Monday, 7 May 2012

Corey


Although his headstone says Long Island, it seems Morris Corey was actually from Cortlandt Manor, which is in Westchester County. He did leave for Canada from Long Island and maybe that is where his son, who erected this headstone, had the idea of his birthplace. Morris' father, Griffin Corey, was a prosperous farmer with considerable personal property. But with his loyalty to the British side and with two of Morris' brothers in the New York Volunteers, a loyalist regiment, the family's downfall was almost inevitable. Westchester County saw the worst of the fighting and suffering being sandwiched between the two headquarters of the British and American sides. Griffin was imprisoned for several months until he took an oath of allegiance in order to be released. He apparently suffered greatly from the imprisonment and in 1778 he fled and took refuge with the British on Long Island. The Americans stripped the family of all their holdings and the Corey family were left destitute.  With the family reunited in Long Island, Griffin (and some of the children) had become ill and he died in 1780, which further exacerbated the situation for his family.  With the help of British officers, by 1783 Sarah Corey and her children were evacuated and granted land in New Brunswick. Morris would have been around 7 or 8 years of age. In spite of all her hardships, Sarah managed to accumulate enough to leave each of her surviving children something in her will. Morris got the family farm in Gagetown. He had married Sarah, (known as Sally, born in 1785)  in 1804 and they had 12 children, the first eight being born in Gagetown. By 1822 the family had moved to Saltfleet, though why or how the family made the long trek from New Brunswick to Ontario is a mystery.


Our dear parents have gone
to mansions beyond yonder sky
to gaze on the bountiful throne
of him who is seated on high

8 comments:

Paul in Powell River said...

Those Loyalists certainly had some tough choices to make. Nice writeup to go with your picture.

VioletSky said...

Corey doesn't seem a common name in this area and it is an odd move for him to have made.
There were, however, far too many Sarah's in the 19th C!

Gemma Wiseman said...

Incredible life story! To be imprisoned till he took a particular side is just beyond belief! Perhaps the family could be suspected as spies! Great post!

Deb said...

Lovely old gravestone, enjoyed the story too.

Herding Cats said...

What an interesting stone and story behind it. I love the verse at the bottom. Fantastic post.

CaT said...

wow, how did you find that all out!
i like the verse too...

hamilton said...

amazingly, all I did was google his name... and everything I needed came up! though I did have to do a little digging, but then got his father and it all seemed too easy!

Julie Storry said...

Yes, sometimes a little googling goes a long way ... and leads onto way ...

I thoroughly enjoyed this little story, although agree about the plethora of Sarahs! I am going to have to get me a map of Canada and the northern parts of the USA so that I can follow some of the Canadian contributions to this meme. What I am understanding, though, is that Canadian society is very similar to Australian society. Which is good.