A Devoted People or Helpless Servants?
I knew from the beginning of this project that trying to translate the usual fragmentary, sometimes contradictory, often dubious details of the lives of ordinary people, all of them long dead, into a narrative that captured not only the reality of their lives but also the larger truth of how and why a year-old city rose and fell within the historic blink of an eye—and do all of that without playing fast and loose with Loyalists and layabouts essay known facts—was going to be challenging, and probably frustrating.
When I do that, I have the luxury of interviewing flesh-and-blood human beings. When I began my research, I had hoped to discover a strong female character whose story could become part of this book.
There undoubtedly were many of them in Shelburne. During the course of my research, I came tantalizingly close on a couple of occasions to finding the female character I was seeking. Margaret Cowper-Fletcher-Watson-Cutt, for example, could have made a fascinating central character.
She certainly lived an extraordinary life. In the mids, she and her two young children followed her soldier-husband from London across the ocean to America, where she witnessed his death in a revolutionary battle. Then both of her sons died.
Margaret had two more children by him. Inshe and her second family became part of the historic exodus of refugees who sailed from New York to Shelburne. Which she did by marrying a third time. That husband died too. Margaret, having had so little luck with husbands, eventually became an innkeeper in Shelburne.
There is undoubtedly the makings of a novel in her Perils-of-Pauline life. Just as I did with Mary Swords, who was the mother of two young Shelburne printers. For more than a decade after the war, Mary relentlessly pressed her seemingly reasonable claims for compensation for her wartime losses, which included a husband and another son, as well as valuable property.
Despite that, she continued to be the most resolute and steadfast of Loyalists. Inshe had a sudden and unexplained—and now inexplicable—change of heart and swore an oath of allegiance to the new United States of America.
Hannah Booth, the too-delicate wife of a British soldier stationed in Shelburne, also seemed at one point to be a candidate for principal-character status.
That, of course, is the difficulty of writing non-fiction. And the reward, too. During the course of my research, I did discover some incredibly rich and tellingly detailed first-person accounts of eighteenth-century life in the diaries and letters of a number of people who had called Shelburne home: Their personal stories—and others, too—are the threads that interweave to tell the larger story of Shelburne.
In many ways, the history of any place is the sum of the flesh-and-blood stories of those who lived it. People came and went, oblivious to my narrative needs and desires.
The short answer is no. But I take known facts, and imagine. From the relatively little documentation available, I tried to read between the lines of those of their letters that have survived.
I used my judgment in what to include and what to omit; what to emphasize and what to ignore; how to distill an untidy, sprawling mass of facts into a tidy package.
Or at least that is my aim. You can find at the beginning of the Endnotes an example of how I have developed my source material into a narrative. Throughout the text, Roman numerals refer the reader to an endnote, while Arabic numerals refer to a footnote.
Eliza suddenly disappears from the pages of his diary and, so far as we can tell, from his life, too. Did they have a falling out?
Did she move away? Take up with another lover?Sabine, L. Biographical Sketches of Loyalists of the American Revolution, with an Historical Essay. Boston: Little, Brown and Co., Boston: Little, Brown and Co., "Select loyalist memorials: the appeals for compensation for losses and sacrifices to the British Parliamentary Commission of to from loyalist of the American.
The Loyalists Essay Sample. The loyalists were given this name as a result of still wanting to be ruled by Britain.
They were often very badly treated by the American rebels. These colonists had not been frequently allowed to buy goods, they were ridiculed (made fun of), sometimes beaten up and all of their land was being slowly confiscated. Loyalists and Layabouts Reviewed by Logan W.
Bjarnason, UE, President, Regina Branch About the middle of May, I received a review copy of Stephen Kimber's book Loyalists and Layabouts: The Rapid Rise and Faster Fall of Shelburne, Nova Scotia, , published May 17, TRUE TO THE OLD FLAG: A Novel of The Loyalists in the American War of Independence [Annotated] (Henty History Series) by George Henty.
$ pages. Publisher: Fireship Press (March 6, ). Loyalists and Layabouts Essay Example for Free Loyalists and Layabouts was as well voted for the Evelyn Richardson Prize for Non-fiction which was awarded in May 8 at the Atlantic Link Prizes festivity.
(Kimber, S, ) Loyalists and Layabouts is a convincing expedition . Loyalists and Layabouts About the book The few hundred Loyalists who gathered at Roubalet’s Tavern in New York one night in shared a nightmare of the past and a dream for the future.