Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Bibliography of Research in Pre-Revolutionary New York and New Netherland

Research in Pre-Revolutionary New York and New Netherland, A Bibliography, by Sharon L. Brevoort, Genealogical Society of Washtenaw County, Michigan (2001), is a webpage that offers hundreds of titles, sources and web links that would be helpful to anyone researching families in colonial New York and New Netherland. The page is organized into twenty-five categories, such as "Church, Cemetery, Vital Records," "Research Guides, "Lifestyle," etc. Included are numerous Family History Library films, with their film numbers, which can then be quickly and easily accessed at the Family History Library Catalog webpage, using the "film/fiche search" option. Many of the titles listed, such as Minutes of the Orphanmasters of New Amsterdam, can now be found online at Google Books and/or at Internet Archives.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

New Links Page for the William B. Bogardus Collection

The William B. Bogardus page, previously found on the old Brouwer Genealogy website, has been discontinued. It is no longer viewable on the internet. The documents have been re-located to a Google Docs. account, and links to each can now be found at a new location at the Brouwer Genealogy Database website.
It is possible that over the winter months I will be adding a few more documents to this collection.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Brower and Drake extracts from some Ulster Co., N.Y. Churches, 19th Century

The baptism and marriage records involving persons named Brower, Brewer and Drake, were extracted from FHL film #0529192 which contains records transcribed from several churches in Ulster County, New York by Kenneth E. Hasbrouck. The PDF document can now be found online, here.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

1609 The Forgotten History of Hudson, Amsterdam and New York

Published online in 2009 by the Henry Hudson 400 Foundation, "1609 The Forgotten History of Hudson, Amsterdam and New York," by Geert Mak and Russell Shorto, is a short pamphlet covering the events of 1609 and the legendary voyage that brought Henry Hudson to New York harbor, and a concise review of the early events that initiated the transformation a fledgling settlement at the tip of Manhattan Island into humankind's most unique city.  It can be viewed online and can be reached via this link.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Calvin W. Brower, Memoir

The memoir of Calvin W. Brower had previously been made available as a compressed PDF on the William B. Bogardus Collection page of the old Brouwer Genealogy website. The document, as a PDF, has now been placed online at Google Docs. It is a large file and so it must be downloaded in order to be viewed. Please use this link to access the document. The download button is at the top right corner of your screen.
Calvin Wheeler Brower was born January 3, 1841, the son of John Brower and Elizabeth Schofield of Pinegrove, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. He is a descendant of Hubert Brower. Data on Calvin W. Brower, his family and ancestors, can be found on the Brouwer Genealogy Database website.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Samuel Brewer of New York City, Will, 1815

Digital images of the will of Samuel Brewer of New York City, dated 1815 (New York County Surrogate's Court v. 15, p.205) have been placed online.
Identifying this Samuel Brewer had an unexpected outcome. Samuel lived in New York City and in Westchester County, New York. The name, Samuel, is very common among the descendants of Adam Brouwer, and a number of them lived in the greater New York City area. This Samuel Brewer, however, is not one of them. He is not descended from Adam Brouwer, nor is he a descendant of one of the other New Netherland Brouwer families. This Samuel is a New England Brewer, a descendant of John Brewer who was at Cambridge, Massachusetts during the first half of the 17th century. Samuel is a son of James Brewer, born 1740 in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, and his wife Hannah Lee. The couple lived in Westchester County, New York prior to the Revolutionary War (James Brewer, a physician, was killed in 1780, apparently by accident, by fellow Patriots). James Brewer, his family and some descendants, can be found on the Brewer of New England website, and a descendant chart has also been placed online.
I would not be surprised if some of the other unplaced Brewers, found in New York, eventually are found to be of a New England ancestry, rather than a New Netherland ancestry.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Three Books about New Netherland and Dutch New York

I recently received an e-mail from Richard Brewer (administrator of the Brewer DNA Project) with a forwarded e-mail that he had received from Tom Brewer (a participant in the Brewer DNA Project).
Tom Brewer recommended The Island at the Center of the World, by Russell Shorto (2005: Vintage). Shorto's account, which draws upon the large volume of early Dutch records that have been translated over the past decades by Dr. Charles Gehring and others, was a national bestseller when first published.
Richard Brewer adds to this, Dutch New York: The Roots of Hudson Valley Culture, edited by Roger Panetta (2009: Fordham University Press). This book, with numerous illustrations and photos, is a collection of thirteen essays contributed by various writers, and was a companion book to the 2009 exhibition commemorating Henry Hudson's 1609 voyage that brought him up the river that now bears his name.
To the above two mentioned books, I would like to add, The Colony of New Netherland: A Dutch Settlement in Seventeenth-Century America, by Jaap Jacobs (2009: Cornell University Press). In this book the author studies the original Dutch records (not relying on the translations) and describe a wide ranging overview of life in the New Netherland Colony. It too, is very readable (320 pages) and one that I consider a must for anyone researching their early New Netherland ancestors.
All three are in print and are available from major online booksellers.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Adam Brouwer Source Documentation: A Bibliography

"Some Documentation Pertaining to Adam Brouwer, immigrant and early resident of Brooklyn; and as pertains to the use of the name "Berchoven" by some of his children," compiled by William B. Bogardus in 1997, was originally available online at the William B. Bogardus Collection page of the old Brouwer Genealogy website. It can now be found online at my Google Docs page.

Saturday, October 8, 2011


A new web page has been set up to provide access to the images that were previously found on the Images page of the old Brouwer Genealogy website. The new page can be accessed from either the column to the right under "Brouwer, Brower, Brewer Links," or from the main page of the Brouwer Genealogy Database website. The new page provides an index, of sort, with links to the image albums which are stored on Google's photo pages. The "Image" page formerly found on the Brouwer Genealogy website has now been removed and is no longer accessible.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Brewer/Brower found in New York State Vital Records Index

Back in October 2009 I began the project of searching the New York State Vital Records Index for those with the surname Brewer or Brower. Compressed PDFs were posted to this webpage, which will become unavailable by June 2012. The original documents are now available as stand alone webpages (no longer compressed) and links can be found in the column to the right under "Brewer/Brower, New York State Vital Records Index." Unfortunately I have not had the time to add to these pages since last winter, and nothing new is being added with this post. I do hope to get back to them sometime during the coming winter months.
In addition to the lists of Brewers and Browers extracted from the indexes, there were compressed PDFs for a handful of death certificate that I had obtained. Once the old page (and website) are discontinued these certs will cease to be available online.
For background on these records, and how to obtain them, please see New York State Vital Records Index Information & Instructions.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Brouwer Burials in Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York

Brouwer Burials in Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, N. Y. can now be found online at a new location. This document, as a compressed PDF, was originally online and available from the William B. Bogardus Collection page of the old Brouwer Genealogy website. The document can now be viewed directly online from a location at Google Docs. This list was apparently compiled by William J. Hoffman and includes burials up through the mid 1800s. It does not include later 19th century or 20th century burials and therefore should not be considered a complete survey of all the Brouwers buried at Green-Wood Cemetery.

Green-Wood Cemetery is now a National Historic Landmark, and has a website. It was founded in 1838 and is located in what is now the Greenwood Heights section of Brooklyn. The main entrance (pictured above) is at 500 25th Street (at 5th Ave.). Many persons who were living in Manhattan during the 1800s were buried at Green-Wood Cemetery. Paul Goldberger, architect critic for The New Yorker, writing in the New York Times (Nov. 17, 1977) stated, "it is the ambition of the New Yorker to live upon the Fifth Avenue, to take his airings in the Park, and to sleep with his fathers in Green-Wood." Many "notable" persons, including President Theodore Roosevelt, are buried there.