Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Friday, November 30, 2012

"The Great Mount Brewer Expedition"

Mount Brewer, a 13,576 foot peak in the Great Western Divide of California's Sierra Nevada range, was named for William Henry Brewer (1828-1910), who in 1864 worked on the first California Geological Survey. William Henry Brewer is a descendant of Adam Brouwer and he was mentioned in a previous post on his grandfather, Nazareth Brouwer (1756-1817).

William Henry Brewer
A couple of months back I was contacted by Arthur Brewer Matthews, a great-grandson of William Henry Brewer who passed on a couple of items that might be of interest to others. First, we have a newspaper account of a 1970 climb of Mt. Brewer by a team of his great-grandchildren.

The Great Mount Brewer Expedition, Duluth News-Tribune, August 16, 1970

Second is a panorama taken from the top of Mt. Brewer. It's composed of seven images, "stitched" together.

Panoramic view from Mt. Brewer
William Henry Brewer was born on September 14, 1828 at Poughkeepsie, New York. He was a son of Col. Henry Brewer (1804-1880) and Rebecca DuBois (1800-1874). He graduated from Yale University in 1852. He was a botanist, studied natural science in 1855 at the University of Heidelberg in Germany, and headed the first California Geological Survey which was conducted in 1864. He was later, the first Chair of Agriculture at Yale's Sheffield Scientific School. He participated in other expeditions, including one to Greenland in 1869, and one to Alaska in 1899. He authored, Up and Down California in 1860-1864.

William Henry Brewer was married twice. His first wife, Angelina Jameson, died after giving birth to their son, Edward J. Brewer, who died himself at about six weeks of age. William's second wife was Georgiana Robinson (married in 1868), and the couple had four children, all of whom reached adulthood. William Henry Brewer died on November 2, 1910 at New Haven, Connecticut. Arthur has provided a link to his family tree at

The Brouwer Ancestry of William Henry Brewer

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