A Loyalist Widow’s Plea to England

Loyalist Widow & Mother Desperately Appeals to England for Relief.

portrait of woman

Mary McAlpin and her husband Major Daniel McAlpin purchased a 600-acre estate on the west side of Saratoga Lake in 1773. Two years later, local militia asked McAlpin to train their soldiers. He refused to become involved, was jailed multiple times in Albany, and eventually escaped and joined Burgoyne’s army at Fort Edward.

While her husband was in jail, Mary McAlpin stayed at home with her three children. The McAlpin home was placed under guard by local Patriots, who felt free to use the home as their own. In May of 1777, the Albany Committee of Safety ordered the McAlpin family from their home. They were brought first to Stillwater and then to Albany. Penniless and without proper clothing, the family relied on friends to provide food and shelter.

After the War for Independence, Mary McAlpin applied for reparations from the British government for their losses. Her husband had died in Canada during the war and she was now a widow with children to support. Her claim included 900 acres on Saratoga Lake. The property was one among 13 belonging to Loyalist families in what is now Saratoga County that had been seized by the State of New York after the war.