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Lynah family history

Home > Family Tree > Dr James Lynah 1 > Revolution > Second 2

On February 26, 1782, the South Carolina State Legislature met at Jacksonburgh and passed what is called the Confiscation Act. This act was to confiscate the estates of certain people who had befriended or aided the British during the occupation of Charleston and to banish them from the state forever. Should they return they were to suffer the penalty of death without the benefit of clergy. Attached to the act was a list of names,(1) divided into six catagories. The fifth catagory being those who had been commissioned either civil or military, by the British. Prominent on this list was Dr. James Lynah.(2)

On the 14th of December 1782, 3,794 civilians including many British who had come before or during the war and a much larger number of Loyalists(3) who, for their virtue or vices, refused to desert the British flag, left Charleston on the British fleet. This was nearly one-half of the white population of Charleston. It was a scene of grief and joy. Many of the Tories, permanently bereft, so far as they knew, of every possession, were men and women of culture and character. They were leaving forever their homes under the stern compulsion of duty. Those who followed the American Army into Charleston were joyful to return to their homes, but saddened by the grief and ruin they witnessed.(4)

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(1) Royal Gazette Mar. 20 and July 13, 1782.

(2) Those whose names were on the list, promptly headed for the nearest tavern to determine their future course of action and no doubt to booster their spirits, spiritually in the usual Charleston manner. (Notice of the meeting at the Tavern was printed in the Royal Gazette following the publication of the list.)

(3) It is quite possible that Dr. Lynah's two sons were among these. We know that son James left around this time--never to return, and in the City Gazette of Nov. 3, that Edward, son of James Lynah, arrived from N. Y. (1786)

(4) D. D. Wallace: A Short History of S. C.