As I have tons of information about Gregor.
Gregor MacGregor was a Scottish soldier, adventurer, land speculator, and colonizer who fought in the South American struggle for independence. Upon his return to England in 1820, he claimed to be cacique of Poyais.
MacGregor was born in the family house of Glengyle in Stirlingshire, Scotland on Christmas Eve in 1786. His parents were Daniel MacGregor, a sea captain with the East India Company, and Ann Austin, a doctor's daughter. Little is known of MacGregor's early life, but apparently he had at least one sister.
In 1803, at the age of 16, he joined the British Army, 57th foot. By 1804 he had risen to the rank of lieutenant, an unusually rapid progression in the ranks. He married Maria Bowater, an admiral's daughter, in June 1805, and Maria MacGregor then set up house in London while MacGregor spent much of his time in Gibraltar, where the 57th Foot was in training.
Not until July 1809 was MacGregor's regiment sent to Portugal, as reinforcements for the Duke of Wellington's second peninsular campaign to drive the French out of Spain. Accounts of MacGregor's service in this campaign vary, but it is known that for a time he was seconded to the Portuguese army with the rank of major, and that he sold out of the British Army in May 1810, possibly because of disagreements with his superior officers. MacGregor and his wife then went to Edinburgh, where he assumed the title of "Colonel", but by 1811 they were in London and MacGregor was styling himself Sir Gregor MacGregor, while claiming falsely to have succeeded to the chieftainship of the clan MacGregor.
In December 1811, Maria MacGregor died. By this time, MacGregor had heard about the independence movements in South America and the Captaincy General of Venezuela in particular. He sold his small Scottish estate and sailed for South America, arriving in Caracas in the spring of 1812. He talked General Francisco de Miranda, the Commander in Chief of the new Venezuelan Republic's army, into appointing him a colonel in the army, and almost immediately he was involved in a series of skirmishes that resulted in his promotion to brigadier-general. A month or so later, when General Miranda was captured and handed over to the royalist forces by Simon Bolívar, MacGregor fled to Curaçao on a British brig with his new wife.
During his brief stay in Caracas, MacGregor had met Josefa Antonia Andrea Aristeguieta y Lovera, the daughter of a prominent local family and a cousin of Simon Bolívar. They were married on 10 June 1812. They eventually had three children, Gregorio (b. ca. 1817), Constantino, (b. ca. 1819) and Josefa Anna Gregoria (b. ca. 1821), and their marriage endured twenty-six years, until Josefa's death in 1838.
From Curaçao, MacGregor decided to go to New Granada (present-day Colombia) and join the liberation forces of General Antonio Nariño. For Josefa's safety, he first took her to the British island of Jamaica and then sailed for Cartagena on the northern coast of New Granada. From there he made his way south to Tunja, where General Nariño put him in command of the military district of Socorro, near the Venezuelan border. During the year or so he spent here, he earned what became a lifelong reputation as an unreliable braggart. One local official wrote of him: "I am sick and tired of this bluffer, or Quixote, or the devil knows what. This man can hardly serve us in New Granada without heaping ten thousand embarassments upon us."
In 1814, the Spanish royalist forces routed General Nariño's army and MacGregor took refuge in Cartagena, where he played a role in organizing the city's defenses. In August 1815, the Spanish troops attacked the city and began a siege that lasted until December, when disease and starvation forced the city to surrender. On the night of 5 December, MacGregor helped to organize a mass escape aboard gunboats that blasted their way through the Spanish blockade and sailed for Jamaica.
In Jamaica, MacGregor was treated as a hero, but by the spring of 1816 he had moved on with Josefa to the neighboring island of Haiti, where Simon Bolívar was raising a new army. In April, MacGregor sailed with Bolívar as a brigadier-general to Venezuela, landing on the island of Margarita before crossing to Carupano on the mainland. Both Bolívar and MacGregor ran into trouble after their forces split up, and MacGregor's troops were eventually forced to retreat towards the town of Barcelona, fighting all the way. This difficult, month-long campaign earned MacGregor deserved acclaim and is probably the high point of his military adventures, which were otherwise marred by varying amounts of error, incompetency, and exaggeration on his part.
MacGregor claimed to be commissioned by representatives of the revolting South American countries to liberate Florida from Spanish rule. Financed by American backers, he led an army of only 150 men including recruits from Charleston and Savannah, some War of 1812 veterans, and 55 musketeers in an assault on Fort San Carlos at Fernandina on Amelia Island. Through spies within the Spanish garrison, MacGregor had learned that the force there consisted of only 55 regulars and 50 militia men. He spread rumors in the town which eventually reached the ear of the garrison commander that an army of more than 1,000 men was about to attack. On 29 June 1817, he advanced on the fort, deploying his men in small groups coming from various directions to give the impression of a larger force. The commander, Francisco Morales, struck the Spanish flag and fled. MacGregor raised his flag, the “Green Cross of Florida", a green cross on a white ground, over the fort and proclaimed the “Republic of the Floridas”.
Amelia Island Medal 1817
Now in possession of the town, and seeing the need to make the appearance of a legitimate government, MacGregor quickly got a committee together to draft a constitution, and appointed Ruggles Hubbard, the former high sheriff of New York City, as unofficial civil governor, and Jared Irwin, an adventurer and former Pennsylvania Congressman, as his treasurer. MacGregor then opened a post office, started a newspaper and issued currency to pay his troops and to settle government debts.  Expecting reinforcements for a raid against the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, MacGregor intended to subdue all of Spanish East Florida. His plan was doomed to fail, however, as President James Monroe was in sensitive negotiations with Spain to acquire all of Florida.
Soon MacGregor's reserves were depleted, and the Republic needed revenue. He commissioned privateers to seize Spanish ships and set up an admiralty court which levied a customs duty on their sales. They began selling captured prizes and their cargoes, which often included slaves. When about 28 August fellow conspirator Ruggles Hubbard sailed into the harbor aboard his own brig Morgiana, flying the flag of Buenos Ayres, but without the needed men, guns, and money, MacGregor announced his departure. On 4 September, faced with the threat of a Spanish reprisal, and still lacking money and adequate reinforcements, he abandoned his plans to conquer Florida and departed Fernandina with most of his officers, leaving a small detachment of men at Fort San Carlos to defend the island. After his withdrawal, these and a force of American irregulars organized by Hubbard and Irwin repelled the Spanish attempt to reassert authority.
Cacique of Poyais
Gregor MacGregor went from Latin America to London, England, in 1820 and announced that he had been created cacique (highest authority or prince) of the Principality of Poyais, an independent nation on the Bay of Honduras. He claimed that native chieftan King George Frederic Augustus I of the Mosquito Shore and Nation had given him the territory of Poyais, 12,500 mile² (32,400 km²) of fertile land with untapped resources, a small number of settlers of British origin, and cooperative natives eager to please. He had created the beginnings of a country with civil service, army and democratic government. Now he needed settlers and investment and had come back to the United Kingdom to give people the opportunity.
At the time, British merchants were all too eager to enter the South American market that Spain had denied to them. The region had already become more promising in the wake of wars of South American independence, when the new governments of Colombia, Chile and Peru had issued bonds in the London Royal Exchange to raise money.
London high society welcomed the colourful figure of MacGregor, and he and his Spanish American wife Josefa Andrea Aristeguieta y Lovera received many invitations. The Lord Mayor of London Christopher Magnay even organized an official reception in London Guildhall. MacGregor claimed descent of clan MacGregor and that Rob Roy MacGregor had been his direct ancestor. He enhanced his allure by telling about his exploits in the Peninsular War and later in the service of Francisco de Miranda, Simón Bolívar and South American independence – tales which were rather embellished.
MacGregor was also introduced to Major William John Richardson and by the winter of 1821 he had made Richardson legate of Poyais. He had also moved to Oak Hall in Richardson's estate in Essex, England, as befit his station as a prince. An office for the Legation of the Territory of Poyais was opened at Dowgate Hill in the City of London. MacGregor enhanced his popularity with elaborate banquets in Oak Hall and invited dignitaries like foreign ambassadors, government ministers and senior military officers.
MacGregor also claimed that one of his ancestors was a rare survivor of the Darien Scheme, a failed Scottish attempt of colonization in Panama in 1690s. In order to compensate for this, he said, he had decided to draw most of the settlers from Scotland. For this purpose, he established offices in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
In Edinburgh, MacGregor began to sell land rights for 3 shillings and 3 pence per acre (£0.16/acre or £40.15/km²). The average worker's weekly wage at the time was about £1, which meant that the price was very generous. The price steadily rose to 4 shillings (£0.20). Many people hoping to make a new start in the new country signed on with their families. On 23 October 1822 MacGregor raised a £200,000 loan on behalf of the Poyais government, in the form of 2,000 bearer bonds worth £100 each.
Also in 1822 MacGregor published a 350-page guidebook entitled Sketch of the Mosquito Shore, including the Territory of Poyais, descriptive of the country, supposedly written by one Captain Thomas Strangeways. It described the Poyais in glowing terms and mainly concentrated on how much profit one could get from the country's ample resources. Poyais was said to be a very anglophilic region with already existing infrastructure, untapped gold and silver mines and large amounts of fertile soil ready to be settled. The region was even free of tropical diseases. The book also claimed that British settlers had founded the capital of Poyais, St Joseph, in the 1730s.
The Legation of Poyais chartered a ship called Honduras Packet, whose crew MacGregor already knew, and five London merchants received contracts to provision the ship with food and ammunition. Its cargo also included a chest full of "Poyais Dollars", Poyaisian currency MacGregor had printed in Scotland. Many of the settlers had changed their pounds to Poyais dollars.
On 10 September 1822 the Honduras Packet departed from the Port of London with 70 would-be-settlers aboard. They included doctors, lawyers and a banker who had been promised appropriate positions in the Poyais civil service. Some had also purchased officer commissions in the Poyaisian army.
On 22 January 1823 another ship, the Kennersley Castle, left Leith Harbour in Scotland for Poyais with 200 would-be-settlers. The ship also carried enough provisions for a year. It arrived in the appropriate place 20 March and spent two days looking for a port. Eventually the newcomers found the settlers who had sailed on the Honduras Packet.
What the settlers had found was an untouched jungle, some natives and a couple of American hermits who had made their homes there. "St Joseph" consisted of only a couple of ruins of a previous attempt at settlement abandoned in the previous century. There was no settlement of any kind. The Honduras Packet had been swept away by a storm.
When some of the labourers began to build rudimentary shelter for themselves, the officers and civil servants decided to try to find a way out. Lieutenant-Colonel Hector Hall, would-be-governor of Poyais, had left to look for the Honduras Packet or another ship to take them back to Britain.
The would-be-settlers began to argue with each other and some of them, who had expected better accommodation, refused to do anything. The Kennersley Castle sailed away. Tropical diseases also began to take their toll. One settler, having used his life savings to gain passage, committed suicide.
In April, the Mexican Eagle, an official ship from British Honduras with the chief magistrate on board, accidentally found the settlers. Chief magistrate Bennet listened to their story and told them that there was no such place as Poyais. He agreed to take them to British Honduras. A couple of days later Colonel Hall returned with King George Frederic and announced that the King had effectively revoked the land grant because MacGregor had assumed sovereignty. The Mexican Eagle took sixty settlers to British Honduras. The other settlers were rescued later.
Many settlers were weakened on their short sea voyage and many of them later died in hospitals in British Honduras; 180 of the 270 would-be settlers had perished during the ordeal.
Edward Codd, Superintendent for Belize, sent a warning to London where naval vessels were sent to call back five ships of would-be-settlers that had departed after the Kennersley Castle. Those survivors who did not decide to settle on the British Honduras or move elsewhere in the Americas sailed on the Ocean on 1 August 1823 to London. More people died during that journey, and fewer than 50 came back alive to Britain.
72 days later the Ocean docked in London. The next day, city papers published the whole story.
However, regardless of the experiences of the survivors, some of them refused to believe that MacGregor would have been the main culprit. One of them, James Hastie, who had lost two of his children to tropical diseases, wrote and published a book Narrative of a Voyage in the Ship Kennersley Castle from Leith Roads to Poyais. He blamed Sir Gregor's advisers and publicists for spreading the false information. A group of survivors signed a declaration of their belief that had Sir Gregor gone with them, things would have turned out differently. Major Richardson sued the papers for libel and defended MacGregor against the charges of fraud.
MacGregor himself, however, had already left for Paris, France, in October.
Poyaisian scheme in France
MacGregor had already contacted the trading organization "Compagnie de la Nouvelle Neustrie" and commissioned it to further the affairs of Poyais in France.
In March 1825 MacGregor summoned from London Gustavus Butler Hippisley, an acquaintance from the army, on the pretext of discussing his appointment as a representative of Poyais in Colombia. Hippisley was to write about the Poyais affair in France in Acts of Oppression Committed under the Administration of m. de Villele, Prime minister of Charles X, in the years 1825-6.
MacGregor claimed to Hippisley that he needed the help of the French government to obtain a formal renunciation of any (in reality nonexistent) claims Spain might have to Poyais and that he had met with French Prime Minister Jean-Baptiste de Villèle. MacGregor and la Nouvelle Noustrie already had plans to send French emigrants to Poyais. Hippisley wrote back to London, castigating the journalists who had called MacGregor a "penniless adventurer".
In August, MacGregor published a new constitution of Poyais; he had changed it into a republic with himself as the head of state. On 18 August 1825 he issued a £300.000 loan with 2.5% interest through the London bank of Thomas Jenkins & Company. The bond was probably never issued. At the same time, la Nouvelle Noustrie recruited settlers with the requirement that they buy FFr100 worth of the company shares.
When French officials noticed that a number of people had obtained passports in order to voyage to a country they had never heard of, they seized the la Nouvelle Neustrie vessel in Le Havre. Some of the would-be-emigrants realized that something was not right and demanded investigation of the affairs of the la Nouvelle Neustrie and Sir Gregor. Hippisley was arrested but MacGregor was nowhere to be found.
Hippisley and MacGregor's secretary Thomas Irving were held in custody in La Force prison when the police investigation was going on. Lehuby, one of the directors of La Nouvelle Noustrie fled to Belgium. MacGregor went into hiding until he was brought into the prison 7 December, two months after the first arrests. He proceeded to comfort his associates and in January 1826 made a proclamation to Central American states – it was written in French and primarily meant to affect French opinion. The accused were later moved to Bicetre prison.
The trial began on 6 April 1826. MacGregor, Hippisley, Irving and Lehuby (in absentia) were accused of fraud by means of the Poyais emigration program. Their lawyer, Merilhou, put the blame on Lehuby and the prosecutor was ready to withdraw the charges if the men were deported from France. Initially the court agreed but judges changed their minds when Belgium agreed to extradite Lehuby. Lawyer Merilhou was later summoned as a witness for the prosecution.
The new trial began on 10 July 1826, and lasted for four days. Merilhou's replacement, Berville, eloquently put the blame on anybody else but MacGregor. MacGregor was acquitted and Hippisley and Irving were released. Lehuby was convicted for 13 months for making false promises.
Lesser Poyais schemes
In 1826 MacGregor returned to London, where the furor over his affairs had died down. Shortly after his arrival he was arrested and taken to Tothill Fields Bridewell prison in Westminster on charges now unknown. He was released in less than a week.
MacGregor proceeded with the modified schemes. This time he claimed that (again, nonexistent) natives had elected him as the head of state and became just "Cacigue of the Republic of Poyais" and opened a new office at 23 Threadneedle Street in the City, without any diplomatic trappings and in much a smaller scale than before. He issued a loan worth £800.000 as 20-year bonds with Thomas Jenkins & Company as brokers. The scheme was announced in the summer 1827.
However, investors were now more careful and somebody circulated a handbill that warned against investing in "Poyais humbug". MacGregor had to pass the most of the unsold certificates to a consortium of speculators for an undisclosed sum. He made only a little money.
Further Poyais schemes were equally successful. In 1828 MacGregor tried to sell land from Poyais at the price of 5 shillings per acre. In 1830 Robert Charles Frederic, brother and successor of King George Frederic, began to offer for sale the same territories to lumber companies. These certificates competed with those of MacGregor. When older investors demanded their interest, he could only pay with more certificates to the value of the interest payments he owed. Others began to use the same trick too – two men named Upton opened a rival "Poyaisian office" and offered land debentures for sale.
In 1831 MacGregor promoted a "Poyaisian New Three per cent Consolidated Stock" as "the President of the Poyaisian Republic". In 1834 he was living in Scotland and had to issue a new series of land certificates as payment for unredeemed securities. In 1836 he wrote a new constitution for the Poyaisian Republic. The last record of any Poyais scheme is in 1837, when he tried to sell some land certificates.
In 1839 Gregor MacGregor moved to Venezuela where he had requested and received Venezuelan citizenship, and a pension as a general who had fought for independence. He died in Caracas on 4 December 1845.
References from Gregor's history/early life i guess;
Adams, John Quincy, the memoir of John Quincy Adams, comprising portions of his diary from 1795 to 1848. Volume 4, J.B. Lippincott and Co., 1875
Arends, Tulio. Sir Gregor MacGregor: Un escosés tras la aventura de América. Caracas, Monte Ávila Editores, 1991. ISBN 980-01-0265-5 (Spanish)
British and Foreign State Papers, Volume 5. Great Britain, Foreign and Commonwealth Office. HMSO 1837
Brown, Matthew. Adventuring through Spanish Colonies: Simón Bolívar, Foreign Mercenaries and the Birth of New Nations. Liverpool University Press, 2006. ISBN 1-84631-044-X
Coker, William S., Florida from the beginning to 1992. Houston Texas, Pioneer Publications 1991
Connecticut Couran. Hartford, CT. 12 August 1817. "McGregor is unlikely to succeed in reducing St. Augustine".
Davis, T. Frederick, MacGregor's Invasion of Florida, 1817; Together with an account of his successors Hubbard and Aury on Amelia Island, East Florida. The Florida Historical Society quarterly. Volume 07 Issue 01. July 1928.
Hasbrouck, Alfred. Foreign Legionnaires in the Liberation of Spanish South America Columbia University Press, New York,
Landers, Jane G., Atlantic Creoles in the Age of Revolutions. Harvard University Press, 20101928 and New York, Octagon Books, 1969.
McMurtrie, Douglas Crawford. Republic of the Floridas: Constitution and frame of government drafted by a committee appointed by the Assembly of representatives, and submitted at Fernandina, 9 December 1817. 5 pages Private printing 1942
Miller, John. Narrative of a Voyage to the Spanish Main, in the Ship "Two Friends", The Occupation of Amelia Island, by M'gregor, &c. London, 1819
Niles' weekly register, Volume 13. Franklin Press Baltimore, Maryland, September 1817–24 January 1818
Owsley Jr., Frank Lawrence, and Smith, Gene A. Filibusters and Expansionists: Jeffersonian Manifest Destiny, 1800–1821. Tuscaloosa, Alabama 1997
Rodríguez, Moises Enrique. Freedom's Mercenaries: British Volunteers in the Wars of Independence of Latin America, 2 vols. Lanham, Hamilton Books, University Press of America, 2006. ISBN 978-0-7618-3438-0
Sinclair, David. The Land that Never Was: Sir Gregor MacGregor and the Most Audacious Fraud in History. Cambridge, Da Capo Press, 2004. ISBN 978-0-306-81411-2. London, Review, 2003. ISBN 978-0-7553-1079-1
Strangeways, Thomas. Knight of the Green Cross (Pseudonym for Gregor MacGregor?). Sketch of the Mosquito Shore. Edinburgh, W. Reid, 1822.