Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Friday, January 31, 2014

Sale of Real Estate from the Estate of David Brewer

File No. 37 from Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a one page file regarding the sale of lands from the estate of David Brewer, of Monmouth County, New Jersey.

No. 37. Estate of David Brewer

In this document we see Ann Brewer and Isaac Brewer, executors of (the estate of) David Brewer, seek permission to sell a certain tract or parcel of woodland of about eighty acres. The proceeds are to be used to pay debts.

This David Brewer has been mentioned before in posts on this website. He is a son of William Brewer and Sarah Allen, was born in 1758, and wrote his will on 16 August 1804. Ann Brewer is David's wife, Ann Morris. Isaac Brewer is their son.

This request was made in the April 1810 term of the Monmouth County Orphans Court, and is found in Book D of that court's records.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Index to War of 1812 Pension Files

This file from the William B. Bogardus Collection contains a few pages from Index to the War of 1812 Pension Files, by Virgil D. White, 1989.

MIL II-6 Index War of 1812 Pension Files

There are a number of men named Brewer and Brower found on these pages. Some additional information and sources for War of 1812 Pension Files can be found at FamilySearch under, US War of 1812 Pension Records. In addition, has a War of 1812 Pension Application Files Index, 1812-1815. The resource requires a paid subscription.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files

File MIL RR-112 from the William B. Bogardus Collection, is pages from Genealogical Abstracts of Revolutionary War Pension Files, Volume 1, by Virgil D. White (National Historical Publishing Co., 1990).

MIL RR-112 Brewer Rev War Pension File Abstracts VDWhite

There are four pages with numerous BREWERs, one BROUWER (Garret) and six BROWERs. The veterans are from states all along the eastern seaboard, from New England and New York, to the Carolinas.

Pension Files of Revolutionary War veterans, and their widows and heirs, have long been available online at Heritage Quest, a site that is accessible for free through a subscribing institution (such as a public Library). Not all that long ago, began access to digital images of Revolutionary War pension files as well. The files found at contain many pages that are not found on the files available at Heritage Quest. A paid subscription is required to access the collection through

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Peter Brewer and Elizabeth Stone, Dutchess and Greene Counties, New York

There are still a few Brewer families with roots in the American Colonial period, who have had male descendants participate in the Brewer DNA Project, that have yet to be addressed on this website. They are of particular interest because in each case the participant joined the Brewer DNA Project with the belief that their ancestry could be traced to either Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, Long Island, or to Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, Long Island. In each of these cases, the Y-DNA test results of the participant proved that their believed ancestries were not possible.

Peter Brewer and his wife, Elizabeth Stone, lived in Dutchess County, and later in Greene County, New York. Their identity originates with the History of Oakland County, Michigan (Philadelphia: L.H. Everts & Co., 1877), where on page 129 is a biography of Peter Brewer of Addison, Oakland Co., Michigan who is stated to be their son. The source of Peter Brewer's birth, 1 April 1740, and of his wife's maiden name, Stone, is this published account which does not supply supporting documentation or sources. The biography further states that Peter Brewer was born in Holland and came to America at the age of 21, and first landed at New York City, where he remained until 1767 and then married Elizabeth Stone and removed to Westchester County, New York. At the close of the Revolutionary War, they settled in Dutchess County, New York. I have been unable to verify any of what was just summarized with actual records.

What is known, is that in 1771 (prior to the Revolutionary War) a Peter Brewer is found on the tax rolls in the Southern Precinct of Dutchess County (Buck, Clifford M., comp.; Kelly, Arthur and Nancy Kelly editor. Dutchess County, NY Tax Lists. Rhinebeck, NY: Kinship, 1990, page 263). Found on the same list is a John Brewer, and both are followed by the notation, "to Fredericksburgh." In other words, after 1771 both Peter Brewer and John Brewer moved to Fredericksburgh, or Fredericksburg (without the H), Dutchess County, New York. Also on this list is a Nathaniel Stone (page 278) who is found there from 1759 until 1771, and he also went "to Fredericksburgh." Peter Brewer, John Brewer and Nathaniel Stone are found on the tax lists at Fredericksburgh, Dutchess County, from 1772 through 1775 (pages 283, 291). Peter Brewer is found on the 1790 U.S. Census at "Fredericksontown," Dutchess Co., New York, with a household of 2 males over 16, 4 males under 16, and 5 females. In 1820, he is found at Hunter, Greene Co., New York, with a household of 2 males 26-45, 1 male over 45, and 1 female over 45. No will or probate file has been found for Peter Brewer. The names and birth dates of his children all come from secondary accounts of researchers who were apparently getting their information from D.A.R. applications. For what it is worth, here is a family group sheet for Peter Brewer and Elizabeth Stone. It is suggested that any researchers of this family seek out additional records confirming dates and other details found here.

Peter Brewer is stated to have died on 22 March 1804. This date comes from an Application for Membership to the Daughters of the American Revolution (D.A.R.) filed by a Mrs. Carmen Townsend Wallace in 1962. The History of Oakland County, Michigan, simply states Peter's death as "in 1804." The D.A.R. application claims that Peter served during the Revolutionary War with the Albany County Militia. This claim cannot be substantiated and is almost certainly incorrect. Militias are raised locally, and in 1776, a man living in Dutchess County, New York would not enlist to serve with the Albany County Militia. There were at least one or two other men named Peter Brewer, living in Albany County at the time of the Revolutionary War, and this service most certainly belongs to one of them.

Correspondence that was found in the files lent to me by William B. Bogardus, between Bill and a few different correspondents, tended to lean towards the conclusion that Peter Brewer, based on the belief that he was originally from Westchester County, New York, was a descendant of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L.I., and that he was most likely the Petrus Brouwer, a.k.a. Peter Brewer, baptized on 3 June 1740 at the Old Dutch Church of Sleepy Hollow in Tarrytown, a son of Johannes Brouwer and Elizabeth Concklin. Peter Brewer of Dutchess and Greene Counties is not Petrus Brouwer, son of Johannes Brouwer. This Petrus Brouwer (the son of Johannes Brouwer) married Annatie Mabie, and was deceased by 19 October 1778. See the Brouwer Genealogy Database for details and sources.

In 2006 a direct male descendant of Peter Brewer and Elizabeth Stone took a Y-DNA test with the Brewer DNA Project. The test results of the descendant did not match any of the members of the project who were known descendants of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus. The descendant's haplogroup was shown to be R1a1 (R-M198), while descendants of Adam Brouwer belong to Haplogroup E1b1b (E-M35.1). It is apparent from the Y-DNA test results, that the participant, and therefore is earliest known Brewer ancestor, Peter Brewer, cannot be descendants of Adam Brouwer. Ideally we should have at least two descendants of Peter Brewer (preferably descended from different sons of Peter) tested before assuming this one test to be conclusive. In this case, however, the tested descendant knew of no reason to suspect a non-paternity event (NPE), such as an adoption or illegitimate birth, in his own direct lineage back to Peter Brewer. We would, however, look forward to the testing of any other direct male descendants (Y-DNA test) of Peter Brewer. (Interested descendants should contact the administrators of the Brewer DNA Project).

As of now, the ancestry of Peter Brewer remains unknown. It is certainly possible, perhaps likely, that the account in History of Oakland County, Michigan was incorrect and Peter was not "born in Holland." He may have come to the area of Fredericksburg, Dutchess County, New York from New England. Many of the original families who settled at Fredericksburg, New York (which has since fragmented into the towns of Kent and Carmel in Putnam County) were from Connecticut and Massachusetts. They established the West Philippi, or Old Gilead Church (Congregationalist) there just prior to 1745.

Descendants of Peter Brewer and Elizabeth Stone were initially found in Hunter, Greene County, New York (where Peter and Elizabeth apparently died), and also in Yates County in western New York State, as well as Michigan. A simple descendant chart is now online, and info and sources for some descendants can be found at the Brouwer Genealogy Database (look Peter Brewer up on the Unplaced page).

The Brewer DNA Project looks forward to hearing from any other descendants of Peter Brewer and Elizabeth Stone, who would like to participate in the effort to discover the correct ancestry of Peter Brewer.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Samuel Brewer, Mortgage in Somerset Co., New Jersey, 1766

This file is from the William B. Bogardus Collection. It was labeled as LAN SS-238. It is a copy of a page from the Somerset County Genealogical Quarterly, vol. 3, no. 1, "First Book of Mortgages, Somerset County."

First Book of Mortgages, Somerset Co., Samuel Brewer

The mortgage names "Samuel Brewer and Margaret, his wife, of Millstone...Innholder." The abstract does not include some of the details of this agreement. My assumption is that Samuel and Margaret Brewer are taking a mortgage out on their property, and the lender is Peter Schenk, also of Millstone, a merchant. The abstract describes the property, and lists his neighbors as Edmund Lesley (Leslie), Peter Wilson, Benjamin Thomson, Samuel Reed (deceased), William Spader, and Smith (possibly Adam Smith, as per the footnote). Samuel Brewer had pchased the property from Teunis Rynierson, but the date of the purchase is not given.

This Samuel Brewer is believed to have been the son of Willem Brouwer and his second wife Martha Boulton. Samuel was baptized on 25 August 1706 at Breuckelen (Brooklyn). William J. Hoffman, in "Brouwer Beginnings," The American Genealogist, vol. 23, pp. 205-206, citing an account of Samuel in Our Home, equates Willem Brouwer's son Samuel with the Samuel Brewer whose wife was Margaret and who had a child baptized at Raritan (in fact they had two, one in 1732 and one in 1735, both named Annate). Assuming Hoffman is correct, Samuel would be a grandson of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L. I.

In the past I had theorized that Samuel could be a son of Derck Brouwer and Hannah Daws, and a grandson of Jan Brouwer of Flatlands. This was based on the purely circumstantial evidence that Samuel had his children baptized at Raritan and during the same period in which sons (or believed sons) of Derck Brouwer also had children baptized there. As of yet, no factual evidence has been found to back this theory, and for now I would defer to Hoffman, and continue with the assumption that Samuel is a son of Willem Brouwer.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Mary Gifford, Heir of Isaac Brewer

Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, file no. 36 is a document from Monmouth County Misc., Book C, page 181.

No. 36, Mary Gifford, Heir of Isaac Brewer

In this document, Mary Gifford, of Howell Twp., Monmouth Co., New Jersey, grants power of attorney to Joseph W. Fleming. The document is dated 3 March 1836. Mary Gifford, states that she is the "mother, and only surviving lawful heir of Isaac Brewer, deceased, of the city and county of Philadelphia, in the State of Pennsylvania, who died in the County of Monmouth, State of New Jersey in February 1834." Mary Gifford is appointing Joseph W. Fleming, of Monmouth Co., to handle the settlement of Isaac Brewer's estate.

The principals here, Mary Gifford and Isaac Brewer, have not been identified and they do not appear in the Brouwer Genealogy Database. The information provided above, by Mary Gifford, tells us that she is the mother of Isaac Brewer who died in 1834 in Philadelphia. She describes herself as his only lawful heir which tells us that Isaac was not married (or was a widower), and had no living children of his own. It can also be deduced from Mary's description, that she was married to a man named Brewer (Isaac's father), and was afterwards married to a man name Gifford (the name she is using in the document).

With the information above, I am first led to the family of David Brewer (1758-1804) and Ann Morris, of Monmouth County, New Jersey. Among their children is a son named Isaac (died before 1816, whose wife's name is said to be Margaret), and a daughter Elizabeth, who was married to Annamiah Gifford. The family lived in Monmouth County, New Jersey. David Brewer is a grandson of Adam Brewer (1696-1768/69) and Deborah Allen of Monmouth County, and a descendant of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, Long Island. I suspect that when, or if, Isaac Brewer who died in 1834 in Philadelphia, and his mother, Mary Gifford, are identified, they will find their place to be among the descendants of Adam Brewer and Deborah Allen.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Indenture between John Brower of Flatlands and Peter Brower, 1700

This file, found in Box 5 of the William B. Bogardus Collection, was labeled as LAN II-55. It is an indenture dated 22 April 1700, in which John Brower of Flatlands conveyed property to Peter Brower of the same place. In this deed, "John Brower" is Jan Brouwer of Flatlands, and "Peter Brower" is his son, Pieter Brouwer.

John Brower to Peter Brower Indenture 1700

The file is a transcript of the indenture that was found in the file of William A. D. Eardeley, at the Queens Borough Public Library in Jamaica, Long Island. It is not new information. This indenture has been known of and has been mentioned previously. Source citations for an abstract and the original can be found at the Brouwer Genealogy Database, under Jan Brouwer's profile.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Bergen County, New Jersey Taxpayers, 1777-1797

From the William B. Bogardus Collection. Bergen County Taxpayers, 1777-1797. The PDF was scanned from photocopied pages. The source is given as T. L. C. Genealogy of Miami, Florida, 1990.

Bergen County Taxpayers, 1777-1797

The pages included here are those which include the names Brewer and Brower, but other familiar names of early Bergen County, New Jersey families are found here as well. Many who are familiar with the Brouwer families will also recognize the names Brevoort, Brinkerhoff, and Briant (Bryant).

No attempt has yet been made to try and identify the Brewers and Browers on these pages. At quick glance though, they appear to be, primarily, descendants of Adam Brouwer's sons, Pieter Brouwer, Abraham Brouwer, and Nicholas Brouwer.

Friday, January 17, 2014

The Hendrick Brouwer House in Albany

Here is a copy of an article by Dr. Susan Jane Staffa, "A New Old House Reveals an Older Oldest House in Schenectady," as it appeared in the Dutch Settlers Society of Albany Yearbook, 1984-1987, Vol. 49, pp. 25-27. Apparently it had originally been published in "The Stockade Spy," a publication of the Stockade Association of Schenectady. This copy is from the William B. Bogardus Collection.

LAN SS-196 Hendrick Brouwer House

Hendrick Brouwer, baptized in 1652 in Amsterdam, was a son of Willem Brouwer who lived at Beverwijck (later Albany, New York) until his death in 1668. Hendrick, who was married to Marritie Pieterse Borsboom, died in very late 1706 or early 1707. Hendrick lived in Schenectady, and his house on the east side of Church Street, is well known and has been written about previously.

This article is the most interesting account I have yet read on the subject of Hendrick Brouwer's house. The reasoning used by the author to arrive at certain conclusions are in themselves valuable techniques that may be new to many family genealogists and historians.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

New Website: Brewer DNA Project Pedigrees

The Brewer DNA Project at Family Tree DNA is a Surname Project and now has well over 200 members. As a Surname Project our interest is to study the different Y-Chromosome (Y-DNA) lineages associated with families named BREWER, BROWER, BRUER, BROUWER, etc. The Brewer DNA Project was started by Grant Johnston back in 2005. The current Administrator for the Project is Richard Brewer, and myself (Chris Chester) and Terry White, are co-administrators.

Recently, in an effort to better serve the members of our project, and to hopefully bring new members in, we have engaged in a bit of website cleaning, and began with creating a new website to better present to our members and potential members, the pedigrees (or lineages) represented by males who have taken Y-DNA tests. The result is the Brewer DNA Project Pedigrees website.

At the new Brewer DNA Project Pedigrees website we have divided the tested participants and their lineages into (currently) twelve Groups. The link for each Group, found on the left of the Home page, will take you to that Group's individual page where the pedigrees are listed, and identified by kit number. The corresponding Y-DNA test results, also identified by kit number, are still found at the original Brewer DNA Project website under the tab, Y-DNA Results. Note that there is both a "Classic" and "Colorized" option for viewing the results table. The "Colorized" option highlights the allele values that vary from the modal value for each different marker.

The pedigrees were submitted by members who participated by taking a Y-DNA test. The pedigrees, in conjunction with the Y-DNA test results, help us identify Groups. Once we have at least two members who have close Y-DNA test results and who have similar known, or believed to be known, pedigrees, we can define a Group. Certainly the more tested members we have in a particular Group, the better we can define the Group, and so, we are always looking for new participants. As stated above, we have currently identified twelve groups. It is our goal to identify more in the future, but presently those twelve groups are:

Adam Brouwer - Currently 20 members (a 21st is pending some more research), 19 of who have submitted pedigrees. The Haplogroup E, to which descendants belong, is relatively uncommon in northern Europe (Adam Brouwer's origins are in Cologne). Currently this is the only Group in the Brewer DNA Project who belongs to this haplogroup. (See the note dated January 19, 2014 below)

Adam Brown Brewer - There are three members in this Group, two of whom have provided pedigrees. Adam Brown Brewer's origins are stated to be in Randolph Co., North Carolina. The descendants belong to Haplogroup R1a which is very common in central and eastern Europe, and Scandinavia. More descendants are needed here for testing, and more traditional genealogical research is needed on Adam Brown Brewer himself.

 Ambrose Brewer - There are seven members in this group, six of who have provided pedigrees. Their haplogroup R1b is the most frequent Y-Chromosome haplogroup found in western Europe. Some descendants show in their pedigrees, an ancestry back to a couple named George Bewer and Sarah Lanier, which is also claimed by the Brewer-Lanier Group (below) as their earliest known ancestors.

Arthur Brewer - Five members belong to this group, and four have submitted pedigrees. Of these four, three trace their ancestry to Arthur Brewer, born ca. 1765, perhaps in Martin Co., North Carolina. Each of the three are descendants of different sons of Arthur, and this is exactly the type of data we seek to collect for a project (multiple tests for different lineages from the same common ancestor). The descendants belong to Haplogroup J2 whose largest concentrations are found in western Asia, more specifically in Anatolia (modern Turkey) the nearby Mediterranean region, and the Arabian peninsula.

Brewer/Lanier -  By far, this group has the largest number of members. Their pedigrees have not yet been updated for the new website, and a link is provided on the page to the Brewer-Lanier site which currently hosts the pedigrees. By my count we have 57 members in this group. I believe we have pedigrees for 39 of the members, a few of who have the surname WHITE, but who are certain recent cousins of the BREWERs in this Group. The earliest ancestor is claimed to be George Brewer (b. 1685), who with his wife, Sarah Lanier, were at Brunswick Co., Virginia in the early 1700s. Some of the pedigrees have not been able to trace their ancestries completely back to George Brewer using traditional research, but the Y-DNA test results place them in this group. The descendants belong to the larger Haplogroup I1, which has been described as the original paternal lineage of Nordic Europe. It is clear that the members of the Brewer/Lanier Group and those of the Ambrose Brewer Group (above) are not related, yet some members of both groups claim George Brewer and Sarah Lanier as their ancestors.

Jacob Brewer - There are two members in this group, we have pedigrees for both, and would like to see more descendants join. Jacob Brewer lived at Unity, Westmoreland Co., Pennsylvania, and some descendants went to Ohio and then Indiana during the first half of the 1800s. Jacob Brewer was expanded upon in the post of December 20, 2013, on this website. The descendants belong to the Haplogroup I2b1 which has its highest concentrations in western and north-central Europe (Germany) and Scandinavia (especially Denmark and Sweden).

Jan Brouwer - We have 28 members in this group (27 if we count a pair of tested brothers as one), including two who are related to the American descendants of Jan Brouwer at a time previous to Jan Brouwer's appearance in America. The other surnames found among the members of this Group are ROSE, OLSEN, EMBODY and MacDOUGALL. There are pedigrees for 24 members. Descendants belong to Haplogroup I2b1 (concentrated in western, north-central Europe and Scandinavia). Descendants of Jan Brouwer carry a unique STR 565 value which is found when a Y-DNA67 marker test is completed. This rare value was the key to identifying the two pre-American cousins in the Jan Brouwer Group.

Jeremiah Brewer, NC -  There are two members in this group, and both have submitted pedigrees. We need additional descendants who are interested in being tested to join. Jeremiah Brewer was born about 1787 and lived in Chatham Co., North Carolina. The descendants belong to Haplogroup R1b1, the same as the Ambrose Brewer Group listed above. However, there is enough difference between the two groups to assume that any common ancestor pre-dates the colonial period in America.

Joel Brewer - This group has three members, each a descendant of a different son of Joel Brewer (b. 1826, lived in Polk Co., Georgia). All three have provided us with pedigrees. The descendants also belong to Haplogroup R1b1, but any common ancestor with the Ambrose Brewer or Jeremiah Brewer Groups is far in the past.

John Brewer, Sudbury, MA - Two members are in this group, both have provided pedigrees. This is our only group descended from a New England Brewer family (I personally wish we could descendants of other New England Brewer families get involved with this project). They also belong to the Haplogroup R1b1, but are not related to the other groups with the same haplogroup (mentioned above) within a traceable genealogical time period.

Unassigned Members - We currently have 47 members who are "unassigned." That is, there is no other Brewer male with whom the tested member has a match. The page has been organized by haplogroups and eleven members have provided pedigrees. It is hoped that others who recognize the names in these pedigrees will join and take Y-DNA tests so that additional groups can be established. We would also encourage those who have not submitted pedigrees to do so.

Need Y-DNA Test - We have created this page for members who have joined the Brewer DNA Project because they have a Brewer somewhere in their ancestry, but have not been able to locate a male Brewer relation to take a Y-DNA test. There are two pedigrees here. One leads us back to a Jeremiah Brewer (b. ca. 1759) who lived in Bibb Co., Alabama. The second pedigree takes us back to the Brewer family found in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland beginning in the 1600s. We would like to find direct male descendants of any of the Brewer men listed in these pedigrees who are interested in taking a Y-DNA test.
We created this last page because over the past year a number of persons have joined the Brewer DNA Project, yet they have not ordered a Y-DNA test kit. In addition, none of them had contacted any of the administrators with an explanation or reason for their joining the project. I guess it has to be emphasized that the Brewer DNA Project is a Surname Project, in other words, a Y-DNA Project. We do not investigate direct maternal lineages (mtDNA testing) nor do we involve ourselves with autosomal DNA testing (Family Finder). We would love to have each of these new "non-Y-DNA" members find a Brewer relation willing to be tested. This would justify their joining the Project. In an effort to help, we have recently asked each to supply us with a pedigree. If their pedigree does not match up with an already existing Group, then we will add it to the Need Y-DNA Test page in the hope that it will be discovered by some other descendant who would like to join. We ask, that if you would like to join the Brewer DNA Project, yet do not presently have a male Brewer relation who will take a Y-DNA test, that you at least provide us with a pedigree of your direct Brewer ancestry. Our intention is to help find a relation who will take the Y-DNA test. But, we cannot help you unless you help us by providing your Brewer pedigree.

- A note on the haplogroups mentioned above - In each group I briefly described the larger haplogroup which the members belonged to. The Y-DNA testing available from Family Tree DNA can narrow down a participants haplogroup to a subclade of that group, and these subclades are mentioned on the individual pages.

- A handful of members have chosen not to submit pedigrees. While submitting one is not a requirement for taking a Y-DNA test, it is a hindrance to identifying the group you might belong to. It also frustrates the general advancement of understanding these groups. Submitting a pedigree is beneficial to you, and to others, who might be unsure of their correct ancestry. Y-DNA testing works best when it it combined with traditional genealogical research, and both are best used when they are shared with others.

The administrators can be contacted through the Brewer DNA Project webpage.

Update, January 19, 2014: Three pedigrees were not included on the original Pedigree Page for Adam Brouwer. They have since been added. The Project has 24 descendants of Adam Brouwer, 23 have submitted pedigrees.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Brewer and Brower in Albany Deeds Index

We're in the final stretch of sorting through the massive amount of material received from William B. Bogardus back in early 2009. Here we have photocopied pages from Albany County (New York) County Clerk, State of New York Deeds, Index, 1630-1966. The pages are those in which persons named Brewer and Brower are found.

Brewer and Brower in Albany Deeds Index

The copies were made from FHL films #0464896 and #0463545. The Family History Library has since made these films available online through their FamilySearch website. They are found in the database titled, New York Land Records, 1630-1975. A search feature has not been created for this database and you will have to browse through the records. In doing so, you will probably be able to download better images than what has been placed online above.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Follow Brouwer Genealogy on Google+

A companion page has been created for the Brouwer Genealogy blog on Google+. If you have a Google+ account you can now follow Brouwer Genealogy at the Brouwer Genealogy Google+ Page.

Every new post made to this blog will appear in the "stream" on the Google+ page as soon as it is posted. In addition I will add links to other pages, articles, photos, etc., that I find online relating to genealogy in general. I also may periodically go back in time and feature a post from the past by "sharing" it to the Google+ page. Scroll through the "stream" and see if there is anything of further interest to you. Come back often because more will be added.

Technology with regards to the way things are viewed online is changing, and changing pretty quickly and I think for the better. Many long standing websites are adapting and changing with it, and are attempting to provide a cleaner and easier visual experience for their readers. An example is the New York Times which just recently changed the appearance of it's website. By the way, the New York Times has a Google+ page too.

The main Brouwer Genealogy blog page has also been cleaned up. The long scroll line of links is gone from the right column and they have largely been condensed into the "Pages" category you see there in their place. The number of blogs appearing on the main page at any one time has been reduced to six. This makes for a shorter page and quicker loading. The blog archive, as well as "top ten posts," will still appear on the right. The number of categories appearing under "Labels" has been reduced. What you see there are the ones I use the most for locating specific posts from the past. The Search Engine has been changed to one that works (however, it only searches this site, and does not search linked sites as the previous one did, when it worked).

Brouwer Genealogy is now licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike-4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0). All associated database websites, such as The Brouwer Genealogy Database, are also now under this license. Please abide by these terms when using or reproducing and material found on these websites.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Estate of David Brower

File no. 35 from Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a power of attorney given by George Brower to Samuel R. Gaskill. The power of attorney is in regard to the Estate of David Brower.

No. 35. Estate of David Brower

The document is dated 27 October 1846, and the source given is Monmouth County Misc., Book C, pages 337-338.

The George Brower is later in the document referred to as George W. Brower, and it is stated that he is the only heir of Robert Brower, deceased. At the time, George W. Brower was living in Burlington County, New Jersey. His father, Robert Brower, had purchased land, of his father's estate, in 1810, so it is likely that Robert was born prior to 1790. A date of birth has not been found. Robert Brower, was a son of David Brower (or Brewer) who wrote his will 16 August 1804. It was proved 15 October 1804. David was a son of William Brewer and Sarah Allen, and was a grandson of Adam Brewer (1696-1768/69) of Shrewwsbury, and a great-great-grandson of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L.I. David Brower's wife was Ann Morris. The identity of Robert Brower's wife has not yet been found.

See also, the post of December 13, 2013.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Philip Cooper v. Elazerus Brewer

File no. 34 from Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is from the January 1784 session of the Monmouth County Court of Pleas. It is the case of Philip Cooper bringing suit against Elazerus Brewer for a debt of one hundred and ninety pounds.

No. 34 Philip Cooper v. Elazerus Brewer

This hearing occurred just after the close of the American Revolutionary War when Elazerus was about 54 years old. Elazerus was profiled in the post of December 18, 2013.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Sketches of 17th Century Hollanders

Sketches of 17th Century Hollanders is a website housing the "original research projects" of Cor Snabel and Elizabeth A. Johnson.

Among the original research projects are transcripts of various church records from Amsterdam and Cologne, as well as family sketches of seventeenth-century immigrants from the Netherlands to New Netherland, New York, the South (Delaware) River, and Virginia.

The website is created using a collaborative online workspace created by PBWorks. The Navigator pane on the top right corner is the place to start. It serves as an index and links to the various projects that have been added to the site.

Both Cor and Elizabeth are excellent, and careful researchers, and you will find the work on their site to be among most reliable and credible genealogical research found online today. Over the past couple of years the two have discovered ancestries for a number of immigrants to New Netherland that had previously been unknown. Check the index to see if you might find something new regarding one of your New Netherland ancestors.

Some House Cleaning

I am in the process of cleaning up the Home page of this website. We're taking this long (too long) list of web-links found on the right hand side of the page and condense them into Pages. Every effort will be made to keep the number of Pages to a minimum as well. I've already started, and this should be completed within a few days. So in the near future you will be able to locate the links to other resources and websites, on the right, under the category titled, "Pages".

Simon De Hart House, Gowanus, L.I., 1867

Orphans Court Record of 1812

File no. 33 in Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a record from the July 1812 term of the Monmouth County Orphans Court. It is found in Book D of the Monmouth County Orphan Court Records. The Orphans Court records have been filmed and digital images are now available online through the Family History Library. Please note that there is an error in the abstracted version that is online. The name of John Brewer's widow is Miriam, not Martha.

No. 33 Brewer Orphans Court 1812

This record pertains to the family of John Brewer, born about 1761, son of William Brewer and Sarah Allen. John married Miriam Allen who was born 27 March 1761, and was a daughter of Joseph Allen and Hannah Lippincott. John Brewer wrote is will 6 December 1811, and in it he names his wife and seven children. Of those seven, Miriam Brewer, the widow of John Brewer, petitions the Orphans Court to be appointed as guardian for three, namely, William, Margaret, and Mary. They were the three youngest children and were born between 1798 and 1804. John Brewer's will was proved 5 January 1812 in Monmouth County.

Some research on descendants of John Brewer and Miriam Allen, along with source citations, can be found on the Brouwer Genealogy Database website.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Elazerus Brewer and George Brewer, Debts in Monmouth Co., New Jersey

File no. 32 from Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a document pertaining to debts owed by Elazerus and George Brewer to Joseph Wardell.

No. 32. Elazerus Brewer, George Brewer, Debts 

The PDF will have to be downloaded and rotated for viewing. The document is someone unclear in its exact meaning, however, the judgement, action, or whatever it might properly be called, is from the January 1776 term at the Court of Common Pleas at Freehold, New Jersey. The source provided for this document was described as, Supreme Court Office of Burlington, Book H of Judgements, folio 109.

Elazerus and George Brewer were brothers. Elazerus Brewer was covered in the post of December 18, 2013

George Brewer was said to have been born 26 May 1728 in Shrewsbury, New Jersey. His wife was Lydia Clark and they were married with a New Jersey license dated 25 January 1764. Both were from Monmouth County at the time of their marriage. Thus far, one child has been discovered, a son named George.

On 7 January 1788, Lydia Brewer requested, at the Shrewsbury Monthly Meeting, a certificate for her son, George Brewer, who has been placed with Samuel Clark of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. From this record it can be taken that the elder George Brewer was probably deceased by this date. His son, George, would have been a minor in 1788. This is also the first, and so far only, connection I have found for a movement for a descendant of Adam Brouwer from Monmouth County, New Jersey to Philadelphia. In 1810 a George Brewer is enumerated on the 1810 U.S. census at Northern Liberties, Philadelphia Co., Pennsylvania, with a household of 4 males under 10, 1 male 10-15, 1 male 26-44, 1 female 16-25, 1 female 26-44 and 1 female over 45.

The William Brewer/Brower of Philadelphia (post of October 29, 2013), who is a known genetic descendant of Adam Brouwer (Y-DNA testing of a descendant with the Brewer DNA Project), who may have been born between 1794 and 1805 (although an age of 77 years is recorded for him on the 1850 census), may be a son (or a brother if in fact the older age is correct) of the child, George Brewer, who was placed with Samuel Clark in 1788. To date, no other reasonable leads for the ancestry of William Brewer has yet been found.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Seen Elsewhere Today - A Map of Long Island

Today the blog of the Brooklyn Historical Society has an image of a map of Long Island, circa 1850.

BHS - Map of the Month - January 2014

It is described as a "Travellers Map of Long Island," and was published by J. H. Colton, and there is a link to a citation from New York University Libraries. The resolution isn't too good when enlarge the image, but still, the locations, Flatlands, New Utrecht, Gravesend and others can be made out. I can pick out a road, which I believe would now be Northern Blvd., that skirts just under Flushing, Great Neck, Cow Neck (where I grew up), then Oyster Bay (the village) and Huntington. The road below that (also west to east) would be Jericho Tpk. It goes through Jamaica and Westbury, and continues on to Riverhead.

If you have a fondness for Brooklyn, this is a nice website.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Adam Brewer, Shrewsbury Monthly Meeting, 1743

File no. 31 from Abstracts of Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a record from the Monthly Meeting of Friends (Quakers) at Shrewsbury, New Jersey, 2: 3rd month, 1743.

No. 31. Adam Brewer, Shrewsbury Monthly Meeting, 1743

The copy of the document was given to William B. Bogardus by a correspondent (identity not known) who states the source as Shrewsbury Monthly Meeting Records, 1732-1756, microfilm roll MR-NY140, Friends Historical Library, Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania. "Filmed by Mormons" is added, so I take it that the records were filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah for the Family History Library. The best guess would be that these records are found on FHL film #17351, items 3-6.

In this record, Adam Brewer is confessing to the act of fornication, which in today's world would equate to "pre-marital sex." The record is valuable in that it helps us determine the approximate birth date of Adam Brewer's youngest child, Magdalena.

The Adam Brewer of this record died before 15 March 1769, and is generally considered to be the Adam who was baptized on 29 March 1696 at Breuckelen (Brooklyn), Kings Co., Long Island. The baptism is recorded in the register of the Old First Dutch Reformed Church of Brooklyn, and his parents are written as "Jakop Brouwer, and Annitje Brouwer," the mother being Annetje Bogardus, daughter of Willem Bogardus and Wynnetje Sybrants. Adam Brewer was first married to Deborah Allen and they had nine children who were supposedly recorded in a Bible record first brought to attention in 1923 by William A. D. Eardeley. Adam Brewer's second wife was Catharine Mitchell, and their New Jersey License to marry was dated 12 January 1742. The source for this is: Nelson, William. Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New Jersey. Volume XXII. Marriage Records, 1665-1800. Archives of the State of New Jersey. First Series. Paterson, N.J.: Press Printing and Publishing Co., 1900, page 32. It is not clear, but if this date is in "Old Style" then it more correctly could be written as 12 January 1742/43. The date of the Monthly Meeting in which Adam Brewer confessed to his sin, was (as stated above) 2: 3rd month 1743. This is Quaker terminology (they did not recognize the names of the months January through August as they were derived from non-Christian sources) for 2 May 1743 (the Quakers would have also been using the "Old Style" calendar in that year).

During this time and place (mid 18th century colonial America) the sin of fornication was detected and proved by the birth of a child to an unwed mother, or to a couple who had married, but then had a child born to them within nine months after their marriage date. If Adam and Catharine were married in January 1743, and he was brought to answer to the charge of fornication in May 1743, then in all likelihood a child was born to Adam and Catharine sometime between those dates. That child would be their only known daughter, Magdalena, who is also mentioned in Adam's will dated 17 August 1768.

In the Adam Brewer's will, his daughter Magdalena is described as under age 21(she is to receive £200 when she turns age 21). This creates a bit of uncertainty, as the child born to Adam and Catharine in early 1743 would have been aged 25 in August 1768. Either, Adam was incorrect about Magdalena's age when he wrote his will (something that is not unusual during Adam's time), or, the child born to Adam and Catharine is not Magdalena, but rather some other child who has not yet been discovered or identified. Since we do not have a name, or some other record to identify this child by, my inclination is to assume that the child of 1743 was Magdalena, and the will is simply incorrect. But to be clear, this is something we may never know with any greater degree of certainty. It would be equally reasonable to reconstruct Adam Brewer's family with the inclusion of a child, whose name is unknown, born in early 1743, followed by Magdalena, who would have then been born sometime after August 1747.

Catharine Mitchell was deceased by 22 August 1761, when Adam had a license to marry his third wife, Mary Davis (Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New Jersey. Volume XXII, page 32). I have seen a date of 28 August 1761 for this marriage, but have yet to find a source to support that claim. I would also note that William J. Hoffman, in "Brouwer Beginnings," The American Genealogist v. 24 (1948):30, states that the Adam Brewer who married Catharine Mitchell, is "possibly" the Adam Brouwer who was a son of Hendrick Brouwer and his wife, Elizabeth. I have yet to find any evidence that might support Hoffman's theory.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

DNA Answers at the ISOGG Website

Brouwer Genealogy's resolution for 2014 is to focus more time and effort on expanding the level of awareness of Y-DNA testing as one of the many tools used for genealogical research, and to increase awareness of the Brewer DNA Project. The objective is to get more Brewers, Browers, Brouwers and Bruers, of various ancestries, to join the Brewer DNA Project by taking a Y-DNA test. A good place to start would be to introduce to those who are new to Y-DNA testing, to the website of the International Society of Genetic Genealogy (ISOGG). I would add that this resource should also be of interest to those who have already taken Y-DNA (and other genetic tests). It will help anyone better understand the concepts and science behind genetic testing, and help newcomers get a better understanding of what to expect from the reported results from the various genetic tests.

The ISOGG was founded in 2005 (the same year the Brewer DNA Project was launched). As stated on the website, "the mission of the International Society of Genetic Genealogy is to advocate for and educate about the use of genetics as a tool for genealogical research, and promote a supportive network for genetic genealogists." Membership is not required to utilize the resources that are available on, or through the website. I am not a member. 

Mentioned in the ISOGG's mission statement is the desire to educate about the use of genetics as a tool for genealogical research. A good place for a newcomer, or for anyone wishing to refresh themselves on the basics, is with the "For Newbies" page, accessible from the tabs on the left of the main page. This page has eight links, all of which a new comer to genetic genealogy should take time to explore. Your education starts with this page.

On the "For Newbies" page, the one link that deserves to be highlighted is the "DNA-NEWBIE Educational Components" link. There are twenty-one lessons here, so start with number one which covers the basics. The link here will take you off site to a page called As you scroll down, the first group of links is your basic education to cell biology and DNA replication. There is a lot here, and it is understandable for someone new to genetic genealogy to want to skip over it and just get to the results of their own genetic test. But, if you are taking a Y-DNA test yourself, or investing in a male relation to take one for the purpose of using the results to help solve a genealogy problem or to establish a genealogical relationship, then you should at least read, and bookmark, the page titled, Molecular Genealogy. This page will give you the basics for understanding why we use Y-DNA testing in genetic genealogy. 

Animation of Rotating DNA Structure

Despite having just suggested a short-cut, I still recommend anyone and everyone who is considering a genetic test, to spend the time and make the effort to learn about the concepts behind the tests. In the long run you will be better off for it. Finally, many of the various genetic tests offered by the various testing companies are not cheap. Someone considering taking one has to weigh the monetary cost versus what they hope to learn from their test results, and just how valuable those results will be. I think it is advisable for anyone new to this aspect of genealogical research, to invest the time in some basic understanding of this relatively new tool of genealogical research, before investing their money. The ISOGG website is an excellent place to start.