Fourth of July
President John Adams (b. 1735) passed away on the 4th of July in 1826.
From the diary* of Reverend George Whitney, who on June 30, 1826, led a small delegation into the home of the 90-year-old feeble and frail former President:
“Spent a few minutes with him in conversation, and took from him a toast, to be presented on the Fourth of July as coming from him. I should have liked a longer one; but as it is, this will be acceptable. ‘I will give you,’ said he, ‘Independence forever!’” He was asked if he would not add any thing to it, and he replied, “not a word.”
*July Fourth Toast by John Adams, 30 June 1826,” Founders Online, National Archives, accessed April 11, 2019, https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Adams/99-02-02-8030. [This is an Early Access document from The Adams Papers. It is not an authoritative final version.]
I don’t know what the fishing is like today in Pike County, PA, but here is an 1877 article from The Country, Vol I & II describing the experiences of one visitor to that area from April 1-4, 1877. During those 4 days, this visitor caught 400 fish weighing 45 pounds and brought back to New York 234 fish that “scaled 33 pounds honest weight.” Roughly 88 of them were between 8 – 13.5 inches in length; the other 150 or so, he said, were small trout, but not “fingerlings” — “fat as butter and excellent eating.” Obviously these were the days before any limits were introduced! Today he’d be able to walk away with just 5 trout per day, and each would have to be at least 7 inches long.
I love the great outdoors and that includes “escaping mentally” to the great outdoors of yesteryear to imagine what things must have been like in a certain location at a certain point in time. If you’re like me, and you enjoy fishing, perhaps you will find this article of interest too. Present-day fishermen and women in Pike Co., feel free to comment about your experiences fishing in that part of PA.
Happy 4th of July, All!
Credit: Google Books
Another sad story, I’m afraid; can’t seem to get away from them. This one dates back to July 4, 1899, a day that was surely a celebratory one for most Americans. But, sadly, injuries that day from toy pistols and firecrackers left a trail of misery for many families whose young boys died or were near death from tetanus within the subsequent two weeks. The area in and around the south shore of Long Island experienced an unprecedented number of cases of tetanus that July, circumstances that were widely reported upon in the NY/NJ newspapers.
Tetanus, a dangerous bacterial infection commonly referred to as ‘lockjaw’, can lead to an excruciatingly painful death if left untreated. It was only in 1924 that a vaccine appeared. Coincidentally the cause of tetanus was identified in 1899, and it was around that time that a treatment was developed whereby serum was injected directly into the brain to relieve symptoms. Today we take tetanus shots for granted, often forgetting our booster shots every 10 years. But tetanus was once a real killer.
One of the boys affected was Charles Reginald Brodhead, the 13-year-old son of Daniel Dingman Brodhead Jr. and Leonora Hubbard, and brother of Clement P., Maude, Mary Ann, and Lenore. (Daniel Dingman Brodhead Jr.’s dad, also named Daniel Dingman Brodhead, was my 2nd great grandfather‘s brother; Daniel Dingman Brodhead Jr.’s brother was the Wm H. Brodhead whose elopement was the topic of a recent post). There are some photos of Daniel and Leonora Brodhead with their three daughters on Ancestry dot com. I have not come across any of their two boys (the oldest son, Clement, died in 1968).
At the time of the incident, Charles and his family were living at La Tourette Place, Bergen Point, Hudson Co., New Jersey. Charles was injured slightly by a blank cartridge. His wound healed, and he felt well enough to take a steamboat excursion on the Long Island Sound on Friday, July 7. However, lockjaw set in soon thereafter and he was admitted to Bayonne Hospital where he experienced convulsions for several days and was treated with serum, before succumbing to tetanus on Thursday, July 13. He was buried in the Moravian Cemetery in New Dorp, Staten Island, two days later. Note: Anyone researching this family will find Charles’ father Daniel D. Brodhead buried here as well.
Some of the other boys lost to tetanus that summer included: Joseph Rezhofsky, 13; Martin Breen, 10; Wm. McNulty, 12; Joseph Lavinsky; Samuel Greenburg, 14; Charles Roth, 12; Christian Wm. Ritachel, 15; Gustavus Salinski, 16; Harry Morrisey, 11; Harry W. Squier, 11; Giuseppe Consumanno, 14; Lionel Briggs; Samuel Charles, 15; John Dowd, 11; and Dominick Stanton, 12.
Sometimes I get the impression that those who die young and/or childless tend to get short shrift when it comes to genealogical research. So I am glad I came upon this information on Charles Reginald Brodhead. The family trees I have seen that include him only contain a date and/or place of birth. It’s good to know what happened to him even if it was tragic. I think it’s important to remember these individuals; their lives were extremely precious to those closest to them; their presence in a family even for a brief time would have created a dynamic unlikely ever to have been forgotten.
- July 14, 1899: New York Times, “Death from Lockjaw in Bayonne“.
- July 14, 1899: New York Tribune, “Lockjaw Baffles Skill. Boys Die in Agony in Spite of Serum Treatment. Doctors Cannot Cope With the Terrible Disease”.
- July 15, 1899: The Jersey Journal, obit.
Happy 4th of July, Everyone! In honor of all my great grandfathers who participated in the Revolutionary War, I am re-posting last year’s listing of my ancestors. There have been a few edits/additions made since then. Enjoy your celebrations!
This 4th of July, we remember our ancestors who served in the Revolutionary War and, if they were married at that time, the wives who supported them in their service. Yes, nieces and nephews, these patriots are all directly related to you! They are your fifth/sixth great grandfathers!
- James Angus (b. 1751 in Scotland; d. 14 Mar 1806) Served in Albany County (NY) militia under Colonel Philip P. Schuyler (DAR ancestor no A002822); married Mary Magdaline Baker after the War (in 1781)
- Lt. Garrett Brodhead (b. 1733 Marbletown, NY; d. 1804 Stroudsburg, PA), served in the Northampton County, PA militia under Col. Brinigh, and served on the frontier. Somewhere I remember reading that he was friends with Gen. LaFayette, but I can’t remember where; I’ll try to search that out. Married to Jane Davis whose father Frederick also served in the War. Garret signed oath of allegiance. (DAR ancestor no. AO14785). Garrett was the brother of Brig. General Daniel Brodhead whose exploits are well documented. The brothers and their siblings and parents were among the earliest settlers of Pennsylvania’s Minisink Valley, having moved there in 1737 from Marbletown, NY, to settle 1000 acres of purchased land. Stroudsburg was initially known as Dansbury, after Garrett’s father Daniel. Another brother, Luke, also served in the Revolutionary War, attaining the rank of captain and serving on the staff of General Lafayette. From the book Colonial Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania: “He [Luke]enlisted in the spring of 1776 as third lieutenant. First American Rifle Regiment, Colonel William Thompson commanding. He was appointed second lieutenant, October 24, 1776, in Major Simon Williams’ regiment. He was wounded and taken prisoner at battle of Long Island. Later he was commissioned captain of the Sixth Pennsylvania Regiment under Colonel Magaw in Continental service. He retired in 1778 incapacitated by wounds received in battle.”
- Lt. Col. Samuel Crow, b. 1741, Woodbridge, NJ; d. 1801 Woodbridge, NJ; Service in NJ militia. (DAR Ancestor no: A028247); married to Elizabeth Potter.
- Frederick Davis b. 1701, Marbletown, NY; d. 1804 Stroudsburg, PA; Per Sylvester’s History of Ulster Co., NY, p. 74, Frederick signed articles of association for Ulster Co. (DAR Ancestor no: A030300); married to Margerie Van Leuven.
- Andrew Dingman Jr. b. 1752 Northampton Co., PA; d. 1839 Pike Co., PA. Served in the NJ militia as a staff officer with Captains Van Etten, Nelson, Homer, Westbrook; Took oath of allegiance in 1777. (DAR ancestor no. A032282). Married to Jane Westbrook. Father of Daniel Westbrook Dingman whose daughter Cornelia was married to Garret Brodhead (1793-1872).
- Andrew Dingman Sr. b. 1711 Kinderhook, Albany Co. NY; d. 1796 Dingman’s Ferry, Northampton Co., PA. Signed oath of allegiance in 1777; suffered depredations (DAR ancestor no. A032281). Married to Cornelia Kermer. Father of the aforementioned Andrew Dingman Jr.
- Capt. Samuel Drake, b. 1740 New Jersey; d. 1789 Lower Smithfield, Northampton Co., PA. Served in Capt. Jacob Stroud’s company (4th Battalion) of Pennsylvania militia, 1775, and as captain, 1776. (DAR ancestor no. A033472); married to Sarah Handy.
- Colonel James Easton (1728-96), was with Ethan Allen at Ticonderoga; commanded a Berkshire County regiment in the Canadian expedition, 1775. B. Hartford, CT; d. Pittsfield, MA. (DAR ancestor no. A035836); married to Eunice Pomeroy.
- Normand Easton b. 25 Jun 1758, Litchfield, CT; d. 1806, Greenville, NY; Private; served under Capt. Hine, Lt. Wm Preston, 13th Regiment Militia (DAR Ancestor no: A035842); married Merab Perry after the war.
- Pvt. Hezekiah Hand, b. cir 1730, d. ante 28 April 1800 in Westfield, NJ; private in the Essex Co., NJ militia, serving under Captain Benjamin Laing. (DAR ancestor no. A050961); married to Nancy.
- Samuel Barron Jaques, b. abt. 1740, d. 1798 Woodbridge, Middlesex Co., NJ; commanded Rahway Company during the Revolutionary War; married to Mary Coddington.
- Pvt. Isaac Newman (1731-1808), served as a private in the Associated Exempts of Westchester County at the battle of White Plains. b. Stamford, CT., d. Charlton, N. Y. (DAR ancestor no. A082986); married to Abigail Webb.
- Shubael Trowbridge, b. 1739 Morristown, NJ; d. 1782 Hanover, Morris Co., NJ. Served as a private in Capt. James Keene’s Company, Eastern Battalion, Morris County (NJ) Militia (also known as “The Rams Horns Brigades” (DAR ancestor no. A116272); married to Mary Bayles.
- David Wait, b. 1754 Edinburgh, Scotland; d. 1810 Perth Amboy, NJ. According to the 1893 Biographical and portrait cyclopedia of the Third congressional district of New Jersey, he came to the colonies as a British soldier, took part in an engagement at Manhattan Island, and was taken prisoner by Americans and retained as a POW in Jamestown, VA, until peace was proclaimed. He then went to Sussex, Essex Co., NJ, and finally settled in Perth Amboy, where he began working as a carpenter in the building known as the “Old Castle” on Water Street, the oldest building in the city. An entirely different account was offered by Harlan Mendenhall in his 1903 book, Presbyterianism in Perth Amboy, New Jersey: “He ran away from his native land to escape service in the army, but the troublous times in America aroused his sympathy and he enlisted in the Continental army. He was captured by the British forces and incarcerated in the Barracks. When peace was declared he became a resident in the city and his descendants are now on the rolls of our church.” Married Irene Bell after the war (in 1784).
- Johannis Westbrook (DAR Ancestor no: A123311); married to Marie.
- Capt. Martinus Westbrook, b. 1754, Sussex Co., NJ; d. 1813, Sussex Co., NJ. Served as a captain, 3rd Regiment, Sussex Co., NJ, Militia. (DAR ancestor no. A123311); married to Margaret Lowe.
- Lt. Elias Winans, b. 1742, Elizabethtown, NJ; d. 1789, Elizabethtown, NJ. Service: New Jersey (DAR ancestor no. A128111); married to Esther Perlee.
- Pvt. Enos Woodruff, b. 1749 Elizabethtown, NJ; d. 1821 Elizabethtown, NJ; served as a private in the Essex Co., NJ, militia. (DAR ancestor no. A128636); married to Charity Ogden.
- Major Reuben Potter, b. 1717 Woodbridge, NJ; d. 1799 Woodbridge, NJ; served under Col. Nathaniel Heard, lst Regiment, New Jersey Militia (DAR Ancestor #: A091752); married to Deborah (last name?, d. Oct 1, 1762).
Happy 4th of July!