John Arnold
1st Regiment York Militia

John Arnold was born in 1769 in Perth Amboy of the New Jersey colony that was later to become part of the United States.  John Arnold Senior fought on the side of the British in the New Jersey forces during the American Revolution.  When their land was confiscated in New Jersey in 1784, John Senior, with his wife and ten children, was granted 1000 acres in Nova Scotia.  However, by 1797 the Arnold family, attracted by the land offers of John Graves Simcoe had settled in the York area.

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1st Regiment York Militia

Jacob Rawn
1st Regiment York Militia

Jacob Rawn was born 17 Aug 1767 to Johan Rheinuh and Maria Elisabeth(?) His god parents were Jacob Dinges and Michel Seitzer. Jacobs’ family were refugees who had fled the war ravaged lands of the Palatine in 1709. At that time, Queen Anne of Britain offered them refuge in England where thousands of Palatines camped in tents around the walls of London.

A North American Indian leader who was brought to London from the New World viewed these destitute people and offered them some of his hunting grounds to settle on. Ten ships sailed to the province of New York. Many died on the way, but the survivors were hardy folk and successfully  pioneered what is now upper New York state. It was not easy as they endured and fought alongside the British in the French & Indian Wars and later  for the American side in the American Revolutionary War in 1776.

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1st Regiment York Militia

David Bridgford
3rd Regiment York Militia

The Colonel was a prominent and colourful figure in the history of Richmond Hill.  Numerous references to him and his contributions to early society in Upper Canada have been found, particularly in the book, Early Days in Richmond Hill: A History of the Community to 1930 by Robert M. Stamp.

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3rd Regiment York Militia

Major Burritt
2nd Regiment of Grenville Militia

Major Burritt was born in Arlington, Vermont on 13 October 1775.  He was one of 12 children, and the youngest son, of Daniel Burritt, Sr. (1735-1827) and Sarah Collins (1733-1815) of Connecticut, later Vermont, and finally Augusta Township, Grenville County, Ontario.  Daniel Burritt Sr., a confirmed United Empire Loyalist, fought at the Battle of Saratoga when Major was just under two years of age.

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2nd Regiment of Grenville Militia

James Kerby, 2nd Regiment Lincoln Artillery

Kerby was a militia officer, businessman, Justice of the Peace, office holder, and politician; b 1785 at Park Farm near Sandwich (Windsor, Ont.), son of John Kerby and Alison Donaldson; m 1811 Jane Lambert, and they had three children; d 20 June 1854 at Fort Erie, Upper Canada.

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Alexander Fraser
49th (Hertfordshire)
Regiment of Foot

A son of Peter Fraser Sr. b 1789 in Fort Augustus, Invernesshire, Scotland. At age 18, he is a drummer in the 10th Royal Veteran Battalion, arriving in Quebec in 1807. Transferred to 49th Regiment of Foot in 1810 as Private. By 1813, he is a Sergeant, serving in the 49th Regiment of Foot, under General Vincent in the Niagara Frontier.

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49th (Hertfordshire)
Regiment of Foot

Titus Simons
2nd Regiment York Militia

Community Life

  • editor & publisher of Canada’s first newspaper, The Upper Canada Gazette
  • built an industrial empire on the 2nd Conc consisting of a grist mill, a saw mill, ashery, cooperage, stables, hog pens, and 13 dwellings for his employees
  • helped found the Burlington Board of Agriculture
  • member of Masonic Lodge (Union Lodge #24)
  • laid the cornerstone of the Ancaster Free Church
  • was appointed the first Sheriff of the Gore District (Hamilton and its vicinity)

Military Life

  • was commissioned as Adjutant in the 1st Regiment Lincoln Militia
  • held the rank of Lieutenant in the 2nd Regiment Lincoln Militia
  • when war was declared in 1812 he  was Captain in the 2nd Regiment York Regiment
  • aided in the capture of the American Fort Niagara
  • commanded the volunteers and militia at Black Rock and Buffalo
  • appointed Major and was in command at Lundy’s Lane until wounded
  • Sir Peregrin Maitland wrote of Titus Geer Simon that he,

“served with active zeal and intelligence from the commencement of the war with the United States, his general character and conduct in the command of a Regiment of Militia highly respectable, and his loyalty and attachment to His Majesty’s Government undoubted.”