St. Alban the Martyr

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Memorial Tiles: Capt. Daniel Servos

SERVOS, Capt. Daniel: 1742 - 1803

Tile ordered and paid for by E.G. Kirby*, Lethbridge, Alberta, December 1888

Daniel Servos, the son of Thomas Servos, was born in New York. The early Servos family, of Hungarian origin, had found refuge in Germany in the mid-seventeenth century, escaping the persecution of Protestants in the Austro-Hungarian Empire at the time. Daniel’s grandfather, Christopher Servos, was born about 1670 in Wied-on-the-Rhine. He took up the military profession and received an honourable discharge after forty years of military service and emigrated to America with his family of six grown children and a letter of introduction to the governor of New York.(1)

The Servos family prospered in America. Christopher’s sons were intelligent and energetic; they cleared several farms, and built grist mills and sawmills. They served in the Provincial Militia of Sir William Johnson and Colonel John Butler in the French War which ended in 1763 with victory for Britain and the addition of French Canada to British colonial territory.

In 1778, during the American Revolution, Daniel’s father, Thomas, was living quietly at home in Scoharie, New York when a rebel party entered his home. Refusing to swear allegiance to the revolutionary cause, he was shot and his home was plundered. Thomas’ wife Clara, Daniel’s wife, Elizabeth Johnson , and his three-year-old daughter Magdalena, who all witnessed the event, were unharmed but left destitute.(2) Thomas’ four sons became active in military service throughout the war, making their way to Niagara in 1779 to join Butler’s Rangers. Daniel was commissioned a captain and two of his brothers were privates. When the Revolution ended, at least 285 men of Butler’s Rangers took up land in the Niagara area. By the order of the peace treaty of 1783, the Servos family should have received compensation for their lost farms in America but when Daniel travelled from Canada to make a case on behalf of the family, he found that nothing was recoverable.

Daniel Servos married Elizabeth Johnson (1747-1821). He brought their daughter, Magdalena, who had been cared for by her maternal grandparents, back to Canada with him. Magdalena later married John Whitmore (Tile # 46). Magdalena and John Whitmore’s daughter Eliza Whitmore married William Kirby (*the surname of the sponsor of this tile) a poet, novelist and historian of renown and author of a book entitled The Servos Family.

Daniel and two brothers received land grants and settled in the Niagara District. Daniel built a house and mill at Four Mile Creek and the family again prospered in their new home. Another brother settled at Long Sault near Cornwall. Several of the next generation of Servos men fought with the Lincoln Militia in defense of Canada in the War of 1812.

Daniel Servos died on March 26, 1803, at the age of sixty-five. His monument is found in the Servos Family Burial Ground at Niagara, located on the farm of Mrs. Mary Servos. Daniel’s mother-in-law, Elizabeth Johnson, his wife, Elizabeth Johnson Servos, and his daughter, Magdalena, wife of John Whitmore are also buried there.(3)


1. William Kirby, The Servos Family (republished by Lundy’s Lane Historical Society), via

2. Loyalist Collection at the University of New Brunswick, via

3. Janet Carmochan, Graves and Inscriptions in the Niagara Peninsula.