Name: This French surname is variously seen as Brasseur, Brasher, Brashear, Brashears, and Brassieur, among others. One source claims there are more than 35 variant spellings among the various descendants. The original French spelling is most frequently given as "Brasseur," but even this is less than completely certain. His given name appears as Benois, Benoit, Bennet, and Benjamin, and there may be others.
Birth: His birth date ranges from about 1590 to about 1630. Nearly everyone agrees he was born in France, but several different specific locations in France are given. One of the merged records had "Pernes, [Comtat] Venaissan, Vaucluse, France," b. 1616. That birthplace is associated with the apparently erroneous connection of Allemand De Jocas Brassier and Madeline De Cheilus as his parents. This was thoroughly debunked in Brashear & McCoy in a segment of the book titled, The deBrassier Nonsense, which is also available on the web. Birth date/place in the data section is about 1610, France, because nothing more precise has been documented [too early if father born ca. 1597; used 1620 as most-likely; his sister was born in 1622.].
Family connections: Robert is said to be the name of his father and his younger brother, who accompanied him to America.
Immigration Record: Benjamin Brashear,Year: 1637, Virginia, Source Publication Code: 1262, Primary Immigrant: Brashear, Benjamin. Annotation: Date and place of settlement or date and place of arrival. Names not restricted to the Order of Founders and Patriots of America.
The following notes are copied in full or in part on several different web pages. They may or may not be originally from Cheryl Grubb's website. Source references are those shown on that page, except "Tonsing" which indicates another website which might be the original source for this information.
1637 - Benjamin arrived in the English American Colonies sometime before 1638 and settled in the Upper Norfolk County which soon became Nansemond County, Virginia. At the time of Benjamin's arrival with his brother Robert, there were only few thousand persons in these colonies. Source: Back p.6
1653, 14 April - A land claim is issued for "Benjamin Brasseure" for three hundred acres on "or being at the head of a Creeke called Indian Creeke being a branch of the western branch of Nancemond river...joining the land of M. John Ganat." This grant was made for paying the cost of transporting six persons into the Colony. These transportation costs gave the person "headrights" to fifty acres a person. Although the patent itself was dated as 12 April 1633 it wasn't registered until 14 April of 1653. Signed by Edward Diggs Esq. Source: VA Land Patents, Book 3, p.33
1658 - Probably due to Maryland's more liberal laws on religious freedom, Benjamin and his brother, Robert Jr., move to Calvert County, Province of Maryland. He may have moved up the Chesapeake Bay by boat to settle on 1150- acres plantation known locally as "Upper Bennett." The plantation had been surveyed in 1651, for Richard Bennett, a Virginia merchant and a devout Puritan. This deed was one of several plots that seem to have been reserved for Puritan believers under Richard Bennett's guidance. Source: Back, p.6
1660 - Benjamin is called for jury duty. (this is the earliest known remaining record of Benjamin in Maryland, most other records were probably destroyed in one of several fires in Calvert Co. Court House). Source: Maryland Archives, Vol 41, p.419
1661, 14 June - He is employed asa Justice of the Peace and is named a Member of Calvert County's Commissioners, Maryland. Source: Tonsing
1662, 4 December - Benjamin Brassieur was naturalized at Maryland. Source: Tonsing
1663, 25 May - Benjamin Brassieur died on 25 May 1663 at near Chesapeake, Calvert County, Maryland, USA. Source: Tonsing
May 1663 - Benjamin Brassieur was buried at Calvert County, Maryland, USA. Source: Tonsing
Note: When Benjamin "Benoit" or "Benois" Brasseur and his twin brother Thomas were born in 1620 in France, their father, Robert, was 23. Benoit or Benjamin Brasseur had three sons and five daughters with Mary Richford. He died in December 1662 in Calvert, Maryland, at the age of 39. [he died in May 1663].
Benoit anglicized his name to Benjamin Brashear about the time he applied for English citizenship in the Province of Maryland in 1662. He died shortly afterwards [25 May 1663].
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