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John Taylor, UE, 1753 - 1829

& his mother Christine McArthur, UE

Belleville, Thurlow Tp.

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Pioneers of the Bay of Quinte

Why I am interested in these settlers
While researching the McArthur brothers, I noticed that Christine [McArthur] Taylor was the mother of John Taylor, UE
. The question is; how is Christine related to Charles and John McArthur? To dig deeper, I needed to know more about John Taylor. He was one of the very first setttlers at the mouth of the Moira River.
Randy Saylor, Apr 2014

Use the links to jump up and down this page
  1. Overview
  2. John Taylor family chronological records
  3. Excerpts about John Taylor from the William Canniff Papers
  4. Piece on John Taylor as published by Canniff in 1869
  5. John and Agnes Taylor of Ernestown


1. OVERVIEW
Key Findings
There are two loyalists of the name John Taylor in the Quinte area in the 1780's. The main focus of this web page is on John Taylor, corporal in the Kings American Regiment who settled in Thurlow Tp., at the mouth of the Moira River and was one of the first settlers of Belleville. His second wife is Jane Russell, and sons George, John, William and daughter Mary are identified. The mother of this John Taylor is Christine McArthur who had two other sons Daniel and Cornelius Taylor, both of whom died during the American Revolution. Three sisters of John Taylor; Mary, Nelly and Christine, also came to Upper Canada.

The other John Taylor was a sergeant in the 34th Regiment and settled in Ernestown. He died in 1789. His wife is named Agnes and they had three children; William, David and Allen. Agnes died in 1832. Their son Allen (1788-1819) was a well off merchant in Belleville and involved in building the first Anglican Church. All records associated with this family are grouped below under the heading "John and Agnes Taylor of Ernestown". There is no known connection between these two John Taylors.

The remainder of this Overview is about John Taylor of Thurlow.
Much of what we know about John Taylor comes from his son George and Martha Maybee who were interviewed by William Canniff in 1864 and numerous and detailed contemporary petitions, all of which are presented below.

Birth year
George Taylor "thinks his father [John Taylor] was born on the Hudson, may have been born in Scotland" and was 14 when the Rev War broke out in 1777 so he would be born in 1763. This is in conflict with John Taylor's burial record that states he was 76 when he died in 1829; thus born 1753. Given that John was a corporal in the war then the earlier birth year is more plausible. The age stated in the burial record will be accepted as it was written a few days after he died whereas George's statement in 1864 is 35 years after the fact. The parents of John Taylor are not identified.

John Taylor, Loyalist
George Taylor has this to say about his father during the Revolutionary war years.

[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.

A number of records state that John Taylor was a corporal with the Kings American Regiment (KAR). The KAR was disbanded in St John's, New Brunswick in 1783 and that is consistent with the story that he immediately made his way overland to Sorel, Quebec and eventually to Thurlow.

John Taylor petitions in 1797 and 1807 for land and is successful at receiving 500 acres as a Loyalist and family lands. He receives:
  • 100 acres, Hungerford Tp.
  • 200 acres, Lot 12, Con 4, Thurlow Tp.,   200 Thurlow  1797
  • 200 cares, Lot 29, Con  B Front, Hamilton Tp.
His mother, Christine, receives 200 acres, Lot 7, Con 4, Hamilton Tp.
His sister Mary receives, 200 acres, Lot 4, Con 2, Hamilton Tp.

Mother and brothers and three sisters
Christine [McArthur] Taylor is the mother of John Taylor. Her 1798 petition is the only document that states McArthur as her maiden surname. Christine is still alive in 1807 as stated in a sworn affidavit (21 e) in the 1807 petition of John Taylor. Her son Daniel was hanged for being a secret agent and another son, Cornelius, died later while under Burgoyne's command. The lengthy and detailed story about these two sons is told both in the near contemporary 1807 petition and the later Canniff's notes and repeated again in Canniff's published book in 1869.

Christine died sometime after 1807 and Canniff records this about Christine, "Mrs [McArthur] Maybee says that John Tailor’s mother was 90 when she died. That she was spinning hemp the day she died. That suddenly she stopped & told them to put away the wheel as she was done spinning and soon after died."

The three sisters who came to Upper Canada are named in the 1807 petition; Mary, Nelly and Christine.

Christine McArthur's relationship to the brothers Charles and John McArthur
John Taylor, Capt George Singleton, Lt Israel Ferguson all settled early at the mouth of the Moira River. Capt Singleton married Anne McArthur, daughter of Charles McArthur. Taylor bought 200 acres from Capt Singleton. After Singleton's death in 1789, Anne marries Alexander Chisholm. Chisholm is the JP who certifies that "the above named Christine Taylor has been a great service to our scouts in the time of the war to my knowledge" in her successful 1798 petition where she is added to the UE list. All this suggests a family bond. John Taylor is about the same age as the McArthur brothers, so if there is any relationship, Christine would be a contemporary to the parents of Charles and John McArthur. She could be their aunt. No record has been found to help establish any relationship.

Second wife of John Taylor is Jane Russell
In one of two petitions in 1797, John Taylor prays for family lands stating he has a wife and one child born before 1789. The council treated both of these petitions as coming from the same man. If his wife was a minimum of 18 in 1789 then she was born 1771 or earlier.

Son George, informs Canniff in 1864, that his father "married here a Miss Russell whose father was a U.E. Loyalist. Had 8 children, 5 of whom grew up."

The next mention of a wife of John Taylor in the contemporary record is the 1810 petition where she is named as Jane. John and Jane have a daughter in 1822, Mary Ann Campbell Taylor, who successfully petitions as a DUE in 1840. George Taylor, son of John Taylor, is 49 in 1864, thus born about 1815. Son John successfully petitions as SUE in 1828 and son William Johnston petitions in 1840 as SUE.

In conclusion, the wife in the 1797 petition could not be the same woman, wife Jane, who has a daughter in 1822 as she would be a minimum of 51 if born in 1771 and older if born earlier. Therefore, it is probable that Jane Russell is the second wife of John Taylor and mother of George (1815), John, William J. and Mary (1822).

No petition has been found for Jane [Russell] Taylor seeking land as a DUE.

To complicate things further, Martha [McArthur] Maybee stated to Canniff in 1864 that, "in the neighbourhood lived John Tailor, who was married to a daughter of Mrs Simpson’s, lived on Lot 5 in a log house." This researcher takes the word of son George as more reliable in stating that his mother's surname was Russell. Perhaps Mrs Simpson was a Russell before marriage and a sister to Jane or perhaps John Taylor Jr married a Simpson. [Canniff, G4, p. 26]

John Taylor's land in Thurlow
John Taylor settled for a time on Lot 12, Con 4, Thurlow and son George claims he had trouble with Indians also claiming this land. He bought 200 acres, Lot 5, Con 1, Thurlow from Capt George Singleton about 1789. Lot 4 more or less covered the eastern bank of the Moira and lot 5 was the next lot eastward. It includes the hill and the Taylor log cabin was on top of the hill. He later sold the rear half to Capt John W. Meyers. This land became his homestead and he is regraded as one of the first settlers of Belleville.

Taylor burying ground
John Taylor appears to have established a small part of his homestead as a burying ground and offered it to other families. Thus the Taylor Burying Ground is the first known cemetery in Belleville and Lt Israel Ferguson and possibly Capt George Singleton are the first recorded individuals to be buried there in 1789. In 1864 Canniff visited the site looking for the graves of these two pioneers and wrote, "I have walked over the old Tailor burying ground and vainly wondered where and sighed that I did not [find] where those two were laid and when their peaceful ashes have commingled with mother earth."




2. JOHN TAYLOR FAMILY CHRONOLOGICAL RECORDS
1790
Kingston, 2 March 1790, Memorial of John Taylor, late corporal in the Kings American Regiment, is entitled to 200 acres of land as a Corporal and two hundred acres as his Lordship's bounty, in all four hundred acres of land which he prays for in the 9th Township [Thurlow] in the fourth concession.
[Fold] [no statement made about the decision.]
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V511, T Misc 1788-94, 2, C 2842, image 8

1797 John Taylor
Kingston, 5th Oct 1797, John Taylor, reduced corporal in the late Kings American Regt, lost the use of his right arm, by a round he received in the service, had two brothers that were actively employed, one a Sergt in the aforesaid Regt, on Secret Service and were unfortunately taken & hanged by the Americans, has drawn but 200 acres of land & humbly prays that your Honour will consider the misfortunes and merits of his family and grant him such proportion of lands ....
Kingston, 5th Oct 1797, I do certify the above to be true [signed] P.V. Alstine J.P.
[fold] Recommended 400 acres, Land Book C, p. 243, see petition T26/3 and 19 Feb 1807, T21 bundle 11:6
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V495, T 3/24, 1797, C 2833, image 264

1797 John Taylor
29 Oct 1797, John Taylor, UE loyalist, prays for lands for his wife & one child born before the year 1789.
[fold] Petition for family, Recd 8 Nov 1797, Read 14 Nov 1797, Recommended 100 acres for family lands, see another petition council this day T24 bundle No 3, also see this petition read 19 Feb 1807, T21 bundle No 8, Entered land book C, page 242.
[Note, this petition does not state "of Thurlow" but the notes tying it to the other petitions of John Taylor of Thurlow confirm the connection.]
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V495, T 3/26, 1797, C 2833, image 269

1798 PETITION - CHRISTINE [McARTHUR] TAYLOR
4 Jan 1798, Thurlow, petition of Christine Taylor, alias McArthur, of Thurlow ... that during the last American War had 3 of her sons in the service of Great Britain , wherein 2 of them lost their lives in the said service and your petitioner is UE Loyalist, come to this Province in the year 1789 and never received any lands as yet ... prays ...quantity of unlocated lands ...   Christine her X mark Taylor
Alexander Chisholm certifies that "the above named Christine Taylor has been a great service to our scouts in the time of the war to my knowledge"
[Note added at bottom] It is said the petitioner had a son who was hanged by the rebels for his Loyalty.
[fold note] recommended for 200 acres, re'c 29 Jan 98, 28 Feb [1798] A Entered
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V495a, T4/36, 1797-1799, C-2833, starts at image 498

LOYALIST
Christina Taylor, M[idland] District
Source: UE "Rose list"

1807 John Taylor
Thurlow 2nd of February 1807
The petition of John Taylor of the township of Thurlow … That your petitioner and his two brothers viz Daniel and Cornelius Taylor, Joined the British army during the late war in America so early as the year 1776. Viz, Cornelius join the army under the command of General Burgoyne in the north and Daniel and your petitioners joined the Southern army under the command of Sir Henry Clinton in the south - Daniel in the capacity of Sergeant in the King’s American Regiment and your petitioners as private in the same regiment, commanded by Colonel Fanning.
That in the year 1777, Sir Henry Clinton sent your petitioners brother Daniel as an Express to General Burgoyne, through the American Territories. But unfortunately being surrounded and falling into the rebellious enemy’s hands (after swallowing the ball which contained the Express ) the ever suspicious and outrageous enemy with the assistance of some of their most skillful Physicians, by forcing on him an extraordinary large quantity a emetic , recovered the said ball which contained the express by which means he was condemned to be put to death which he suffered on the gallows. Thus he fell, a glorious victim to his loyalty and good discipline!
That the aforesaid Cornelius Taylor the only surviving brother of your petitioner died in the northern army which was commanded by General Burgoyne, just before they were unhappily captured by the Americans at Saratoga.
That your petitioner the only survivor remained in the British army to the end of said war.
That your petitioner, his mother and three sisters came into the province as early as the year 1788, where they now reside (after you’re petitioners having been wounded in his Majestys service whereby he lost the use of his right arm) and had only the consolation to mourn the loss of their relatives. You’re petitioners supporting his widowed mother, who is for advancement in life and (after so many and severe sufferings) scarcely able to support her scarcely animated body any longer. Those only who have lost such near relatives can (in adversity) justly estimate the value of them when they are gone.
Therefore your petitioner humbly prays that your Excellency will be pleased to grant him his mother and sisters such quantities of land and other privileges as true loyalist sufferers merit and as your Excellency may deem meet and as your petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray.
4th February 1807; Two affadavits sworn before Alexander Chisholm JP
[fold] The petitioner having recived 500 acres, no additional land is recommended. As the Mother & three sisters, viz, Christine the Mother, Mary, Nelly & Christine, have received  an order in Council 17th Nov 1797 for 200 acres of land each, Land Book C, p. 252, 21 Feb 1807

[21c] 9 Feb 1807, I do certify .. John Taylor has been in this township since 1788 and has behaved himself ... and has his mother who is become helpless ... deserves help in her old age. Given under my hand. Alexr Chisholm J.P.

[21e] As Corpl Kings American Regt
John Taylor has received 100 Hungerford
No 12. 4 Con UEL  200 Thurlow  1797
29  B Front  200 Hamilton
OC 13 Nov 1797 400 MC as Loyst K A Regt & 100 family lands
----
His mother is Christine Taylor. She has
No 7.4 Hamilton - OC 13 Nov 1797
& of a sister Mary - No 4.2 Hamilton, same order for which fees are to pay.
See the order in favor of John Taylor of the American Regt of 1 May and 4 Apr 1804

[21f] 5 Feb 1807, Moses Clark J.P. Newcastle, appeared before me ... make oath that he saw Daniel Taylor taken prisoner and executed in the village of Hurly Two Miles out north west from the City of Espos. By order of the American Army. He further declares that he was himself a soldier when the St Daniel taylor was executed and supposed that he was executed for carrying dispatches from General Clinton to General Burgoynes Army - and in the Letters that the D Taylor had gave account of a certain silver ball containing a further Complymin?. After search was made, it could not be found accordingly the Physician apply a Phsick which in operation discharged the Sr Ball. Sworn before me Alexr Chisholm, J.P.
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V496, T 8/21, 1806-1808, C 2833, image 1003

1807 LEASE
York, 18 Feb 1807, John Taylor of Thurlow, yeoman, that lot No 8 in the 2nd Con of Thurlow is a reserve, prays to lease the said lot ...
Recommended ... rent to commence the next quarter after this date ... warrant No 682, 23 Feb 1807
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V510, T Lease 1796-1831, 19, C 2841, image 796

1810 LAND RECORD
#94, 15 Dec 1810, registered 5 Jan 1811, John Taylor and Jane his wife, Thurlow sell 100 acres, E 1/2 of lot 12, Con 4, Thurlow to Stephen Halstead, Thurlow, witnessesss; James McNabb and William McMullen both of Thurlow.
#95, 20 Dec 1810, registered 14 Jan 1811, John Taylor of Thurlow sells 100 acres, W 1/2 of lot 12, Con 4, Thurlow to Daniel Lawrence, Cramahe
Source: Hastings County Copy Book A, AO, GSU 197905, index on this site.

1814 LAND RECORD
#267, 23rd day [film too scratched to read], registered 24 Mar 1814, Capt George Singleton, Thurlow sells a piece of land described by chains and degress starting at "the front post between lots 5 and 6", con 1, Thurlow to John Taylor. The deed was witnessed by Matthew Dies and Israel Ferguson. The deed was proved by the oath of John Ferguson, Kingston, Esq, Simon McNabb, Registrar.
Source: Hastings County Copy Book C, AO, GSU 197905, index on this site.

1816 John Taylor
Thurlow, 2 Aug 1816, John Taylor, Thurlow, your petitioner has been in the province 28 years [ thus came 1788], joined the Royal Standard in the Amercan Revolution ... name appears of the UE list ... resides on Lot 5, Thurlow ... prays a village lot at the River Moira being lot number 10 on the first range 
[fold] Lot no 10 .. been applied for by Mrs Jane McIntosh for someone of her family, she having abuilding in part thereon ... not recommended.
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V497, T 11 1816-19, 4, C 2834, image 328

1817 John Taylor
Belleville, 5th Feb 1817, John Taylor, Thurlow, is a UE Loyalist, has petitioned for lot 10 on the west side of Pinnacle St, town of Belleville. Finding the said lot reserved prays for lot number 9 on the east side of Pinnacle St ...
[oath] Belleville, 2nd Aug 1819, John Taylor Senr, Thurlow [should he be granted lot 9] he feels himself able and determined to erect a framed house thereon ...
[79c] Belleville, 24 Dec 1818, oath before James McNabb JP that John Taylor is a UE and has taken the oath
[79d] Belleville, 26 Nov 1816, James McNabb JP and William Bell JP certify that John taylor Senr, Thurlow, "is an old and faithful subject" ... during the late war ... furnishing means to bear despatches on his Majestys service.
[fold] recommended, order issued 30 Aug 1819
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V498, T 12 1819-20, 79, C 2834, image 834

1819 John Taylor
York, 19 June 1819, John Taylor of Township of Hope, Merchant, that he is a native of this province ... served during the late war ..  taken oath of allegiance ... prays for town lot in Belleville ... never received lot in said town.
[fold] order issued 29 Jun 1819, land book H, p. 169
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V498, T 12 1819-20, 59, C 2834, image 777

1820 LAND RECORD
#532, 8 Jan 1820, reg. 18 Feb 1820, John Taylor Sr, Thurlow sells Front 1/2 of lot 5, Con 1, Thurlow to John W Meyers, merchant.
#551, 15 May 1820, reg 24 may 1820, John Taylor of Thurlow, Innkeeper sells 1/2 acre from lot 5, Con 1, Thurlow to Emily Marsh of Hope Tp.
Source: Hastings County Copy Book D, AO, GSU 197905, index on this site.

1822 Mary Ann Campbell, daughter
Mary Anne Campbell, daughter of John Taylor of Thurlow & of Jane his wife was born on the 13th of Dec 1822 & was baptized the 24th Jan 1823. Thos Campbell, Rector, Dan and Ann Furnival, Godparents
[Note: John was 69 years of age so presumably Jane was a younger second wife.]
Source: St Thomas Registers, Anglican Archives, Kingston, 7-B-1 (personal file 5435)

1828 John Taylor SUE
25 Jan 1828, John Taylor Junr, Thurlow, native of Canada, son of John Taylor, UE Loyalist, Thurlow, 21 years and never received lands.
[fold] recommended, 28 Feb 1828
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V500, T 15/8, C 2835, image 1234

1837 George Taylor SUE
26 Apr 1836, George Taylor, Belleville, yeoman, son of John Taylor, late of Belleville, UE Loyalist. Sworn before Tobias W Meyers, John Cartwright and James Nickalls.
[fold] Has not received lands, recommended, issued 22 March 1838
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V504, T 21/23, C 2837, image 1146

1840 Mary Ann Campbell Taylor DUE
14 Apr 1840, Mary Ann Campbell Taylor, Belleville, spinster, daughter of John Taylor, late of Thurlow, yeoman, UE Loyalist, that she is 21 years of age and has never received lands prays for 200 acres. Swears before John Way Maybee and Benj Dougall
[fold] Has not received lands, recommended, order issued 5 Sept 1840
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V504, T 22/39, C 2838, image 249

1840 William Johnston Taylor SUE
4 Apr 1840, William Johnston Taylor, Thurlow, yeoman, son of John Taylor, late of Thurlow, yeoman, UE Loyalist, that he is 21 years of age and has never received lands prays for 200 acres. Swears before John Way Maybee and Benjamin Dougall
[fold] Has not received lands, recommended, order issued 23 July 1841
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V505, T 1/2, C 2838, image 349, indexed as Tayler.

1829 BURIED
John Taylor of the Township of Thurlow, aged seventy six years [b. 1753] died on Thursday the 15th day of October & was buried on Saturday the 17th day of the same month in the year of our Lord 1829. Thos Campbell, Rector
Source: St Thomas Registers, Anglican Archives, Kingston, II, (personal file 5652)



3. JOHN TAYLOR from the CANNIFF PAPERS

EXCERPT FROM CANNIFF PAPERS, folder G5, p. 20 (22 interviews)
Interview Mr & Mrs Asa Yeomans
Knew John Tailor, was a stern man. Had two brothers hung. He went with a despatch from Quebec to Nova Scotia on foot following the shore all around the Bay of Fundy. Was nearly killing a Walrus. This was told by sailor, whose word was good.

EXCERPT FROM CANNIFF PAPERS , Folder G6 (2) 10 interviews
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 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 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.


EXCERPT FROM CANNIFF PAPERS, Folder G4 71 pages

p. 24 - John Tailor the next settler has a history full of interest.
Mrs Maybee says that John Tailor’s mother was 90 when she died. That she was spinning hemp the day she died. That suddenly she stopped & told them to put away the wheel as she was done spinning and soon after died.

p. 25 - The old racing ground in Belleville was on the Plains on Tailor’s. The meeting place was a clump of plum trees. The entrance just by Herkimer’s where stood a barn.

p. 26 - But in the neighbourhood lived John Tailor, who was married to a daughter of Mrs Simpson’s, lived on Lot 5 in a log house.

p. 27 - Capt Myers bought his land of J. Tailer [Tailor]. Tailer had not yet taken out a deed consequently the first deed was to Myers. He went to York to get it. ..... John Tailor’s house stood on the ground now occupied by Benjamin’s house. It was 18 or 20 feet long

p. 28 - The Tailor Burying Ground and Others

The Settlers at first buried on their own farms. Those who first lost friends first found it necessary to set apart a spot wherein to consign the departed one. Thereafter the more immediate neighbours, instead of appropriating a spot on their own farm, would bury on their neighbour’s farm where already dead were buried.

Thus it arose that here and there along the Bay are to be found burying grounds here and there on the farms. In these rest the war-worn remains of the lived.

How came it that Tailor’s lot was first laid ashes to ashes, dust to dust.

Turn to the history of Jno Tailor and it will be seen that his old mother was unexpectedly, although old, called to set aside her spinning wheel and that soon after her body was to be laid aside for the wheels of life stood still.

This it would seem occurred some time before the terrible losses which came crushingly on the Singletons & Fergusons, consequently when Lieut. Ferguson died his body was placed out far from that of the first one who had died. I have walked over the old Tailor burying ground and vainly wondered where and sighed that I did not where those two were laid and when their peaceful ashes have commingled with mother earth.

p. 66 - Mr Yeomans knew John Tailor well. He was a strong man. Had two brothers hung. He went with a dispatch from Quebec to Nova Scotia on foot following the Coast all around the Bay of Fundy.
(Anyone looking at the map will see what strength? was)

Was very near killing a Walrus.
This fact was told to Mr Yoemans by J Tailor himself whose word was good.
( Sure is knowledge as to the times or circumstances.)
 

p. 25 & 68 - The 1st prizes given in connection with this school were 4 in number, 2 Bibles and 2 Testaments. They were granted the first to H. Meacham, sister Ann, Matilda (?) McNab and Albert Tailor. 

Folder G6 (6) 17 interviews
[Mrs Phoebe Ockerman] 14 - Going down the Kingston road  there was Tailors house on the summit of the hill, nearby opposite was a house occupied by Harris


[Mr Maybee] 28 - Old John Tailor lived in a log house of 18 or 20 feet on the ground where Benjamin’s house now stands. Chisholm lived on the hill. Miers had at first a log mill. Maybee came to Belleville to live in 1806 or 7. Thinks Miers came in 1785 or six, had been living near Trent, he and Capt Marsh lived near together, both cantankerous and were always quarrelling, so Miers came to Belleville and bought of Tailor thinks 100 acres out of the 200 Tailor had drawn;


[Mr Maybee] 29 - Old John Tailor here in Belleville, he says he was a native of York State but Mrs. M says he was born in Scotland. After the Rev War Tailor went to Nova Scotia, afterward, came with four or five others through the woods with knapsacks on back to Quebec then to Kingston to Belleville. Tailor told Maybee this. Tailor was a private soldier, and drew here in Belleville 200 acres, lot number five, joined in N.Y. He would not fight for the Congress. Thinks Tailor had lived here 7 or 8 years before Captain Meyers. Captain Meyers owned a batteaux, which was run by Jacob Steiners and down the bay to Montreal, carried produce at one time.


30 - Mrs. Martha Maybee --- born McArthur, aged 74 next April (Born in ’91) at Schuthen?  ---  now Brockville. Her father’s name was Chas McArthur was born in Scotland.  Died in 1827 at Presque Isle --- brought to Belleville and buried in Tailor’s burying ground. 


30 - Capt. Singleton had also drawn 400 acres in Thurlow so hither the whole party[,] 3 men and wives removed and settled on the place between Bleekers and John Tailor’s on the Front 200 acres.  Built a comfortable log house --- length of 2 logs --- was divided into 2 parts one of which was for a trading house with the Indians (Mrs. Maybee knows not whether Tailor had then settled in Belleville).


31 - Ferguson was buried in the Tailor burying ground (Tailor was no doubt the first settler about Belleville, Include the fact that upon his ground is the burying ground goes far to prove that. Yet according to the custom of burying on the farm it would be that whoever lost a friend first might commence the establishment of a burying place to which all the neighbours would thereafter go. W.C.).  Old John Tailor of Belleville had with him his mother and grandmother her mother.  She died at the age of 90.  She was spinning hemp the very day she died, 2 hours before, she suddenly stopped, told them to put away the wheel as she was done spinning and so died.  She it is likely was the first person white buried in Belleville.  This history was told to Mrs. Maybee by her aunt and thinks it occurred between 1780-90.


32 - John Tailor there lived down the Kingston road about seven miles, and kept tavern[?], He lived here about five years till the close of the war.


EXCERPT FROM CANNIFF PAPERS - Folder G6 (8) 189 pages

29th Nov. 1866  Mrs Harris

p. 153 - Also Wallbridge had a nursery from which orchards were spread. It was just by where Sheriff [George] Taylor now lives. Leavens also had a nursery by where Balfour? now lives.




4. HISTORY OF THE SETTLEMENT OF UPPER CANADA - by Wm. Canniff
There were a good many of the name of Taylor among the loyalists residing at Boston, New York, and New Jersey. They were all in the higher walks of life, and some filled high public stations.  One family consisting at the time of the rebellion, of a mother and three sons, has a tragic and deeply interesting history.  For many of the particulars, I am indebted to sheriff George Taylor, of Belleville, a descendant of the youngest of the brothers.  Sheriff Taylor's father was named John and was born upon the banks of the Hudson of Scotch parents.  

He was fourteen years old when the rebellion broke out. His two brothers were officers in the British army and were employed in the hazardous duties of spies. The only knowledge he has of his uncles is that they were both caught at different times, one upon one side of the Hudson, and the other the opposite side;  both were convicted and executed by hanging, one upon the limb of an apple tree the other of an oak.  John Taylor was at home with his mother upon the farm at Kinderhook.  But one day he was carried off while from the house, by a press gang, to Burgoyne's army.  He continued in the army for seven years, until the end of the war, when he was discharged.  During this time he was in numerous engagements and received three wounds, at least one a sabre wound, and a ball wound in the arm.  
It is stated on good authority, (Petrie) that he once carried a despatch from Quebec to Nova Scotia following the Bay of Fundy.  

His mother in the meantime was ignorant of his whereabouts and held the belief that he was dead or carried off by the Indians.  At the expiration of the war he went to New Brunswick by some means subsequently he undertook to walk on snowshoes with three others from St Johns to Sorel, which he accomplished, while the three others died on the way, he saved his life by killing and eating his dog.  He procured his discharge at Sorel. 

In 1783 he came up the St Lawrence to Cataraqui and thence walked up the bay, as far as the mouth of the Moria River, accompanied by one William McMullen.  Ascending the Moria he chose the land where is now the 4th concession of Thurlow, the “Holstead” farm.  He lived here a few months but the Indians drove him away declaring the river belonged to them.  He then bought lot No 5 at the front of Captain Singleton property which yet bears his name.  John Taylor married the daughter of a UE Loyalist by the name of Russell.  

Two or three years after he came to Thurlow, he visited his old home at Kinderhook, to see his mother, who knew not he was alive.  She accompanied him back to Canada, although hard on ninety years old. She did not live long in her new home.

 Two intimate comrades of John Taylor in the army were Merritt and Soles, father of D.B. Soles, formerly of Belleville.  

Respecting the brothers of John Taylor, the following appeared in the Hastings Chronicle of Belleville 13th November 1861.

“A Spy of the Revolution -  In the year 1776, when Governor Clinton resided in Albany, there came a stranger to his house one cold wintry 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 enquiry of what was his occupation.  The caution and hesitancy with which the stranger 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 a woman of those troublesome times, went quietly into the kitchen and ordered hot 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.  From scripture out of his own mouth was he condemned.  A silver bullet appeared which upon examination was unscrewed and found to contain 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 Free Flag of the 2nd November, 1861, this there is reason to infer, is a special reference to a relative of one of the oldest families in this part of Canada.  John Taylor in his life time, well known to the first inhabitants of Belleville, had two brothers employed upon secret service for the British Government during the American revolutionary war, their names were Neil and Daniel.  At different times they were each apprehended and suffered the severe penalty of the law. A tradition of the Taylor family of this place, agrees in all particulars with the above article, and points to one of the Taylor brothers as the person therein alluded to.”
Source: History of the Settlement of Upper Canada, Dr. William Canniff, 1869, pages 123 - 5



5. JOHN and AGNES TAYLOR of ERNESTOWN
1784
Return of Disbanded Troops and Loyalists, Settled in Township No 3 (Cataraqui)
84th Regiment
John Taylor, 1 man, 1 woman, 1 male under 10, 1 female above 10, 1 female under 10, 4.5 rations pr day, date of certificate 11 Aug 1784, at Cataraqui
Source: Haldimand Papers, British Library, Musters of Refugee Loyalists desiring to settle in Canada, n.d., 1784, Add MSS 21828, LAC, H-1655, B-168, p. 66, on line Heritage Canadiana, image 176

1788 Allen Taylor Baptism
Allen, son of John, and Agness Taylor of Ernestown was baptized Aug 31, 1788
Source: Rev J. Langhorns Register Ernestown , Anglican Archives, Kingston, 4B2 (personal file 5137)

1789 John Taylor burial
John Taylor of Ernestown was interred Dec 11, 1789
Source: Rev J. Langhorns Register Ernestown , Anglican Archives, Kingston, 4B2 (personal file 5157)

1790 PETITION - AGNES TAYLOR
10 Aug 1790, Kingston, memorial of Agnes Taylor, relict of John Taylor, late Sergeant in the 34th Regiment ... memorialists deceased Husband has received 500 acres of land, for himself, wife and 5 children, ... improved the same ... prays ... 200 acres of land assigned to her in the 7th township.
11 Aug 1790, certificate granted.
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, V511, T Misc/1 1788-1794, C-2842

1798 PETITION - AGNES TAYLOR
15 May 1797, Kingston, petition of Agnes Taylor, is the widow of John Taylor of the 34th Regt who settled in this Province ... has 3 children, the youngest of whom was born before the year 1789 for whom she has not yet received family lands. ... requests the usual quantity of 50 acres ... Agnes her X mark Taylor
22 May 1797, Kingston, I do certify that Agnes Taylor is the widow of the late Sergt John Taylor deceased and that the aforementioned children were born before 1789., [signed] Thomas Markland, JP
[fold notes] Recd for 150 acres of family lands, entered in Land Book C, p. 276, her sons Davids petition received, 19 Feb 1807, T22, bundle 8
[Note: this petition is indexed incorrectly under Christine McArthur/Taylor]
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, V495a, T3/36, 1797, C-2833, image 308

1812 LAND RECORD - Allan Taylor
#175, 18 Feb 1812, John K Simons, Innkeeper, Thurlow, sells his inn to Patrick Smith and Allan Taylor, both of Thurlow. Patrick Smith and Allan Taylor bought an Inn on the Indian Reserve at the mouth of the River Moira, bounded on one side by the dwelling of Theophiles Nilson and on the other side by the dwelling of "Seldon and Caverly". Signed in the presence of Thomas Sparham Jr. and Thomas Parker.
Source: Hastings County Copy Book B, AO, GSU 197905, index on this site.

1818 Allan Taylor
Belleville, 11 May 1818, Allan Taylor, Belleville, having been granted a town lot  in Belleville and has erected a large two story framed house, desires of obtaining a Park Lot in rear of Belleville to accomodate his mercantile establishment in Belleville  ... prays  .. to grant him a Park Lot on Number 4, 2nd Con, Thurlow.
[fold] Thos Ridout states that petitioner has received both a town lot and a water lot in Belleville. 4Mar 1819, recommended.
Source: UCLP, RG1 L3, LAC, V498, T 12 1819-20, 8, C 2834, image 629
Source: also see V497, T11/28, C-2834, image 450

1819 Allan Taylor
#506, 28 Aug 1819, William Taylor, administrator and oldest brother and heir at law of the late Allan Taylor, deceased sells lot 8, east side of Pinnacle St.
#578, 31 Dec 1819, Thos Coleman sells to Thos MacMurtrie, Thurlow, For 50. 1/10 of an acre being part of Lot 3 (Belleville?) commencing at a part or landmark about 50 feet from the NW corner of Allan Taylor Brewery near to the foot of the ravine thence 40 feet from the N side of the lot belonging to the late Allan Taylor.....from the canal to be cut for the benefit of Captain Thomas Coleman's Mills in the Twp of Thurlow
Source: Hastings County Copy Book D, AO, GSU 197905, index on this site.

1832 BURIED
Agnes relict of the late John Taylor formerly from Scotland, aged seventy six years, died on Tuesday the 31st day of July & was buried on Thursday the 2nd day of August 1832. Thos Campbell, Rector. Present H. Taylor
Source: St Thomas Registers, Anglican Archives, Kingston, II, (personal file 5703)

CANNIFF PAPERS
Folder G6 (6) 17 interviews

[Mrs Ashley - Mary Miers - aged 63 daughter of Jacob Walden Miers] [page] 7

Mrs. Ashley remembers when the first English church was built and Mr Campbell preached the first sermon.  There were very few attendants.  The church was commenced by Allen Tailor who died before it was finished and was buried in the centre of the building.

 

[James Hubbard Meacham, 56] 25 - (On our way passing Mrs Tailor ( I think) Mr Petrie winks? at the widows? and tells an old lady with her? that day after tomorrow he will with her permission come and take a cup of tea with her.)

He afterwards informs me that 45 years ago [1819] the day after tomorrow Allen Tailor died. I think the ? of that woman. It was the same Allen Tailor who built the English Church, until he died which was before it was completed and who was buried in the centre of the church. When the church was pulled down ( I happened to see it falling) the back was allowed to remain and now