Monday, June 22, 2015

Memory Mondays: Private Walter Storey

Private Walter Storey
By Sandra Sales

Very little is available about Walter Storey. He was 29 at beginning of war of 1812. He was born in Ireland about 1783, moved to Pennsylvania in 1800 and then to Upper Canada in 1809 with his extended family, settling in the Talbot Settlement on Lake Erie. He farmed and remained single. He died 12 February 1831, and was buried in St. Peter’s Cemetery, Dunwich Township.

During the War of 1812 he served under:  Captain Leslie Patterson (Walter’s uncle) 1812, 1813, 1814; Captain David Secord 1812; and Captain Gilman Willson 1814. He was entitled to Land Claim Certificate Unit – Flank Company 1st Regiment Middlesex Militia, Vol 24, File 81, pages 381-382.
It is documented that Walter saw action as a member of the militia when it was called out to repel a raid on 20th May, 1814.  Because the Talbot Settlement was raided 6 times between November 1813 and November 1814, Walter was probably called out numerous times.

It is also documented that he and his mother, Mary (Patterson) Storey, were victims of the Indians and American Raid on Port Talbot on August 16, 1814. He was recorded as living at the northwest end and southwest half of lot 11, concession 10 Dunwich Township. His mother was a “widow” and “elderly”, living on part of lot 11, concession 10 Dunwich. After this August raid, led by Captain Walker, Walter and his mother claimed the loss of an ox, bed clothing, men’s clothing, shirts, new linen, women’s clothing, and household furniture.

The lot on which Walter and his mother lived was granted to Mary Storey in 1808. Sometime after the War of 1812 she donated 10 acres of her land for a church and burial ground. In the autumn of 1827 the Port Talbot community came together to frame, shingle, and furnish St. Peter’s Anglican Church. Col. Patterson, her brother, went by boat to Buffalo to purchase the glass for the windows as well as the lead and oil for the paint and the putty. The extended Patterson family (the Pearces, Storeys and Backuses) each pledged 70 pounds to the project. The church contains a window representing Christ knocking at the door, with the inscription: “In Memory of Mary Storey, grandparent, donor of St Peter’s glebe lands, and Stephen and Ann Backus, father and mother, who with two or three other families erected St Peter’s Church in 1827.” Many members of the extended family are buried there.

Thank you to Sandra Sales for her research and work in honouring our War of 1812 veterans.

Through the War of 1812 Graveside Project, Private Walter Storey and others will be remembered with a ceremony in St. Peter's Anglican Church Cemetery on Sunday, July 12 at 1pm during Backus-Page House Museum's Living History Weekend July 11-12, 2015

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