Return of Persons actually residing in the Township of Hope (1799)



The following text has been taken from Harold Reeve's, History of the Township of Hope (Cobourg; Cobourg Sentinel-Star, 1967). Mr. Reeve, a former Township officer, published this most informative book as a Centennial project.



Elias Smith's Report...

It had been the custom in the American Colonies to grant large tracts of land to individuals with the understanding that they would bring in settlers and develop the land. This was tried in the Township of Hope. Elias Smith, Abraham Walton and Jonathan Walton petitioned the Government in 1792 to open the Township for settlement with the agreement that when they had brought in forty settlers, the Township would be granted to the petitioners.

By 1799 Simcoe had been replaced and the new Lieutenant-Governor evidently read the fine print. Here is the report from the Canadian Archives Q-CCXCV 144:

1799 Township of Hope report on original nominee who undertook to settle the township had not brought in new settlers but those already settled in the province. All grants to be held up until confirmation of residence in township is given and five acres cleared and house built. Then the deed must be taken in three months or lot declared open.

In the following letter from Elias Smith to the Hon. Peter Russell, he calls himself the late nominee, so evidently the contract had expired by June of 1799. Of the other two who contracted to settle the township, Abraham Walton was dead some time before 1801 and Jonathan was not a resident. He returned to the United States and by bringing trading goods by schooner, and by efforts to persuade Americans to come to Hope Township, he maintained an interest in the settlement.

To His Honor Peter Russell, Esquire, President administering the Government of Upper Canada In Council.

The Memorial of Capt. Elias Smith late nominee of Township of Hope humbly sheweth that your memoralist in the summer of 1797 gave into the Surveyor General's Office a return of persons settled in the Township of Hope, and of sundry locations made under warrants of Survey.

That having lately made a strict examination of the present actual settlers in the said township, your memoralist finds that several alterations have taken place since his last return. Your memoralist, therefore, respectfully begs leave to lay before your Honor in Council a Return of the present settlers in the township which he humbly submits to your Honor's wisdom -- and as in duty bound will ever pray.

York 16 June 1799
Elias Smith

Return of Persons actually residing in the Township of Hope; with others who have been residents therein, but have now left the settlement:
 Heads of familiesWives - persons 21 years of ageNumber of childrenRemarks
1Elias Smith Jun. U.E.   
2Philp Pother U.E.110 
3Chris Markle U.E.11 
4Francis Fike U.E.12 
5John Pother U.E.   
6Samuel Marsh U.E.12Residing in the township and have received their warrants of survey
7Peter Stoner U.E. 1Stoners were settled near York before they went to Hope
8John Stoner U.E.15 
9Henry Stoner U.E.   
10Benj. Marsh U.E.   
11John Vandercar U.E.   
12Jonathan Bedford Sr. U.E.16 
13Catherine Sculthorpe widow U.E. 2Daughter of Capt. Elias Smith, widow of Ja. Sculthorpe, in township, has no lands
14Myndert Harris U.E.15Settled in the township and have their warrants of survey
15Ralph Vandercar U.E.15This man R.V. was settled before in Ernest Town by his own confession. June 18/99
16Jonathan Bedford U.E.14In the township but has no lands
17Paul Bedford U.E.1 In the township under warrant of survey
18Peter Smith U.E.  Gone on business to Jamaica but is expected to return in the course of the year; in the meantime his improvements will be carried on. Has received his warrant of survey
19Mrs. Ann Ashford widow   
20James Stevens16 
21David Crippen18 
22John True16 
23John Odell17 
24Nath. Haskill17 
25Leonard Soper15 
26Wm. Holmes Peck13 
27Nathan Walton11Settled in the township
28Seth Soper1 (#28-37) Received their warrants of survey excepting Wm. Daly & Ephraim Gifford, the latter was included in the general petition of July 1797 but by some mistake his warrant has not issued, he has made considerable improvement on his lot
29Pethiel Soper12 
30George Davis   
31Daniel Crippen   
32Joseph Haskill    
33Lewis Peck   
34John Low   
35Asa Brewer   
36Wm. Daly1  
37Ephraim Gifford   
38John Vanzante12Soldier in His Majesty's Service in America during the war, now in this town, has not received any lands.
There is mention of a Peter Vanzante being banished from Upper Canada just prior to 1812 for not taking the Oath of Allegiance. He is reported to have gone to York instead, where his daughter, Stella, was buried. (08 Aug 1968:Evening Guide)
39Wm. Cornwell17In the township will send imm. for family
40Aaron Scribner  In the township will send imm. for family
41Thadeus Gilbert  Now at the Presqu'ile Bay of Quinte, expects his family daily and will then settle in the township
42Eurial McMinus  In the township. These last five persons have not received and lands but pray for grants under the new regulation
John Copp - now in the township, exchanged his location therein for a Lot in Hamilton and that for one in Murray which last he sold to Alex. Chisholm Esq.

Solomon Fuller - formerly entered for a lot in the township which he occupied for a time and made a small improvement thereon but is now settled at the Carrying Place, Bay of Quinte.

Hugh Walker - late of the township -- now settled with his family in the Bay of Quinte, left a small improvement on his location in Hope.

Wm. Johnson - late of Hope where he made a small improvement; now resides in the Bay of Quinte.

John Burns U.E. - located in the township, is now at the Grand Portage in Service of the North West Company, is expected to return in the course of the year to improve his land.

Samuel Jackson --- received in July 1797 a warrant of survey for the lot located by him in Hope; he has made a small improvement on it, and is now in the States where it is said he had offered the lot for sale and does not intend to return to the Province -- he has lately ordered some other improvement to be made on the lot in the expectation of securing it.

Asa Soper --- I cannot say if he be in the township or not or what improvement he has made on his location.

John Cop --- is now in Hope, where it is said he has purchased another lot.

These six persons were located in the township and in July 1797 received their warrant of survey -- they have since gone to the United States, and are not returned to the Province.
Hiram Barns
Daniel Churchill
David Scott
Ebinezer Wills
Wm. Marsh U.E.
John Scram U.E. - This man is said to be settled in the County of Lincoln, where it is said he has located 100 acres, and 200 in Hope on his certificate for 300 acres as a soldier.

Recapitulation of the actual settlers in Hope:
Heads of Families, etc. - 41
Wives - 23
Children - 103
Total - 167

York 16 April, 1799
Elias Smith

Peter and Barbara Bolton - Port Hope, Ontario
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