After living in Pike County and sometime between 1900 and 1910, Ambrose Elizabeth Brewer (the youngest offspring and the last to be born in Chatham County, NC) and his family boarded rafts, traveled down the Big Sandy River, and settled in Cass County, Missouri. Below is a 1908 photo of that family. Our information about our Kentucky and Missouri relatives continues to grow.
Elizabeth Foster Brewer (1828-1901) was a remarkable woman and the matriarch of our family in Kentucky and Missouri. Her photo is below. What motivated the family to move west? Most likely it was to provide a better life for the family, and that often involved land. Although the family never made it to Kansas, the following excerpt, from the online site Kansapedia, may provide some insight: “The Homestead Act was one way settlers acquired land in Kansas and other parts of the west. It was signed into law by President Abraham Lincoln on May 20, 1862. Under the provisions of the Homestead Act, settlers could claim 160 acres of public land. They paid a small filing fee and then had two options for getting title to the land. If they lived on the 160 acres for five continuous years, built a residence and grew crops, they could then file for their deed for the property. The second option was to purchase the land from the government for $1.25 per acre after living on the land for six months, building a home, and starting to grow crops. The head of the household of any citizen or a person intending to become a citizen (immigrants) were eligible to claim land under the Homestead Act.”
Benny Richard "Dickie" Brewer (1931-2014). Dickie was the great grandson of Ambrose Brewer. Ambrose spent his entire life in Chatham County, NC. Dickie was a member of the third generation of Brewers who spent their entire lives in Kentucky. Dickie was instrumental in helping us connect with our cousins in that state. He is pictured here at his 82nd birthday.
James "Jimmie" Boyce Brewer (b. 1926) and his wife Joan Summers Brewer (b. 1928) celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary in 2017. Jimmie is the great grandson of Ambrose Brewer whose family migrated from North Carolina to Kentucky in the early 1860s. To our knowledge, Jimmie is the third oldest surviving member of our Brewer family.