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Nathaniel Pettit, John Smith & Peter Gordon

Nathaniel Pettit was a prominent citizen of New Jersey at the time the Revolution broke out. He was an established businessman, judge, and member of the provincial legislature until he was found guilty of not paying taxes to the revolutionary congress which resulted in him being fined and losing his judgeship. He was too old for military duty so he raised troops. After settling in Upper Canada he was active in civic and political affairs.

John Smith and his family came from Sussex County, New Jersey where he was a magistrate. Following the War they came to Upper Canada, crossing at the Niagara River and settling at the Forty where he became known as Little John to distinguish himself from another John Smith. In 1789 he moved to Ancaster where he lived until his death at the age of 99.

John Smith’s son Benjamin married Nancy Gordon who was the granddaughter of Nathaniel Pettit which is how those two families tie together. Nancy’s father Peter Gordon was a Loyalist in his own right, also from New Jersey who appears to have been an active recruiter for the Loyalist forces and finally settled in Ancaster.

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