The Caretaker

Mary Anne Walder Brown (1825-1904)

There’s always one child who winds up being the caretaker. Often it’s the daughter with no children of her own who the rest of the family seems to gravitate to. In this family that child was Mary Ann.

Mary Anne Walder Brown was born about 1825, presumably in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth or christening record for her . She uses the name Mary A. or Mary A.W. throughout life, and her will provided the name Walder. She arrived with her family in New York on 11 Apr 1835, and I can account for her (based on age) on the 1840 census.

In about 1845, Mary Anne married Robert William Pringle (abt 1825-1895). More on him and the Pringles in a bit.

Here are the records I found for Mary Anne
-1855 – NY census, her mother Elizabeth is residing with her.
-1865 – NY census, her mother, brother James and nephew Wm are living with her.
-1968 – Mother Elizabeth dies
-1870 – Fed. census, it’s just her and Robert – who is listed as out to sea.
-1875 – NY census, her nephew William Brown b.1858 Kings NY is living with them.
-1880 – Fed. census, Hugh and Thomas Nevin are residing with them but are not relation.
-1892 – Thomas Nevin is still residing with them.
-1895 – 7 Feb husband Robert died.
-1900 – Fed census, with sister-in-laws Elizabeth Pringle b. Apr 1821 and Charlotte (Pringle) McEndow b. Aug 1828

Mary Anne died 11 April 1904. She was interred in Green-Wood Cemetery with her husband in Lot 27263, Sec 135. Her will was written on 3 Oct 1901, but wasn’t proven until 16 Nov 1904. She names her niece Ruth Reed (daughter of sister Frances), niece Hattie Knox (daughter of brother Edward), brother Edward Brown, and sister-in-law Eliza Pringle in her will.

Let’s talk about the damn Pringles for a minute. I will generally look at a spouse and attempt to determine who their parents were. In this case, that turned into a bit of an exercise in confusion. On the 1900 Census, Elizabeth Pringle and Charlotte McEndow are both listed as sister-in-laws to the head of household Mary Anne, indicating they are both sisters of Robert W. Pringle.

I went in search of what I presumed were the Pringle sisters.
Eliza Pringle’s 1906 death certificate stated she was born in 1821 in Ireland, the daughter of Hamilton Pringle and Jane McEndon [sic].

Charlotte McEndow’s 1907 death certificate states she was born in 1827 in Ireland, the daughter of James Pringle and Ann Montgomery.

I noticed they were both buried in Green-Wood cemetery so I checked plot records. Charlotte is buried with her son Joseph Hamilton McEndow (1863-1888). Eliza is buried with Margaret P. Bryan (1822-1897) and her husband. Margaret’s death certificate states she was born in 1822 in Ireland, the daughter of Hamilton Pringle and Jane McEndow.

To complicate matters further, buried with Mary Anne and Robert is William Thomas Pringle (1840-1893) who was born in England, son of James and Elizabeth Pringle.

I found three Pringle girls arriving in New York on 18 Sep 1839 – Margaret b.1821, Eliza b. 1823, and Charlotte b. 1826.

With a lack of adequate records, and being unwilling to expend the many hours it would take to sort out the 65 Pringles in Green-Wood Cemetery, can I just make up my own story here? Margaret and Eliza are the sisters of Robert and the children of Hamilton and Jane (McEndow) Pringle. Charlotte is their younger Pringle cousin who married one of their McEndow cousins and is more sister than cousin to the girls. William Thomas is the son of one of Hamilton’s brothers who went to England. How’s that? *sigh* Yeah… I’ll be unable to leave them alone either. It’s the name and the potato chip syndrome – I’ll have to sort them out. I’ll be back…

The Disappearing Brown

Edward Brown (1819-1906)

My second Brown sibling who drove me to distraction was Edward. He was born 6 Oct 1819 in Suffolk, England, and arrived in 1835 with his family. His birth date came from his obituary;1 I have not yet located a birth or christening record for him. He married Ann Burnett (1819-2 Jun 1897) on 1 Jun 1839 (date and maiden name from his obit). Several trees state that Ann’s parents were William and Rachel (Durrant) Burnett, but I’ve found no real evidence of that. There are numerous Ann Burnetts born 1819-1820 in England. I’ll check the image of her death record when in Salt Lake City to see if it provides any other information, but until someone comes up with a definitive record from New York, I’ll leave that block empty.

The Edward Brown family pulled a great disappearing act. I could not locate Edward between the 1835 passenger list and the 1900 Census.2 I could not locate his son Edward A. after 1868 when he signed his grandmother’s death certificate. There were death dates for Edward and Ann on several online trees and, as usual, not a single damn source for the information. Using the dates online, I went in search of death records and obituaries. I first found Ann’s death record and a death notice, but it provides no help with her parents.3Edw Ann 3 Jun 1897 Thu BDE p7 c2Ann (Burnett) Brown was interred on 5 Jun 1897 in Cypress Hills Cemetery in Sec 4, Lot 605, grave 4. The plot was owned by John Mason, father-in-law of Ann’s daughter Elizabeth (Brown) Mason.

In the end it really only took two records to open up the Edward Brown family for me.

First: Edward’s 1906 obituary. At the time of his death, Edward was living with his daughter Elizabeth Mason (born in Canada)- she was the only child that I knew at the time.Edw 12 Apr 1906 Thur BDE p3c1 The obituary provided the name of two sons: Edward (the doctor previously mentioned) and Dr. Charles B. Brown of Sycamre, Ill. Charles is well documented in Illinois records, including a death record which named his birth location of Drummondville, Ontario, Canada.4 This was the first time I had a province to work with.

Second: In the will of Edward’s sister, Mary Anne Walder Brown Pringle, she named niece Hattie L. Knox.5

Fourth, I give to my niece Hattie Knox in trust for her father (my brother) Edwin[sic] Brown one half of all my Real Estate and at his death the same shall go to my niece Hattie Knox.”

Finally with another lead to chase, I worked on Hattie (Harriet) and found she was born in Canada in 1860. With several dozen Edward Browns in Canada in 1861, it was much easier to search for a one-year-old child named Harriet Brown. Thanks to these records, I was able to name the previously unnamed daughters from the obituary and discovered two more children who were already deceased at the time of Edward’s death.

Edward’s first three children were born in New York. In 1846, he moved to Canada where he was found on the 1861 Census of Canada in Stanford, Welland, Canada West [Ontario] with his family.6 His profession was as a baker, which was unique enough to help when tracking him. He and Ann are on the 1871 Census of Canada in Woodhouse, Norfolk South, Ontario, along with four of their children: Charles, Annie, Emma, and Hattie. They state their religion as Presbyterian.7 Edward and Ann returned to the US and lived for a time in Rhode Island before returning Brooklyn.8 He lived with daughter Elizabeth (Brown) Mason in Brooklyn after his wife Ann’s death. He died 6 Oct 1906 in Brooklyn9 and was buried in Cypress Hills Cemetery in the Brown-Frith family plot in grave 17 with his younger brother Marshall.10

His 8 children as I currently know them:
1. Dr. Edward A. Brown, MD was born in 1840 in New York. He was mentioned in his father’s obit as being an early graduate of Long Island College Hospital. I found him listed as alumni in a history of the college. He signed Elizabeth Heriott Brown’s death certificate in 1868 and appears in the 1868 and 1869 Brooklyn City Directory as a physician with an address on Skillman. He died in January 1871 at the age of 30 in Woodhouse, Norfolk South, Ontario, Canada, from consumption.11 His profession is listed as surgeon.

2. Robert S. Brown was born Jun 1843 in New York. He appears on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with his parents and siblings. In the same location as his parents in 1871, there is a Robert S. Brown with wife Eliza and son Charles.12 I believe this is our Robert based on his U.S. birth and his occupation as baker, but I found no marriage record and both Eliza and Charles seem to disappear after this record. I don’t know if they divorced or if his wife and child died. Robert next appears on the 1880 Federal Census in Canadaigua, Ontario, New York with wife Jane (Cross) Limmer Brown (1846-1928) and her two children from a previous marriage.13 Based on later records, it appears that he and Jane married in about 1876, but I have not found a marriage record for them in Canada or New York. Both of her children from her previous marriage were born in Canada, and she later states an immigration date to the U.S. of 1876, so it is probable that she and Robert met and married in Canada before he returned to the U.S.14 The family removed to Kansas in the early 1880s and he was next found in Leavenworth in 1885 with Jane and her sons. He was found again in 1895 with wife Jane and their child Lloyd Ellsworth Mitchell Brown (1891-1964).15,16 Robert died 8 Nov 1901 and was buried in Mount Muncie Cemetery, Lansing, Leavenworth, Kansas.17 Jane died 29 Apr 1928 in Peoria, Illinois, and was buried 2 May 1928 in Mount Muncie with Robert.18

3. Josephine W. Brown was born in 1845 in New York. An unsourced file in FamilySearch states her date of birth as 16 June 1845. She was found on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with her family. She married George N. Smith on 23 Jun 1868 in Norfolk, Ontario, Canada.19 George was born in 1844 in Wales, the son of David and Mary (Williams) Smith. They moved first to Wisconsin before settling in Utica, Oneida, New York, where they remained until their deaths. George died in 1883 and Josephine in 1896.20,21 They had 4 known children: Harriet B. b. 1868, Alice C. b 1870, Arthur b.1874, and Josephine b.1877.

4. Dr. Charles Benjamin Brown was born 25 Dec 1847 in Drummondville, Ontario, Canada and died 9 Nov 1928 in Sycamore, DeKalb, Illinois. He was found on the 1861 Canadian Census with his family. He states his immigration year as 1864, but he was on the 1871 Census of Canada with his family, and his stated occupation at that time was dentist. The Directory of Deceased American Physicians, 1804-1929, states he attended the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Medicine: University of Buffalo School of Medicine, 1876.22 He married Annette Bacon (1850-1915) in about 1877 and relocated to Sycamore, DeKalb, Illinois in 1878 where he remained. According to the article in the paper, they had five children together – I know of four: Stella Brown 1879-1879, Edward B. Brown 1882-1884, Marguerite Brown 1884-1974, and Helen Gertrude Brown 1888-1954.Charles p17 c4

5. Elizabeth Brown was born in Jan 1850 in Ontario, Canada and died 7 May 1908 in Brooklyn.23 She was found on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with her family. She married William Mason (1834-1903) on 18 Jan 1870 in New York.24 The newspaper excerpt stated “Elizabeth, daughter of Edward Brown of Port Dover, Canada.” William Mason (1834-1903) was the son of John Mason and Harriet Ann Bull and was also the nephew of William Mason (1805-1873) who had been married to Edward’s sister Sarah. She stated 1870 as her immigration date on the 1900 census. Elizabeth died 7 May 1908 and was buried in the Mason family plot in Cypress Hills Cemetery. Elizabeth and William had seven known children: Harriet Ann L. 1871-1953, Anna M. 1873-1908, Frederick W. 1875-1900, Edward 1877-1877, Dora G. 1877-?, Nellie Daisy 1879-?, and John D. 1882-1913..

6. Annie S. Brown was born about 1852 in Ontario, Canada. She was found on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with her family. She is on the 1871 Census of Canada (age 19) with her family. I was not able to locate a marriage or death record for Annie. Based on her father’s obituary (4 surviving daughters) I know she is still alive in 1906, but do not know who she married..

7. Emma F. Brown was born about 1856 in Ontario, Canada. She was found on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with her family. She is on the 1871 Census of Canada (age 15) with her family. Once again, I found no marriage or death record for Emma. Based on her father’s obituary (4 surviving daughters) I know she is still alive in 1906, but do not know who she married.

8. Harriet “Hattie” L. Brown was born Apr 1860 in Ontario, Canada, and died 12 May 1956 in Madison, New Haven, Connecticut.25 She was found on the 1861 Canadian Census in Stanford, Welland, Canada West with her family. She is on the 1871 Census of Canada (age 11) with her family. She immigrated to the US in 1880, settling in Brooklyn. On 6 Jan 1884 she married George W. Knox (1854-1935) in Brooklyn26 and they remained there through 1915. By 1920, she and George had relocated to Connecticut along with her son. She was interred in West Cemetery with her husband George.27 She had two known children: Chester A. Knox, 1885-1966, and Emma J. Knox, 1887-?.

Annoyingly, I still don’t know who Annie and Emma married so the most I can say is that they died after 1906.



1. “Edward Brown,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 12 Apr 1906, p. 3, col. 1; digital images(accessed 10 Nov 2015).
2. 1900 U.S. census, population schedule, Brooklyn Ward 23, Kings, New York, enumeration district (ED) 386, p. 2A, dwelling 17, family 32, Edward Brown, Oct 1819, 80, England, with daughter Elizabeth Mason; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 17 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T623, roll 1060.
3. “BROWN-On Wednesday, June 2, ANN BURNETT, wife of Edward Brown.,” Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 3 Jun 1897, Thursday, p. 7, col. 2; digital images(accessed 17 Nov 2015).
4. “Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947,” database, Ancestry.com (accessed 17 Nov 2015), Chas Benjamin Brown, birth 25 Dec 1847, Drummondville, Ontario, Can, death 9 Nov 1928 Sycamore, DeKalb, Illinois, Physician, Edward Brown, Ann Burnette, Sussex England, spouse Annette Bacon.
5. Mary Ann Walder Brown, Will dated 3 Dec 1901, Probate 16 Nov 1904 New York Wills and Probate Records, Ancestry.com; digital images(accessed 17 Nov 2015).
6.1861 census of Canada East, Canada West, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia, Stamford, Welland, Canada West, Canada, district 5, Township of Stamford, p. 57, Brown: Edward 42, Ann 48, Edward A. 21, Robert S. 17, Josephine 16, Charles B. 14, Elizabeth 12, Annie E. 9, Emma F. 5, Harriet I. 1; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com (accessed 10 Nov 2015).
7 1871 census of Canada, district 11, sub-district d, Woodhouse, Norfolk South, Ontario, p. 53, dwelling 205, family 207, Edward 51 England Baker, Anne 51 England, Charles 23 O Dentist, Annie 19 O, Emma 15 O, Hattie 11 O; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com (accessed 17 Nov 2015).
8. 1880 U.S. census, population schedule, Providence, Providence, Rhode Island, enumeration district (ED) 38, p. 93C, dwelling 145, family 240, Brown, Edward 60 England Carerer, Ann 60 England, Hattie 20 Canada; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 17 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T9, roll 1212.
9. “New York, New York, Death Index, 1862-1848,” database, New York, New York, Death Index, 1862-1848 (accessed 12 May 2014), Edward Brown, age 86, died 10 Apr 1906, Kings, Cert #7367. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
10. Cypress Hills Cemetery (Brooklyn, Queens, New York), Plot Records, Edward Brown, interred 12 Apr 1906, grave 17, Sec 2, Lot 161, Brown-Frith family plot.
11. 1871 census of Canada, district 11 Div 01, sub-district D, Woodhouse, Norfolk South, Ontario, Canada, p. 1 Death Returns, Line 20, Brown, Dr. E.A., 30, Presb, born United States, Occupation Surgeon, Unmarried, died January 1871, Consumption; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com (accessed 10 Nov 2015).
12. 1871 census of Canada, district 19 division 02, sub-district J, Stamford, Welland, Ontario, p. 88, dwelling 337, family 353, Brown, Robert 27, US Presby, Baker; Eliza 28 Ont Presby; Charles 5 Ont Presby; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com (accessed 12 Nov 2015).
13. 1880 U.S. census, population schedule, Canandaigua, Ontario, New York, enumeration district (ED) 118, p. 93B, dwelling 425, family 468, Brown, Robert S 37 Baker NY, Jane C 37 England, William and George L Limmer; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 12 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T9, roll 908
14. 1900 U.S. census, population schedule, Kansas City Ward 8, Jackson, Missouri, enumeration district (ED) 80, p. 7B, dwelling 86, family 169, Brown, Robert S. Jun 1843 56 m24 NY Baker, Jane Oct 1847 52 m24, 3/2 children England, imm 1876, Lloyd E.M. Jun 1889 10 Kansas; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 12 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T623, roll 863.
15. Kansas, population schedule, Leavenworth, Leavenworth, Kansas, p. 1, KS 1885 72, dwelling 8, family 10, line 16, Brown, Robert S 40 Baker, J.C. 37, Limmer W.L 19, Limmer Geo L 17; digital images, Ancestry(accessed 12 Nov 2015).
16. Kansas, population schedule, Leavenworth, Leavenworth, Kansas, p. 4 Roll v115 76, dwelling 573, family 585, line 3, Brown, R.S. 52, Lloyd 6, J.C.54; digital images, Ancestry.com (accessed 12 Nov 2015).
17. “Leavenworth County Cemetery/Burial Database,” database, Leavenworth County.org ( accessed 12 Nov 2015), Brown, Robert S. 1844-8 Nov 1901, Mount Muncie Cemetery.
18. “Death Index,” database, Ancestry (accessed 10 Nov 2015), Illinois, Deaths and Stillbirths Index, 1916-1947, Jane Cross Brown, 10 Dec 1848,, 29 Apr 1927, Peoria, Illinois, Burial 2 may 1928, Leavenworth, Kansas, FHL Film 1614420
19. “Ontario, Canada, Marriages, 1801-1928,” database, Ancestry.com (accessed 10 Nov 2015), 23 Jun 1868, Josephine N. Brown, 23 US, George N. Smith 24 Wales.
20. Find A Grave, digital images (findagrave.com: accessed 12 Nov 2015), Memorial #112030890, George W. Smith, b. 1843 d. 1883, Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica, Oneida, New York.
21. Find A Grave, digital images (findagrave.com: accessed 12 Nov 2015), Memorial #112030775, Josephine W. Brown Smith b. 1845, d. 1896, Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica, Oneida, New York.
22. Directory of Deceased American Physicians, 1804-1929; Charles B. Brown; JAMA Citation 91:1911
23. “New York Death Records,” database (accessed 17 Nov 2015), Cert #9329, Elizabeth Mason b. 1850, died 7 May 1908 Brooklyn, 58, Widowed, buried 10 May 1908 Cypress Hills, Edward Brown, Ann Burnett.
24. New York Marriage Newspaper Extracts, 1801-1880, (Barber Collection), “Rev Hiram Hutchings: William Mason of City to Elizabeth Brown dau Edward of Port Dover Canada,” Tuesday, 18 Jan 1870; digital images(accessed 17 Nov 2015).
25. “Connecticut Death Index, 1949-2012,” database, Ancestry.com (accessed 19 Nov 2015), Harri L. Knox, death 12 May 1956, age 96, spouse Geor, State File #08188.
26. “New York, New York, marriage Indexes 1866-1937,” database(accessed 19 Nov 2015), Certificate #53, 6 Jan 1884 Hattie Brown and George W. Knox.
27. Find A Grave, digital images (findagrave.com : accessed 19 Nov 2015), Memorial #130490469, Harriet L. Knox, Apr 1860 Ontario Canada, 12 May 1956, Madison, New Haven, Connecticut, West Cemetery.

Chasing the Elusive Brown Kids

Easier Now Than in 2010

Here’s where I’m at with the children of William and Elizabeth (Heriott) Brown:

1. Sarah Brown was born in 1811 in Sussex, England. She married William Mason in St Nicholas Church, Brighton on 19 Sep 1830.1 William was born about 1805 in Lewes, Sussex, England and worked as a coach maker. They, along with their two infant sons, immigrated to New York on the same ship with her parents and siblings and arrived on 11 Apr 1835.2 Sarah died about 1849 and was interred in Cypress Hills Cemetery on 14 Jan 1849.3 There will be more in the next post about Sarah’s family.

2. John Brown was born about 1814 in Sussex, England. He was christened 18 Sep 1814 in St. Anne, Lewes, Sussex, England.4 He did not immigrate at the same time as his family, however he did die here (at the age of 33) since he was buried in the family plot on 14 Jan 1849 and shares grave 17 with his sister Sarah and younger brother Robert. His age at death was 33, making his death date in 1847.5 I have found no death notice, obituary, or probate record. I do not know if he married.

3. Frances Brown was born about 1815 in Sussex, England. I haven’t yet found her christening record. I covered her and husband William Frith’s lives in the More Darn Friths post 30 Oct 2015.

4. William Brown was born about 1816 in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth/christening record for him. He arrived with his parents and siblings on 11 Apr 1835.6 The last definite record I have located for him is the previously discussed 1850 Federal Census. He is not buried in the family plot.

5. Edward Brown was born 6 Oct 1819 in Suffolk, England, and arrived in 1835 with his family. His birth date came from his obituary; I have not yet located a birth or christening record for him. He married Ann Burnette on 1 Jun 1839 (date from his obit) and they had at least 8 children. He died 6 Oct 1906 in Brooklyn and was buried in Cypress Hills Cemetery in the Brown-Frith family plot in grave 17 with his younger brother Marshall. His obituary was published on Thursday, 12 Apr 1906 in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle on page 3, col 1. I’ll be dedicating an entire post to Edward and his family. I will cover Edward and his family (along will all the sources in a later post – another fascinating family.

6. Marshall Brown was born about 1822 in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth or christening record for him. He arrived with his family in New York on 11 Apr 1835.7 I was unable to definitively locate him on the 1850 Federal Census. He was interred in the Brown-Frith family plot on 10 Apr 1851 in grave 17. His age at death was 29, matching the age from the passenger list.8 I have found no death notice or records yet.

7. Catherine Brown was born about 1824 in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth or christening record for her. She arrived with her family in New York on 11 Apr 1835. I have found no records after that date to help me locate her. At the time of the 1840 census, she would have been 16 years old. It is possible that she was married, but much more likely she had died prior to 1840. She is not located in the family plot.

8. Mary Anne Walder Brown was born about 1826 in Sussex, England. I have not found a birth or christening record for her yet. She uses the name Mary A.W. throughout life, and her will provided the name Walder. She arrived with her family in New York on 11 Apr 1835, and I can account for her (based on age) on the 1840 census. In about 1849, Mary Anne married Robert William Pringle (b.1830 Ireland) and resided in Brooklyn throughout her life. Mary Anne died 11 April 1904. She was interred in Green-Wood Cemetery with her husband in Lot 27263, Sec 135. More on Mary Anne, including the sources, in a later post.

9. James Brown was born about 1829 in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth or christening record for him. He arrived in New York with his family on 11 Apr 1835. I have accounted for him on the 1840 Federal Census. In 1865 he’s with his sister Mary A. Pringle and mother Elizabeth in Brooklyn.9 On that census he states he was married once and is now a widower. William Brown (b. 1857) is also in the home and is probably his son. William is back with his aunt Mary A.W. Brown Pringle in 1875. James was interred on 30 Oct 1870, in the Brown-Frith family plot in grave 13 with his parents. He was not found in the New York City death index so it’s probable he died outside of the city.10 I have not yet found a death notice or death record for him.

10. George Brown was born about 1831 in Sussex, England. I have not yet found a birth or christening record for him. He arrived in New York with his family on 11 Apr 1835. I believe that he is mis-enumerated as a female on the 1840 Federal Census. My reasoning is that he was 15 when he died, placing his death in about 1846. He would have been alive in 1840. He was interred with his siblings Sarah and John on 4 Jan 1849 in grave 17 of the Brown-Frith family plot.11 Based on his listed age at death of 15, he would have died in 1846. I have found no notice or record of his death.



1. Marriage Record, Sarah Brown to William Mason, 19 Sep 1830, Family Search. Cit. Date: 9 Jun 2014.
2. “New York, Passenger Lists, 1820-1957,” online images(accessed 12 May 2014), manifest, Henry Thompson, 11 Apr 1835, William Mason and Family. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
3. Interment Records, William Brown Family Plot Lot 161, Sec 2, Cypress Hills Cemetery, Sarah Mason, age 38, interred 14 Jan 1849 at the same time as her brothers John and George.
4. “Family Search,” database(accessed 10 Nov 2015), John Brown, 18 Sep 1814, son of William and Elizabeth Brown; citing Lewes, Sussex, England, reference; FHL microfilm 1,468,906.
5. Interment Records, William Brown Family Plot Lot 161, Sec 2, Cypress Hills Cemetery, John Brown, age 33, interred 14 Jan 1849 at the same time as his sister Sarah and brother George.
6. “New York, Passenger Lists, 1820-1957,” online images(accessed 12 May 2014), manifest, Henry Thompson, 11 Apr 1835, William Brown and Family. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
7. ibid.
8. 5. Interment Records, William Brown Family Plot Lot 161, Sec 2, Cypress Hills Cemetery, Marshall Brown, age 29, interred 10 Apr 1851.
9. 1865 NewYork State Census, Brooklyn Ward 2, Kings, New York, p. 59, family 422, line 33, James Brown 32, Brother, England, Laborer, married once, widower; digital images(accessed 13 Nov 2015).
10. Interment Records, William Brown Family Plot Lot 161, Sec 2, Cypress Hills Cemetery, James Brown, age 40, interred 30 Oct 1870. Not found in NY Death Index. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
11. Interment Records, William Brown Family Plot Lot 161, Sec 2, Cypress Hills Cemetery, George Brown, age 15, interred 14 Jan 1849 at the same time as his sister Sarah and brother John.

Chasing a Family Named Brown in New York

Just Kill Me Now!

WILLIAM BROWN and ELIZABETH HERIOTT

I was led to William and Elizabeth through their daughter Frances (Brown) Frith (1815-1854) who was interred in Cypress Hills Cemetery. My distant cousin Chris Beal had sent me a good bit of information, but with even more information online now it was important to take a second look. In hopes of learning more, I retraced some of Chris’s steps (he’s an excellent genealogist so it was easy to go down the path he had blazed) and contacted Cypress Hills to request a plot listing for Frances and those interred with her in the Brown-Frith plot, Sec 2, Lot 161. I received an interment list with 21 more people on it. Of those 21, I’ve been able to establish the familial relationship between Frances (Brown) Frith and 17 of those individuals, including her parents William and Elizabeth Brown.1 Many are William and Elizabeth’s children and grandchildren.
interments

Page 2 of the interment record which provided the "age at death" and interment date.

Page 2 of the interment record which provided the “age at death” and interment date.

There was also a major “breaking down the brick wall” moment with this family when I really paid attention to the 1868 Certificate of Death record of Elizabeth Heriott Brown.2
Eliz dc 1868 - Copy
In the summer of 2010, I found this record in Salt Lake City, but there was nothing else to help me at the time. I didn’t know where to look in Sussex, so I just tucked the file away and went to work other lines. This year, I decided to revisit each of my lines and write about them. In writing about a family your perspective changes and you have to go back and look for things you may not have looked at before. There has been an explosion in “searchable” online records in the last few years and suddenly the things I most needed began to fall into place.
The clues and questions in my file from 2010:
1. Her name – DUH! I didn’t really miss this one. Heriott had to be a family or maiden name. But 5 years ago, I found no records for an Elizabeth Heriott – NONE, NADA, ZIP, ZERO. They simply weren’t online in 2010.
2. The completeness of this record – records from this era are notoriously lacking in detail and normally would only give an age in years or say England. Why is this record so complete with a full name, age, and location of birth?
3. The address where she died. The address meant nothing at the time, but it factored in this time when I did a search and worked with the address.
4. The name of the doctor and his address. I knew that she had a son named Edward, but he wasn’t a doctor, and he wasn’t living in Brooklyn then. His address meant nothing to me in 2010, but by the time I revisited the family in 2015 it would mean more – half the damn Brown/Frith/Brimlow clan lived and worked with walking distance of this location.

Here’s what I now know about the family and how I know it.

WILLIAM BROWN was born about 1790 in the vicinity of Lewes, Sussex, England. I have used his birth year from the earliest found document that William would have provided the information for, which was an 1835 passenger list. Big surprise, there are several William Browns in that area of Sussex, and I have not yet determined which birth or christening record might be his.

ELIZABETH HERIOTT was born 6 May 1791 in Sussex, England. This information came from her 1868 death record which provided her age at death in days, months, and years along with her maiden name and place of birth. While this information is often suspect, I’m now comfortable accepting the information as I have discovered the person who created the 1868 death record was her grandson, Dr. Edward A. Brown, MD. Based on this information, I can now extend the research. While I’m fairly sure I’ve nailed her parents down, I’ll wait until I can look at the actual records to see if I can gather more information before declaring them here.

WILLIAM and ELIZABETH married on 23 or 25 Jul 1809, in Saint Nicholas Church, Brighton, Sussex, England. 3 Two marriage listings were found on FamilySearch and Elizabeth’s name is listed on both as Betty Herryott. I’ll be looking at the images for these records in Salt Lake City this spring before making a final determination. This could simply be a transcription error, or there may be some other reason for the two dates. I can at least say they were married in July of 1809. As stated in previous posts, people often married at the main cathedral rather than in their home parishes simply to save a bit of money. There was the standard fee to marry in your town, plus an added fee to the city or county for registration. If you went the main church, you only had to pay the fee for the city you were in.

While I haven’t yet located all the children’s baptism records, some of the family members appear to have been baptized in St. Anne’s in Lewes, and Lewes is about 10 miles outside of Brighton in the farmlands. I’ll be going through the films for the churches in Lewes on my next trip to Salt Lake City.

How did I know to look in Lewes? William Mason (son of William and Elizabeth’s oldest daughter Sarah) stated in his 1892 passport application that he was born in Lewes, and I found his birth was registered there.4 The birth registration also states that his mother and grandfather are from there, so it is reasonable to continue researching the Browns and Heriotts in this location.5
Wm 1931 Birth - Copy
William and Elizabeth had ten known children, all of whom were born in England. All of their children immigrated to New York – eight sailed aboard the Henry Thompson with William and Elizabeth, arriving on 11 Apr 1835.6 Oldest daughter Sarah’s husband William Mason and their two children, William and Henry, were also on that ship. Daughter Frances (Brown) Frith arrived in 1837 with husband William. I have not been able to determine exactly when son John Brown arrived.

The Brown and Mason families are at the bottom of the image.

The Brown and Mason families are at the bottom of the image.


The ten children as I currently know them:
Sarah Brown Mason (1811-1849) m. William Mason
John Brown (1814-1848)
Frances Brown Frith (1815-1854) m. William Frith
William Brown (1816-1856) m. Harriet (Unknown)
Edward Brown (1819-1906) m. Ann Burnett
Marshall Brown (1822-1851)
Catherine Brown (1824-????)
Mary Ann Brown Pringle (1826-1904) m. Robert William Pringle
James Brown (1829-1870) m. Unknown
George Brown (1831-1846)

From the time of arrival until their interment we’re reasonably able to trace William and Elizabeth. There is an 1840 Federal Census, 5th Ward, Brooklyn, Kings County that fits, but is typical of the 1840s – hardly perfect.7
1 Male 50-59 (1780-1790) William (b.1790)
1 Female 40-49 (1790-1800) Elizabeth (b.1791)
1 Male 20-29 (1810-1820) William (b.1816) or John (b.1814)
1 Male 15-19 (1821-1825) Marshall (b.1822)
1 Male 10-14 (1826-1830) James (b.1829)
1 Female 10-14 (1826-1830) Mary Anne (b.1826)
1 Female 5-9 (1831-1835) No known daughters this age, but there is a son George not accounted for who was born in 1831. Of note – Son Edward was married in 1839 so he doesn’t appear on this record. Daughter Catherine b. 1824 would have been 16 in 1840. It is possible, but not probable that she had married. It is also possible that she was simply missed in the numbers. However, it is much more likely that Catherine died prior to the 1840 census.

William’s occupation on the passenger list was farmer, which hardly seemed to mesh with someone coming to New York or Brooklyn. However, on the above shown birth record, his daughter Sarah states she is the daughter of “William Brown, pork butcher” of Lewes, Sussex.8 An 1844 New York directory lists “Brown, William, butcher, b.r. 343 Grand.”9

He was interred in Cypress Hills Cemetery in Brooklyn, Kings, New York, on 12 Aug 1848.10 His interment record lists his age at death as 63 (1785), but it’s not known who provided that information, nor is it known if William actually died in August 1848 or if he died earlier and was reinterred from elsewhere. I have not been able to locate a death record or obituary for him.

Locating Elizabeth between William’s 1848 death and her own death 20 years later was a real challenge. I first located her with her son William in 1850 in Ward 10 of Brooklyn.11 I have listed the family here in the same way they are listed on the record:
William Brown, 31 -1819, England, Painter
Elizabeth, 61 – 1789, England
James, 16 – 1834, Ireland, Painter – not our James who would be 5 years older
Harriet, 29 – 1821, England –
Charles, 4 – 1846, Pennsylvania
James, 3 – 1847, Pennsylvania
Margaret, 1 – 1849, Pennsylvania
There are also two borders who have no occupations and do not yet appear to be related.

In 1855, Elizabeth Brown, age 56 (1799) was found living with her youngest daughter Mary Ann and her husband Robert William Pringle in Brooklyn.12 She remained with Mary Ann and Robert for the remainder of her life. Elizabeth’s son James is with them in 1865, as is grandson William Brown.13

Elizabeth died from general debility compounded by pneumonia on 29 Jan 1868 in Brooklyn, Kings, New York, and was interred in Cypress Hills Cemetery on 31 Jan 1868.14 A death notice for Elizabeth appeared in The Brooklyn Daily Eagle on Thursday, 30 Jan 1868, pg 3, c2 “BROWN – On Wednesday, Jan 29th, at the residence of her son-in-law, R.W. Pringle, 114 Franklin ave, ELIZABETH BROWN, wife of Wm. Brown, deceased, of Sussex, England. In the 77th year of her age.” I found no will or probate records for Elizabeth. There are no stones or monuments in the family plot.
LOT cypress hills
The next post will be about their 10 children.



1. Interment Records, Cypress Hills Cemetery Plot Record for Lot 161 in Sec 2. Elizabeth H. Brown, age 76 interred 31 Jan 1868. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
2. New York death certificate 647 (1868), Elizabeth Heriott Brown, died 29 Jan 1868, born 6 May 1791 Sussex, England. Cit. Date: 9 Jun 2014.
3. Marriage Record, Saint Nicholas Church, Brighton, Sussex, England, William Brown and Betty Herryott, Marriage, St Nicholas’ Church Brighton, Brighton, Sussex, England, 25 Jul 1809; citing 00264, West Sussex County Record Office, Chichester; FHL microfilm 1FamilySearch.org. Cit. Date: 9 Jun 2014.
4. “U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925,” database and images, Ancestry.com (accessed 9 Nov 2015); William Mason born 13 Dec 1831, Lewes, Sussex, England, arrived 1835, a resident of New York City and Brooklyn since arrival, appliction dat 5 Apr 1892, Brooklyn, Kings, New York.
5. “U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925,” database and images, Ancestry.com (accessed 9 Nov 2015); William Mason born 13 Dec 1831, Lewes, Sussex, England, arrived 1835, a resident of New York City and Brooklyn since arrival, appliction dat 5 Apr 1892, Brooklyn, Kings, New York.
6. “New York, Passenger Lists, 1820-1957,” online images(accessed 12 May 2014), manifest, Henry Thompson, 11 Apr 1835, William Brown and Family. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
7. 1840 U.S. census, Brooklyn, Kings, New York, p. 620, line 16, William Brown; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 12 May 2014); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M704, roll 289. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
8. England, birth certificate for William Mason, Son of William and Sarah Mason, born 13 Dec 1831; Lewes, Sussex, England registration district, Non-Comromist and Non-Parochial Registers, 1567-1970, Piece 4674: Dr Williams’ Library, Index to Birth Certificates, 1828-1837 sub-district. Cit. Date: 9 Nov 2015.
9. 1844 Brown, William (p. 54) City Directories – New York – Fold3
10. Interment Records, Cypress Hills Cemetery Plot Record for Lot 161 in Sec 2. William Brown interred grave 13, 12 Aug 1848. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.
11. 1850 U.S. census, population schedule, Brooklyn Ward 10, Kings, New York, p. 188B, dwelling 1115, family 1845, Elizabeth Brown; digital images, Ancestry (accessed 9 Nov 2015); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M432, roll M432 520. Cit. Date: 9 Nov 201.
12. 1855, New York, population schedule, Brooklyn, E.D.1, Kings, New York, dwelling 345, family 446, line 34, Elizabeth Brown; digital images, Ancestry(accessed 9 Nov 2015).
13. 1865 NewYork State Census, Brooklyn Ward 2, Kings, New York, p. 59, family 422, line 31, Elizabeth Brown; digital images(accessed 9 Nov 2015).
14. Interment Records, Cypress Hills Cemetery Plot Record for Lot 161 in Sec 2. Elizabeth Brown interred grave 13, 31 Jan 1868. Cit. Date: 12 May 2014.