Frédéric Gregory Forsyth de Fronsac.

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the saw and grist-mills. He found himself surrounded by a
singular population — the Puritan Yankee — jealous, suspi-
cious, avaricious, religiously intolerant and hypocritical. In
this inhospitable element, the little Presbyterian colony was
as isolated as though in a desert. Prom the first, Matthew
became the chief man and counsellor of the settlement. He
represented the Presbyterian parish before the provincial
legislature, was deacon of the church, and consented to lect-
ure during the absence of the minister. But a hostile par-
liament followed the few partisans of the Stuarts who had
crossed the sea in company with others. Twelve of the
thirteen colonies had received charters from the Stuart kings,
and although these charters had been modified, the sense of
them recognized the Stuart heir as king. Hence the desire
of the London parliament to revoke them. The result gave
an excuse to the radicals, factious and disloyal to an\' prin-
ciple, in the colonies, to join the enemies of the empire in
1776, to turn the true cause for a Stuart declaration into the
propaganda of a hybrid republic. But until tliis propaganda
was revealed all parties were united to resist parliamentary
encroachment. Matthew, himself, became I'resitlent of the
Chester Connnittee of I'ublic Sately in 1776, but he was
distinctly o])posed to democratic tendencies. lie li\ed long
enough, however, to see the "Republic" establishetl and to
have his royalism confirmed by the treacher\-, insincerit),


vulgarity and cynicism of its government. He died in 1790,
leaving as a legend to his family the phrase : "A royal form
of government conduces to the best interests of a people."
His principal heir was :

William Forsaith (Vicomte de Fronsac), ensign in royal
colonial troops, born in County Fermanagh, Ireland, in 1740.
He was educated in his father's household, for there was no
school or college in the colonies superior in advantages to
that household. While yet very young, he was solicited
to teach those of Chester some of the higher studies. Dur-
ing the Indian War of 1763-65 he entered the royal colonial
militia, became ensign, was wounded, taken prisoner and
remained a captive among the Indians for two )'ears. When
the troubles began between the Metropolis and the Colonies,
he signed the articles of the "Minute Men,'' who were obli-
gated by these articles to, I, Defend the person, Crown and
dignity of the king; to, II, Defend the chartered liberties of
the colonies, and to, III, Obey superior officers with armed
support. So long as the chartered liberties were threatened,
the "Minute Men" were in arms, but in 1778, when the
British Parliament restored all those liberties and conceded
to the demands of the 'colonists, the "Minute Men" dis-
banded. William, as a royalist officer, who had sworn to
support the king before and as a " Minute Man," could not
look with approval on the dishonest position assumed by
the American Congress party after 1778, and he retired
to his farm at Deny, now Deering, N. H. He was
too intelligent not to perceive that the democracy that
was arising would sweep away the refinements and honors
that had been bred in colonial society under the Royal gov-
ernment. With two others he founded the Derry Public
Library. He had married Jane, daughter of James Wilson,
" Surveyor of the High Ways of Chester," who had come
from Ulster, Ireland, and lived to the remarkable age of 118.
James Wilson's wife was Mary, daughter of John Shirley,


cousin of Sir William Shirley, who was Governor of Massa-
chusetts in 1 74 1, and Commander-in-Chief of the British
forces in North America, whose family arms are emblazoned
on the illuminated window at the State House in Boston,
with those of the other royal governors of that colony. It is
stated in Chase's History of Chester that John Shirley was
a relative also of the Countess of Huntington, the patron of
Westley. William died at Deering in 1808. His son was :

Thomas Forsaith, entitled de Fronsac in 1798. "He
was born in Deering, N. H., September i, 1775. At the
age of eleven, in charge of a cousin who was an officer
in the merchant marine, he was sent to France to be educated.
During the French Revolution of 1792, he joined the Royalists,
brigade de Navarre, Marquis de Montmarte commanding, with
the Prussians and Austrians against the French Republicans.
In 1798, he was entitled de Fronsac in the correspondence of
the Emegres. He went to the French West Indies in the
same year on some mission and finally to Savannah, Ga.,
in 1800. He entered into the West India trade after the
sale of Louisiana, by Napoleon I, to the United States in
1803, settling at Portland, Me., where he joined the
Masonic Order and was junior warden of the Ancient Land-
mark Lodge. He was interested with the earliest project of
a railway from Montreal to Portland in 1836, completed in
1854, after his death. He was a fine musician on the violon-
cello, versed in languages, history and literature, and a com-
petent man of affairs. He married, in 1809, Sallie, daughter
of Capt. John Pray of the colonial service, by wife, Mary,
daughter of Col. John Hamilton who had raised a regiment
for the Crown in North Carolina, in 1776, and who was
British Consul at Norfolk, Va., after the war of xyyG-^T,.
The Prays were also of French origin, from the Pra}-e family
of Lau.sanne, whose arms are: " D'azur, au coeur d'or entre
deu.\ etoiles en premier et une croissant en pointe, d' argent."
Thomas died at Portland, in December, 1849, and is buried


Vicomte de Fronsac in the Seigneurial Order of Canada

( 1819-1891)


in the Western Cemetery. He was a man of sterling charac-
ter and resokition, kind to the poor, setting apart each year a
sum of money to purchase provisions for the indigent. His
son was :

Captain Frederic Forsyth, Viscount de Fronsac in
the Seigneurial Order of Canada, etc., born at Portland,
March 22, 1819. After an academic education and military
training he entered his father's exporting office on Ingraham's
Wharf until the discovery of gold in California, in 1849, when
he joined with Captain Thing, of Boston, to raise a military
company of pioneers to march across the plains to the gold-
fields of California. The party of seventy-five, armed as
mounted riflemen, proceeded to St. Louis and from there
after weeks of hardship, danger and hostile adventure in the
Indian country, during which time they lost fifteen men, they
arrived. Not blessed by fortune in the gold mines, he went to
Nicaragua and was agent for the English Navigation Com-
pany at Realejo. He returned to Portland, to learn for the
first time of the death of his father, which occurred soon after
he had started. with the pioneers. He commanded there an
independent company, called the Rifle Corps, which had been
founded in 18 10 by Judge A. A. Atherton, son of an United Em-
pire Loyalist of 1776-83, many of whose members were of Brit-
ish or Canadian origin. This company in i860, on the occasion
of the visit at Portland of H. R. H. the Prince of Wales
(now King Edward VH), was joined to another, the whole
under command of Captain Forsyth, as the guard of honor of
the Prince during his stay in Portland. In 1879, with his
elder son and some gentlemen in Canada and in the States,
they organized the Aryan Order of St. George of the Empire,
which in itself is a reorganization of all the royalist orders
that had existed on the American continent since the time of
the Emperor Charles Quint, in the i6th century, who by
imperial decree had incorporated his estates in America with
the Holy Roman Empire. The principal of these royalist


orders reorganized in the Aryan Order are the descendants
of the Seigneurial Order of Canada and Louisiana ; of the
Order of the Baronets of Nova Scotia ; of the United Empire
Loyahsts, of 1776-83 ; of the Landgraves and Caciques of
Carolina ; of the Lords of the Manours of Maryland ; of the
Lords Patroons of New Netherlands, etc. The membership
of the order is confined to such descendants, none being-
eligible but those of the White, or Aryan race. The purpose
of the order is to secure the recognition of titles which any
of the descendants might be possessed of legitimately, and to
preserve armorials, genealogies and traditions connected with
the various royalist regimes to which the orders belonged
on the American continent. Captain Forsyth, Viscount de
Fronsac, was the first Chancellor of the Order. The first
meeting was held October 28, 1880, in the Maryland His-
torical Society's Hall in Baltimore, where the second Chan-
cellor, Lieut. -Gen. A. P. Stewart, of Mississippi, was elected.
The apparent bearing of the Order was commented on in the
American press from one end of the country to the other.
The New York press declared that it aimed at overthrowing
the republic and establishing an empire. The Philadelphia
press and others said it was a serious menace to republican
institutions. Most of its membership began to be recruited
in the South and the headquarters in 1892 — a year after the
death of Captain P'orsyth — were moved to Savannah, Gix.,
under the Chancellorship of Ur. Joseph Gaston Bulloch of
that city, since which time, owing to such members there not
seeing the anomaly between belonging to an order witli a
royal f(Jundation and professing adherence to the preambles
of a republic at the same time, a division has resulted, and
the royalist members have transferretl their headciuarters to

Captain Forsyth in addition had been a member of the
Odd Fellows and of the New England Society of California
Pioneers. He was a man of high honor, to do his tlut)- as


he conceived it ; he was hospitable, high-minded, chivah'ous ;
patient under difficulties ; serene and unmoved amidst the clash
of misfortune; a "gentleman of the old school " to the last.
He died June ii, 1891, and is buried in Evergreen Cemetery.
His wife, who survived him until 1898, was Harriette Marie,
daughter of Major-General Joseph Scott Jewett, of Scar-
borough, Me. (see p. 88). By her he had two sons, Frederic
Gregory and Thomas Scott (see p. 80). He changed the
spelling of the name Forsaith to the one-time form of Forsyth.
His elder son :

Frederic Gregory Forsyth de Froxsac, vicomte in the
Seigneurial Order of Canada, was born in Montreal, but li\-ed
from infancy in the United States. The close contact in
which he was brought to the republic ; the picture of its un-
ethical c\nicism and misrule; of the middle classes destroyed
in quarrels between those who, b)- dishonesty and intrigue
with politicians, have acquired millions as monopolists on the
one hand, and the ravenous, ignorant and self-seeking labor-
organizations on the other ; of universal equality relieved only
by the money value of each individual to the extinction of
every idea of honor, tradition and merit ; no orderly subordi-
nation ; no discipline ; no monarchical idea of fealty that
purifies the soul and makes it leal by its teaching of self-
abnegation ; — from this contact, as an author, he could speak
with experience. His first poem was published at the age of
13. In French and English periodicals he contributed to the
history of England, France, Canada, United States, and also to
general historical reviews of other lands. He is quoted in the
Carmichael Edition of Taswell-Langmead's " Constitutional
History of England " as one of the most reliable of the better
class of American historians. He is considered an authority
on heraldry. In 1893 he was attached for military course to
the school of the Royal Canadian Infantry at Fredericton,
N. B. In 1895, anticipating the need of the loyalists and
seigneurs in Canada, he founded the United Empire Loyalist


Association at Montreal and was its first president, being suc-
ceeded the same year by Sir William Johnson, Baronet of
Chambly, and becoming himself Marechal de Blason of the
Seigneurial Order of Canada — the Baron de Longueuil being
the chancellor — both of these deriving from the precedent of
the Aryan Order of St. George of the Empire of 1879-80.
Spreading rapidly, the United Empire Loyalist Association,
as he founded it, established headquarters at Montreal, Toronto
(1896), and Halifax (1897); a previous branch succeeding'the
Aryan Order of 1879-80 had been established in 1883 at
St. John, N. B. The efforts of the loyalists effaced the an-
nexation propaganda that Yankee intrigue was fostering in
Canada and did more to exalt the royalist influence and im-
perial connection than all the commercial schemes, preferential
trade formulae and imperial league teachings combined, and
which appeared only after the loyalists had led the way — for
they had with them that which Burke said (tradition) " Though
lighter than air holds stronger than iron," what Beaconsfield
declared (sentiment) " Is sole foundation of national greatness."
His last project of [903 of introducing into Canada a colony
of French royalist families, whose sons' future, denied by the
French Republic, would cause them to be glad to come if
given encouragement, was favored by the royalist press of
Canada, English and French, and may bring fruit. The
Seigneurial Order, of which he is the Herald-Marshal, was
established by King Louis XIV in Canada in 1663 : its rights,
titles and precedence were recognized by King (icorge of
England in the " CajMtulations of Montreal " of 1760, and to
the Seigneurs who defended Quebec against the American
invasion of 1775 additional recognition had been given in the
act which accorded precedence "To those and their cliildren
who joined the royal standard in the late war (1775-83),"
P'ounded on these recognitions and obligations from the i""rench
and l^rilisli crowns, he has advanced the (lignit\- of the
Seigneui'ial ( )r(ler to its present position.


X'icomte de Fronsac in Seigneurial Order of Canada


Capt. Alexander Forsyth was born at Failzerton Manor,
Ayrshire, 1689; son of Walter Forsyth, provost of the
College and Subdeaneries of Glasgow (see p. 19), by wife, his
cousin, Margaret, daughter of Capt. James Forsaith * of the
French service, who married Marguerite, daughter of the Vis-
count and Governor Nicolas Denysde Fronsac, of Acadia, etc.
Like his brother James he was attached to the cause of
legitimate monarchy in the person of the Stuart Kings, and
favored the stand taken by Lord Marr in 171 5. On the un-
fortunate issue of that cause, he came to Boston, where, on
December 12, 171 7, he married Miss Elizabeth Evans, of
Boston, and entered into the life of the New World. With
the wealth which he had inherited and brought with him he
became interested in the foreign commerce of the town, and
by his education, refinement of person and energy, he was
recognized speedily as one of the foremost among the resident
gentry. In the course of his residence he filled many and
important occasions. His military experience caused him to
be chosen as captain in the Colonial regiment. Li 1733 he
was on the committee of freeholders to chose seven selectmen.
Before this, in 1724, he was a commissioner of the colony to
draw up a treaty with the Western Indians of New England.
In 1735 and for many years after he was selectman of Boston,
and his autograph is printed in the second volume of the
Memorial History of Boston. In 1742 he was one of the mili-
tary commission to plan the fortifications about Boston.
Throughout these years, as selectmen, he was on the com-
mittee of visitation of the public institutions in company with
the governor and His Majesty's justices. He was a patron of

* The ai in French is pronounced like y in Scottish or English ; Forsaith-Forsyth.


art and literature and one of the subscribers to the fund for
the publication of Prince's " Chronology.'"

In the meantime his first wife, Elizabeth, died July 28, 1726,
aged 30, leaving three small children, one of whom, John,
died September 8, 1727, aged 14 months; both buried in
tomb 65, Copp's Hill Cemetery, Boston. About 1730 he
married again for second wife, Miss Deborah Briggs, of
Boston, and by her had a son John. At the close of the
Colonial War in 1763 he returned to Ayrshire, Scotland,
being accompanied by his wife and son John, where he died
"full of years and honors," and in the consciousness of having
done his duty with integrity and zeal in a long and

James Bennett Forsyth was born in Brookline, a suburb
of Boston, Mass., February 2, 1850. His parents moved to
the Roxbury District of Boston while he was very young.
On account of the unsatisfactory condition of his health, he
was frequently kept out of school for long periods, and a
great deal of the time he passed in the office and factories of
the Boston Belting Company, with which his father was con-
nected, and which were, and. still are, located in the Ro.xbury
District of Boston. He became greatly interested in the
machinery and manufacture of vulcanized rubber. After his
health was restored, he returned again to sch()t)l. Later on,
by ad\'ice of j)hvsicians, he was taken awa)' entirely from the
public school, as the state of his health would not permit of
the confinement of study in a schoolroom, and continued his
education under private instruction.

He continued to interest himself in the manufacture of
vulcanized rubber, and, later on, while \ ct \er\ \-oung, he
became connected with the factories of the Company where,
in process of time, he filled all the important positions at the
factories, such as clerk, assistant su])erinten(lent. superin-
tendent, niauulacturing agent, and director, and lor nearly





twenty years (1884-1903) he has filled the position of director
and general manager of the entire business of the Company.
It has been very largely through his efforts that the Com-
pany has prospered so wonderfully.

He has made many important and useful inventions, all
connected with the machinery and manufactures of the Com-
pany, and has taken out more than fifty patents on machinery
and manufacturing processes. A few of his inventions are :
I, machinery for the manufacture of that kind of hose which
is made of duck, or canvas, coated with rubber, and which is
used very extensively in all civilized countries ; 2, for the art
of lining textile tubes with rubber so as to fit them for use
as hose for conducting water, air, etc. Hose of this kind is
in general use in fire-departments throughout the civilized
world. It is used also extensively in railway stations and
repair- shops, public buildings, in mills, factories, on ship-board,
and wherever a strong, light-weight and durable hose is re-
quired ; 3, rubber-covered rollers, now considered indispen-
sable for squeezing, sizing, and calendaring purposes in cotton,
woolen, paper, and wool-scouring mills, print and dye works,
bleacheries, tanneries, etc. ; 4, improved methods in the manu-
facture of rubber, gutta percha, and balata machine belting,
used for transmitting power, coal, grain and ore conveyors,

His knowledge of the manufacture of mechanical rubber
goods, general management of all branches of the business,
and his inventions, have added greatly to the great success,
prosperity, and unrivalled reputation of the Company.

His father was the late William Forsyth, referred to in the
genealogy (p. 20). His mother's family, the Bennetts, of
which her father, Hamilton Bennett, was a member, was
known in England from the time of the Norman Conquest in
1066. The title of the family chief is Earl of Tankarville,
one of whom, the Earl of Arlington, in 1663, was father-in
law of the Duke of Grafton, natural son of King Charles II


Hamilton Bennett, Esq., father of Mrs. William Forsyth,
was descended also from the Hamiltons of Boreland, in Ayr-
shire, Scotland, who count as their ancestor that David
Hamilton, Lord of Cadzow, who is ancestor also of the Duke
of Hamilton, the premier peer of Scotland.

Thomas Scott Forsyth, son of Captain Frederic, Vis-
count de Fronsac, by Harriette M., daughter of Gen. ']. S.
Jewett, educated in academic course, became devoted to music
vocal and instrumental, to the dramatic art, elocution and
literature. He was a pupil of Don Giovanni. In the exer-
cise of his profession he became quite noted as a journalistic
letter writer and for storiettes. He drilled pupils and pro-
duced several dramatic sketches of his own composition in
Boston, New York and Philadelphia. He has been organist
of churches in those cities and made the reputation, in 1902-
1903, of the Second Reformed Presbyterian Church of Phil-
adelphia for Sunday musical programmes. As a choir-master,
and student of the historic progression of music, he has few
equals among the younger generation of New \\\)rld musi-
cians. He is an Odd P"ellow and on the Council of the
Seigneurial Order of Canada, as well as on that of the United
Empire Loyalists.

Col. Joseph Bell Forsyth, of Quebec. He was son of
James Bell F"orsyth (see p. 11), by wife, l^^anny, daughter of
the Hon. Matthew Bell, who raised, at his own exiK-nse, a
squadron of cavalry at Quebec, in 1812, whohad come from
Scotland bringing over the first pack of hunting hounds ever
seen at Three Rivers, Canada, and induced the king to gi\e a
cuj), to be called the " Kiuj^'-'s C///>," to be lun tore\ei\ \ ear on
the Three Rivers Course for the ini])ro\enient ot horses in
Canada. This course is held now at Quebec and Montreal, alter-
nately. The Hon. Mr. Bell was also a prominent member ol the



government and the heir of the Earldom of Cromarty in Scot-
land, deriving in direct line from that earl who was so gallant a
supporter of the cause of the Stuarts. As his eldest child,
Fanny, married the father of Colonel Forsyth, it left Colonel
Forsyth in direct heirship to this title, which had been borne by
the noble family of Mackenzie. Colonel Forsyth has been for
many years Collector of Customs for the Port of Quebec.
He was the one who promoted the formation of the school
for cavalry instruction at Quebec and was its first comman-
dant. He succeeded to the command of the Quebec Cavalry
Regiment (founded by his grandfather, the Hon. Matthew
Bell), which was named, by permission of Queen Victoria,
" The Queen's Canadian Hussars." He was one of the pro-
moters of the Garrison Club of Quebec and its first presi-
dent. He wears medals commemorative of the Fenian raids
and for long service. For years he has been prominent in
Church of England work and a warden of the church. He
married Elizabeth M., daughter of the late T. B. Anderson,
president of the Bank of Montreal, and granddaughter of the
Hon. John Richardson, of the firm of Forsyth and Richard-
son, of Montreal, who were agents for the North West Fur
Company, the early rivals of the Hudson Bay Fur Company.

Rev. Alexander John Forsyth, LL.D., was born January
I, 1769, at Belhelvie, near Aberdeen, where his father, the Rev.
James Forsyth, was minister and whom he succeeded in
pastoral charge in 1791. He was educated at King's College,
Aberdeen, where he took the degree of M.A. He was very
greatly interested in chemical experiments, especially with
fulminating powders and explosive compounds. He invented
the percussion lock for musketry and the fulminate to accom-
pany it. By this invention, the use of the flint-lock was done
away with and the entire method of modern warfare relating to
musketry was changed. The Emperor Napoleon, appreciating


the serious consequences of this invention, offered him the
title of Count of the Empire, a position at his court and
^40,000 ($200,000) for him to come to France and give his
invention to the French government. But Mr. Forsyth, with
a blindness to his own personal advancement and to the glory
of his own achievements, offered his invention freely to the
British government. Lord Brougliam, who was in the minis-
try at that time, and a distant relative, opened for him a room
in the Tower of London for the conduction of his experi-
ments in the year 1805. Ii'^ the next year, a change of
ministry occurred. Lord Brougham was out, and the new min-
istry ordered Mr. Forsyth to leave the tower and take his
"rubbish" with him. Such was the term applied by the
ignorant parasites of the new government who had been fois-

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Online LibraryFrédéric Gregory Forsyth de FronsacMemorial of the family of Forsyth de Fronsac → online text (page 5 of 6)