Had David Dayton chosen to be evasive?

Did David Dayton choose to be evasive in order to remain close to his family and farm?

David appears on the 1775 Town of Brookhaven Tax List, yet we cannot find him on either side of the “Association.” In early 1776, when many Loyalists on Long Island were blacklisted and being hunted down, David appears in Justus Roe’s July 1776 Census, near Patchogue. The following month, Long Island came under control of the British army and
David signed the Oath of Allegiance to the king, as did men on both sides. The Culper Spy Ring was already active in 1778, a year before the last known record of David still living.

So how did David die in his mid-40s? How was Anne able to provide proof that David had died? The British government in NYC granted her a Letter of Administration in June of 1782.

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