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- Absalom Smith was born in Grimsby, Lincoln County, Upper Canada. His father was John Cooper Smith, his mother was Hannah Wilcox. John was a cooper by trade and had emigrated from Sussex, New Jersey in 1787 to the "Forty" in Upper Canada. Hannah was born and raised in the same Grimsby area.
In 1813-1814, Absalom was a private in the 2nd Regiment of York Militia. He's mentioned several times in the document linked here, one instance showing that he was part of a company of men commanded by Serjeant Duncan McQueen working the roads on the Dundas Street from October 25th to November 14th, 1813. He would have been about 25 years old at this time.
Noted war historian Fred Blair adds in the Comments: I think that it is important to note Absalom's service in July, 1814. Around the 20th he was probably involved in a minor engagement with the Americans as four of the men in his company were taken prisoner by the Americans.
On the 25th he stood on the right flank of the British line at the beginning of the Battle of Lundy's Lane.
Early in the battle the militia were order to advance on the left flank of the American line and fire upon them. There was some concern about the supply of British munitions and the militia were ordered to surrender theirs to the regular infantry. The militia men then assisted wounded men to the hospital and helped bury the dead after sunrise. (Where Right and Glory Lead! The Battle of Lundy’s Lane, 1814 by Donald E. Graves, Robin Brass Studio, Toronto, 2003).
Absalom Smith was one of the area residents who met in 1817 to describe Trafalgar Township to the government statistician. A link to the newspaper article describing this event and the answers of the men to the questions of the statistician is provided in this record.
Absalom and his wife, Polly, aided William Lyon Mackenzie during his flight after the December 1837 rebellion.
The Absalom Smith farm was located east of Palermo, Lot 27, Concession 1, North (NDS). The date when the farm was sold out of the family is uncertain. In 2018 terms, the location is on the north-west corner of the intersection of Hospital Gate and Dundas St. West, just west of the new new hospital, Lot 27, Con. 1 NDS.
- Anna Mary Beamer, called Polly, and Absalom married on October 17, 1809 in Grimsby Township, Lincoln County. They had 11 children, all born in Palermo, Trafalgar Township, Halton County.
1. Anna Catherine b. October 1, 1810.
2. Mary Elizabeth b. May 12, 1812.
3. Hannah Priscilla b. January 14, 1814.
4. Elsie Aquilla b. September 9, 1815.
5. Lydia Howell b. March 15, 1817.
6. Eli Beamer b. January 4, 1819.
7. Sarah Lavinah b. February 8, 1821.
8. John William b. September 22, 1823.
9. Hulda Ann b. December 28, 1824.
10. Margaret Mahala b. June 12, 1827.
11. Absalom Harvey b. October 30, 1829.
Anna Catherine Smith, oldest daughter of Absalom Smith and Anna Mary Beamer, married Thomas E. Pickett, son of Reverend Daniel Pickett and Elizabeth Franz Ingersoll, sister of Laura Secord. They lived in Lowville, the Reverend Daniel Pickett and family having settled there in 1820.
- Absalom Smith
- Personal Name(s):
- Absalom Smith, b. February 3, 1788, d. February 5, 1861, aged 73.
Anna Mary (Beamer) Smith, b. January 13, 1785 d. August 31, 1870. "Polly", as she was called, was 85 years old when she died, but her headstone in the Palermo Cemetery says she was 86. Her parents were John Beamer, Jr. and Anna Young. She was born in Bethlehem Township, Hunterdon County, New Jersey, U.S.A.
- Local identifier:
- Trafalgar Township Historical Society
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- Absalom Smith
Trafalgar Township Historical Society
Trafalgar Township Historical Society Sponsor: Jeff Knoll, Local & Regional Councillor for Oakville Ward 5 – Town of Oakville/Regional Municipality of Halton