Planter 2010 Celebration
in Nova Scotia

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250th Anniversary

Cornwallis Township          Horton Township

Newport Township          Falmouth Township

Home Governor’s
1757  ’58  ’59

In 2010 we celebrated the 250th Anniversary of the arrival of the New England Planters (settlers) in Hants and Kings Counties in Nova Scotia.  Under proclamations issued in 1758 and 1759 Governor Lawrence offered free land and attractive terms (including an elected assembly and freedom of religion) to Protestants willing to move to Nova Scotia.  In 1760 the first of the New England Planters settled the townships of Newport, Falmouth, Cornwallis and Horton.  Many Planter descendants still live in the area, some on the original land grants.

Proclamation re Elected Legislature
issued by Governor Lawrence
3 January 1757
For a larger view, click on this image of the original Proclamation issued by Nova Scotia Governor Lawrence in January 1757.
Enlarged view with legible text

Working ancestral land: Descendants of Planters honour 250 years of history …”They got roughly 500 acres (202 hectares) of land per family and that was a huge amount of land for free, and that was at a time when there was virtually no free land in New England, so it was a powerful attraction.” Do you like to try your luck? Go to our website and play lucky pharao. Increased odds for winning! Next year marks the 250th anniversary of the Planters settling in Nova Scotia and a number of celebrations are planned for 2010 and 2011…

Castle Frederick Project …archaeological features in the area of the former Castle Frederick estate at Upper Falmouth, Hants County, Nova Scotia

Cornwallis Township

Liverpool Township

Barrington Township

The New England Emigration by Benjamin Rand
In April, 1759, Major Dennison, Messrs. Jonathan Harris, Joseph Otis and James Fuller, from Connecticut, and John Hicks, from Rhode Island, arrived in Halifax as agents of people in those colonies who propose settling on the lands bordering on the Basin of Minas. In May, the agents, having visited the lands, returned to Halifax, and the four representatives from Connecticut entered into an agreement, on behalf of 330 signers, to settle a township of Mines [sic], joining on the river Gaspereaux. All the propositions were agreed to by the governor in council, on Thursday, 17th of May, 1759; and the forms of grants were accordingly prepared. Other agents visited the province in the following year, and the tide of New England emigration undoubtedly set toward Nova Scotia in 1760. The manner and circumstances of the departure of the people from New England are difficult to determine… The general facts of the migration, can, however, be more readily ascertained. New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut furnished the larger proportion of the emigrants. Portsmouth, Boston, Newport and New London were the chief ports of departure. The townships of Annapolis, Horton, Cornwallis, Falmouth and Liverpool in Nova Scotia received most of the settlers who arrived during the year 1760. The tide of migration continued, and each succeeding year saw large additions to the population of the various townships…

Jonathan Belcher (1710-1776)
Edward Boscawen (1711-1761)
Richard Bulkeley (1717-1800)
Silvanus Cobb (1710-1762)
Bruin R. Comingo (1723-1820)
Robert Denison (1697-1765)
J.F.W. DesBarres (1721-1824)
Charles Lawrence (1709-1760)
Charles Morris (1711-1781)
Silas T. Rand (1810-1889)
Patrick Sutherland ( ? -1766)

John Albro artisan, merchant, office holder, militia officer, and politician; born 6 May 1764 in Newport Township, N.S., son of Samuel Albro and Jane Cole, settlers (New England planters) from Rhode Island.  Albro was an active participant in the social and business life of the capital during the early years of the 19th century. He helped to found or was a member of the Fire Insurance Association of Halifax (1809), the Halifax Marine Insurance Company (1809), the Charitable Irish Society (1809), the Nova Scotia Philanthropic Society (1815), the Halifax Steam Boat Company (1815), and the Halifax Commercial Society (1822). Albro was also grand master of the masonic order in Nova Scotia from 1820 to 1839, acted as a vestryman at St Paul’s Church in 1824 and 1825 and a churchwarden from 1828 to 1834, and for nearly 20 years was a road commissioner and fire warden in Halifax. An active militia officer, he rose to the rank of lieutenant-colonel of the 4th Regiment of Halifax militia on 21 August 1828, and in later years he served as inspector and reporter of dikes and workhouse commissioner. Albro not only helped establish the Fire Insurance Association, the first fire insurance company in British North America, but he also purchased its first policy. This local competition with British-based firms had by 1817 resulted in lower insurance rates for Nova Scotians. Albro also advocated a safe water system for Halifax, joined in the unsuccessful efforts in 1822 to found a local bank, and generally could be considered an active promoter of the interests of the town.

Charles Morris (born 1711 in Boston, Massachusetts, buried 1781 at Windsor, Nova Scotia.) army officer, officeholder, and judge.  In 1746 he was commissioned captain by Governor William Shirley to raise a company of reinforcements for the defence of Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia [see Paul Mascarene]… In 1751 and 1752 Morris surveyed the coast from Port Rossignol (Liverpool) to the Chezzetcook region to examine possible sites for a new township which would house the “Foreign Protestants” then gathered at Halifax. Governor Peregrine Thomas Hopson selected Mirligueche as the site because of its good harbour and at the end of April 1753 accompanied the expedition of Swiss and Germans to the region. From the first landing Morris and his assistant James Monk Sr, with ten settlers to cut the brush, were busy laying out the new town of Lunenburg, and by 18 June he was staking individual lots…

John Hicks …Hicks sailed to Halifax with Robert Denison, Jonathan Harris, Joseph Otis, and Amos Fuller, all agents from Connecticut. On 18 April they met with Lawrence and four of his councillors at the governor’s home. Agreement was quickly achieved on settlement terms, and the agents were taken at government expense in the armed snow Halifax to view the proposed lands. The surveyor general, Charles Morris, accompanied them to aid in the choice of township sites. Rounding Yarmouth, they sailed into the Bay of Fundy, examined the lands along the Annapolis River, and proceeded to Minas Basin. The agents returned to Halifax so well pleased that Denison, Harris, and Otis immediately entered into an agreement with the Council for settlement of the townships of Horton and Cornwallis to the west of Minas Basin. They then returned to New England, but Hicks and Fuller stayed on to present their own plan of action. They chose the site of a former Acadian settlement on the north bank of the Pisiquid (Avon) River opposite Fort Edward (Windsor), where they proposed to bring 100 families, 50 in 1759 and 50 in 1760. On 21 July they were granted 50,000 acres to form the township of Falmouth…

Robert Denison (born 1697 in Connecticut, died 1765 at Hortonville, Nova Scotia) soldier, settler, member of the Nova Scotia assembly.  For most of his life Robert Denison served as a militia officer in New England’s campaigns against the French and Indians. He was elected to the Connecticut General Assembly in 1737 and 1742. In March 1745 he became captain of a company for the expedition against Île Royale (Cape Breton Island) [see Sir William Pepperrell] and served at the capture of Louisbourg that June. Denison was elected to the General Assembly again in 1751, and in March 1755 commissioned a major in the 1st Regiment of Connecticut. Governor Charles Lawrence‘s proclamations of 1758 and 1759 offering free lands to immigrants attracted land-hungry planters (settlers) from southeastern Connecticut to the fertile shores of the Bay of Fundy, vacant since the expulsion of the Acadians in 1755.  Major Denison was one of the agents for the Connecticut grantees who appeared before the Nova Scotia Council in April 1759 to make arrangements for 200 families. Denison was one of the first New England planters elected to the Nova Scotia assembly, taking his seat on 1 July 1761.

William Allen Chipman (born 1757 in Newport, Rhode Island; died 1845 at Cornwallis Township, Nova Scotia) politician, merchant, office holder, justice of the peace, and judge.  In 1761, William Chipman’s family moved to Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley as planters (settlers). The family established a dominant place for itself in the economic, political, and religious life of Kings County, and William became a wealthy merchant and reputedly one of the county’s largest landowners. He also held many public offices: clerk of Cornwallis Township and customs collector for the county, 1794-1845; justice of the peace, 1797-1845; judge of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas, 1821-41; and custos rotulorum, 1841-45. The last three posts had been held for a time by his elder brother John, a member of the House of Assembly for Cornwallis Township from 1776 to 1785. William was also a member of the assembly. He represented Kings County, 1799-1806; Sydney County, 1807-8; Cornwallis Township, 1811-18; Kings County, 1818-26 and 1828-30. His son Samuel succeeded him in 1830 as the member for Kings.

William Henry Chipman (1807-1870) was a member of a prominent Planter family. William Henry Chipman’s grandfather, William Allen Chipman (above), had moved – as part of the New England Planter migration of the 1760s – with his family from Rhode Island to Cornwallis Township where he had eventually built a sizeable fortune as merchant, farmer, and landowner and had held several elective and appointive positions in the county. William Henry’s father carried on the family businesses, established his own large farm, assisted in the founding of Horton Academy (1828) and Acadia College (1838), and held numerous public offices in Kings County, including justice of the peace. There was a well-established family tradition of public service and business enterprise. In addition to his full business career, William Henry Chipman also followed family tradition in local politics. As early as 1832 he began serving as both clerk of the peace and clerk of licences for Kings County, filling the former position for 35 consecutive years. He also served after 1834 as deputy prothonotary, and after 1853 as prothonotary for the county, and between 1842 and 1855 as registrar of the Court of Probate. The climax of Chipmancs public career came in 1867 with his election as an anti-confederate member of parliament for Kings County to the first House of Commons of the new dominion. Elected with a large majority, Chipman joined fellow Nova Scotians in their battle for repeal of the union or better terms for their province. Although a follower of Joseph Howe, Chipman was by no means subservient. At the stormy anti-confederate convention held in Halifax in August 1868, Chipman openly opposed Howe on the best means of obtaining repeal. His parliamentary career was cut short by a sudden and fatal attack of smallpox in the spring of 1870 in Ottawa. The day after his death the house adjourned on the motion of Howe, seconded by Sir John A. Macdonald, and heard eulogies in which even Charles Tupper joined, referring to him as “a member of one of the oldest and most respected families in his Province.”

Samuel Chipman (1790-1891) farmer shipowner, merchant and public servant.  Samuel Chipman was born into a prominent Kings County Planter family. In 1830 he succeeded his father as Reform member of the House of Assembly for Kings County, and he held this seat until 1843. Chipman returned to the legislature in 1851 as the representative for Cornwallis Township and held this seat until 1859. Upon its abolition that year he was elected to represent the north division of Kings County, a position he retained until 1863, when he was appointed to the Legislative Council. In the assembly Chipman, like his father, was principally interested in agriculture and local affairs such as roads, dikes, breakwaters, and bridges. A staunch anti-confederate, in 1869 he supported Joseph Howe and the “better terms” Howe was able to negotiate for Nova Scotia. Twice he served as provincial commissioner to appraise railway damages (payments made, at the time of construction of a railway, to landowners to compensate them for the expropriation of a railway right-of-way across their property), in 1868 for Annapolis County and in 1869 for Kings. When he retired from the Legislative Council in 1870, at the age of 80, he was appointed registrar of deeds for his native county, a position he held for 18 years, until blindness obliged him to retire. When Samuel Chipman died at the age of 101, he was believed to be the oldest Mason in the world and the oldest man in Nova Scotia. He was buried with full Masonic ceremonies, and his funeral drew 1,000 or more people to his home at Chipmans Corner.

Theodore Harding Rand (1835-1900) educator, civil servant, and poet. Descended from New England planter stock, Theodore Harding Rand was raised in Canard and educated in the secular and Sabbath schools of Cornwallis Township. The two formative influences in his youth were the natural beauty of his rural environment, which he subsequently immortalized in verse, and the Baptist Church, which claimed the adherence of nearly half the population of the township. With the accession to power in May 1863 of the Conservative party, led by two prominent Baptists, James William Johnston and Charles Tupper, the cause of public education in Nova Scotia was rapidly advanced. A series of school bills, passed in the legislature between 1864 and 1866, called for the creation of a public school system funded by general assessment. Tupper sought the advice of Forrester and Rand on the details of the 1864 legislation and in May of that year appointed Rand as the new superintendent of education. Most of Rand’s time as superintendent was absorbed in working out the details of the new system. He commissioned a series of locally produced textbooks, supervised the development of blueprints for school buildings, and took great pains to find inspectors who would promote high and uniform standards in the schools across the province. He also introduced the grading system in larger schools and attempted to bring uniformity to the licensing of teachers. His reports outlining the progress made in education under the new regime were models of their kind, offering a variety of statistical charts to demonstrate the truth of his claims. His attention to administrative detail and his faith in the value of education for the improvement of individuals and society marked him as one of the new breed of professional school promoters.

Sir Frederick William Borden (1847-1917) physician, businessman, militia officer, and politician. The son of a popular, public-spirited physician of Planter origin, F. W. Borden was educated at Acacia Villa School in Lower Horton, in Horton Township, Nova Scotia, then at King’s College in Windsor (B.A. 1866), and Harvard Medical School in Boston (M.D. 1868). Upon his return to Nova Scotia, he practised medicine in Canning, a thriving inland port and market town of some 600 people (which had four other physicians). Borden’s political durability, urbanity, geniality, and organizational skills made him an obvious candidate for Laurier’s first cabinet in 1896. His long service in the militia, which he had joined first as a cadet at King’s College and then in 1869 as an assistant surgeon in the 68th (Kings) Battalion of Infantry, his membership in the parliamentary militia lobby, and his continued participation in summer militia camp at Aldershot, N.S., made him an even more logical choice for the Department of Militia and Defence. During his record fifteen years in this post Canada sent some 200 troops in 1898 to help the hard-pressed North-West Mounted Police maintain order in the Yukon gold-fields, and between 1899 and 1902 dispatched 7,300 men to assist the British in the South African War. While an active advocate of Canadian participation in this conflict, he insisted that Canadian units be kept together rather than distributed among British units, and he employed the war to test mobilization, organization, and equipment. Subsequently, he used the returned soldiers’ experience and the public’s enthusiasm to assist in the reform of the militia. During his administration, often seen as the end of the long period of “cool indifference” toward the militia, the departmental estimates tripled and the force was reformed, reorganized, and re-equipped. From the start Borden insisted on an annual drill of the militia, for training had become haphazard and in some years had been dropped altogether. He also began a general housecleaning of the headquarters staff. During his first year and a half he abolished some positions, combined others, and replaced civilians with serving officers. In the next few years examinations were required for promotion to senior posts, schools of instruction were established, the Royal Military College of Canada was reformed, senior officers were sent to Britain for advanced training, and the skeleton of a general staff was created. He increased pay and retirement benefits, established rules regulating tenure of command, decentralized command and administration, and equipped the militia with modern weapons. News of the death in battle in South Africa of the minister’s only son, Harold Lothrop Borden, was received in mid-July 1900. In 1905 he acquired a large central training base near Petawawa, Ontario, and in 1909 it was from this base that John Alexander Douglas McCurdy undertook, on his authorization, the first military test flight of an airplane in Canada. Borden was considered by some of his contemporaries, including members of the opposition, to have been the best minister of militia to date; in the words of the British military magazine the Broad Arrow in 1901: “No Minister of Militia has ever done so much toward making the Canadian forces so thoroughly effective and ready for the field as he,” an assessment with which contemporary historians would concur.

Mary Jane Katzmann (1828-1890) poet, editor, and historian. Her mother, Martha Prescott, was descended from a prominent New England planter family. Living amid cultured surroundings, Mary Jane displayed a precocious intelligence and an early interest in literature. She could read at the age of three, and, with the guidance of her family, was largely self-educated. Her early poetical efforts, which Joseph Howe is said to have encouraged, appeared in various local newspapers. In January 1852, at age 24, Mary Jane Katzmann became editor of the Provincial, or Halifax Monthly Magazine, and under her expert guidance it became possibly the best of the early Nova Scotian periodicals. The format and printing were superior, and the quality of the contributions was commendable. Her later literary efforts included the History of the townships of Dartmouth, Preston and Lawrencetown, Halifax County, N.S., for which she received the Thomas Beamish Akins Historical Prize from King’s College, Windsor, in 1887. This collection of vignettes concerning early individuals and settlement in the Dartmouth area was based on an earlier series carried in the Provincial; it remains her enduring contribution to Canadian literature.

Montagu Wilmot ( ? -1766) military officer, governor of Nova Scotia.  Wilmot was appointed lieutenant governor of Nova Scotia on 14 March 1763, succeeding Jonathan Belcher, but did not arrive at Halifax from Quebec until September. That fall Henry Ellis resigned the governorship of Nova Scotia, and in May 1764 Wilmot assumed this office. The province was suffering from heavy debts and deficits when he became governor, for almost the whole British naval and military establishment had been withdrawn from Halifax, and with it the revenue from duties on the sale of liquor. The British parliamentary grant had been drastically reduced in recent years as well. Wilmot was repeatedly warned by the Board of Trade to avoid extravagant expenditures such as those made while Belcher was in office. During Wilmot’s régime between 2½ and 3½ million acres of provincial land were granted, unwisely, to local and foreign speculators, although it is unfair to blame Wilmot alone for this activity. A royal proclamation of 7 Oct. 1763 had encouraged settlement in Great Britain’s newly conquered possessions of Florida, Quebec, and Nova Scotia – which now included Cape Breton and the Island of St. John (Prince Edward Island) – and forbade settlement west of the Appalachians. Wilmot protested that these new instructions, which offered unlimited grants and imposed few responsibilities on the grantees, opened the way for speculation. He delayed making new and large grants to Alexander McNutt, a major speculator, and appealed to the Board of Trade for more stringent regulations; the board failed to reply. Wilmot finally granted McNutt’s request for land in the fall of 1765, but insisted that if some settlers were not placed upon any grant within four years it could be escheated by the crown.

Alexander McNutt (1725-c.1811) army officer, colonizer, and land agent.  Between April and November 1760 McNutt served as a Massachusetts provincial captain at Fort Cumberland (formerly Fort Beausejour) near Amherst, Nova Scotia, and he was also engaged that year in raising troops for the reduction of Canada. It was about this time that McNutt first became involved in the colonization of Nova Scotia. He apparently worked initially as a deputy for Thomas Hancock, the Boston agent of Governor Charles Lawrence, recruiting settlers for the former Acadian lands advertised by Lawrence in January 1759. That August he was in Halifax, N.S., where he secured a written promise from Lawrence of seven townships for himself and some associates on condition that he introduce Protestant settlers. One month after the governor’s death in October 1760, McNutt appeared before the Nova Scotia Council to claim the promised townships. Besides mentioning his agreement with Lawrence, he stated that he had obtained 850 subscribers for the promised lands, that he had agents in Ireland and America, and that he had already sent a vessel to Ireland to bring out settlers. During the spring of 1761 a group of about 50 families he had recruited from New Hampshire arrived in the region of Cobequid (near Truro), where they received grants of land…

James Wilberforce Longley (1849-1922) journalist, lawyer, politician, judge, and author. Longley’s New England Planter ancestor settled in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis County about 1760. Longley was a frequent public speaker and prolific writer, especially on historical and political subjects. Elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1898, a rare honour for an active politician, he became its vice-president in 1916 and honorary president in 1917. President of the Nova Scotia Historical Society from 1897 to 1905, he played a major role in the 1899 sesquicentenary of the founding of Halifax, which was grandly celebrated, and in the tercentenary of Annapolis Royal in 1904. Longley was elected a corresponding member of the Massachusetts Historical Society in 1908. As attorney general for Nova Scotia, under Premier George Murray, Longley initiated legislation that gave the attorney general, rather than judges of the Supreme Court, the power to appoint lawyers to carry on criminal prosecutions in the counties. An act of 1888 provided a standard process for the incorporation of towns. A number of reforms arose in response to Nova Scotia’s industrial revolution of the 1880s and 1890s. A major revision of company law was undertaken in 1900, at the same time that the employer’s common-law defence of contributory negligence was abolished in suits by employees for workplace accidents. The province’s first factories act was passed in 1901, regulating the employment of women and children and requiring some safety measures, but it was a rather tentative effort. One of the most notable legacies of the Longley era was the plethora of new legislation dealing with children, which also included laws providing for the reform of juvenile offenders, forbidding the provision of tobacco and opium to children, regulating their hours of work, instituting equal custody rights for parents, licensing nursing homes for infants, and permitting adoption…

Edward Manning Saunders (1829-1916) Baptist clergyman and author. Born into a family of New England planter descent, Edward Manning Saunders entered Acadia College in Wolfville in 1854, where he was instrumental in instigating a revival which swept the college, Horton Academy, and the town the following year and resulted in the conversion of many of those who would later be denominational leaders, such as Daniel Morse Welton and Theodore Harding Rand. Saunders’s call to the prestigious Granville Street Baptist Church (now First Baptist) in Halifax in 1867 was a sign of his growing importance within the denomination. Saunders’s interest in history had probably been awakened at Acadia, where as a student he came under the powerful influence of John Mockett Cramp. His most important work is History of the Baptists of the Maritime Provinces (Halifax, 1902), based on original research as well as Cramp’s denominational history. Saunders’s Three premiers of Nova Scotia: the Hon. J. W. Johnstone, the Hon. Joseph Howe, the Hon. Charles Tupper… (Toronto, 1909) is still frequently referred to, but reflects the strong 19th-century Maritime Baptist bias against Joseph Howe and Saunders’s preference for his coreligionists James William Johnston and Charles Tupper. To the end of his life Saunders remained interested in new ideas and experiences. In 1915, at the age of 86, he lamented the departure of a flotilla of submarines from Halifax Harbour before he managed to get on board one of them. A highlight of his last years was dinner with the educational leader Booker Taliaferro Washington.

Harris Harding (1761-1854) educator and Baptist minister. Although born in Nova Scotia in the early years of New England planter settlement of the province, young Harris Harding returned to Connecticut in the 1770s with his parents, among the many who decided that “Nova Scarcity” was not as attractive as they had been led to believe. Harding is said to have served during the American revolution on a rebel boat conveying goods from New York to Boston, and on one occasion was held briefly by the British as a suspected spy. Harding returned to Horton Township in Nova Scotia in 1783 with his father, who received a land grant from the British government. His years in Connecticut meant that Harris had received a better education than most of his later colleagues, and he kept school in Cornwallis Township for several years after his return. In the late 1780s Harding began exhorting and preaching in Kings and Hants counties. From 1790 he used Liverpool as a base for preaching forays to such places as Yarmouth and Shelburne. Harding had the satisfaction of stirring several major awakenings within his own community at Yarmouth. The first and most impressive had come in 1806, when 150 new converts were made and most of his congregation were baptized by immersion. Another less intense revival occurred in 1812-13, and they happened sporadically throughout Harding’s pastorate of nearly sixty years.

Isaac Deschamps merchant, office holder, judge, and politician. Born c.1722, died 11 Aug. 1801 in Windsor, N.S.  With the creation of counties in 1759 he became the first member of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly for Annapolis County, and between 1761 and 1770 he served for Falmouth Township. Between 1770 and 1783 he represented Newport Township in the assembly, and also acted as clerk of the house. On the local scene, Deschamps served as a trustee for school lands at Horton, Falmouth, and Newport, and a prime mover in the establishment of a chapel at Windsor in 1771. The onset of the American revolution brought new duties: in 1776 he was made barrack master at Fort Edward, and on 27 August of the same year he became first assistant judge of the Supreme Court. In 1781 he was appointed a justice of the peace and judge of probate in Hants County.

James Monk (c.1717-1768) merchant, surveyor, justice, solicitor general of Nova Scotia.  In the fall of 1759 Monk and the other justices applied for land grants on the Bay of Fundy. According to Monk, the distribution by Charles Morris of some 25,000 acres of land around the Pisiquid (Avon) River was unfair, favouring council members over other applicants. (The grant established this area as a centre of country estates for Halifax councillors and officials.) Monk also charged that because of his complaints against the chief surveyor’s conduct, Morris refused him the support to maintain “chainmen” for his surveying work. Monk claimed he was finally forced to sell his office to Morris’s son in December 1759. The following March the council recommended that Governor Charles Lawrence withdraw Monk’s commissions as justice because of non-attendance at court. Monk had then to fall back on “the Practice of the Law, as the only resource for a Subsistence for his Family.” In July 1760 Lawrence appointed him solicitor general of Nova Scotia, though without regular salary. Five children survived him, including James, who became attorney general of the province of Quebec, and George Henry, who became a chief justice of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia.

The Wayback Machine has archived copies of
On the Trail of the Scots:
Settlers of King’s County, Nova Scotia

by Allen B. Robertson
Celtic Heritage, (date unknown)

Archived: 2003 August 06

This image is on the cover of the 2007 reprint of Esther Clark Wright's book 'Planters and Pioneers, Nova Scotia 1749-1775'. Planters and Pioneers, Nova Scotia, 1749-1775 by Esther Clark Wright, reprinted 2007.  Did you know that many millions of people across North American descended from a large group of settlers who came to Nova Scotia prior to the American Revolution?  Did you know that an accomplished historian compiled a comprehensive index of those pre-Loyalist settlers but it fell out of print not long afterwards due to the passing of the author?…

Recollections of an Old Soldier: The Life of Captain David Perry (1741-1826) – A soldier of the French and Revolutionary Wars, written by himself Chapter IV: Nova Scotia 1760-61, New England Planters in the Minas Country …We set out from Halifax by water, and went to the head of the Bason to fort Sackfield, about twelve miles distant; from that place we went by land about thirty miles through the woods, and then came into a fine open country.  There was a fort here, called Fort Pisga, with a considerable number of troops in it.  Beside this fort ran a large river, of the same name, (Pisga River) over which we passed in boats, into the Menus (Minas) country.  The people had laid out two towns, one called Horton, and the other Cornwallis.  We were stationed at the latter, it being the farthest from Fort Pisga.  We had a very agreeable time of it, among our own country people, and built a picket fort there; but there was not much need of it, for the French and Indians were quite peaceable, and to all appearance friendly…

When Kings and Hants Counties were one by Ed Coleman.  Kings County was one of the original five counties of the province… It included most of what is now Hants County and part of what is now Cumberland County and Colchester County.  If you weren’t aware of this, some of the references to the Kings-Hants area in community history books and documents, covering the period from 1759-81, would be puzzling.  The five original counties were established in 1759, several years after the Acadian expulsion and a few years before the Planters arrived.  Kings County remained king-sized until 1781 when Hants County was created.  History books and archive documents have numerous references to the confusing 22-year period when Kings and Hants Counties were one…

The Settlers of ‘Ye Town of Canard’ by Ed Coleman.  In 1758 and again in 1759, the governing council of Nova Scotia issued proclamations in the Boston Gazette stating that the opportunity was presented for “peopling and cultivating … lands vacated by the French…” In the Public Archives of Nova Scotia is a document from 1759 containing a list of approximately 54 settlers who were destined for “Ye Town of Canard” in the Kings County township of Cornwallis. The document is listed in the bibliography titled New England Planters in the Maritime Provinces, and it’s a preliminary list of persons prepared to settle in Kings County… One of the documents indicates that during the American Revolution, some of the Planter settlers in Kings County expressed sympathy with their country of origin.  It appears that Nova Scotia’s governing council had grounds to be concerned.  In the Archives is a notice dated early in 1778 requiring that “all persons in Kings County who have not taken an oath of allegiance to King George III must do so before the end of June…”

Society taking Burlington’s cemetery care in hand by Phil Vogler.  …Burlington, Kings County is an Annapolis Valley community on the North Mountain, named after Richard Boyle, Third Earl of Burlington. The village site was part of Cornwallis Township, granted to New England emigrants in 1759 and 1761. The cemetery is located at the corner of Barley Street and the Hamilton Road, and is a short distance from Harbourville, Garland and Viewmount…

Local author on ‘Starting Over’ by Anne Bird.  Back in 1758…after reading and advertisement in the Boston papers about settlers being needed to plant the land left by the deported Acadians, they took a chance and relocated. Glenn’s ancestor Joshua Ells, a weaver by trade was among the 8,000 Planters who came to the Cornwallis Township and other townships in Nova Scotia and parts of New Brunswick… Five townships on the South Shore were all occupied by fishermen from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Here in the Valley, however, they were farmers… By 1770, ten years after the first settlers arrived, the population of Nova Scotia was 20,000. Three quarters of them New England Planters or their descendents…

A logo for celebrating 250 years in Liverpool and Queens Queens County is getting a logo for its 250th anniversary, one that will last for four years…

This is a map showing the migration routes followed by the New England Planters in the 1760s.

Board of Trade: Nova Scotia – 1758
Board of Trade: Nova Scotia – 1759
Board of Trade: Nova Scotia – 1760
Board of Trade: Nova Scotia – 1761

 The period 2012-2014 is the 200th anniversary of the 
War of 1812 1812-1814
Includes important events in Nova Scotia,
New England and Newfoundland.

Go To:   Nova Scotia Quotations

Go To:   Nova Scotia History – Chapter One

Go To:   Nova Scotia in the War of 1812

Go To:   Nova Scotia Historical Biographies

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Photographs of the Moose River railway bridge

Photographs of the Bear River railway bridge

Photographs of the Sissiboo River railway bridge

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Ivan Smith

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First uploaded to the WWW:   10 November 2009
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