Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Children of Dr. William Brown

Dr. William Brown of Mendon and Pembroke, New York, had five children.  He had four daughters with his first wife, Bridget Palmer, and one son with his second wife, Sarah Loomis.  His youngest daughter, Amelia Brown, was my fourth great-grandmother.  I've been researching the lives of William's other children, in hopes that this will shed some light on the family and eventually provide proof of the connection to Joseph Brown and Elizabeth Gary, William Brown's presumed parents.

Elizabeth Brown 

Elizabeth was the eldest child of William Brown and Bridget Palmer.  She was born in 1812 in Mendon, New York, and grew nearly to adulthood there.  She was sixteen when her mother died, in 1828, and her father moved to Pembroke and remarried.  At that time, Elizabeth must have been heavily involved in running the household and caring for her younger sisters.  In 1832, at the age of twenty, Elizabeth married John W. King, a native of Homer, New York and a recent graduate of Fairfield Medical School.  After marrying in Mendon, Elizabeth and John moved together to Grand Blanc, Michigan, where John began a career as a noted physician and surgeon.  The book "History of Northern Michigan" by Perry F. Powers says that, "Dr. John W. King was an abolitionist, and before the Civil War became a terrible reality did all in his power to create a sentiment for the freeing of the Negro. He was prominent in the many-sided life of the community and was the kindly friend and doctor of hundreds of families." Together, John and Elizabeth had six daughters and two sons:
  • Elizabeth L. King (b. 1838 in Grand Blanc, MI; d. 1876 in Tawas City, MI; m. Herbert Schram; children: Leola Schram, Arthur Schram)
  • Laura Susan King (b. 1840 in Grand Blanc, MI; d. 1902 in Los Angeles, CA; m. John Montgomery; children: Jay R. Montgomery)
  • Sophia King (b. 1842 in Grand Blanc, MI; d. 1919 in Manistee, MI; m. Edwin E. Benedict; children: Elbert Benedict, Glen Ellis Benedict)
  • John King (b. abt 1846 in Grand Blanc, MI)
  • Martha King (b. abt 1848 in Grand Blanc, MI)
  • Sarah Amelia King (b. abt 1850 in Grand Blanc, MI; d. 1889 in Manistee, MI; m. Henry S. Hilton; children: Blanche L. Hilton)
  • Alice King (b. 1852 in Grand Blanc, MI)
  • James Asabel King (b. abt 1857; d. 1923 in Manistee, MI; m. Minnie Billington)
Elizabeth died in 1883 in Manistee, Michigan.


Mercy Brown

Mercy was the second daughter of William and Bridget Brown, and the only one of William's children who would spend her adult life in Mendon.  She was born in 1815.  In 1835, at the age of twenty, she married Loton Samuel Hodge.  He was older than her, about 35 at the time of the marriage, and an established farmer in Mendon.  They raised seven children in Mendon and provided a support system for Mercy's father and stepmother as they grew old.
  • Maria Hodge (b. 1837 in Mendon, NY; d. 1917; m. William Dailey)
  • Israel Hodge (b. 1840 in Mendon, NY; d. 1840 in Mendon, NY)
  • Nelson Hodge (b. 1842 in Mendon, NY; d. 1862 in the Civil War, Battle of Bolivar Heights, West Virginia)
  • George Palmer Hodge (b. 1845 in Mendon, NY; d. 1916 in Grand Ledge, MI; m. Adelaide Kinyon; children: Nelson Hodge, Eugene Hodge, Charles Loton Hodge)
  • Amelia Hodge (b. 1847 in Mendon, NY; d. unknown; m. Charles E. Peachey; children: Elmer Peachey)
  • Ella Hodge (b. 1850 in Mendon, NY; d. 1927 in Shortsville, NY; m. Frank Peer; children: Bert Hodge Peer, Estella Peer, Ralph J. Peer)
  • William Hodge (b. 1854 in Mendon, NY; d. 1926; m. Mary Parmelee; children: Addison Parmelee Hodge)
Mercy died in 1879.  She is buried in Mendon Cemetery, in the same plot as her mother, father, husband and several of her children.

The Hodge graves in Mendon Cemetery (photo courtesy of Cheri Branca)


Maria Brown

Maria was born in 1817 in Mendon, New York.  She was the third daughter of William Brown and Bridget Palmer. In about 1840, around the age of twenty-two, Maria married John Walker Davock and settled in Buffalo, New York.  John died in 1853, at the young age of 42, leaving Maria a widow in her thirties.  She did not remarry.  Before his death, John and Maria had four children together:
  • Ella Davock (b. 1842 in Buffalo, NY; d. 1925; she did not marry)
  • William B. Davock (b. 1847 in Buffalo, NY)
  • Harlow Palmer Davock (b. 1848 in Buffalo, NY; d. 1910 in New Hampshire; m. Sarah Whiting; children: Clarence Whiting Davock, Harlow Noble Davock, Henry Davock)
  • Harriet "Hattie" Davock (b. 1852 in Buffalo, NY; d. 1926 in Buffalo, NY; she did not marry)
Maria died in 1901.  She outlived her three sisters by many years.

Maria Brown Davock's grave in Buffalo, New York (courtesy Jay Boone)


Amelia Brown

Amelia was the youngest of William's children with Bridget Palmer.  My fourth great-grandmother was born in 1823 in Mendon, New York.  Her mother died when she was five, so Amelia was primarily raised by her stepmother, Sarah Loomis.  In 1843, at the age of twenty, Amelia married John Gustavus Bellangee, Jr.  He was the son of John Gustavus Bellangee, Sr. and Mary Ann Trout of New Jersey.  They moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where their four children were born.
  • Mary Elizabeth Bellangee (b. 1844 in Milwaukee, WI; d. 1929 in Los Angeles, CA; m. George William Dickson; children: Mary Dickson, Elizabeth Davock Dickson, Anne Amelia Dickson, George William Dickson, Jr., Wilfred Bellangee Dickson)
  • Anne Amelia Bellangee (b. 1846 in Milwaukee, WI; d. 1932 in Milan, Ohio)
  • William Palmer Bellangee (b. 1846 in Milwaukee, WI; d. 1882 in Ohio; he did not marry)
  • John Gustavus Bellangee III (b. 1857 in Milwaukee, WI; d. 1936 in Los Angeles, CA; m. Marie Holmes Klingner; children: John Gustavus Bellangee IV, Catharine Bellangee; Helena Bellangee)

Amelia's husband, John Bellangee is often described in records as a mason, but he was actually an architect and land developer who was responsible for the construction of a number of buildings in downtown Milwaukee during the city's early years.  He was also the defendant in a court case that went to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The court ruled in John Bellangee's favor in the landmark fraudulent conveyance suit, Crocker vs. Bellangee, but the Bellangee family endured years of litigation and appeals before that decision.

The Ballengee children excelled in artistic pursuits.  Two of the children, Anne and William, became music teachers.  My third great-grandmother, Mary Elizabeth, loved poetry and literature, and she later encouraged this interest in her grandson, George Rutherfurd.  Sometime between 1860 and 1870, John and Amelia moved from Milwaukee to Ohio.  Amelia died there in 1876 at the age of 47. Her body was taken to Buffalo, New York, and buried in the family plot at Forest Lawn Cemetery, near her sister Maria.  When John Bellangee died in 1889, he was buried beside Amelia.

Amelia Brown Bellangee's grave in Buffalo, New York (courtesy Jay Boone)


Loomis Palmer Brown

Loomis was born in 1831 in Pembroke, New York.  He was the only child of Dr. William Brown and his second wife, Sarah Loomis.  He seems to have gone mainly by the name Palmer, although records vary.  In about 1857, Loomis married a woman named Mary.  In the 1860 census, he is listed as a farmer in Pembroke, New York.  He and Mary had two children at that time.  Sometime between 1864 and 1870, Loomis and Mary moved to Flint, Michigan, where they had another child.  I lose track of Loomis after this time, and have not been able to find any further records for him and his family.  The children of Loomis and Mary were as follows:
  • Albert Brown (b. 1858 in Pembroke, NY)
  • Alma Brown (b. 1864 in Pembroke, NY)
  • Hattie Brown (b. 1870 in Flint, MI)




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