I have Canadian roots in 1850-1869 area of Kingston Ontario Canada, and I amOLIVE TREE GENEALOGY ANSWER: Jim - to be a Loyalist a person had to meet certain criteria including:
wondering if they were survivors on a coffin ship, (mine were on the ill
fated Hannah that struck a ice reef and sank) and they have lived in the
Brewers Mills area of Rideau Canal. MY question is "did they have to become
loyalists" when they got off the ship? Seeing they were catholic, survived
the "Potatoe Famine" and more than likely hated England? Being a loyalist
did they have a better time of it in Canada than the regular people that
* Reside in the American Colonies before the American Revolution
* Joined the British Forces before 1783
* Suffered loss of property, goods or life
As you can see, your man did not fit any of these. Besides, no individual "had" to become a Loyalist. A loyalist was someone living in the American Colonies who remained loyal to the King of England and did not participate in the Rebellion on the American side.
If what you are really asking is "Did he have to become a citizen of Canada" the answer is - Canada was not "Canada" at that time. It was still a British colony until 1867.