One little sentence can open up a whole can of worms, and I’ve found myself wallowing in a can of big, fat, juicy ones this past week. And all because of two little words: “William Baker”.
Following Daniel Brodhead Jr.’s death on the February 2, 1831, at age 75, a little funeral announcement appeared the next day in The Philadelphia Inquirer:
DIED: On Wednesday morning, the 2nd inst. Mr. Daniel Brodhead, in the 76th year of his age, who served as a Lieutenant in the revolutionary war.
His friends and acquaintances are particularly invited to attend his funeral, from the residence of his son-in-law, William Baker, in Buttonwood Street, above Tenth, tomorrow afternoon, at 2 o’clock.
That name (William Baker) was new to me. Daniel had five daughters, and I only knew the name of two of the daughters’ spouses, so I set out to try to figure out which of the remaining three daughters had been married to ‘William Baker’. This took some doing; in fact, it was only after I figured out some of the other spouses that I finally had a feeling about William Baker. And along the way, I unearthed all sorts of other things about Daniel. Isn’t that always the way? That’s what I meant about the can of worms. But, as exhausting as it was, now I have a decent tree fleshed out for Daniel Jr.’s line and have unearthed a bit more about him. So below is a timeline that offers a possible glimpse into some of his activities; I say “possible” because there is no way to know with 100% certainty, without doing much more research, that ALL references to Daniel Jr. herein actually refer to Colonel Brodhead’s son and not some other Daniel.
1776 (age 20): Rank of 1st Lieutenant attained on January 6. Unit: 3rd Pennsylvania Battalion. Captured at the surrender of Fort Washington on November 16.
1777 (age 21): POW throughout the year. Rank of Captain attained on Sept. 1.
1778 (age 22): Exchanged on August 26. Worked as a supernumerary officer.
1779 (age 23): Daniel Brodhead Jr. is mentioned in a letter (Fitzpatrick, pp. 480-481) from General George Washington to Colonel Daniel Brodhead (Sr.) in response to the latter’s attempt to secure a military post for Daniel Jr. (at Daniel Jr.’s request according to one of Fitzpatrick’s footnotes): ...It has been the misfortune of Many Officers in captivity to have been overlooked by their States, who had the power of all regimental appointments, which seems to have been the case with respect to Mr. Broadhead. Had he been appointed in the line, after so long an absence from you, I should not have refused him the opportunity of paying you a visit but as he has not, there cannot be a possibility of objection on my part.
From the book History of Wayne, Pike, and Monroe Counties (p. 935): [Col. Daniel Brodhead] …had only one son, also named Daniel (by his first wife, Elizabeth De Pue), who was also an officer during the Revolution. He was sent to Virginia in 1779, in charge of the prisoners of General Burgoyne’s army. If this is true, he could not have been in Virginia for long in that capacity as he retired from the military that year.
1781 (age 25): From the diary of Robert Morris, US Superintendent of Finance, on August 28: Mr. Danl. Brodhead entered in this Office as one of my Clerks (Morris, Aug-Sept 1781, p. 119, 121).
1782 (age 26): On May 29, Daniel Jr. was fired from his position by Robert Morris (Morris, April 16 – June 20, 1782, p. 280) – note: the spelling is Morris’s: …The Pennsylvania Commissioners for fitting out the Ships to defend the Bay and River Delaware called and executed the Contract for the Ship Washington Capt Barney. These gentleman informed me that Mr. Daniel Brodhead, one of the Clerks in this Office, had mentioned the Destination of that Ship, whereupon I sent for him and told him before them what was said. He very candidly acknowledged the Fact, alledging in excuse that he had heard it mentioned by other Persons before and therefore conceiving the thing to be known he had inadvertantly mentioned the matter in a Company, that it is the only time and the only thing he ever did mention out of this Office. Mr. Brodhead being a modest, well disposed young Man I am perswaded that this was an act of meer inadvertency, but the Consequences of imprudence or indiscretion in things of this nature may be as pernicious as if they proceeded from bad designs, therefore I dismissed him instantly from this office — sorry however for the Necessity he has laid me under to do so.
Also in 1782: Possibly living at his father’s home in Reading, PA, Daniel described the July 12, 1782, suicide that took place there of Captain Charles Craig, an intelligence officer during the Revolutionary War, who had a major disagreement with his father-in-law that turned ugly. In a letter written to a Walter Stone in Maryland, Daniel wrote: After taking such precautions as were requisite to prevent detection, he laid himself on the bed, raising his head, with several pillows, to a convenient height; He placed a muzzle of the pistol under one ear, and discharged its contents, which went thro’ his head. The report of the pistol brought up his brother Colonel Thomas Craig, who immediately burst open the door (he having had the precaution to bolt it on the inner side) But the unfortunate Charles was already quite dead.——-I ought here to take notice, that, least (sic) the pistol should by any means have proved ineffectual, he had provided his sword, which lay across his breast when his brother entered the room. So determined was he, on the preparation of this shocking deed. (Rubicam, Milton)
1783 (age 27): Daniel was the first merchant to arrive in the new frontier town of Louisville, Kentucky. At that time, there was no state of Kentucky. Virginia extended westward as the map of land claims indicates. I found mention of Daniel Jr. in a number of books, including one on the life of Daniel Boone: In 1783 Daniel Brodhead astonished the settlers by offering for sale goods from Philadelphia, having succeeded in freighting them from thence to Pittsburgh in wagons, and down the river in flat-boats. Even upon those days of simplicity arose the radiance of gaudy calico and overshadowing wool hats. It was a time of serious innovation. (Bogart, p. 305).
In a book on Chesapeake politics (Risjord, p. 236), I found the following on Daniel: Merchants who established themselves in Kentucky at the end of the war augmented the ranks of the court party, though few of them could claim Virginia ancestry. The first merchant in the newly erected town of Louisville at the falls of Ohio was Daniel Brodhead, Jr., son of the Pennsylvania colonel who had commanded at Pittsburgh in the last years of the war. Arriving in 1783, Brodhead established a commercial contact with George Rogers Clark and his cousin William, who were then surveying the Virginia military district across the river. These men, in turn, had interests in the down-river trade with New Orleans, and they had contacts with New Orleans merchants as a result of Clark’s military expeditions. Before long, Brodhead too had mercantile acquaintances in Spanish Louisiana.
On the Kentucky Educational Television site under the topic of Louisville Life, I found the following: According to “The Encyclopedia of Louisville”, the first dry goods store opened in Louisville in 1783. It was basically a double-sized log cabin with glass pane windows, featuring merchandise from Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. The store was located on the north side of Main St. between Fifth and Sixth Streets and was owned by Daniel Brodhead. This mercantile outlet was the precursor to department stores.
Another reference to Daniel’s store is contained in the book, A History of Ohio Falls Cities and Their Counties (p. 189): Another notable commercial event occurred after navigation opened this year — the opening of the first general store in Louisville, and the second in what is now the State of Kentucky, the first having been started at Boonesborough in April, 1775, by Messrs. Henderson & Co., the would-be founders of “the Province of Transylvania.” Mr. Daniel Brodhead was the happy man to expose, first amid the wildness of the Louisville plateau, the beautiful fabrics of the East to the linsey-clad dames and belles of the Falls city. Mr. Butler, in his History of Kentucky, says “it is believed that Mr. Broadhead’s was the first store in the State for the sale of foreign merchandise.” He transported his moderate stock in wagons from Philadelphia to Pittsburg, and thence on flat-boats they were floated down to Louisville. Mr. Collins says : ” The belles of our forest land’ then began to shine in all the magnificence of calico, and the beaux in the luxury of wool hats.” We add the following from Casseday’s History: The young ladies could now throw aside all the homely products of their own looms, take the wooden skewers from their ill-bound tresses, and on festive occasions shine in all the glories of flowered calico and real horn-combs.
It is not known whether it was this worthy Mr. Brodhead who was the first to introduce the luxury of glass window-lights, but it is certain that previous to this time such an extravagance was unknown, and there is an incident connected with the first window-pane which deserves a place here, and which is recorded in the words of an author who is not more celebrated for his many public virtues, than for his unceasing and incurable exercise of the private vice of punning. After referring to the introduction of this innovation, this gentleman says : “A young urchin who had seen glass spectacles on the noses of his elders, saw this spectacle with astonishment, and running home to his mother exclaimed, ‘O, Ma! there’s a house down here with specs on!”…
1784 (age 28): Daniel was still active in Louisville as is evidenced by the insurance he took out for some of his freighted goods (see article inset, The Baltimore Underwriter, p. 344).
1785 (age 29): From the History of Ohio Falls Cities and Their Counties (p. 183-184), came more information on Daniel Jr. On October 6th of that year James Sullivan and James Patton were appointed to superintend the sales of lots. Captain Daniel Brodhead was subsequently appointed in place of Patton. The superintendents of sales were authorized to bid on lots “as far as they may think necessary, or nearly their value, which purchases are to be considered as subject to the further direction of the trustees.” December 9, 1785, it was resolved “that all the land from Preston’s line to the mouth of Beargrass [Daniel Jr. owned the “point over Beargrass” according to p. 149 of this book] and up said creek to said line be sold to the highest bidder, and also all the land that remains on this side of said creek at the mouth, thereof, exclusive of the thirty feet allowed for a road between the Bottom squares and the Ohio.” All the remaining land of the one thousand acre tract, formerly Connolly’s, was ordered sold the next February to “the highest bidder for ready cash.”
1788 (age 32): Daniel sold all of his Jefferson Co., Kentucky, goods (Early Kentucky Settlers, p. 374): Daniel Brodhead, Jr. of Jefferson Co. sold to Richard Jones Waters of said county his goods, chattels, and all his personal property, farm implements, cattle, sheep, a negro woman, also horses, including young stallion purchased from John Severns, his interest in a stud horse late the property of Samuel Boon purchased at Sheriff’s sale by Brodhead in partnership with Samuel Wells, 4 wagons, gears for 16 horses, etc., log chains and trace chains, stock of all kinds, timbers belonging to Brodhead, in Louisville or elsewhere, his furniture, rifle-gun, rugs, cherry cupboard, one chocolate pot, pewter ware, etc. August 4, 1788. Recorded September 2, 1788.
Also in 1788: (Early Kentucky Settlers, p. 375) Daniel Brodhead [the father] of the Burrough of Reading, Berks Co., Pa. appoints his son Daniel Brodhead Jr., his lawful attorney to collect from James Francis Moore and James Sullivan of Kentucky, his former agents, all money and all such other matters as they had in trust for him. March 1, 1787. Witnesses: Charles Jno. Biddle, John Christian Hondebier. Recorded September 2, 1788. Father and son, evidently, still in good rapport.
1790 (age 34): (Early Kentucky Settlers, p. 383) Elijah Logan Hall [Hale?] of Louisville, now intending a journey to Fauquier Co., in the Old Settlement, appoints his friend Benjamin Johnston, his lawful attorney, to represent him in all matters of business. Revokes all other powers of attorney, especially the one to Daniel Brodhead Jr. to transact business with Colo Harry Lee of Virginia. August 24, 1790. The emphatic “especially” is particularly intriguing.
1790-1797 (age 34-41): After Daniel Jr. left Kentucky, he spent time living in Richmond, Virginia (Goodwill & Smith, p. 136). So he must have spent at least some of these years there.
1798 (age 42): Daniel is listed on p. 59 of the book Centennial anniversary of the Pennsylvania Society, for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery, the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage: And for Improving the Condition of the African Race published by the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery. Philadelphia is given as his place of residence. C.W. Stafford’s Philadelphia Directory lists his place of residence as: 214 High Street (later known as Market Street; current location of Campo’s Philadelphia Deli). His father lived steps away at 226 High Street, current home of Mac’s Tavern.
1799: Stafford’s City Directory still shows the father and son living at their respective residences on High (Market) Street.
1800 (age 44): Daniel’s father, former General Daniel Brodhead who served as Surveyor-General from 1789-1800, retired to Milford, Pennsylvania, after spending the previous decade in Philadelphia. In 1795 he is known to have lived next to the southeast corner of Seventh and Market Streets (Jackson, p. 194). It was on the southwest corner of that intersection that Thomas Jefferson had written the Declaration of Independence between June 11-28, 1776.
Stafford’s 1800 city directory still shows the pair at their respective residences, the only change is that Daniel Jr.’s occupation (not listed in the previous two year’s editions) is “tanner” (Merriam-Webster’s definition #1: “one who tans hides” as opposed to definition #2: “one who acquires or seeks to acquire a suntan” – injecting some levity here!).
Once Daniel Jr. relocated to Philadelphia in cir. 1898 (when he surfaces in the city directory listings), were father and son on good terms? I would think so given that they lived in such close proximity to each other. But something must have happened between then in the course of the next few years because the fallout was certain in August of 1803 when the General set his hand to his last will and testament and omitted Daniel Jr.
1800-1802: The son appears to have finally taken a stab at married life, and he did it in a pretty big way. Some family trees I’ve seen have listed Daniel Jr.’s wife as “Christian Abel”; that may well have been her name, but I have yet to see any proof of that. In any case, I must say that I feel slightly suspicious that “Christian” may have been a second wife since Daniel Jr. would have been between the ages of 47-58 when his six known children were born: Ellen (1803), Juliana (1805), Amanda (b. Phila., cir 1807), Evelina (1809), Mira (1812), and Daniel (1814) .
1801-1808: Daniel Jr. is absent from the Philadelphia City Directory. Was he no longer in the city or just living in someone else’s household?
1808 (age 52): The Tickler article of October 5 alluded to Daniel Jr. as having married a woman in Virginia and abandoning her and their small children. Had that been a first wife? Or is that a reference to ‘Christian Abel’ and her first 3 children born between 1803 and 1807? (The problem with that is that all of ‘Christian’ and Daniel’s children were born in Pennsylvania, not Virginia.) The article also alleges Daniel Jr. to have been Daniel Sr’s illegitimate son. Was that the public’s assumption regarding Daniel Jr. after he was omitted from his father’s will? That said, the General did not die until November 15, 1809; would the will have been made public prior to that for people to have been able to draw such a conclusion? Or was this gossip that had been tossed about for a long time?
Another Tickler article appeared a month later on November 9: A fellow called major Brodhead, who frequently boasted since the governor’s election, that he was one who had assisted in naturalizing the 500 aliens, recently solicited alms, in a certain billiard room, for one of the new made citizens, under the plea that he was a seafaring man thrown out of employ by the embargo. Now, although we do not know by what right Brodhead claims the title of major, we wish major Wash-tub to inform the public, whether the man for whom he solicited alms, is a seaman ; or whether he does not keep a sailor’s boarding house in Southwark. Further — major Wash-tub is requested to state, whether he ever received favors, similar to those he solicited for his protegee?
1809 (age 53): Daniel Sr. dies in Milford, Pike Co., PA, on November 15, and is buried in the Milford Cemetery. Daniel Jr. is listed in Robinson’s Philadelphia Directory: Broadhead, Danl., accomptant, N. Broad.
1810 (age 54): Daniel Jr. is again listed in Robinson’s Philadelphia Directory: Broadhead, Daniel, accomptant, North Broad. The 1810 Census shows the family living in South Mulberry Ward, Philadelphia. The household included 1 male under 10, 1 male aged 10-16, and 1 male aged 45 and older (Daniel Sr.). I don’t know who the 2 male children could have been because presumably son Daniel was not born until 1814. There were 5 girls under the age of 10, 1 between the age of 10-16, and 1 aged 26-44 (‘Christian Abel’). I don’t know who the 5th girl under the age of 10 could have been since Mira was born in 1812, nor do I know who the girl aged 10-16 could have been.
1813 (age 57): Daniel Brodhead Jr. is listed among numerous insolvent debtors in a newspaper notice that appeared in Daniel Poulson’s American Daily Advertiser (Philadelphia) on Wednesday, March 3, 1813. His profession is listed as “Accomptant” (an accountant). His creditors are listed as M. Randall, Henry Sparks, and Benjamin Noner. Kite’s Philadelphia Directory for 1814 lists Daniel: Brodhead Daniel, accomptant north Broad and 24 Strawberry.
1814 (age 58): Kite’s Philadelphia Directory carries the same listing: Brodhead Daniel, accomptant north Broad and 24 Strawberry.
1816 (age 60): Robinson’s Philadelphia Directory lists Daniel Jr.: Broadhead, Daniel, accomptant, North Broad. Daniel offers bail for Jane Baker, mother of the notorious Ann Carson. Mrs. Baker had been implicated in her daughter’s attempted kidnapping of Governor Simon Snyder. See New York Evening Post article – October 31, 1816. Was Jane Baker, perhaps, related to Daniel’s aforementioned son-in-law William Baker? This was a huge scandal worthy of its own blog post, but for a quick synopsis, click here. For the whole story, click here. Update 6/13/13: Daniel’s role was that of professional bail bondsman. (Branson, p. 62)
1817 (age 61): Per Robinson’s Philadelphia Directory he is still at the same location: Broadhead, Daniel, accomptant, North Broad.
1818 (age 62): On March 27, Daniel Jr. appeared in District Court in Philadelphia to confirm his identity as a veteran of the Revolutionary War and to request a pension due to his “reduced circumstances in life”. (Goodwill and Smith, p. 136) Paxton’s Philadelphia Directory shows a change of address: Brodhead, Daniel, accomptant, 17 Arch.
1819 (age 63): According to Paxton’s Philadelphia Directory, Daniel is now several doors away: Brodhead, Daniel, accountant, 12 Arch.
1820 (age 64): On August 11, Daniel appeared in Court again to affirm his identity and to demand Bounty Land promised to him by the US for having served as an officer in the War. (Goodwill and Smith, pp. 137-138)
The 1820 Census shows the family living in Philadelphia’s High Street Ward. But now there are only 7 in the household: 1 male over 45 (Daniel Jr), 1 female under 10 (must be Mira), 3 females aged 10-16 (presumably Juliana, Amanda, and Evelina), and 2 females aged 16-26 (one was probably Ellen, but who was the 2nd?). It appears that ‘Christian Abel’ and young son Daniel may have passed away by then, but I have not yet found proof of that. Whitely’s Philadelphia Directory shows an additional occupation (scrivener – a.k.a. notary): Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener and accountant, 12 Arch.
1821 (age 65): M’Carty Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener and accountant, 12 Arch.
1822 (age 66): M’Carty Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener and accountant, 12 Arch.
1823 (age 67): Desilver’s Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener and accountant, 12 Arch.
1824 (age 68): Desilver’s Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, accountant, 12 Arch.
1825 (age 69): Wilson’s Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, conveyancer and accountant, 12 Mulberry.
1828 (age 72): Desilver’s Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener, 12 Mulberry.
1829 (age 73): Desilver’s Philadelphia Directory: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener, 12 Mulberry.
1830 (age 74): I could not find the family in the 1830 Census, but Desilver’s Philadelphia Directory carried this listing: Brodhead, Daniel, scrivener, 12 Mulberry.
1831 (age 75): Dies on February 2 in Philadelphia. Funeral procession departing from son-in-law William Baker’s home on Buttonwood Street. Burial place not stated.
1835: His estate is appraised on January 8. It consists of acreage in Henderson Co., Kentucky, transferred to him by “Military Warrant No. 3490”: …2666-2/3 acres — 766-2/3 ares of which remain unallocated and which we value at ——— $600. (Goodwill and Smith, p. 139).
So all of that research was triggered by those two little words “William Baker”– so whose husband was he? Juliana’s.
If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading, and as always, your comments, corrections, and suggestions are welcome!
Update 4/28/14: From the book History of Wayne, Pike, and Monroe Counties, p. 935:
[Col. Daniel Brodhead] …had only one son, also named Daniel (by his first wife, Elizabeth De Pue), who was also an officer during the Revolution. He was sent to Virginia in 1779, in charge of the prisoners of General Burgoyne’s army. He subsequently settled in Virgina and raised a family. Colonel James O. Brodhead, of St. Louis, MO, who has achieved a national reputation, is a grandson of his.
This obviously raises more questions that need to be looked into. Daniel Jr. supposedly retired in 1779, so if in fact he was sent to Va., he must not have been there that long. On the surface, this does seem to corroborate other sources alleging that a wife existed in KY/VA, at a time prior to when Daniel Jr. established a family in Philadelphia ca 1800-1802.
Note: It would seem that History of Wayne, Pike, and Monroe Counties is incorrect about James O. Brodhead being one of Daniel Jr.’s grandsons, unless there is another James O. Brodhead that was born in St. Louis. This is the only one I have found: James Overton Broadhead; born in Charlottesville, VA, 29 May 1819; died 7 Aug 1898 in St. Louis. The article ‘Ardent Unionist, Unrepentant Slaveholder’ contains a wealth of information about this James including that he was the son of Achilles Brodhead, who was ‘commissioned by Thomas Jefferson to survey the grounds that became the University of Virginia.’ After a bit of digging, I learned that Achilles’ father was a Jonathan Broadhead (from A History of the City of St. Louis and Vicinity, The Pioneers and Their Successors compiled and published by John Devoy, St. Louis, 1898: “Mr. Broadhead’s grandfather, Jonathan Broadhead, came to this country from Yorkshire, England, during the Revolutionary War and settled in Albemarle County”).
- The Baltimore Underwriter: A Weekly Journal Devoted to the Interests of Insurance in All Its Branches, Vol. XIII, January – June 1875 (Baltimore: Bombaugh & Ransom Publishers and Proprietors).
- Bogart, William Henry. Daniel Boone And The Hunters Of Kentucky (New York and Auburn: Miller, Orton & Mulligan, 1856).
- Susan Branson. Dangerous to Know: Women, Crime, and Notoriety in the Early Republic. (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008).
- Early Kentucky Settlers: The Records of Jefferson County, Kentucky from the Filson Club History Quarterly (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. for Clearfield Co., 2007).
- Fitzpatrick, John C., editor.The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources, 1745-1799, Volume 14 (January 12, 1779 – May 5, 1779) by George Washington, John Clement Fitzpatrick, David Maydole Matteson. United States George Washington Bicentennial Commission.
- Goodwill, Anne, and Jean Smith. The Brodhead Family: The Story of Captain Daniel Brodhead, His Wife Ann Tye, and Their Descendants, Vol. II (Port Ewen, NY: Brodhead Family Association, 1988).
- The History of Ohio Falls Cities and Their Counties: Illustrations and Biographical Sketches, Vol. I (Cleveland: L.A. Williams and Co., 1882).
- Jackson, Joseph. America’s Most Historic Highway: Market Street Philadelphia (Philadelphia & NY: Wannamaker, 1926).
- Mathews, Alfred. History of Wayne, Pike, and Monroe Counties, Pennsylvania (Philadelphia: R. T. Peck and Co., 1886).
- Morris, Robert. The Papers of Robert Morris, 1781-1784: August-September 1781 (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1975).
- Morris, Robert. The Papers of Robert Morris, 1781-1784: April 16-July 20, 1782 (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1980).
- Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery. Centennial anniversary of the Pennsylvania Society, for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery, the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage: And for Improving the Condition of the African Race (Philadelphia: Grant, Faires & Rodgers, Printers, 1875).
- Risjord, Norman K. Chesapeake Politics: 1781-1800 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1978).
- Rubicam, Milton. Evidence: An Exemplary Study, A Craig Family Case History. Special Publication No. 49. (Washington DC: National Genealogical Society, 1981).
Philadelphia Directory Listings:
Resources on Ann Carson:
- The trials of Richard Smith, late lieutenant in the 23d Regiment U. States infantry, as principal, and Ann Carson, alias Ann Smith, as accessory, for the murder of Captain John Carson, on the 20th day of January 1816. Ebook on openlibrary.org
- Susan Branson. Dangerous to Know: Women, Crime, and Notoriety in the Early Republic. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008. ISBN 978-0-8122-4088-7
- Essay: Crime, Class Consciousness and Narrative in the Early Republic
Map Credit: Florida Center for Instructional Technology at University of South Florida: http://etc.usf.edu/maps.
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