Nelson Cleveland Brooks born 3 August 1848

Nelson Brooks was born 3 August 1848 in Shipton, Sherbrooke County, Quebec.  He was the son of Harvey Brooks and Phinette (Fynette) Doying.  The family was counted in the 1851 census there.  Harvey’s farm was 100 acres, with 18 acres cultivated, and 18 acres of pasture, with 82 acres of wood or wild land.  (That doesn’t add up to 100 acres, but that is the information recorded on the 1851 Quebec agricultural schedule.)  The family was Methodist, and included Harvey Brooks, 47, Philipa (?) 47, Sally 20, John 17, Leander 15, Julianna 14, Albert 12, Ellen 8, Nelson 5, Anne 3, all born in Canada. 

The family was in the same place in 1861, living in a one family, one story log home.  Family members were Harvey 59, Finetta 52, Juliana 23, Halbert 19, Helen 17, Nelson 15, Anne 11, baby 1. 

By 1870, Nelson had moved to the US.  He was living with the Whiton family in Warren NH.  John Whiton was a peg manufacturer, and Nelson worked in the peg mill.  I believe that these pegs were used in shoe manufacturing.  About the diameter of a wooden match, these pegs were used to fasten the shoe uppers to the soles.  They were cheaper to use than stitching.  Shoes with the soles sewn on lasted longer, but cost more. 

In 1880, Nelson was living in a boarding house in Bartlett NH, and working in the peg mill there.  Also living and working there was Mary Cota.   Perhaps Mary introduced Nelson to her sister Elizabeth.  Nelson and Elizabeth Cota were married about 1880, after the census. After working in the peg mill, Nelson worked in a barrel factory. 

Nelson and Elizabeth had four children.  Harvey Fred Brooks was born 20 July 1883, but died as a child, some time before 1900.  Inez was born 5 August 1886, married George Ernest Hamilton, had five children, and died 16 may 1965 in Brevard County, Florida.  Althea was born 1 September 1890, married John Farnham, and apparently had no children.  She died in 1983 in Lawrence MA.  Nelson and Lizzie and the two girls lived in a house they bought, and the family was doing well for the times.  After a gap of almost ten years, Helen was born in 1899.  She married George Laber, and died in 1927.

The 1900 census lists the family in Bartlett.  Nelson was a day laborer, and the two older girls were in school.  This census also says that they were married 20 years, which confirms the 1880 marriage date, and confirms four children born, 3 living.

Nelson died 18 April 1901 in Bartlett.  His occupation was listed as cooper (barrel maker) and cause of death was chronic Bright’s disease (kidney disease).   He was buried at Bartlett Cemetery. 

 

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