Monday, October 1, 2007

Charles Braswell & Elizabeth Tabor of Illinois & Texas

The following article was posted to the BRASWELL discussion list by Michael L. Brasuell, PO Box 1518, Bethany, OK 73008. He gave me permission to print it in Braswell Branches where it appeared in Vol. 6 No. 1 , Winter 1997:

The BRASWELL name according to some writers is of Scottish origin. Webster’s dictionary states that the word ‘Brae’ means a hill or sloping bank, and that the word ‘Well’ means a spring or source of water. Some writers have deduced that the original BRASWELL Clan lived on the banks of a stream and thus acquired the name. This idea cannot be justified, for all early people lived on or near rivers and streams because the land was more fertile there and transportation was much easier via water than by land. Others have deduced that the name originated in Basel, Switzerland, derived from brass welders, stating that all BRASWELLs are adept with their hands many of which became mechanics, doctors, teachers, musicians, and ministers. I have no personal opinion as to the origin of the name other than the information I have found.

Through the centuries the name BRASWELL has been spelled many ways, beginning with BRAISNELLE in the Doomesday Book (1140-1159), but where it is found in Yorkshire Charters it is spelled BRAYCEWELL and BRACEWELL. (From The Family Album by Elizabeth Braswell Pearsall of Rocky Mount, North Carolina.

The early BRASWELLs settled in what is now Nash and Edgecombe Counties, North Carolina. All this land was owned by the English crown, however, North Carolina had a more liberal charter than did Virginia.

About 1688 William and Mary went to England as sovereigns to replace the deposed James II. This posed a serious problem for the Loyalists because the colonists had named their children for the English rulers (Elizabeth, James and others) in order to gain more favors from the crown. Now with William and Mary as rulers, the name William became very popular as did Mary. William BRASWELLs were found all up and down the creeks making it difficult for each one to retain his own identity. So, the BRASWELLs, like many others, had to alter the spelling of their last names in order to be distinguished from cousins, uncles, nephews, sons and fathers. So BRASWELL became BRAZIL, BRAZEL, BRASUELL, and many other spellings but the effort was made to keep the sound BRAZEL.

The Revolutionary War came to a close about 1783 and the population on the eastern shores had increased so dramatically that every farmer and planter began seeking enough land to have a plantation.

Nearly all the men were forced into military service enabling them to travel and fight for all the land south and west that had been described by the colonial charters, Virginia had its boundaries set by certain latitudes and extended to the Mississippi River. North Carolina also extended to the Mississippi. (South Carolina also tried to claim the same territory.) The soldiers who had fought in this area were paid with bounty land in Virginia, North and South Carolina, and what is now Georgia, Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee and Indiana. During their fighting they had seen this land and were eager to build homes in these places. Almost overnight there were caravans of BRASWELLs and many others headed to see all these different areas….

Very little is known about the BRASWELL family prior to 1612 except that they were said to have fled from Scotland during the rebellion against the tyrannical rule of kings. Robert BRASWELL 161[1]-1668 was born to Richard BRASWELL in London, England. Records of colonial show that Robert BRACEWELL, son of Richard BRACEWELL of London, England arrived at Hart Hall, Oxford University on February 22, 1627 and graduated with an in November 1631.

A period of almost twenty years elapsed before Robert is heard from again. During the latter part of this period, England and Scotland were passing through difficult times under Charles I, who was determined as his father, James I had been to force the Anglican form of worship on the Puritans of England and Scotland and the Presbyterians of the latter. As a result, both England and Scotland were in constant rebellion and civil war. Many prominent churchmen were forced to flee to other countries. During the Cromwellian Rebellion and subsequent rule (1640-1660), many Royalists fled England and Scotland most of them settling in the American Colonies, which were the circumstances that resulted in Robert BRASWELL coming to the new world and settling in Isle of Wight County, Virginia sometime prior to 1649. He was at this time an Episcopal clergyman....

Following is some of the information I have on Charles BRASWELL born 1819 and married Elizabeth TABOR:

Charles appeared in the Prairie Township of 1850, age 31. He and his wife, Elizabeth, born in Illinois in 1827, had four children, Susannah, Nancy, Joseph, and Robert.

Susannah was born in Missouri in 1843. The other children were born in Arkansas, therefore they must have been living in Missouri in 1843 and moved to Arkansas in 1844 which is proven due to the fact that the was in the Carroll County tax records in 1844 and again in 1846.

After 1850 there is no trace of where the family may have moved. It is possible they may have returned to Missouri, or could have been the first BRASWELL family to move to Texas. It is known that his brother, Samual, of the Braswell Springs community moved to Texas after the 1880 census.

Charles and Elizabeth’s household number in the 1850 census was no. 416, Prairie Township.

Robert and Susannah’s household number was 415 and Simon and Mary’s number was 417, all in Prairie Township, which indicates that all the BRASWELL brothers were living in the same community, as was Samual and Phoebe who were living in what was known as the Braswell Springs community.

According to the census records, Samual was the first of William’s children to settle in Carroll County, followed by Robert and Susannah, then Simon and Mary and Charles and Elizabeth. This is based on their first child born in Arkansas. However, this could be in error and that they all came over to Carroll from Benton County with their parents, William J. and Elizabeth F. BRASWELL ca. 1840.

The Simon BRASWELL mentioned is believed to have been born in Tennessee and married Mary Ann (Polly) born in Tennessee. Mary’s father was Jesse TABOR either of Macoupin, Illinois or middle Tennessee.

The following is from Braswel Branches, Vol. VI, No. 3, Summer 1997:

From Linda Gail Grider Mitchell, Sheldon, MO 64784-9005:

On page 6, Winter 1997 Branches regarding Charles BRASWELL and Elizabeth TABOR:

Charles died in 1868, I don’t know for sure where, probably Carroll Co., Arkansas.

Elizabeth TABOR BRASWELL died 9 march 1903 and is buried at Dripping Springs, Crawford Co., Arkansas.

Charles and Elizabeth had eleven children:

Susannah born 1843,
Nancy born 1845,
Joseph b. 1847,
Robert born 1849,
Samuel born 1852,
Henry born 1854
William M. born 1856.

William is my great-grandfather. He was called “Kaiser Bill” because he wore high starched collars. William M. was born 26 August 1856 died 30 March 1931, buried at Dripping Springs, Crawford Co., Arkansas.

He married on 11 August 1883 Cora Mellasie CARR (born 12 February 1860 died 29 January 1944). She also is buried at Dripping Springs. They changed the name to BRASUELL.

They had 10 kids:

Nancy Jane 1854,
Amanda 1856,
Charles Richard 1887,
Lily Annette 1888,
Sarah Elizabeth 1891,
Mary Ellen 1893,
John Henry 1895,
Evelyn Pauline 1896,
Rachel Emmaline 1898,
Susie Florence 1900.

Many of these BRASUELL’s moved to Oregon and there is to be a reunion in Oregon some time in August.

Other names associated with Kaiser Bill’s descendants are FLANAGAN, DIPBOYE, HENLEY, GRIDER, MITCHELL, COOPER, BRILEY and STRICKLIN.