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Local historical fiction author Elaine Cougler will host a book launch on Nov. 20 at the Quality Hotel and Suites

By Heather Rivers, Woodstock Sentinel-Review

Woodstock author Elaine Cougler will be featuring her latest  book, The Loyalist Legacy, the third in her Loyalist trilogy at a book launch on Sunday, November 20. (HEATHER RIVERS, Sentinel-Review)

Woodstock author Elaine Cougler will be featuring her latest book, The Loyalist Legacy, the third in her Loyalist trilogy at a book launch on Sunday, November 20. (HEATHER RIVERS, Sentinel-Review)

WOODSTOCK – Woodstock author of historical fiction Elaine Cougler will be hosting a book launch Nov. 20 for her latest work The Loyalist Legacy, which is based on local history following the War of 1812.

The third book in trilogy exploring the world of Ontario loyalists to the Crown, The Loyalist Legacy follows the family of United Empire loyalists as they recover from wartime catastrophes.

“The loyalists were the first refugees to move to Ontario,” explained Elaine Cougler, a former high school teacher who is also the author of The Loyalist’s Wife and The Loyalist’s Luck.

The newest book’s main characters William and Catherine Garner, are in fact named after Cougler’s great, great grandparents who settled in Nissouri on a 200-acre plot of land north of Thorndale, on what is now known as Plover Mills Road.

“I think that is why it’s really exciting for people in this area, because the story has moved to our area,” Cougler said. “It’s a story of what was going on in our part of Ontario 200 years ago — it’s pretty compelling stuff.”

Centreville, a hamlet located between Ingersoll and Beachville, is also a notably featured in the novel as meeting place for local rebels.

“At the time it was much bigger than Ingersoll or Woodstock,” Cougler said.

Based on what was happening during the time period of 1817 to 1838, the couple faced numerous challenges including wild animals, displaced Natives, pesky neighbours, uncleared land and roads, as well as unstable politics.

“It was not a democracy, and ordinary people like you and me didn’t have a say,” Cougler explained. “And the Family Compact created a lot of ill will. It all leads up to the rebellion of 1837.”

Plots of land reserved only for Anglican clergy also meant a different form of hardship for the local Methodists living in Nissouri who sometimes had to wait years for a Methodist minister who could marry them.

“A lot of people pseudo-married,” Cougler said. “They weren’t married according to church and government.”

And since the plots for Anglican clergy remained vacant, no one was available to care for the roads in front of them.

“People living there had terrible conditions,” she said. “It took years before they got the roads in some sort of condition they could use.”

Cougler said she is particularly interested in the history of the loyalists during that time period.

“It’s interesting to me because it is my own family history,” she said.

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IF YOU GO

Who: Everyone is welcome at a book launch for The Loyalist Legacy

Where: Quality Hotel and Suites

When: Sunday, Nov. 20, 1:30 to 4 p.m.

The book is also available at Merrifield Book Shop and on Amazon. Visit elainecougler.com for more information.

hrivers@postmedia.com

 

 

 

For Immediate Release

News Release

No Canada Day?

Our big event might not have happened if not for the Loyalists, says author

WOODSTOCK, ON (June 21, 2016) – Canada Day celebrations might be quite different or not exist at all if not for the Loyalists, says Elaine Cougler, a Canadian author who’s researched the Loyalist period for her works of historical fiction.

During the American Revolutionary War, many settlers in the Thirteen Colonies paid a steep price for their loyalty to Britain.

After the American victory, these Loyalists were forced to leave their homes and flee to British lands to the north.

About 100,000 Loyalists left the Thirteen Colonies. Half settled on land that is present-day Canada.

“While Americans mark July 4th as their Independence Day, it also marks the beginning of English Canada and our multicultural heritage. Loyalists were of many nationalities besides British including German, French Huguenots, Irish, Dutch and former slaves,” Cougler says.

Cougler captures the Loyalists’ plight in The Loyalist’s Wife as Canada’s first refugees struggle to escape America and shape a new Canada with their English traditions merging with those of the existing French-speaking population.

“If not for these refugees, all of Canada might be French-speaking and our laws defined by the French Civil Code instead of English Common Law,” Cougler says.

“Today we are proudly multicultural with two official languages and a tradition of welcoming people of all nations, skin colours and religions to be themselves. To a large degree, I believe that Canadian mindset was founded with the Loyalists.”

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Elaine Cougler lives in Woodstock, Ontario and writes historical novels about inhabitants of the Thirteen Colonies who remained loyal to Britain during the American Revolution. Her books are: The Loyalist’s Wife, The Loyalist’s Luck and, to be released later in 2016, The Loyalist Legacy.

For Elaine Cougler’s biography, Top 10 Facts about the Loyalists and to arrange an interview, please contact: Elaine Cougler at: Ph: 519 532 4870; Email: elainecougler@rogers.com

Website: www.elainecougler.com

For Immediate Release

News Release

July 4th: Why Should Canadians Care?

WOODSTOCK, ON (June 21, 2016) –Americans celebrate their nation’s birth on July 4th but for Canadians the independence of our southern neighbours directly shaped our country when 50,000 Loyalists fled the US and settled in Canada.

Eighty percent landed in our eastern provinces and the rest came to Kingston and Niagara, says Elaine Cougler, a Canadian author who has researched the Loyalist period for her works of fiction. They came to a French and Native land and immediately balanced more closely our French and English speaking population.

One reason the Americans cast their eyes northward in the revolution and the War of 1812 was for land, a much-needed commodity. Had the Americans not broken from Britain we might still have a government formed under the French Civil Code instead of English Common Law.

Of Loyalist descent herself, Cougler has drawn heroes in The Loyalist’s Wife and the rest of her trilogy who struggle to survive as they escape north and shape a new Canada. Perhaps their diverse backgrounds and those of their First Nations neighbours actually began Canada’s worldwide reputation for tolerance and multiculturalism, echoed by our neighbours to the south with their iconic Statue of Liberty welcoming immigrants.

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Elaine Cougler lives in Woodstock, Ontario and writes historical novels about inhabitants of the Thirteen Colonies who remained loyal to Britain during the American Revolution. Her books are: The Loyalist’s Wife, The Loyalist’s Luck and, to be released later in 2016, The Loyalist Legacy.

For Elaine Cougler’s biography, Top 10 Facts about the Loyalists and to arrange an interview, please contact: Elaine Cougler at: Ph: 519 532 4870; Email: elainecougler@rogers.com

Website: www.elainecougler.com

 

 

 

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