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Civil War Blog

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The Brothers David Brown and Samuel E. Brown – Family Photos

Posted By on May 12, 2014

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David Brown

Previously, in a post entitled David Brown – 177th Pennsylvania Infantry, two photos of David Brown of Pillow, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, were presented.  Now, another photograph has come to light which shows David Brown (1837-1902) later in life with his four grown children:

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David Brown is seated in center, between his son John Adam Brown (1865-1902) and wife Catherine “Kate” [Gottshall] Brown (1836-1907).  Standing, left to right, are Charles Monroe Brown (1868-1940), Magdalena “Maggie” Brown (1866-1921), and Sarah J. Brown (1862-1927).

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Samuel E. Brown & Mary Brown

Also found among the family photo collection was a picture of David Brown‘s brother Samuel E. Brown (1844-1911) and his wife Mary.  It is highly probable that this is the same Samuel E. Brown who served in the 210th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company H, as a Private, from 14 September 1864 through honorable discharge on 31 May 1865.  Samuel was an apprentice shoemaker in 1860 and living in the household of Edward Reedy, a master shoemaker in Lykens Township, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania.  At the time, Edward Reedy, one of the sons of Leonard Reedy of Gratz, gunsmith, was married to Sarah Brown, the sister of David Brown and Samuel E. Brown.  Some time after serving in the Civil War, Samuel E. Brown moved to Brookville, Ogle County, Illinois, and from there to Forreston, also in Ogle County.  The Pension Index Card from Fold3 (below) notes that he died in Forreston, Illinois, on 2 February 1911.

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Samuel E. Brown is buried at the White Oak Cemetery in Forreston, along with his wife, Nancy A. Brown (see Findagrave) Was this a second wife? The Pension Index Card (above) notes that a widow applied for pension benefits on 8 February 1911.

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 The similar record, from Ancestry.com (above) names the widow as Nancy A. Brown.

The 1880 Census for Brookville, has the wife as Mary A. Brown, with two children in the household:  Anna A. Brown, born about 1868; and John W. Brown, born about 1877.  There is no census available for 1890.  However, the 1900 Census for Forreston, has the same children with the wife named as Nancy Brown – and both Samuel and Nancy married for 33 years!  This leans toward the conclusion that Mary and Nancy are the same person.

A second mystery involving Samuel E. Brown centers on his military service.  A record in Bates states that there were two men named Samuel E. Brown who were enrolled in the 210th Pennsylvania Infantry.  The first, named above and verified by the Pension Index Card, served in Company H.  However, there is a second entry for a Samuel E. Brown who served in Company B and who deserted the same day he was mustered into service.  Could this be the same person and a clerical error resulted in him not being properly transferred to Company H?

The Registers of Pennsylvania Volunteers note that on 10 September 1864, a 22-year old Samuel Brown was mustered into Company B and then deserted the same day.  Then, on 14 September 1864, a 20year old Samuel Brown was mustered into Company H, and served until discharge in 1865.  for some insight into the desertions that occurred in the 210th Pennsylvania Infantry, see:  Desertions in Company H – 210th Pennsylvania Infantry.


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