Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Susanna Brooks and Husband Ezekiel Harlan (2)

Pennsylvania Gazette (20 September 1753), p. 3, col. 2

Or, Subtitled: “Wears a cap or wig, black velvet jacket and breeches, and ruffled ſhirts, but may change his apparel”

My previous posting tells you that Susanna Brooks and her husband Ezekiel Harlan have led me on a merry chase as I’ve tried to figure out even the most basic facts about them on the basis of limited evidence, including which particular Ezekiel Harlan Susanna married, when she was born, when and where the couple met, and when and where they died. I’ve become fairly confident that the Ezekiel Harlan whom Susanna married was an Ezekiel Harlan who was born in 1769-1770, and was the son of Ezekiel Harlan (born 1732-6) who was son of Ezekiel Harlan (1707-1754) and wife Hannah Oborn of Chester County, Pennsylvania. To add to the confusion created by the plethora of Ezekiels in this line, the Ezekiel Harlan born in 1769-1770 had a son Ezekiel, too, who was likely born around 1787-8, and who appears in records of Hardin County, Kentucky, along with his father.

Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Susanna Brooks and Husband Ezekiel Harlan

Hardin County, Kentucky, Deed Bk. D, pp. 426-8

Or, Subtitled: “From there on, all trace is lost”

Working on the family of Susanna Brooks Harlan, a daughter of Thomas Brooks and Margaret Beaumont/Beamon’s, has been a real trip — significant gaps in records, wild twists and turns, hypothetical possibilities that I can’t prove, but which seem tantalizingly close to the truth. I can think of few other genealogical research projects I’ve undertaken in which I’ve encountered such surprises, with so many uncertainties and tangles. What follows is my attempt to sort out the tangles. My conclusions may be wildly wrong, but this is my best attempt to put together the facts as I can find them, and make a coherent narrative out of them.

Children of Jesse Brooks (1783/1786 – 1860) and Wife Mary: Elizabeth, Thomas, William, and James (1)

J.H. Spencer, A History of Kentucky Baptists, vol. 1 (Cincinnati: J.H. Spencer, 1886), pp. 388-9

Or, Subtitled: “Fabulous tales have been set afloat”

I have not located probate records for Jesse Brooks, son of Thomas Brooks and Margaret Beaumont/Beamon, who died in Edmonson County, Kentucky, on 30 January 1860. As far as I know, no one else has found an estate file for Jesse, either, and no document has been located that provides a list of his children. 

Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Jesse Brooks (1783/1786 – 1860)

Kentucky State Archives, Kentucky Birth, Marriage and Death Records (1852-1910), microfilm #994063, available digitally at Ancestry in the database Kentucky, U.S., Death Records, 1852-1965 (Edmonson County Deaths 1859-1860)

Or, Subtitled: “Sir, this is to let you no that you may let robert humprey hav mareg lisons”

Jesse Brooks, son of Thomas Brooks and Margaret Beaumont/Beamon, was born in Frederick County, Virginia, in 1783-1786. His death listing in the 1860 death register of Edmonson County, Kentucky, shows him dying in that county on 30 January 1860, aged 75.[1] A digital image of the death listing is above. This document states that Jesse’s parents were Thomas and Margaret Brooks and that he was born in Virginia. 

Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Robert Brooks (1780 – 1847)

Biographical History of Tippecanoe, White, Jasper, Newton, Benton, Warren and Pulaski Counties, Indiana, vol. 2 (Chicago: Lewis, 1899), p. 1049

Or, Subtitled: “Respected citizens, and … consistent members of the Methodist church”

The obituary of Robert Brooks, son of Thomas Brooks and Margaret Beaumont/Beamon, in the Methodist publication Western Christian Advocate states that he was born 8 November 1780 in Frederick County, Virginia.[1] His tombstone in Abbot cemetery at Fickle in Clinton County, Indiana, states that he died 14 June 1847, aged 60 years and 7 months.[2] Note that the date of birth implied by this tombstone inscription would be 14 November 1786, which conflicts with the date stated in Robert’s obituary. The 1830 federal census puts him in the 1780-1790 age category, while the 1840 federal census shows him born between 1790 and 1800.[3] I find Robert first appearing on the tax list in Wythe County, Virginia, in 1803, which suggests that he was born by or before 1785.[4]

See Find a Grave memorial page of Robert Brooks, Abbot cemetery, Fickle, Clinton County, Indiana, created by Thelma Brooks Morgan, maintained by TCHA Research Library, with a tombstone photo by Thelma Brooks Morgan

Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Ruth Brooks (1775/1780 – 1837) and Husband William Greenwood (1)

John Carroll Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois (Springfield, Illinois: Edwin A. Wilson, 1876), p. 335

Or, Subtitled: “The Greenwood family is one, around which cluster many interesting reminiscences”

Ruth Brooks was, I’ve concluded, the fifth child of Thomas Brooks and Margaret Beaumont/Beamon of Frederick and Wythe Counties, Virginia. When I say “I’ve concluded,” I don’t mean there’s uncertainty about whether Ruth was a child of Thomas and Margaret. Thomas’s 4 November 1804 will in Wythe County names daughter Ruthie Greenwood.[1]

Children of Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747 – 1805) and Wife Margaret: Margaret Brooks (1772 – 1857) and Husband Joseph Day

Kentucky State Historical Society and State Archives, Grayson County, Kentucky, Registry of Deaths 1857, in Kentucky Birth, Marriage, and Death Records, 1852-1910digitized at the Family Search site

Or, Subtitled: “Joseph Day Junr hath been Guilty of unneceſsary frequenting places of divertion & dancing”

In this posting, I’m returning to my ongoing project of tracking family lines stemming from Mary Brooks, who died in Frederick County, Virginia, in 1787. In previous postings, I’ve tracked the following children of Mary and their descendants: Mary (1745/1750 – abt. 1815), who married Jacob Hollingsworth; Elizabeth (1747/1750 – 1816), who married George Rice; Sarah (1750/1755 – 1810/1820), who married an Ashdale/Asdale/Asdell; and James, who did not marry. As I’ve also noted in this series of postings about the children of Mary Brooks, I know nothing about her daughter Susanna except that Mary’s will identifies Susanna as Susanna Haynes. 

Mary Brooks (d. 1787, Frederick County, Virginia): What I Know (and Don’t) about the Earliest Generation of This Brooks Family

Transcript of will of Mary Brooks, 9 July 1786, Frederick County, Virginia, Will Bk. 5, p. 158

Or, Subtitled: “Of English Descent” or “a Native of Ireland” — Take Your Pick

As I stated at the end of my penultimate posting, after having shared with you the information I have about Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747- 1805), I now want to focus on Thomas’s mother Mary Brooks, who died testate in Frederick County, Virginia, with a will dated 9 July 1786.[1] Mary’s will was proven in Frederick County court on 4 April 1787, so she died at some point between those two dates. This will is just about the sum total of what I know of this Brooks family in the generation prior to Thomas Brooks. 

Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747-1805): Wythe County, Virginia Years, 1793-1805

Will of Thomas Brooks, 4 November 1804, Wythe County, Virginia, Wythe County, Virginia, Will Bk. 1, pp. 308-9

Or, Subtitled: Fertile New Land, Lead Mines, Shot Towers and Forges, and Movement from the Middle Colonies into the Valley of Virginia

With my first posting about Thomas Brooks (abt. 1747-1805), I shared my information about Thomas’s life in Frederick County, Virginia, up to 1792, when he moved his family to Wythe County, Virginia. My account begins with a March 1767 deed of Patrick Rice to his son John, which Thomas witnessed, the first certain record I have of him in Frederick County. Since, as my posting indicates, I have not found information about Thomas’s father, I haven’t been able to track this family line sufficiently to say with any certainty where Thomas Brooks was born — a point to which I’ll return when I discuss in more detail the information I have about Thomas’s mother Mary, who made her will in Frederick County on 9 July 1786, with the will being probated on 4 April 1787.