Northumberland County Petitions
From Original Land Memorials in Crown Lands Office
Department of Lands and Mines Fredericton, New Brunswick
Copied From Originals by Louise Manny


Petition of Andrew Cheap and Robert Reid
January 10, 1785

Andrew Cheap and Robert Reid entered into a co-partnery under the Firm of Messrs. Wishart and Co., under the patronage of Captain Shank, in order to carry on a salmon fishng on the River Miramichi, on that lot formerly occupied by and the undoubted property of Messrs. Wishart, but which they were necessitated to abandon in the year 1779, after being plundered of their Effects, first by the Crews of the different Privateers belonging to the Rebel States, and afterwards by the Savages, and were obliged to fly for refuge to Quebec, where General Haldimand appointed them Lieutenants in His Majesty’s Service on the Lakes. While they were away, a William Leaden availed himself thereof and took possession of the Houses, etc, belonging to the Messrs. Wishart, which he still unjustly occupies, notwithstanding the many requisitions made for him to quit the same. Cheap and Reid ask to have Leaden removed.


Petition of Alexander Henderson and Others
March 1785

Mark Delesdernier, acting as agent for the only Principal and old settlers on the Miramichi River who have licenses from the Government at Halifax.
Said settlers received from the Honourable Captain Boil, 1777, a memorial of regulations as follows: Captain Boil called the old settlers together and had them properly qualified to Government by Government advice and order – and his consideration of the barrenness and obscurity of the place, and the settlers forther benefit of the fishing, Capt. Boil nominate each to take up one-half mile of front, and to keep and hold the same in possession till further orders from Government.

Alexander Henderson, wife and 8 children (12 in number) (sic. Must refer to servants as well – Louise Manny).
John Murdoch, wife and 7 children (9 in number).
Martin Lyons, wife and 4 children (7 in number).
Widdow Blake, 4 children, 1 servant (6 in number).
John Toshen, and John Fishgerral, and I servant (3 in number)

John Malcolm and family

They ask for their names to be kept in the Register kept for the purpose.


The Petition of John Toshen and Others
March, 1785

John Toshen, William Atkinson, Martin Lyons, John Mark Delesdernier, John Henderson, John Parsons, William Dryesdale, Jonathon Malcolm, Alexander Henderson, James Henderson, John Delesdernier … they are all inhabitants of Miramichie, they are informed that thirty families of Loyalists have obtaned 15,000 acres of land on this River. Your Memorialists claim a small Tract of Salt Marsh Lands on south side of River Miramichie called Kinadian Point, … have cleared, enclosed, and occuped said lands since 1777, and therefore ask that the land be granted to them.


The Petition of Alexander Henderson
March 5, 1785

Alexander Henderson is the first settler on His Majesty’s lands below the grant in Miramichi, has resided here with his family six sons and two daughters, they have improved and occupied his possession of Morefield since the year 1776, while during the late commotions undergone the greatest hardship and oppression, being often robbed and spoiled of all he had and daily threatened being sacraficed by the Barbarous Ingeons. Honourable Captain Boyle of HM Hunter (?Frigate) of war, with advice of Government, came here July 1775 when he adopted every man’s place below the Grant of one-half mile fronting the river – this on consideration of the barrenness of the ground, and for the benefit of the fishing which he … the settlers and left written Institution. Your petitioner now setting out his family – have taken of land adjoining to his possession as settlement for eight families, William, James, Peter and George Hendersons, James Henderson, James Newlands, James Gillice and John Taylor’s with their familys, emigrants from Scotland, brought out at the expense of your petitioner. This are possessions lying on the north side of the River opposite to Middle Island, three leagues below Mr. Davidson’s Grant. (JM Delesdernier, bearer, and William Davidson will give informaton if asked), asks for 3000 or 4000 acres of land for himself and the other families, including Middle Island opposite, on which about one acre of pasture is cleared).


Petition of William Brown
March 8, 1785

William Brown of Miramichi says he has been in Province 21 years, has 6 children, 5 born in this province, has resided on the Miramichi 8 years, fished and cleared land, now settled on lot adjoining Henry McCullam on the south side of the river a little below Davidson and Cort’s Grant, asks that he be continued in this lot, he being the first and only man that ever possessed it, and was ordered to settle there by John Boyle, Esq in 1777, then commanding HMS Hunter – also asks a lot for his son Robert Brown, who was a soldier in Colbeck’s Battalion, to be on lands not yet occupied, adjacent to the memorialist’s lot. Mark Delesdernier bears this petition.


The Petition of Martin Lyon and Alex. Henderson
April 16, 1785

Martin Lyon, for himself and Alex. Henderson of the River Miramichi, refers to a prevous memorial asking for certain lots of land improved by himself and Henderson on the River Miramichi, for which they obtained Licence of Occupation from Sir Andrew Snape Hammond. Asks for an answer, since he is far from his family and the season is now getting dangerous for travelling on the ice.

(encl.) Licence from Hammond to occupy lands they now possess including all improvements:

July 19, 1782
Alex. Henderson – 250 acres on north and 250 acres on south side
Thomas Yeoman – 200 acres north side
Martin Lyon – 300 acres north side
John Malcolm – 100 acres north side
John Farseau – 100 acres north side
John Pearsons – 300 acres south side
John Murdoch – 500 acres south side
John Blake – 350 acres south side


The Petition of William Cort
May 18, 1785

To Governor Carleton:
William Cort of the River Miramichi – Your Memorialist, unable to bear the many and repeated wrongs and injuries received from different inhabitants of his Place, most humbly desireth that He and all his Majesty’s loyal subjects may be secured in their Lives and Properties from the unlawful attempts of People accustomed to Robbery and Plunder. Your memorialist entreats Your Excellency’s attention while He relates part of their behavior towards His unhappy Family at a time when your memorialist was but a child, His Father absent, and His Mother on her Death-Bed. They were so daring as to form a Court of Judicature among themselves; They then broke open and plundered a store belonging to his Father of Goods to the amount of L200 and upwards. Your memorialist came to this country on Hearing of his Father’s decease. On his arrival he unfortunately found that some of these people under false pretences had gotten Possession of His Father’s Books, papers, Household furniture, etc., to finish the process, they were proceeding to demolish a House, as also the Fishing Furniture of your Memorialist and had not been so fortunate as to arrive in time so as to prevent the latter part of their intentions. Your memorialist hath several times demanded those who had thus unlawfully seized on His property to return it to Him. Notwithstanding they have no Reason for thus acting. They have alays refused complying with the Request of your Memorialist, who hath been treated with all manner of abuse and Bad language. So little regard have they to Law and Justice that some of them have said “That there never was and never would be any law in Miramichi”. Your memorialist being the Eldest of a Family which hath had the misfortune to lose their parents at an early Period of their lives, hopes that Your Excellency by enforcing laws so as to protect the Community in General will be a means of assisiting Your Memorialist to provide for the other children of his Father’s family.

Endorsed: “Rec’d 18 May, 1785”.


The Petition of Alexander Wishart
August 12, 1785

Alexander Wishart says he and his brother settled here 1775, and built a house and shed for curing of salmon, and cleared some land, which house is now on Lot No.3, north side of the River and also occupied from Lot Nos. 2 – 9, but in 1778 we was plundered of a very considerable amount by the privateers of the states, and in 1779 by the savages, and lost everything. They went to Quebec in HMS Viper, Lord Hervey, where we both obtained commissions to serve His Majesty on Lake Champlain, under command of Captain William Chambers, and at the conclusion of the war six of us entitled to lands Intered into a Co-partnery in order to carry on merchandising, fishing and farming at the place formerly occupied by me and my brother. On their arrival last year with a cargo from London, was interrupted by a William Ledden, who had taken violent possession of my house … who said he had got a grant of it from William Davidson, and would not give up the house to them, but was obliged to put up with one end of it, and we, having a valuable property, was exposed to many risques and when I arrived here this spring he still would persist in keeping possession of the house, although knowing it well to be my property, he is lickways marked to Lot No. 4, which cuts off the whole fishing on Lot No. 3. He is a man of very indifferent character, and never was of any service to King or Country, but I have had the honour to serve His majesty in the two late wars, so that I hope your Excellency will be pleased to honour me with your advice relative to the memorial. Presented to your Excellency by Mr. Robert Reid Dated January 10, last (1785).

(encl.) Quebec, August 26, 1784, to Messrs. Wishart, Hutchison and Company, ” I have this moment made the strongest interest with Governor Wentworth who is … General of all the woods in America, and who has from my representation of you all assured me who will stand your (?firm) friend, and will himself get you and me land, and desired me to tell you that you must write him, acquainting him when you want your land, and that he will order a person to survey your land, and put you in possession. Mr. Reid will therefore write him … Your friend, John Shank.


The Petition of Benjamin Steimeist
August 13, 1785

Benamin Steimeist, Farmer, native of Gravesend on Long Island near New York, and was settled at Hampstead at the commencement of the late Rebellion, fled to Statten Island, and when New York was evacuated came to this province. He has been about twelve months in the County of Northumberland Miramichi, and is beginning to make a settlement at a place called Bettvin in Miramichi Bay. Has a wife and five children unmarried, all above the age of ten years.


The Petition of Benjamin Marston
August 15, 1785

Alexander Wishart, Ship Master, Robert Reid, Cornel’s Place, John Watson, Alexander Henderson, ask that John Tushie, who has acted as Pilot on this River since 1775, never lost a vessel, recommend him for Pilot, very active, sober and industrious man. Francis Harriman, Master of the Ship Viper, certifie that … have been piloted up and downe this River several times by this Mr. John Tushie.

Thomas McKinnon, Ship Builder
Thomas Yeomans
William Drysdale
William Coon
William Brown

(encl.) in a letter, Marston to Jonathon Odell


The Petition of John Malcolm
September 5, 1785

To Governor Carleton:
John Malcolm has been appointed by the ancient Inhabitants of Miramichi to present the enclosed memorial and asks to be heard personally in Council.

(encl.) Memorial of the Ancient Inhabitants of Miramichi, to wit, Martin Lyons, Alexander Henderson, John Henderson, Robert Bec, Thomas Yeomans, William Drisdail, William Atkinson, John Parsons, John Tushie, John Malcolm, and William Brown, had for many years improved and enjoyed in common right a tract of Marsh or meadow land usually called Canadian Point as a conveniency in cutting hay for our cattle, and which has matrially assisted us during a long period of general distress. In these parts in the means of supporting our families, well knowing the important of so essential a necessity as hay, in this river, rendered still more so by the increase of Inhabitants since the terminaton of the war we petitioned … for this tract of land in common … as they live near it, and as it is not suitable for further cultivation or for settlement, petition sent to Parr Town March, 1785, by Mark Delesdernier … but was never presented, some collusion and artifice having prevented its natural course. Also Mr. John Willson was appointed a magistrate, not by the approbation of the old inhabitants, as being strangers to his capacity, was the only person who employed people to cut down the hay, and said the memorialist could bring to him what hay he had remaining after supplying himself … Your memorialists ?- petition Benjamin Marston, Esq, our present Sherriff, who forbade John Willson from cutting or carrying away the hay untill the Government’s pleasure was known, the people whom he employed said was he to order them they would have cut down your memorialists’ corn … behold us dispossessed of our ancient rights by strangers – rights which cultivation and long posession … would give us a prior claim to our meadows which are now destroying and violently cut down before half grown. We likeways complain of the partiality used by Mr. Misheau, the late surveyor, in laying out to us in part 40 roods only in front by which reson we are deprived of a great part of our uncleared lands, and part of our houses and unsettled lands adjoining have 60 roods front. Ask that they may occupy their meadows with molestation, and that Benjamin Marston make a new survey.

Endorsed: “September 20,1785, Marsh at Canadian Point to be assigned to them in common”.


The Petition of Alexander Henderson
September 6, 1785

Alexander Henderson, inhabitant of Miramichi, last fall petitioned the Government in Halifax, requesting indulgence for the building of a Saw and Grist Mills – this declined on account of the Government being separate – now applies to Governor Carleton – has cleared the place and runs and reared two habitable houses on the spot where mills are designed – asks for such lands as are usually granted for that intent. He and other of the old Inhabitants complains of the injustice done by Mr. Mishaud, the Survier, who has subtilly alloted all the houses and improvements belonging to your petitioner, marking the same down in plan of the river in the name of others, etc. Asks that Benjamin Marston be empowered to take a new survey of the River.


The Petition of Alexander Wishart
February 18, 1786

Alexander Wishart has no reply to Memorial of January 10, 1785 or letter August 6, 1785 – expecting the lands and fishing places formerly occupied by me and brother was to be continued or part at least of the fishing place on it, but is entirely cut off By Lott 4, which was occupied by us for several years and seems to have loast it, by our services to Government … Lot 3 is all a flat muddy sand a good distance from the shoar so that we cannot sett a nett anywhere on this Lott, but in the centre between the two lotts, but in opposition to us, the netts from Lott 4 is sett right in front of ours and so close that they often intangle with ours, to the Great Detterment of our Business. For further particulars, refer to the Bearer, Mr. Adam McAllen, a partner of ours.

(encl.) St John, February 18, 1786… I should gladly have complied… but Lot No. 4 was already assigned to another person … apply to Mr. Marston (draft of letter).


The Petition of Benjamin Marston
March 27, 1786

To Govenor Carleton and H.M. Council: Being engaged in a plan of business which will wholly engage my time and attention, and will frequently occasion my being absent from the County of which you have done me the honour to appoint me the Sheriff, I humbly beg the favour of Your Excellency and Your Honours to permit me to resign that office. The necessary attention to my own affairs and the proper attention to duties thereof being utterly incompatible, I have the honoiur to be, with the truest Respect, Your dutiful and most obedient Humble Servant, Benjamin Marston.

St John, March 27, 1786

Endorsed! “Complied With”.


The Petition of Alexander Wishart
December 30, 1786

To Governor Carleton:
Alexander Wishart has the remains of a house built on Lott 10, north side of Miramichi River in 1777, and designed to Build a Miln, as there is a small rivulet falls into that cove, but being plundered of all his effects, thought it more prudent to leave this place and serve his King and country as he had done the last French war, and having received no lands for his service … asks for this lot.

Endorsed: “Granted to Mr. Delesdernier”.


The Petition of John Wilson, J.P. and Others
January, 1787

We would wish to inform government that there is a number of lots of land on the River Miramichi that are located to persons that are not nor never was Residenters here and as they are gone to difrant parts it is thought never will be improved by them, as they have been absent a long time.

John Wilson, J.P.
Alexander Wishart
Robert Reid

A list of names that have located lands and all gone to diferent parts of this river.

Archabel Campoll
Robert (?Till)
John Taylor
Alexander MacDonald


The Petition of John Willson
May 12, 1787

To Governor Carleton:
I beg liberty to inform Your Excellency of the disorderly Riots is comeing on in this place occasioned by people going to fish contrary to all customs been known in this place. Most of them improve no land, but locate for the purpose of fishing, running up and down fishing in such a matter that they do and will deprive the Honest and Industrious people of the privileges Your Excellency Bestowed on them. They are now gone betwixt us and the River mouth with Drift, Drag, ?- Stop nets and … other machines of fishing which is thought will destroy the whole by turning the course of them … they passed the last season expecting some requisitions would be made but as there is an exception in the County of Northumberland and no information of what has been done the last season they are most determined to go take their nets and machines prepared for their purposes from them by force, the others giving out Great threats that they will fish and bid defiance swaring they will … of their lives on those threats. The inhabitants do and was going about their Intention now came to me and fearing there would be bloodshed made what … I could with the most moderate part of them, with great difficulty appeased them on promising them that I would inform Your Excellency of the matter by sending express immediately. On this they promised they will refrain ?- return as they want nothing but …. Requisition as the other counties and to hinder all the cross nets and merchants from other points from fishing as they did last season, and as there is no magistrate acts in this county but your petitioner humbly begs orders how to act in this matter.

John Willson

The heads of those dissolute fishers is John Barr and Rob Shaw from …, John Carpenter and Jonathan Lufbury; James Davidson, and hands of William Davidson, Esq.

Note from Louise Manny: This is not in Willson’s handwriting but it is his signature.


The Petition of Duncan McGraw
July 31, 1787

To Governor Carleton:
Duncan McGraw, late of the 42nd Regiment, has resided at Miramichi some time pase. Lot No. 7, south side, is vacant – he asks for it.

Endorsed: “Complied With”.


The Petition of Philip Hierlihy and Patrick Barry
August 1, 1787

Philip Hierlihy, late Sergeant of the Prince of Wales American Regiment, and Patrick Barry have no title to lands – want land below Mishau’s survey, north side.

Endorsed: “Land has already been assigned”


The Petition of John Menzies and Duncan Robertson
September 5, 1787

John Menzies and Duncan Robertson have lived at Miramichi 12 months, want Lots No. 5 and 6 on south side of the River.

Endorsed: “Duncan Robertson, No. 5 and John Menzies No. 6”.


The Petition of Phillip Hierlihy
January 6, 1788

To Governor Carleton:
Phillip Hierlihy, late Sergeant of the Prince of Wales American Regiment, applied for land at Miramichi last summer. Wants Lot No. 70, north side.


The Petition of Charles Stuart
April 25, 1788

Charles Stuart, late private soldier of His Majesty’s 82nd Regiment of Foot, has a minute of Council dated April 25, 1788 for Lot No. 27, south side, and thereon had built an house which got consumed by fire when burning the wood and brush that lay round it, by supposition being about two acres and a half that was then cut down and almost cleared, on part of which there has been potatoes planted. Since that house has been burned your petitioner hath built another house, dimensions 18 x 14 feet, in which he should (God willing) have resided last winter, but to oblige the Publick and to encourage the most laudable branch of agriculture, hath attended a mill, no miller being here but your Petitioner, nor mill but that he occupied. Of course his attention hath been employed both spring and fall, grinding such grain as was brought to the mill, the only seasons that he should improve said Lot, never having drawn any of His majesty’s lands but that lot, not yet three years since he has been the proprietor, the whole of the inhabitants can evidence the truth of what this Petition contains and several are pleaed to testify the same by subscribing their names thereto. A certain Alex Gillis, living on this River not yet two years, being at Fredericton lately, rumoured through the neighbourhood at his return from thence that he made application for said Lot No. 27 and obtained his request. Therefore beseeches His Excellency for justice. Names attesting to the truth of the petition:

Duncan McGraw
Duncan Robertson
Philip Hierlihy
John Henderson
Alex. Taylor, sr.
John Taylor
William Brown
Patrick Henderson
George Henderson
Patrick Taylor
Alex. Henderson
Murdoch McLeod

Note From Louise Manny: “And Many More”


The Petition of John Julien
January 10, 1789

Return of John Julien, Chief of the Miramichi Indians, and his Tribe A Tract of Land … in the parish of Newcastle, Northumberland County … beginning at a marked white birch tree on the northerly shore of the NW branch of the Miramichi River opposite the lower or easterly end of Beobair’s Point, said tree being on the upper or south west corner of Lot N. 3 in the grant to Williamson, thence running by the magnet along the west line of the said Lot No. 3, and along its prolongation, north 22.30 West, until it meets the prolongation of the easterly line of Lot No.4 in the Grant aforesaid, thence along said prolongation and easterly line of the said Lot No. 4, south 13 degrees and 30 minutes west … containing 3033 acres, with allowance of 10% for roads – annexed plan – George Sproule.

Note from Louise Manny: No plan with this memorial.


The Petition of Duncan McRaw
March 12, 1790

Duncan McRaw, late a Private Soldier in the 42nd Regiment of Foot, had land on the River Nashwaak, relinquished it in order to obtain a lot of land on the River Miramichi … he moved here three years since, and has made comfortable settlement. He has 5 head of cattle, … needs a meadow … asks for 25 acres of marsh (unoccupied) at the commencement of Grand down Creek or Marsh. Certificate by Dug’d Campbell, says “Duncan McRaw has been his servant about six years, recommends him as a very deserving, industrious man, and one that will make a very valuable settler”

Endorsed: “March 12, 1790, will have a lot assigned him when the survey is completed”.


The Petition of John Murdoch
March 25, 1791

John Murdoch of Mirimishie has got Arthur Nicholson to “run my line from Mirimishie to Napan River, which is two miles, and Duncan Robertson’s lot next to me is Lot No. 5, which makes 3/4 of a mile of vacant land on the front of that lot, which fronts the River Napan. On said land there is a good spring of water, which my land is quite destitute of, as it is the only one betwixt that and the mouth of the river”. Wants the vacant lot to enable him to make a good farmhouse and barns with other houses to accommodate his store of chattles, as the Hay he cut there would be “nigh to my house, which makes me at present to be at a Great Expense and trouble in bringing it home”.

Endorsed: March 25, 1791.

Note from Louise Manny: This memorial is beautifully written in style of 17th century handwriting.


The Petition of Benjamin Stymitson, Jr.
January 16, 1793

Benjamin Stymitson, Jr., has never drawn any lot, asks for a Lot on the West side of Black River, between lots of Thomas Provan and Farquhar McAuley, lately thrown up by William McAuley.

Endorsed: 1) “Certified to be vacant by the Department Surveyor” 2) “Relinquished by subsequent application”.


The Petition of John Bigs
April 29, 1793

To His Excellency Governor Carleton:
John Bigs of Miramichi, Stone cutter “… I have made and finished two pair of good millstones in Miramichi, first for John Henderson’s mill in 1787 and second for Jonathon Lufberry’s mill in 1792. I also lettered and carved a tombstone to be laid on body of deceased William Davidson, Esq in year 1791. I have the pleasure of being first in the county and only person who can do such”.


The Petition Of William Allan
December 27, 1797

William Allan have resided in Miramichie for a considerable space of years, and to his knowledge inoffensive to any individual, and that he has never received any lands within the province, but … wishes to become a settler in this part of the county. Asks for Lot No. 30, north side, with any improvements other than a few trees cut down by James Connors who misfortunately drowned September, 1791. Certified by Alex. Taylor, J.P., that William Allan “is not only a very honest well respected man, but have been very serviceable to a great many people by keeping school and teaching their children in the dead seasons of the year and laboriously working to those who employed him the other parts of the year.

Endorsed: “Lot is vacant, G. Sproule (first registered to George McFarling)”.


The Petition of Benjamin Stymist, Jr.
March 4, 1799

Memorial of Benjamin Stymist, Jr. on behalf of himself and John Bailley Williston. Benjamin Stymist has resided upon this river with his parents for the space of fourteen years, and till now has never applied for any land, and has always behaved as a good and loyal subject, and being now arrived at the years of maturity has entered into a
co-partnership with the person above mentioned for the purpose of building a sawmill (for which the timber is now ready) upon what is commonly called or known by the name of Bay du Vin River … asks for a survey of Tract to commence immediately below the Rapids and extend up Stream on both sides as far as Your Excellency shall seem meet. James Fraser, J.P certifies that Benjamin Stymist is a sober honest industrious young man … and that John Bailley Williston have a mill frame in great forwrdness … they are both good subjects and good settlers.

Endorsed: “Vacant, G. Sproule”.


The Petition of Thomas Loban and Others
March 18, 1799

Re: Alexander Taylor, J.P. Causes of Complaint Against Alex. Taylor, Esq
That Alex. Taylor having drunk rum in the house of William Simpson till drunk, the said William Simpson not willing to give him more rum, he, the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., put the said Simpson forsibly out of his own house, went to his cellar and drew what liquor he pleased. That the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., without any offence fell upon a Robert England and beat and bruised the body of the said Robert in a terrible manner.

That the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., did at the Sessions in March, 1796, assault and beat a James Donald in the Court House in the face of the publick and threatened others so that His Majesty’s Subjects is in danger while they attend on the duty of their Country.

That the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., did in the house of the above mentioned William Simpson at another period with a large Iron Tongs struck the said Simpson on the head so that he lay dead some time, and his recovery almost despaired of.

The morning of the 27th June last we the Subscribers being called out on our duty as inspectors of the fishery, He, the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., threatened to shoot us through the heads if we would measure his nets, he not knowing that we had already measured them and found them too long by several fathoms.

And upon our duty at other places, he, the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., did issue a warrant, in consequence of which we were hunted up and down the Country, and taken as felons, and we, the accused, were arraigned before the County with an intent to subject us to a trial for our lives, for no other cause but acting according to the laws of the country and under the duty of our oaths, but we were acquited by the unanimous verdict of the Country. This, with many more accuations which can be proven when required, the said Alex. Taylor, Esq., has rendered himself odious and a pest to the Community.

William Clark
Thomas Loban
Thomas McCullam
John Simpson

Memorial of the above petitioners, that they were appointed and qualifyed as inspectors of the fishery in the Bay, river and its branches of Miramichi, were in the execution of their office grossly insulted and materially injured by Alex. Taylor. Alex. Taylor have not only in the present instance, acted contrary to the duty of his office, but also since his installment thereunto have committed several outrageous actions (too tedious to be inserted in a petition, but hereunto annexed) so that like a running evil in successive gradation, the laws have been openly violated, justice buried in oblivion and forsed to seek an assylum in the abyss of obscurity while licentiousness have marched in triumph, Yea! and by a person in authority. That the effect of power in his hands are as a sword in the hands of madman who void of reason and fear, agitated by the freaks of frantick folly, stricks and smites all around him. Thus the man armed with the sword of justice, whose line of conduct is not founded on the sure basis of moral virtue, who takes not the laws of the land for his guide, not lighted by the lamp of justice and by that sure pilot, unerring reason, but on the contrary actuated by the principles of wanton Caprice, wrecks and abuses he laws which he ought to protect, so hat the publick peace and safety is in danger while power is lodged in is hands. That your Petitioners contious of the bad consequences arising from such a person being in off ice and with full confidence of meeting with every just satisfaction from the hands of him whose characteristick have qualifyed to fill your Excellency’s exalted station, and as subjects availing themselves of their right to petition Respectfully lay their complaint before you, humbly request you would be pleased to take it into your wise consideration and grant us such relief as may seem most proper to you and most conducive to maintain the publick peace and safety of His Majesty’s Subjects under Your Excellency’s government and protection. And your Petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray,

Thomas Loban
Thomas McCullam
William Clark
John Simpson

Endorsed: “At the motion of Messrs. Fraser, Lee and Carpenter, after proper expostulation with Mr. Taylor, and his promise to guard againt any future cause of complaint, the above mentioned Complainants hve consented to withdraw this memorial.


The Petition of Duncan McRae
November 5, 1803

Duncan McRae has been settled sixteen years on Lot No. 7, south side of Miramichi, in which time he has burnt off all the firewood that was on the lot, asks for a piece of hardwood land in rear of said lot, to continue it out to great Napan River, which is ten or twelve chains larger than the ordinary length of the lots in that block.

Endorsed: “In Council, 25 May, 1804, to be Registered”.


The Petition of the Presbyterian Congregation of Miramichi River
August 4, 1809

The Presbyterian Congregation of Miramichi River have at great expense cleared away and fenced in he piece of ground on the point at the confluence of the south west and north west branches of Miramich River, formerly set a part for the purpose of a burying ground, and have at heir own sole expense erected a decent and commodious house for Publick Worship. It not being the intention of your Memorialists of hindering or obstructing any other denomination of Christians from interring their dead in the said burying ground, ask for a grant to the burying ground.

John Urquhart, Minister of the Presbyterian Congregation

William Davidson, Chairman of the Committee for Regulating the Affairs of the Presbyterian Congregation of Miramichi

Certified by Alex. Allan “I certify that the Presbyterian Congregation have made improvements on the burying ground on the point of Miramichi to a large extent for the decent accommodation of the worship of God and to keep the General plan of Interment from being exposed to Hogs, etc.”

Note by G. Sproule: ” A small lot containing a few acres used as a burying ground, has been reserved for that use at the extremity of Beobear’s Point, Miramichi.


The Petition of John Campbell
February 1, 1810

John Campbell came with his stepfather, John McLeod, to this province in year 1803 and has resided since that time on River Tabusintac where he had a lot of 200 acres surveyed for him, on which he began to make improvements, but found the land so bad that it is impracticable to make a farm. Asks for Lot No. 3, on same river surveyed for Robert Black, who has removed to Richibucto, and for the marsh lot belonging to it in addition to his former allotment.

Note by G. Sproule: “the lot was alloted to Robert Blake, applicant must prove that Blake has abandoned the lot, which I suspect is not he case, he having applied to be included in the General Grant”.

Endorsed: “Cannot be complied with”.


The Petition of Alexander Taylor
February 10, 1810

Alex. Taylor, Esq., of Miramichi, was first new settler in Miramichi and made the fourteenth settler in it. That for Martin Lyon’s lot to the entrance of the river, about 26 miles, there was not a single inhabitant. He has been a great instrument in bringing settlers here and populating the place. There is few, if any, that has made such improvements which he can appeal (for the truth of) to Coll. Caylor and Capt. McLean, if he holds no lands in front of Miramichi River, but one lot only and none in any other places that is of any use to him or his numberous family (of 12 children) only a little grass he has been allowed in the Bay, that notwithstanding his neighbours did request of him to frame a mandite from them, directed to James Fraser, Esq., and himself to apply Government for back lands for them, which he’d comply’d with. That your Memorialist in the Interim fell sick almost to Death and was speechless, during which time they were persuaded by an ill designing man to have a petition made out and subscribed, and accompanied by two or three of themselves and left my name out, and it is evident and visible that there are more than one enrolled in the Petiiton or memorial of theirs that hath resided within the space of one year to the time your memorialist has, and at this period they have not one single line that can be called clear, and has preached such Doctrine to others as, let them clear land that could do better, for they should clear as little as possible. That your memorialist hopes your Honor will take this situation and deserving into consideration and allow him 200 acres, bounded by parallel lines with the Lot No. 63 granted him, and which he now resides upon, as he has now nigh one third of it clear, and has to go half back upon it before he can obtain a stick of firewood.

Endorsed: “Complied with”.

Attached: Letter from Alex. Taylor to G. Sproule.

” An Alex. Stewart of this place has told you that you wished David Goodfellow’s son to take up lands at the back of the Lot I reside upon, because I would not buy any more lands. This I think very hard for two reasons, first because I have not been granted any lands that is worth a … there on, only the lot I reside upon and a little Marsh Grass that I got at Point Cheval Lot, the other Beech or Marsh Lots, I have no more than an equal share with the general run of the neighbourhood In short, no man can say that I have an acre of improvable land, only the single lot I live upon, on which I have cleared nigh double of any of my neighbours. It seems very strange to me, Sir, that such as Alex. Hay and Alex. Stewart who possesses each of them three of the best front Lots in Miramichi, and Andrew Hay two lots at Bartibog and one and a very equivalent of mine at Point Cheval, should be thought entitled to back lands. I beg that you will not think that I presume to criticize on your conduct, far from it, its only necessity makes me lay this before you, because its evident that in the course of ten or twelve years hence I shall not have a stck of firewood left on my Lot, and has nowhere else to go to cut any; at Point Cheval were it contiguous as it is rather impracticable to go there, not one single stick of firewood is there only Hecmiteck Swamp, Dugald Campbell, Esq., surveyed for me a piece of vacant land at Bay du Vin betwixt Stymest’s Lot and Thom Iann’s Lot that I purchased from Duncan McCraw, but it is worth nothing now should I paid for surveying it had I not had the land adjoining it, its altogether Swamp and Barron. I hope Sir, you’ll consider and excuse me, for I assure you these is God’s truth. I am very respectfully your very Humble and Obedient servant,

Alex. Taylor.


The Petition of Benjamin Stymest and James William Hierlihy
March 1, 1810

Benjamin Stymest and James William Hierlihy. Stymest is a married man 24 years of age and Hierlihy upwards of 20 years (single) has resided in the county of Northumberland upwards of 20 years, and have no grants, though they understand some land was minuted to them. Styment has the ability to cultivate, and has a large stock of cattle and other property. Hierlihy has six head of cattle and has resided on a farm of his mother’s and brought up to farming and fishing. As for a lot each on north side of River Tabusintac between the Indian location and the land laid out for Jonathan Lufbury, also a piece of vacant marsh on Tabusintac bay lying outside of French grant on beach side of said grant.

Benjamin Stymest Jr.
For Himself and Hierlihy

Certified by P. Campbell of Benjamin Stymest Jr. – is the son of an old loyalist, is an ambitious, sober honest man, and I have ever looked upon him as a good settler. I am not acquuainted with Hierlihy, but I have always understood that the family are respectable people”.


The Petition of Moses Austin
August 4, 1813

Tabusintac. Moses Austin is a single man and a true and loyal subject who has been a resident in Canada and in this province thirteen years and is 33 years of age. In Quebec served three years in Capt. Muir’s uniform Company, City Militia, and last winter three months at Fredericton in Cappt. Macdonald’s company, Northumberland Militia. He has no granted lands in this province, wishes to settle at Tabusintac River. Asks for 200 acres of upland jioning to a tract of land memorialized for (a mill tract) by Benjamin Stymeist at Tabusintac. Certified by William Ferguson, Deputy Surveyor, that this aplication “is really for the purpose of aiding Mr. Stymeist to put up a mill. Applicant is an honest and active member of society and will improve the lands”.

Endorsed: “situation is vacant”. G. Sproule.


The Petition of Catherine Murdock and Others
May 28, 1814

Catherine Murdoch, Alex. Rankin and Hugh McDonald, all of Miramichi, have (by letters under seal of Northumberland July 16) 1813 been appointed and sworn to the faithful administration of all and singular goods, chattles, and estate of John Murdock, late of Miramichi, who died intestate. They sold all the late John Murdock’s personal property, using the proceeds to discharge his debts, and it appears the said Estate will be insolvent. Ask for commisioners to inquire into insolvency and settle claims. Ask for Benjamin Beckwith, William Bannerman and Lewis Henry to be appointed. Amount of acounts exhibited against the Estate of John Murdock deceased £523 … 18 … 5. Amount of sales of personal property £182 .. 4 … 6. Amount of deficiency £341 … 13 … 11.

Endorsed: “27 February 1815, Commissioners to be apponted as within recommended”.

(1) January 28, 1815. James Beckwith, William Bannerman and James Wright, commissioners appointed to inspect the affairs of Jonathon Lufbury, Esq., deceased say that the personal assets will be insufficient to satisfy the demands made against his estate, and it will be necessary to sell a part of his real property. (2) Copy Appraisement of personal property of the late John Murdoch of Miramichi, deceased, taken by John English, Andrew Hay and Duncan McGra on 11 August 1813. Incomplete.|

4 handsaws
2 drawing knives
garden spade
2 pair edge hinges and 6 coopers
currying combs
8 chisels
paint brush
coffee pot
3 joiners moulding planes
tennant saw, beval and square
3 gallon jar
tongues, shovel, brander, frypan, doghouse
writing desk
parcel of tobacco pipes
parcel staves
2 old vats
horse, yolk of oxen
2 steers
1 bull, ewe and lamb
2 pigs
canoe, nets
30 tons 36 feet pine timber
3 kegs
3 chains
old broken fiddle
old watch
scythe and cross cut saw
oxen bows, hoops

Supplementary appraisement of – Sheldrake Island being a property now pointed out to us as belonging to Estate of late John Murdoch which was not shewn to us at time of making first appraisement and which we are of opinion is of value of L350.

John English
Andrew Hay
Duncan McGra

(3) Amounts of accounts exhibited against estate of John Murdoch deceased:

Patrick Taylor  £28… 3… 2 1/4
George Henderson  £3…16… 0
Wiliam Gordon  £12… 0… 0
George Taylor  £11…18…10 1/2
John Taylor Sr.  £29… 0… 0
Benjamin Stymeist  £50… 0… 0
Gilmour and Rankin  £61… 8… 0
Fraser and Davidson  £ 9… 3… 4

TOTAL: £638…18…6 3/4

The effects, as previously listed were sold at Public auction and realized £170…11…6 after duty was paid. Purchasers were: John Taylor, Napan; Duncan McGraw; William Gillies; Peter Henderson; William Loggy; Robert Loggy; George Taylor; Alex. Murdoch; etc.

Notes by Louise Manny:

“Many names, have listed a few”.

“I notice the lamp is listed as an oil lamp – sold for 3s., 3d.; 2
chairs for 17s.; a Ladies’ saddle for L3, 5s.,6d. Almost all prices
exceeded appraisal”.


The Petition of Francis Peabody and Others
January 25, 1815

(1) Estate of the late Jonathan Lufbury, Esq. Balances and notes which appear on books against the following persons:

John Anderson £5, 12s., 2d.
John and Robert Blake £8, 19s.
John Blake £4 , 2s., 6d.
Rev. Jonathon Urquharts Estate £L1, 6s., 8d.

TOTAL £1900, 5s., 8 1/4d.

Many of the debts mentioned in foregoing are not recoverable. Some are utterly denied and others disputed in part by persons against whom they stand charged.

Francis Peabody
Rich Simonds
For Self and others.

(2) List of balances which Estate owes:

John Blake £2, 14s.
George Brown £10, 17s., 11d.
James Brown £2, 14s.
Duffy Gillies 10s., 1d.
Mrs Hierlihy £2
John Henderson, Esq. £18, 6d.
John Ledden £5, 3s.
William Ledden and Sons £1, 18s., 6 1/2d.
John McLeod (Tab.) £2, 4s.
Alex. Murdoch £1, 17s., 11 1/2d.
Peabody and Simonds £1034, 4s., 1/2d.
William O’Dell, Esq. £8, 7s., 11d.
Francis Peabody £557, 9s., 8d.
Otho Robichaud, Esq. £3, 17s., 2 1/2d.
Benjamin Stymest, Jr. £15, 13s.
Benjamin Stymest, Sr. £1, 4s.
William Taylor £2, 14s.

TOTAL £3867, 18s., 6d.

Note by Louise Manny: “Long List – I have only put down some of the names“. 

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