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THE FABULOUS PEARSALLS

by HERBERT F. SEVERSMITH and ARTHUR S. WARDWELL

I. Amy (? Pearsall) Brush

In 1935 Conklin Mann published an article entitled "Thomas and Richard Brush of Huntington Long Island" in THE NEW YORK GENEALOGICAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD for 1935, vol. 66, beginning p. 201. Mr. Mann's compliation was exceptionally thorough; it not only provided many valuable corrections of alleged Brush connections which had been previously accepted as reliable, but it also organized much of the information on the connections of Jonas Bruch, son of Richard and Deborah Brush. The wife of Jonas Brush was named Amy, and Mr. Mann goes on to say that (p. 364)

His wife evidently was Amy Pearsall of the Hempstead Oyster Bay family. Two of their children were baptised Pierson. The survivor signed himself both Pierson and Pearsall in the Revolution, but when he made his will in 1829 called himself Pearsall. Moreover the Rev. Mr. Prime in entering baptisms for the Pearsall vamily frequently spelled the name Pierson. However Henry Pierson and his wife Abigail Ludlum of Southampton had a daughter Amy, born 11 Oct. 1716, who may have married Jonas Brush.*

We have made a reasonably exhaustive study of the Pierson, Person and Pearsall families in an endeavor to ascertain the ancestry of the wife of Jonas Brush. It does not seem possible that she was descended of either Henry or Abraham Pierson and it is equally certain that she was not descended of the Persen or Person family of Kingston and Albany, New York. This last statement is made notwithstanding the fact that Amy (?Pearsall) Brush was undoubtedly baptised as Ami Persen in the Dutch Church at Jamaica, New York, 12 October 1714, daughter _____________ *Two corrections to Mr. Mann's article should be noted: Jonathan Pratt, not Platt deeded land to Jonas Brush, 30 March, 1748, and Deborah Brush, daughter of Jonas and Amy Brush married in St. George's Episcopal Church at Hempstead, New York, 15 April 1764 (not 1769) to Richard Weeks of Oyster Bay. Deborah (Brush) Weeks was a widow in 1799 and recorded in the Census as of Oyster Bay; later she was resident of West Islip. New York, where she lived with her son Jonas Weeks. She died of apoplexy 2 August 1810 and was buried probably at West Islip. The ancestry of her husband Richard Weeks remians undetermined.

THE FABULOUS PEARSALLS

THE FABULOUS PEARSALL
...............................p. 79

of Jan Persen and his wife Margaret. The sponsors at the baptism were Hendrick and Maria Doesenburgh; it may be that the latter were closely related to the child. This baptism is transcribed in Vol. II, p. 26 of the typescript DUTCH CHURCH RECORDS OF JAMAICA, NEW YORK, as edited by Mrs. Josephine C. Frost.

No other conclusive reference to this Jan Persen is found. As Amy Brush insisted on giving the name of Pierson (as recorded) or Pearsall to two of her sons when they were baptised (one of whom died in infancy), we agree with Mr. Mann's suggestion that her maiden name was actually Pearsall. This is supported by two suggestive circumstances: (1) John Pearsall of Hempstead, son of Daniel and Emma (or Amy) (Basset) Pearsall, lived near Maria or Mary Doesenburgh; (2) in the Hempstead New York Census of 1698 the wife of the above mentioned Daniel Pearsall is called Ame and a daughter is given the same name.* As these would be the mother and sister respectively of John Pearsall, it would be most probable for the latter to name a daughter after these relatives. The name Amy (or a phonetically similar name) is not found elsewhere in any of the families which have been examined, and from which Jan Persen possibly could have been descended.

In the printed RECORDS OF THE TOWNS OF NORTH AND SOUTH HEMPSTEAD, NEW YORK edited by Benjamin D. Hicks, vol. II. at p. 495 appears a deed wherein Elias Dorlon and his wife Miriam conveyed 8 June, 1716 to John Pearsall for -70:

......one of ye sd Lots of Land being bounded as followeth east & north by Joseph Smiths Land, west by Land of Richard Smith decesed part of ye wa & part of ye way by ye towns Commons or where the fence now standeth south by ye high way yt leads from mary Dosenborows to ye Meeting house.........

This is undoubtedly refers to the John Pearsall whose earmark was entered on p. 167 of the same volume, 14 June, 1711; the latter is to be identified as the sone of Daniel and Emma (Basset) Pearsall. John Pearsall made his will 8 August, 1740; it was proved 28 August, 1741 and recorded in Liber 13 of Wills, New York City, p. 450. Therein his wife Martha is mentioned and four sons John, Daniel, James and Samuel; the testator made Daniel Searing, Samuel Pearsall and Jacob Smith executors. The fact that no daughters were named doest not indicate necessarily that there were none, and the wife Martha cited may have been a second. As the surname Pearsall was used on Long Island almost exclusively by members of this family: as this John Pearsall is the only one we have been able to identify with the father of the child baptised in the Dutch Church in Jamaica: ___________________

*THE NEW YORK GENALOGICAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD Vol. 45 (1914), pp. 58, 59.

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