Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Maternal Great Grandparent's Story

My grandmother Mercy's first recorded ancestor (that I'm aware of) was a Judge Jonathan Brown, born May 17, 1746, and buried in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania in 1827. This was my great great great grandfather. His son Daniel Brown married Mercy Hallock - these were my great great grandparents. They were farmers and lived on a beautiful large farm on the Delaware River, near the Delaware Water Gap. Mercy Hallock was a Quaker, and bore seven children. My grandmother described her thus: "I can remember my grandmother Mercy, who wore the plain grey costume and Shaker bonnet."

Finally we get to John Hallock Brown, one of their sons, born in 1843 in Pennsylvania, who married Sophia Price - these were my great grandparents. As a young man, John H. Brown graduated from Princeton University in 1867, and then from Union Theological Seminary in 1869. While he was studying at Union, he met Sophie Price who was studying music. Both of them played the organ and piano, and were drawn together by their love of music. In later years, when they had children, they put together an orchestra in their home and had performances. John became a minister and preached in several small churches in New York and Pennsylvania, and the family moved often.

Sophie was born in 1843 in New York City, and was 20 when the Civil War started. Her family sheltered and aided slaves making their way north on the underground railway. Her father (my great great grandfather) was Cyrus Price, who had a business painting ships in New York harbor. He amassed a considerable fortune and fathered five children, one of whom was Sophie. Here is a photo of John and Sophie Brown when they were much older. Don't they look happy? And check out that woodpile behind them (I think that's what it is!).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

John Hallock Brown and Sophia Price Brown were my great great grandparents and their daughter Adeline Brown Akerman (m. to Dr. Alfred Akerman) was my great grandmother - I have very little information about that side of the family and would love to learn more. This branch of the family is very Akerman-centric - most likely because of Amos Tappan Akerman (from Portsmouth, NH - attended Exeter Academy and Dartmouth) who was the U.S. Attorney General in President Grant's administration. I can be reached at