Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Four Remaining Sons of Henry Brewer of Orange and Chatham Counties, North Carolina

Henry2 Brewer (George1) and his son George Brewer were covered in the post of January 9, 2015. In this post we will follow up with Henry's four remaining sons, Henry, Hubbard, Isaac and Oliver.

Henry3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) was mentioned in his father's will and received, "the land and plantaten from sd mouth of cr follow an east course to my back line." From this it can be surmised that Henry received improved land along the creek and adjacent to his father's land. Unfortunately, the will does not name the creek, but we do know that the elder Henry had established himself on the north side of the Haw River (see Paces Mill). Marvin T. Broyhill, Brewer Families of Colonial Virginia, 1626-1776 (1992) covers the son Henry Brewer at page 100 and assigns him the number G32. His account is brief, writes that he was born "1760??" which is a guess, and adds that he was "probably the one who received a federal pension based on his Revolutionary War service [Pension No. S39213]." He is not. The Henry Brewer of this pension application was age 63 in 1823 and was living in Christian Co., Kentucky. He had received 300 acres of land there in 1805. Although not found there on the 1810 U.S. census, the war veteran Henry Brewer was there in 1819 when he first filed an application, and can be found there on the 1820 and 1830 U.S. census records. In 1837 he was in Wilson Co., Tennessee as per his pension file, but so far the trail has run cold after this date. Foy E. Varner, Jr., picks up on the son Henry Brewer in Brewer Families of Southeast America (2003) at page 308. His analysis of the records regarding Henry demonstrates why he cannot be the same man as the Henry Brewer of Christian Co., Kentucky, and will not be repeated here. In short, Henry3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) appears to have remained in Chatham Co., North Carolina his entire life. Henry is found on deeds in Chatham County beginning in 1781. He can be found on the U.S. census there in 1790, 1810 and 1820. In 1830, a Henry Brewer (probably this one) is in Pittsboro, Chatham County, age 60-69. No other persons are listed in the household. On 8 November 1841, administration on the estate of Henry Brewer was granted in Chatham Co. to W. H. Powell, with Isaiah Burnett as fellow bondsman. If Henry was born by 1760 (old enough to convey land in 1781) and died in 1841, he lived into his 80s. On 6 February 1828, Henry Brewer of Chatham Co., conveyed land on the Haw River, to his son (as stated in the deed) Oliver Brewer. The land (100 acres) was bounded by Wm. Williams, Crow's line, Meadow Br., John Brewer and Brittan Brewer. Although he received land in 1828, Oliver is not found on the 1830 U.S. census in Chatham County as a head of household. On 8 January 1833, in Chatham Co., Oliver Brewer was bondsman on the marriage bond of Norris Lindsey and Anna Price. Two men named Oliver Brewer are recorded in Chatham Co., North Carolina in 1840. The first, called Oliver Brewer, has a household of 1 male 30-39, 2 females under 5, 1 female 20-29. The second, called "Oliver G. Brewer," has a household of 1 male under 5, 1 male 20-29, 1 female 20-29. Assuming that the former is Oliver4 Brewer (Henry3, Henry2, George1) then his birth is placed at between 1800 and 1810. In this case, Henry's son Oliver, may well be the Oliver Brewer who can be found in Warren County, Tennessee beginning with the 1850 U.S. census. An Oliver Brewer is found in Warren Co., Tennessee on the 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880 U.S. census records. The ages on the census consistently point to his birth as about 1805 or 1806. His place of birth is consistently recorded as North Carolina. This Oliver Brewer died in Warren Co., Tennessee on 13 June 1889 and is buried in the Pleasant Hill Baptist Church Cemetery. Oliver's wife was Phebe Melton. They had at least ten children, and the youngest, Oliver Franklin Brewer died in 1948. His Tennessee death certificate names his father as Oliver Brewer, and states his father's place of birth as Chatham Co., North Carolina. More evidence is desired, before concluding that the two Oliver Brewers, born at about the same time in the same place, are in fact the same. Perhaps there are answers in land records in either Chatham Co., North Carolina, and/or Warren Co., Tennessee from the period of 1840 to 1850.

 Hubbard3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) is mentioned by Broyhill (1992) at page 100, and is given the number G33. The entry here is brief and incomplete. Varner (2003) covers Hubbard at pages 315-316. Hubbard is identified by his mention in his father's will of 2 September 1778. He received land adjoining Benjamin Brewer who has not been identified. Broyhill guesses at Hubbard's birth as "1736??" He is likely off by a large margin. Hubbard Brewer is found on the 1784 tax roll in Sampson County, North Carolina, and so we can venture that he was born by 1764. A James Brewer is found on the same roll. On 2 January 1787, Hubbard Brewer sold land on the Haw River to Edward Brewer (his cousin, son of Oliver2, George1). This deed calls Hubbard, "of Chatham County." A Hubbard Brewer is found on the 1790 U.S. census in Johnston County, North Carolina with a household of with a household of 2 males under 16, 1 male over 16, 3 females. A Hubbard Bruer is found on the 1800 U.S. census in Fayetteville, Sampson Co., North Carolina with a household of 4 males under 10, 1 male 10-15, 1 male 16-25, 1 male 26-44, 1 female under 10, 2 females 10-15, 1 female 26-44. Although Hubbard is a less common given name, and although I suspect all of the above entries belong to the same man, that suspicion has not been proved. As of this writing it is not known if Hubbard Brewer left descendants, although I suspect he did. A more thorough search for a probate record and land records in other counties should be undertaken. The only man named Hubbard Brewer found on the 1820 census was in Scott, St, Clair Co., Illinois. The 1850 U.S. census does show a Hubbard Brewer, age 19, in Northern Division, Davidson Co., North Carolina, enumerated in the household of Madison Davis, age 38. He is found in the same location again in 1860, age 29, with a household of his own, including (assumed) wife Charlotte, age 23, and (assumed) son Uriah, age 11 months. If this later Hubbard Brewer is a descendant of  Hubbard3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) then he is likely a grandson.

Isaac3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) is listed by Broyhill (1992) at page 100, assigned the number G35, but is not discussed. Varner (2003) picks up a discussion of Isaac at page 317. Isaac is named in his father's 1778 will. He was to receive an equal share (with his brother Oliver) of the mill, after the death of Henry's wife Mary, who had received half the mill by the 1778 will. However, it appears that in 1786, George Brewer (Isaac's brother) and Mary Brewer (presumably Henry's widow) sold the mill. In 1791 an Isaac Brewer (and Valentine Brewer) are assigned to a road crew. The road leads from "the Barracks to Mathew Joneses Poison Field Plantation."* Isaac Brewer is not found as a head of household on the 1790 U.S. census in North Carolina. On 13 August 1792, Isaac Brewer of Chatham Co., sold to Oliver Brewer of the same place, 72 acres on the north side of the Haw River. Isaac cannot be identified as a head of household on the census records of 1800, 1810 or 1820 (an Isaac Brewer does appear in Hallifax, Martin Co., NC in those years though it is very likely he is another man of the same name). In 1850, an Isaac Brewer, age 87 (b. ca. 1763), born in North Carolina, is found in Hardeman County, Tennessee. His wife is Elizabeth (age 74, b. in Virginia), and they are enumerated next to the household of Isaac Brewer, Jr. (age 30, born in Kentucky).** Also in Hardeman Co. in 1850 is a Henry Brewer (age 34, born in Missouri) with a household that includes (assumed) wife Elizabeth (age 38, b. North Carolina), and (assumed) son Isaac (age 10, b. Tennessee). The older Isaac, who is about the same age as Isaac3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) would be, is also found in Hardeman Co. in 1840 and in 1830. The 1840 census also records Henry Brewer as a head of household, while the 1830 census may include a Benjamin Brewer (the census sheet is blurred and the name appears as "Beuers"). Hardeman County is in the western part of Tennessee and was created in 1823 from parts of Hardin County and "Indian Lands." There is enough evidence here to suspect that the Isaac Brewer of Hardeman Co., Tennessee was Isaac3 Brewer (Henry2, George1), but continued research is required. For now, this link must be regarded as tentative.

Isaac Brewer, 1850 U.S. census, Hardeman Co., TN (NARA via

Oliver3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) was also named in his father's 1778 will, and was to share in Mary's half of the mill, after her death, and with his brother Isaac. He also received a bay mare with the brand HB. Broyhill (1992) lists Oliver Brewer on page 100, assigns him the number G36, estimates his birth at "1742??" but adds no additional information. Varner (2003) begins his account of Oliver Brewer at page 320, but it is very brief. Broyhill's guess at Oliver's birth date is certainly too early. It is more likely that he was born in the decade of the 1760s. This Oliver Brewer is very difficult in that he had an uncle of the same name, and a cousin of the same name Oliver3 Brewer (Oliver2, George1), both of whom lived in Chatham County, and in the same local vicinity on the Haw River. Oliver cannot be identified as a head of household on the U.S. census records of 1790, 1800 or 1810 in Chatham Co., North Carolina. The Oliver Brewers who do appear on the census in those years are more likely his uncle and cousin. In 1792, his brother Isaac sold land on the Haw River to an Oliver Brewer, but just which Oliver Brewer this is, is not clear. It is suspected that it was his uncle Oliver2 Brewer (George1), although it may have also been his cousin Oliver3 Brewer (Oliver2, George1). As of this writing, what became of Oliver3 Brewer (Henry2, George1) cannot be determined.

Of the above four sons of Henry2 Brewer (George1), the most promising for further research is the son Henry who may have had a son Oliver who lived in Warren Co., Tennessee, and the son Isaac, who may be the Isaac Brewer who is found in Hardeman Co., Tennessee. Both left descendants. Of the "Brewer-Lanier" pedigrees currently posted online, only one (#N17443) claims a descent from Henry2 Brewer (George1) but the submitter lists a son Peter Brewer, for Henry Brewer, who is not proved. Henry did not name a son Peter in his will, and lacking other evidence that demonstrates that Henry did have such a son, we have to conclude that this pedigree is in error. It should be corrected to reflect the earliest, provable, ancestor.

*Recall that Isaac's brother George named a son Jones Brewer. Could George Brewer's wife have been a member of the family of Mathew Jones?

**Another Isaac Brewer, born in 1763, left a Revolutionary War pension application and was living in Talladega Co., Alabama in 1850. Although of the same age, this is a different Isaac Brewer. The family details found in his application are important and they will be covered in a future post.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Because of spamming issues, all submitted comments are moderated. Your comment is appreciated, but it will not appear online until it has first been reviewed. All relative comments will be sent through. Comments of a commercial nature will be blocked. It may take as little as a few hours or as long as a few days for submitted comments to appear online. Please do not resend the same comment. Thank you.