Researching the James and Mary Brookshaw Family, part 1

James and Mary Brookshaw familyA few months ago, I had to opportunity to look at The Brookshire Family by Glenna Brookshire Beck.  I got a lot of great information which I’m now validating.  My current focus is to look online for original records that are cited in The Brookshire Family or for other original records that support the information included.

The book is organized in descending order, meaning that it starts with the oldest known generation and moves forward in time.  So, I’m starting with due diligence on the immigrant couple and their children.

Summary of Known Information (as of 20 Oct 2012)

James Brookshaw was born in England about 1650.1  He and his wife, Mary Elizabeth, immigrated to Maryland in 1674, arriving on the Friendship.  He died before 6 May 1727 in Somerset County, Maryland, which was the date of an inventory taken of his estate.  James and Mary had four known children: Esther, Margaret, Mary, and James, all born in Somerset County, Maryland.2

  • Esther was born 12 Apr 1680.
  • Margaret was born 10 Jul 1682.
  • Mary was born 28 Dec 1687.
  • James was born 1 Apr 1690.3

Research Objective

Due diligence for information on James Brookshaw (c. 1650-c. 1727) family

Limitations

  • time – one day allotted for this block of research
  • working at home today, so limited to online records

Collections Used

Itemized Findings

James Brookshaw (c. 1650-c. 1727)

“Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s”
  • James Brokshaw, 1675, Maryland4
  • James Brookeshaw and wife, 1674, Maryland5
My comments:
  • The two entries above could be the same James, as the index cites two different sources for the information. This needs to be resolved however.
  • I searched the database for Brokshaw, Brookshaw, Brookshire, Brookeshire, Brookeshaw, arriving in Maryland from 1669-1679 to ensure this was the only James and Mary. The only other Brookshire was an Isaac Brookshaw, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1683.

Mary Elizabeth, wife of James Brookshaw (c. 1660-?)

“Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s”
  • Mary Brokshaw, 1675, Maryland6
“Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” entry for Esther
  • Mary Brookeshann7
My comments:
  • Brookeshann is likely an indexing error; w would be easy to mistake for nn in old handwriting.
“Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” entry for Esther
  • Eliz. Brookshaw8
My comments:
  • Further research needed to prove that Mary and Eliz. are the same person.

Esther Brookshaw (1680-?)

“Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,”
  • Esther Brookeshann
  • birth date: 12 Apr 1860
  • birth place: Somerset, Somerset, Maryland
  • father’s name: James Brookeshann
  • mother’s name: Mary9

Mary Brookshaw (1687-?)

“Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,”
  • Mary Brookshaw
  • birth date 28 Dec 1687
  • birth place: Somerset, Somerset, Maryland
  • father’s name James Brookshaw
  • Mother’s name Eliz.10

 Next Steps

  • Ordered the FHL microfilm cited in the FamilySearch database. Look for original records when film arrives.
  • Move on to validating daughter Margaret in online records.
  • Search Maryland Online Archives for information on this family.
  • Look for a copy of Gibb, Carson. A Supplement to The Early Settlers of Maryland by Carson Gibb (passenger list source).
  • Look for a copy of Skordas, Gust, editor. The Early Settlers of Maryland: an Index to Names of Immigrants, Compiled from Records of Land Patents, 1633-1680, in the Hall of Records (passenger list source).


  1. Brookshire Surname, message board (http://boards.ancestry.com/surnames.brookshire/mb.ashx), margaretbrewer, “MY APOLOGIES! For all the errors in #100,” 11 Oct 2000 and Glenna Brookshire Beck, The Brookshire Family, Sheridan Charles Randolph (Chillicothe, Missouri: Elizabeth Prather Ellsberry, n.d.), p. 8.
  2. Beck, The Brookshire Family, p. 8.
  3. Beck, The Brookshire Family, p. 8, citing an old Court Book of Register of Births, Marriages, and Burials of Old Somerset County, Maryland, 1650-1719/20, p. 16.
  4. “Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 20 October 2012), entry for James Brokshaw; citing Gibb, Carson. A Supplement to The Early Settlers of Maryland. Annapolis, MD: Maryland State Archives, 1997, p. 33.
  5. “Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 21 October 2012), entry for James Brookeshaw; citing Skordas, Gust, editor. The Early Settlers of Maryland: an Index to Names of Immigrants, Compiled from Records of Land Patents, 1633-1680, in the Hall of Records. Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1968. 525p. Repr. 1986, p. 63.
  6. “Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s,” database, Ancestry.com, entry for Mary Brokshaw; ; citing Gibb, Carson. A Supplement to The Early Settlers of Maryland. Annapolis, MD: Maryland State Archives, 1997, p. 33.
  7. “Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” database, FamilySearch (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 20 October 2012), entry for Esther Brookeshann; citing FHL microfilm 14363, Maryland Circuit Court records, Liber DB no. IKL 1710-1734 Liber AC no. 25 1713-1716 1713-1722 Liber EF no. 13 1716-1718, p. 17.
  8. “Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” database, FamilySearch, entry for Mary Brookeshann.
  9. “Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” database, FamilySearch, entry for Esther Brookeshann.
  10. “Maryland, Births and Christenings, 1650-1995,” database, FamilySearch, entry for Mary Brookshaw.

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Comments

  1. says

    Twitter: michaelhait
    You can also find the deed books for Somerset County online–these are the books referenced by Familysearch containing the birth records. Unfortunately the references you have in your citations are not correct. There is no such thing as a “Maryland Circuit Court,” and the county circuit courts were not created until 1851. During the seventeenth, you would be dealing with Somerset County Court.

    You will find the births in deed book IKL, on the following pages:
    page 17 – Esther Brookshaw (1680)
    page 20 – Mary Brookshaw (1687), Margaret Brookshaw (1682), and James Brookshaw (1690)

    There is more that I could tell you, but I will just recommend that you take a look at the original entries.

    Free access to Maryland deed books is available at http://www.mdlandrec.net. You will need to register for a password, which should be emailed immediately. Once you login you can look at any of the deed books or deed indexes. Type in the references I gave you (Book IKL, page 17 and page 20) to see the records.

    Good luck with your research!

    • Tonia Kendrick says

      Thanks, Michael! I ordered the film that the FS index entry was pointing to. Maybe I can cancel the order, since these books are online. That is great information to have. I’ve done very little Maryland research, so I’m not familiar yet with everything that is available online.

      Regarding the citation, yeah, I didn’t think that was quite right. I got the Circuit Court part from something I saw in the FS catalog. I really just used that citation as a placeholder until I can get the original records. I should have looked up the history of the court system first, to figure it out.

  2. says

    Thank you, Tonia, for modeling what one day of research looks like. This is really instructive to me as an amateur (aspiring to more). I can clearly see what you’ve done using basically two databases and the book by Glenna Beck.

    Several points amaze me: (1) Michael Hait immediately chimes in with a URL for Gibb and several other super tips. Wow! (2) Your footnotes are impeccable (I’m a retired college prof). and (3) You “allotted” a chunk of time for this research? People do that? Allot? I’m way impressed. I’m still scrambling to get blogs read, webinars watched, and my own research advanced bit by bit. Thanks for this blog that teaches me more about the genealogical community.
    Mariann Regan´s last blog post ..Found. Now, Contact?

    • Tonia Kendrick says

      Hi Mariann,

      Isn’t Michael awesome? I’ve already found the original records, based on the pointers he gave me.

      I’m trying to be more methodical in my research and not go off chasing whatever is new and shiny. I have so many projects I’m working on and my time is very limited (I have a non-genealogy job). I find that if I don’t say “I have X hours to work on this project,” that a day will go by with not much really accomplished. I also find that if I don’t write down the process I followed, the results, and the next steps, that I can’t pick up the project at a later date and run with it.

      Good luck in your own research!

      Tonia

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