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Proving Dad Was Right!

The American Revolutionary War was the defining point of where loyalties were placed and how people were judged because of their loyalties. It brought out the best and worst of human behavior. Over two centuries later, we still look back on that period in history with overwhelming pride in our ancestors' decisions to stick by their guns and fight for what they believed was right, whether he be a patriot or loyalist.

It is this pride and sense of honour that we join lineage societies such as the United Empire Loyalists Association of Canada - UELAC, or the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution - DAR and SAR. These organizations, although representing two sides of the war, have more similarities than differences. The are involved in educating the youth about their heritage and preserving the history of their nation. They both require genealogical proof of heredity that entitles the person to bear the initials U.E., SAR and DAR after the person's name. The ancestor had to be involved in the military, or aided the military, or been in some way beneficial to the cause.

I have a few ancestors who qualified as Loyalists as well as one that is recognized by the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution. I decided, since I am Canadian, I would like to be certified by the UELAC, to honour my Loyalist ancestors and their beliefs.

My Loyalist ancestor, Joseph Haines, Sr., was also my fourth greatgrandfather. He served in Butler's Rangers along with his son, Nathaniel Haines, who was my third greatgrandfather. Anyone with a proven Loyalist ancestor can be certified, no matter where they live now.

But, if I were in the USA, I would probably seek certification with the Daughters of the American Revolution. My American ancestor, Joseph Hawkins, born in Maryland in 1753, was my sixth great-grandfather, and he fought in the battle of King's Mountain and other skirmishes in the Tennessee area. He was Col. David Crockett's uncle.

It isn't for bragging rights that I wish to be certified, I want to help preserve the history of our country, and be involved with educating the youth of our nation while at the same time, I want to learn as much about my Loyalist heritage as I can, and pass what I've learned on to the future generations of my family. Most of all, I'm doing it for my dad, Earl Hines, who has always been interested in the history of Upper Canada and "knew" he had Loyalist ancestry. He didn't know what our Loyalist ancestor's names were, he didn't even know that our surname was changed, but I have the proof and I am proving that dad was right!

Earl Hines 1926-1996

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