An American Family History

Munsell Family

  also spelled Munsal, Munsel, Munsall, Munsal  
  1797 census of Elizabethtown: Mary Munsal  

Moses Munsell was born about 1751.

His wife was named Abigail.

Moses was killed in 1777 while escaping the British Lines.

Their children may have included:

Benjamin Ruggles Munsell (1771, married Eleanor Avery),
Deliverance Munsell (married James Avery),
Sarah Munsell (1775, married Peter Howard),
Mary Munsell (1777, married Jonathan Mills Church)

After Moses died his wife married Samuel Wright.


from the Dictionary of Canadian Biography

Howard, Peter farmer, businessman, politician, jp, office holder, and doctor; b. c. 1771 in the American colonies, probably New York, fourth son of Matthew Howard;

m. first Sarah Munsel (Munsall), and they had three sons and two daughters;

m. secondly 17 Oct. 1833 Margaret [McCready] Seaman, a widow [of Nehemiah Seaman], and they had no children;

d. 24 Nov. 1843 in Brockville, Upper Canada.

Peter Howard’s father [Matthew Howard] was a farmer living in Pittstown, N.Y., when the American revolution broke out. Taking up arms with the British in 1777, he served with several loyalist corps, was employed as a spy, and was captured several times.

After the war he settled in western Quebec with his family. In 1791 Peter petitioned the government for land as the son of a loyalist and was granted 200 acres. He owned property in several townships in the newly formed province of Upper Canada but made his residence in Elizabethtown Township, where his father and other family members lived.


from A Cyclopedia of Canadian Biography: Being Chiefly Men of the Time ..., Volume 1 edited by George Maclean Rose

. . .Colonel Benjamin Church, distinguished himself in the French and Indian wars in which the New England colonists were engaged, having commanded the volunteer army, which, in a protracted kind of guerilla warfare, defeated and afterwards killed the celebrated Indian King, Philip, who had given so much trouble and alarm to the early settlers.

At the breaking out of the revolutionary war, the Church family, respectable both in numbers and position, being Whigs, espoused the Republican cause, except two, who took up arms to defend the royal prerogative. One of these was killed in battle, and the other, Jonathan Mills Church, was taken prisoner in 1777, by the American army, from whose custody he escaped and came to Canada, and ultimately settled in the neighborhood of Brockville.

He took an active part in defending Canada during the war of 1812-13-14. and died at a very advanced age in 1846


Benjamin Ruggles Munsell was born about 1771.

He married Eleanor Avery.

Their children may have included:

Polly Munsell (married Benogar Kelly),
Abigail Munsell (married Harvey Plumb),
Henry Munsell (married Mary Andrews),
Eleanor Munsell (married Milo Hotchkiss),
Charlotte Munsell (married John Gilleland),
Sarah Munsell (1797, married James Bates), and
Alpheus Munsell (1802, married Mary Gardiner).

Benjamin died on March 8, 1836 at age 63 near Mallorytown, Leeds County, Ontario.


from A Record of Marriages Solemnized by William Smart

1817 Dec. 23rd.-Hervey Plum and Abbigal Munsell, both of Yonge, banns, witnesses J. Munsell, Augustus Plum.

1824 Feb. 9th.—Henry Munsell and Mary Andrews, both of Yonge, banns, wit. Hiram Landon, Jacob Homestead (Olmstead ?).


Alpheus Munsell and Mary Ann Gardnier. She was the daughter of John Gardiner and Lucy Lamb

Brittania Munsell (1826 ),
John G. Munsell (1828, married Amelia Elizabeth Buell),
Sarah A. Munsell (1830 ),
Moses T. Munsell (1832 ),
Benjamin Ruggles Munsell (1834, married Jane Ann Soper),
Peter H. Munsell (1836 ),
Isaac L. Munsell (1839 ),
Lucina Munsell (1841),
Eleanor Munsell (1844),
Harriet A. Munsell (1847)
Julia A. Munsell (1850).

Alpheus and John Munsell appeared on the census lists of Yonge Township, Leeds County Ontario in the 1840s.


The Battle of the Windmill was in November, 1838. Loyalists defeated an invasion attempt by Hunter Patriots, led by  Nils von Schoultz, who were attempting to overthrow British rule. The battle was at a windmill two miles east of Prescott.