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Dual ceremony for Loyalists at Glenwood

War of 1812 salute. -Peggy deWitt photo

War of 1812 salute. -Peggy deWitt photo

In a dual ceremony marking decades of service to the Queen and Canada, two United Empire Loyalists were honored at Glenwood Cemetery in Picton.

The grave of William Johnson, U.E., a veteran of the War of 182 and one of the first settlers of Prince Edward County, was presented with a foot stone commemorating his service during that war by the Graveside Project of the Government of Canada.

Dressed in period costumes are Lyn Downer, left, as a Saper or Pioneer and Seaghan Hancocks, who is fourth-great grandson of William Johnson and son of Elizabeth Hancocks. -Peggy deWitt photo

Dressed in period costumes are Lyn Downer, left, as a Saper or Pioneer and Seaghan Hancocks, who is fourth-great grandson of William Johnson and son of Elizabeth Hancocks. -Peggy deWitt photo

“The object of the project is to trace and mark the graves of as many of the veterans of that nation-building conflict as possible,” says Seaghan Hancocks web administrator of a site called www.1812veterans.ca

“Not much is known about William’s service beyond the fact that he was a member of 1st Militia Prince Edward County, served with Jacob Shortt (his daughter-in-law’s father) and both were at the Battle of Queenston Heights when Brock was killed.”

Johnson is Hancocks’ four-great-grandfather. Hancocks and other re-enactors were dressed in uniforms of the day at Glenwood, where his mother, Elizabeth Johnson Hancocks, C.G., U.E., was laid to rest in the family burying ground, and a U.E. Marker placed on her grave.

Libby Hancocks

Libby Hancocks

For more than half a century, Elizabeth was Dominion Genealogist of the United Empire Loyalist Association of Canada, and is responsible for compiling and editing Loyalist Lineages of Canada, a volume that attempts to trace the family lines of every known Loyalist in the country.

She was awarded the Bicentennial Medal for her services to Loyalist Genealogy, as well as the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Medal, and most recently the Dorchester Award for her work.

She first became interested in genealogy in 1962 as a result of the accidental excavation of a family cemetery during a construction project at Finch and Dufferin Avenues in Toronto. She was a founding member of the first branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society in Toronto, and has been a member of the United Empire Loyalist Association of Canada since 1962.

Her son notes her personal interests in Prince Edward County led to publishing information, census and cemetery data about the area.

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