Governor John Brooks (1752-1825) and US Revolutionary War Hero.
Vital Statistics Edit
- Son of Captain Caleb Brooks 1694.
- Born at Medford, MA - baptized there 4 May 1752.
- Died at Medford, MA - 1 Mar 1825, age 73
- Married Lucy Smith, who died at Medford, MA 26 Sept 1791, age 38.
In 1775 while studying to become a physician he also became a respected leader of a company of minute-men based at Reading, MA. With the Brittish advance on concord on 19 April 1775, Major Brooks mobilized his company and engaged the British on their retreat at Merriam's Corner, where they inflicted significant casualties without loss of their own.
From contemporary accounts: "As the enemy passed the road from Bedford, they met a body of minute-men, commanded by Major John Brooks. A little below Bedford road there was a sharp action, and several of the British were killed."
Another account: " The enemy faced about suddenly and fired a volley of musketry uopn us. They overshot. The fire was immediately returned, and two British soldiers fell dead in the road near the brook." The engagement was followed by more fighting in Lincoln Woods.
He missed the engagement at Bunker Hill while trying to collect reinforcements. On 1 Jan 1776 he was appointed a major in Webb's 19th Regiment.
At the Battle of Saratoga, Lieutenant-Colonel Brooks commanded the extreme left of the American line against the Germans. He was again present at Valley Forge and the Battle of Monmouth.
During the War of 1812, John Brooks was Adjutant-General of the State of Massachusetts. In 1788 was a member of the Constitutional Convention, US Marshal (1791-96) and Governor of Massachusetts (1816-1823). It was during Brooks's tenure that Massachusetts's territory of Maine became an independent state. Having served seven terms, Brooks declined to run for an eighth term and retired to private life. His body is interred at Salem Street Burying Ground in Medford, Massachusetts.
In 1836, a large granite pyramid memorial was erected in his honor at the Medford burial grounds.
Children of Governor John Brooks and Lucy Smith Edit
- 1. Lucy Brooks 1775A - b. Reading, MA, married George O'Kill Stuart and had a son who was mayor of Quebec.
- 2. child who died at Medford, Oct 1778.
- 3. Alexander Scammel Brooks 1781 - who was captain of artillery in War of 1812 and killed by steamboat explosion off Florida Coast in 1836
- 4. John Brooks, Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps, died in Battle of Lake Erie, September 10, 1813.
- 5. Child who died 24 Mar 1786.
- Historic Places, Homes and Genealogical Memoirs of Middlesex County, publ 1908, Vol 1, pg 4-9. (Especially the 2nd article by William R Cutler) (Google Books)
- Wikipedia for John Brooks - Biographical Sketch.
- Official Commonwealth of Massachusetts Governor Biography