Tuesday, March 14, 2017

"Found Lifeless" in a Brook

Bethuel Vincent was only 29 years old when he was found lifeless in a brook. His obituary reads:

Died – In Turbut township, on the 11th inst., Bethuel Vincent, junior, aged about 30 years. The deceased had gone to the fields to collect raspberries and while crossing a small brook was taken with convulsive fits, to which he was daily subject, fell into the water, where he was, shortly after, found lifeless. ["The States Advocate, Thursday, 17 July 1828. Posted on Bethuel Vincent's Find A Grave memorial page in Warrior Run Church Cemetery, Delaware Run, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania]

Find A Grave memorial page in Warrior Run Church Cemetery, Delaware Run,
Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, photo by Earl Munday

Daniel Vincent's will, who was Bethuel's father and my 5th great grandfather, told more of Bethuel's story. [The "junior" designation in the obituary was because of Bethuel's uncle, also named Bethuel.] 

The will was written two years before Bethuel's death. It says...as regards to my youngest and afflicted son Bethuel it is my will that my Executors provide him with all the comforts of life, to live in the family of my son Isaac or John as he may choose - whilst being with Isaac his wife Rebecca is to receive at the rate of Thirty dollars per year and when living with John his wife Maria is to receive the same - to be paid out of the estate not previously devised - and should Bethuel by accident or affliction become more helpless than at present the sum to be drawn from the estate shall be increased in proportion to his frailty and the expense necessary to keep him. Bethuel have one of the best beds and bedding in the house.

I still don't know what type of "affliction" Bethuel had, but I love that his father was taking care of him even on his death bed. And, I love that, even though his mother had died several years before, Bethuel would continue to live with his family in the house of one of his brothers.

My Line of Descent
  • Daniel Vincent (1760-1827) m Angelchy Huff/Hough/Heuff (1760-1821)
  • Bethuel Vincent (1798-1828) is a brother to my direct ancestor Elizabeth "Betsy" Vincent (1789-1846) m George Watson (1783-1856)
  • Sarah Jane Watson (1826-1853) m John Quiggle Stewart (1825-1922)
  • Alexander Stewart (1852-1922) m Catharine Jane McClintock (1852-1929)
  • Andrew "Andy" McClinock Stewart (1882-1954) m. Bessie Waldron Merrill (1879-1959)
  • James Edward Stewart (1910-1972) m. Hazel Lucille Peters (1910-1975) (my paternal grandparents)

Do we share common ancestors? I'd love to talk! Please write me at drleeds@sbcglobal.net


  1. Sad obituary but how touching that his family took great care of him.

  2. Hard to believe that someone could die in a brook - you just never know. I'm so glad that his family took care of him.

    1. I wish I knew more, but am thankful for what I've found. And, I do really appreciate how it appears his family took care of him.

  3. Though you don't know everything you know a lot. What a wonderful will.

    1. You're right! And, I'm thankful for what I have been able to discover.

  4. This is so touching. I love that a legal document can tell you so much.

    1. I agree! And, of course, newspapers are another wonderful resource. :)


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