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Sunday, October 26, 2014

52 Ancestors #45: Sussanah Brigham Hudson

     Sussanah Brigham was born on 12 Apr 1755 in Marlborough, Massachusetts, the daughter of Dr. Samuel Brigham and Anna Gott. I have already written about her mother's father, Dr. Benjamin Gott and her mother's grandfather, Rev. Robert Breck so we know she was descended from important families on her mother's side. On her father's side, the Brighams were one of the most key families in Marlborough, Mass. In fact, in his History of Marlborough, Charles Hudson (also one of her descendants) devotes an entire chapter  to "The Brighams of Marlborough".  Her great great grandfather, Thomas Brigham, came to Massachusetts from Yorkshire, England in 1635 and settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts. After his death the family moved to Marlborough. Her father, Dr. Samuel Brigham, was a well known doctor and active in the town government. In 1756 he went to the West Indies as an Army Surgeon and contracted yellow fever and died. Sussanah would've been only about a year old.  Her younger brother, Samuel, was born after his father's death. Her mother re-married Capt. Stephen Maynard in 1757.

     When she was only 15, on 4 Oct 1770, Sussanah married Elisha Hudson.  Their first son, William was born five months later. (As a note, in her pension application she says they were married in September 1769 but the official town record says 4 Oct 1770.) Elisha had been a soldier with his father in the French and Indian Wars at ages 12, 14 and 16, the last in 1760, so I think he would have been a rather dashing and exciting young man. She was from a family of famous scholars (Rev. Breck and Dr. Gott) and he was a man of action. Sussanah and Elisha had a total of eight children, six boys and two girls. They moved around quite a bit with children born in Marlborough, Bolton, Worcester, Hudson, Northborough and Halifax, Vermont. Elisha was also recorded as being in Wilton, New Hampshire in 1776.

     Elisha fought in the Revolutionary War.  According to the pension application that she made, he fought in the Battles of Lexington and Concord and the Battle of Bunker's Hill. Elisha's father and eight brothers also fought in the War.  The Brigham family was also very active in the Revolutionary War. Her brother, Samuel, and eighteen of her cousins or other Brigham relatives also fought. Sixteen of them fought at Lexington and Concord. So we can assume that she herself was devoted to the American cause.

     In 1790, Elisha Hudson and family are to be found in Northborough, Massachusetts.  In 1800 they are in Halifax, Vermont. At some point after that they moved to Newport , Quebec, Canada.  This is near Eaton south of the St. Lawrence River.  Elisha died on 17 April 1815, presumably in Newport. He and Susannah's daughter, Eliza, married at Eaton in 1818. Susannah is noted in the Canadian Genealogy index as living in Markham, York, Ontario, Canada in 1819, while Eliza mentions living in Port Hope, Ontario at some point as well.  Her son, Charles is in the town of Phelps, Ontario, New York in the 1820 Census and in Arcadia, Wayne, New York in 1830-1850. Sussanah appears in the 1840 Census in Arcadia. Exactly when she came back to New York I do not know but on 4 Jul 1836 she petitioned for a pension based on Elisha's war service while residing in Arcadia. The petition was denied due to the inability of the officials to find the proper records.  But her pension request does give us some of the data on Elisha's war record.  Her daughter, Eliza and son, Charles continued to try to secure the pension after her death in May 1840.

     We know nothing of her personality, just the above facts. Her husband, brother and cousins fought in the Revolutionary War, then she ended up in Canada where her son, Robert Brick, fought for Canada (and the British!) in the War of 1812! Then back to the U.S. in the end. She followed her husband and then she followed her son.  She has many descendants in both Canada and the U.S.A. and I think she is a woman to be proud of!

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