While Recommended Reads is on hiatus, I will be sharing some digitized resources that I have written through the years and will also share a few very locale-specific books that have been invaluable to me along my genealogical journey.
Today, I’d like to share my published work on Loyalist James Astle of New York, Quebec and New Brunswick. As with my Williams book, I donated a copy of this article to the Family History Library, which has recently digitized it. However, for some unknown reason, access is limited to viewing at the library. I’ve sent an email request and made an in-person request the last time I was there to change the settings to allow public viewing online, but that has not happened.
This article was written back in 1993 and printed out on a dot matrix printer. (NOTE: This is now digitally accessible on FamilySearch.)
James Astle married Elizabeth McLean in Schenectady, New York in 1770. They had the following children:
1. Angelica, who married (1) Abel Davis and (2) James Walls. Angelica was born in 1774 and died between 1818 and 1836
2. Hannah (possibly) who married Benjamin Davis. She was probably born about 1776
3. John, who married Hannah Underhill Vanderbeck. He was born in 1779 and died 15 December 1856
4. Daniel, who married Jane, maiden name unproven but possibly Parker. He was born about 1783 and died by November 1817.
5. Joseph, who married Mary, maiden name unproven but likely Cooper. He was born about 1786 and died 19 January 1870.
6. Elizabeth (possibly) who married John Mitchell. Elizabeth died between February 1816 and 1 June 1818.
Loyalist James Astle has hundreds of descendants today. The name was quite unique in colonial America and most of his grandchildren remained in New Brunswick, Canada for many years. A few ventured back into Maine in the late 1800’s.
There was a second James Astle on the 1784 Paspebiac, Quebec lists. He appears to be a younger man than my James and was unmarried at the time. DNA testing by a 4x great grandson of each of these James Astles shows a common ancestor within about eight generations.
I have never had the feeling that these two men were father and son, although it is possible. However, I think it is more likely that they were uncle and nephew or cousins, as they didn’t even resettle in the same province. My James went to New Brunswick, while the young James remained in Quebec.
To my knowledge, the majority of descendants in these two Astle families remained in Canada, but I have not tried to trace them into the 1900’s. There are a few descendants, like me, who live in the United States and are descended from the Astles who moved to Maine.
Please contact me if you are a descendant of either James Astle.