New Brunswick History and Other Stuff

Table of Contents, Rev. November 25, 2015

with 2 comments

This blog will continue to grow, but following is a table of contents so far from the top:

  1. From New Ireland to New Brunswick – Nov. 25, 2015
  2. The Most Gentlemanlike Government on Earth – Nov. 18, 2015
  3. I Love You for Your Plainness – Nov. 11, 2015
  4. Ward Chipman Remembers the Final Evacuation of New York – Nov. 4, 2015
  5. A Reply to “Men of Honor and Probity Run Amok” – Oct. 28, 2015
  6. A Century of Educational Progress in New Brunswick from 1800 to 1900 – Oct. 21, 2015
  7. Notes About the Earliest Public Markets in Saint John, New Brunswick – Oct. 14, 2015
  8. The Provincial Dairy School at Sussex, New Brunswick, 1900 – Oct. 7, 2015
  9. An Account of Nova Scotia in 1743 – Sept. 30, 2015
  10. The Petition of the Infamous 55 – Sept. 23, 2015
  11. Francis Sharpe’s Woodstock Apples – Sept. 16, 2015
  12. The Expulsion of the Acadians, a Military Surgeon’s Diary – Sept. 9, 2015
  13. The New Brunswick Election of 1785 – Sept. 2, 2015
  14. The Many Fires in Saint John, 1784-1877 – Aug. 26, 2015
  15. A Proposal for an Attack on N0va Scotia – Aug. 19, 2015
  16. Fredericton’s Great Flood of 1936 – Aug. 12, 2015
  17. A Letter about the Acadians and the Expulsion – Aug. 5, 2015
  18. Saint John in 1834, Before it was Forever Changed by the Great Fire – July 29, 2015
  19. New Brunswick, No Country for a Mere Gentleman, 1834 – July 22, 2015
  20. Woodstock, the Only Village Between the Green River and Fredericton in 1834 – July 15, 2015
  21. On the Tamiscouta Prtage from Lake Tamiscouta to just above Grand Falls, 1834 – July 10, 2015
  22. Men of Honor and Probity Run Amok – July 1, 2015
  23. By Steamer to the So-Called City of Fredericton – June 24, 2014
  24. A Quiet and Business-Like Little City – June 17, 2015
  25. Rambles Among the Bluenoses in 1862 – June 10, 2015
  26. Edward John Russell, a New Brunswick Artist – June 3, 2015
  27. Provincial Lunatic Asylum, Report of the Medical Superintendent, 1875 – May 27, 2015
  28. The Saint John River and Port Royal in the Early 1600’s – May 20, 2015
  29. What Should We Think of Benedict Arnold? – May 13, 2015
  30. Diphtheria in New Brunswick in the Year 1889 – May 6, 2015
  31. The Official Account of the Destruction of Burnt Church – Apr. 29, 2015
  32. The Exchange Coffee House and Saint John’s First Club – Apr. 22, 2015
  33. The Wigwams and Dwellings of the Gaspesians – Apr. 15, 2015
  34. The Story of Brook Watson – Apr. 8, 2015
  35. Where Stood Fort LaTour? – Apr. 1, 2015
  36. Things This Morning Really Wear the Aspect of War – Mar. 25, 2015
  37. At Portland Point – Mar. 18, 2015
  38. Electrical Power From the Reversing Falls – Mar. 10, 2015
  39. Father Rale’s War – 1722-25; How it Ended – Mar. 4, 2015
  40. What Was the Big Deal About the Marco Polo? – Feb. 25, 2015
  41. Grand Manan to Petitcodiac, in 1786 – Feb. 18, 2015
  42. A Trip From St. John to Fredericton in 1870 – Feb. 11, 2015
  43. A Tour of St. John, N.B., in 1870 – Feb. 4, 2015
  44. Destruction by Fire of the First Cathedral in Chatham – Jan. 28, 2015
  45. Burgan the Burglar – Jan. 21, 2015
  46. Facts and Reasons Against Confederating With Canada – Jan. 14, 2015
  47. Discontent in Early Halifax in 1756 – Jan. 7, 2015
  48. A Trip on the ICR From Bathurst to Miramichi – Dec. 31, 2014
  49. Early Attempts to Introduce the Cultivation of Hemp in Eastern British America – Dec. 24, 2014
  50. Touring Campbellton and Dalhousie, Despite the Mosquitoes, 1876 – Dec. 19, 2014
  51. The Fire of 1837 in Saint John – Dec. 10, 2014
  52. The Cruise of the Rechab – Dec. 3, 2014
  53. A Night in the Deep – Nov. 26, 2014
  54. Robert Foulis (A Misplaced Genius) – Nov. 19, 2014
  55. The City Mills – Nov. 15, 2014
  56. The Brothers d’Amours – Nov. 5, 2014
  57. John Allan’s Revolutionary Mission to the Saint John River – Oct. 29, 2014
  58. Relics of the Acadian Period – Oct. 22, 2014
  59. Some Odd Old Advertisements – Oct. 15, 2014
  60. The Miramichi Fire – Relief of the Sufferers – Oct. 8, 2014
  61. Jonathan Eddy’s Account of the Attack on Fort Cumberland, November, 1776 – Oct. 1, 2014
  62. Which of These Two is the Wisest and Happiest? – Sept. 24, 2014
  63. Fredericton Bridge, a Prophetic Writing – Sept. 17, 2014
  64. A Speech to Distinguished Persons of Stake and Consideration – Sept. 10, 2014
  65. Building an Education System From Almost Nothing – Sept. 3, 2014
  66. Cape Tormentine to the Baye des Chaleurs in the 1600’s – Aug. 27, 2014
  67. The Customs of the Mi’kmaq in the 1600’s and Before – Aug. 20, 2014
  68. Two Documents Relating to the Fenians in New Brunswick – Aug. 13, 2014
  69. The Lazaretto for Lepers in Tracadie, 1862 – Aug. 6, 2014
  70. Thoughts About the Augustine Mound at Metepenegiag Mi’kmaq Nation – July 30, 2014
  71. What am I Bid for This Pauper? – July 23, 2014
  72. Trouble at Madawaska, 1831 – July 16, 2014
  73. The Great Fire at Saint John, June 20, 1877 – July 9, 2014
  74. The Poor Fellows Shook as if They Would Fall to Pieces! – July 2, 2014
  75. How to Build a Logging Camp in Around 1850 – June 25, 2014
  76. Risen from the Ashes, Phoenix Square in Fredericton – June 18, 2014
  77. Rocks and Water, Magnificence and Squalor; St. John in 1876 – June 11, 2014
  78. Moncton as Seen by a Journalist in 1876 – June 4, 2014
  79. Events Leading to the Caraquet Riots of 1875 – May 28, 2014
  80. A Dramatic Account of the Miramichi Fire – May 21, 2014
  81. Saint John in the Early 1840’s – May 18, 2014
  82. A Note to Subscribers, and a Memorandum for me – May 14, 2014
  83. The Myth that Kerosene was Invented in New Brunswick – May 7, 2014
  84. A Church with Military Boots and Fixed Bayonets – Apr. 30, 2014
  85. An Opening Salvo in an Ongoing Argument – Apr. 23, 2014
  86. May living worms his corpse devour – Apr. 16, 2014
  87. He don’t look any better than some of our own boys – Apr. 9, 2014
  88. The Disputed Territory Between New Brunswick and Maine – Apr. 2, 2014
  89. Navigation on the Saint John River – Mar. 26, 2014
  90. Shepody as a Hot Investment Opportunity, 1868 – Mar. 19, 2014
  91. To Her Majesty, RE: Reciprocity, 1853 – Mar. 12, 2014
  92. Diary on the Tobique, 1851 – Mar. 5, 2014
  93. Growing up in Fredericton in the 1820s and 1830s – Feb. 26, 2014
  94. Travels From Eastport, Maine, to Fredericton, 1851 – Feb. 19, 2014
  95. The Saint John General Public Hospital, 19th Century, Part 2 of 2 – Feb. 12, 2014
  96. The Saint John General Public Hospital, 19th Century, Part 1 of 2 – Feb. 5, 2014
  97. The Story of the Great Brothers – Jan. 29, 2014
  98. A Trek up the Tobique, and Onward to Bathurst – Jan. 22, 2014
  99. Summer Tourists. A Manual for New Brunswick Farmers – Jan. 19, 2014
  100. A Trek from Grand Falls to Campbellton, 1862 – Jan. 15, 2014
  101. A Trek From Taymouth to Boisetown, 1862 – Jan. 12, 2014
  102. Capt. William Owen’s Journal, Campobello, 1770-71 – Jan. 8, 2014
  103. The Founding of Campobello Island – Jan. 5, 2014
  104. New Brunswick Roads and Railways, 1855 – Jan. 1, 2014
  105. Grand Manan – Dec. 29, 2013
  106. The Shipyard Fire in Saint John, in 1841 – Dec. 26, 2013
  107. Christmas as it Was in Saint John, in 1808 – Dec. 22, 2013
  108. The Saint John Grammar School – Dec. 18, 2013
  109. William Wishart Blasts the New Brunswick Education System, 1845 – Dec. 15, 2013
  110. The Diary of Sarah Frost – Dec. 11, 2013
  111. Pŭlěs, Pŭlowěch′, and Beechkwěch (Pigeon, Partridge, and Nighthawk) – Dec. 10, 2014
  112. The Government of New Brunswick, 1837 – Dec. 4, 2013
  113. The Whales and the Robbers – Dec. 1, 2013
  114. The Ashburton Treaty – Nov. 27, 2013
  115. Glooscap and His Four Visitors – Nov. 24, 2013
  116. The Pioneers of Saint Stephen – Nov. 20, 2013
  117. The Adventures of Kâktoogwâsees; a Tale of Ancient Times – Nov. 17, 2013
  118. The Asylum at Saint John – Nov. 13, 2013
  119. The Liver-Colored Giants and Magicians – Nov. 10, 2013
  120. Smuggling Between Calais and St. Stephen – Nov. 6, 2013
  121. The Two Weasels – Nov. 3, 2013
  122. A note to subscribers – Oct. 30, 2013
  123. The European and North American Railway, 1862 – Oct. 30, 2013
  124. The Origin of the War Between the Mi’kmaq and the Kwěděches – Oct. 23, 2013
  125. Trouble on the Line: The Early Telegraph in New Brunswick – Oct. 16, 2013
  126. The Invisible Boy; Team′ and Oochigeaskw – Oct. 9, 2013
  127. Transportation to and from Fredericton, 1841 – Oct. 2, 2013
  128. The Boy That Was Transformed Into a Horse – Sept. 25, 2013
  129. McAdam: Notes From the Early Days – Sept. 18, 2013
  130. The Magical Food, Belt and Flute – Sept. 11, 2013
  131. European & North American Rly. Staff, 1861 – Sept. 4, 2013
  132. Glooscap and the Megumoowesoo: A Marriage Adventure – Aug. 28, 2013
  133. The Loss of the Royal Tar – Aug. 21, 2013
  134. Robbery and Murder Revenged, Plus a Grand Falls Story – Aug. 14, 2013
  135. The St. John River From Below Fredericton to the Reversing Falls – Aug. 7, 2013
  136. A Proposal for a Wooden Railway – July 31, 2013
  137. ‘On the Early History of New Brunswick’ – July 24, 2013
  138. The Maugerville Settlement, 1763-1824 – July 17, 2013
  139. 1930 Circus Train Wreck Near Moncton, N.B. – July 10, 2013
  140. Horses or Oxen? Pick one – July 3, 2013
  141. The St. John River; Andover to Fredericton – June 26, 2013
  142. Origins of Some Place Names on N.B.’s Eastern Shore – June 19, 2013
  143. The St. John River; Grand Falls to the Tobique – June 12, 2013
  144. Gabriel Acquin – June 5, 2013
  145. The Seigniories of New Brunsiwck – May 29, 2013
  146. An 1841 Trek up the Oromocto River – May 22, 2013
  147. Fredericton’s Exhibition Palace, and Bears in N.B. – May 15, 2013
  148. Murder on Diamond Square Road – May 8, 2013
  149. Acadian Historic Sites in New Brunswick – May 1, 2013
  150. John C. Tracy’s Book, Part 5 of 5 – Apr. 24, 2013
  151. John C. Tracy’s Book, Part 4 of 5 – Apr. 17, 2013
  152. John C. Tracy’s Book, Part 3 of 5 – Apr. 10, 2013
  153. John C. Tracy’s Book, Part 2 of 5 – Apr. 3, 2013
  154. John C. Tracy’s Book, Part 1 of 5 – Mar. 27, 2013
  155. A Retrospective Look at Saint John – Mar. 20, 2013
  156. The Wreck of the England – Mar. 13, 2013
  157. The First Decade of the 1800’s in St. John, N.B. – Mar. 6, 2013
  158. St. John’s Poorhouse and Workhouse – Feb. 27, 2013, Rev. Sept. 9, 2015
  159. New Brunswick Scenes From an Old Book – Feb. 20, 2013
  160. Nice Pictures From Another Old Book – Feb. 13, 2013
  161. Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick, Part 2/2 – Feb. 6, 2013
  162. Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick, 1845 – Jan. 30, 2013
  163. The Works of W.O. Raymond – Jan. 23, 2013
  164. The Year of the Fever – Jan. 16, 2013
  165. Hanged for the Theft of 25 Cents – Jan. 9, 2013
  166. Reversing Falls – Pictures – Jan. 2, 2013
  167. Christmas as it was in 1808 – Dec. 25, 2012
  168. Nice Pictures From an Old Book – Dec. 19, 2012
  169. The Saint John Bridge Collapse of 1837 – Dec. 12, 2012
  170. The First Road Bridge Across the Reversing Falls – Dec. 5, 2012
  171. The Mystery of the First Lizzie Morrow – Nov. 28, 2012
  172. The First Murder Trial on the River St. John – Nov. 21, 2012
  173. The March of the 104th Regiment in 1812 – Nov. 14, 2012
  174. Partridge Island – Nov. 7, 2012
  175. Fredericton’s First Bridge Across the Saint John River – Oct. 31, 2012
  176. 1816, The Year Without a Summer – Oct. 31, 2012
  177. Winslow to Wentworth, 1781 – Oct. 31, 2012
  178. Oops! An explanation – Oct. 31, 2012
  179. The Saxby Gale of 1869 – Oct. 31, 2012
  180. New Brunswick’s Third Town in 1838: Saint Andrews – Oct. 31, 2012
  181. Fredericton and York County in 1838 – Oct. 31, 2012
  182. The City and County of Saint John in 1838 – Sept. 26, 2012
  183. The St. Andrews and Quebec Railroad – Sept. 19, 2012
  184. The Studholm Report of Saint John River Pre-Loyalists in 1783 – Sept. 12, 2012
  185. Caleb Jones. Further RE: Ann, otherwise known as Nancy – Sept. 5, 2012
  186. The Wreck of the Martha – Aug. 29, 2012
  187. The Early Settlement of Maugerville and the Sheffield Parsonage Dispute – Aug. 22, 2012
  188. Lieutenant Governors of New Brunswick to Confederation, Part 2 of 2 – Aug. 15, 2012
  189. Lieutenant Governors of New Brunswick to Confederation, Part 1 of 2 – Aug. 8, 2012
  190. The Morrow House at French Lake, N.B. – New Information – Aug. 1, 2012
  191. Sound by Glen Glenn, Revision 1 – July 25, 2012
  192. Ann, otherwise known as Nancy – July 18, 2012
  193. The Fire of October 7, 1825 – Beyond the Miramichi – July 11, 2012
  194. Lemuel Allan Wilmot – July 4, 2012
  195. The Great Fire at Miramichi, October 7, 1825 – June 27, 2012
  196. Robert Rankin in New Brunswick – June 20, 2012
  197. Who Owned the Mill at Tracy, New Brunswick? – June 13, 2012
  198. Signatures of Sunbury County Ancestors – June 6, 2012
  199. Daniel Wood’s Log Cabin, and Little Field Barn at French Lake, New Brunswick – May 30, 2012
  200. Rusagonis and George Garraty – May 23, 2012
  201. Epitaph Transcriptions from a Collection – May 16, 2012
  202. Central New Brunswick Gravestones from a Genealogy – May 9, 2012
  203. Nashwaak River Pictures with Stewart Family Connections – May 2, 2012
  204. More Sunbury County Photographs from a Collection – Apr. 25, 2012
  205. An Indian Burial Ground at Oromocto; and Coal Mining on the Oromocto River – Apr. 22, 2012
  206. “Days of Old” by Katherine DeWitt and Norma Alexander – Apr. 18, 2012
  207. The Wood Cemetery at French Lake, New Brunswick – Apr. 11, 2012
  208. James Glenie in New Brunswick – Apr. 4, 2012
  209. Four Generations of the Stewart Family on the Nashwaak River – Mar. 28, 2012
  210. Three Generations of the Mersereau Family in New Brunswick – Mar. 21, 2012
  211. Three Generations of the Smith Family of Sunbury County, New Brunswick – Mar. 14, 2012
  212. Three Generations of the Wood Family of French Lake, New Brunswick – Mar. 7, 2012
  213. New Brunswick Education in 1883 – Feb. 29, 2012
  214. Riots and Demonstrations in Saint John – Feb. 20, 2012
  215. Making Better Butter – Feb. 18, 2012
  216. York County Place Names, 1896/1905 – Feb. 8, 2012
  217. Sunbury County Place Names, 1896/1905 – Feb. 1, 2012
  218. Stereoscopic slides from Fred Stewart, Part 3 of 3 – Jan. 25, 2012
  219. Stereoscopic slides from Fred Stewart, Part 2 of 3 – Jan. 18, 2012
  220. Stereoscopic slides from Fred Stewart, Part 1 of 3 – Jan. 11, 2012
  221. The Hon. Thomas Baillie: Gone, but not soon forgotten! – Jan. 5, 2012
  222. The Fort at Oromocto, 1780 – 1783 – Dec. 29, 2011
  223. The Great Fire in Fredericton, 1850 – Early Accounts – Dec. 15, 2011
  224. The Morrow House at French Lake, and More – Dec. 8, 2011
  225. The Old Woman House at French Lake, New Brunswick – Dec. 1, 2011
  226. Smith Family Photographs from a Collection, Sunbury County, N.B. – Nov. 25, 2011
  227. French Lake from Before we Remember – Nov. 20, 2011
  228. How Geary became known as Geary – Nov. 9, 2011
  229. Elizabeth (Smith) Secord; N.B.’s First Woman Registered Doctor – Nov. 4, 2011
  230. Phillips Family Photographs from a Collection, Rusagonis, N.B. – Nov. 2, 2011
  231. Mersereau Family Photographs from a Collection, Sunbury County, N.B. – Oct. 30, 2011
  232. Wood Family Photographs from a Collection, French Lake, N.B. – Oct. 25, 2011
  233. Jeremiah Tracy: Pioneer of the Village of Tracy, New Brunswick – Oct. 20, 2011
  234. Two Old Railroad-Inspired Songs – Oct. 16, 2011
  235. Ode to the Oromocto River – Oct. 10, 2011
  236. John Mersereau, Loyalist 2 – Oct. 4, 2011
  237. The Earliest American Railroads and Locomotives – Sept. 14, 2011
  238. The Mersereau Manufacturing Company of Brooklyn, New York, Notes – Sept. 3, 2011
  239. George Morrow of French Lake, New Brunswick – 1801-1868 – Aug. 26, 2011
  240. The Wood Family of French Lake, New Brunswick – Legends – Aug. 9, 2011
  241. The Baptist Church on the Oromocto River in New Brunswick – Aug. 7, 2011
  242. John Wood of French Lake, New Brunswick – 1788-1868 – Aug. 2, 2011
  243. Daniel Wood of French Lake, New Brunswick – 1764-1847 – Aug. 1, 2011
  244. Three Stewarts on the Nashwaak – July 24, 2011
  245. Bunker Genealogy – Five Bunkers – July 20, 2011
  246. Statistics From the 1851 and 1871 Sunbury County New Brunswick Census Reports – July 19, 2011
  247. Historical Development of the Beam Bending Equation M=fS – July 18, 2011
  248. Seth Noble, Maugerville and the American Revolution – July 16, 2011
  249. Columns, the Long and the Short of it – 1729-1900 – July 15, 2011
  250. The Great Saint John Steel Cantilever Bridge – July 13, 2011
  251. The Upper Oromocto River in 1847 – July 11, 2011
  252. Early Glimpses of the Rusagonis Baptist Church in New Brunswick – July 11, 2011
  253. Abraham Gesner’s 1847 Observations of Sport Hunting in New Brunswick – July 11, 2011
  254. It Sounds a bit Too Easy – July 10, 2011
  255. James Buncker – July 10, 2011
  256. Inconsistent Petitions; Changed Self-Interests – July 10, 2011
  257. Abner Mersereau and a Letter – July 9, 2011
  258. Early Glimpses of the Patterson Settlement Baptist Church in New Brunswick – July 9, 2011
  259. The Textile Mill at Geary, New Brunswick – July 8, 2011
  260. Letter of Mi’kmaq’ Chief Pemmeenauweet to Queen Victoria – 1841 – July 7, 2011
  261. New Brunswick in the 1840s – July 7, 2011


John Wood

Written by johnwood1946

November 25, 2015 at 9:08 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

From New Ireland to New Brunswick

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From the blog at

From New Ireland to New Brunswick

General Fox

General Henry Edward Fox

He was to become New Brunswick’s first Lieut. Governor. From Wikipedia

New Brunswick was created as a British province, separate from Nova Scotia, soon after the arrival of the Loyalists in 1783. By July of 1784 Thomas Carleton had been sworn in as the first Lieut. Governor and he arrived in Parr Town in late November. All of this was due to the dysfunction of the Halifax government in handling the Loyalist influx, but that is a separate matter not addressed in this blog posting.

As far as we know, Edward Winslow was the first person to speculate in writing that Nova Scotia would be subdivided. He did this at the early date of July, 1783, and was looking forward to seeing the “most Gentlemanlike” government on earth.

Following are two letters taken from The Winslow Papers, 1776 to 1826, edited by W.O. Raymond in 1901. These outline some of the developing arrangements for the new province, and the scramble for political offices.

The first letter is from April of 1784, and shows that the new territory was to be called New Ireland. General H.E. Fox was expected to become Governor, but he refused to accept unless Guy Carleton would be Governor General over all of the Canadian colonies. Meanwhile, several other appointments were proposed.

Britain was in the midst of elections and final decisions did not come as expeditiously as they might have. By the time of the second letter in July of 1784, the name of New Ireland had been dropped in favor of New Brunswick; Sir Guy had refused the position of Governor General; General Fox and another candidate had both refused the Governorship; and it had finally been decided that Thomas Carleton would become Governor on a temporary basis. It was expected that Thomas Carleton would soon be reassigned to Quebec.

Eventually, of course, Sir Guy came to Canada as Governor General, Thomas Carleton remained in New Brunswick, and General Fox had miscalculated.


Brig. Gen. H.E. Fox to Edward Winslow

London, 14th April, 1784

Dr. Winslow,—In the first place I must talk to you about the last Letters you wrote here: you are too warm, & your idea of the Loyalists and Provincials defending their Lands on the Saint John’s River was by some means communicated to Sir Guy Carleton & at first I believe much displeased him. But everything has been set to rights by your Friends with him.

What I told you in my last has happened. Lord Sydney some days ago sent an express to me, being with my Regiment at Stafford, & offered me the Government of the New Province (which by the way is to be called New Ireland) & informed me at the same time the Government General was to be offered to Sir Guy Carleton. My answer was that my own affairs, in which were involved those of my Nephew, were in such a critical situation that I could not decide for a few Days. This was really the case at that time—besides I wished to know what Sir Guy’s intentions were, which to this moment I cannot find out. I returned to London yesterday & this day informed Lord Sidney, after thanking him for his offer, that if Sir Guy went I should be extremely happy to attend him. Lord Sydney then surmised if no Governor General was sent would I accept of it; which I gave in to provided Sir Guy or myself named the Principal Officers, or at least I should have the power of putting the Negation upon any proposed. All this tho’ not absolutely promised seemed agreed to. As from the hurry of Election no council will be assembled for some days, I asked Lord Sidney if he had any further commands, as I wished to return to my Regiment which he agreed to, saying he would send an express to me when anything was determined on.

I own, unless Sir Guy Carleton goes out Governor General, I do not see much prospect of its going on well. I think myself they will tempt him to go out, tho’ he at present does not seem inclined to it. At any rate if I go Judge Ludlow goes as Chief Justice, that I settled with Lord Sydney this morning, & from conversation I have had with Sir Guy Carleton—Upham, Blowers, & Chipman will be thought of. There is also an out of doors report that if Sir Guy Carleton does not chuse to go, the Government General will be offered to Gen. Vaughn or Christie, in either which case I stay at home. The one I know nothing of, the other I know too well. But this I believe is not true.

In case of this [my acceptance] taking place, I trust to what you promised me when at Halifax of your acceptance of the Secretaryship of the Province which I have accordingly settled with Sir Guy Carleton.

Notwithstanding all this, do not be too sanguine, as there are a thousand things may happen to prevent the intended arrangement taking place, particularly if Sir Guy Carleton does not go out as Governor General. I for one am determined not to go without him, unless everything is so arranged before hand as to have a prospect of success. I had omitted in the beginning to tell you Col. Carleton is thought of as Governor of Quebec, & Musgrave for Halifax as soon as an appointment equal to the present Governor’s abilitys can be found for him. If all this takes place I certainly go in good Company.

Billy Bayard has opposed all this & has handed about an intended memorial for all Loyalists to sign requesting Governor Franklin might be appointed Governor; but it met with so little encouragement from them that he dropped it the second day having got only three or four names to it. For Heaven’s sake keep the whole of this Letter to yourself, & be not too sanguine or violent untill something is determined upon: I will write to you the moment it is.

If we go out to you I believe I shall commission you to buy me some Hovel at Maugerville for immediate use. There was Perlie’s, near Glasier’s house, a little below Peabody’s: if he would sell I think would do very well. But nothing of this can be thought of at present.

Yours most sincerely,

[There is no signature, but the letter is endorsed as from Gen. Fox.]


Ward Chipman to Edward Winslow

London, 9th July, 1784

My dear Ned,—I intended to have devoted this forenoon to writing to you but have been interrupted so frequently that I am now confined to half an hour. Coffin, however, who is in the same lodgings with me, has been writing to Mr. Townsend, and between us both you will get what intelligence there is to communicate. I shall confine myself to one subject, the only one which has taken up my attention for a long time, as it so materially effects us both, I need not say it is the new Government on the River St. Johns. We were all very much disappointed in Col. Fox’s refusal of the Government—his reason was that he found a Governor General was to be appointed, tho’ not immediately, and that Sir Guy Carleton, was not going out, he would not therefore risque there being appointed a General Vaughan or any other officer under whom he would not serve, which would create a necessity of his resigning perhaps within a very short time of his going out. He therefore told Lord Sidney he would accept the office if Sir Guy was to be appointed Governor General, otherwise not. The Government was then offered to your Friend Col. Musgrave, who declined it assigning the same reason and making the same declaration to the Secretary of State.

Col. Carleton, Sir Guy’s brother, is at length appointed and has accepted. The arrangements so far as they are known are, Judge Ludlow Chief Justice., Col. Putnam1, Major Upham, and Lt. Col. Isaac Allen, Judges on the same bench: Jonathan Bliss, Attorney General, and Sir Guy told Mr. Watson that I was put down as Solicitor Gen’l. Had either Fox or Musgrave accepted the Government, you would have been the Secretary with the concomitant offices. But Mr. Odell has this appointment under Col. Carleton. I am at a loss indeed to determine whether it would have been prudent for you to resign your half pay, as you must have done, for the emoluments of that office. You I understand are one of the Council. I am now to tell you a secret not by any means to be again mentioned, which I have in confidence from Mr. Watson this morning, with permission to mention it to you only, in a very private letter. Col. Carleton’s is but a temporary appointment, he goes on Governor to Quebec and will take Mr. Odell with him, both Sir Guy and Mr. Watson say that Col. Fox will yet succeed him as Gov’r of New Brunswick2, (the name of our new Province) from which I conjecture, I think with great reason, that Sir Guy is still to be the Governor General. Sir Guy and Mr. Watson have concluded upon your appointment as Secretary in that case, if worth your acceptance, which will be in some degree ascertained by Odell’s experiment of it. The place was unsolicited by Odell, but you may easily conceive that Sir Guy felt himself obliged to provide for him3 and there was no other way of doing it. I believe Judge Sewell will be one of the Council. I confess for myself I am not a little disappointed with respect to the office of Att’y General, tho’ Bliss is certainly a very good Fellow, but as he was receiving a pension of £150 per ann. this is saved to Government by appointing him—there will be no salary to the Solicitor General, at least none that will be equivalent to my half pay. I shall therefore depend upon my practice for support.

Col. Carleton kisses the King’s hand this day on his appointment, and I should suppose the whole arrangements will he out in a few days and that we shall all be hurried off very suddenly. Col. Ludlow talks of taking passage in the Adamant, which sails the 1st Aug’t. It is not improbable that I shall accompany him. Tell Mr. Townsend I shall in that case certainly avail myself of his very friendly offer of Quarters for a few days. I have failed altogether in my expectations from the Board of Claims, the business of which remains unnoticed to this moment. I have expended nearly all my money, and am heartily sick of this country. We shall at least have a good society and live chearfully in our new Government if we are poor. Won’t my half-pay Agency pursuit come to something in time?

I am called upon for my letter. Remember me most particularly to your Father and the Girls, tell them they will now soon be delighted with my warbling some of the most improved airs. To your dear Mary and the little ones make my most affectionate remembrances, there is no circumstance about which I feel more anxious than seeing them, a pleasure which I hope will not be much longer delayed. I presume Murray will be on his passage very soon don’t fail to send him. Coffin will take care of him in my absence. Adieu, God Almighty for ever bless you prays most sincerely,

Your friend,


Tom4 incloses the Papers under cover to you and Mr. Townsend—say to him for me every thing affectionate and grateful.

Footnotes for the Chipman letter:

  1. James Putnam of Worcester. Massachusetts. He was a graduate of Harvard in 1746. He was banished and proscribed on account of his loyalty. He was considered by his contemporaries as an exceedingly able lawyer. John Adams was his law student and boarded in his family. He died at St. John in 1783, aged 64 years. There is a handsome monument over his last resting place in the old grave yard. In the Putnam vault are buried also the elder Jonathan Sewell and the Rev. George Bisset.
  2. This plan evidently was seriously contemplated, but was never carried into execution.
  3. Jonathan Odell seems to have been one of Sir Guy Carleton’s secretaries.
  4. The reference is to Thomas Aston Coffin.

Written by johnwood1946

November 25, 2015 at 9:07 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

The Most Gentlemanlike Government on Earth

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From the blog at

The Most Gentlemanlike [Government] on Earth

Ward Chipman

Ward Chipman

A friend of Edward Winslow from the earliest days.

Edward Winslow (abt. 1746-1815) said that he was mortified when he wrote the following letter to Ward Chipman in July of 1783. He had been born into a prominent Massachusetts family with roots going back to the Mayflower. He had graduated from Harvard and was ready to take on the responsibilities of being a Winslow. The American Revolution was formative in determining his future, however, as he was a strident Tory. He fought for the British during the Revolution and became muster master general of the loyalist forces.

His family’s financial position had been tenuous for some time, and was not in a good condition when he evacuated Boston for New York. By 1783, the war was totally lost, and Edward Winslow and family did not have sufficient resources to go to England. He therefore became an agent for Loyalist regiments and evacuated to Nova Scotia.

Winslow soon relocated to Saint John, and his reference in the attached letter to New Brunswick becoming a separate Province is perhaps the first time that that speculation was ever put to paper. The letter describes his vision for the Province as “the most Gentlemanlike [Government] on earth”, and it was he who also said “by God! we will be the envy of the American states.”

Living in a camp at Saint John, and mortified or not, he was busy ‘networking’ his substantial connections in support of his ambitions for himself and what he hoped would be the new Province.

This letter is from The Winslow Papers, 1776 to 1826, edited by W.O. Raymond in 1901.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Edward Winslow to Ward Chipman.

River St. John’s 7th July, 1783.

That’s a good fellow Chip, a long letter from an old friend received in this desert is like a glimpse of glory. I know Tom Coffin would write if he could. I am sorry you’d so much trouble in effecting the business I wrote you about by Ryersen. I did not intend it.

You have gratified me much by the account given me of my father’s situation and the state of the family—would to God the comfort they now enjoy could be continued to them. Is there any chance my dear Chip that recompence will be made to the Loyalists by Government? Will it be possible for my poor father to obtain only a sufficiency to support him in England for a little time? If so will it not be best for him to go there? What can I do for them, Chip? I should merit the curse of all of ’em were I to give the least encouragement for them to come here. The mortifications which I experience and laugh at would be insupportable to them; the whole country is crowded, the towns are expensive beyond belief, they can’t live on rations, nor in sodded huts. If it is fashionable or necessary to make representations of sufferings I am sure you will do it for him. Suppose he obtains any part of a single thousand pounds it will be enough. He can get nothing here; it will be half an eternity before any man will be worth a third of that money. Perhaps in a few years the present savage appearance of this country may in some degree be changed and I may offer them an asylum. Penny’s good sense enables her to see this business in a proper light. You must settle it among you; they all know that if anything is done for me in England it will be for their benefit,—I’ll have done with this subject. * * *

I saw your new appointment with pleasure. May your consequence be increased until your ambition is satisfy’d and then I think you’ll be a pretty consequential fellow. I like your scheme of going to England. I’ll not be too sanguine in my opinions—I do think this province ere long will be a good stage for abilities like yours to exhibit upon. The present Att. Gen.1 here is an ignorant harmless nincompoop and the Sol. Gen.2 is a great lubberly insolent irish rebel, indeed I do not find that there’s a man of any consequence in the profession. Sterns is the most so (really) at Halifax. When the variety of people who compose your garrison have scattered about in different parts of this province, I think a gentleman may find an eligible situation and in a good society but this is a subject that shall be treated on largely and deliberately—at present I am in a camp where one man is laying out roads, another building boats, &c.

You wish to know what are my views, plans and prospects. In a few words my faithful friend, In the situation I left, my views were at an end, I had no plans and my prospects were blacker than hell. I knew that the appointment of agent to the Provincials would give me consequence here and furnish employment for my mind. Hitherto everything has happened as I could have wished, the reception I met with from the General, Governor, and all the great people in the country was beyond my most sanguine expectations, it has revived all my old spirits and I have adopted a style that would astonish you. There’s not a man from this quarter that presumes to solicit from head Quarters without my recommendation and I have effected some business for meritorious characters which has afforded me vast pleasure. Our old friend Marston has felt the benefit of a pointed application to the Governor without his knowledge. He is appointed a chief Magistrate, or a kind of Governor-General, at Port Roseway and is a confidential man with Governor Parr. I am particularly gratify’d at this circumstance for various reasons.

We have just begun our operations in the land way, the people who have arrived here are prodigiously pleased with the country and I shall certainly soon be possessed of a good farm, and if we’ve our half pay I will be more than comfortable. I have left those sweet little ones in as comfortable a place as is in this province, made so by own exertions. I found a house and hired it for £6 a year and I’ve taken a lease for two years. I added two rooms and a chimney and have now a spare bed room at your service, ’tis just on the bank of a most beautiful river immediate opposite the town of Annapolis. I have left Thomson’s William3 to superintend, and mother Silk4 & little George. We have plenty of poultry, a good garden and such a variety of fish as you never saw, and I have built a tolerable boat. So much for the family.

On this side of the Bay of Fundy I am speculating pretty largely. I have taken three town lots on the West side of the river5 in the most delightful situations I ever saw, for myself, Major Coffin and Col. Ludlow, on condition to build a tenantable house on each within six months. Coffin’s is already in some forwardness and my own and Major Murray’s will soon make a figure. Should our farms in the general division fall at a distance from this, we cannot lose by the exertion; the houses will cost but a very trifle, and those who are obliged to come without such covering prepared will be glad to pay the expense. I am at present at Murray’s Quarters in a township which we shall lay out for the provincials and we have already cut a road from his camp to the river about three miles.

I will not aim at a description of this business. We cut yesterday with about l20 men more than a mile thro’ a forest hitherto deemed impenetrable. When we emerged, from it, there opened, a prospect superior to anything in the world, I believe. A perfect view of the immense Bay of Fundy on one side, a very extensive view of the river St. John’s with the Falls, Grand Lake (or Bay) and Islands on the other—in front the Fort, which is a beautiful object on a high hill, and all settlements about the town with the ships, boats, &c., in the harbour—It was most positively the most magnificent and romantic scene I have ever beheld. Our town is to be on the slope of this hill, and you shall have a house on it whether you ever see it or not by Jupiter. I shall look in future with extreme contempt on your poetical descriptions of your pussy, meandering, serpentine, purling rills, &c—any man, woman or child that has not a stranguary can make such in a minute—but on viewing a prospect like this any Infidel would acknowledge that only God could effect it.

Thank you for the articles you sent me. I am infinitely obliged to Tom Coffin for the encouragement about the seine and boat, and to Gilfillan; you cannot imagine of how much consequence such things are. Should the post be abandoned this fall I am sure I shall not be forgotten. Send me anything in the world that you can procure without expense. With respect to cash Chip, I have done monstrously well— the tour to Halifax was d——d expensive, but I am determined to be repaid. The 30 Guineas I received of you and 25 out of the abstract, has hitherto answered my purpose for building houses, boats, supporting family and travelling expenses, and as I am now in a wilderness I shall make out till my own subsistence is due.

I have received a letter from Fred Philips of an old date, I cannot find from that or yours if he is determined to go to England or not. I promised him letters, he knows how interested I am in everything which concerns him. I have postponed sending them because it is my intention, as we survey the different townships and cruise in the different rivers to form as elegant a description of them as possible with the assistance of a most able hand who is retained in my service for that purpose, these I shall transmit to Great Britain to my Lord Percy by him, and I am determined at all events to distinguish myself by proposing a plan which affords the grandest field for speculation which ever offered. Take the general map of this Province (even as it is now bounded), observe how detached this part is from the rest, how vastly extensive it is, notice the rivers, harbours, &c., Consider the numberless inconveniences that must arise from its remoteness from the metropolis and the difficulty of communication. Think what multitudes have and will come here, and then judge whether it must not from the nature of things immediately become a separate government6, and if it does it shall be the most Gentlemanlike one on earth. Suppose you and he go to England after being provided with the necessary facts, can you be better employed than in a solicitation of this kind properly authorized. You know how Industrious I can be if I please and you may rest assured I will pursue this project with unremitted attention. The people on the other side [the Bay] are already jealous, even the Gov’r fears it evidently, we have therefore been perfectly snug yet. Tell him (Fred) that the want of subjects to render my letters acceptable and of consequence was the only cause of my not forwarding them before. Fanning is expected every hour here and I could have wrote only to Innes a formal letter of recommendation which would not have satisfy’d my mind. I wish to be more serviceable to a man I love like him, I intended to have wrote him, I can’t—do you give him a share of this. Acquaint him that White Stocking’s colt is very ugly —to make up for it she has been maneuvred by Tartar—of course she will have an elegant one next time, this has been performed by consent of Council. She has never been saddled since she landed at Nova Scotia and is fatter than he ever saw her. The other is a very good horse.

Tell Tom Coffin that Miss Fanny was safely delivered of sixteen puppies—twelve of which were so handsome that a court martial that sat the day I left Annapolis, at which Lt. Col. DeLancey presided, could not agree to destroy any of ’em.

I wrote my father and sisters from Annapolis so lately that they must excuse me now.

Coffin, Brinley, Townsend, Chew, ‘tother Fred’7, everybody, will believe that I remember them affectionately.

I had a letter prepared for Mr. Watson which, from a circumstance that has lately taken place, I must defer sending by this conveyance. Say everything to him for me that gratitude can suggest and to that best of friends Dr. Bailey, they will readily believe that I have little time to spare. I shall write Col. Ludlow a few lines—there is no Providence if he suffers.

Next time you write me inclose a short note to Pop — it will gratify her. If you had ever an esteem for her it will increase when you know with what perfect propriety she has conducted.

Adieu, my friend—



Ed. Winslow.

This letter is a monster in every respect. My Boy is not dead, thank Heaven, & Paddock8 has gone to see him.


  1. The attorney general here referred to was Richard Gibbons. He was appointed chief justice of Cape Breton December 24, 1784, and Sampson Salter Blowers succeeded him as attorney general of Nova Scotia.
  2. The reference is to Richard John Uniacke. See collections of the Nova Scotia Historical Society, vol. ix, p. 83.
  3. Colonel Benjamin Thompson’s servant or groom. See letter under date 2nd August, 1783, in this book [not included in this blog].
  4. Evidently a black servant, probably a slave.
  5. These lots were on the west side of St. John harbor, in Carleton.
  6. Anticipating the formation of a new Province on the north side of the Bay of Fundy. The idea seems to have originated with Edward Winslow, who suggested it to Colonel Fox. This letter contains the first known reference to the subject.
  7. The names of these officers will be found among the correspondence of Edward Winslow. “T’other Fred” is explained by the fact that there were two captains named Frederick Phillips, one of them in the Loyal American Regiment and the other in the King’s American Dragoons. Both were Winslow’s intimate friends and associates during the war.
  8. Doctor Adino Paddock was formerly of Boston. He was a son of Major Adino Paddock, who planted the Paddock elms in Tremont street, Boston. In 1779 he went to England and studied medicine and surgery. Returning to America he became surgeon in the King’s American Dragoons. He settled after the War at St. John, N. B., but later went to St. Mary’s in York Co., where he died. A son and grandson bore the name of “Adino”; both were physicians. The grandson, Dr. Adino Paddock, died at Kingston, N. B., in August, 1893. There was consequently a continuous practice of 110 years by the three Adino’s, father, son, and grandson.

Written by johnwood1946

November 18, 2015 at 8:01 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

I Love You for Your Plainness

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From the blog at

I Love You for Your Plainness

Georgian Fashion

Georgian high fashion. From ‘The Telegraph’ website, February 9, 2009.

Winslow might have said that she decorated parts which did not require it, and exposed parts which should have been concealed.

Today’s blog is for entertainment, and is part of a letter from Edward Winslow, in Halifax, to his wife in Saint John in 1784. He writes on the subject of women’s fashion. Regardless of changing times, I cannot imagine that Mrs. Winslow would have been happy with Edward’s praise of her cleanliness and lack of contemporary fashion.

This part of the letter is from September 20th. He continued with other subjects on the 21st, and that part is not included here. The letter is from The Winslow Papers, 1776 to 1826, edited by W.O. Raymond in 1901.


Edward Winslow to his Wife

[Contained in small Note Book 3-¾ x5-¾ inches, with stiff cover, containing 28 pages and about 2,500 words. Book marked Vol. VI.]

Halifax, Monday 20 Sept’r. 1784

What do I care whether it’s the fashion for men to write long letters to their wives or not. No man on earth looks with more sovereign contempt on what’s called Common Customs than I do. In matters where my own feelings are concerned I will not be shackled by any of the rules which bind the generality of mankind. I have said that in my present state of inaction I cannot enjoy a pleasure equal to that of writing to you, and that’s sufficient reason for writing. If other men do not experience the same sensation they have not the same degree of sensibility nor the same degree of affection. Let such inanimate wretches be content with writing. “These few lines come hoping &c.” I’ll enjoy the superlative satisfaction of scribbling whole volumes. If from the feeble state of mind or body they should be dull or unentertaining, they will at least serve as proofs of the sincerity & fervency of my love for you.

Mentioning the word fashion at the beginning of my letter has unaccountably brought to my mind a dissertation upon the present Fashions in England which was read me from a letter from my celebrated friend Mrs. Coare (formerly Nancy Lechmere) and which does so much credit to the present taste that I will endeavor to give you as much of it as I can recollect. She says “The prevailing rage is to be perfectly plain. Caps are not worn, except by elderly ladies, and feathers & all such kind of Trumpery are totally laid aside. The younger ladies wear plain, deep crown’d hats. Muslin & Chintz Gowns with plain long muslin aprons are worn by all ladies of taste: even the first Duchesses dress in this way except at Court, and it will probably continue until winter when silks will be substituted. Hoops are entirely out of fashion.” How different is this from the fantastic figures which have been exhibited here this summer. Some of the females who have lately arrived at this place from London, seem to exert all their talents to daub and finify those parts which require no ornament and to expose to view such other parts as nature seems to intend that every modest woman should conceal.

An immensity of False-Tops False Curls, monstrous Caps, Grease, Filth of various kinds, Jewels, Painted paper and trinkets, hide and deform heads of Hair that in their natural state are really beautiful. Rouge & other Dirt cover cheeks and faces that without would be tolerable, whilst the unfortunate neck and breasts remain open to the inclemency of the weather & the view of the World. The other parts of Dress are equally preposterous. A long party-colored Trail flows over a Hoop (that covers a rotundity of Hips sufficiently large without it) and sweeps along the ground behind, while the poor legs and knees are chilled with every blast which blows.

Take a woman rigged in this way, & she certainly is the most ridiculous thing in the world. Were the indulgence of this Fancy (as it’s called) confined to those women that [5 lines missing.] Butalas, it pervades other orders of women. Examples like Mrs. W— & Mrs. B— will be followed by the vain and giddy as well as by the vicious, perhaps in some instances without evil intentions. Among the errors which are committed in this world there is none more unpardonable than that of a modest woman’s attempting to imitate the [5 lines missing.] I have often thought and I believe it to be an absolute fact, that men (altho’ they have not so much cunning as women) have more knowledge of the foibles of females, than the ladies have of theirs, and I certainly know that a strained attempt to exhibit or rather expose their charms is among the number of faults for which they are ridiculed with extreme severity.

Could a lady of good sense mix Ineog (sic), in a party of licentious and debauched men & listen to their conversation on this subject, she would be convinced that even these hold in derision such foolish women as attempt to gain their affections by putting on an appearance of wantonness & indecency. And she would also find that libertines reverence the external shew of innocence and virtue and (altho’ they do not stammer at blasphemy and treason) they cannot speak with disrespect of a truly amiable & modest female character. If then these ladies are the objects of disgust with sensible men and the objects of ridicule with men of pleasure—their conquests must be confined to old Fools—young Fools & very empty coxcombs—and these are surely not worth the trouble.

Now I think I hear you exclaim—“What the deuce can have put my husband all men in the world into this train of writing.”

I’ll tell you my precious Wife. First, negatively—(as the clergy say): It is not from an idea of increasing your abhorrence of such flirts. That I know to be impossible. I sometimes think your Ladyship errs a little upon the opposite extreme to that which I have described. From sixteen years old to the present time you have literally set your Cap at no creature on earth but me. Regardless of Fashion you have only endeavored by uniform cleanliness to make yourself desirable in my eyes, but I am not contented with this. I love you so well that I am always gratified when I see other people admire you, and (if Providence ever puts it in my power) you shall be as much distinguished for the elegance of your dress as you are for your constancy and fidelity.

That vagabond Murray has fairly disconcerted me by his impertinence.

“What are you writing?” (says he).

“A letter to your Mama.”

“What, in that book?”


“You’d better stop your nonsense, I think.”

“Why,” says I, “don’t you think Mama will be glad to read a whole book-full from me?”

“I don’t know,” he says, “Too much of one thing is good for nothing.”

Did you ever hear such a varlet? Lest you should be of his mind, I’ll leave off for a little.

Written by johnwood1946

November 11, 2015 at 8:57 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

Ward Chipman Remembers the Final Evacuation of New York

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From the blog at

Ward Chipman Remembers the Final Evacuation of New York

The final evacuation of British troops from New York took place on November 25, 1783. George Washington had demanded that Guy Carleton leave sooner but he refused, since the last of the refugees relied upon him and his troops to remain until they had boarded ships. A fuller description of the evacuation can be found in Guy Carleton, a Biography by Paul R. Reynolds, Toronto, 1980.

Following is Ward Chipman’s description of that day, from The Winslow Papers, 1776 to 1826, edited by W.O. Raymond in 1901. It also outlines Chipman’s activities in London in the days following.

Not many of our ancestors were of the gentlemanly class, or had ambitions equal to Chipman’s or Edward Winslow’s. However, they had lost much, and their scramble for influence was to regain at least some of their previous positions in society.

Evacuation day NY 1783

George Washington Entering New York, November 25, 1783

Library of Congress


Ward Chipman to Edward Winslow,

On. Board the Tryal, off Staten Island

Nov’r. 29th, 1783

My dear Winslow,—I have already written to you previous to the Evacuation of New York, but have received when ashore today at Staten Island your letters of the 9th and 15th inst., for which I thank you very much. I have been a witness to the mortifying scene of giving up the City of New York to the American Troops. About 12 o’clock on Tuesday the 25th inst, all our Troops were paraded on the wide ground before the Provost, where they remained till the Americans about 1 o’clock marched in thro’ Queen-Street and Wall-Street to the Broad-way, when they wheeled off to the hay-wharf and embarked immediately and fell down to Staten Island. I walked out and saw the American Troops under General Knox march in, and was one of the last on shore in the City; it really occasioned most painful sensations and I tho’t Sir Guy, who was upon parade, looked unusually dejected. The particular account of the business of the day you will find in the news-papers which I have enclosed to Blower. I have passed two days since in the City to which I returned upon finding all was peace and quiet. A more shabby ungentleman-like looking crew than the new Inhabitants are I never saw, tho’ I met with no insult or molestation. The Council for sixty days, which is invested with supreme authority for that term, is sitting; what will be determined by them is uncertain, many are apprehensive of violent and severe measures against individuals. I paid my respects to Generals Knox and Jackson, the latter is Commandant of the City; they received me very politely. I had the satisfaction also of seeing General Washington, who is really a good looking genteel fellow. Scarce any of our friends or any man of respectability remains at New York, they are principally embarked for England. I am now on board ship for the voyage. We have a good set—Col. Drummond, who is very civil, friendly and polite to me. Fred Phillips, who is as good a fellow as ever (I wish you had mentioned him particularly in your letter for he really loves you); Gilfillan1 whose factious character you know, and Mr. Sinclair in the civil branch of ordnance, Capt. Reid and two subalterns of the Royal Artillery, 8 in all and I assure you we make ourselves very cheerful. We expect to sail by Tuesday next.

My prospects in going to England are on the whole as favorable as I expected. I have as I mentioned to you, the whole business of the board of claims2 committed to my management, and I am not a little pleased to find that Harrison, who resigned his seat at the board some time before we left New York, obtained a warrant from Com’r in Chief for 20s stg. per day for the time he belonged to it. I think I shall be able to plead this precedent when I have finished the business. Sur Guy has given me a letter of introduction and recommendation to Lord North. Thompson, who plans to pass the winter upon the continent of Europe, writes me he has left a particular recommendation and introduction to me to Lord Sackville, so that on the whole I live in hopes of going to Halifax next year with a bold face. I consider the present by far the most important period of my life, and am determined to exert every faculty to get myself forward. I shall most anxiously expect the letter you promise me by Gen’l F. I have been explicit, be you so also in communicating your views, hopes and prospects. I need not repeat to you that your welfare and happiness is equally dear to me as my own; my principal anxiety is for us to get together again with some chosen friends and I think we should be happy in a desert

I immediately communicated your letters and enclosures relative to Cochran and little Weeks3 to Mr. Watson and Major Upham. Coffin this day tells me this business is satisfactorily settled for both. Greet Mr. Weeks for me and in my name, he is a worthy good Fellow and I both love and esteem him.

I intreat you my dear Ned let me know by every opportunity how you are and what is going forward in Nova Scotia. I shall not lose sight of that as my determined place of resort and shall of course be very anxious to know all the particulars about the settlements, locations, &c, &c.—

To Tom Coffin—indisputably the very best fellow in the world, and to Townsend4 who really loves you and speaks most affectionately of you I refer for all further particulars both of a public and private nature. Adieu my dear Fellow you shall hear from me the moment I arrive in England. God bless you with all good and make you as happy as you desire and deserve, prays most fervently and sincerely, your unalterably devoted & faithful friend,


To Father, Mother and Sisters, say that Chip thinks, dreams and speaks of them perpetually with the warmest friendship and affection.


  1. He was a deputy quarter master general in New York in 1783.
  2. This board was appointed by order of Sir Guy Carleton at New York on May 4, 1783. Its business was to investigate claims for supplies furnished of various sorts to the army. The chairman of the board was Gregory Townsend, assistant commissary general, and secretary to Ward Chipman.
  3. The reference seems to be to Rev. Joshua Wingate Weeks. In the year 1783 he was chaplain to the King’s Orange Rangers, then stationed at Halifax. Before the Revolution he was rector of Marblehead, Massachusetts. At the close of the war he settled in Nova Scotia, where he died in 1804.
  4. Gregory Townsend of Boston was assistant commissary general of New York and president of the board of claims. At the peace of 1783 he went to Halifax. He died there in 1798, and James Putnam and E.B. Brenton were executors of his estate.

Written by johnwood1946

November 4, 2015 at 9:05 AM

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A Reply to “Men of Honor and Probity Run Amok”

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From the blog at

A Reply to “Men of Honor and Probity Run Amok”

Samuel Denny Street

Samuel Denny Street

A spirited New Brunswick lawyer and politician of the Loyalist generation. From the U.N.B. library.

An article was presented in this blog on July 1, 2015, entitled “Men of Honor and Probity Run Amok”. It was written in 1802, and was originally entitledA Statement of Facts Relative to the Proceedings of the House of Assembly …”. The author called himself “Creon”, but this was a pseudonym, as Creon was the ruler of Thebes in the Greek legend of Oedipus. The article was an exposé covering the last two days of a session of the Assembly. A money bill had been passed by the Assembly and forwarded on to the Governor’s Council, who had no authority to amend it. Most of the Assemblymen had then gone home and the remaining few members (not constituting a quorum) then contrived with Council to amend the bill to Council’s liking. Samuel Denny Street was the only, or one of the few, members to remain in his chair to oppose this amendment of the money bill.

Following is another presentation entitled “The Elector’s Mirror or Truth Unveiled, in a Brief Reply to Creon, Author of a Statement of Facts…”, also written in 1802 and also anonymous.

Creon had said that he was a man of observation, viewing events from the gallery during these last two days, when many of the members has gone home  to avoid great expense to the province, and no small inconvenience to themselves in remaining. The present author ridicules all of these words, and infers that Creon was, in fact, Samuel Denny Street. He accuses Street of stupidity, dishonesty, and self-interest in defending the money bill as written to profit the merchant class and to support his own claim to the Clerkship of the Assembly, for which he was paid £50.

The following is an edited version of the ‘Reply to Creon’, being only about half the length of the original.

 _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

To Creon, Author of a Statement of Facts, &c


Had you fulfilled what the title of your book professes, you would have prevented the necessity of this, and perhaps taken one step towards gaining the reputation of an honest man. You have, Sir, excited many doubts in my mind; not respecting anything contained in your production, but whether anyone would so much demean himself as to make a reply.

“Facts,” Sir, which you have disseminated, but awkwardly tally with truth, which has excited serious suspicions! Substantial truth, Sir, is a thing congenial to the unprejudiced mind of man. It offers a rich repast to the ingenuous philosopher, who considers it worthy of the most laborious investigation and strictest inquiry. It is, therefore, extremely surprising, that a “man’s observation” should expect to elude the discovery of a subject of so much inquiry!

Although your mind was not cast in the common mold and, of course, could not have experienced the hardship of stupidity, yet the vast quantity of “light” which you still contain (for I know of no instance in which you have expended any) must show you, and even common minds cannot but discern, the plans of your party. Notwithstanding the artful zeal used, in order to appear clad in all the ornaments of purity; notwithstanding the cordial squeeze, the disinterested sacrifice of private considerations, the anxious concern for the public weal, the truly Christian virtue of loving your neighbor more than yourself, and the comic art of assuming a face for every scene; although to those who would see, you have given blindness, and to those who “had ears to hear” you have said “let them be stopped”. Yet truth has given optics to see through the veil, which, for seven years, has covered a multitude of sins, committed in pocketing the treasures which, upon every principle of justice, belonged to the public. To examine the history of your proceedings is like probing the inveterate sore; the further we proceed the more painful sensations are felt, by the surgeon as well as by the patient.

Your object appears clearly to be, the exculpation of the gentlemen who left the House of Assembly before they were officially dismissed, and to criminate others at the moment of election. We now behold a party of men, whose previous conduct has become obnoxious to serious suspicions, without any answer, attempting to try themselves, imagining that time would not admit a reply, by way of defense,—which lawyers call confessing and avoiding.

You say that “You were an attentive auditor in the gallery and had been informed Tuesday, that all the business of the session was closed.” I would ask how you had been “informed”? Had the Lieut. Governor told you? If you had it from a member it might be incorrect, for the business of Parliament is never known to be done, not even by their own members, till after a message is received from the King, or other Chief Magistrate informing them that he has no business to claim their further attendance. But, Sir, it seems by your first postulatum, that the gentlemen had done all they intended, and determined to stay no longer, let the Governor have what business he might. And, further, that they had so managed what they were willing to leave for the consideration of the other Branch, that they knew it would not be completed.

Your greatest force goes to prove, that this seceding majority expected to have rendered the remaining members incapable of doing legislative business. And it is a known fact that this money bill was encumbered with matter, foreign to its purpose of raising money, in which the Council had equal right with the House to discuss and as this majority knew it to be not only unparliamentary, but inimical to the sense of the Council, it was clearly tacked to the former to defeat its operation. It is proved by the journals of one Branch, that it was agreed, by committees from both Houses at a former session, that the House would give up their silly pretension to the right of combining in the bill, whose object was merely to raise money. But, notwithstanding this agreement, which was no more than consenting formally to be governed by law, the same old trick is played over again, to destroy the hateful money bill, in which I shall show, that most of your present clients were richly interested.

“You were told, too, that it was unnecessary for the whole to remain, at great expense to the Province and no small inconvenience to themselves,” &c. Here are true patriotism and private convenience operating to drive men from their posts, who knew much better than the Governor when their attendance was necessary.

“You, nextly, understood in part, that some great lawyers were of opinion different from some great merchants, (viz.) that any number of members could resolve themselves into a House competent to all those functions, to which, heretofore, thirteen had been thought absolutely necessary.” What a marvel this! that lawyers should be of opinion that men should contrive some way to raise money! And, as it respects the question of numbers, a greater proportion of the whole House was less, than is adjudged necessary in the House of Commons, in England. There, forty members constitute a legal quorum, and there are more than five hundred members in the whole.

Mr. S—t, the hero of your drama, and the object of much whining through the whole, for fear of his losing his fifty pounds, the chief reasoner, and I suppose the chief writer, argues thus logically; “The powers of the House were derived from the constitution, and could neither be diminished or extended by any authority but their own—that ancient usage was the only guide to the proper exercise of the powers vested in them, and was therefore termed the law of Parliament.” Poor sufferer! It brings fresh to my mind the time when he obtained this information! He got it, poor foul, while a prisoner in the revolted Colonies! How can he tell, during such a conflict of reflecting on past sufferings,….having been lately occupied in addressing the Governor for the Clerkship, and still under the apprehension of losing it,….how can he tell but that this very establishment of thirteen was one of their direct steps of rebellion? It was, in revolutionary times, practiced by those who were in open hostility to their lawful Sovereign.

“That a less number were not competent as a Grand Jury to find a bill of indictment at a general session of the peace, against one subject,” &c. The chain is admirably supported! Suppose the Lieut. Governor could not, by his writ, collect more than twelve members, at the next session; a number ostensibly judging their attendance unnecessary, but secretly intending to defeat the business of the session;—could these twelve do nothing? Must the public business of the Province be utterly neglected, because eight or ten men chose to disobey the laws, and obstinately neglected their duty for private purposes?

Whether you, Mr. Observation, are Mr. S—t too is a question, with me, of very little importance. If you be, or be not, it seems equally desirable for you to gain for both the reputation of wits; and, from the specimens you have given, I am much at a loss to determine for which you will be the more successful.

Mr. S—t observes, “Laws were not made for restraining men of honor and probity, but for persons of very different characters. What kind of characters does he allow are obnoxious to legal restraint? We see whom he excuses; men who could in legislative capacity, without breathing, violate a solemn and honorary agreement, made with “men of honor and probity,” on purpose to prevent the passage of the Revenue Bill. No! Mr. S—t, such honor and such probity need no retraining; “but persons of very different characters”, viz. those who would exact justice from crafty meanness, who would compel niggardly treachery to contribute towards the protection of its own base accumulations. The event is the same that was expected. The sweetened accents of public good, the magic cry against lawful rulers, have succeeded to impress prejudices on the minds of the weak and superficial, and while they served to conceal the real plans of the leaders of the party, they cast unmerited censure on those, who only sought the interests of the Province.

The disputes which have devoured most of their sessional time took their rise in the disinterestedness and public spirit of this party’s demanding pay for their services; a step in direct violation to the most ancient usage of Parliament. And what is worse, a step calculated to defeat the success of that detested thing, revenue! This compelled the Council, by Parliamentary decorum, and propriety to return the bill, condescending to assure them, that if they would forward their favorite pay bill by itself, they would give it due consideration. But no! They are bent on the destruction of measures unfavorable to private interests; and to give a pleasant aspect to this determination, they pretend to the propriety of such a step, as a prerogative of which they affect to be very tenacious. The public, by this pretense, are lulled to drowse over the loss of every means of defraying public expense, or of making any improvement, through legislative aid.

Four years, out of seven, this bill is lost under the same pretext, notwithstanding His Grace the Duke of Portland, in his correspondence with His Excellency the Lieut. Governor, had given the fullest information on all Parliamentary questions, which had been subjects of dispute in the House, and by which the House had promised to be directed. But from an apparent determination in the House not to understand sentiments which crossed their depravity, though dressed in the plainest language that words would admit, His Excellency found it necessary in his correspondence, to request frequent communications, varied (as perhaps it was requisite) to the sense of the meanest capacity.

The next subterfuge is a denial of ever having seen the letters from His Grace! and the only circumstance to give the least color of truth, was, although extracts had been carefully handed to every member, (who could read) His Excellency had not made a formal communication thereof to the House. This he was requested to do, to which he willingly complied;—— and hoping that as that was their last and only rattle of amusement, they would be impelled to assume the man and the gentleman! But how seldom are those who are accustomed to do evil learn to do well! And it is religiously true that “Jack will never make a gentleman.”

The burden of your celebrated production is confined solely to the two last days of the last session; and these are subsequent to the whole transaction of guilt which required elucidation. I cannot rid myself of the belief, that many of the preceding transactions will in future be subjects of much closer scrutiny.

You do not tell us why the punctilious Mr. S—t continued to expend his ingenuity in an unconstitutional body; and no reason appears, but to watch his fifty pounds, and prevent the erasure of his name from the Optics. If the remaining members had no right to act, he had no right to oppose; for if one legislative act was illegal, every proceeding one under the same circumstances was void, from the beginning of the illegality. His fifty pounds, therefore, was as safe as though it had been locked his strong box.

The story of this gentleman’s appointment to the Clerkship, is marked with too much incident not to deserve a place in a narration of unaccountable occurrences.

Before the convention of the late session of Assembly, Mr. S—t, counting on the speedy dissolution of Mr. Heddon, the then Clerk of the House, who was extremely ill, and is since deceased, addressed His Excellency requesting the appointment. The House having convened, found, themselves destitute of a Clerk, and they immediately applied to the Governor by message for the appointment of this same Mr. S— t. But the Governor, for certain reasons, appointed and commissioned another. The loyal and polite majority refused to receive him, declaring him not a favorite, and he therefore retired The Governor then fixed on a gentleman, whom he knew £rom his virtues ought to be acceptable to all. But alas! virtue is not a badge to be recognized in pondæmonium. He also is rejected and dismissed! and the argument now is, that the appointment of Clerk is a right of the House, in which the Governor could not interfere. Only observe, two days before, they were requesting the Governor to appoint the fagacious Mr. S—t, and now deny him the right on any influence whatever! Does not this make for consistency? “Samul Denny Street, Esquire,” becomes their Clerk, and heir apparent to the fifty pounds, so fervently voted for, by himself, whose claim thereto is afterwards doubted, by reason of his spurious birth.

P.S. —It is a well-known fact, that the leaders of the party are the principal importers; and that, upon a moderate calculation, by the destruction of the revenue bill they have annually to themselves a dividend of not less than £1000; which, divided by 4, gives £500,—well worth running for!

Written by johnwood1946

October 28, 2015 at 8:34 AM

Posted in Uncategorized

A Century of Educational Progress in New Brunswick from 1800 to 1900

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From the blog at

The following is an abstract of a thesis written by J.H. Fitch for a degree from the University of Toronto, entitled “A Century of Educational Progress in New Brunswick 1800-1900”. It is undated, but the reputable online source indicates that the abstract was written in 1906, and that it is not in copyright.

This blog posting is longer than I would prefer. However, it is a valuable summary of how the New Brunswick school system developed and is a suitable companion to the several other postings in this blog about education in New Brunswick.

Mount Middleton School

Mount Middleton School, Kings County, N.B., 1933

From the New Brunswick Museum, via the McCord Museum

A Century of Educational Progress in New Brunswick from 1800 to 1900

The history of education in New Brunswick falls conveniently into three periods. The first period, from 1800 to 1846, was a time when the schools were being established, and a system of education was developed with a minimum of administrative machinery. From 1847 to 1870 was a period of reorganization. When it came to an end, so also did the effort to support schools by voluntary assessment. The third period, from 1871 to 1900, deals with the development under the free school system.

An effort is made to show in each of the three periods the progress made in education generally, and the origin of New Brunswick’s different types of schools. For the sake of continuity, each type of school is treated separately.

When New Brunswick was founded in 1784, the Royal Instructions to Governor Thomas Carleton commanded that the Province be divided into counties, and the latter into parishes. The parish was a civil unit from the first, and the name was used in the same sense as township. The Instructions also provided a plot of land in each parish for the support of the school master, and another section stated that school masters from England must be licensed by the Lord Bishop of London, and native teachers by the Governor. Before 1800 there were very few schools, and fewer good teachers. The best teachers were those sent out from England by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, which gave a small grant to maintain them. There were a few private schools in St. John, and an occasional one elsewhere.

1800-1846 Parish Schools. It was not until 1842 that the Legislature succeeded in passing an Act to give money from the Provincial Treasury for the support of schools. The first grant was £420 to be apportioned by the Courts of General Sessions, so that £10 would be applied to the aid of a school in each parish, “in such manner as shall best assist in maintaining such schools as may be already established, or as shall induce the establishing of other schools where they may judge the same necessary.” Nothing was said about the cost of housing the school, nor about additional pay for the teacher. These expenses were met by subscription among the inhabitants. The apportioning of the Legislative grant was left to the Courts of General Sessions. One of these bodies presided over each county, and was composed of Justices of the Peace, one from each parish. The parish was the unit for administering the elementary school, and continued to be until free schools came in.

In 1816 an interesting piece of legislation permitted Parish Schools to be supported by taxation. This feature did not meet with popular approval, and no schools were thus supported. In 1818 the provision was repealed. Another section of the Act of 1816, which authorized the Courts of General Sessions to appoint two School Trustees for each parish, was continued.

The number of Parish School Trustees was increased to three in 1833, and they were made regular parish officers. The duties of the Trustees were becoming more strenuous. They were required to divide the parishes into school districts, and to inspect the schools. The Trustees made out a certificate showing the number of schools kept in each parish, the number of scholars, their sex and ages, and the amount subscribed by the inhabitants. The Trustees sent their certificates to the Courts of General Sessions, which in turn made a compilation of these reports for the Lieutenant Governor.

The teachers were required to furnish the Clerks of the Peace with an account of the number of male and female scholars, with names and ages. They did this every six months, the usual length of time for a teacher to remain in one school. Half the teacher’s salary was derived from the Legislative grant of £10 for six months, which was paid if the inhabitants had subscribed an equal amount. This obligation the inhabitants usually discharged by furnishing the teacher with board and lodging, a pernicious practice called “boarding around.”

New arrangements for Parish Schools were made in 1837. A Board of Education was appointed for each county. The Boards consisted of three persons chosen by the Governor in Council. Instead of having control of the schools in a county, as might have been expected, these Boards were created solely for the purpose of examining candidates for teacher’s license. They did not issue the licenses, but merely reported upon the suitability of the candidates to the Lieutenant Governor, who issued them. The licenses were valid in the county for which they were issued.

No further changes were made in the arrangements for Parish Schools during the period under review.

Madras Schools. The Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts had introduced the National System into New Brunswick as early as 1786. In places where a large number of pupils could be assembled, the monitorial arrangement was admirably suited to the needs of a people who could not afford to pay much for their schools. In 1820 the Madras Beard was incorporated in New Brunswick, and given an annual grant of £500 from the Provincial Treasury. The schools operated by the Board taught elementary subjects and the Catechism and other religious doctrines of the Church of England, so that the Board attracted the gifts of wealthy people who saw in it an agency, not only for the education of the young along the usual lines, but in religion as well. Being well endowed, the Madras Board was able to make fairly large grants to its schools, as is shown by the following extract from the Report of the Madras Schools in 1820.

Grant to the Madras School at Fredericton £100; Kingston £ 60; Gagetown £ 40; Sussex Vale £ 40; Norton £15.

The Madras System had a greater vogue in New Brunswick than in any other of the Provinces. In 1824 the schools under the Board numbered 39 and enrolled 4,736 pupils. Eventually, however, the schools proved a failure, especially in rural communities, but they continued to exist in the larger centers until free schools robbed them of their pupils.

Grammar Schools. The first Grammar School to be opened in New Brunswick was at Fredericton in 1785. It was the outcome of a plan for an Academy originated by the Loyalists before they came to the Province. When the Province was divided for settlement, a large area was reserved near Fredericton for the school. In 1792 the Legislature gave the school a grant of £100 annually, which with the income from its lands, gave it an endowment of £200 a year. The founders of the institution looked forward to its incorporation as a Provincial College, and further notice will be taken of it under that head.

St. John was the largest settlement in the Province, and in 1805 it was provided with a Grammar School. The school had a Board of Directors, the President of which was, by law, the Rector of Trinity Church. The Board might admit eight free scholars. The Legislature gave the school a grant of £100 annually and the same sum for building purposes. The Board was accountable to the Legislature.

The same Act which established the Grammar School at St. John provided for two schools for each county, with the exception of St. John County, which was to have but one. These schools were to be held in each parish in a county in turn, until all the parishes had enjoyed them. The schools were under the direction and control of the Courts of General Sessions. A sum of £375 was appropriated for the support of the masters, which gave each school £25. The Sessions appointed a Committee for each county to inspect the schools and report on them. They were to be inspected also by the clergyman or missionary residing in the parish where the school happened to be at the time. The schools taught English Language, Writing and Arithmetic. These were the first County Schools, and they were the forerunners of the County Grammar Schools.

After eleven years of the movable county schools, County Grammar Schools were established, somewhat after the pattern of the St. John Grammar School. Each of the Grammar Schools was given a Board of three or more Trustees, appointed by the Governor in Council. The Legislature gave a grant of £100 annually upon the assurance that the inhabitants of the county had provided a building and hired a master, and had raised £100 for the support of the school themselves. The studies prescribed were more advanced than those in the old county schools. They were; English Grammar, Latin, Greek, Orthography, Use of the Globes, Practical Mathematics, and other useful learning.

No radical changes were made in the arrangements for Grammar Schools for a long time. In 1829 it was made illegal for a clergyman in charge of a congregation to teach in a Grammar School. The grant continued to be £100, but it was found that the same sum required of the inhabitants was too much, and it was reduced to £50.

The College of New Brunswick. The Academy at Fredericton was incorporated as the College of New Brunswick by Provincial Charter in 1800. The President was in Holy Orders, and all the Professors had to be members of the Church of England, and the students had to subscribe to the Thirty-Nine Articles before taking their degrees.

In 1823 a petition was presented to the King asking that a Royal Charter be given the College. This was not granted until 1827. Under the new charter the name was changed to King’s College, and an endowment of £1000 was settled upon it from the Royal revenues on deposit in the Province. The Legislature gave a further endowment of £1100 annually. Although the name was new, the policies of the College remained the same. The members of the Board of Governors were all Anglicans, and the perpetual succession to the Presidency was vested in the Archdeacon of the Province. This insistence upon its control by the Church of England made the College very unpopular, although it was the only institution for higher learning in the Province.

During the period 1800-1846 the educational system of New Brunswick had made considerable progress. There were then elementary schools in most parishes, under the control of Parish Boards of Trustees. Provision had been made for the Trustees to report to the Courts of General Sessions, who compiled their reports from those of the Trustees and sent them to the Secretary of the Province, so that the Legislature had a means of obtaining a limited amount of information about the schools. There was a Grammar School in each county, under a separate Board of Trustees, who were accountable only to the Legislature. Both kinds of schools received grants from the Provincial Treasury and depended upon subscription to augment this income.

While these developments were admirable, much was yet to be done. There was no central authority. The Court of General Sessions acted as a convenient agency for the collection of reports and the distribution of Parish School grants, but the Justices of the Peace were likely to be unsuited for educational supervision. The Trustees were appointed by the Sessions, as indeed all the parish officers were, so that other interests than those of education would be certain to govern their choice. The teachers were licensed “as by His Majesty’s Royal Instructions is commanded,” but they were untrained and inefficient. Finally, education was still a commodity to be paid for by those whose children received it, and for the poor, a charity.

1847-1870 Parish Schools. The first Provincial Board of Education was authorized in 1847. The Board consisted of the Lieutenant Governor and the Executive Council. It had a Secretary but no Superintendent. The same Act which established the Board of Education empowered it to open a Training School for teachers with a Model School attached.

For the better licensing of teachers, three classes of licenses were made, and the Provincial grants paid according to the license held. The grants were: for a First Class License, £30; Second Class, £22; Third Class, £18. Before the grant would be paid to the teacher, the inhabitants had to subscribe and raise £10 for the support of the teacher, or provide board and lodging to this amount.

The Act of 1847 marked the establishment of a central authority. Henceforth the Parish Schools were governed not only by law, but by regulations of the Board, which could be made to suit changing conditions.

The First Training School was opened at Fredericton in 1847, and the following year another was started at St. John. Each school had a Board of Examiners attached to it, and upon the joint report of the Examiners and the Training School master the candidate’s license depended. At first the term of training was six weeks, and later, twelve weeks.


Two inspectors were appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council. This was the beginning of official inspection in New Brunswick.

A further development in administration was made in 1852, when a Chief Superintendent of Parish Schools was appointed. At that time only one Training School was authorized, and it was at Fredericton. For the first time a distinction was made in the grants to male and female teachers, as follows:

Males – First Class £30; Second Class £20; Third Class £18. Females – First Class £20; Second Class £18; Third Class £14.

These grants were in aid of the teacher. The upkeep of the school and any further salary paid the teacher were met by subscription. Districts and parishes were, however, permitted to assess themselves for the support of the schools, and to encourage this, 25% above the usual grant was offered to those communities adopting the assessment principle.

In 1858 new legislation was enacted for Parish Schools. Under it the Province was divided into four inspectoral districts. The Parish Trustees were then elected in each parish or town, where before they had been appointed. Each school district elected a School Committee of three persons. The Committees had very little authority. They could admit free scholars, reduce the fees to the poor, call meetings for the purpose of providing maps and other school equipment, and had control of any library belonging to the district.

The Legislative aid to teachers was slightly increased and the three classes of licenses continued. Among the duties laid upon the teacher was that of inculcating Christian principles in the minds of the pupils. The Board of Education could, by regulation, secure to all children the reading of the Bible in Parish Schools, and Roman Catholic children might read the Douay version without note or comment. These provisions were the foundation of a claim by the Roman Catholic that the Act of 1858 entitled them to teach their own religion in Parish Schools.

An interesting development in 1858 was the Superior School. In order to induce the people to improve their schools the Board of Education offered to pay an increased grant to one school in each parish if it merited a high rating. To be eligible the school had to have a competent teacher, for whose support the inhabitants had raised a sum of £50 or more. If then the inspector certified that the school was satisfactorily taught, the Provincial grant would equal the sum raised up to £75. In time the Superior School came to occupy a place between the Parish and the Grammar School.

Grammar Schools. In 1846 a special Committee of the Legislature consisting of Messrs. James Brown and John Gregory, and Dr. S.Z. Earle, reported on the condition of the Grammar Schools. Their report stated that of the subjects prescribed to be taught, the number of pupils in each branch for the whole Province, with the exception of St. John and Northumberland Counties, was: Latin 20, Greek 3, Use of the Globes 2, Mathematics 7, English Grammar 31.

There were, of course, pupils in the Grammar Schools studying other subjects than those mentioned, but these should have been in the Parish Schools. It was so evident that the Grammar Schools were not serving the purpose for which they were intended that measures were immediately enacted to remedy the defects.

Under the new provisions the following subjects were prescribed: Orthography, Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, English Grammar, Geography, English Composition, Ancient and Modern History, Natural Philosophy, Natural History, the practical branches of Mathematics, Use of the Globes, Latin, Greek, and such other useful learning as was thought necessary.

Since some of the Grammar Schools had been taking children of elementary school age, a new provision made it necessary for them to have 15 pupils above the age of 10 years in daily attendance, and the teachers were required to keep a daily register.

The Trustees of the Grammar Schools had hitherto been required to report on the general state of the schools once a year. They were now to inspect them every six months and to file a semi-annual report with the Provincial Secretary.

The grant to Grammar Schools was continued, and a penal clause added which made it possible for the Governor in Council to reduce the sum paid to any school if it appeared to be inefficiently conducted.

Nothing further was done for the Grammar Schools until they were brought under the control of the Board of Education in 1861, and they were then made subject to the inspection of the Superintendent.

King’s College. King’s College had not continued its operation long before complaints were made against its management and the exclusive character of its charter. The Governors of the institution resisted every effort of the Assembly to alter its charter, claiming it to be beyond their power. Finally, in 1854, a Commission was appointed by the Governor in Council to review the whole situation and to make recommendations. The members of the Commission were; the Hon. John H. Gray, the Hon John Simcoe Saunders, The Hon. James Brown, the Rev. Dr. Ryerson and Dr. J.W. Dawson. The report of the Commission was not implemented in its entirety. In 1859 the College was reorganized as the University of New Brunswick, and all religious barriers removed so that the institution became acceptable to all classes and denominations.

The period from 1847 to 1870 just reviewed was a period of reorganization. The formation of a central Board of Education and the appointment of a Superintendent were outstanding developments. Another feature of this period was the inauguration of training for teachers. An effort was made to arouse school districts by offering an increased grant to one school in each parish if it came up to certain requirements. The inspection was better than ever before. At first county inspectors were employed on part time, and later four inspectors for the whole Province gave all their attention to the Parish Schools.

The Grammar Schools were brought up to the level intended by law. They had become little better than Parish Schools. It was evident that the Trustees had performed their duties in a very perfunctory manner. The new arrangement provided a simple check on the character of the institutions. Eventually they came under the same regulations as the common schools.

The University of New Brunswick, after a long struggle, was finally put on a satisfactory basis. The governing authority was made non-denominational and the courses modernized, so that the prospects of its becoming a popular institution instead of an exclusive one, were bright, if late in achievement.

The period under review brought to a close the efforts to support schools by means of voluntary taxation. The Legislature at different times had endeavored to induce the people to tax themselves for school purposes, and it had offered premiums in the form of increased grants to those districts and parishes which would do it. In 1852, 25% additional grant was offered to any section adopting the assessment principle. In 1858, 10% was offered. In spite of these inducements not a single county, municipality or parish had supported its schools in this manner, and only here and there had a district done so.

1871-1900. The outstanding event of 1871 was the passage of the Common Schools Act, which provided for free schools. Under the new Act, the support of elementary schools was derived from three sources; Provincial Aid to teachers; the County School Fund; District Assessment.

The parish as an administrative unit was abandoned and the school district adopted in its place. Each district elected three School Trustees at an annual School Meeting.

The teachers were classified according to the license held, as formerly. Inspection was continued, with fourteen inspectors.

Superior Schools were encouraged on the same plan as before.

A clause permitted the Trustees of a Grammar School to unite with the Trustees of a District School for the joint management of both, in which case both schools were to be free.

The last clause in the Act declared that all schools conducted under its provisions were to be non-sectarian.

A great deal of opposition to the whole Act arose because of its non-sectarian clause, and this opposition, as might have been expected, came from the Roman Catholics. They argued that, since the Act of 1858 permitted instruction in Christian principles and allowed the Douay version of the Bible to be read by Roman Catholic children, this constituted a right to have denominational schools. As the Constitution of Canada secured to minorities any rights which they had enjoyed before Confederation, it was maintained that the Common Schools Act was unconstitutional because it deprived the Roman Catholics of the right to have denominational schools with government support. The matter was argued before the Supreme Court of New Brunswick, and before the Privy Council in England. In both cases the New Brunswick Act was upheld. In 1875, after the opposition had abated a little, a compromise was effected which made the Act more agreeable to the Roman Catholics. Under this arrangement the members of certain religious orders could qualify as teachers and the property owned by the Roman Catholic Church could be used by the Trustees for school purposes. All religious teaching was to be done outside of school hours.

Common Schools. The old Parish Schools had never been graded, and one of the improvements in the Common Schools was evident in 1876, when there were 325 graded departments, being 25.5% of all the schools of the Province.

No uniform course of study had ever been pursued in the Parish Schools, and it was not until 1878 that one was prepared for the Common Schools. It came about in a curious way. The Act of 1871 provided that after five years from its inception, the Provincial Aid to teachers should be apportioned in part according to the class of license held, and in part according to the results of an examination conducted by an inspector. This scheme, called the Ranking System, was postponed until 1878. Before it could be enforced a uniform course of study for all the Common Schools was necessary, and it was first authorized in that year. The Ranking System came to an end in 1884.

There was no compulsory attendance law in New Brunswick until 1905. Earlier attempts to stimulate attendance relied upon prizes, which were bought by the Trustees out of school funds. The plan was not a marked success.

The progress of education in New Brunswick may be judged from the following:

Year and Proportion of whole population in school: 1852 1 in 10.42; 1862 1 in 8.92; 1872 1 in 7.19; 1882 1 in 6.09; 1892 1 in 5.10; 1902 1 in 5.75.

Superior Schools. A Superior School in 1872 was one which had qualified itself by paying the teacher $200 or more and was then judged by an inspector to have been satisfactorily taught. When these conditions had been met, the Board of Education paid a grant equal to the sum raised for the teacher’s salary, but not exceeding $300. There could be only one Superior School in any one parish. It soon appeared that this plan for the distribution of the Superior School Grant was a poor one, and a new basis was used in 1879. The grant was then made to depend upon the number of pupils annually certified by an inspector as having satisfactorily completed the work in Standard VIII of the Course of Study. The accommodations and equipment had to be up to the requirements of the Board. A lower Standard, VI, was required for the ungraded schools in rural districts. One-half the grant was paid to the teacher and one-half to the trustees.

In 1885 a new arrangement provided for one Superior School in each county for every 6,000 inhabitants, but not more than one such school in any parish as a rule. The teacher received an annual grant of $250, provided the district paid him the same amount.

In 1887 a Course of Study was prepared for the Superior and Grammar Schools. A Superior School in cities and incorporated towns, and towns having four graded departments, was required to give instruction in Standards IX and X, and if no higher Standard than X was taught. Standard VIII might be required, provided the average daily attendance was not more than 25. Should Standards IX, X, and XI be taught, no lower grade was included in the Superior School. In two or three-department schools, the highest department was the Superior School.

Until 1895 the teachers of Superior Schools were required to hold a First Class License, and after that date the teacher had to hold a Superior School License as well.

In 1895 the number of Superior Schools was increased by the removal of the restriction which forbade the maintenance of more than one of these schools in a parish.

Grammar Schools. The Common Schools Act permitted the Grammar Schools to unite with the Common School in any district, and to be supported in the same manner. In 1884 the separate Grammar School Corporations were dissolved, and the property of the Grammar School was vested in the Board of Trustees for the district in which the school was situated. In 1885 the principal of a Grammar School received a grant of $350, and in 1897 this grant was paid to every Grammar School teacher, up to four in one school, provided that they were exclusively employed in teaching Grammar School grades. To be qualified for the grant, the teacher had to hold a Grammar School License.

In 1900 the Grammar Schools were graded, and had at least ten pupils above Grade VIII. Entrance to the High School grades was obtained by passing the High School Entrance Examinations. A Junior Leaving Examination was held for those desiring a certificate showing that they had completed Grade X. The University Matriculation Examination was on the work of Grades IX, X and XI. Entrance to the Normal School was gained by passing the Normal School Entrance Examination. All these examinations were set by a Provincial Board of Examiners under the control of the Board of Education.

The Board of Education was strengthened in 1871 by the addition of the President of the University of New Brunswick. In 1891 the Chief Superintendent was made, ex officio, the President of the University, and then the Chancellor of the University was made a member of the Board.

A number of educational institutions in operation in 1900, but not forming a part of the Provincial system of education remain to be mentioned. The largest of these were the Mount Allison institutions at Sackville, N.B. Mount Allison Academy was the oldest, having been founded in 1843. The Ladies’ College dated back to 1854, and the University of Mount Allison to 1862.

The considerable Acadian population in New Brunswick had several institutions of their own, chief of which was the University of St. Joseph’s College, at Memramcook, N.B. It was founded in 1864.

A number of private and denominational schools was flourishing in 1900. They were:

St. Mary’s Female Academy, Newcastle, founded 1864; Congregation of Notre Dame, Caroquet, founded 1874; St. Louis Convent School, St. Louis, founded 1874; Academy of Our Lady of Snows, Campbellton, founded 1888; Rothesay College for Boys, Rothesay, founded 1891; Rothesay School for Girls, Rothesay, founded 1894.

The Madras Schools had lost most of their pupils after 1872. In 1900 a part of their endowment was given to the University of New Brunswick and the rest to the Diocesan Synod of Fredericton for the support of schools under their control. In 1900 a few of the Madras Schools were still in operation.

An Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb had been in operation since 1872. It was maintained by private subscriptions, a Provincial grant of $400 annually, a county grant of $60 per pupil, and by fees from parents.

There was no school for the blind in New Brunswick, but children from that Province were sent to the Nova Scotia School for the Blind at Halifax. Their expenses were borne at the rate per pupil of $75 from the Provincial Treasury, and $75 from the county sending the child.

The century of development which has been traced has had to deal almost entirely with elementary education. Although begun about the same time, the Grammar Schools underwent comparatively few changes. But for the Parish Schools the first attempts at support by taxation were made, and for them the Board of Education was evolved. The first Superintendent was also for Parish Schools. Finally, however, a system of education was evolved which included the Grammar Schools and was in close contact with the University, so that the year 1900 found New Brunswick with elementary schools in every district, which graded into the Superior and Grammar Schools, and these in turn fed the University.

Written by johnwood1946

October 21, 2015 at 8:52 AM

Posted in Uncategorized


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