Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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ROBINSON, Beverly, soldier, born in Virginia in 1723: died in Thornbury, England, in 1792. He was the son of John Robinson, president of the council of Virginia in 1734, and afterward speaker of the house of burgesses. The son served under Wolfe as a major at the storming of Quebec in 1759, and became wealthy by his marriage with Susanna, daughter of Frederick Phillipse. Though he opposed the measures that led to the separation of the colonies from the mother-country, he joined the loyalists when independence was declared, removed to New York, and raised the Loyal American regiment, of which he was colonel, also commanding the corps called the guards and pioneers. Colonel Robinson was also employed to conduct several matters of importance on behalf of the royalists, and figured conspicuously in cases of defection from the Whig cause. He opened a correspondence with the Whig leaders of Vermont relative to their return to their allegiance, and was concerned in Arnold's treason. His country mansion was Arnold's headquarters while the latter was arranging his plan. (See illustration on page 95, vol. i.) After the trial and conviction of Andre, Colonel Robinson, as a witness, accompanied the commissioners that were sent by Sir Henry Clinton to Washington's headquarters to plead with him for Andre's life. Colonel Robinson had previously addressed Washington on the subject of Andre's release, and in his letter reminded him of their former friendship. At the termination of the war he went to New Brunswick, and was a member of the first council of that colony, but did not take his seat. He subsequently went to England with part of his family, and resided in retirement at Thornbury, near Bath, till his death. His wife was included in the confiscation act of New York, and the whole of the estate that was derived from her father passed from the family. As a compensation for this loss the British government granted her husband the sum of £17,000 sterling. She died at Thornbury in 1822, aged ninety-four years.--Their son, Beverly, born in New York state about 1755; died in New York city in 1816, was graduated at Columbia in 1773, and at the beginning of the Revolution was a student of law in the office of James Duane. He was a lieutenant-colonel in the Loyal American regiment, and at the evacuation of New York was placed at the head of a large number of loyalists, who embarked for Nova Scotia. He afterward went to New Brunswick, and resided principally at and near the city of St. John, receiving half-pay as an officer of the crown. He was a member of the council of New Brunswick, and on the occurrence of the war between Great Britain and France, was given command of a regiment that had been raised in the colony. Colonel Robinson did much to advance the interests of the city of St. John. He died while on a visit to two of his sons that remained residents of New York city.--Another son of the first Beverly, Morris, born in the Highlands of New York in 1759; died at Gibraltar in 1815, served as a captain in the queen's rangers during the war of the Revolution, and after the restoration of peace was continued in commission. At the time of his death he was a lieutenant-colonel and assistant barrack-master-general in the British army.--Another son, John, born in New York state in 1761; died in St. John, New Brunswick, in 1828, was a lieutenant in the Loyal American regiment during the Revolution, and when the corps was disbanded he settled in New Brunswick and received half-pay, tie became a successful merchant, was deputy paymaster-general of the king's forces in the colony, a member of the council, treasurer of New Brunswick, mayor of St. John, and president of the first bank that was chartered in that city and in the colony.--Another son, Sir Frederick Phillipse, soldier, born in the Highlands of New York in September, 1763; died in Brighton, England, 1 January, 1852, was attached to his father's regiment, and in February, 1777, was commissioned an ensign. He was wounded and taken prisoner at the battle of Stony Point, but was exchanged, and left this country. He was promoted to the rank of captain in 1794, served in the West Indies under Sir Charles Gore, and was present at the siege of Fort Bourbon in the island of Martinique. In 1795 he returned to England, and in 1812 he served as brigadier-general in the peninsula. After the termination of the peninsular war he went to Canada as commander-in-chief of the troops in the upper province. He commanded the British force in the attack on Plattsburg under General Prevost, and protested against the order of his superior officer when he was directed to retire. From 1 July, 1815, till 1816, he administered the government of Upper Canada during the absence of Francis Gore. He soon afterward removed to the West Indies, where he took Command of the forces, He became a lieutenant-general in 1825, and in 1841 was promoted to the full rank of general. On 2 January, 1815, he was made a knight commander of the Bath, and in 1835 he became a knight grand cross of that order.--Another son, Sir William Henry, born in the Highlands of New York in 1766 died in Bath, England, in 1836, accompanied his father to England, was appointed to a place in the commissariat department of the British army, and was its head at the time of his death. He was knighted for his long services. His wife, Catherine, daughter of Cortlandt Skinner, attorney-general of New Jersey, died at Wisthorpe House, Marlow, England, in 1843.
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