Henry and Catherine Maria Wright Brown

Clyde Fechser
Faye Boyden
Cleveland Brown
Willmirth Brown

Clyde Fechser
Faye Boyden
Cleveland Brown
Wilmirth Brown


Henry Brown was christened July 30, 1815 in Stratford-on-Avon, England. His father, William Brown, was a flax-dresser. Henry was the sixth child. His mother, Julianna Wright, died when Henry was fifteen.

Henry married his cousin, Catherine Maria Wright, on July 2, 1838 in the Parish Church of Edgebaston. The couple set up house in Edgebaston, about 1 1/2 miles southwest of Birmingham. Henry had a beautiful voice and sang in the church choir.

The Life Sketch of Julia Dyer strong, Henry's niece, tells this story: When Julia was 12 her Uncle Henry visited. Shortly, he received a call to administer to a man who was ill. He told Julia that a Mr. Denham would be coming by to have Henry baptize him. Henry felt Mr. Denham was wavering in his commitment to be baptized and Julia was to detain Mr. Denham until Henry returned. When Mr. Denham came to the house, Julia did everything in her power to engage him in conversation until Uncle Henry returned. Brother Denham was determined to leave the house, so Julia locked the door and hid the key. Uncle Henry finally returned and Mr. Denham was baptized.

Henry was a bricklayer. The 1851 Census indicates he employeed three other men to assist him in bricklaying. Also this census indicates that Henry's father, William Brown age 85, was living with him.

On January 22, 1852, Henry, Catherine and their six children boarded the "Ellen Maria" captained by A. Whitmore. The ship set sail on February 6, 1852. It was to land in the United States in the city of New Orleans. Passing for this journey was 5 pounds for an adult and 4 pounds for children. Infants were free. The "Ellen Maria" landed at New Orleans on April 7, 1852.

After arrival, Henry, Catherine and family joined a wagon train headed west, headed by A.O. Smoot. The wagon train stopped to rest on the south bank of the Platte River, 45 miles above Fort Kearny. Here cholera visited and took the lives of Henry, Catherine, Henry, the oldest son, James, the third son, and the baby girl Julia.

Diane's Den