Claims, American Loyalists : Series I (AO 12) : 1776-1831.
|Call Number:||HIL-MICL FC LPR .G7A9C5L6|
|Creator:||Great Britain. Audit Office.|
|Description:||30 microfilm textual records (146 volumes) ; 35 mm|
From 1776, the British Treasury granted relief in the form of allowances to impoverished American Loyalists of the American Revolution who had sought refuge in Great Britain. In 1782, Treasury assigned its duties to the Loyalist Relief Commission, then in 1783, Treasury assigned its duties to the Commission Appointed to Enquire into the Losses of American Loyalists. Commissioners received claims of losses of property and incomes, as well as requests by impoverished Loyalists for relief in the form of an allowance. In England initially; but from 1785-90 the Commissioners travelled to the North American colonies where they received Loyalists' claims and heard evidence in support of these claims. To compensate Loyalists from Eastern Florida, Britain appointed the Florida Claims Commission in 1776; one book of evidence is included with Audit Office 12. Britain also added the responsibilities to the Loyalist Claims Commission to deal with merchants who had lost the opportunity to recoup debt money due from the Cherokee and Creek natives as a result of the sale of their lands in Georgia. This money from the sale of lands was to go towards their debts to the merchants. Microfilm edition published as: Great Britain. Commission Appointed to Enquire into the Losses of American Loyalists, 1783-1789. American Loyalist Claims, series 1, 1776-1831.
Audit Office 12 contains the first series (Series I) of papers relating to claims for relief, compensation, or other payments submitted by persons who had suffered losses in the American Revolution because of their loyalty to the British crown. These involve American Loyalists but also include claims by merchants for debts due them because of an agreement between the crown and the Cherokee and Creek natives in Georgia. Examples of the types of documents and content include: evidence books, decision books, examinations and reports of the army and navy concerning losses sustained through providing supplies; reports pertaining to each of the colonies; minute books and reports of the commissioners; correspondence; letter book of commissioner John Pugh; collection of intelligence used for reference of the commissioners; ledger listing debts owed Loyalists; and cases not prosecuted. The material contains much information about the politics of the revolution, the conduct of the war, and the experiences of individual Loyalists. Topics for research not already mentioned include women and family, war, emigration, finances, military, property, law and justice, and black history. Arrangement and Content Details: Volumes 1-56, "Evidence," are entry books which contain the evidence of witnesses at each hearing with a copy of the claimants' memorial and schedule of losses. The volumes are arranged alphabetically by state and within the volumes by the dates of the hearings. Each volume contains an index to the claims in that volume. Volumes 57-70 "Decisions," are books which give a short summary of the Commissioners' findings on each claim. Each volume contains an index. Again the arrangement is by colony and by date. Volumes 71-77, "Examinations and Reports generated by the Army and Navy Claims Commission. These concern the losses sustained through providing supplies to the British Army and Navy during the war. There is an index at the beginning of the volumes; volume 77 is an index to the section. Volumes 78-92, Reports on property and claims for Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and North and South Carolina. Volumes 93-146, "Various," contains a heterogeneous mix of documents which includes material relating to the previous volumes. There are indexes for many of the volumes; it is organised as follows:
|Originals:||The original documents are held by The National Archives in London.|
|Archival Ref. No.:||TNA (formerly PRO) AO 12 and LAC MG 14, AO 12.|
Microfilm shelf list providing the reel numbers for each volume is available in The Loyalist Collection red binders and online; see Electronic Finding Aid section. Guide to the contents, broken down by volume:
|Electronic Finding Aid Record:||
GB A012 Claims, American Loyalists Series I.pdf
Related material: Great Britain. AO 13. Claims, American Loyalists: Series II