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The Brownlow Family
John Brownlow (c.1730-1774)


     The exact birth date of John Brownlow, son of James Brownlow, is unknown but it is possible to estimate his birth year. He is mentioned in his fathers will that was written June 4, 1740. It is believed that the children were named in the order of their birth. In the will John and his sister Jane are placed before James, who was born in 1737, and after William, who is known to have been born in 1727. There fore it is reasonable to assume he was born about 1730. He was born, presumably, in County Armagh, Ireland.

     The exact year of his immigration to the Colonies is unknown but it was at least prior to 1761 when he was mentioned in the records of Cumberland County, North Carolina, as a merchant and tavern keeper. Sometime after he moved to North Carolina John married Sarah Council. They were the parents on one son, James. Sarah died and John remarried to Rebecca Evans. They were the parents of one daughter, Mary. These were the only children born to John Brownlow. On November 26, 1766, John was made a Justice of the Peace for Cumberland County.

     On April 27, 1767, John Brownlow bought 100 acres in Craven County, South Carolina, where his brother William was moving to from Ireland in December of the same year. In November of 1770 John Brownlow was a Lieutenant in the Cumberland County, North Carolina, Militia. His last recorded land purchase occurred on July 11, 1772, when he bought 50 acres in Cumberland County, North Carolina.

     The next record that mentions John Brownlow is an April of 1774 when Arthur Council was made guardian of James Brownlow, John's son. At this time Arthur Council and Rebecca Brownlow were granted letters of administration on the estate of John Brownlow, deceased. It was stated that his negroes be divided between his two children. his widow later married George Fletcher and he was made guardian of Mary Brownlow.

By 1790 George Fletcher had died and Rebecca had the following household:

Cumberland County, North Carolina

Rebecca Fletcher 0-1-2

1 male under 16 (unknown?)

1 female (Mary?)

1 female (Rebecca?)


Rebecca Evans Brownlow Fletcher died Mary 19, 1824, in Cumberland County, North Carolina, and left a will in which she names her grandchildren (Henry E. Purviance, Catharine Fitzharris, and Mary Browblow Tams) and great-grandchildren (Samuel Archibald Purviance, John Strong Purviance, Lawrence Emmet Fitzharris, and Catherine Eleanor Fitzharris). Her only child, Mary Brownlow Purviance, had died on January 23, 1801.


Children of John Brownlow and Sarah Council:

James Brownlow (1767-1814)


Children of John Brownlow and Rebecca Evans:

Mary Brownlow (1774-1801)