Friday, September 9, 2016

Brewer Family Ambrotypes

by Marian Matyn
A recent addition to the Dwight J. Brewer Collection, 1862, 2012 includes 3 ambrotypes from the 1850s and 1860s and a CD of the 3 images.

Dwight J. Brewer and two of his wives, sisters Carrie and Ellen Stearns as children.

From left: Carrie (Stearns) Brewer (1850-1935) from the early 1850s;
Ellen (Stearns) Brewer (1839-1918) and her brother Edwin (1844-1921) probably taken in the early 1850s;
Dwight J. Brewer (1844-1881) probably taken around 1860.

Carrie and Ellen were born in NY and both died in Clare, MI.
Dwight J. Brewer (1842-1881) was the son of Jairus and Lucy Brewer. After Lucy died, Jairus married Mary Langdon and, later, Ellen Stearns (1839-1918) sister of Edwin Stearns (1839-1918). Dwight had two siblings: Augusta and Julius. By 1850 Jairus moved his family to Mich. Dwight enlisted in Company F, 20th Mich. Infantry on Aug. 9, 1862 at Brooklyn, Mich., for three years, at age 20. He was mustered on Aug. 18, 1862. Dwight was discharged at Knoxville, Tenn., May 24, 1865. He contracted small pox at the end of war and spent time in two hospitals in Knoxsville recovering (as documented in his last three letters). After the war, Dwight married Edwin and Ellen's younger sister, Carrie (1850-1935) with whom he had three children. Dwight died in 1881 and was buried in Cherry Grove Cemetery, Clare, Mich. Edwin Stearns enlisted at Norvell for three years, on Aug. 11, 1862 in the same company as Dwight and was also mustered on Aug. 18, 1862. Edwin was wounded in action on June 17, 1864. He was promoted to corporal on May 1, 1865. On May 30, 1865 at DeLaney House, D.C., Edwin was mustered out. (This information is from the collection.)

You can read the Brewer family collection catalog record at