William was a loyalist from New Jersey and served as a private in General DeLancey's 3rd battalion of provincial troops.(1)
"Muster Roll of a Company Commanded by Captain Elijah Miles belonging to the third Battalion of the Brigade whereof Oliver DeLancey Esq. is Brigadier General, Taken at Satauket August 24th 1777... Privates... William Eldridge..."(2)
William was listed on the muster rolls for Satauket for 24 Oct. 1777(3); for Herricke for Dec. 1777, Feb. and Apr. 1778(4); for Camp Long Island, Flushing, NY for June and Sept. 1778(5); for Lloyd's Neck, Long Island from Oct. 1778 until Oct. 1780.(6) He was then listed in Capt. Miles' Company stationed at Flushing 24 Feb. 1781(7)
"George the Third by the Grace of God of Great Britain France and Ireland King... Know Ye that we of our special Grace, certain Knowledge... have given and granted... unto... William Eldridge...(in addition to 30 others) unto each of them... several lots of land... within a tract of land known by the name of the six acre lots the said tract situate, lying and being on the northerly and easterly sides of Beaver harbour within the parish of Pennfield in Charlotte County... reserving... to us... all white pine trees if any such shall be found growing thereon and also saving and reserving to us...all Mines of Gold, Silver, Copper, lead and Coals... To have and To hold... in the... proportion as follows... unto the said William Eldridge the lot number one hundred and ten, containing six acres... number three hundred and twenty seven containing eight acres, and the lot number three hundred and twenty eight containing seven acres... Paying... unto our Receiver General... at the feast of Saint Michael in every year at the rate of two shillings for every hundred acres... upon condition that... within three years after the date hereof, for every fifty acres of plantable land hereby granted, clear and work three acres at least... and keep upon every fifty acres... three neat cattle... and... shall be obliged to erect... one good dwelling house to be at least twenty feet in length and sixteen feet in breadth...
Given under the Great Seal of our Province of New Brunswick witness our trusty and well beloved Thomas Carleton Esquire, our lieutenant Governor and Commander in Chief of our said Province at Fredericton the ninth day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven, and in the twenty eighth year of our Reign.
By command of His Excellency in Council Jon. Odell"(8)
On 7 July 1794 William signed a petition stating that he served as a private in DeLancey's Regiment and that he "sat down on a spot of land" close by the town of Beaver Harbor ten years prior. He requested that the government grant him that piece of land which was about 50 acres.(9)
"To his honnor Major General Sir Thomas Saumery President of the Province of New Brunswick and Commander in Chief of the Same.
The Memorial of William Eldridge and Samuel Buckman Junior of the Parish of Pennfield and County of Charlotte... That your Memorialists prays for a Track of Land in the Said parish laying on the West Side of Camp crick and on the South of Land Granted to Samuel Buckman from his Sow wist Corner to the Nor west Corner of the Town Plott Supposed to Contain five Hundred Acres it is the wish of your Memorialists that William Eldridge should have three Hundred acres of the East part of Said Land and the Remainder on the West to Samuel Buckman the part applied for by Said Eldridge has been under improvement by him Twenty years.
Your Memorialists further Saith that they ( ) Settled in the Said parish and have never drawn any Land from Government... Samuel Buckman, William Eldridge" 1 Jan. 1814.(10)
"New Brunswick, George the Third by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, King... Know Ye that We... have given and granted... unto John Munro, William Eldridge and Samuel Bucknam Junior... several... lots... containing in the whole six hundred and fifty acres... unto the said William Eldridge, Lot number two containing two hundred and thirty acres... on the North side of Beaver Harbor... Witness our trusty and well beloved George Stracey Smyth, Esquire, President and Commander in Chief of our said Province, at Fredericton, the thirtieth day of January in the Year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifteen."(11)
"Account of the assessment of Tax Levied on the inhabetance of the Parish of Pennfield for the Present Year... 1820... William Eldridge 9/6..."(12) In 1821 he was taxed 8/8.(13)
"A valuation of Property of those Persons who are Lyable to be taxed in the Parish of Pennfield for the Present year 1820... Wm Eldridge 12 acres of Land, 2 oxen, 4 cows, 12 sheep..."(14) In 1821 William had one less cow and had added a horse.(15) In 1822 the inventory for his assessment for the poor tax amounted to L200. His assessment was thirteenth out of 112 total households.(16)
On 21 Nov. 1829 William deeded to the parish of St. George a piece of land "granted to him in 1815". He sold it for 1/ with ¼ acre to be used for a "school for the education of youth in Beaver Harbour".(17)
"Tradition states that William had a brother Barnabas who landed in Pubnico, NS and that the Yarmouth area Eldridges are his descendants."
Issue of William Eldridge Sr. & Sarah Bean/Behn:
I. Joseph ELDRIDGE, born ca1776, married ca1803 Elizabeth H GUPTILL, and died between 1821 & 1830.
II. William ELDRIDGE, born ca1778, married ca1813 Sarah JUSTASON, and died ca1844.
III. Elizabeth ELDRIDGE, born ca1801, married July 6, 1820 William DICKSON.
IV. John ELDRIDGE, born ca1804, bpt. 1811, married1 Jan 15, 1833 Priscilla TRYNOR, married2 Margaret Elizabeth McKAY, died 1850.
V. Rosalind ELDRIDGE, bpt. 1811.
VI. Sarah ELDRIDGE, born 1807, married Dec. 13, 1827 Roger TRYNOR.
(1) The Loyalists of New Brunswick- Esther Clark Wright, Lancelot Press,
(2) British Military & Naval Records- Canadian Archives, RG 8, I, Vol.1880, p.2; also Ward Chipman Papers, Series I, Vol.25, p.42 film No. C-9818
(3) Ibid- p.8
(4) Ibid- pp.15,18,23
(5) Ibid- pp.31,33
(6) Ibid- pp.43,45,56,60,68,71,81; Vol.1881, pp.5,13,22, 32,41
(7) Ibid- Vol.1879, p.51
(8) New Brunswick Land Grants- Book B, pp.240-8, grant No.134
(9) Eldridge Genealogy- NB Archives files, film No.F11082
(10) Land Petitions- NB Archives, film F-4176, 1814
(11) New Brunswick Land Grants- Vol. Rol., grant No.744
(12) Loyalists to Canada- Theodore Holmes, Picton Press, 1993, p.247
(13) Ibid- p.252
(14) Ibid- p.244
(15) Ibid- p.250
(16) Ibid- p.53
(17) Charlotte Co. Deeds- Book K, p.85, No.89
;Charlotte Co. Marriage Registers- NB Archives, film No.F137