Faces of the Benjamin G. Brooks Family of New Hampshire and Massachusetts

Benjamin Gove Brooks, born 1819 in Henniker NH.

Benjamin Gove Brooks, born 1819 in Henniker NH.

The faces of Benjamin Gove Brooks, his wife Frances Eliza (Downer) Brooks, and their son B. Ferdinand Brooks, look out at you from pale CDV photographs. Benjamin and his wife Frances were both born and raised in New Hampshire. Benjamin was a machinist, and so he moved to wherever he could best ply his trade. He lived in both Holyoke MA (first marriage), and later in Westford, MA (after second marriage). Benjamin and Frances had three children, one of whom was B. Ferdinand, who only lived to be 22 years old. In 1900, the widowed Frances, her daughter Maria Adelaide, and granddaughter Hazel moved to Enfield, New Hampshire, living with the Shaker community there.

Benjamin Gove Brooks descended from Henry Brooks of Concord and Woburn, Massachusetts. The Brooks genealogy is shown below.


Henry Brooks, a freeman at Concord MA 14 March 1639. He removed to Woburn MA and became a proprietor there 10 Jan 1652. Selectman 1669. He died 12 April 1683 at Woburn MA. He m1) Susanna — who d. 15 April 1681. He m2d) 12 July 1682 at Woburn MA to Annis Jaquith. The town records of Woburn refer to Goodwife Brooks as “an ancient and skillful woman, famous for attainments in medical science.”

John Brooks, son of Henry & Annis (Jaquith) Brooks, b.c1624, d 29 Sep 1692; m. 1 Nov 1649 Eunice Mousal, dau of Dea. John Mousal, a founder and much-honored citizen of Woburn MA. She d. 1 Jan 1684. They had 8 children.

John Brooks, son of John & Eunice (Mousal) Brooks, b. 1 March 1664, d. 7 Aug 1733; m. 25 Feb 1684 to Mary Richardson/or/Mary (Bruce) Cranston.

Nathan Brooks, son of John & Mary (?) Brooks, b. 1 Nov 1706, d. 6 Jan 1751; m. about 1726 to Sarah Wyman, who was b. 18 Aug 1706 and d. 21 Feb 1747.

William Brooks, son of Nathan & Sarah (Wyman) Brooks, b. 3 March 1737 Woburn MA, d 11 Oct 1804 Lyndeboro NH; m. 1st) 29 March 1759 to Abigail Kemp. She b. 17 Jan 1741, and d. 12 Jan 1787 in Hollis NH. He m2) 20 Sep 1787 in Hollis NH to Hepsibah Powers. He served as ensign in 1778 and as lieutenant 1781 in Col. Noah Lovewell’s NH. regiment, [ensign in the expedition against the British in Rhode Island in Aug 1778, and later as lieut. in Col. Noah Lovewell’s NH Regiment (1781). [DAR #14298, 18575, 47908] He became a proprietor of land in Hollis NH.
Children of William & Alice (Kemp) Brooks:
1. +William Brooks, b. 1 May 1760 Hollis NH.
2. Abigail Brooks, b 19 July 1762 Hollis NH, d. 22 Feb 1812 Westford, Chittenden Co. VT
3. Elizabeth “Betsey” Brooks, b. 23 July 1764 Hollis NH, d. 1810 in Essex, Essex Co.. NY; m. Robert Parker. Had issue
4. Sarah Brooks, b. 6 July 1766 Hollis NH; d. 3 May 1854 Chelmsford MA
5. Isaac Brooks, b. 28 Oct 1768 Hollis NH, d. 11 June 1785 Hollis NH
6. Margaret Brooks, b. 15 Feb 1771 Hollis NH; d. 1830
7. Samuel Brooks, b. 3 March 1774 Hollis NH, d. 1850 NY
8. Martha Brooks, b. 23 Aug 1776 Hollis NH, d. 1830
9. Capt. Leonard Brooks, b. 29 Jan 1779 Hollis NH, d. 15 April 1860 Milford NH
10. John Brooks, b. 11 Nov 1781 Hollis NH, d. 28 Feb 1865
11. Susanah Brooks, b. 12 Feb 1783 Hollis NH

Major William Brooks, Jr. son of William & Alice (Kemp) Brooks, b 1 May 1760 Hollis NH, d 5 Sep 1843 Greenfield NH; m1st) 24 April 1782 to Deborah Parker, dau of Benjamin Parker of Groton MA. She b. 26 Aug 1762 Groton MA, d 31 July 1824, aged 62 yrs. He m2d) 31 Jan 1828 in Hancock NH to Hepsibah, daughter of William and Sarah (Merriam) Draper. She was b. in Francestown NH. She m2d) James Boutwell of Antrim and died in that town, but was buried in Hancock NH beside her first husband. He was a soldier in the Revolutionary War and his name should have been on the list [on page 236]. Major Brooks came to Hancock as early as 1786 and settled and built the old house at the place marked “M.N. Spalding.” In 1810 he purchased the Lieut. John Cummings farm, marked “J. Barney.” A few years before his death he removed to Greenfield NH. He was a blacksmith besides being a farmer, and held in town many important positions; was
representative to NH’s General Court ten years.[Some info from History of Hancock NH]
Children of William & Deborah (Parker) Brooks:
1. Deborah Brooks, b. 1785 Hollis NH, d. 3 Dec 1854; m. Warren Wood
2. William Brooks, b. 1786 Hollis NH; m. Hannah Loomis. One child, William removed to California
3. Ursula Brooks, b. 1787; m. John Bowers
4. Isaac Brooks, b. 1788, m. Mary Davis and settled in Henniker NH
5. Charles H. Brooks, b. 7 April 1789 NH, d. Weston MA 8 Nov 1846; m. 2 Nov 1813 Lois Lakin, dau of Simeon & Lois (Harwell) Lakin. She d. 27 July 1834; settled in Hancock, removed to Unadilla NY about 1817. Children.
6. Diadama Brooks, b. 24 Nov 1790 Hollis NH; m. 29 Dec 1814 John Brooks 3d, son of John & Elizabeth (Woods) Brooks.
7. Abagail Brooks, b. 1791; m. Peter Davis
9. Gardner Towne Brooks, b. 18 May 1794 in Hancock NH
10. Seth Brooks, b. 1795 NH, d. Jan 1869 NH; m. Hannah Burtt. She b. 11 Dec 1796, d. 2 Jan 1869. They resided Flint, Indiana. One child Delos Brooks.
11. Relief Brooks, m. 15 Dec 1824 Ira M. Whitcomb
12. Mary Ann Brooks, b. Jue 1804 Hancock NH, d. 18 March 1868 Henniker NH; m. James Flanders of Hopkinton. Children: John, George, Samuel, William, Abigail.
13. Thomas Jefferson Brooks, b. 7 Aug 1801, d. 12 Aug 1843 Manchester NH; m. abt 1822 to Abigail Tenney of Society Land. She b 8 Aug 1801, d. 12 March 1882. Children: Jefferson, James, Charles Isaac, Addison, Abigail, George.
14. James Hosley Brooks, b. 7 Jan 1805 Hancock NH, d. 30 Dec 1885 in Greenfield NH. Blacksmith; m. Sabrina Ferson, dau of James and Margaret Ferson of Francestown. He resided in Greenfield NH. Child, Sabrina A who m. William Atherton a farmer of Greenfield NH.
15. Charlotte Brooks, m. Nathan Holt
Children of William & Hepsibah (Draper) Brooks
16. Susan Jane Jackson Brooks, b. 17 Jan 1829, d. and buried in Hancock 13 Jan 1856.
17. John Leonard Brooks, b. 9 Jan 1832, d. Manchester NH. Corporal during Civil War in Co. G, 16th Regiment NH Vols. Lived in Antrim, then worked for his brother Benjamin P. as a meat cutter.
18. Benjamin Pierce Brooks, b. 9 Jan 1835; m. 8 Sep 1858 to Arvilla C. George, dau of Moses E. & Betsey (Harriman) George of Manchester, NH.

Gardner Towne Brooks, son of William & Deborah (Parker) Brooks, b 18 May 1794 in Hancock or Deering NH, d. 3 June 1841 Fitchburg MA, buried Valley Cemetery, Manchester NH; m. abt 1808 to Jemima “Mina” Ann Gove, daughter of Abraham & Mary (Nudd) Gove. She b 29 Sep 1794 in Deering NH, d 31 Oct 1879 in Manchester NH, aged 85. Occupation jeweler. Settled at Deering NH but moved to Fitchburg MA.
Children of Gardner T. & Jemima (Gove) Brooks:
1. Gardner Weare Brooks, b. 30 Dec 1814 Deering, Hillsborough Co. NH, d. 24 Jan 1889 Manchester NH; m1) 16 May 18– at Temple NH to Jane Ferguson. She was b. 29 Aug 1811, d. 18 Oct 1841; He m2) 1 Dec 1842 to Eliza Ann Kennard and lived in Manchester NH. 8 children.
2. Minia Ann Brooks, b 12 March 1817; m. Charles F. Aiken of Milford NH, had 10 children.
3. +Benjamin Gove Brooks. b 1819 Henniker NH
4. Edward Chase Brooks, b. 16 Sep 1821, d. 1880 Oregon; m. Hannah Porter [or Parker] of New Ipswich NH. 3 children.
5. Charlotte Brooks, b. 14 Nov 1823 NH, d. Manchester NH; m. Stanford Hovey. He b. 24 Feb 1823 in Weare NH. jeweler. 2 children: A. Coe Hovey, Luetta Hovey.
6. Lewis Simonds Brooks, b. 4 Feb 1826; m1) Mary Ann Reed and went west. He had 3 other wives.
7. Deborah Woods Brooks, b. 30 March 1828 NH, d. Independence Iowa; she m. William Winkley. 2 children, Frank & William W.
8. Eliza Abigail Brooks, b. 22 Aug 1830, d. 9 March 1907 Manchester NH; m. John P. Brock. He b. 1822 NH, d. 1900 Manchester NH.
9. Square/Squire/Squiers Gage Brooks, b 4 April 1833 Merrimack NH, d. 26 Dec 1907 in Boston MA; m. 30 Dec 1855 Roxbury MA to Sarah Lizzie Griggs/Gregg, dau of George S. & Sarah L. (?) Griggs/Gregg. Buried Forest Hills Cemetery. Two children: Lottie Hovey and Herbert Griggs.Watchmaker and Optician, place of business 120 Dudley Street Boston, helped provide genealogy for town of Hanock’s history. His children: Annie Azella, Carrie Louise, Lizzie Gertrude, Lottie Hovey, Annie Clytie, Herbert Griggs.
10. Sarah B. Brooks, b. 21 May 1835, d 1911 Georgia; m. Thomas R. V. Bradley.

Frances Eliza (Dower) Brooks, wife of Benjamin G. Brooks

Frances Eliza (Downer) Brooks, wife of Benjamin G. Brooks

Benjamin Gove Brooks, son of Gardner T. & Jemima (Gove) Brooks, b 10 April 1819 Henniker NH d 12 Dec 1880. He m1st) Clara Blaisdell, dau of Stephen Blaisdell. She was b. 1819 Windham NH and d. 20 Sep 1856 in Holyoke MA. She was buried in So. Hadley Falls MA. He m2d) 16 Aug 1860 in Bradford, Essex Co. MA to Frances Eliza Downer, daughter of Martin & Elizabeth/Betsy (Hoyt/Hoit) Downer/Downing/Dewey. She b. 1 March 1836 Lebanon NH, d. 20 Feb 1916 in Manchester NH. At the time of her death living 506 Manchester Street, placed in the City Tomb. At the time of his marriage, his occupation was machinist. He enlisted in the 8th Regiment MA Infantry militia, 100 days in 1864, Company G. Filed 9 July 1890 for military pension, an invalid. [Fold3 has some revolutionary war pension info for Martin Downer aka Martin Dewey in 1780]. In 1900 the widowed Frances E. (Downer) Brooks, her daughter Maria and granddaughter Hazel I were living with and listed as members of the Enfield NH “Shakers”.
1850 US Census > MA > Hampden > Holyoke
Samuel G. Snow millwright
Lucy F. Snow
Benjamin G. Brooks 23 M millwright
Clara C. Brooks 32 F
Monroe Palmer 29 M Millwright
Harvey Boardman 25 M carpenter
John C. Newell 27 M carpenter
J.E. Newell 22 F
1855 US Census > MA > Hampden > Holyoke
Benjamin G Brooks M 36 NH
Clara Brooks F 36 NH
1880 US Census > MA > Middlesex > Westford
Benjamin G. Brooks Self M 61 NH NH NH farmer
Frances E. Brooks F 44 NH NH VT
B. Ferdinand Brooks son M 19 NH
M. Adelaide Brooks daughter F 11 NH
Jessie F. Brooks dau F 5 Massachusetts NH NH
Martin A. Wilkins Other M 25 MA

Vintage Postcard, Shaker Stone Woodworking Shop, 1849, Enfield, New Hampshire

Vintage Postcard, Shaker Stone Woodworking Shop, 1849, Enfield, New Hampshire

1900 US Census > NH > Grafton > Enfield [Society of Shakers]
Celia Mellen Head F 41 VT
Eva A. Banks Member F 10 MA
Carl A. Banks Member M 8
Frances E. Brooks Member F 64 NH March 1836
Hazel I Brooks Member F 2 MA Jan 1898
Maria Brooks Member F 31 NH Feb 1869
Edna R. Butler Member F 14 MA
Louise W. Carpenter Member 15 RI
Melissa Chase Member F 72 Canada-English
1910 US Census > VT > Orange > Tunbridge
Parker, Benjamin
Parker, Eva E. wife
Parker, B. Bernard son
Parker, Harriet M. daughter in law
Brooks, M. Adelaide servant D/S 1 ch 1 living NH NH NH
Brooks, Hazel I. Boarder F W 12 single NH NH NH

B. Ferdinant Brooks, son of Benjamin G. & Frances E. (Downer) Brooks, died at the age of 22.

B. Ferdinand Brooks, son of Benjamin G. & Frances E. (Downer) Brooks, died at the age of 23.

Children of Benjamin G. & Frances Eliza (Downer) Brooks:
1. *B. Ferdinand Brooks, b. 23 May 1861 Manchester NH; d. 23 March 1883
2. +Maria Adelaide Brooks, b. 15 Feb 1869 Manchester NH, d. 8 June 1918 Boston MA at Hart Hospital, following double pneumonia operation on 6 June as a result of her leukemia; her occupation nurse; single.
3. Jessie Frances Brooks, b. 25 January 1875 Westford MA; m. 8 Jan 1896 in Manchester NH to Kimball W. Bates, son of George L. & Helen A. (?) Bates. He was b. July 1868 in Windsor VT. In 1900 living in Manchester NH, child, Lois Helen, b Aug 1896 NH who m. Arthur W. Osberg, an architect [Whitcher Architectural Offices, Manchester NH]. Kimball was a distributing clerk for the post office.

Hazel Isadore Brooks, daughter of M. Adelaide Brooks, b 29 January 1898 [possibly Boston MA] d. 29 Aug 1980 in Berlin, Washington Co. VT. She m. 6 Feb 1918 in Tunbridge, VT to Charles Ernest Welch, son of Frederick & Frances (Snashall) Welch. He was b. 24 Nov 1892 in Leyton, Essex, England and d. 21 July 1960 in Randolph, Orange Co VT. She resided in Tunbridge VT, and is buried in the Village Cemetery there.  The photographs shown here belonged to someone in this family, as they mention Hazel Welch on the back.
1940 US Census > VT > Orange > Tunbridge
Charles E. Welch Head M 47 England
Hazel I. Welch wife F 42 MA
James F. Welch son M 18 VT
Wesley C. Welch son M 14 VT
Douglas W. Welch son M 12 VT
Roger O. Welch son M 8 VT
Children of Charles E. & Hazel I. (Brooks) Welch:
1. Irene Elsie Welch, b. 11 Nov 1919 Tunbridge VT, d. 4 Feb 1927 in Randolph VT
2. James Frederick Welch, b. 26 Dec 1921 Tunbridge VT, d. 17 July 1980 Hartford, Windsor Co. VT. He m. Lucille Evelyn Blake, dau of Edward A. & Ina Lenora (Rogers) Blake. He b. 27 July 1919 Tunbridge VT, d. 30 Jan 2009 Randolph VT. Had issue.
3. Wesley Charles Welch, b. 8 Sep 1925 in Tunbridge VT, d. 1 Sep 1987 Randolph VT; m. Elaine Ruth Coombs. She b. 1929 and d. 2009.
3. Douglas William Welch, b. 20 August 1927 in Tunbridge VT; d. 17 October 1995 in South Royalton, Windsor VT. He married twice.
4. Roger Owen Welch, b 27 Nov 1931 Tunbridge, Orange Co., VT; m. Hazel –. Owned a dairy farm in Tunbridge VT.

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One Response to Faces of the Benjamin G. Brooks Family of New Hampshire and Massachusetts

  1. Great Post Loved the photos I know the Shaker community in NH helped Newburyport MA in early 1800’s after the great fire they showed up with wagons full of supplies and furniture. This would also be nice to share on the DAR and SAR page for records on soldiers

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