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Saint Croix Courier, St. Stephen, NB
September 7, 1893

GLIMPSES OF THE PAST

Contributions to the History of Charlotte County and the Border Towns.

LXXXI – THE EVACUATION OF CASTINE.

In 1783, Washington wrote to Sir Guy Carleton:-

I had the honor to receive your letter of the 3d of October, acquainting me with the arrangements your Excellency had made for the removal of the troops and stores of his Britannic Majesty from the Post of Penobscot.

It would seem to have taken nearly three months to carry out the arrangements mentioned.

After the evacuation of New York, Nov. 25, Fort George, at Castine, was still held by the British; and it was the last fort in the territory of the new republic from which the king’s troops were withdrawn.  The soldiers of this garrison belonged to the 74th Highlanders.  To those of them who chose to remain in America after they were disbanded, lands were allotted on the Digdeguash.  The formal discharge of one of the garrison, Dugald Clarke,1 bears date at Fort George, Dec. 24, 1783.

Whether the winter was passed at Castine or at Halifax seems now uncertain.  In March, 1784, however, the Highlanders arrived at St. Andrews, where they found four feet of snow on the ground.  Others are said to have landed at St. George’s, (L’Etang,) at the same time, to join the Loyalists and others who were there awaiting the location of their lands.

One of the parole books of the 74th at Fort George is still in existence,2 and it is curious to notice in the list of officers that every one was named Campbell.  Some of the blank pages of this book were used as an account book at a later date by a man whose name does not appear; and they contain a ‘List of cattel brought down in the sloop from Penobscot.’  Under date of June 20, 1784, separate charges appear against each of the following names, with mention of the number of cattle and other live stock brought for each, and the bill of expenses incurred:-

Ebenezer Greenlaw James Rusel
Matthew Linburner Mr. Thomson
Jonethean Greenlaw Daniel Brown
Alex. Greenlaw Mr. Cooksons
John Nason Mr. William Sween

These are all the entries now remaining legible; but there appear to have been many more.

There seems to have been constant communication with Penobscot while the Loyalists were building their towns; and some of the first houses erected at St. Andrews were framed at Castine.


1Now in possession of his grandson, Mr. William Rollins, St. Andrews; as is also a drum stick used by the British in the battle of Bunker’s Hill.

2In possession of C. E. O. Hatheway esq., St. Andrews.


Addition: Article XCVI contains the following addition to this one: "After the word ‘Digdeguash,’ in the eleventh line of the fourth paragraph, insert ‘and the Schoodic.’" (The eleventh line is the third line here.)

Correction: Article C contains the following correction to this one:

"Erase the statement that in the list of officers of the 74th at Fort George in 1780 every one was named Campbell.  The following is a copy of the list which is pasted in the old parole book of the garrison, now in possession of Mr. C. E. O. Hatheway, St. Andrews:-

Lieutenant Colonel John Campbell.
Major John Campbell.
Captain Archibald Campbell.
Captain Archibald Campbell, Jr.
Captain John Campbell.
Lieutenant Archibald Campbell.
Lieutenant Colin Campbell, Sr.
Lieutenant Colin Campbell. (2)
Lieutenant Colin Campbell. (3)
Lieutenant Colin Campbell. (4)
Lieutenant Kenneth Campbell.
Ensign Archibald Campbell.
Ensign Donald Campbell.
Ensign John Campbell, Jr.

(The names of the three younger Lieuts. Colin Campbell are followed by certain distinguishing names which it is not easy to decipher.)

Mr. Hatheway writes, ‘I see in glancing over the orders a number of Stewarts, McLeans, Camerons and Walkers.  I presume that the above names have been put there only to show the number of Campbells in the regiment.'

Mr. Hatheway is willing to part with the book; and it should find a place in the library of some historical society."