Loyalist (American Revolution)
Loyalists were American colonists who remained loyal to the British Crown during the American Revolutionary War. At the time they were often called Tories, Royalists, or King's Men; Patriots called them "persons inimical to the liberties of America". They were opposed by the Patriots, those who supported the revolution. Prominent Loyalists repeatedly assured the British government that many thousands of loyalists would spring to arms and fight for the crown. The British government acted in expectation of that, especially in the southern campaigns in 1780-81. In practice, the number of loyalists in military service was far lower than expected. Across the new United States Patriots watched suspects very closely, and would not tolerate any organized Loyalist opposition. Many outspoken or militarily active loyalists were forced to flee, especially to their stronghold of New York City.
When their cause was defeated, about 15% of the Loyalists (65,000–70,000 people) fled to other parts of the British Empire, to Britain itself, or to what is now Canada (British North America). The southern colonists moved mostly to Florida, which had remained loyal to the Crown, and to British Caribbean possessions, often bringing along their slaves. Northern Loyalists largely migrated to Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. They called themselves United Empire Loyalists. Most were compensated with Canadian land or British cash distributed through formal claims procedures. Exiled Loyalists received £3 million or about 37% of their losses from the British government. Loyalists who stayed in the U.S. were generally able to retain their property and become American citizens.
Historians have estimated that between 15 and 20 percent of the 2.0 million whites in the colonies in 1775 were Loyalists, or about 300-400,000 men, women and children. Numerous black Americans were also Loyalists and some moved to the Province of Nova Scotia, British Canada, after the war.
- 1 Background
- 2 Motivations for Loyalism
- 3 Loyalism and military operations
- 4 Emigration from the United States
- 5 Return of some expatriates
- 6 Impact of the departure of Loyalist leaders
- 7 Loyalists in art
- 8 Loyalists in literature
- 9 Notable Loyalists
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 Further reading
- 13 External links
- 14 External links
The American Revolution was a civil war based on who would rule in the Thirteen Colonies. Families were often divided as war forced colonists to choose sides in a conflict that remained for many years uncertain. Colonists, especially recent arrivals, often felt themselves to be both American and British, subjects of the King, still owing a loyalty to the mother country. Many, like Maryland lawyer Daniel Dulaney, opposed taxation without representation, but would not break their oath to the King or take up arms against him. In one of his many pamphlets, Dulaney wrote: "There may be a time when redress may not be obtained. Till then, I shall recommend a legal, orderly, and prudent resentment". Most hoped for a peaceful reconciliation, and were forced by the Patriots who took control nearly everywhere in 1775-76 to choose sides.
Likely the earliest formal meeting, and use of the term "Loyalist" and the source of the United Empire Loyalist ("UEL") acronym, took place in Boston on October 28, 1775. At the meeting, held at the suggestion of General Thomas Gage, these Loyalists formed a society called "The Loyalist Associators Desiring the Unity of the Empire".
Motivations for Loyalism
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Yale historian Leonard Woods Larabee has identified eight characteristics of the Loyalists that made them essentially conservative and loyal to the king and Britain:
- They were older, better established, and resisted radical change.
- They felt that rebellion against the Crown—the legitimate government—was morally wrong.
- They were alienated when the Patriots resorted to violence, such as burning houses and tarring and feathering.
- They wanted to take a middle-of-the road position and were angry when forced by the Patriots to declare their opposition.
- They had a long-standing sentimental attachment to Britain (often with business and family links).
- They were procrastinators who realized that independence was bound to come someday, but wanted to postpone the moment.
- They were cautious and afraid that chaos and mob rule would result.
- Some were pessimists who lacked the confidence in the future displayed by the Patriots. Others recalled the dreadful experiences of many Jacobite rebels after the failure of the last Jacobite rebellion as recently as 1745 who often lost their lands when the Hanoverian government won.
Other motivations of the Loyalists were:
- They felt a need for order and believed that Parliament was the legitimate authority.
- In New York, powerful families had assembled colony-wide coalitions of supporters, Men long associated with the DeLancey faction went along when its leadership decided to support the crown.
- They felt themselves to be weak or threatened within American society and in need of an outside defender such as the British Crown and Parliament.
- They had been promised freedom from slavery by the British.
- They felt that being a part of the British Empire was crucial in terms of commerce and their business operations.
Loyalism and military operations
In the opening months of the Revolutionary War, the Patriots laid siege to Boston, where most of the British forces were stationed. Elsewhere there were few British troops and the Patriots seized control of all levels of government, as well as supplies of arms and gunpowder. These actions were not without resistance. Especially in New York, New Jersey, and parts of North and South Carolina, there was considerable ambivalence about the Patriot cause. Vocal Loyalists, often with the encouragement and assistance of royal governors, recruited people to their side. In the South Carolina backcountry Loyalist recruitment oustripped that of Patriots. A brief siege at Ninety Six in the fall of 1775 was followed by a rapid rise in Patriot recruiting and a Snow Campaign involving thousands of partisan militia resulted in the arrest or flight of most of the backcountry Loyalist leadership. North Carolina backcountry Scots and former Regulators joined forces in early 1776, but were broken as a force at the Battle of Moore's Creek Bridge.
By July 4, 1776 the Patriots had gained control of virtually all territory in the 13 colonies, and expelled all royal officials. No one who openly proclaimed their loyalty to the Crown was allowed to remain, so for the moment, Loyalists fled or kept quiet. Some of those who remained later gave aid to invading British armies or joined uniformed Loyalist regiments.
The British were forced out of Boston by March 17, 1776; they regrouped at Halifax and attacked New York in August, handing a convincing defeat to George Washington's army at Long Island and capturing New York City and its vicinity. The British forces would occupy the area around the mouth of the Hudson River until 1783. British forces would also seize control of other cities, including Philadelphia (1777), Savannah (1778–83) and Charleston (1780–82), as well as various slices of countryside. But 90% of the colonial population lived outside the cities, with the effective result being that the Congress controlled 80–90% of the population. The British removed their governors from colonies where the Patriots were in control, but Loyalist civilian government was re-established in coastal Georgia from 1779 to 1782, despite presence of Patriot forces in the northern part of Georgia. Essentially, the British were only able to maintain power in areas where they had a strong military presence.
Numbers of Loyalists
Historian Robert Calhoon wrote in 2000, concerning the proportion of Loyalists to Patriots in the Thirteen Colonies:
Historians' best estimates put the proportion of adult white male loyalists somewhere between 15 and 20 percent. Approximately half the colonists of European ancestry tried to avoid involvement in the struggle—some of them deliberate pacifists, others recent immigrants, and many more simple apolitical folk. The patriots received active support from perhaps 40 to 45 percent of the white populace, and at most no more than a bare majority.
Before Calhoon's work, estimates of the Loyalist share of the population were somewhat higher, at about one-third, but these estimates are now seen as too high by most scholars. Adams did indeed estimate in another letter of that year that in the American Revolution, the Patriots had to struggle against approximately one-third of the population, while they themselves constituted about two-thirds of it; he did not mention neutrals. In 1968 historian Paul H. Smith estimated there were about 500,000 Loyalists, or 16% of the white population.
Historian Robert Middlekauff summarized scholarly research on the nature of Loyalist support as follows:
The largest number of loyalists were found in the middle colonies: many tenant farmers of New York supported the king, for example, as did many of the Dutch in the colony and in New Jersey. The Germans in Pennsylvania tried to stay out of the Revolution, just as many Quakers did, and when that failed, clung to the familiar connection rather than embrace the new. Highland Scots in the Carolinas, a fair number of Anglican clergy and their parishioners in Connecticut and New York, a few Presbyterians in the southern colonies, and a large number of the Iroquois Indians stayed loyal to the king.
New York City and Long Island were the British military and political base of operations in North America from 1776 to 1783 and had a large concentration of Loyalists, many of whom were refugees from other states.
According to Calhoon, Loyalists tended to be older and wealthier, but there were also many Loyalists of humble means. Many active Church of England members became Loyalists. Some recent arrivals from Britain, especially those from Scotland, had a high Loyalist proportion. Loyalists in the southern colonies were suppressed by the local Patriots, who controlled local and state government. Many people—including former Regulators in North Carolina — refused to join the rebellion, as they had earlier protested against corruption by local authorities who later became Revolutionary leaders. The oppression by the local Whigs during the Regulation led to many of the residents of backcountry North Carolina sitting out the Revolution or siding with the Loyalists.
In areas under Patriot control, Loyalists were subject to confiscation of property, and outspoken supporters of the king were threatened with public humiliation such as tarring and feathering, or physical attack. It is not known how many Loyalist civilians were harassed by the Patriots, but the treatment was a warning to other Loyalists not to take up arms. In September 1775, William Drayton and Loyalist leader Colonel Thomas Fletchall signed a treaty of neutrality in the interior community of Ninety Six, South Carolina. For actively aiding the British army when it occupied Philadelphia, two residents of the city were tried for treason, convicted, and executed by returning Patriot forces.
Slavery and Black Loyalists
As a result of the looming crisis in 1775 the Royal Governor of Virginia, Lord Dunmore, issued a proclamation that promised freedom to servants and slaves who were able to bear arms and join his Loyalist Ethiopian Regiment. Many of the slaves in the South joined the Loyalists with intentions of gaining freedom and escaping the South. About 800 did so; some helped rout the Virginia militia at the Battle of Kemp's Landing and fought in the Battle of Great Bridge on the Elizabeth River, wearing the motto "Liberty to Slaves", but this time they were defeated. The remains of their regiment were then involved in the evacuation of Norfolk, after which they served in the Chesapeake area. Eventually the camp that they had set up there suffered an outbreak of smallpox and other diseases. This took a heavy toll, putting many of them out of action for some time. There was a slave by the name of Boston King who joined the Loyalists and wound up catching smallpox. Boston King and other soldiers who were sick were relocated to a different part of the camp so that they did not contaminate the healthy soldiers. The survivors joined other British units and continued to serve throughout the war. Black colonials were often the first to come forward to volunteer and a total of 12,000 African Americans served with the British from 1775 to 1783. This factor had the effect of forcing the rebels to also offer freedom to those who would serve in the Continental Army; however, such promises were often reneged upon by both sides.
African Americans who gained their freedom by fighting for the British became known as Black Loyalists. The British honored the pledge of freedom in New York through the efforts of General Guy Carleton who recorded the names of African Americans who had supported the British in a document called the Book of Negroes which granted freedom to slaves who had escaped and assisted the British. About 4,000 Black Loyalists went to the British colonies of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, where the British promised them land. They founded communities across the two provinces, many of which still exist today. Over 2,500 settled in Birchtown, Nova Scotia, instantly making it the largest free black community in North America. However, the inferior grants of land they were given and the prejudices of white Loyalists in nearby Shelburne who regularly harassed the settlement in events such as the Shelburne Riots in 1784, made life very difficult for the community. In 1791 Britain's Sierra Leone Company offered to transport dissatisfied black Loyalists to the British colony of Sierra Leone in Africa, with the promise of better land and more equality. About 1,200 left Nova Scotia for Sierra Leone, where they named the capital Freetown. After 1787 they became Sierra Leone's ruling elite. About 400 to 1,000 free blacks who joined the British side in the Revolution went to London and joined the free black community of about 10,000 there.
Women also served as Loyalist in the American Revolution. While men were out fighting for the crown, women served at home protecting their land and their property. The main punishment for Loyalist families was the expropriation of property. At the end of the war, many men loyalist left America for the shelter of England, leaving their wives and daughters to protect their land. Authorities did not what know what do with the women who were left behind because legally, married women were protected under "feme covert", covered women. This basically meant that they had no political identity and their rights were absorbed by their husbands. This created an awkward dilemma for the confiscation committees. When they confiscated the land of women left behind they were punishing a women for her husbands actions that they often were not responsible for. One of the many women who was punished in this way was Grace Growden Galloway. Grace Galloway is a valuable source to historians because she recorded what she was going through in her diary. She provides a unique perspective that is often forgotten. Galloway's property was seized by the Rebels and she spend the rest of her life fighting to regain it. It was not placed back in the possession of her heirs until 1783, after her death and her husband's.
Loyalism in Canada
Rebel agents were active in Quebec (which was then frequently called "Canada", the name of the earlier French province) in the months leading to the outbreak of active hostilities. John Brown, an agent of the Boston Committee of Correspondence, worked with Canadian merchant Thomas Walker and other rebel sympathisers during the winter of 1774–1775 to convince inhabitants to support the actions of the First Continental Congress. However, many of Quebec's inhabitants remained neutral, resisting service to either the British or the Americans.
Although some Canadians took up arms in support of the rebellion, the majority remained loyal to the King. French Canadians had been satisfied by the British government's Quebec Act of 1774, which offered religious and linguistic toleration; in general, they did not sympathize with a rebellion that they saw as being led by Protestants from New England, who were their commercial rivals and hereditary enemies. Most of the English-speaking settlers had arrived following the British conquest of Canada in 1759–1760, and unlikely to support separation from Britain. The older British colonies, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, which at the time included present-day New Brunswick, also remained loyal to the crown and contributed military forces in support of the Crown.
In late 1775 the Continental Army sent a force into Quebec, led by General Richard Montgomery and Colonel Benedict Arnold, with the goal of convincing the residents of Quebec to join the Revolution. Although only a minority of Canadians openly expressed loyalty to King George, about 1,500 militia fought for the King in the Siege of Fort St. Jean. In the region south of Montreal that was occupied by the Continentals, some inhabitants supported the rebellion and raised two regiments to join the Patriot forces.
In Nova Scotia, there were many Yankee settlers originally from New England, and they generally supported the principles of the revolution. This element was declining in relative numbers and influence due to an influx of recent immigration from the British isles, and they remained neutral during the war, and the influx was greatest in Halifax. Britain in any case built up powerful forces at the naval base of Halifax after the failure of Jonathan Eddy to capture Fort Cumberland in 1776. Although the Continentals captured Montreal in November 1775, they were turned back a month later at Quebec City by a combination of the British military under Governor Guy Carleton, the difficult terrain and weather, and an indifferent local response. The Continental forces would be driven from Quebec in 1776, after the breakup of ice on the St. Lawrence River and the arrival of British transports in May and June. There would be no further serious attempt to challenge British control of present-day Canada until the War of 1812.
In 1777, 1,500 Loyalist militia took part in the Saratoga campaign in New York, and surrendered with General Burgoyne after the Battles of Saratoga in October. For the rest of the war Quebec acted as a base for raiding expeditions, conducted primarily by Loyalists and Indians, against frontier communities.
The Loyalists rarely attempted any political organization. They were often passive unless regular British army units were in the area. The British, however, assumed a highly activist Loyalist community was ready to mobilize and planned much of their strategy around raising Loyalist regiments. The British provincial line, consisting of Americans enlisted on a regular army status, enrolled 19,000 Loyalists (50 units and 312 companies). The maximum strength of the Loyalist provincial line was 9,700 in December 1780. In all about 19,000 at one time or another were soldiers or militia in British forces. Loyalists from South Carolina fought for the British in the Battle of Camden. The British forces at the Battle of Monck's Corner and the Battle of Lenud's Ferry consisted entirely of Loyalists with the exception of the commanding officer (Banastre Tarleton). Both white and black Loyalists fought for the British at the Battle of Kemp's Landing in Virginia.
Emigration from the United States
Historian Maya Jasanoff estimated how many Loyalists departed the U.S. She calculates 60,000 in total, including about 50,000 whites. The majority of them—about 33,000—went to New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, while about 6,600 went to Quebec and 2,000 to Prince Edward Island. About 5,000 white Loyalists went to Florida, bringing along their slaves who numbered about 6,500. About 13,000 went to Britain (including 5,000 free blacks). The 50,000 or-so white departures represented about 10% of the Loyalist element. Loyalists (especially soldiers and former officials) could choose evacuation. Loyalists whose roots were not yet deeply embedded in the United States were more likely to leave; older people who had familial bonds and had acquired friends, property, and a degree of social respectability were more likely to remain in the US. The vast majority of the half-million white Loyalists remained in the U.S. Starting in the mid-1780s a small percentage of those who had left returned to the United States. The exiles amounted to about 2% of the total US population of 3 million at the end of the war in 1783.
After 1783 some former Loyalists (especially Germans from Pennsylvania) emigrated to Canada to take advantage of the British government's offer of free land. Many departed because they faced continuing hostility.
The 33,000 or so who went to Nova Scotia were not well received by the Nova Scotians, who were mostly descendants of New Englanders settled there before the Revolution. "They [the Loyalists]", Colonel Thomas Dundas wrote in 1786, "have experienced every possible injury from the old inhabitants of Nova Scotia, who are even more disaffected towards the British Government than any of the new States ever were. This makes me much doubt their remaining long dependent." In response, the colony of New Brunswick, until 1784 part of Nova Scotia, was created for the 14,000 who had settled in those parts. Of the 46,000 who went to Canada, 10,000 went to the Province of Quebec especially what is now modern-day Ontario.
Realizing the importance of some type of consideration, on November 9, 1789, Lord Dorchester, the governor of Quebec, declared that it was his wish to "put the mark of Honour upon the Families who had adhered to the Unity of the Empire." As a result of Dorchester's statement, the printed militia rolls carried the notation:
Those Loyalists who have adhered to the Unity of the Empire, and joined the Royal Standard before the Treaty of Separation in the year 1783, and all their Children and their Descendants by either sex, are to be distinguished by the following Capitals, affixed to their names: U.E. Alluding to their great principle The Unity of the Empire.
The postnominals "U.E." are rarely seen today, but the influence of the Loyalists on the evolution of Canada remains. Their ties to Britain and their antipathy to the United States provided the strength needed to keep Canada independent and distinct in North America. The Loyalists' basic distrust of republicanism and "mob rule" influenced Canada's gradual path to independence. The new British North American provinces of Upper Canada (the forerunner of Ontario) and New Brunswick were founded as places of refuge for the United Empire Loyalists..
In an interesting historical twist Peter Matthews, a son of Loyalists, participated in the Upper Canada Rebellion which sought relief from oligarchic British colonial government and pursued American-style Republicanism. He was arrested, tried and executed in Toronto, and later became heralded as a patriot to the movement which led to Canadian self governance.
The wealthiest and most prominent Loyalist exiles went to Great Britain to rebuild their careers; many received pensions. Many Southern Loyalists, taking along their slaves, went to the West Indies and the Bahamas, particularly to the Abaco Islands.
Many Loyalists brought their slaves with them to Canada (mostly to areas that later became Ontario and New Brunswick) where slavery was legal. An imperial law in 1790 assured prospective immigrants to Canada that their slaves would remain their property.
Thousands of Iroquois and other Native Americans were expelled from New York and other states and resettled in Canada. The descendants of one such group of Iroquois, led by Joseph Brant (Thayendenegea), settled at Six Nations of the Grand River, the largest First Nations reserve in Canada. (The remainder, under the leadership of Cornplanter (John Abeel) and members of his family, stayed in New York.) A group of African-American Loyalists settled in Nova Scotia but emigrated again for Sierra Leone after facing discrimination there.
Benjamin Thompson (Count Rumford) was a Loyalist who fled to London when the war began. He became a scientist noted for pioneering thermodynamics and for his research on artillery ordnance. He expressed a desire to return to the United States in 1799 and was eagerly sought by the Americans (who needed help in fighting the Quasi-War with France). Rumford eventually decided to stay in London because he was engrossed with establishing the Royal Institution in England.
Many of the Loyalists were forced to abandon substantial amounts of property to America, and restoration of or compensation for this lost property was a major issue during the negotiation of the Jay Treaty in 1794.
Return of some expatriates
The great majority of Loyalists never left the United States; they stayed on and were allowed to be citizens of the new country. Some became nationally prominent leaders, including Samuel Seabury and Tench Coxe. Alexander Hamilton enlisted the help of the ex-Loyalists in New York in 1782–85 to forge an alliance with moderate Whigs to wrest the state from the power of the Clinton faction. Several thousand of those who had left for Florida returned to Georgia. There was a small, but significant trickle of returnees who found life in Nova Scotia too difficult. Some Massachusetts Tories settled in the Maine District. Nevertheless, the vast majority who did leave never returned.
Captain Benjamin Hallowell, who as Mandamus Councilor in Massachusetts served as the direct representative of the Crown, was considered by the insurgents as one of the most hated men in the Colony, but as a token of compensation when he returned from England in 1796, his son was allowed to regain the family house.
Impact of the departure of Loyalist leaders
The departure of so many royal officials, rich merchants and landed gentry destroyed the hierarchical networks that had dominated most of the colonies. In New York, the departure of key members of the DeLancy, DePester Walton and Cruger families undercut the interlocking families that largely owned and controlled the Hudson Valley. Likewise in Pennsylvania, the departure of powerful families—Penn, Allen, Chew, Shippen—destroyed the cohesion of the old upper class there. Massachusetts passed an act banishing forty-six Boston merchants in 1778, including members of some of Boston's wealthiest families. The departure of families such as the Ervings, Winslows, Clarks, and Lloyds deprived Massachusetts of men who had hitherto been leaders of networks of family and clients. The bases of the men who replaced them were much different. One rich Patriot in Boston noted in 1779 that "fellows who would have cleaned my shoes five years ago, have amassed fortunes and are riding in chariots." That is, new men now became rich merchants but they shared a spirit of republican equality that replaced the elitism and the Americans never recreated such a powerful upper class as had existed before.
Loyalists in art
- John Singleton Copley painted many prominent Loyalists and produced an oil-on-canvas depiction of a man wearing the uniform of the Royal Ethiopian Regiment (a regiment composed of black Loyalist soldiers) in The Death of Major Pierson (1784).
- Benjamin West portrayed the ethnic and economic diversity of the Loyalists in his Reception of the American Loyalists by Great Britain in the Year 1783. The original painting was lost, but a smaller version of it can be seen in the background of West's portrait of John Eardley Wilmot.
- Gilbert Stuart painted a portrait of James DeLancey around 1785. It hangs in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a bequest of his descendant George DeLancey Harris, Jr. of New York City and Annapolis Royal, NS.
Loyalists in literature
- The Adventures of Jonathan Corncob, Loyal American Refugee (1787) by Jonathan Corncob. According to Maya Jasanoff, "traveling to London to file a claim served as the opening gambit" for this "picaresque novel about the American Revolution".
- "Rip Van Winkle" (1819), short story by Washington Irving
- The Spy: a Tale of the Neutral Ground (1821), novel by James Fenimore Cooper
- Oliver Wiswell (1940), a novel by Kenneth Roberts
- The Fort (2010), novel by Bernard Cornwell
- Samuel Adams (1730–1810), Vermont physician; not related to Samuel Adams the Patriot leader in Boston
- Rev. H. Addison of Maryland was forbidden to ever live in his home state after the Revolution.
- Rev. John Agnew (d. 1812, New Brunswick) served a Church of England parish in Suffolk, Virginia.
- Samuel Aikens, Land grant dated 2 June 1785 Guysborough, Nova Scotia, Canada
- Andrew Allen (1740–1825), Pennsylvanian Delegate to the Second Continental Congress
- Isaac Allen (d. 1806 age 65) Trenton, New Jersey attorney indicted for treason
- William Allen (1704–1780), Chief Justice of the Province of Pennsylvania and former mayor of Philadelphia
- Rev. Samuel Andrews (d. 1812) fled from his Patriot Church of England parishioners and died in New Brunswick at the age of 82.
- Samuel Andrews of North Carolina served as a major in the Loyal Militia.
- Brigadier General Benedict Arnold, (Jan. 14, 1741 [O.S. Jan. 3, 1740/1741] – June 14, 1801) commissioned in 1780; originally a Patriot general
- Oliver Arnold, a Connecticut native and Yale graduate relocated to Sussex, New Brunswick where he served as the local vicar
- John Askin (1739–1815), trader and land speculator at Detroit
- John Bacon (died 1783), New Jersey privateer and marauder who preyed on Patriots in and around the Pine Barrens and South East New Jersey
- Thomas Henry Barclay (1753–1830), New York City lawyer and later Governor of Nova Scotia
- Dr. Richard Bayley (1745-1801), New York physician and father of American-born saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
- Rev. John Beardsley (1732-1809), Anglican minister in Poughkeepsie, New York and Fishkill, New York who, in 1778, he served as chaplain to Beverley Robinson's Loyal American Regiment
- Joseph Bettys, resident of the Town of Ballston, New York. Hanged as a spy in 1782.
- Christopher Billopp (c. 1738 – March 29, 1827), Staten Island resident who commanded a Tory detachment
- Sampson Salter Blowers (March 10, 1742 – October 25, 1842), Boston, MA attorney
- Amos Botsford (1744-1812), Yale College graduate and judge
- Jonathan Boucher (1738–1804) Church of England priest in Maryland and Virginia and tutor to John Parke Custis, the stepson of George Washington
- William Augustus Bowles (1763–1805), also known as Estajoca, served with the Maryland Loyalist Battalion and was a Maryland-born English adventurer and organizer of Native American attempts to create their own state outside of Euro-American control.
- Joseph Brant Thayendenegea (1743–1807), Mohawk war leader
- Molly Brant (c.1736–1796), also known as Mary Brant, Konwatsi'tsiaienni, and Degonwadonti, was an influential Mohawk leader and sister of Joseph Brant.
- Thomas Brown (1750–1825), LTC commanding King's Rangers in Georgia
- Brigadier General Montfort Browne (fl. 1760–1780), commanding Prince of Wales American Regiment, 1777
- William Bull II (1710-1791), lieutenant governor of the province of South Carolina from 1759 until 1775
- Colonel John Butler (1728–1796), commanding Butler's Rangers in the Mohawk Valley
- Walter Butler (1752–1781), Captain in Butler's Rangers and son of John Butler
- Rev. Mather Byles (1706–1788), Harvard graduate and prominent Boston clergyman
- William Caldwell (c. 1750–1822), Scots-Irish who served in Butler's Rangers
- Benedict Swingate Calvert (ca. 1730 to 1732–1788), Judge of the Land Office, Maryland
- Elizabeth Calvert (1731 – 1788) wife and cousin of Loyalist politician Benedict Swingate Calvert
- Rev. John Camm (1718–1778), seventh president of the College of William and Mary
- Lt. Col. James Chalmers (d. 1806), Commander, First Battalion of Maryland Loyalists and author of anti-"Common Sense" pamphlet "Plain Truth" in 1776
- Richard Clarke (1711–1795) Boston merchant
- Christian Daniel Claus (1727–1787), commissioner of Indian affairs
- Col. Daniel Clary's Reg. Dutch Fork Militia, 96 Brigade, South Carolina 1773–1783
- Cheney Clow (1734–1788), a Delaware plantation owner who had served earlier as a British officer. He was involved in an act of hostility on the morning of April 18, 1778 which is known today as Cheney Clow's Rebellion.
- Sir Isaac Coffin, 1st Baronet (1759–1839), Royal Navy officer and member of a prominent Massachusetts Loyalist family
- Nathaniel Coffin, Receiver-General of HM Customs of Boston at the time of the Boston Tea Party
- John Connolly (c.1741 - 1813), planned with Lord Dunmore to raise a regiment of Loyalists and Indians in Canada called the Loyal Foresters and lead them to Virginia to help Dunmore put down the rebellion
- Myles Cooper (1735–1785), Church of England clergyman President of King's College in New York City
- John Singleton Copley (1738–1815), innovative American painter
- Brigadier General Robert Cunningham (died in Nassau in 1813 at the age of 74), in 1780 in command of a garrison in South Carolina
- William Cunningham (d. 1787, Nassau, Bahamas) earned the name ″Bloody Bill″ for his exploits against Backcountry South Carolina Patriots
- James De Lancey (1746–1804), of Westchester County, New York, led a Loyalist unit known as "De Lancey’s Cowboys" and was known as the "Outlaw of the Bronx."
- Brigadier General Oliver DeLancey (1718-1785), commanding De Lancey's Brigade 1776
- Stephen De Lancey (1738–1809), Loyalist lawyer and political figure in New York state and Nova Scotia
- Abraham DePeyster, Officer of King's American Regiment
- Colonel Arent DePeyster (1736–1822), Officer of the 8th Regiment of Foot
- Colonel Andrew Deveaux (1758–1812), Colonel in South Carolina Loyalist militia
- Doan Outlaws, fallen Pennsylvania Quaker family of British spies and bandits
- Margaret Green Draper (1727–ca. 1804), Boston printer and journalist, was one of the first American women to run an independent business. A United Empire Loyalist, Draper supported the British.
- Sir Robert Eden, 1st Baronet, of Maryland (ca. 1741–1784), Provincial Governor of Maryland and last Royal Governor of Maryland
- Jacob Ellegood (1742–1801), Virginia-born farmer who became a political figure in early New Brunswick
- Thomas Fairfax, 6th Lord Fairfax of Cameron (1693–1781), of Virginia was the only British peer resident in Colonial America.
- David Fanning (1755–1825), commander of militia in North Carolina, and later Member of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick from 1791 to 1801
- Edmund Fanning (1739–1818), commanded militia in the War of the Regulation and Loyalist militia in the American Revolution; later Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia and Saint John's Island.
- David Farnsworth (d. 1778), British agent hanged for his participation in a plot to undermine the American economy by distributing counterfeit currency
- Elizabeth Graeme Fergusson, female Loyalist who wrote poems lamenting her husband's desertion of her. These poems shared the grief that she and other women left behind were feeling.
- William Franklin (ca. 1730–1813), Governor of New Jersey, son of Benjamin Franklin
- Rebecca Franks (1760–1823), prominent member of Loyalist society in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania during the American Revolution
- Shaddrick Furman, a Virginia free black, was a guide and information source for British troops. Upon his capture by Patriots, he was beaten and blinded. He received a pension of £18 per year for life from the Loyalist Claims Commission.
- Joseph Galloway (1731–1803), Member of the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly
- Grace Growden Galloway (1727-1783), Female loyalist who documented her fight for property rights
- Micajah Ganey (1756–1830), Loyalist leader of the Pee Dee defeated by Francis Marion
- Alexander Garden (1720-1791) Scottish-born naturalist who lived in Charles Town, SC until fleeing to London in 1783
- Dr. Silvester Gardiner (1708–1786) Massachusetts physician, visionary land developer who in 1774 added his name to a letter addressed to Massachusetts Royal Governor Thomas Hutchinson, affirming his allegiance to the Loyalist cause
- David George (ca. 1743–1810) African-American Baptist preacher and a Black Loyalist from the American South who escaped to British lines in Savannah, Georgia; later he accepted transport to Nova Scotia and land there. He eventually resettled in Freetown, Sierra Leone.
- Abraham Gesner (1756-1851), serving with the King's Orange Rangers during the American Revolution, purchased a commission of major in the British Army.
- Simon Girty (1741–1818), British liaison with the Indians
- Harrison Gray (1711–1794) was a wealthy merchant and Treasurer and Receiver-General for the Province of Massachusetts Bay
- Joseph Gray (1729–1803) Boston, MA Loyalist and progenitor of noted Canadian family
- John Hamilton (died 1816), commander of the Royal North Carolina Regiment, later British consul in Norfolk, Virginia
- Reuben Hankinson, Ensign, First New Jersey Volunteers, September 1780
- Harpe brothers, North Carolina bandits and allegedly America's first serial killers
- Joseph Harris, a runaway mulatto slave of Henry King, of Hampton, Virginia — smuggled supplies for the British
- John Howe (1754–1835), Printer of the Massachusetts Gazette and Boston Weekly News-Letter
- Thomas Hutchinson (1711–1780), Last royal Governor of Massachusetts
- Charles Inglis (1734–1816), first Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Nova Scotia
- Ralph Inman (1713–1788), Boston, Massachusetts merchant
- Samuel Jarvis (1720-1780), Stamford, Connecticut official forced out of office due to his Loyalism and father of William Jarvis
- William Jarvis (1756-1817), New Yorker who served in the Queen's Rangers
- Edward Jessup (1735–1816), Colonel of Jessup's Loyal Rangers near Albany, New York and his two brothers Ebenezer and Joseph
- Sir John Johnson (1741–1820), commander of the King's Royal Regiment of New York
- Capt. Joseph Jones, while serving under Micajah Ganey's command, Capt. Jones led a band of raiders who hung Patriot Col. Abel Kolb in front of his wife and children, although they had just promised him his safety as a prisoner-of-war.
- Thomas Jones (1731-1792), Recorder of New York City from 1769 until 1773 and historian who authored History of New York During the Revolutionary War and of the Leading Events in the Other Colonies at That Period, fleeing to Britain, he died in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire.
- Boston King (ca. 1760–1802), Black Loyalist, who settled in Nova Scotia and later emigrated to Sierra Leone, where he helped found Freetown and became the first Methodist missionary to African indigenous people
- John Lawrence (1708/9–1791), surveyor who ran the Lawrence Line between East and West Jersey, was jailed, despite his age, for espousing support of the Crown
- Elisha Leavitt (1714–1790), Hingham, Massachusetts merchant and landowner
- Nicholas Lechmere, Newport, Rhode Island Officer of the Customs
- Sir Egerton Leigh, 1st Baronet (1733–1781), South Carolina colonial official
- Daniel Leonard (1740-1829), son of a Taunton, MA Patriot, he later served as the Chief Justice of the Bermudas
- John Lovell, Headmaster of the Boston Latin School
- Isaac Low (1735–1791), Delegate for New York to the First Continental Congress in 1774 and to New York Provincial Congress and first President of the New York Chamber of Commerce
- Gabriel Ludlow, New York merchant
- George Ludlow, New York judge
- David Mathews, Princeton University graduate and Mayor of New York City; subsequent administrator of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
- William McCormick (1742–1815), North Carolina merchant
- Colonel Alexander McKee (ca. 1735–1799), liaison between the British and the Shawnees
- Benjamin Milliken, founder of Ellsworth Maine, mill and ship owner
- James Moody, Lieutenant, First New Jersey Volunteers, March 1781
- Benjamin Moore (1748–1816), Assistant Rector of Trinity Church, New York City whose son Clement composed "A Visit from St. Nicholas", which later became famous as "'Twas the Night Before Christmas"
- Peter Nagle, a Continental soldier sentenced to death in 1777 for attempting to join the Loyalist forces
- Rev. Jonathan Odell (1737-1818), New Jersey Anglican clergyman and Loyalist poet
- David Ogden (1707–1800), New Jersey Council member and Judge of the Supreme Court and brother to Robert Ogden
- Robert Ogden, Speaker of the New Jersey House of Assembly and member of the Stamp Act Congress
- Peter Oliver (1713–1791), Massachusetts judge briefly satirized in McFingal
- William Parker (d. 1781 age 77) Portsmouth, NH Judge of the Superior Court
- Richard Pearis (1725–1794), an Indian trader and a pioneer settler, of Upstate South Carolina
- Josiah Phillips (d. 1778), led a band of Tories, commissioned by Lord Dunmore, who upon capture was executed
- John Randolph (1727–1784), King's Attorney for the Province of Virginia
- Anna Rawle, a women loyalist who used letter-diaries to spy and transfer information about Rebels in PA to loyalist in New York
- Colonel Beverley Robinson (1723–1792), of New York, Loyal American Regiment
- Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Rogers (1731–1795), commander of Rogers' Rangers/Queen's Rangers to 1777 (now The Queen's York Rangers (1st American Regiment) (RCAC)), innovator of ranging tactics
- Peggy Shippen (1760–1804), Philadelphia socialite and second wife of Benedict Arnold
- John Graves Simcoe (1752–1806), commander of Queen's Rangers from 1777 (now The Queen's York Rangers (1st American Regiment) (RCAC), and founding Lieutenant Governor of Upper Canada (today: The Province of Ontario, Canada)
- James Simpson (1737–1815), Attorney General of Colonial South Carolina; buried in the Temple Church, London
- Philip Skene, (1725-1810), colonial New York "patroon" and British officer, of Scottish birth
- Brigadier Cortlandt Skinner (1727–1799), commanding New Jersey Volunteers, Sept. 4, 1776
- Lieutenant-Colonel William Stark (1724–1776), of New Hampshire, was a brother of John Stark, a major general in the Continental Army
- George H. Steuart (1700–1784), Planter, Judge of the Land Office, Maryland
- Joel Stone (1749–1833), Connecticut merchant who helped Loyalists escape to British controlled part of the Colonies, including David Mathews
- Duncan Stewart (d. 1793), New London, Connecticut Royal Collector of the Customs
- John Taylor, Captain, First New Jersey Volunteers, January 1781
- Sir Benjamin Thompson (Count Rumford) (1753–1814), of Massachusetts, Royal official and scientist
- William Tryon (1729–1788), Royal Governor of North Carolina
- Philip Van Cortlandt (1739–1814), New York-born Major of the Third Battalion of New Jersey Volunteers
- Peter van Schaack (March 1747 - 17 September 1832), New York lawyer
- John Vardill (July 5, 1749 – January 16, 1811) New York City-born British spy, clergyman, educator, pamphleteer, playwright, and poet
- Sir John Wentworth, 1st Baronet (1737–1820), last Royal Governor of New Hampshire at the time of the American Revolution and also Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia
- Robert Winthrop (1764-1832), descendant of John Winthrop and Vice Admiral in the British Navy, residing in England
- Charles Woodmason (ca. 1720–1789) Church of England missionary in South Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland, diarist, poet, and corresponding member of the Royal Society of Arts, London. He authored an article published (under the pseudonym "Sylvanus") in the South Carolina Gazette and Country-Journal on March 28, 1769 chiding the local Patriot leaders for hypocrisy and asked pointedly how they could justly complain of "No taxation without representation!" regarding Acts of Parliament, while these very same powerful men denied the Carolina Backcountry any representation in South Carolina's Assembly, yet, expected them to pay taxes passed by that body.
- Gov. James Wright (1716-1785), last Royal Governor of Georgia, buried in Westminster Abbey
X, Y, Z
- Loyalists in the American Revolution
- Expulsion of the Loyalists
- Frederick Haldimand (1718–1791) while serving in Canada amassed a huge collection filling 115 microfilm reels of documents, letters, etc. reflecting the Loyalist experience in Canada. A partial finding aid to this collection may be found on the Queens University Archives website.
- Godfrey–Milliken Bill, proposed Canadian law demanding compensation from the U.S. for Loyalist claims after U.S. independence.
- Irish military diaspora
- Lorenzo Sabine (1803–1877) early historian and chronicler of the Loyalist experience.
- Martin v. Hunter's Lessee
- Maryland Loyalists Battalion
- Treaty of Paris (1783)
- Ulster loyalism (loyalism in Northern Ireland)
- United Empire Loyalist
- Grace Growden Galloway
- Barbara Smith (2013). The Freedoms We Lost: Consent and Resistance in Revolutionary America. New Press. p. 142.
- Jack P. Greene and J. R. Pole, eds, A Companion to the American Revolution (2004) pp. 246, 399, 641–2
- Calhoon, "Loyalism and neutrality", p. 235; Middlekauff (2005) pp. 563–564; Thomas B. Allen, Tories: Fighting for the King in America's First Civil War (2010) p. xx
- Andrews, p.284
- Jassanoff, ch 1
- Robinson, Charles Walker. Life of Sir John Beverly Robinson, bart., C.B., D.C.L., chief-justice of Upper Canada. 1904, page 469.
- Leonard Woods Larabee, Conservatism in Early American History (1948) pp 164–65
- See also N. E. H. Hull, Peter C. Hoffer and Steven L. Allen, "Choosing Sides: A Quantitative Study of the Personality Determinants of Loyalist and Revolutionary Political Affiliation in New York," Journal of American History, (1978) 65#2 pp. 344–366 in JSTOR
- Edwin G. Burrows and Michael Wallace, "The American Revolution: The Ideology and Psychology of National Liberation," Perspectives in American History, (1972) vol. 6 pp 167–306
- Mark Jodoin. Shadow Soldiers of the American Revolution: Loyalist Tales from New York to Canada. 2009. ISBN 978-1-59629-726-5. The History Press, Charleston, SC.
- Hull, Hoffer and Allen, "Choosing Sides (1978), p, 352
- Hull, Hoffer and Allen, "Choosing Sides (1978), pp 347, 354, 365
- Calhoun (1973)[page needed]
- Georgia Encyclopædia.
- Robert M. Calhoon, in 'A companion to the American Revolution', (2000); p 235.
- John Adams has sometimes been cited as having claimed, in an 1813 letter, that one-third of Americans supported the revolution and one-third were against. However, the passage in question actually refers to the French Revolution of 1789. See "Only 1/3 of Americans Supported the American Revolution?", by William Marina. 6-28-2004. Retrieved on July 14, 2008.
- See The American Revolution and the Minority Myth. January 1, 1975. By William Marina. Retrieved on July 14 2008; "The Works of John Adams", Volume X, p. 63: To Thomas McKean, August 1813.
- Ray Raphael (2012). A People's History of the American Revolution. The New Press. p. 393.
- Paul H. Smith, "The American Loyalists: Notes on Their Organization and Numerical Strength," William and Mary Quarterly (1968) 25#2 pp. 259–277 in JSTOR
- Middlekauff, Robert. The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763–1789 (1985), p 550.
- Calhoon (1973)
- See online NPS.gov
- Louis P. Masur (1989). Rites of Execution: Capital Punishment and the Transformation of American Culture, 1776-1865. Oxford UP. p. 75.
- Tillman, Kacy Dowd (2016). "Women Left Behind: Female Loyalism, Coverture, and Grace Growden Galloway's Empire of Self". Women's Narratives of the Early Americas and the Formation of Empire. New York City, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 142, 143,.
- Baxter, Beverly (1978). "Grace Growden Galloway". Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies. 62.
- Aptheker, Herbert (1960). The American Revolution, 1763–1783. International Publishers Co. p. 169. ISBN 0-7178-0005-9.
- Mason Wade, The French Canadians (1955) 1:67–9.
- George Rawlyck, A People Highly Favoured Of God. The Nova Scotia Yankees. And the American Revolution (Toronto: 1972)
- Philip Buckner and John G Reid, eds. The Atlantic Region to Confederation: A History (1995) pp 168–170
- J.B. Brebner, The Neutral Yankees of Nova Scotia (1937)
- Smith 264–7.
- Calhoon 502.
- Smith, p 267
- Wilson, David. The Southern Strategy (University of South Carolina Press. 2005.)
- Selby, John E; Higginbotham, Don (2007)
- Maya Jasanoff (2012). Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World. Random House. p. 357.
- Lohrenz (1998)
- Neil MacKinnon, This Unfriendly Soil: The Loyalist Experience in Nova Scotia, 1783–1791 (1989)
- S.D. Clark, Movements of Political Protest in Canada, 1640–1840, (1959), pp. 150–51
- Patrick Bode, "Upper Canada, 1793: Simcoe and the Slaves." Beaver 1993 73(3): 17–19
- Bradley 1974
- Gordon S. Wood (1992). The Radicalism of the American Revolution. Random House. p. 177.
- Maya Jasanoff (2011), p, 386, n. 67.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 154.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 154–155.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 159.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 157–158.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 165.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 165-166.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 184.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 222-223.
- Stone, William Leete (1838). Life of Joseph Brant, Thayendanegea. New York: George Dearborn & Co. pp. 210––214. Retrieved Dec 11, 2015.
- Anne Y. Zimmer. Jonathan Boucher, loyalist in exile. Detroit, MI: Wayne State University Press, 1978.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 240–241.
- Maya Jasanoff (2011), pp. xiv–xv,234–242, 321–323, 348.
- J. Leitch Wright. William Augusutus Bowles: Director General of the Creek Nation. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1967.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 245-246.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 260–265.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 278–280.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 280.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 301.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 323–324.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 335.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 346–347.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 348-349.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 363–366.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 372–374.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 377–378.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 381–383.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 402.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 408–412.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 417–418.
- Jasanoff (2011), pp. 127–128, 138.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 453–457.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 458.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 489–490.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 511-512.
- Hankinson Online: An Online Resource for Hankinson Genealogy
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 519.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 548–550.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, pp. 563-565.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 566.
- Alexander Gregg. History of the Old Cheraws. New York: Richardson and Co., 1867, pp. 359–364.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 1, p. 595.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 2.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 8.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 9–10.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 10–12.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 29–30.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 32–33.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 55.
- Historical Biographies, Nova Scotia, 1800–1867
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 88-100.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 118.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 123-126.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 123.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 128-129.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 148.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 184-185.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 208–209.
- Maya Jasanoff (2011), pp. xi, 34–36, 93–94, 123–125, 131, 134, 143, 313.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 221–225.
- An exercise in futility: the pre-Revolutionary career and influence of loyalist James Simpson by James Riley Hill, III. M. A. Thesis. University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, 1992. viii, 109 leaves ; 28 cm. OCLC 30807526
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 302.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, p. 331.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 364–366.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 376–377.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 410–413.
- Stark, James. The loyalists of Massachusetts and the other side of the American Revolution. Boston, 1910, pages 426-429.
- Richard J. Hooker, ed. The Carolina Backcountry on the Eve of the Revolution: The Journal and Other Writings of Charles Woodmason, Anglican Itinerant. 1953.
- Joseph R. Gainey. "Rev. Charles Woodmason (c. 1720–1789): Author, Loyalist, Missionary, and Psalmodist." West Gallery: The Newsletter of the West Gallery Music Association, Issue No. 59 (Autumn 2011), pp. 18–25.
- South Carolina Gazette and Country-Journal in the March 28, 1769 issue (much abridged and heavily edited). The complete text is in Hooker, pp. 260–263.
- Sabine (1864), Vol. 2, pp. 466–468.
- Allen, Thomas B. Tories: Fighting for the King in America's First Civil War. New York: HarperCollins, 2010. 496 pp. ISBN 9780061241819
- Andrews, Matthew Page, History of Maryland, Doubleday, New York (1929)
- Bailyn, Bernard. The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution (2nd ed. 1992) pp 230–319.
- ———. The Ordeal of Thomas Hutchinson: Loyalism and the Destruction of the First British Empire (1974), full scale biography of the most prominent Loyalist
- Brown, Wallace. The King's Friends: The Composition and Motives of the American Loyalist Claimants (1966).
- Calhoon, Robert M. "Loyalism and neutrality" in Jack P. Greene and J.R. Pole, eds., The Blackwell Encyclopedia of the American Revolution (1991); reprinted in Greene, Jack P.; Pole, J. R. (2008). A Companion to the American Revolution. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 235–47.
- Calhoon, Robert M. The Loyalists in Revolutionary America, 1760–1781 (1973), the most detailed scholarly study
- Calhoon, Robert M., Timothy M. Barnes and George A. Rawlyk, eds. Loyalists and Community in North America (1994).
- Chopra, Ruma. "Enduring Patterns of Loyalist Study: Definitions and Contours" History Compass (2013) 11#11 pp 983–993, DOI: 10.1111/hic3.12105
- Doré, Gilbert. "Why The Loyalists Lost," Early America Review (Winter 2000) online, focus on ideology
- Jasanoff, Maya. Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World (2011), excellent comprehensive treatment and winner of the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award for Non-Fiction and 2012 George Washington Book Prize
- Jensen, Merrill. The New Nation: A History of the United States during the Confederation, 1781–1789 1950; detailed discussion of return of Loyalists, popular anger at their return; repeal of wartime laws against them
- Kermes, Stephanie. "'I Wish for Nothing More Ardent upon Earth, than to See My Friends and Country Again': The Return of Massachusetts Loyalists." Historical Journal of Massachusetts 2002 30(1): 30–49. ISSN 0276-8313
- Kerber, Linda. Women of the Republic: Intellect and Ideology in Revolutionary America (1997)
- Knowles, Norman. Inventing the Loyalists: The Ontario Loyalist Tradition and the Creation of Usable Pasts (1997) explores the identities and loyalties of those who moved to Canada.
- Middlekauff, Robert. "The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763–1789." (2005 edition)
- Moore, Christopher. The Loyalist: Revolution Exile Settlement. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, (1994).
- Mason, Keith. “The American Loyalist Diaspora and the Reconfiguration of the British Atlantic World.” In Empire and Nation: The American Revolution and the Atlantic World, ed. Eliga H. Gould and Peter S. Onuf (2005).
- Nelson, William H. The American Tory (1961)
- Norton, Mary Beth. The British-Americans: The Loyalist Exiles in England, 1774–1789. Boston, MA: Little, Brown, 1972.
- ———. Liberty's Daughters: The Revolutionary Experience of American Women, 1750–1800 (1996)
- ———. "The Problem of the Loyalist—and the Problems of Loyalist Historians," Reviews in American History June 1974 v.2 #2 pp 226–231
- Peck, Epaphroditus; The Loyalists of Connecticut Yale University Press, (1934) online
- Potter, Janice. The Liberty We Seek: Loyalist Ideology in Colonial New York and Massachusetts (1983).
- Quarles, Benjamin; Black Mosaic: Essays in Afro-American History and Historiography University of Massachusetts Press. (1988)
- Ryerson, Egerton. The Loyalists of America and Their Times: From 1620 to 1816. 2 volumes. Second edition. 1880.
- Smith, Paul H. "The American Loyalists: Notes on Their Organization and Numerical Strength," William and Mary Quarterly 25 (1968): 259–77. in JSTOR
- Van Tyne, Claude Halstead. The Loyalists in the American Revolution (1902) online
- Wade, Mason. The French Canadians: 1760–1945 (1955) 2 vol.
- Gray, Rev. J. W. D. A Sermon, Preached at Trinity Church, in the parish of St. John, N. B., on the 8th December, 1857, by the Rev. J. W. D. Gray, D.D., and Designed to Recommend the Principles of the Loyalists of 1783. St. John, New Brunswick: J. & A. McMillan, Printers, 1857. 15 pp. Internet Archive pdf; title incorrectly gives the year as 1847.
Compiled volumes of biographical sketches
- Palmer, Gregory. Biographical Sketches of Loyalists of the American Revolution. Greenwood Publishing Group, Inc., 1983. 998 pp. ISBN 9780313281020
- Sabine, Lorenzo. The American Loyalists, or Biographical Sketches of Adherents to the British Crown in The War of the Revolution; Alphabetically Arranged; with a Preliminary Historical Essay. Boston, MA: Charles C. Little and James Brown, 1847. Google Book vi, 733 pp.
- ———. Biographical Sketches of Loyalists of the American Revolution, with an Historical Essay. 2 volumes. Boston, MA: Little, Brown and Company, 1864. Google Book Volume 1—vi, 608 pp. Google Book Volume 2—600 pp.
Studies of individual Loyalists
- "Boucher, Jonathan". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
- Gainey, Joseph R. "Rev. Charles Woodmason (c. 1720–1789): Author, Loyalist, Missionary, and Psalmodist." West Gallery: The Newsletter of the West Gallery Music Association (ISSN 0960-4227), Issue No. 59 (Autumn 2011), pp. 18–25. This undocumented article is the first publication to identify Woodmason's parents, background, baptism, marriage, and burial dates and places and contains much previously unavailable information.
- Hill, James Riley, III. An exercise in futility: the pre-Revolutionary career and influence of loyalist James Simpson. M. A. Thesis. University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, 1992. viii, 109 leaves ; 28 cm. OCLC 30807526
- Hooker, Richard J., ed. The Carolina Backcountry on the Eve of the Revolution: The Journal and Other Writings of Charles Woodmason, Anglican Itinerant. 1953. ISBN 978-0-8078-4035-1
- Lohrenz, Otto; "The Advantage of Rank and Status: Thomas Price, a Loyalist Parson of Revolutionary Virginia." The Historian. 60#3 (1998) pp 561+. online
- Randall, Willard Sterne. A Little Revenge: Benjamin Franklin & His Son Little, Brown & Co, 1984.
- Skemp, Sheila. William Franklin: Son of a Patriot, Servant of a King Oxford University Press, 1990.
- Wright, J. Leitch. William Augusutus Bowles: Director General of the Creek Nation. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1967.
- Zimmer, Anne Y. Jonathan Boucher, loyalist in exile. Detroit, MI: Wayne State University Press, 1978.
Primary sources and guides to manuscripts and the literature
- Allen, Robert S. Loyalist Literature: An Annotated Bibliographic Guide to the Writings on the Loyalists of the American Revolution. Issue 2 of Dundurn Canadian historical document series, 1982. ISBN 9780919670617
- Brown, Wallace. "Loyalist Historiography." Acadiensis, Vol. 4, No. 1 (Autumn 1974), pp. 133–138. Link to downloadable pdf of this article.
- ———. "The View at Two Hundred Years: The Loyalists of the American Revolution", Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society, Vol. 80, Part 1 (April 1970), pp. 25–47.
- Crary, Catherine S., ed. Price of Loyalty: Tory Writings from the Revolutionary Era (1973)
- Egerton, Hugh Edward, ed. The Royal commission on the losses and services of American loyalists, 1783 to 1785, being the notes of Mr. Daniel Parker Coke, M. P., one of the commissioners during that period. Oxford: The Roxburghe Club, 1915. Link to downloadable pdf
- Galloway, Joseph. The claim of the American loyalists: reviewed and maintained upon incontrovertible principles of law and justice. G. and T. Wilkie, 1788. Downloadable Google Book pdf 138 pages
- Guide to the The Loyalist Collection website, Harriet Irving Library, Fredericton campus, University of New Brunswick, Canada
- Guide to the New York Public Library Loyalist Collection (19 pdfs)
- Palmer, Gregory S. A Bibliography of Loyalist Source Material in the United States, Canada, and Great Britain. Westport, CT, 1982.
- The Particular Case of the Georgia Loyalists: in Addition to the General Case and Claim of the American Loyalists, which was Lately Published by Order of Their Agents. February, 1783. n.p.:n.p., 1783. 16 pp. Google Book pdf
- American Loyalists
- The American Loyalists: Or, Biographical Sketches of Adherents to the ... (1847) by Lorenzo Sabine. Complete text of the first of two editions (the second appeared in 1864 in two volumes) of Sabine's magnum opus in pdf format.
- Benjamin Franklin to Baron Francis Maseres, June 26, 1785 (Opinion of Benjamin Franklin on persons who called themselves "Loyalists", whom he judged better called "Royalists")
- Bibliography of the Loyalist Participation in the American Revolution compiled by the United States Army Center of Military History
- "Black Loyalists: Our History, Our People"
- Haldimand Collection The main source for historians in the study of the settlement of the American Loyalists in Canada. More than 20,000 letters and documents, now fully indexed, and free on the Web.
- James Chalmers and "Plain Truth" (A Loyalist Answers Thomas Paine)
- The Loyalist Declaration of Independence published in The Royal Gazette, (New York) on November 17, 1781 (Transcription provided by Bruce Wallace and posted on The On-Line Institute for Advanced Loyalist Studies.)
- The Loyalist Link: The Forest and The Sea – Port Roseway Loyalists
- Loyalist Page – Cyndi's List
- The Loyalist Research Network (LRN) This website focuses on Canadian Loyalists, but, the links and bibliographies are extremely helpful to all serious Loyalist researchers.
- The On-Line Institute for Advanced Loyalist Studies
- "Remembering Black Loyalists, Black Communities in Nova Scotia"
- "A Short History of the United Empire Loyalists" Ann Mackenzie
- South Carolina
- Lambert, Robert Stansbury (2011). South Carolina Loyalists in the American Revolution (2nd ed.). Clemson, SC: Clemson University Digital Press. External link in
|title=(help) Originally published in 1987. 272 pages, available online in PDF format.
- “What is a Loyalist? The American Revolution as civil war” by Prof. Edward Larkin published in www.common-place.org, Vol. 8, No. 1 (October 2007).
- Why Were Some of Our Ancestors Tories?
- a lecture by Maya Jasanoff. "An Imperial Disaster? The Loyalist Diaspora after the American Revolution". youtube.
- Thomas B. Allen. "Video discussing his book". Tories: Fighting for the King in America's First Civil War.
- Thomas B. Allen. "Lecture on his book at the Library of Congress". Tories: Fighting for the King in America's First Civil War.
- YaleCourses YouTube (Uploaded March 18, 2011). "Who Were the Loyalists? (Youtube video)". The American Revolution (HIST 116), Session 9 (of 25). Check date values in: