Sunset at Gowanus Bay

Sunset at Gowanus Bay
Sunset at Gowanus Bay, Henry Gritten, 1851

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Early Browers of Lee, Oneida County, New York

Oneida County, New York is in the middle of New York State, west of Albany and east of Syracuse. It was created in 1798 out of Herkimer County which in turn had been created in 1791 out of Montgomery County. The Town of Lee, which we're specifically interested in here, was formed in 1811 out of the Town of Western, which in turn had been formed in 1797 out of the Town of Steuben (not to be confused with the county of the same name), when these towns were still under Herkimer County. Steuben had been formed in 1792 out of the Town of Whitestown, known as the "Mother of Towns," which was first settled about 1784.

Our interest in the Browers found in Lee stems from the Y-DNA test results of a newer member of the Brewer DNA Project. His basic Y-DNA results place him as a match with descendants of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I. His earliest known direct male ancestor is Richard Brower who was born about 1804 (age 46 in 1850), somewhere in New York. In 1830 he can be found in the Town of Lee, and is found there through at least 1860. My virtue of the Y-DNA test of a known descendant, we know that Richard Brower must be a descendant of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I. However, we do not know Richard Brower's paternal line back to Jan Brouwer. And so our interest in the Browers of the Town of Lee. This post is intended as a general survey of the Brower names found in Oneida County, and the Town of Lee in particular during the first have of the 1800s, with the hope that it might provide some initial leads into the ancestry of Richard Brower.

As mentioned, Oneida County was created in 1798, and so the first record that is available is the 1800 U. S. census. Using the search tools at both and, I find NO persons named BROWER on the 1800 census in Oneida County. There is a David BREWER, enumerated at Augusta, Onedia County with a household of five males under age 10, one male age 26-44 (b. 1756-1774), one female 10-15 and one female 26-44. But, no head who can be identified as a BROWER.

The 1810 U. S. census for Oneida County, is unfortunately limited in the info it provides. The towns are not separated out and only first initials are recorded for given names. A search comes up with an A. BROWER, with a household of three males under age 10, one male 26-44 (1766-1784), one female under age 10 and one female 26-44. There is an L. BROWER, with a household of one male under 10, one male 10-15, one male 26-44 (1766-1784), three females under 10, one female 16-25, one female 26-44). The search tools provided also bring up a J. Brower, and a W. Brower, but upon inspection of the actual census record, it is apparent in these two cases that the surname is BROWN, and not BROWER.

There is an 1814 "census," more accurately a list of land owners, for Oneida County. A typescript can be found on in the New York Land Records collection under Oneida County. It is arranged by town. For the Town of Lee (which formed in 1811) I find no listing of the name BROWER.

Land Owners, Lee, NY, 1814 (
I also checked the Town of Western, from which Lee was created, and again, no BROWERs.

The 1820 U. S. census has an Abraham BROWER at Westmoreland, with a household of one male under 10, one male 26-44 (1776-1794), one female under 10, 1 female 26-44. There are also a number of BREWERs, including David (over 45), Erastus (26-44) and John (26-44) at Augusta; an Artemus (26-44) at Verona, a Henry (over 45) at Western, and a William (26-44) at Rome.

We find our first BROWER heads in the Town of Lee with the 1830 U. S. census. Here we have David BROWER with a household of one male 15-20 (1810-1815), three males 20-30 (1800-1810), one male 50-60 (1770-1780), two females 5-9, one female 10-15, one female 15-20, one female 40-50 (1780-1790). We also find Richard BROWER (indexed as BROWN, but the image looks more like BROWER) with a household of one male 20-30 (1800-1810), one female under 5, one female 20-30). There are a number of other Browers and Brewers in other towns. Our focus is on the Town of Lee.

There is a typescript of an 1835 "census" for the Town of Lee (found in the same file as the 1814 record above). Only names are given and here are David Brower, Edward Brower, William Brower and John Brower, but no Richard Brower. Some of the other towns, including Western, were searched as well, but the name Richard Brower is absent.

Land Owners, Lee, NY, 1835 (

In the Town of Lee on the 1840 U. S. census we find Edward Brower with a household of one male age 30-40 (1800-1810), two females under 5, one female 20-30 (1810-1820). He is found second up from the bottom on this census sheet for Lee.

1840 US census Lee, NY (NARA via

Immediately above Edward is William Brower with a household of one male under age 5, one male 20-30 (1810-1820), one female under 5, one female 20-30. Immediately above William is John Brower with a household of one male under 5, one male 10-15, one male 40-50 (1790-1800), one female under 5, one female 5-10, one female 40-50. Five places up from John is David Brower with a household of one male under 5, one male 20-30 (1810-1820), one male 30-40 (1800-1810), one male 60-70 (1770-1780), one female 50-60 (1780-1790). Richard Brower is not found in Lee, however, he is enumerated in the Town of Western with a household of two males 5-10, one male 30-40 (1800-1810), one female under 5, one female 5-10, one female 10-15, one female 30-40. Remember, the Town of Lee was set off from Western back in 1811. The towns are adjacent to each other, they share a line that runs north to south, with Lee west of Western.

The 1850 U. S. census is of course the first in which entire households are enumerated by name. However, relationships between those within each household are not stated. Parent-child relationships are often inferred from this census, however, additional evidence is generally suggested before accepting the relationship as fact. Richard Brower is found in Lee, on page 272, age 46 (c.1804) born in New York, a farmer. In the household is Phebe Brower (presumably his wife) age 45, born in New York, followed by eight (presumed) children ranging in age from 21 down to 0 (see image).

1850 US census, Lee NY p.272 (NARA via
Three households above Richard on the same sheet is George Brower, age 26 (c.1824) born in New York, a farmer. In his household are Sarah Brower, age 16, Helen Brower, age 15 and Daniel Dougall, age 16.

In 1850, Edward Brower is found on page 273, age 52 (c.1808), born in New York, a farmer, with Harriet Brower, age 30, and Sally Brower, age 14, both born in New York. David Brower, John Brower and William Brower, all found in Lee in 1840, are not found in that town in 1850. A John Brower is found in Annsville, the town west of Lee sharing a north-south line. John is age 50 (c.1800) born in New York, farmer. In the household are Catharine Brower, age 26, Milton Brower age 24, James Brower, 13, Eunice Brower, 6 and Marshall Brower, 3. A Find-A-Grave memorial (#11916787) for John Brower, with a photo of the grave marker, confirms that Catharine was his wife, albeit considerably younger than John. John died in 1881 and is buried in Lee Center, a village in the Town of Lee. I would surmise that Catharine was a second wife. A William Brower, age 38 (c.1812), born in New York, is found in the Town of Western in 1850. Remember, Lee was created out of Western in 1811, and Western lies east of Lee. The household consists of Jemima Brower, age 33, born in Wales, Lovina Brower (14), Charles Brower (12), Asa Brower (9), John Brower (6) and Alma Brower (1) all born in New York.

In 1850 there are three additional households headed by men not found as heads in Lee in 1840. Abram Brower, age 37 (c.1813) born in New York, farmer, with a household of Eliza, age 24 born in New York, Charles (3, NY) and Elry (2, NY). There is David Brower, age 40 (c.1810) born in New York, farmer, with one other individual in the household, Chloe Brower, age 19, born in New York. A Find-A-Grave memorial (#11687861) gives David Brower's birth as 1806, he died in 1871, and Chloe (1831-1866) was his wife. There is a photo of the grave marker. They are buried in Belcher Road Cemetery in Lee Center (also see the transcript for this cemetery at USGENWEB Archives). And there is Thomas G. Brower, age 34 (c.1816) born in New York, farmer. His real estate is valued at $6000 which is more than any other Brower in Lee in 1850. In the household are Mary Brower, age 33, born in New York, Hellen Brower (11, NY), Edwin Brower (9, NY), John Brower (7, NY), Elizabeth Brower (5, NY), Amason Brower (3, NY). Also in the household are George Tarrance, age 36, New York, and Charlotte Fraxel, age 20, born in New York. No occupation is recorded for these two.

Probate records for Oneida County are available online at They can be searched from a home computer. There is a Will Index, 1798 to 1909, which was searched in the hope of finding a Brower, particularly one from the years prior to 1850, but none was found. Administration Accounts for the years 1830 to 1856 are online with an index at the front of each volume. There are no Browers in volume 1. And there are no Browers in volume 2. All other probate records for Oneida County post date the period we are interested in here. If any of the early Browers of Oneida County died within the county, their estates were not settled through the Surrogate's Court which was established when the county was formed.

David and Chloe Brower are buried in the Belcher Road Cemetery in Lee Center. As mentioned above there is a memorial on Find-A-Grave. Searching that same cemetery on Find-A-Grave for others named Brower, brings up only one other, Esther Brower Olcott (memorial #11688041). There is a photo of her grave marker stating that she was born in 1816 and died in 1903. Her husband was Edward Olcott (1814-1903). There is also a transcript of an obituary from the Utica Herald Dispatch, dated December 10, 1903 (the same date of her death). A copy of this newspaper page was found on the "Old Fulton New York Postcards" website. A PDF of the page is online here. The obituary of Mrs. Edward Olcott is found in the first column at the bottom (bottom left corner of the PDF). You'll want to download it so that you can enlarge it. The obit states that she was born in 1816 in Saratoga County, New York and calls her father Abram Brower and that they moved to Lee when she was six years old, so about 1822 or 1823. Esther was married in Lee in 1834, but when checking the 1830 U. S. census, I find no Abram (or Abraham) Brower in Lee, or anywhere in Oneida County. There is an Abraham BREWER in Greenfield, Saratoga Co., New York in 1830 with a household of one male 30-40 (1790-1800), one female under 5, and one female 20-30 (1800-1810). As she was born in 1816, you would expect that Esther's father was born, at the latest, in the early 1790s or before.

From the above we can see that the earliest Browers in Oneida County were Abraham and David. Abraham appears in Westmoreland in 1820 and if we assume that he is the "A. Brower" found in Oneida County in 1810, he was born, according to the age ranges on these two census records, between 1776 and 1784. He is not found on census records or in probate records after 1820. David is first seen on the 1830 census, is found on the 1835 list of land owners, and is on the 1840 census. Based on the two census records, he was born between 1770 and 1780. David is not found on the 1850 census, and no probate record has been found in Oneida County.

The next generation of Browers in Lee consists of Richard, born c.1804 (1850 census); Edward, born c.1808 (1850 census); John, born c.1800 (1850 census); William, born c.1812 (1850 census); Abram, born c. 1813 (1850 census), David, born 1806 (g.s., but age 40 on the 1850 census) and Thomas G., born c.1816 (1850 census). Go back to the 1830 census and note that David Brower of Lee has in his household one male age 15-20 and three males age 20-30. In 1830 Richard Brower is himself a head of household, but it is possible, perhaps probable that four of the six others (Edward, John, William, Abram, David and Thomas G.) are the males enumerated in David Brower's household in 1830. When we move up to 1840, David Brower's household includes one male age 20-30 and one age 30-40 (along with himself age 60-70). In 1840, Edward, William, John, and Richard all head households of their own. Perhaps two of the remaining three, Abram Brower, David Brower and Thomas G. Brower (all in Lee in 1850) are the two males in David's household in 1840.

The census records considered above are certainly not proof that David Brower (b. 1770-1780) is the father of any of the Browers found in the next generation who were born between 1800 and 1820, however, it does set David Brower up as the obvious person to give first consideration. He may be the father of all, or perhaps some, or perhaps none. He may or may not be the father of Richard Brower, born c.1804. We'll have to look for additional evidence.

BGB 656

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Peter Brewer (1826-1887) of Franklin, Warren County, Ohio (continued)

Continued from the post of May 30, 2019.

Julia (Swartzel) Brewer, wife of Peter Brewer (1826-1887) is found on the 1850 U. S. census at Germantown, Montgomery Co., Ohio in the household of Frederick Swartzell (sic). Julia is recorded as Jeliloh Swartzell and her age is given as 16. She was born in Ohio. The household is large and included are Elizah (sic) Swartzell, age 5, male (this is her brother Elijah mentioned in her will), and Henry Swartzell, age 0. The surname is variously spelled with one l or two (ll) over different historical records. In addition there are other variations on the surname, some from mis-transcriptions for indexes and the like.

The will of Frederick Swartzell is found in Montgomery Co., Ohio Wills, vol. M, p. 207. The will was presented to the Probate Court of Montgomery County on 20 July 1885. The will itself begins on page 208. He leaves property to his daughter-in-law Jane Swartzell (land; she would be the wife of son Elijah Swartzell), his son Isaac Swartzell (land), son Elijah Jackson Swartzell (land), daughter Geliea Brewer and her heirs (a 64 acre tract of land), grandchildren Clara Smith, Robert Smith, Charles Barkelow and Perry Swartzell ($100 each), granddaughter Marietta Barkelow ($200). The will is dated 30 August 1884 and Frederick Swartzell signed with his mark. Additional items are then added to the will in which Frederick Swartzell mentions that his sons Henry and Isaac are to support their mother Margaret Swartzell. The full probate file is not available at, however, it is available at (with a subscription to the U. S. records). As with Julia Brewer's will, there is a sheet on which heirs are mentioned.

Montgomery Co. OH Estate File no. 14315. Frederick Swartzell (Montgomery Co. OH Probate via
Julia Brewer, her name rendered as Gelilia Brewer. Also listed, although not mentioned in the will, is son Michael D. Swartzell. We will get back to him soon. First we should take a step back and mention some general information regarding the location and settlement of the towns in which the Swartzell and Brewer families lived.

The Swartzells lived in the Township of German, Montgomery County, Ohio and that is location of the marriage of Peter Brewer and Julia Swatsley (sic). Peter and Julia then lived in Franklin, Warren County, Ohio. Warren County and Montgomery County are adjacent to one another and are found in the southwest corner of Ohio. Montgomery County borders Warren County on Warren's northwest. The town of Franklin is on Warren County's north line and it abuts Montgomery County and the Township of German (which includes the village of Germantown). The History of Warren County, Ohio (W. H. Beers, 1882) which is available online, gives us a brief history of Franklin Township beginning at page 509. The first settlement at or near Franklin appears to have happened in 1804 (Ohio had been admitted as a state in 1803) and the first there were brothers, William and Derrick Barkelow. They were from New Jersey. As you read through the history you will find mention of the names Vanderveer, Dubois, Lane, Schenck, Conover, Poast, Wyckoff, Denise and Barkelow. Those who have spent time researching the Brewers and Browers of New Jersey (particularly in Monmouth County) will recognize these surnames. Turn (scroll) to page 515 and you will find mention of the New Jersey Presbyterian Church. Both Peter and Julia Brewer are buried in the "New Jersey Presbyterian Cemetery" in Carlisle, which a village partly in Franklin Township and partly in German Township. Although not mentioned by name in The History of Warren County, Ohio, there can be no doubt that Peter Brewer's parents came to Franklin, Ohio with these families. Peter himself was born in Ohio, as per census records, in 1826. On the 1880 U. S. census the place of birth of his parents is stated to be New Jersey.

As mentioned above, Michael D. Swartzell is listed as a son of Frederick Swartzell in the file for Frederick's estate. He is listed first (although not mentioned in the will) and on that 1850 U. S. census record for Frederick Swartzell's family he is recorded as age 18, the eldest of Frederick's children. On 10 October 1855, Michael Swartzell married, in Warren County, Sarah Jane Brewer. Records of the New Jersey Presbyterian Church at Carlisle, Ohio, record the birth of Sarah Jane, daughter of Aaron and Patience Bruer (sic) as 29 September 1834.

NJ Presbyterian Church, Carlisle, OH. Record of birth and baptism of Sarah Jane Brewer (
Sarah Jane (Brewer) Swartzell died 13 June 1893 and his buried in the New Jersey Presbyterian Cemetery. Her husband, Michael Swartzell died in 1903. Sarah's father, Aaron Brewer can be found in Franklin, Warren Co., Ohio on the 1850 U. S. census. Aaron is age 52, and was born in New Jersey. In the household are Oletta Brewer, age 22, Aaron Brewer, age 17 and Anky Brewer, age 15. All three were born in Ohio. Aaron's wife was Patience D. Wikoff (Wyckoff). She had died in 1839. Aaron died in 1856, and both are buried in the New Jersey Presbyterian Cemetery. The profile for Aaron Brewer on the BGD is incomplete, and we can now add daughter Sarah Jane Brewer, born 29 September 1834 in Warren Co., Ohio, to the family. The first I find of Aaron Brewer in Franklin, Ohio is on the 1830 U. S. census where he is listed tenth up from the bottom on page 199, just above Aukey Wycoff who would have been Patience Wycoff's father. Examine this census page and you will notice that it is dominated by family names familiar to anyone who has conducted research in Monmouth County, New Jersey.

1830 U.S. census Franklin, OH, p. 199 (NARA via
Aaron's household is recorded as one male under age 5, 1 male 30-39, two females under 5, one female 5-9, one female 20-29. The family for Aaron Brewer as found on the last edition of the BGD does not include a son who would have been born between 1825 and 1830 as the 1830 census suggests. Although we have to continue to search for more convincing proof, I strongly suspect that the male child under age 5 is our Peter Brewer, born in 1826, the husband of Julia Swartzell. I'll just add to this that the only other Brewer family in Franklin, Ohio by 1850 is the family of the elder Peter Brewer, born ca. 1797. In the May 30, 2019 post, we concluded that the younger Peter was not a son of the elder Peter as had previously been suggested.

The Find-A-Grave memorial for Aaron Brewer (#32008264) includes a photo of a worn gravestone, and gives his date of birth as 25 April 1796. On the Brouwer Genealogy Database, I suggested that Aaron Brewer might be one and the same as Aaron Brower, who according to a Bible record, was born 15 April 1796, a son of Peter Brower (1760-1821) and his wife Anne (1761-1811). The difference in the birth dates is just the first digit of the day of birth, and I can't help but suspect that this is simply a transcription error somewhere along the line which is re-enforced by the fact that Aaron's gravestone in Carlisle is worn. Again, we want to find more evidence, but I'd suggest that Peter and Anne Brower's son, Aaron, went to Carlisle, Ohio. The ancestry of Peter Brower (1760-1821) is not certain. The Bible record says that he is a son of Cornelis Brouwer (1713-1768) and who was a son of Sybrandt Brouwer and Sara Webber. I very much doubt that claim. Cornelis Brouwer's family is fairly well documented and there is no record of a son Peter. In addition, Sybrandt Brouwer is a very popular but often incorrect "gateway ancestor" for those desperately seeking a link to the infamous Anneke Jans (who was his great grandmother). I think that this is just another case of that. The mentioned Bible record can be found online here. A transcription of the Bible record begins at page 7. Previous to that (pp. 4-6) we have the supposed Anneke Jans lineage (there are errors within this as well). The link of Peter to Cornelis is likely an addition by the transcriber. Probably wishful thinking and yet another false Anneke Jans lead.

I'd suggest that it is more likely that Peter Brower, whose birth is given only as 1760, but who apparently lived in New Jersey, was the Petrus Brouwer, baptized on 23 September 1759 by the Reformed Dutch Congregation at Freehold and Middletown, New Jersey, a son of Pieter Brouwer and Antje Van Dyk. If correct, he would then be a descendant of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands and not of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus. Y-DNA testing of a direct male descendant of Aaron Brewer of Franklin, Warren Co., Ohio, may help us here. If there is one out there, the Brewer DNA Project would love to hear from you.

Lizzie E. Brewer has not been forgotten. She was the niece named in the estate file of Julia Brewer (see the May 30 post). BREWER was Lizzie's married name. She was born Lizzie E. (or Elizabeth) Swartzel in about 1876 (January 1876 according to the 1900 U. S. census) and was a daughter of D. Calvin Swartzell and Louisa Rexsold. D. Calvin Swartzell (1841-1913) was a brother of Julia (Swartzel) Brewer, and so Lizzie E. was Julia's niece through her own family and not through her husband Peter Brewer's family. Lizzie E. Swartzel was first married to George W. Wagner on 7 September 1893 in Montgomery Co., Ohio. George died in 1894. On 30 October 1907, in Montgomery County, Lizzie Wagner married Albert Brewer. The record of this marriage lists her parents as Calvin Swartzel and Louisa Rerroad (sic). Albert's mother is given as Anna Davis. Anna Davis was married on 21 February 1858, in Warren County, to Aaron Brewer who in turn was a son of Aaron Brewer and Patience Wycoff. Albert and Lizzie Brewer can be found in City Directories and census records for Dayton, Ohio beginning in 1910. Albert's full name was Jeremiah Albert Brewer. According to his WWI draft card he was born 25 October 1878. They did not have children.

Research for much of the above was done using For sources please consult the various pages for Aaron Brewer, Peter Brewer, Julia Swartzel, Frederick Swartzel, Lizzie Swartzel,  and Jeremiah Albert Brewer. A paid subscription is required to access these pages - I know, that stinks, but is, like it or not, the most efficient way to research 19th and 20th century families and genealogical records. For other sources please consult the Brouwer Genealogy Database with the links found above in this post. Finally, an important note: the pages are located with a "tree" (I prefer calling it a database, but Ancestry calls them trees) titled, "Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I." It is important to note that it has not yet been proved that Aaron Brewer is a descendant of Jan Brouwer. These profiles are found there because research began with Peter Brewer (b. ca. 1797) and once things got rolling it was more efficient to keep it all together in this database (tree). Having said that, I do think that Aaron Brewer is a descendant of Jan Brouwer, but we do want more convincing proof, and perhaps a Y-DNA test from a direct male descendant.

In summary: Peter Brewer (1826-1887) is not a son of Peter Brewer (b. ca. 1797) of Franklin, Ohio. Peter Brewer (1826-1887) is more probably a son of Aaron Brewer (1796-1856) and Patience Wicoff/Wycoff. Peter Brewer (1826-1887) married Julia Swartzell. They had three daughters (and possibly a son Willie H. who died as an infant, but that's not certain and needs further investigating which we have no room for here). None of the daughters appear to have had children and it is looks as if there are no living descendants of Peter Brewer (1826-1887). Aaron Brewer (1796-1856) is probably the Aaron Brower born to Peter Brower and his wife Anne. He was born in New Jersey and came to Franklin, Ohio with other families whose origins are in Monmouth County, New Jersey. I suspect that Aaron Brewer is a descendant of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, and that he and Peter Brewer (b. ca. 1797 in New Jersey) who is also found in Franklin, Ohio, are somehow cousins. Peter Brewer (b. ca. 1797) is a descendant of Jan Brouwer. Aaron Brewer had descendants and some may well be living today. Any living direct male descendants of Aaron Brewer could help the cause of identifying his ancestry by taking a Y-DNA test, the results of which could be compared to known descendants of both Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I. and Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L. I.

BGB 655

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Update to the Branch of Adam Brouwer Descendants on the YFull YTree

The branch of YFull's YTree which is populated by descendants of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L. I., and identified by the SNP E-Y19643 has been updated to include a new sub-branch. The updated tree is v7.04.01.

The new branch is identified by the SNP labeled E-BY52668. It is identified by the test results of two individuals. One tested individual can trace his lineage completely back to Adam Brouwer through Adam Brouwer's son Nicholas Brouwer. The second tested individual can be traced back to Charles H. Brower who was born in 1820, possibly in New York City, and died 12 January 1860 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Although the YDNA testing of Charles H. Brower's descendant tells us without a doubt that he is a direct male descendant of Adam Brouwer, the ancestry of Charles H. Brower, beginning with the identity of his father, is still unknown. The identification of this SNP, which is only shared by these two tested descendants of Adam Brouwer, tells us that Charles H. Brower is very likely a descendant of Adam Brouwer's son, Nicholas Brouwer, who was born in 1672. Furthermore, we do have one other very likely descendant of Nicholas Brouwer on the YFull tree, and since this descendant does not share E-BY52668, it is very likely that the common ancestor of the two who do share E-BY52668 is somewhere among the male descendants of Adam Brouwer's son Nicholas Brouwer. In other words, Nicholas Brouwer himself did not have SNP E-BY52668, but it first appeared with one of his descendants who was born previous to 1820.

For a bit more on Charles H. Brower, see the post of November 8, 2018.

The Brewer DNA Project now has 15 members of the Adam Brouwer sub-group who have taken FTDNA's BigY test and have had their test results analyzed by YFull and placed on YFull's YTree. The Adam Brouwer sub-group of the Brewer DNA Project now has a total of 49 members, 26 of whom do know their complete ancestry back to Adam Brouwer. We would suspect that if more members could upgrade to the BigY test AND submit their results to YFull for further evaluation, we would likely be able to identify additional SNPs that will identify new sub-branches of Adam Brouwer's descendants. This in turn may help those who are yet to identify their complete ancestry back to Adam Brouwer to do so by narrowing down the possible lines of ancestry to consider. Those considering taking a BigY test should contact Hank Graham, the administrator of the Brewer DNA Project, with any questions.

BGB 654

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Caleb P. Brower and Caleb S. Brower in Longworth's New York City Directories

The post of November 8, 2018 suggests that Caleb Pell Brower and Caleb S. Brower were in fact two different men. We can follow that up now with some direct evidence. Sara Brower did some research at the New York State Library and by email sent images of pages from various editions of Longworth's New York City Directory. This includes a page from the 1821/22 Directory in which BOTH Caleb P. Brower and Caleb S. Brower appear in succession on the same page, demonstrating that they are in fact two distinct men. The Lonworth Directories can be found online in the New York Public Library's Digital Collections. I'll provide some links and downloaded images.

The 1820/21 New York City Directory can be found here and I recommend that you select to View as a Book. You will find Browers on page 95 (there are a good number of them) and here we can see both Caleb P. Brower, shoemaker, (at) 64 Hester east of Bowery, and two men named Caleb S. Brower, one a grocer, the other a plumber.

Longworth's NYC Directory for 1820/21, p. 95 (NYPL Digital Collections)
The 1821/22 New York City Directory lists Caleb P. Brower, shoemaker, 22 Division and Caleb S. Brower, 24 Rivington, on page 94.

Longworth's NYC Directory for 1821/22, p. 94 (NYPL Digital Collections)
In the 1822/23 New York City Directory we find only Caleb P. Brower, shoemaker, Stanton c. Eldridge, on page 95. Caleb S. Brower is not listed.

Longworth's NYC Directory for 1822/23, p. 95 (NYPL Digital Collections)
Turn to page 96 of the 1822/23 Directory and you will find an entry for "Brower widow Maria" at boardinghouse 3 Mulberry. From the November 8, 2018 post we know that Caleb S. Brower's wife was Mary Marschalk. Perhaps this is Mary? That can't be claimed with certainty, but it is a possibility. We do not yet have a date of death for Caleb S. Brower.

Beginning with the 1823/1824 New York City Directory we no longer find either of the two Caleb Browers (Caleb P. and Caleb S.). Here are pages 94-95, no Caleb Browers although there is an entry for a "Brower widow" at 120 Chapel (bottom of p. 94) and the widow Maria Brower at the boardinghouse at 3 Mulberry on p. 95. Again, although the widows cannot be identified as the widows of either of the two Calebs from the Directory itself, the entries are something to consider when continuing this research.

Neither Caleb P. Brower nor Caleb S. Brower can be found in the Directories for 1824/25 or 1825/26. The widow Maria Brower is found at the boardinghouse on 3 Mulberry in 1824/25 (page 96) and in 1825/26 (page 95).

Moving backwards in time from 1820/21, the 1819/1820 New York City Directory lists only Caleb S. Brower, plumber, 342 Water & 97 Washington on page 96. The 1818/1819 edition lists only Caleb S. Brower, plumber, 342 Water on page 63. I'm not finding a copy of the 1817/18 edition online, but the 1816/17 Directory does list Caleb S. Brower, plumber, 342 Water, on page 136. The 1815/16 Directory, at page 142, lists "Brower & Co., Caleb S., plumbers, 342 Water." In 1814/15 Caleb S. Brower is a plumber at 342 Water (page 34) and he is also listed as a plumber at 342 Water in 1813/14 (page 80). However, the 1812/1813 Directory lists Caleb S. Brower as an accountant at 342 Water (page 39).

Longworth's NYC Directory 1812/13, p. 39 (NYPL Digital Collections)
Caleb S. Brower is not found in the 1811/12 Directory. There is a "Brower & Co., C. S., grocers at 51 John at the top of page 37. The 1820/21 Directory (above) had listed a Caleb S. Brower, grocer at Watts c. James-slip.

Caleb S. Brower was born 22 March 1790, and would have been under the age of 21 prior to 1811. I would not expect to find him in directories prior to 1811 or 1810.

Caleb P. Brower is not found in any of the New York City Directories prior to 1820/21. He is last found in New York City in the directory for 1822/23. Remember, he is mentioned in his father's will dated 26 June 1849, so I would assume that he was alive on that date. The search for Caleb Pell Brower continues.

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Peter Brewer (1826-1887) of Franklin, Warren County, Ohio

Peter Brewer, born 22 October 1826 in Ohio, died 4 January 1887, presumably at Franklin, Warren County, Ohio, is found on the Brouwer Genealogy Database as a possible son of Peter Brewer (b. c.1797) and his wife Mary (___). He is shown as a descendant of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I. At least some of this is incorrect and we want to take the time with this post to update and correct what is known regarding both Peter (1826-1887) and the Peter Brewer (b. c.1797) shown as his possible father. Research here was done using both and probate records found for Warren County at

It can be stated without a doubt that Peter Brewer (1826-1887) is not a possible son of Mary (b. c.1808) who can now be identified as Mary McFeters (or McFeeters). Peter Brewer (b. c.1797) married Mary McFeters on 28 February 1833 in Warren County, Ohio ( Ohio, County Marriage Records, 1774-1993 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2016, see image that follows). Peter Brewer, born 1826, was of course born about six years and four months previous to this date.

Ohio, County Marriage Records, from The Brewer-McFeters marriage is on the left page at the bottom
This coupled with the 1860 U. S. census for the household of Peter Brewer, age 63, born in New Jersey, which includes wife Mary, whose age is given as 42, and (assumed) children George, Ida Anna, and Amanda, as well as John McFeeters, age 24, leads me to believe that this marriage does belong to the elder Peter Brewer (see the image that follows). The marriage is seven years after the younger Peter Brewer's birth and so rules out Mary as a possible mother. While it remains possible that the elder Peter Brewer may be the younger Peter Brewer's father, by a previous (yet unknown) marriage, I tend to doubt that that is the case. Despite the fact that both Peters lived in Franklin, that in of itself is not evidence that they are father and son. As we will eventually see, there is another Brewer family in Franklin. It is still possible that Peter Brewer (1826-1887) is a descendant of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, L. I., but we need to learn more before we can say so (or not) with more certainty.

1860 US census Franklin OH, p. 70 (NARA via
Peter Brewer (1826-1887) was married to Julia Swartzell on 12 October 1853 in Montgomery County, Ohio which bounds Warren County on the north. There is a record of their marriage in which Julia's surname is recorded as "Swatzley."

Peter Brewer - Julia Swatsley record of marriage, Montgomery Co., Ohio (Ohio County Marriage Records at

 The couple can be found in Franklin, Warren County on the 1860 U. S. census, without any children, on page 23 (the elder Peter Brewer and his family is found on page 70, see above). Peter and Julia can be found in Franklin on both the 1870 and 1880 U. S. census records. The 1870 household includes Maggie Brewer, age 10 and Lilly Brewer, age 4. The 1880 census includes daughters Maggie Brewer, age 20, Lilly Brewer age 14, and Emma Brewer, age 9. The 1880 census also includes Andrew Baird, age 78, born in New Jersey, widower, who is described as "father" in the relationship column (to head of household, Peter Brewer) but we will soon see that this is not correct. Andrew Baird is not Peter Brewer's father (he also is not Julia's father).

1880 U.S. census, Franklin, OH (NARA via
The will of Andrew Baird can be found in Warren County Wills, volume 21-R, beginning at page 538 (image no. 1329 in this film at The will records in this volume are nice in that they include more than just the wills. A list of heirs with their kinship to the testator are included here on page 539. There is no son named Peter (either Brewer or Baird) listed (and no daughter named Julia Brewer either). Andrew Baird's will was dated 18 October 1878 (neither Peter or Julia are mentioned in it in any capacity). It was proved 5 September 1881. In between, in June of 1880, Andrew Baird was, for whatever reason, enumerated in the household of Peter Brewer. Andrew is buried in the "New Jersey Presbyterian" Cemetery in Carlisle, Warren County (Find-A-Grave memorial #58943582) as is Peter and Julia Brewer (Find-A-Grave memorial 31893475). They were members of the same church. Perhaps the Brewers simply took in an elderly fellow church member for a period of time. Whatever the reason for Andrew Baird's enumeration in Peter Brewer's household in 1880, it is apparent that he was not Peter's father.

As seen from his gravestone, Peter Brewer died 4 January 1887. I have not found a probate record in Warren County for Peter Brewer. Julia lived another 29 years and died in 1916. She did leave a will.

Julia Brewer can be found on the 1900 U. S. census in Franklin, Ohio, age 65, born December 1834 in Ohio, widow, as the head of a household which includes daughter Margaret B. Brewer, age 40, born May 1860, single, and Anna Miller, age 32, born in Ohio, relationship recorded as "servant." In 1910, Julia Brewer, age 75 is found in Franklin as a widow, living off income, owns her home, but no other household members are recorded. Julia Brewer's death is recorded in Ohio as 20 May 1916.

Julia's will is found in Warren County Wills vol. 33, beginning at the bottom of page 174 (image no. 773 at, Ohio Probate Records, 1789-1996, Warren, Wills 1910-1916 vol 31-33). Her date of death is confirmed as 20 May 1916. The probate hearing was opened on 27 May 1916 and her will was proved on 2 June 1916. Here again we have the benefit of a list of her heirs with their relationship to Julia and their address (p. 175). What stands out is that none of her children are listed. However, we do find brothers Elijah J. Swartzel, Henry A. Swartzel and Isaac M. Swartzel, and a list of nephews, nieces and a grandnephew among whom we find, Lizzie E. Brewer, niece, Dayton, Ohio. Perhaps Lizzie is a clue to Peter Brewer's family? We will have to look into that possibility. The will itself begins on page 178. She refers to herself as Julia Brewer of Carlisle, Warren County. Executors are to sell all real estate and when her entire estate is "reduced to money," it is to be distributed to her legatees. Not all of those found on the list on page 175 are mentioned by name in the will. The will was dated 21 May 1907. Her brother Isaac M. Swartzell of Germantown, Ohio, and M. A. Reiter of Miamisburg, Ohio were appointed executors.

Of primary importance here is the fact that none of Peter and Julia Brewer's three known daughters are mentioned in either the will or in the probate proceedings. It looks as if all three died prior to their mother who wrote her will in May of 1907. And, we have a clue in the individual named Lizzie E. Brewer, living in Dayton, Ohio in May of 1916, to be investigated as a possible link to Julia (Swartzel) Brewer's husband, Peter Brewer (1826-1887).

To be continued...

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Saturday, May 25, 2019

Cornelius Brower of Hamilton, Madison County, New York (continued)

Continued from the post of May 7, 2019.

In his will dated 18 April 1867 (Madison Co. Estate File 2916), Cornelius Brower mentions his wife, Mary A. Brower, and three children - sons Charles A. Brower and Norman Brower, and one daughter, Artemisia Edwards. It is apparent from land records and census records that his wife, Mary A., was a second wife who was not the mother of his children. As the profile for Cornelius Brower on the Brouwer Genealogy Database is very much incomplete, we'll fill in more details regarding his descendants here. Research on the descendants was largely conducted on and a "tree" for Cornelius Brower of Hamilton, New York can be accessed here (subscription to required). The basics will be filled in on this post, but to access source citations you will need access to the tree.

As stated in the probate file, Cornelius Brower died 4 December 1869. He is buried in Graham Cemetery in Hubbardsville, which is a hamlet in Madison County, New York, just east of Hamilton. A Find-A-Grave memorial (#110932890) includes a photo of his gravestone. His first wife, Roxie (Roxy/Roxa) is buried with him. She died in 1863, and her Find-A-Grave memorial (#11093922) gives her maiden name as Phillips, but I have yet to find other evidence to support this identification (I don't believe that her maiden name is engraved on the gravestone, which is worn). Roxie is the mother of Cornelius' three children and she is found with Cornelius on the 1850 and 1860 U. S. census at Madison, Madison Co., New York, as well as the 1855 New York State census where the location is given as Hamilton. From the census records it appears that both Cornelius and Roxie were born about 1808 or 1809.

Cornelius Brower's second wife, called Mary A. Brower in his will, is identified as Mary A. Burdick, daughter of Samuel Burdick and Polly Beal by John Cortland Crandall in Elder John Crandall of Rhode Island and His Descendants (New Woodstock, N. Y.: J. C. Crandall, 1931) at page 11. Cornelius is listed here as Mary A. Burdick's second of three husbands. Her first husband was Jonathan W. Green (c.1824-1863) who died in Louisiana during the Civil War. Her third husband was Charles J. Brabazon (1832-1909). Mary (Burdick) (Green) (Brower) Brabazon died 31 July 1896 and is buried with her third husband in Mount Hope Cemetery, Norwich, Chenango Co., NY (Find-A-Grave memorial #146747577, but no photo of the grave marker). It appears that Mary A. Burdick did not have any children by any of her three husbands. She can be found, as Mary A. Brower, with Cornelius on the 1865 New York State census at Hamilton, New York. She is also mentioned in a few of the deeds involving the family.

Cornelius Brower had three children. Two sons and one daughter, who follow:

Son, Charles A. Brower was born about 1834 in New York, although whether or not that was in Madison County cannot be ascertained. He died in 1887 and is buried in Graham Cemetery in Hubbardsville under the name of Albert C. Brower (Find-A-Grave memorial #37967014). He is also called Albert in the 1860 U. S. census at Hamilton. Otherwise he is mostly recorded as Charles or Charles A. Brower, whether that be on the federal and state census or in Madison County deeds. He married, probably about 1858, Eliza Smith who was born in England in 1837 or 1838. She outlived her husband by about 36 years and does not appear to have remarried. She died inn 1923 and is buried with her husband in Graham Cemetery. The gravestone includes her maiden name of Smith (Find-A-Grave memorial #110932961). Charles and Eliza had three daughters. The eldest, Alice A. Brower (1859-1928) married King C. Thornton in 1880 (1900 U. S. census) and had one son, Olin A. Thornton (1886-1950) who married Hattie Babcock and had one son of his own. Daughter Hattie C. Brower (c.1871-1963) was married twice, first to Dealton Taylor (1852-1932) and later in life to Earl D. Keith (1864-1957). There is no evidence that she had children or left descendants. Daughter Cora J. Brower (c.1873-1962) married Edward W. Price (1870-1933) and had a daughter Doris B. Price (1909-1992) who was a graduate of Syracuse University and apparently remained single her entire life. The Price family lived in Syracuse, while the other children and grandchildren of Charles and Eliza remained in Madison County or adjacent Chenango County.

Son, Norman Brower was born about 1835. The 1900 U. S. census gives his birth as March 1835. Norman was married three times. His first wife, Mary E. (c.1840-1881) is the mother of his only known child, a son Addison DeForest Brower (c.1865-1943) who appears to have never married and has no known descendants. Addison lived in Madison County until the 1930 census when he is found in Utica, Oneida County. He is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in Hamilton (Find-A-Grave memorial #93350753). Mary E.'s family name has not been determined, but perhaps her son's name is a clue. Norman's second wife, whom he married on 23 December 1886 at Hamilton (N.Y. State Marriage Certificate #17868) was Fidelia A. Abell, a widow of William Witherman Staples whom she married in Knox County, Ohio in 1876. Fidelia was born at sea aboard the ship Fidelia, off the coast of Newfoundland in July 1854. Norman and Fidelia were not married long, perhaps less than a year (one tree on gives their date of divorce as 22 December 1887). Fidelia can be found on the 1900 U. S. census, at Hamilton, under her first married name as Fidelia Staples. Norman's third wife was Ruth J. who according to the 1900 U. S. census was born in New York in March 1849. The same census gives their marriage as having occurred in 1894. Ruth's family identity has not been discovered. Norman does not appear to have any living descendants.

Daughter, Artimicia F. Brower was born about 1841 (March 1841 by the 1900 U. S. census) and died in 1918. She is buried in Graham Cemetery in Hubbardsville as Artimicia Brower (Find-A-Grave memorial #110932860). Artimicia was married three times and had children by all three husbands. In her father's will she is called Artimicia Edwards, and as we've seen, an earlier deed refers to her as Artimicia Holmes. Her first husband was Franklin Holmes (1835-1864) a son of Jabez Holmes and Harriet Smith. He died in service during the Civil War at Point City, Virginia of typhoid fever (New York State Archives; Albany, New York; Town Clerks´ Registers of Men Who Served in the Civil War, ca 1861-1865; Collection Number: (N-Ar)13774; Box Number: 32; Roll Number: 18). Their one child, daughter Hattie Viola Holmes was born 1 May 1862 (according to her Find-A-Grave memorial #100844241). She was married to Albert Truax at a young age (perhaps just 15) in 1876, as per U. S. census records in 1900 and 1910 (New York State did not implement vital record recording until 1881). She left descendants. Artimicia's second husband had the surname Edwards (Cornelius' will), but I have been unable to discover his given name. They had a son, William J. Edwards who was born in February 1867 (1900 U. S. census) who married Carrie Groat (1861-1937) a daughter of Philip A. Groat on 15 April 1901 (N. Y. State marriage certificate #6337). She had previously been married to Mason S. Simpkins who left for Beaverhead Co., Montana, leaving Carrie with a son Herbert Mason Simpkins. William J. Edwards and Carrie Groat did not have children of their own. He died 12 October 1938 at Florence, Oneida Co., New York (N.Y. Death Certificate #61466). William and Carrie are buried in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Camden, Oneida County, New York (Find-A-Grave memorial #46862418). Artimicia's third husband was John H. Youngs whom she married by 1876. They had two children. The eldest, Bert Wellington Youngs was born 4 January 1876 at Florence, Oneida County (World War I Draft Registration and his Social Security application). The second child, daughter Lulu Youngs was born about 1878 and the family, with Artimicia's son William Edwards enumerated as "Willie Youngs," is found on the 1880 U. S. census at Florence, Oneida County. Artimicia is found as a "widow" on the 1900 U. S. census (Florence, N.Y.) indicating that her third husband was deceased by 22 June 1900, the date her household was recorded. However, no New York State death registration for John H. Youngs was found. There are a handful of trees on that claim he was the John H. Youngs found on the 1900 U. S. census at Township 27, Cherokee Nation Territory with the age of 78, born in New York, a widow. The 1880 census record at Florence confirms that age and place of birth, so it may be that the family separated. John H. Youngs was considerably older than Artimicia, and if he is in fact the John H. Youngs who is in the Cherokee Nation Territory in 1900, then he had been previously married and had older children. This is a puzzle that still needs some work. Speaking of puzzles, anyone who enjoys them will have fun working on Artimicia's Youngs descedannts. Her son, and a few of his six children, all had multiple marriages (one granddaughter was married five times), to spouses who also had multiple marriages which added step-children to the confusion. Newspaper notices, including but not limited to obituaries, are needed to solve he puzzle of Artimicia's descendants through the 20th century.

From the above, it is apparent that there are no living direct male descendants of Cornelius Brower. That of course eliminates the possibility of locating and enlisting a male descendant interested in a Y-DNA test to help determine which ancestral family in New York Cornelius Brower is a member of. Cornelius Brower's ancestry has not been determined. Land records first place him in Madison County in 1837, and he is found on the 1840 U. S. census at Georgetown, Madison County, with a household of two males ages 5-9, one male age 30-39, one female age 20-29 and one female age 70-79, which would describe himself, his wife Roxie, sons Charles and Norman and perhaps a widowed mother or mother-in-law. Madison County, which was created in 1806 out of Chenango County and saw people and families settle there who came from the east via the Mohawk River and Erie Canal, some of whom had come from locations further downstate along the Hudson River (Dutchess County for example). The given name Cornelius is found among the descendants of both Willem Brouwer of Beverwijck and Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L. I., and our Cornelius Brower could belong to either. His birth year of circa 1808 or 1809 does not line up with any other Cornelius Brouwer, Brower or Brewer that I have in my database. A few trees on claims that he is a son of a Cornelius Brower and  Betsey Prentice. I am not familiar with this couple and none of the trees provide credible sources. The elder Cornelius Bower is claimed to have been born about 1788. The only Cornelius Brower I know of that might match this was the son of Nazareth Brouwer and his first wife, Ginney Brouwer, who was born 13 September 1788 and baptized at New Hackensack in 1798 (when he was age 10). This Cornelius, however, died 8 April 1808, which would mean that he was not yet 20 years old. Still, it's possible he could have married and had a posthumous son born later in 1808 (the trees give Cornelius' birth as 19 November 1808, but don't site a source). Betsey Prentice is claimed to have been born c.1789, and died in 1834. But again, I have yet to encounter this couple independently in any reliable record. Perhaps this can be used as a clue, but for now, as of this writing, the parents and ancestry of Cornelius Brower of Hamilton, New York, is unknown.

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