" Mother Of The Civil War ", Sarah Brandon

JPK Huson 1863

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#1
sarah brandon.jpg


Well, forgivably named so, in her part of southern Ohio. I'm still digging around for information concerning her, and what must have been her Find A Grave memorial has been mysteriously removed, no idea why. Isn't that odd? According to what one finds when pursuing the usual ' Google ' search, it was formerly there but try clicking on the link a poof- it's gone although an incorrect name could have a lot to do with that. Still- no mention of her there and considering she had an awful, awful lot of children ( Duggers, go home ) you'd have thought there would be most of Ohio claiming connections there.

Some of these must have perished in the war, out of SO many, surely left offspring.

" Mrs. Sarah Brandon, known as the "Mother of the Civil War," died at her home in southern part of Belmont County, just across the river from here, last night, at the age of 113 years.
Her death resulted from a broken hip, sustained five days ago.
Mrs. Brandon was known all over southern Ohio as the Mother of 23 children, 22 of whom were boys. Sixteen of them saw service in the Civil War, fourteen on the Union side and two with the Confederacy.
Most of them never returned home. One son, aged 84, not the first born, is living in Bellaire.
Reports that Mrs. Brandon accompanied one of her sons to war is without foundation, and her title "Mother of the Civil War" was given to her because of the number of her sons who engaged in the conflict. "

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ohmfahs/cwmother.htm

sarah brandon article1.JPG

sarah brandon article2.JPG

sarah brandon article3.JPG


A report from a book, where the author had a last-minute doubt on the numbers and should have. 32? Someone had their numbers backwards, since 23 is a breathtaking number all by itself.
sarah brandon 1.JPG

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It will/would/might take QUITE awhile to track down all her offspring's contributions during the war. Possible to be done, just tough especially considering this would be Ohio, a state where the records are not quite as easy to pull up as say, PA or NY. It would be very, very interesting to do so, however, unless it's just me and this ADD approach to finding it ALL too interesting to not go look up.
 
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JPK Huson 1863

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Ah- please excuse, not Ohio, West Virginia- will go tool around there. I haven't attempted to see what the system would be like there, but it still may be tough given the fact that this article states Mrs. Brandon did not keep track of her children's birth dates.
 

donna

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#5
Annie You can post Memorial and maybe we can add information.

I did find messages on her and her husband on Ancestry Message Board. It dated 2002. The person who was related to her said that Charles Brandon, her husband had been married 3 times. Besides 22 children with Sarah, he had 10 other children with 2 previous spouses. I will see if can find more on them.
 

donna

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I posted her on the Find A Grave thread but decided to give that site here too. The person who placed her Memorial had much information on her, her children and her first husband, Charles. Thought very interesting and person had done much research.

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=93588162
 

JPK Huson 1863

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Ah! Ok, then the ' 32 ' children thing I found was not out of line- and she DID have 22 of her own! I'd read somewhere she married someone with quite a flock of his own, so thought perhaps she ( only?! ) had 12 children. Boy, numbers like that play with your head, when you start saying ' only ' in connection with TWELVE children, right? You can also see where she finally gave up as an elderly woman and just had no clue on the ages of hers, and how old they were. Gosh, I keep having to stop and think about how old my eldest is, and he'll be 34 this coming summe- I only have 4!. ( That number shocks him only slightly less than it shocks me, believe me. ) Thanks so much for the time you've invested, Donna- you tend to have extremely good abilites with being able to mine information- Mrs. Sarah will not remain a mystery for long, hopefully.

I had less than no time yesterday- hopefully will today, maybe can also search because I am very interested in this family- be SO good to be able to see who and where her Civil War sons were. Most Union, 2 Confederate- one of the genuine ' brother against brother ' families . Very much deserves looking into.
 

donna

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When I get looking for someone, I just can't give up. I go to all kinds of sites and message boards. You find others are looking for the same folks.

I still have several brick walls in my own family. I refuse to give up on them. I know there is information on them somewhere out there. There have got to be others who are related to them and who I haven't run across as of yet. Just call me an optimist. I will keep searching until I can search no more.
 

JPK Huson 1863

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Well, it works! You find things I could have sworn were just not there.

We have several- I know what you mean about never, ever giving up- although with one there just does not seem to be any hope, esp. if his death cert. comes back without his parents on it. It'll mean he WANTED to hide who he was and never told anyone. I sent for those 2 weeks ago, and am haunting the mailbox- every other time I've requested records, they've surprised me by sending things back almost be return mail. Not this time! It's my grgrgrandfather who served in the 50th PA- for all intents and purposes fell out of the sky to enlist under that name, in that place. I'll frequently say ' That's IT, I give up!', and never do- 3 months later I'm back at it.
 

JPK Huson 1863

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I'm guessing it would be because the offspring who fought in the war were Brandons, not Sweeneys or the other name? It's possible that for publicity's sake, it was considered not moral of her to have had 3, whole husbands, esp since it now appears she divorced one of them. That man was also the father of the veterans and a vet himself- little tough to present her as a kindly, homely MOM. when she booted a veteran of 2 wars.
 

John Hartwell

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#17
A bit more about this indomitable lady, or more accurately about her husband, Charles Brandon. Apparently, Sarah was his third wife. If this can be believed, she left him after bearing him 15 sons (causing him to die of a broken heart!). From Charles' two previous marriages, Sarah had "inherited" an additional 20 step-sons! So the ACW sons were not all her own.
brandon3.png

[May 30, 1910 Hemet News (Hemet, Cal.)]​

There's a great deal of suspicious material in all these news clippings -- a lot of hearsay and "family stories." It would be interesting to see what could be actually documented.

There's another clipping, and more about Sarah Brandon on Pinterest.
 

JPK Huson 1863

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Ha! Goodness, I would hope not! All 33 her children, I mean. Yes, I f you read all the clippings above, they're wildly divergent in content. You can gather a. She's very, very elderly and b. Had an awful lot of children c. An unspecified number of them fought in the war.

Very cool, how she's been adopted by genealogists! Since this story has been posted all over Facebook, etc. seems fine to continue sharing it. This clipping was found in a family Bible, interest was piqued afterwards. 2 sons fought for the South, 14 for the North. Of course, there doesn't seem to be documentation on this but it does say professionals tracked down other information. Seems fuzzy on the war?
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" If all 23 are her children by birth then it would appear that there are some multiple births among them since there appears to be only 17 years difference between her oldest son (89) and the youngest one (72). There was only 1 girl, so apparently 22 boys.

She died in 1914 according to her obituary in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. In her obituary, it said she was unable to count the number of grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-great-grandchildren, and great-great-great-grandchildren that she had.
"
https://niume.com/post/211721
 

Anna Elizabeth Henry

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#19
Wow - just wow! :O o: All those kids - all those boys to raise! My goodness, she must've had the patience of a saint. Bless her for raising all those children, especially when a portion of them weren't hers. What she must've endured during the war years, poor woman. Thanks Donna and Annie for sharing her incredible story. It's not only fascinating, but makes one take a long hard look at the hardships faced by women in the era. Imagine marrying so young to a much older man with children who might very well be older than you! Then having a bunch of your own as well. I read recently that 65% of women in that era either died in childbirth or shortly thereafter from complications (mostly from blood loss or infection). It's a miracle she survived 23 births (if all are hers given some would've been multiple births).

As a side note regarding her amazing advanced age, I always wonder if the ages of folks back then were accurately taken. I have a great-grandfather who on his death certificate his birth year was followed by a question mark and no month or day was known. Which of course made me sad and curious how the heck someone doesn't know that information about themselves given he appeared to be raised by his family.
 
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#20
Large families was the norm...g-g-g-granparents had 11 children-3 of the five sons served in civil war and of the 6 daughters -3 married Civil war veterans {according to family legend one of the spinster daugthers was enguaged to a Civil war veteran who was killed {alas his name is not known....}
 

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