In the 1880's various companies (mainly Goodspeed's but there were others) went into prosperous communities of some size and wrote the local history. For a price you could have your pioneer family included. Some were written by frustrated fiction writers whose poetic descriptions of the landscape and the early struggles is heavy on emotion but thin on facts, dates, and names. Others were filled with names (often with just initials) but thin on any of the stories of who came first and who followed or what they did. As a result, many of these histories are filled with lots of information on families (biographies) but they are heavy on assumptions, legend and filled with bad information (names misspelled, wives maiden names misidentified, etc.). Since those who included their biographies had to pay for that privilege that immediately limited who might include their story or line. The wealthy in a community were included but not the rank and file in most cases. Thumb through any of these at the "Biography" sections and you will see this demonstrated. This is often still the case in county genealogy websites where they base their information on these well known individuals or those who were long term in the county to the exclusion of others.
Looking over early tax lists, marriage lists, and land deeds are names that it was clear were there, sometimes for a generation, before they moved on. They built the area and then headed for 'something more' due to drought, high costs of life, death, or the lure of what was over the other hill.
As a result, some researchers often assume that because only one family of a name was in "the book" there were no others. Sometimes they assume that there could be no relationship because none made it into the book. The truth is that often when a man or woman might have several spouses, the first born children might have gone away and been basically forgotten. New families were created and new wives might not know about those earlier children. The offspring left might never know that they had a half-brother or sister out there. The same with cousins. In some documented cases, the very spelling of the name changed to just such a separation of family lines.
In Warren Co., Tennessee there is a group of BROWN family members whose relationship is unclear but there are teasing elements of family legend that may bear a closer look and with fresher eyes.
There was another Isaac Brown (in fact several in TN). This particular line is first known to be in the county due to the birth of the oldest son.
1829 Aug— Age: 23; Warren Co. TN; Eldest son born here
1836 — Age: 30Warren, Tennessee, United States
1838 — Age: 32Warren, Tennessee, United StatesIsaac H Brown Year: 1838 Residence: Warren, Tennessee
1840 — Age: 34Warren, Tennessee, United Statesme: Isaac Brown Home in 1840 (City, County, State): Warren, Tennessee Free White Persons - Males - Under 5: 2 Free White Persons - Males - 5 thru 9: 1 Free White Persons - Males - 10 thru 14: 1 Free White Persons - Males - 30 thru 39: 1 Free White Person
1841-10 Dec— Age: 35 Phelps, Co., Mo, United States10 Dec 1841 Acres: 84.4 Meridian: 5th
Ptolema Philadelphus Brown1829 – 1903
Juan Fernandez Brown1831 – 1850
Archimedes Brown1834 – 1863
Selticana Brown1834 – 1900
Lycurgus Brown1836 – 1882
Elsinor Odensia Brown1838 – 1910
Mithero Berzanes (BarJames) "M.B." Brown1840 – 1910
Mary A. Brown1843 – 1887
Marcellus Brown1845 – 1933
Fascilina Brown1847 – 1885
Marcius Sabinus Brown1849 – 1912
Leonidas Hannibal Brown i1852 – 1897
Isaac died in 1892 in Texas Co., Missouri
To be continued...