Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Beuhring and Brown In Cabell and Kanawha County

I interviewed Kitty Forbes today at her apartment at Woodlands.  
Kitty had been nice enough to take me to Charleston several years ago to view portraits of ancestors that we share.

At the time that we went to Charleston the portraits hung in the living room at the home of Jean Fitzgerald McBride who is now deceased.  I took photos of the portraits at the time, however, my photography skills were not as good as they are now and it was before digital photography was as widespread.  I was very disappointed in my photos when I had them developed.

The two people in the portraits were:  Frederick G. L. Beuhring and his wife, Frances Dannenberg Beuhring.

The story is told that the couple commissioned the portraits to send them to family back in Germany.  Frances was not from Germany, so the best guess is that her husband wanted his parents and/or family to see his pretty bride and know that the couple were doing well in the United States.  The family in Germany fell upon hard times as a result of World War I and contacted family here asking if someone in the family would purchase the portraits as they were in need of financial aid.  Kitty told me that her aunt, Louisa Brown Fitzgerald purchased the portraits and that Kitty could never remember a time in Kitty's lifetime in which the portraits did not hang in the home of her aunt.

 F.G.L. and his wife, Frances, were married in 1820 at Chateau Blanche, the country home of her uncle, Frederick Koenig.  F.G.L. was living in Baltimore and working for Uncle Koenig when the couple met and made plans to wed.  They were both well educated and reflected a taste for music, books and the refinements of social exchange all of their lives.  Shortly after their marriage the couple moved to Barboursville in Cabell County, Virginia.  FGL continued his shipping contact with the Koenig family in Baltimore. 

It is not clear just when FGL moved to Barboursville.  Court records show that he served on a jury in Cabell County May 3, 1819.  That would have been before his marriage.  FGL served as postmaster of Barbarboursville from August 7, 1820 until Sept 9, 1822 and then again from May 12 1823 until April 22, 1829. At that time it was called Cabell Court House, Cabell County, VA.  The name  was changed to Barbarboursville May 10, 1882.

The couple had four children:  Frederick Konig Dannenberg Beuhring from whom I descend, Anna Marie (Mary), Emma Adelaide, and Louise Mayer from whom Kitty descends.  Please use the URL at the side of this page to see more information about the members of this family at my ancestry site.  

In 1837. for the sum of $6000 F.G.L. Beuhring purchased the property that had been the home of  Major Nathaniel Scales. This land was once part of the Savage Grant.  Their home was known as Maple Grove.  The land stretched from the river to the hills between 7th and 11th streets in what is now downtown Huntington.  Where “Beuhring Lane” (now 7th Street) touched the Ohio was one point in the original land grant of 1775. (I have a zeroxed copy of the written agreement of this sale that gives precise descriptions of where the land was located among my things.  It gives the date of the document as March 30, 1837) The present DAR cabin in Ritter Park is said to be located very close to the site on which originally set the Beuhring’s vineyard keeper.

Maple Grove was described as having “many luxuries little known in the neighborhood” brought from the Koenig’s “Chateau Blanche” and a place where, besides frequent guests, “many charming young people...Laidleys, Browns, Buffingtons, and Hites...fully enjoyed all it offered.”

The Brown family lived in the adjoining farm to the west of the Beuhring family's home place.  

The youngest daughter, Louisa Mayer Beuhring married James Henry Brown who lived on the adjoining farm (just below 7th Street in the present city of Huntington.)  This couple first lived at Maple Grove, then at Beechgrove on Four Pole Creek where their first child, Virginia, was born September 23, 1847.  In 1848 or 1849 the Brown’s moved to Charleston and shortly after bought the Elms.

This is the couple from which Kitty descends.  Kitty says that her Brown Family came from Virginia to Cabell County very early.  Their place in Virginia was called Bloomsberry.  The Brown family lived on a farm that was a part of the Savage Grant.  The Brisban house was on the property that had belonged to the Brown family.  However, The brick home that the Brown family had lived on no longer exists....it was on the river.  When the Brisban's first lived in the house that survived on the Brown farm, they had to rent because they could not find the present owner of the home to make an offer.

The home in which Kitty's mother was both born and married was called the Elms in Charleston, WV. It was torn down to build the Federal Building in Charleston.  It was purchased from a man who had been in Napoleon's army and who had built the home by James Henry Brown, Kitty's gr-grandfather.

The above photo is of the Elms and the copy was given to me by Kitty.

The above photo is also of the Elms in a later time period.

And the above is a copy of a painting that belongs to Kitty that depicts the Elms.

 Kitty had the original mantle in front of which her mother and father had been married installed in the Craik-Patton house in Charleston

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