A Connecticut Yankee in the King’s Rangers

Presented by Pamela Vittorio

60-Minute Presentation (Intermediate to Advanced)

Though genealogists rely most heavily on original documents to prove family relationships or identities, using artifacts, though unusual, may help untangle a same-name mystery. Between 1780 and 1783, Oliver Graham’s name appeared on both Connecticut and Loyalist militia rosters. Were there two men named Oliver Graham?: One who had volunteered in Connecticut, fought with Seth Warner’s regiment in Vermont, and was captured during the Burning of the Valley, and the other, a private with the King’s Rangers who received many acres of Crown Land after the Treaty of Paris was signed? A detailed paper trail from research in Canadian archives and two U.S. states, combined with a nineteenth century watercolor painting and a Colonial powder horn, help confirm one man’s identity.