Remarkable High Tories: Supporters of King and Parliament in Revolutionary Massachusetts


Remarkable High Tories: Supporters of King and Parliament in Revolutionary Massachusetts - William H. B. Thomas.

It was neither popular nor altogether safe to be loyal to King and Parliament on the eve of the American Revolution. But for some who were loyal, it was destiny. Throughout the Province of Massachusetts Bay, wealthy landowners with a tradition of holding office under the Crown tended to be loyalists. Two such men in Marshfield were Nathaniel Ray Thomas and Dr. Isaac Winslow, called "remarkable high Tories" by one of their contemporaries. Both descended from families that had provided men prominent in the civil and military life of the town of Plymouth Colony, and later, the Province of Massachusetts Bay. Both possessed extensive property holdings, which, in the tradition of old England, was a mark of gentility and station. Their family histories are intertwined in this account of loyalist activity in Massachusetts. As a child, the author spent time on the farm at Rexhame which had been in the family since the 1750s. As an adult, he received the contents of a trunk comprising more than 1000 family letters, receipts, deeds, manuscripts and legal documents that reveal the history of the Thomas family. There is the story of the two Thomas families in Marshfield-one Loyalist and one Patriot-who were eventually joined in marriage. The granddaughter of the Loyalist married the grandson of the Patriot. These papers also tell the story of the Loyalist, Nathaniel Ray Thomas; his position as a Councilor of the Province; his departure from Boston with the withdrawing British Army; his subsequent loyalist efforts in Nova Scotia and in New York; and his ultimate refuge in England. The years of separation from his wife and children and the reunion of them all in Nova Scotia prior to his death are vividly depicted in the correspondence. The text is extensively annotated, and complemented by several portraits and photographs of family homes. Please Note - Disregard the reference to a genealogical chart in the acknowledgments of this book. No such chart exists as part of this publication.

(2001), 2008, 5½x8½, paper, index, 338 pp.

ISBN: 9780788417054