Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

John Brewer (1796-1849) of Broadalbin, New York

John Brewer (1796-1849) of Broadalbin, New York is a descendant of Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, Long Island. Proof of this ancestry is found in the Y-Chromosome DNA test of a direct male descendant of John Brewer. The tested descendant's test results match those of other known direct male descendants of Adam Brouwer. What is not known is John Brewer's paternal ancestry back to Adam Brouwer. The direct paternal lineage of our tested descendant of John Brewer can be seen on the Brouwer Genealogy Database website.

John Brewer died on 13 August 1849, age 53 years and 10 days, which gives us a calculated birth date of 3 August 1796. He was buried in Union Mills Cemetery. A Find-A-Grave memorial (#126042777) includes a photo of his gravestone. His remains had been removed from North Broadalbin Cemetery in 1930, when the Great Sacandaga Lake (a man made reservoir) was created. See the Union Mills Cemetery page of burials compiled by Dave Bixby. John Brewer can be found on the U. S. Federal Census records in 1820, 1830 and 1840 in Broadalbin which was in Montgomery County until 1838 and then in Fulton County which was created out of Montgomery County. John's widow, Elsie Brewer, identified by descendants as Elsie Mosher, is found as a head of household at Broadallbin on the 1850 U. S. census. Eight children have been identified for John and Elsie (Mosher) Brewer. All moved west during the decade of the 1850s, relocating in Illinois and Michigan and afterwards settling in Missouri. Elsie (Mosher) Brewer died in 1878 and is buried in Fairview Cemetery, Cockrell Twp., Chariton County, Missouri. Some descendants of John Brewer and Elsie Mosher can be found at the Brouwer Genealogy Database, however, a more complete accounting can be found at in the new Adam Brouwer of Gowanus, L. I. database being created there (note that a paid subscription to is required to view this database).

As mentioned above, John Brewer's direct paternal ancestry back to Adam Brouwer is not known. The identity of John's parents are not certain. I have seen suggestions (online) that John is the son of a Daniel Brewer. It has also been suggested that he may be a brother of a Russel Brewer who was born about 1804 and is found at Broadalbin in 1840. This Russel Brewer is then found in Edinburgh, Saratoga County, New York in 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880, however, he too is buried in Union Mills Cemetery in Broadalbin. Russel Brewer was married to Eliza A. Coon and had eight children. There are some shared names among the children of both John and Russel, including children named Daniel and James. It has been suggested that Russel Brewer is a son of a George Brewer who is found on the first U. S. census in 1790 at Watervliet, Albany County, New York. This George Brewer is said to have married Magdalena Outhout in 1772. This 32 year gap between the marriage and Russel's birth in about 1804 requires us to question this claim. Russel cannot be a son of a couple married 32 years prior to his birth. Perhaps he is a grandson?

The Brewer DNA Project (hosted by FamilyTreeDNA) seeks direct male descendants of Russel Brewer of Broadalbin and Edinburg, and of any other Brewer (or Brower) families that may have resided in Broadalbin during the first half of the 1800s. We would like to see if a connection can be made between the families of John Brewer and Russel Brewer. Interested descendants can join the Project at our main page and are welcome to contact the administrator with any questions. Please keep in mind that we do need a direct male descendant of a Broadalbin Brewer male to take a Y-DNA test. Autosomal testing, such as that offered by or by FamilyTreeDNA with their Family Finder test, is not suitable for our purposes.

Descendants of the Brewer families from Broadalbin, New York, those with interest in this line, or those with any insight into the ancestry of the Broadalbin Brewers should directly contact Larry Brewer. Hopefully we can eventually find the link that connects John Brewer to Adam Brouwer.

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