"The name United Empire Loyalists is an honorific given after the fact to those American Loyalists who resettled in British North America and other British Colonies as an act of fealty to King George III after the British defeat in the American Revolutionary War and prior to the Treaty of Paris." (Wikipedia) United Empire Loyalists
May we always remember that these brave men and women, were Loyal Colonial American Citizens, that chose to obey the Law of the King of England. Referred to in American History books as ="Tories, Belligerents and King
These were the Men and their families - the Fathers,Mothers, Sons, Daughters, Sisters, Brothers, Aunts and Uncles who fought for a cause they believed in, even though they knew the consequence would be to lose everything and be forced to flee to a foreign land and start over.
This War affected all manner of mankind in the Geographic Region of early North America and also Europe. (see links listed below)
Many of these men were Palatinate Germanic Emigrants who settled in New York and other Eastern Seaboard States.
Negro Soldiers, during this War served on both sides of the War. Siding with the British meant a possible chance to become a Freeman, African Americans and Native American Indians were also affected by this War.
This War and the strong beliefs on each side of it, caused some Surname changes.
After the War, many of these men fled to modern day Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick to seek refuge from persecution and prejudice. ( http://genealogical-gleanings.com/Loyalists.htm ). Some were granted land in St. Elizabeth, Jamaica, in 1783. ( http://jamaicanfamilysearch.com/Samples2/Americanloyalists.htm ).
Note: Being a proven Loyalist descendant confers no special status in Canadian or other society, but many members use the post-nominal letters "UE" after their name, in consequence of Lord Dorchester's Order in Council in 1789, conferring recognition of the service of the Loyalists in defense of "The Unity of Empire."
However, being a Descendant from these Brave men and women brings a special sense of pride.
Further Links and References
early Loyalist settlers of Cumberland County, Nova Scotia [http://www.ccgsns.com/local-resources/news-articles-2/cumberland-county-news-articles/]