Ceremony at Cummer Burial Ground
June 11, 2000
On behalf of the descendants of Martin Snider U.E., I would like to
thank the Toronto Branch of the United Empire Loyalist Association of
Canada, for the gift of the Loyalist rose bush, and for the plaque which
has been placed beside Martinís gravestone.
I think I can speak for all the family members who, down through the
years, have delved into the story of this Loyalist family. We have been
captured by the drama, courage and tenacity of the Snider brothers who,
determined to remain loyal to the British Crown, risked their lives to
do so. And Martin has become like an old friend as weíve traced his
life from Pennsylvania to New Brunswick and then to York.
When Martin left his homestead in New Brunswick and brought his
family here in 1811, he was about 63 years old. His wife Sarah was only
42 and bore him 11 children in all. When he died in 1828, Martin was 80
years old; Sarah was 100 years old at the time of her death in 1869.
Martin and his eldest son Jacob were active in the early life of
York, and their names appear in the York, Upper Canada Minutes of Town
Meetings and Lists of Inhabitants from 1812 to 1823, as Overseers of
Highways, along with Jacob Cummer, later to become the father-in-law of
Martinís son William, who married Nancy Cummer.
Following their fatherís example as defenders of their country,
both Jacob and Thomas served in the Militia. Jacob was severely wounded
at Lundyís Lane in 1814 and Thomas was a Lieutenant with the York
Militia at the time of his death in 1856. During the War of 1812, young
Martin helped his brother Jacob procure much-needed supplies for the
British military forces.
Sarah and Martinís son George was elected in 1867 to the
first House of Parliament in Ottawa, representing North Grey, Ontario.
Loyalist pioneers Martin and Sarah Snider are very special to us,
both as our ancestors, and as symbols of courage and determination in
the face of hardship.
On June 26, it will be 172 years since Martinís death, and this
ceremony today is a fitting celebration of his life. Thank you.
Patricia Snider Armstrong
Sunday, June 11, 2000