.

Says he was on the Land on which Claimt. [Claimant] lived in the year 1780 there was a good Crop of Corn - it appeared to be much Cultivated - there was a frame House&Buildgs. [Buildings] thinks the Charge of 20 £ an Acre a moderate one - Says he saw Negroes on the Plantation but can–t say how many there were Cattle and Swine - a good deal of Indian Corn growing on the Plantation.

Says the Claimant was always deemed a very Loyal Man and useful keeping the Country quiet - that he had great influence with the People and a Man of very good Character - Lord Cornwallis had a very high opinion of Claimant.

Nichs. [Nicholas] Welsh sworn - Says Claimant was first acquainted with him in Georgia after the Siege of Savannah - believes from the time he knew him he was very useful and a very Loyal Man - Knew the Plantation (468) Claimant lived on - was on it several Times - There was good Cultivation on it - thinks it was worth 20 or 20 £ pr. Acre.

He saw Negroes and Stock of every kind on the Plantation - can–t say how many Negroes there were.

Claimant again - Says that he don–t know of any person in England from the same part of the Country that can speak to his Property.

James Carey sworn - Knows nothing of the Claimants Property, but believes he cannot return to America with safety.

Wm. Moore sworn - Knows nothing of the Claimants Property, nor whether it had been confiscated.


Submitted by Houston Tracy, Jr.

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