52 Ancestors — #11: Baptist Robert Brush, My Irish Ancestor (sort of)

by , under 52 Ancestors, Family History Research, My Family History

Today, on St. Patrick’s Day, I’m writing about Baptist Robert Brush, my fourth great grandfather as the eleventh subject in my 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks series. He was born in about 1750 in Antrim, Northern Ireland. He had 11 children with Esther Gamble. He died in 1810 in Mercer County, Pennsylvania, at the age of 60. (For more on the 52 Ancestors series, see the end of this posting.)

Here is how he is related to me:

Baptist Robert Brush (1750 – 1810) is my 4th great grandfather
Baptist Brush (1784 – 1857) is the son of Baptist Robert Brush
Jane L Brush (1826 – 1900) is the daughter of Baptist Brush
Andrew Simpson Dingman (1853 – 1909) is the son of Jane L Brush
Wallace Betts Dingman (1881 – 1920) is the son of Andrew Simpson Dingman
Mary Jane Dingman (1908 – 1975) is the daughter of Wallace Betts Dingman
Wallace Dingman Huskonen is me, the son of Mary Jane Dingman

Actually, I haven’t learned much about Baptist, the father, and only a bit more about Baptist, the son. Here is what I found in History of Mercer County, Pennsylvania : Its Past and Present : Including Its Aboriginal History, Its Early Settlement and Development, published in 1888. The following is found on p. 1129 (note that even this source soon moves on to Baptist, the son):

Baptist Brush was one of the early settlers of Salem Township. He was a native of Ireland, and came to this county with his family [in] about 1798. He located on the farm now owned by Samuel North [in 1888], where he resided until his death. His son, Baptist, was born in Ireland in 1782, and had reached the age of sixteen when the family settled in Mercer County. He [the son] married Esther Simpson, whose parents [also] were from Ireland and early settlers of the county, and located on the homestead, where the balance of his life was passed. Eight children were born of this union, four of who are living, viz.: Simpson, John P., Jane, wife of Nelson Dingman, of West Salem, and Mary, wife of William Allen, of Salem Township. Baptist Brush was a sergeant in Capt. Gilliland’s company in the War of 1812. He died June 18, 1857, and his widow October 8, 1860, both in the faith of the United Presbyterian Church.

Here are the other brief facts I have learned about Baptist, the son: When he was born about 1782 in Limerick, Ireland, his father, Baptist Robert, was 32 and his mother, Esther, was 30. Baptist, the son, married Esther Simpson in about 1820. Their children are listed above. He was 73 when he died.

In the 1800 United States Federal Census, both Baptist, the father, and Baptist, the son, were enumerated living West Fallowfield Twp, Chester County, Pennsylvania. By 1810, the father and son had moved about 250 miles westward to Salem Twp, Mercer County, Pennsylvania, and they were enumerated in separate households in the 1810 U.S. Federal Census.

In 1812, Baptist, the son, served in Capt. Gilliland’s Company in the War of 1812.

The book, History of Mercer County, Pennsylvania : Its Past and Present, reports that Baptist and his brother, James were elders in the Presbyterian Church.

The 1820 U.S. Federal Census enumerates Baptist as living in Salem Twp, and it was sometime before then that he married Esther Simpson. Their first child, Mary, arrived in 1822, followed by Jonathan and Simpson [twins? or errors in birth years?] in 1825, and Jane in 1826. Some family trees have another son, James, born in 1839, but that seems unlikely to me because Esther’s age in 1839 would be 54, and because an explanation is suggested by the 1850 census, which you can see below.

In the 1830 and 1840 U.S. Federal Censuses, Baptist Brush was again enumerated as living in Salem Twp.

By the 1850 U.S. Federal Census, the Brush family household included Baptist, age 66; Ester [sic], age 65; Mary, age 27; and Jonathan, age 25. A boy 11 years of age by the name of James Johnson, also was enumerated as living in the household [this may be the James supposedly born to Baptist and Esther in 1829]. Occupations of Baptist and Jonathan were listed as “farmer.” The value of the real property was listed as $2000.

As noted above, Baptist passed away on 18 Jun 1856. Unfortunately, I have no information on where either Baptist, father or son, or their spouses were buried. Jane Brush, born on 07 May 1826 to Baptist and Esther, in Salem Twp, and died on 10 Mar 1900, in Williamsfield, Ashtabula County, Ohio, the wife of Nelson Dingman (who I will write about later), is buried in Park Lawn Cemetery in Jamestown, Mercer County, Pennsylvania.

The first records of my Brush ancestors are from Antrim in what is today Northern Ireland, so their family line probably originated in Scotland, and they should be considered Scots-Irish, rather than plain Irish. This conclusion would be supported by the involvement of Baptist, the son, as an elder in the Presbyterian Church in Salem Twp mentioned above.

So that’s the brief story of my ancestral immigrants from Ireland.

For more details on the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge, go here.

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