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Loyalism, patronage and enterprise : the Servos family in British North America, 1726-1942

Author: J Anthony Doyle; Ken Cruikshank; McMaster University. Department of History.
Publisher: ©2006.
Dissertation: Ph. D. McMaster University 2006
Edition/Format:   Thesis/dissertation : Document : Thesis/dissertation : Biography : eBook   Computer File : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The Servos family came to America from the German Palatinate in 1726, and ultimately settled on New York's frontier. With the patronage of Sir William Johnson, the family acquired mills on the Charlotte River in Tryon County shortly before the revolution. The family was not the elite or lower ranks but rather were of the middling classes. During the revolution, the family's loyalist sympathies led to the family head
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Details

Genre/Form: Genealogy
History
Named Person: Servos family.; Servos family.
Material Type: Biography, Document, Thesis/dissertation, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: J Anthony Doyle; Ken Cruikshank; McMaster University. Department of History.
ISBN: 9780494282427 0494282428
OCLC Number: 237214250
Notes: Supervisor: K. Cruikshank.
Description: 1 PDF file (viii, 370 pages : illustrations, maps, genealogical table)
Details: Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Responsibility: by J. Anthony Doyle.

Abstract:

The Servos family came to America from the German Palatinate in 1726, and ultimately settled on New York's frontier. With the patronage of Sir William Johnson, the family acquired mills on the Charlotte River in Tryon County shortly before the revolution. The family was not the elite or lower ranks but rather were of the middling classes. During the revolution, the family's loyalist sympathies led to the family head being killed by patriot forces and to the sons then joining the British military. After the war ended, the family tried first to re-establish their lives in the newly formed United States, but eventually joined the loyalist migration to Upper Canada. There, they successfully established new mills using the patronage extended by the British government to loyalists. In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the family fell victim to circumstance when their mills became redundant in the Niagara economy, and eventually they needed to sell their lands to pay debts.

The family's success could not have been achieved without their entrepreneurial qualities and knack for seizing opportunities and responding to the challenges of the frontier and the revolution. They exploited to their advantage relationships with those in authority and the uncertainty and light hand of the government in a frontier society.

This study covers six generations of the family from their migration to America until the last family member died in Niagara in 1942. It is hoped that such a long term study will assist in understanding the values and skills transferred from Europe and how they were adapted/developed on the frontiers of America and Upper Canada. Study of a single family permits us to focus on how individual decisions were made in the context of revolution and how the legacy of that loyalism impacted subsequent generations of the family.

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