Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Monday, April 14, 2014

Brewere Family Deed

File no. 49 from Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Court Papers, Part II, is a deed involving the Bruere (recorded as Brewere) Family of Upper Freehold.

No. 49, Brewere Deed

In this deed dated 2 April 1808, Sarah Brewere, the widow of James Brewere, who died on 19 April 1807, quitclaims real estate to John H. Brewere, Price Brewere, James Brewere, Richard Brewere, Jonathan Brewere,and their heirs. The grantees in this deed were all sons of James and Sarah Bruere.

It had been mentioned previously that Part II of the Abstracts of Early Monmouth County Deeds had been grouped, by William B. Bogardus, as those that most likely referred to descendants of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, Long Island. This file is one case in which that is not correct. James Bruere is not a descendant of Adam Brouwer. He is a son of Peter Bruere who came to America, first arriving at New York City, in 1709. Peter Bruere settled at Upper Freehold in Monmouth County where he became a very large land owner. The spelling of the family name is generally accepted as BRUERE, however, records from the colonial period often spell the name differently. In this example it is spelled, BREWERE, but I have also seen it as BREWER and BRUER.

James Bruere was born 9 February 1751 in Monmouth County, New Jersey. He is the only known son of Peter Bruere, whose wife was Ellinor Price, a daughter of David Price. James Bruere's wife was Sarah Horsefell, and she was a daughter of John Horsefell and Ruth Rogers. James and Sarah Bruere had eight children, six sons and two daughters. Descendants are known for four of the sons, John Horsful Bruere, Peter Bruere, Price Bruere and Jonathan Bruere. The daughters, Mary and Ruth were also married. Mary was married to Joseph Holmes, while Ruth married Senica Sennickson. Both left descendants.

Peter Bruere, the father of James, was a son of Jacques Bruyere and Louise Doussot. Research on the first generation of this family was conducted and published by Mary Emma Burt and Robert Eugene Burt in Jacque Bruyere, a French Huguenot and Descendants (Baltimore: Gateway Press, 1997). A digital version can be viewed online at the FamilySearch website. According to the Burts, Peter Bruere was born on 10 August 1697 at Greifenthal, then in the German Palatinate, which is now a center in Lahn-Dill-Kries in Hesse, Germany (a Kries is a district, while Hesse is a present day German state). He was baptized at the Reformed Church of Daubhausen.

Peter's sisters, Jeanne and Susanne, and his brother Jacque, are recorded in New York City on a list of Palatines in the city in 1710/11*. A birth and baptism records for another son of Jacque Bruyere, named Jean, was also found at Daubhausen by the Burts, however, there is no evidence that Jean made the trip to America. It is suggested by the Burts that Jacque and Louise Bruyere either died during the voyage to America or shortly after arriving. The Burts state that Peter's sister, Susanne was married to William Baker, Sr., while no marriage has been found for Jeanne. There is also no further record found for Peter's brother, Jacque Bruyere, although if he remained in the New York City area (which would include Westchester Co., Long Island and northern New Jersey) his name could have been anglicized as James Brewer, or even dutchified as Jacob Brouwer. Given the fact that there are still numerous unplaced Brouwers, Browers, and Brewers from the colonial period in the greater New York City area, it may be that Peter's brother, Jacque Bruyere, survived into adulthood and left descendants.

To date, no known descendant of Peter Bruere has joined the Brewer DNA Project. It would be a valuable addition to future research regarding this family, and for Brouwer, Brower and Brewer research in general, if we could get a direct male descendant (or two) of Peter Bruere to join the Project and take a Y-DNA test. A Y-DNA genetic signature for the Bruere family would be a great help to current and future researchers.

A chart of some descendants of Peter Bruere, as well as additional info and sources, can be found on the Brouwer Genealogy Database website.

*This list can be found in, O'Callaghan, Edmund Bailey. Lists of Inhabitants of Colonial New York, Excerpted from The Documentary History of the State of New York (Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Pub. Co., 1979, 1989, 1999), pages 184-185. They are recorded as Jeane Bruiere, orph(an), age 18; Jacque, age 15; Susannah, age 6.

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