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Dr. William Canniff Papers

10 Interviews - Folder G6 (2)

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William Canniff Papers - Main Page

The pages in this folder are a mixture, some in numbered sets and others by themselves so the page numbers in brackets below indicate the order in the folder. Page numbers not in brackets are as written on the page.

Thanks to Carm Foster and Doug Smith for doing much of the transcription work. Transcribed as spelled with some punctuation added for clarity.
Source: Dr William Canniff Fonds, Archives of Ontario, F1390, MU 492, G6 (2)
Randy Saylor, Feb 2014


Use these links to the numerous interview subjects on this page.
  1. Mrs Bogart - Mary Lazier age 92 on 10th 1864, New Jersey (7 pages)
  2. Mrs Elizabeth Walter Ross born in Kingston 1803
  3. Thomas Goldsmith - Born in York State, Ulster Co, Montgomery town
  4. Susannah Dame born Lucas born in 1800 at Fredericksburgh
  5. Mrs Maybee remembers meeting Capt Myers
  6. Geo Taylor aged 49, Sheriff Co Hastings, born in Belleville
  7. Joseph Canniff aged 66 born in Adolphustown
  8. Mrs Maybee again
  9. Elisha Sills
  10. Patty Martha Dorland Casey, Aged 80 born in Dutchess Co. Nine Partners




[page 1]

Mrs Bogart - Mary Lazier age 92 on 10th 1864, New Jersey or as she said the “Jorsies”

on the 14th Oct 1864 I took express about noon for Napanee. Arrived there some 20 minutes after one. To Dr Grange’s after some waiting and searching, I met him at his door. After some delay I set out with Dr G for Hay Bay, he kindly offering to take me. It was perhaps 2 where we started passing up the street toward the bridge, and under the very beautiful railway viaduct with its graceful arches and abutments. We cross the river, ascend the hill partway turn to the right across the railway track on a bridge. The town is to our right which we half encircle before we are actually with our backs to it. Our road is along the bank of the Napanee River which after it tumbles over the falls, of some 30 feet, I believe runs along in an imperceptable stream in a seemingly muddy bed. I am told that the steamboats could ascend to Napanee. The large schooners do come up for lumber, etc. As we leave the town there is on our left the mansion & beautiful grounds of what was once the abode of Mr Campbell, whose father was an early settler on Hay Bay. The view from here is very fine as well as from many other points in and about Napanee. On the western side of the river is a rocky hill which gives the whole place a picturesque appearance. As we pass along toward the mouth of the river it is seen to widen, and finally it terminates in Mohawk Bay which is an indentation of Hay Bay Quinte, so called from its contiguity to the Mohawk tract of Reserved land - the Township of Tyendinaga


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The land along here although pretty good farming land is not so attractive in beauty; but the water view gradually increased in interest. The road does not lie all the way close to the river; indeed it could not as the land is low and marshy. When the Mohawk Bay is reached the road has ascended somewhat and Mill Point opposite. Bay of Quinte up toward Belleville, Capt John Island, By Island etc present a very pleasing picture. Following the shore we turn to the left and ascend the higher part of the land which from the Bay presents a lovely appearance and which would be a suitable location as far as a bay view is concerned for an old castle, or a new. On the summit of this land we at once have the view of the bay extended and the beauty increased: for beyond to the south west is the commencement of the high shore. As far as the road continues on the summit of the shore the beauty continues equally fine though constantly being varied. The road turned to the left for a while and again the road turned to the shore which is ever kept in view till we then cross the very end of the peninsula which lies between Hay Bay and the Mohawk and Napanee River then passing Clarks ferry we obtain shortly a glance down the bay and up toward Picton. Coming in sight of Hay Bay we can look beyond it to Trumpours Point and the little bay beyond it. We have now reached our place of destination, Mr Nicholas Bogart where resides his mother the person to see when the journey is made. It is now past sun down[.] I had


[page 2]

3)  watched the sun sink in its brilliant golden sea over the “high shore”, and on the clear blue waters of [the] bay come a darker shade while the trees took a deeper brown. The Hay Bay is almost classic in its interest. But what made it just here by Mr Bogarts and Germans to the west and Coles to the east was the recollection of the terrible accident which, although long ago is still so vividly remembered, occurred to a row boat on a bright sunny Sunday morning, when a load of 18 were going across to Quarterly Meeting. The boat started from Coles and to him it belonged. The boat was sound and tight enough at the bottom. But the number in so weighed it down that the water came in where the seams had separated from the edge of the sides. (so tells me Mr Nicholas) Bogart. The bailing dish was lost overboard. When the men saw the water was pouring in they all jumped out to swim and lighten the boat whereupon the women were excessively frightened and jumped up the boat lurched and the water which had already run in assisted to bury the sides under the water so that they all were precipitated in the abyss. These names call toward the old religion about “Matilda Ann John & Jane German[,] Peter Bogart also”[.] Poor Peter was drowned. The spot where the boat went down is directly opposite. The increasing shades of night, and the silver light of the river streaming over the rippling waves begat feelings of sadness. The silvery rippling wave has


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4)  often held requiem along the shore where repose the bodies, in a long row. Mr Bogart entertains us at tea after which as well as a for a short tour before I hold converse? with the old lady. I convey how we pass up to the Hay Bay a few miles. The moonlight view is fine. The two islands rest in a sea of silvery white, beyond is indistinct shores. Our journey was a little tedious and cold. Back to Napanee about half past 11 on freight train, left at about one home in the morning at 3 .


Mrs Bogart although in 95th year is comparatively hale but the head begins to shake with age. She is a short sized person. Possesses nearly all her faculties. Had sore eyes when young and got spectacles but for 30 years her eyesight has remained the same. The spectacles she has on has worn that time. Hearing good.


Came into Canada when about 20 years of age (or 1792) from Johon? Sloal? N.J. was born there, and her father Nicholas Lazier before her (in 1742 by Bible) and he died in 1829. His wife was born (I am not sure whether this is Lazier or Bogart  W.C.)


Mrs Bogarts father, Mr Lazier, came in with the whole of his family consisting of wife 7 boys & 2 girls. They started in the fall were a month on the road. At Schnectady detained about a week until they built a batteaux. The family had a supply of provisions to last the journey, They also had a lot of kettles for making sugar, they had heard that plenty could be made in


[page 3]

Mrs Bogart

5/  Canada.  They had also a churn full of honey.  Also a lot of are in gause such as is used for the manufacturing of fanning mills.  Mr Lazier was a fanning mill worker.  At Oswego they were questioned as to the use of the kettles whether the honey was for sale & what use therein? was to be put to.  Convinced that they all were for family use.  All were allowed to proceed.  The journey from Oswego to Kingston the boat bord? incurred a good many dangers.  At one time when a wind came up they had to row for life into stony island.  There were at Kingston perhaps 20 or 30 homes.  Journeying up the bay from Kingston the first day made Brisceaus; [Briscoe] the 2nd day Van Alstine’s, 3rd day arrived at Hay Bay.  Stopped on a farm between John Canniffs & Bradells [Bardells].  Stayed here till towards the following spring.  Then removed to 6th town, where the whole family settled, all along the shore.  Her father paid to Tobias Ryckman for 200 acres $25.00.  Also bought 400 acres more, doesn’t know what was paid.  Heard her husband speak of the scarce year.  Had heard him say he would have jumped over the house for enough of bread to eat once. Says the scarcity was due to the fact that fear - lies kept back what should have been distributed to the settlers.  Thomas Dorland was


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6/  blamed and some blamed Philip Dorland also (something about pork seen in the Bay) . Knew Van Alstine he had 3 sons and a daughter.


One year after the coming in was married to Abram Bogart. A negro wench and a boy came in with her father. The boy was given to her after she was married as she had no children. Her husbands father one of the very first settlers. There was the parents and a son and daughter. The daughter was married before they came into Canada, in New York. The three came in by way of Nova Scotia and New Quebec. Remembers the following families that accompanied them Huycks, Velleau, Capt Maybee, Ratting [Rattau?], Coles (Dr Coles), Sherman, Baltis, Peterson, Loyce. Husband(?) who had owned a saw mill at home was not contented until he had one., built one in 6th town soon after he came (thinks this was her brother W.C.) but perhaps not.


Has had 9 sons & 2 daughters  John, Nicholas, James, Lewis, Gilbert, Peter, who was drowned, Cornelius, David, Abram. Husband born 1767 died 1847.


Knew of no doctor when first came


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7/   Mrs Bogart

into Canada. The first she knew was Dr Chamberlain. Then Dr Dunhoury? after he retired from preaching, who married a Miss Detler [Detlor]. ?ide (Playter’s History) Losee was the first preacher she heard then Dunham. Langhorn was here before him was married by him. He was a curious old man, very fleshy, met him in 1812.


Talking with Cornelius Bogart about the accident on Hay Bay. He remembers the day well. It was a beautiful morning. A little lad passing by the farm yard of the Germans they were squirting milk at him. His His mother was fixing his brother. It was after breakfast. She was tying his neckerchief when there came a knock at the door. He went himself to the door but no one was to be seen. This was afterwards regarded as a warning (!)


[page 5]

Sept 6th 1864  Mrs Elizabeth Walter Ross born in Kingston 1803

Fathers name was Frances Boselly, a Lower Canadian. Mothers maiden name was Mary Howell was born in Penn. Her father, an Englishman by birth, came to Penn after marrying. Was there during a part or whole of the Rev war. Took part in it, was a spie. Had 4 or 5 horses shot under him. Returned to England, forgets the year. Came to Canada when daughter Mary was about 14. He tarried at Kingston. Then lived at Fort George, Lake Erie. He died during war of 1812. Has early recollections of Kingston. At first the principal business was done near the old Fort, which the French built. Remembers playing on it Remembers going raspberrying in the woods where now stands Fort Henry and also Frederick. Saw the American Fleet in 1812. Lived one street from Water Street, went with mother where could see the firing. A carter was passing with ammunition told them they were in danger. There was not much firing. They might have taken Kingston, indeed where K now is. Lot 24 is now all woods.


Herchimers nose - Point so called because the rocky point of land sticking out bears a resemblance to a mans nose.


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Sept 1864  Looking at the patent deed  of lot 18 where the Methodist Chapel was first built. “Grant Wm Ross Half an acre in Belleville in the Midland District. Recorded 7th January 1819.”


In the margin is “Entered with the auditor 31st Dec 1819” By that it would seem that the application was made in the latter part of 1818.


The second deed conveying half of this lot to Joshua Turnbull. “William Ross to John Turnbull acre 1824[“]


A third deed conveying the same lot back to Wm Ross by Turnbull “Indenture 14 June 1831 between John Turnbull & Wm Ross. This was the time probably when the second chapel was begun.


The Hastings Chronicle then called Victoria Chronicle was established in 1841 by S. M. Washburn and Sutton who removed from Brockville. Shttp://www.tosc.it/tickets.htm?affiliate=T2C&sort_by=event_datum&sort_direction=asc&fun=erdetail&doc=erdetaila&erid=912678&language=enutton remained about two years and then gave up the business altogether. Washburn continued until 1849 when sold to Elliles[?]


[page 6]

Thomas Goldsmith - Born in York State, Ulster Co, Montgomery town.

Came to Canada 1786 landing at Kingston June 24th. Settled in Adolphustown but soon after removed to Hallowell where he received a grant of four hundred acres of land in the 1st Con about WMG? on which he lived and died aged 90 years.


Route to Canada was up the Mohawk River out Wood Creek and through Nida Lake [Oneida] and then following the Oswego to the shore of Lake Ontario over which they passed to Kingston. While Thomas attempted to drive some cattle through the woods to Cape Vincent being pilotted by a friendly indian. In this he suffered almost every privation hunger fatigue exposure etc. Resting in the ordinary way one night with his head slightly by the root of tree and sleeping very soundly from the fatigue and benumbed from exposure he did not notice the rapidly descending rain which raised the water on the ground till his body was quite covered producing an effect upon his system from which he often said “he was carrying to his grave”.


The part in the service was not immediate that is he was not in the ranks but was rather employed as a spy and his most active service was then carrying information from Gen Burgoyne. He frequently passed the guards of the Continental Army and often after a close search but succeeded in evading detection.


Losses sustained by the war -- Owned one thousand acres of land on which was a flouring mill and two run of stone and a sailing boat launched but not entirely fitted, for the West india trade. The boat was a dead loss to the amount of its value. All the produce of the farm was every year confiscated and paid for in Continental. Cattle and horses were also taken in the same way. All the malleable iron was likewise taken from wagons and mill to make a chain to span the Hudson to prevent boats from sailing up. His neighbours were nearly all strong Congress men and looked upon him with


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a great deal of hatred and catching him out caught him and covered him, horse and saddle with tar and feathers. The farm was sold for a very trifle taking for it Continental money and the few cattle which he attempted to drive to Canada. This money perished in his hands and bringing cattle in an unsettled and uncleared country they are starved to death but one heifer and a pair of oxen.


The main support for the family consisting of four was the little milk given by the heifer. Leeks buds of trees and other leaves were added to the milk to form soup. Fish were in abundance. A barrel of bran served a good purpose for making a kind of cake for a change and to be used on special occasions.


A small log shanty covered with boughs formed the only shelter on the place. David Conger came with the family Thomas being occupied with the cattle.


The above is Stephen Goldsmith’s account of his father Thomas. Stephen is now 86 years old.

[signed] PD Goldsmith


[Note: The Goldsmith account is written in a different hand from that of Canniff and presumably was written by PD Goldsmith.]


[page 7]

Susannah Dame born Lucas born in 1800 at Fredericksburgh, near 2nd town. Father’s name was George, who was born, thinks, in Sandy Hook. Came to Canada with his mother, when 8 month old at the commencement of the Rev war; who escaped from the ruffian rebels with three children. The eldest was left behind in the army (who never came in). She walked most of the way carrying the baby 8 months old. Her feet were so blistered that she that she could hardly walk. (Her maiden name was Swaddle). Her father died about 15 months ago being 73 years old.


The narrator’s grandmother, the one who walked in, before leaving, hid her dishes and pewter plates, them much in use, in the cellar, hoping she might some day regain them which hope was never realized.


The rebels came and drove away all the cattle, horses etc.. Destroyed everything they could not take. She managed to save a good deal of jewelry and fine pieces, which the narrator often saw consisting of gold beads, earrings & rings. These were very valuable.

Her grandfather was in the army until the war closed, when he joined his family in Canada and drew land in 3rd town. Died 5 years after he came in.

The eldest daughter who accompanied her mother in walking had some courage and when the Rebels entered the house fought like a hero to put them out. There was beautiful powder horn belonging to her father, which one of them had got and was going to carry away, but the daughter attacked him and actually took it from him. After the grandfather died the widow married a Bronson, a U.E.L.


The mother of the narrator lived at West Lake, near the Carrying Place. They at first had to go to Kingston to mill by boats down the Bay. They had plenty to eat of Salmon & potatoes, when the 5th towners were almost starving. (Probably the scarce year WC) The narrator heard it spoken of as a famine. They on their way for Kingston with grist were begged to give the people of 5th town some bran. Afterwards, when these people saw better days were on a certain occasion a little insolent a Scotchman (who I suppose had done something for them WC) called them “bran bellies”.


Mrs Dame came to Belleville to live in 1820, was there married to Aaron Dame. One street in Belleville no fences, 3 stores & a tavern. Capt. Myers had a little store in the red building by the mill. Wallbridge had a few goods & Wm Zurck. Son of the one who owned the island for several years was to church only a few times. Methodist, preaching occasionally in a little school house on Church St below Bridge St  on East side. There was the 11 or 12 members.


When first came to Belleville lived on the east bank of river. The Indians often encamped above and below. I saw them before their conversion and after and marked the great change in them. They would get most valuable


[reverse of page 7]

presents, things they could not use, as been given brass kettles etc. After getting these they would drink incessantly until all were gone. while under the influence of liquor would give anything for drink, a gun for a half pint of whiskey.


These gifts were sent up to Belleville and given out. When the Indians began to spree one would be appointed to keep sober and he would put away everything that might be used amiss, tomahawks & ammunition & c were all hidden.  Has often seen John Lunde? stretched drunk. He was married when he was converted. The Massassagua would not steal before conversion, morals were pretty good.


An Indian was drowned when drunk. The narrator seeing him said it was wrong to drink and that was the result. One which stretched his neck and observed that it served the indian right he ought to know better and would next time.


The Mohawk and Massassagua were formerly often at bitter war. Tobias Bleeker told her he saw a roll of birch bark which recorded peaceful events in the history of the Massassagua and principal wars. Among these was account of a bloody battle on Zwick’s Island and a bloody war on an island near the Trent. It was determined fighting. The two parties would go on the island and shove away the canoes and fight as long as there was a combatant. There is yet a hatred between the Mohawks and the Massassagua and no greater offence can be committed then to ask one by mistake if he belongs to the other tribe. The Indians were converted in 1825 or 6.



Mrs Maybee remembers meeting Capt Myers. The scaffold was still up but the family was living there.

The widow of Capt. Ferguson married Cronk in 95 or about a year after she visited Belleville. Mrs Maybee was then at Capt Myers.


Salmon River called Gosippa a Massassagua name. Remembers the first bridge across Moira River. It was like a floating bridge. Bound on string pieces it was carried away. Probably the 1st bridge was built in 1800. Before that crossed in canoes.


Capt Myers had a black slave and called her Black Bet Died with him. Squire Bleeker at Trenton had a slave, gave $300 for her. Sold her for about the same, got tired of her. Sold her to Mrs Simpson of Belleville. She died there. While at Cronks had a child. The father was said to be Bill Washbourne. She grew up to be a smart girl. Nicholas Lazier had a slave woman called Sally, good methodist. She & Cronk were only methodists in 6th town for a long time. Major Van Alstine was much beloved. Was pretty


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June 23/64  Geo Taylor  aged 49 Sheriff Co Hastings, born in Belleville

Fathers name was John Taylor, thinks he was born on the Hudson may have been born in Scotland. His father and mother  were both Scotch. Was 14 years old when the Revolutionary war commenced. His two brothers were officers in the British Army. They acted as spies for Burgoyne, both were caught and executed “one on one side of the river the other the opposite one was hanged to an apple tree the other oak tree” at different times. (The Hudson river is referred to I suppose  W.C.) John Taylor was left at home with his widowed mother, Kinderhook. He was however taken by a press gang  of Burgoynes Army when at the plow. His mother didn’t know it; and was under the impression that the indians had taken him. She did not know where he was, indeed thought him dead until the close of the war. Taylor was in the army for 7 years. Was in many engagements. Had 3 wounds at least, one in the calf of the leg right, caused by sabre, one through the left arm, ball. At the close of the war came to Canada by way of New Brunswick, walked on snow shoes from St Johns to Sorel, 4 others started with him, 3 of whom perished by the way. They all had nearly perished from the cold and hungry. Killed and ate their dogs. Got his discharge at Sorel. This Sherrif T has (copy). Taylor would not draw land in Lower Canada which government wanted him to do.


So came to Upper Canada in 1783. He walked from Cataraqui (Kingston) accompanied by one William McMullen on horseback. They followed the beach along the bay all the way in and out of small bays, and up streams until they could cross it. Had some trouble at Salmon river. He went up the Moira, and located a little above Reeds, but after being there some months, perhaps nearly a year, the Indians in coming down, drove him away saying the river was theirs for hunting and fishing. Taylor then settled in the 4th concession on the homestead farm which he drew land here several years. He then bought 200 acres of Capt Singleton lot no 5. Don’t remember how much he paid for it but sold the rear half for $1000 to Capt Myers. He bought the right to the land and got the patent deed. About this time the Chisholms settled in Sidney on the “Spencer Place”. Thinks Capt Singleton came in the same year. (Taylor may have been in the neighbourhood before for Singleton came for a time; but he could not have been in Belleville before him  as he bought the land from him. W.C.)  


John Taylor married here a Miss Russell whose father was a U.E. Loyalist. Had 8 children, 5 of whom  grew up. Two or 5 years after he came in went to see or get his mother whom he had not seen since he was pressed. He also went about this time to Albany for seed potatoes, crossed the end of the Lake in a canoe, probably went up the Black river. His mother, thinking that all her children were dead, had sold the farm, and had thereby escaped confiscation. John Taylor would not sign off. It is supposed he might as heir at law, claimed the farm, a valuable one, after the declaration of peace; but he would not. The reason may have been that he would not live under the Yankee flag. He detested everything American he had suffered so much from them. His mother came to Canada with him from Kinderhook, and died upwards of 90 and was buried in the family burying ground (probably the first W.C.) Taylor might have drawn a pension but did not. E Murney said he could get it


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for him, but he would not let him. Peter Merrits grandfather was Taylors comrade in the same regiment and also D.B. Sales father. John Taylor died in 1829 buried in churchyard.


Belleville was surveyed in 1816 by Wilmot. The townships had formerly been surveyed by Smith, Wilmot was assisted only by indians, and could dishonestly if he wished without being then detected. It would seem that he did so. Coleman who had bought property on the west side of the river his line ran along the east shore, taking a little of the island at the bend. He gave surveyor Wilmot several parties and made himself otherwise agreeable, and the result was that Wilmot  in coming to survey 9th town, Thurlow, removed the stake, planted by the previous surveyor Smith, 2 chains and  some links further east, the effect of this was that when lot no 3 belonging to Coleman was surveyed, he came in possession of a nice strip of land on the east shore of river where is now the heart of the town. Lot no 4 reserved for the town was also laid out; but when he came to lot no 5 belonging to Tailor he allowed the stake planted  by Smith on the east side to remain, having moved the one of the west, to the same distance he had the first. The result of this is that John Taylor was robbed of a strip of his land. Not many years ago when the sheriff was getting his land laid out into town lots the discovery was made. Much of the property had been held for more than 20 years and was consequently lost to Taylor, he received a few lots. Coleman having been possession of the valuable strip on the west side of Front Street more than 20 years, it could not be taken from him. The above facts were fully exposed at before the court in Belleville by several parties on oaths.


The following is copied from the Hastings Chronicle Nov 13th 1861

A spy of the Revolution. In the year 1776, where Governor Clinton resided in Albany, there came a stranger to his house one cold wintery morning, soon after the family had breakfasted. He was welcomed by the household, and hospitably entertained. A breakfast was ordered, and the Governor with his wife and daughter employed in knitting, was sitting before the fire and entered into conversation with him about the affairs of the country, which naturally led to the inquiry of what was his occupation. The caution and hesitance with which the speaker spoke  aroused the keen sighted Clinton. He communicated his suspicion  to his wife and daughter, who closely watched his every word and action. Unconscious of this, but finding that he had fallen among enemies, the stranger was seen to take something from his pocket and swallow it. Meantime, Madam Clinton, with the ready tact of women of those troublous times, was quickly into the kitchen and ordered coffee to be immediately made, and added to it a strong dose of tartar emetic. The stranger, delighted with the smoking beverage, partook freely of it, and Mrs Clinton soon had the satisfaction of seeing it produce the desired result. True to scripture, out of his


[page 9]

3

by his) own mouth was he condemned. A silver bullet appeared, which upon examination was unscrewed and found to contain an an important despatch from Burgoyne. He was tried, condemned and executed and the bullet is still preserved in the family.

The foregoing article we clip from the Boston True Flag of 2nd November 1861. It has, there is reason to infer, a special reference to relatives of one of the oldest families in this part of Canada.


["]John Taylor, in his lifetime, well known to the first inhabitants of Belleville, had two brothers employed upon secret service for the British Government during the American Revolution; their names were Neil and Daniel. At different times they were each apprehended and suffered the severe penalty of the law.["] A tradition in the Taylor family, of this place, agrees in all particulars with the above article and points one of the Taylor brothers as the person therein alluded to. Abundance of confirmatory evidence, among the old inhabitants of this part of the country, point to the same inference. Com. This accidently came into Taylor’s hands and at L. Wallbridge’s suggestion was given to the Chronicle.



Joseph Canniff aged 66 born in Adolphustown. Father’s name was John. I see an oil painting of him done in “Belleville Upper Canada January 1818” Upon the back of the picture it says, “John Canniff. Born at Bedford, Westchester County, New York 23rd January 1757” This was painted by T. H. Wentworth. John Canniff died 22nd Feb 1843. (According to family Bible which was Joseph’s mother’s formerly Eliz Roblin, born Muller, who was John’s second wife)


John was only 11 when the Revolutionary war broke out and therefore took no part. Phebe Canniff, first wife of John, whom he married in the States, Long Island, died in Adolphustown 17th July 1792. John came into Canada a U.E.L. in time to claim 200 acres for himself and each of his children. Thinks this was about 1778 or 9. settled in Adolphustown. Thinks he came in by New Brunswick, often heard him talk about N.B.. He brought in his cattle at least by Oswego. Drove them through the woods with much difficulty. Several parties came together.


Two years after he settled in 4th town was the scarce year. Has heard him talk about the sufferings of that year. Living on bran bread and what fish could be caught, with greens of cowslops, nettles etc. Told of one man, who came to him and said his family must starve, he had nothing and could catch no fish. “Nonsense”, said John, “Come and I will tell you where you can catch some.” And so he did. The wheat so soon as is milk was shelled in the hand and boiled in milk, which made a more palatable dish.


Mrs Roblin, whom he married came in the same year he did. Moved to Thurlow in 1807. Settled where now is Compton. Nobody lived there then, no one


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nearer than Belleville on one hand and the other Fredrick[sburgh] up the river and McClelland on the Steiner’s place.

There was a road to Belleville along which a waggon could with difficulty pass. Besides his there were only two, one belonging to Ketcheson & Reed.

There was living above Thrasher, Reeds, Ross, Sherod?, Squire Hazelton, Ketcheson. He had been up before he moved and had 7 acres of land and built a saw mill and then a frame house a short distance above where is now the Methodist Chapel. 2 or 3 years years after built the flouring mill.

The mill stones got on Ross’ farm were very good. They are still at the mill.


Prior to that Myers had a mill and also Reed in conjunction with a Yeomans. But the time was when the Reeds had to go to Cartwright’s mill for gristing. Sammie Reed, a year or two before he died told Joseph had carried on his back a bushel and a half of wheat all the way to Napanee River following the Bay shore, a distance of some 40 miles. Generally took him 4 days.


Napanee so called by the Massassagua because of the flour mill erected there. Napanee in their language means flour. The inhabitants often pounded their wheat into flour. In scarce years some had cows, some none.


Thinks his great grandfather came from Ireland and his great grandmother was French. Has heard his father often say so, always understood the Canniffs came from Ireland.



Mrs Maybee

Went to school in 1807 - 8 to Jas Potter. The home stood on the ground where is now the Methodist Chapel First child Mrs Coleman was baptised there by the Rev Mr McDowell of Ernestown. This took place in 1811. Lesslie taught school in the house before Potter.


Leavens, who was Quakerish opened a room in the upper part of his store house, which stood where is now the corner of Front and Market Sts. for

Quaker preaching. Isaac Leavens a Hicksite preached in it. The above mentioned school house was the one which last went to. With her went Ben? Ketcheson.


Mr Turner a Baptist preacher used to hold service in Capt McIntosh’s house. The most of the settlement was up the river in the Reeds. Baptists here. Garry? often preached. Remembers the Methodist conference 1st held. The 1st Chapel was not finished, boards on blocks. Pulpit of rough boards. This was about 1828. The first Methodist preacher was Mr Puffin also Healy. They used to preach at Cal Bills once a fortnight of a week evening. Liked their preaching. Her 1st awakenings Elder Aults and to preach all around was liked, drew a large congregation, but he liked his Brandy.

Mr Ketchum succeeded W C Slocum as Presbyterian preacher. He built the church, because afterwards a tree church ?. [afterwards a Fee cleared many.?] Rev Mr McDowell RC came once a year 1st about 1802 or 3. The church had as 5 ? have Roman Catholics. Preach the, baptize, celebrate Mass


[gloss on left vertical]

This was before the great Eclipse in 1806.

Capt. Singleton was presbyterian, wife also. So was Ferguson.

The 1st Missionary Meeting held in Belleville had about 20 attendants.


[page 10] [Page 1 of this set is missing]

2/ Elisha Sills

the hand cuff and he put. She, when the guard came back making believe that had despatched him she shewed the hand cuff to them.


There was in 1812, when the fleet came to Kingston, a vessel sailed up the Bay as far as stone mills. Saw her. Opposite the upper gap was an old wind mill. On this was a gun. There was a company commanded by Church. They fired a shot at the vessel, which returned it, upon which they all took to their heels. (?)



Patty Martha Dorland Casey, Aged 80 Born in Duchess Co. Nine Partners. Came to Canada when two years old, with father and mother.

Can just remember two circumstances connected with it. The noise of the frogs at Oneida Lake as she supposes, and the red coats at Oswego, the garrison of which was yet held by the British. She was afraid of them, especially at night - thought she would get up on the shelf that was against the ceiling.

They came in batteaux.

Father’s name Willet Casey, mother’s ?Miles. Father born in Rhode Island at New Port.

Settled first at Lake


[reverse of page 10] 

2/ Patty Dorland

Champlain. But when the line was fixed between the States and Canada, he was on the American side. Although had cleared land his feelings were too much British to remain so they started came to 4th town. She was only a child. Her Grandmother Casey came along and died 13 weeks after arriving in 4th town. Her Grandfather had been killed in the war. There was a brother, her uncle, who never came back at the close of the war although British stayed in North Carolina. The Casey Property was all confiscated.


Her Grandmother died at Thomas Dorland’s. Remembers that she one day stroked her hair, which is all does she remember of her.

At first her father lived in a blacksmith shop, her mother cleared it out. There till got a log house built.


Ate a piece of the first beef that was killed in Upper Canada. One of the neighbours lost an Ox by the falling of a tree, her father bought the odd one and made beef of it. Gave a party to eat roast meat. It was a great treat.

Among those present was Mrs Capt. Myers, the Capt may have been present


[page 11]

3/ Paddy [sic] Dorland

She was telling a story about being ship-wrecked. The narrator had been put to bed but she was wide awake listening to the stories.

(something in this story that Paddy wont tell me WC)


Has heard of a family of Scots or Vancotts who in the hard summer had for meals on a large plate, boiled oats. Ate them by hand, breaking them as they ate. Another man came to her fathers to buy flour offering for it Colon??k, a glosy worsted (see obit?). But had flour to sell. The man cried so her mother let him have a few pounds. There was bran on the floor and asked to be let to fill his bag of it, which was done, he took what he could carry in the bag, and started off with it on his back.


Her mother made the first Kearsy blanket that was manufactured in Upper Canada (which I see). Am shewn an old fashioned Pocket Book made by her mother. One of the grandfathers was a French man who escaped from France in the Rev war, to Wales where a welsh - woman. He was a Hugenot.


[reverse of page 11]

4/    Paddy Dorland

Fish Lake is so called from the large number of fish which was found there during the hard summer. The lake was alive with them, and hundreds were thereby kept from starving. Remembers a piece of rye in her fathers fold which being on the sunny side of a ridge ripened early. The neighbours came from far and near to cut some, saw them there cutting as thick as stumps. Was all taken before the grain was fully ripe elsewhere. That year her father raised a barn. The boards for it were sawn with a whip saw. At the raising nothing to eat, but they were treated with egg nog; saw her mother break up a heapen pail full which she had saved for that purpose.


Major Vanalstine was their nearest neighbour. He had 2 sons and one daughter. Remembers when he built the stone mill. Thomas Dorland (her husband suppose W.C.) was settled when father came. Moved in 1804 to Gilbert Dorlands. But one house, then in Picton, on each side of the bridge. But few had settled along the Lake. Knew Dr Dougall who died soon after she came here. After that, with the exception of


[page 12]

5/    Paddy Dorland

Dr Stickny, there was no doct until Kingston. Remembers when the York road ran along the back there, The York road was originally called the Danforth road after the man who constructed it. When came here there was no house till Consecon.


The 5th towners was a company that came out late from England. Were called the late Loyalists.


In the war of 1812 saw the prisoners on their way from Detroit to Quebec. Some stayed there. They asked for milk (doubling up) she said. Yes they should have it. She fed those who had taken them. There were 100 men staying every 2nd night. The officers in the house, the men in the barn. Food many officers.


the British and American fleet met on the Lake not far off. Heard the firing, but they kept a-part. Dr Dorland says there was an understanding between the 2 commanders to sail up and down the lake so as not to meet. They met on Wolfe Island  and arranged. Although Lossing describes it as a great battle. Dr D also says that my grandfather was not entitled to draw land  although he did.


Father had 7 children. Those who did not come in at a certain time were not U.E.L. But some of them drew family land which was 100 and each child 50.


Was shown some old papers “Continental Money” money - one was from the Province of New Jersey one of New York


[reverse of page 12]

6/   Patty Dorland

on one was “Three pounds no 5364 By a law of the Colony of New York this bill shall be received in all payments in the Treasury for Three Pounds  New York February 16, 1761” (signed) S Verplanck(?) It is on paper very thin and torn in two parts. But the following is on thick paper.


Thirty Shillings (no)  

This Bill by Law shall pay current in New Jersey, for four ounces seven - pennyweight and twelve grains of plate

signed Narell Boman, S Smith


On the reverse is Woodbridge in New Jersey. Printed by James Parker. At the top is “To counterfeit this bill is death” There is also the same warning on the New York bill.


Tells of a fight among the first settlers a few years after 1st came. A story go around that the Iindians were going to attack them. The Indians perfectly innocent saw with surprise certain occult movements on the part of the settlers and in turn were frightened. It was a false rumour. (Telling Patty about the occasion when John Taylor was obliged to leave his settlement on Moira river, she thought that very likely it all arose out of that.)