Herkimer, NY

Family Info and Will

I started working on this Brown family a couple of years ago with a descendant in Alberta, Canada. She was linked to the Farmer family after one of the Brown's married a Farmer. I mention some of the other connecting names in the article for those hoping to catch a link to the ever popular Brown surname. Also, by listing some of these names it proves this Brown family were among earlier inhabitants in the Town of Herkimer and especially in the Kast Bridge area.

Betsy Voorhees
Town of Herkimer Editor

ICHABOD BROWN (sometimes spelled Icabod) should be included as one of the earlier inhabitants in the town of Herkimer. This proof is in his marriage on May 29, 1797 at Herkimer, New York, eight years after the town of Herkimer was formed, at which time he married Rebecca Griswold in Herkimer, daughter of Sgt. Moses and Anna (Holcomb) Griswold, born in Windsor, CT on September 12, 1776. Her father was a soldier in the Revolution, and her grandfather, Capt. Moses Griswold, Sr., fought in the French and Indian War. She was sixth in descent from Edward Griswold, who was born in England in 1607, and arrived in New England in 1639.

The following information was obtained in court records and information included in the Will files held at Herkimer, New York. Other pertinent information was obtained from a descendant in Alberta, Canada.

Ichabod Brown was born April 1, 1775 at Hancock (Berkshire County), Massachusetts to Jacob Brown and Ruth (unknown). A diligent search of records in Herkimer, NY and Hancock, MA have never revealed Ruth's surname by previous researchers. Most early settlers in Hancock, MA originated from Rhode Island or Eastern Connecticut, therefore, it is believed Ichabod's father Jacob came from one of those areas. Although not proven at this time, it is thought Ruth's last name was Gardner.

Ichabod was one of the first settlers amongst the rolling hills of West Canada Creek in the Kast Bridge area. His property was listed in the Winnes Patent bordering West Canada Creek and across the plank highway known now as Route 28 on the westerly side of the creek, including a small island.

Ichabod also at one time ran a tavern at Kast Bridge, according to one of his descendants, who found this information during her research. The exact spot of the tavern is unknown at this time. Descendants relay that many weary travelers hitched their horse/stagecoach here and joined the other local folks who found this a cozy place to stop and chat. Ichabod's farming product was mainly cheese made at his dairy farm, together with a variety of other farm products. At the time of his death Ichabod was the owner of the Newport Distillery, believed to be in the Town of Newport, NY.

Ichabod Brown was a soldier in the War of 1812. In 1814 he was ensign in the 40th Regiment of Light Infantry at Herkimer, and in 1816 was promoted to lieutenant. He was a very prosperous farmer in Herkimer from the time of his marriage until his death, which occurred on March 20, 1833. His wife Rebecca died on February 24, 1852. They were both buried in the old Myers Cemetery in Herkimer, NY.

Ichabod and Rebecca are recorded as having the following children and were named in his will: Ichabod Gardner, Adrian, Ann, Ruth, John Griswold, Henry, William Lamport, Jane Elizabeth, Nancy and Harriet.

Articles found in papers with his will described Ichabod as a short, man weighing over 300 pounds. It was also noted that Ichabod had much difficulty boarding his coach/carriage; therefore, he had one made lower to the ground enabling him to get on or off unassisted.

Other information gleaned on this family is:

Margaretha (Peggy) Herder m. 10 Nov 1822 (H1-216) Adrian Brown b. 11 Dec 1802 d. 18 Mar 1878 age 75 (HD 6-27-1878) at Herkimer, NY., son of Icabod Brown and Rebecca Griswold.

Christopher Harter m. 3l Dec 1829 Ann Brown D. 7 May 1837 dau. of Icabod (Brown Family, descendants of Jacob and Ruth Gardner Brown. pub. 1940); moved to Scriba, and then Jefferson County, New York.

Helen Herder age 21, m. 19 Mar 1835 (H2-219) William Lamport Brown age 21, b. ? Feb 1814, d. 22 Oct 1842, son of Icabod Brown and Rebecca Griswold, lived Oswego County. Helen then married 2nd William Brayton, and lived Hubbardston, Mich.

John Griswold Brown, born 15 July 1809 at Herkimer, married Amanda Jones, daughter of Richard and Hannah (Gould) Jones. Hannah was born 23 May 1812.

Ruth Brown born 10 April 1807 married Joseph Farmer and they removed to Fowler, NY.

Henry born 13 Aug. 1811 married 1833 Lucy (Lucina) Kelly.

Jane Elizabeth born 18 Sept. 1816 married Hiram Borden.

Adrian born 11 Dec. 1802; married to Margaret Harter on 11 Nov. 1822.

Nancy Brown born 9 Oct. 1820, married 1839 to Manton Wood (his second wife.) Nancy died in Lewis County, NY. Nancy was thirteen years of age when her father died. Medad Harvey was appointed special guardian for Nancy and her brother William and sister Jane, with regards to their legal inheritance. (nm, parents and bd/IGI/F#457714/cof)

Below is the very intriguing Will of Ichabod Brown dividing a portion of his farm land for his wife Rebecca. It is a mystery to this editor why Ichabod would divide the farm and house in such a way as to only permit his wife Rebecca access to the stairway to the chamber, with rights to cross the plank road to her woodlot. Ichabod also gave guardianship of some of his children to his son Adrian who lived in a little house by the farm. Adrian was not mentioned as a benefactor in Ichabod's will, which listed his sisters and brothers, although Ichabod provided for Adrian's children in his will. (Note by Editor: This will was hard to decipher because of the faded old-style handwriting.)

Herkimer, New York
Will Files #00311

In the matter of the admeasurement of Dower
in the Estate of Ichabod Brown deceased under
the order of the Surrogate of the County of

We Simeon Osborn, Henry Ellison and Chauncey Pierce appointed Commissioners to make admeasurement of said Dower as will appear by said order hereunto annexed; Being sworn faithfully, honestly and impartialy to discharge the duties and execute the trust imposed in us by said appointment Do Report

That in the performance of said duties we have met and examined the premises in said order named, and have cut off for the Dower of Rebecca Brown named in said order as Widow of said Ichabod Brown deceased, the following pieces or parcels of land with the appurtenance, That is to say

Out of the piece of land on farm first described in said order we have measured and set off for the dower of said Rebecca Brown the following described piece viz.

Beginning at the North East corner of said farm on the West bank of the West Canada Creek and running from thence along the North line to said lot South eighty nine degrees and twenty minutes West fifty Chains to a stake, thence South forty minutes East eight Chains and twenty links to a Stake, thence North eighty nine degrees and twenty minutes East, twenty three Chains and thirty links, to a Stake, thence North seventy four degrees and thirty minutes East six Chains and fifty links to a stake in front of the dwelling house, Thence North seventeen degrees West sixty seven links to the centre of the front of South door of said house, thence North thirty degrees West seventy seven links, through the Chimney and out at the north door of said house to the middle post of the wood house, thence North nineteen degrees forty minutes West thirty links to the rear of said wood house, thence North seventy two degrees East one Chain sixty one links to a Stake on the Westerly side of the main road, thence South fifty degrees and fifteen minutes East six Chains and eighty five links to Stake, thence north eighty nine degrees and forty minutes East fourteen Chains and seventy seven links to a stake on the bank of the creek. Thence up stream along said bank nine Chains and one link to the place of beginning containing forty acres and sixty seven hundredths of an acre.

We have also set off and assigned to said Rebecca Brown as for Dower the following privileges and rights of way, and also reserved out of that part assigned to her the privileges and rights of way below described; said rights being so reserved for the use of the owners and occupants of remainder of the Estate of the said Ichabod Brown deceased, viz.

The said Rebecca to have the whole of that part of the dwelling house including both Chamber and cellar which the above described line cuts off to the land assigned her. Also the right to a passage to the Chamber Stairs - the use of said stairs and from them to that part of the Chamber assigned to her; said passage not to unnecessarily obstruct the free use and occupation of same by the owners and occupants above named. The North and South doors to be and by all residing in said house; also the back cellar Stairs. The said Rebecca to have the privilege of passing from the front door to the publick highway in the usual path also the right of passage for all necessary purposes from said publick highway by the present road to that portion of the flat or interval assigned to her.

Also the said Rebecca to have a right of way by the present road up the hill west of the buildings and so through the farm on the usual or present wood road for the purpose of improving or occupying that portion of said farm assigned to her, and also for the purpose of procurring and conveying the necessary timber and fuel from the wood lot hereinafter assigned to her.

We have reserved as above mentioned out of that part of said

                                                             ( Note: Seal is here)

In the matter of the admeasurement of Dower in the Estate of Ichabod Brown deceased, under the Order of the Surrogate Court of the County of Herkimer

We Henry Ellison, Simeon Osborn &amop; Chauncey Pierce appointed Commifsioners to make admeasurement of dower, under the Order aforesaid do solemnly swear that we will faithfully, honestly, and impartially, discharge the duty, and ----the trust Be-----in by the said appointment.

Sworn this 28th day of
April 1836 before me
(Signed) Aaron Hackley
Supreme Court Commifsioner
(Signed) Henry Ellison
Simeon Osborn
Chauncey Peirce

NOTE FROM EDITOR: Above is typed exactly as spelled and translated from old handwriting with double "S" using "fs" as in that time era. The blank spaces are because I could not accurately read the handwriting.

Also, this editor does not know if the Browns mentioned are connected to either the John Brown of the Brown Tract or to the John Brown the abolitionist.

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Created 7/26/02
Copyright © 2002 Betsy Voorhees
All Rights Reserved.