The Winchester congregation of the German Reformed Church was formed under the name of Reformed Calvinists or
German Reformed Church, about 1741.
Henry Brinker was one of the five trustees that received the deed from Lord Fairfax, for the land to build
their first church.
He also paid for a portion of the lots to be set aside for this cemetery.
Pictured here is the ruins of that church that still stands today, after a fire destroyed it in 1854.
Many of the people of Henry's day are buried here.
Burial ceased in this section of the cemetery when it became impossible to dig without striking unmarked remains.
In her diary Mary Greenhow Lee stated on June 17, 1862, that hundreds of federal dead were buried in the Lutheran Cemetery,
as many as five in a grave.
(Source: "Hist. of the Lower Shenandoah Valley", J.E. Norris, 1890, p. 200.
Shenandoah Valley Genealogical Society)
To fully understand the life
and movement of Henry Brinker and his descendants, we must first understand some of the history of FrederickCounty,
Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley. Henry was one of
the first to settle in this area and played a tremendous roll in its development.
He is known to most genealogists as Henry Brinker the Pioneer.
Frederick County Virginia
Click to Enlarge
Frederick County was created from Orange County
by an Act of the Virginia Burgesses in November, 1738. It was named for Frederick
Louis, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of George II. Because the new County lacked sufficient monetary means to
support itself, the Governor and Council did not authorize the formal establishment of Frederick County until a Court Session in November 1743. During this period of time, the first
significant group of new settlers had arrived from Pennsylvania;Maryland; and other states north of Virginia, followed by many from the Piedmont
and Tidewater areas of Virginia. They followed a well-worn Indian trail along the Opequon
Valley which later became part of the "Great Valley Road" one of the most historic roads in America. European settlers seeking
new lands and opportunities followed this route, first used by Native Americans, to travel from southeastern Pennsylvania
through the Shenandoah Valley and Cumberland Gap into frontier regions of Kentucky and beyond. During the Nineteenth Century,
the Valley Road was rebuilt as the Valley Turnpike. By this time the road
was vital, not only to the Shenandoah Valley, but also as a link to commercial and cultural centers in Virginia; Maryland;
Pennsylvania; and cities to the north. The Valley Road also played a prominent roll in Civil War history. The Valley Road remains important today as a beautiful National Highway (Route 11) and in its contemporary manifestation
as the intensively used Interstate 81.
In its original configuration, "Old" FrederickCounty encompassed the present counties of: Frederick; Clarke; Berkeley (West Virginia); Jefferson (WV); Morgan (WV); and portions of Warren, Hampshire (WV); and Hardy (WV). Frederick grew in size in 1754 when all of AugustaCounty's land within the boundaries of the Northern Neck was added to it. This brought most of Shenandoah and part
of PageCounty within its jurisdiction. That same year HampshireCounty was divided from Frederick. In 1772 Berkeley and Dunmore (later Shenandoah) Counties were separated from Frederick. The final division of Frederick's lands came in 1836 with the creation of Clarke and Warren counties. This left Frederick in its present configuration (nine square miles of Frederick's land was annexed to the city of Winchester in 1970).
Click to enlarge
The area in whichFrederickCounty is located was originally owned by the Virginia Company but was taken over by the English Crown in 1624. In 1649,
Charles II granted seven royalist supporters the land "bounded by and within the heads" of the Potomac and RappahannockRivers. By 1681, Thomas II, Lord Culpeper, owned most of this original land grant.
Thomas VI Lord Fairfax
Click to enlarge
After he died in 1689, his daughter married Thomas V, Lord Fairfax, and later, their son Thomas
VI, Lord Fairfax, inherited the whole land grant.
Gov. Alexander Spotswood
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In 1716, Virginia Governor Alexander Spotswood and his fifty "Knights of the Golden Horseshoe" crossed
into the Shenandoah Valley through Swift Run Gap and returned with glowing accounts. Englishmen soon settled the piedmont, then pushed west by
foot and horse through passes in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and many more German and Scotch-Irish settlers came down the valleys
from Philadelphia and Lancaster, Pennsylvania. (Source: The History of Frederick Co.)
Some of the earliest settlers were Quakers who built theHopewell Friends Meeting House which still
stands near Clearbrook (7 mile NE of present day Winchester, Virginia.).
Hopewell Meeting (now called Hopewell Centre Meeting) of the Religious Society of Friends
(Quakers) was established in 1734 on land that was granted to Alexander Ross (an Irish Quaker) and Morgan Bryan (an Irish
Presbyterian) in 1730 and 1732 by Lt. Govenor William Gooch of Virginia. This grant was for 100,000 acres, located about 6
miles north of present day Winchester, Frederick County, Virginia
Ross and Bryan had brought about 70 families to the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia from Pennsylvania where they hoped to establish a new Quaker community. The Meeting Hall is the oldest surviving place of worship in
the area and has been in continuous use since it was built. It is located on Hopewell Road (formerly State Route
672) one mile west of Clearbrook in FrederickCounty, Virginia.
It was established nine years prior to the creation of FrederickCounty, in the section that was originally Orange Co.
Following the custom of Friends, records were faithfully kept from the time of the establishment
of the Meeting. All of these records have been preserved with the exception of the first twenty-five years. The records for
the years 1734 to 1759 were lost in a fire that destroyed the house of William Jolliffe in 1759. (Source: Society of Friends, History of our meetings)
Looking at the time line 1734-1759 we have many verified records of two major parts
of the Brinker family, Henry and Conrad, living within a six mile radius of this Meeting House. We also have
many verified records of later members of the Brinker family that are property of the Society of Friends, thus we know for
sure that they did have a part in this group and it will be seen later that these records may have contained many of the first Brinker
Family vital records.
The Government of Colonial Virginia wanted this wilderness settled as quickly as possible, as a buffer
against the Indian attacks; but Robert "King" Carter, Lord Fairfax's agent, was settling Fairfax's land slowly in large plantations.
The government of Virginia had chartered counties within Fairfax’s land grant as settlements spread up the Northern Neck and west through his land grant.
Virginia began to argue that Fairfax's land
grant ended at the Blue Ridge, and began granting up to 1,000 acres each to settler families
west of the Blue Ridge. Virginia gave particular developers the right to recruit settlers and sell them up to 1,000 acres per family
within a general "grant" area. Each parcel would revert back to the state of Virginia unless settled with a house and orchard within two years. One of these developers was the Van Meter
Governor William Gooch of Virginia was concerned to protect his colony from any possible French
or Indian incursions by planting settlements west of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the Shenandoah Valley.Thus he responded
favorably to a request in 1730 by two brothers, John and Isaac Van Meter, for lands beyond the Blue Ridge where they could settle with their families and friends from New York and New Jersey.In all, the
Van Meters received three grants, one of 10,000 acres in the forks of the Shenandoah and Cedar Creek, another of 20,000 acres
bounded by the Potomac, the Shenandoah, and Opequon Creek, and a third of 10,000 acres between the Shenandoah and Opequon.
These grants were in present Berkeley, Frederick and Shenandoah counties.In
return, they agreed to settle one family for every 1,000 acres within two years.
in Virginia" by Richard MacMaster) and (The court records of the
Fairfax vs Jost Hite trail).
of this land was already claimed by the Fairfax family as part of that vast territory granted by King Charles II as the Proprietary
of the Northern Neck, so to avoid possible litigation the Van Meters sold everything in August 1731 to Joist Hite (Heydt),
a remarkable man who came to America in 1710 as a penniless emigrant shipped to New York under a charitable scheme.
Hite prospered well, as a grain miller in Pennsylvania, then sold all his property in eastern Pennsylvania and used the proceeds to buy out the Van Meter brothers. He settled his family on the Opequon and went to Williamsburg, Virginia to negotiate this new grant of 100,000 acres with three men
with Ulster connections, Robert McKay, a Quaker, and William Duff and
his nephew Robert Green of Spotsylvania
County, Virginia. Hite set to work at once to recruit settlers in Pennsylvania. By Christmas 1735 at least 67 families were settled on lands sold them by Hite and his partners.
1732, Jost Hite settled 16 families on 5,000 acres of his "grant" and built Hite's Fort at Bartonsville, then, Orange Co.
Va. (About 5 miles SW of present day Winchester).
Frederick County was created from western Orange County by the House of
Burgesses on December 21, 1738. (Source: Frederick Co. History).
Wood, County Surveyor for Orange County, platted a town at the Orange County seat, which he named Winchester, after his birthplace.
It consisted of 26 half-acre lots and three streets within 1300 acres, which he claimed as wilderness land owned by the state
of Virginia, those streets are now Loudoun, Boscawen and Cameron, but he was unable to establish ownership.
government in Virginia was originally
by self-perpetuating courts. Frederick County's Court was proclaimed and organized in 1743, and its officials took their oaths
of office on November 11, 1743. It first met at the surveying office of its clerk,
James Wood, at the site on which he later built his estate, called Glen
Burnie (Now a museum about 3 miles west of Winchester).
Click to Enlarge
Upon the establishment of this court, James Wood presented his proposal to the court and both
him and the court knew that there could be trouble down the road, because this land may actually be part of Lord Fairfax's
grant, but, they went ahead and approved the building of the town and to protect the county they made Wood put up a monetary
Click the picture to read the court document
late 1743, the Frederick County Court admitted that Lord Fairfax's land included their County.
the age of 16, George Washington was a member of a surveying party that came to FrederickCounty for Lord Fairfax in 1748. In 1749, Lord Fairfax moved to FrederickCounty and built his home, (Greenway Court,
at White Post, in present-day ClarkeCounty). He accepted Wood's 1,300 acre claim and other additional lots and Winchester (then called
Fredericktown) was legally established, within Frederick Co. (Source: History of Frederick
Frederick Co. records began in 1744 while Winchester's began in 1790
and they are much smaller in volume as the town size did not change from 1754 until 1905.
Land and probate records for Winchester begin 1790, Marriage bonds
for Winchester in 1790 and some marriage licenses for period 1843-1855. There are also a few birth and death records from
1855 to 1870. Unlike Frederick records, many of these records for Winchester were destroyed during the Civil War.
Hans Hendrick Brungger was born
July 10, 1722 in Elsau Parish, Canton, Zurich, Switzerland.
On November 4, 1734at the age of 11, Henry and
his family left their home in a tiny village in the foot hills of the Swiss Alps on the banks of the Rhine River, in
route to America. (Source:Letter to Barbara J. Brinker of San Francisco, CA from Swiss Archives, dated 1986)
No doubt, at the age of eleven Henry knew of the oppression being put
on his father and realized that their home was being taken away from them but, as we read the story of his father's hardships, we can only imagine what it was like for a boy eleven years old, traveling 375 miles to a huge
bustling city, were the people treated him like common cargo or live stock. Then being loaded on a ship with very little room
to move around, over looking nothing but the waters of the Atlantic Ocean for 8-10 weeks and watching his four year old sister,
Maria Elizabeth, die and be thrown over board.
Click to enlarge
On June 28, 1735 again we can only immagine the excitement this
young child felt when he spotted land, as the Brigantine Mary pulled into the Bay of Delaware and docked at Fishbourne's Wharf
in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Source:
Pennsylvania Archives, Second Series, Vol. 8, p. 186-189)
With 41 passengers, 8-10 crew members, all of their baggage and enough
food and supplies to last the 8-10 week voyage on board that 88 foot boat, imagine what Henry felt as he stepped out on solid
ground and began to walk, with his family, two blocks up the street to the courthouse, where his father was required
to take the oath of allegiance to the state of Pennsylvania.
The State of Pennsylvania required all male immigrants over the age
of sixteen to take this oath immediately, upon arrival. This being two weeks before his twelfth birthday, Henry
did not have to take the oath.
A whole new world,
Wow!! what a birthday
was at this point that his name was changed to the English translation “Henry Brinker”. In the German language
the name Hans for many generations was short for Johannes, but later became a legal name in its self, thus Hans
Hendrick. The Brinker surname was spilled Brungger in the German dialog and Braucker in the Swiss dialog.
Along with his father and brothers Henry may have been one of the first Brinkers recorded in the United States.
Pennsylvania Early Census Index shows Henry and each of his family living in PhiladelphiaTwsp.PhiladelphiaCounty in 1735 but, we do not know the date
the census was enumerated. We do know he arrived there June 28, 1735.
No records that I have found
show evidence of the exact location were Henry and his family lived in Philadelphia,
but as we seen in the story of his father all indication are that this family temporarily lived in Germantown, on the northwest
side of Philadelphia, until moving to Bucks County, Pa.
On March 5, 1739 Henry’s
father, Andreas, received a land warrant for fifty acres located in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, about
51 miles north of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
It was here that Henry lived and helped his father
clear land and build a home and farm until he was twenty-one years old.
Begining His Family
Click to Enlarge
exact date is unknown but, in the early part of 1744, some time before June 15, at the age of 21 Henry left home and headed
southwest. We find record of him again in Stouchsberg, Berks Co. Pa, about 71 miles west of his father’s home,
about a one or two day journey by horse.
reason for leaving home is only a speculation of this author but, in studying his movement we find that Jost Hite had acquired
several thousand acres of land in FrederickCo.Virginia and according
to his contract he had to settle one family for every thousand acres with-in a given time. At the time of Henry’s journey
Jost Hite was persuading many German families in Pennsylvania to move to Frederick Co. Virginia. It is also known that Henry and his brother Conrad both left home in the same year. It
is unknown whether they left together or not but, they both settled in Virginia with-in that same year.
stopping in Stouchsburg they give a good indication that they were on the road to Virginia, because Strouchsburg is on modern day
U.S. Hwy 22, a direct route from Bucks Co. Penn. to Frederick Co. Va.
Click to Enlarge
We can verify this stop by a record showing that on June
15, 1744 Henry Brinker (Sadler) married Anna Catherine Kreutzberger at Christ Lutheran Church in Stouchsburg, Berks
(Source: "Berks Co. PA Marriages, 1730-1800, Vol. 2", 1987, Edited
by Frederick Paul & Jeffrey J. Howell. Page 1, Henry Brenker, sadler, and Anna Catharina
Kreutzberger. Marr. 15 June 1744, Christ Luth. Ch., Stouchsburg in Marion Twp.,
Berks Co., PA)
The original church, built in 1743 just before Henry left home, still stands today, though it
had some remodeling in the late 1800s.
Catherine was born Jan. 6, 1725 in Klarenthal, Saarbrucken, Saarland, Germanythe
daughter of Wendel
In the book Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants - A History of Frederick County, Virginia the writer
states; "This family has been associated with the southern
part of Frederick for many years, and was regarded as having first settled in that section.
This is a mistake. Henry Brinker the pioneer, first lived in the village of Winchester prior
to 1750, and died on his farm N. E. of Winchester in 1772"
above illustration is the authors’ attempt to show the information found on an early map of WinchesterVillage, or at that time called Frederick Town, which can not be legally copied. According to Cartmill’s statement this
is where Henry and Catherine lived in their earlier years in FrederickCounty.
This area of FrederickCounty was first known as Opequon or Shawneetown because of an earlier Shawnee Indian camp
on the site, then as Frederick's Town. Winchester was finally named Winchester by James
Wood, first Clerk of Frederick County and according to tradition, it was named after Wood's English birthplace.
The first 26 lots for the town were laid out by James Wood in 1743, the same year that Frederick county
began to function as a new county, but it was not until eight years later, in 1752, that the town of Winchester was chartered
by the Virginia General Assembly.
This is just a few months before Henry
left his fathers home and during the period that Jost Hite was recruiting settlers from
Pennsylvania. This is why this author speculates that Jost Hite persuaded Henry
and Conrad to leave home.
Click to Enlarge
is a model displayed in the FortLoudonmuseum of Frederick
Town, when George Washington built Ft Loudon in 1756. According to Cartmill’s description
and Henry’s purchase of lot #7 in Frederick Town, Henry’s house would be at the very top of this picture on the
right side of the center road.
a fun note: The center road in this picture is today's Hwy 11 and part of Interstate 81.
There was originally 26 lots laid out for this town each lot sold had a restriction on it that said; the buyer
must build on the half acre lot with-in two years and the house must be either made of Squared Dovetailed logs, bricks or
stone and must be no less than 20 feet long and 16 feet wide, with a stone or brick chimney.
Click to Enlarge
Many of these are still standing today, as museums throughout the Winchester area, including this one in the
old town district. One writer says that Henry Brinker built the fourth house in the early town of Frederick Town, and
it was a German style log house like this one.
It was here in Frederick Town, Frederick Co. Va. on ____, 1745 that Henry and Catherine’s first child Mildred Brinker
was born. Her birth records would have been filed in Frederick Co. because their record keeping started two years before
One of these log buildings that still stands today is located at the corner of 32 West
Cork St. and Braddock St. in the Old Town District of Winchester.
Click to Enlarge
This was George Washington's survey office when he was surveying the area of Winchester for Lord Fairfax in 1749. It
was his military office from September 1755 until December 1756, while as Col. Washington, he was building Ft Louton.
The log section in the middle of the building was the original survey office.
This was three blocks south of Henry's house.
On the same day that Winchester became a city the court declared that each year, on the third Wednesday in
the months of June and October a two day fair would be hold. So important was this event that any person attending
the fair was exempt from being arrested, not only during the fair but, two days before and two days after allowing for travel.
The fair was a time of selling and trading. People traveled for days from other places to attend the fair. During this
fair, it was a custom that the young men were allowed to present gifts to the girl of their interest even if she had never
seen him before. This event lasted well into the 1800s.
(Source: The story of Winchester in Virginia, the
oldest town in the Shenandoah Valley, pg 50)
In 1746 Henry began building his tavern. In the book "Planting New Virginia" we find this passage:
As early as 1746 the peddler Samuel Divinny had received brandy, punch, cider, food and lodging from John Hopes,
furnishing in return various goods, such as blankets, a hat, and six yards of linen- them selves no doubt, wangled from country
people at Opequon. In other familiar cases, mason George Brown traded twenty bushels of "slime", or mortar with tavern
keeper Henry Brinker for liquor, and punch, and Brown's sometime employer Duncan O'Gillon build a "chemnee above the joyest"
for James Lemon in return for punch, beer, brandy, wine, and a room for himself and his cousin. Accepting goods of any sort
from soldiers in exchange for "entertainment" at a tavern would hardly seem unusual. And when soldiers had cash to pay, the
allure of money might have been too much for even the most scrupulous.
(Source: The planting of New Virginia page 256)
On September 29, 1746 Henry and Catherine's second child, George Madison Brinker was born. Like
his sister Mildred his records would have been filed in Frederick Co.
In 1747 we find verification of Henry's occupational trade as a young man. On his marriage record from the church
in Berks Co. we see the word (Saddler). Then on Dr. Daniel Hart's estate records, dated 1743-1747 we find a payment
to Henry Brinker for either services to or the making of his saddle.
On ____, 1748 Henry and Catherine's third child Elizabeth Brinker is born here in the old village of Frederick
Town, Frederick Co. Va.
On November 28, 1748, We find a recept from James Wood to Henry Brinker for unknown goods and services.
(Source: James Wood's Payment Orders and Bills of Exchange, 1738-1799, Box 4,
Click to Enlarge
In 1749 Lord Fairfax moved to Frederick Co. from England. Finding that James Wood had developed a town on his
property and sold lots to individuals, he accepted Wood's proposal for settlement and added an addition to the east end of
the town himself, he also placed an annual rent on all the lots that James Wood had sold even though the individuals had paid
for the lots. This infuriated the owners of the lots, and in response, they signed this petition in June 1749.
This did not stop Lord Fairfax, the lot oweners, including Henry, paid five shillings of sterling each year
until the death of Lord Fairfax's son Thomas.
(Source:Winchester, Virginia, and its beginnings, 1743-1814,
Part 1 pg 24)
Click on picture to read petition.
Click to Enlarge
On May 1, 1750 Henry purchased 381 acres of land from Lord Fairfax, that he later cleared and built
his farm on. The land was located about five miles northeast of Winchester, on the banks of the Opecquon
Creek, near the Society of Friends Hopewill Church.
(Source: Sims Index to
Land Grants in West Virginia, by West Virginia. Auditor's Office) (Source: Frederick Co Land Records Idem 88 NNC H page 306)
Click to Enlarge
The farm pictured here was located just a few miles from Henry's farm, when West Virginia split off from Virginia.
Henry's farm would have looked very much the same.
On August 15, 1750 we find a land transaction that reads "John Jones 200 acres to James Foreman (witnessed by
Thos Wood, Thos Doster, Henry Brinker, Deed BK 2, p. 170 15 Aug. 1750)".
This is the first of many Deeds and Wills that we find Henry witnessing. In searching family records we
use these to prove dates and places, but if we look at the other prominent names of witnesses and the number of records like
this that Henry signed, we will begin to see that this is the first sign of Henry, in his middle 20s, working his way
into local politics
On ____,1751 Henry and Catherine's fourth child, Henry Brinker Jr. was born. Henry Jr. was born
here in the same house but, unlike George and Elizabeth his birth place would be listed as Winchester, Frederick Co Va.
because the City of Winchester including Frederick Town was legally established and renamed in 1749.
We know he was not born on henry's farm, because
Henry had just bought the land and did not have time enough to clear it and build a house. We also know that his birth records
would have been filed in Frederick Co. because Winchester records did not start until 1790.
In a paper given to theFrederick County, Maryland Historical Society on Jan. 17, 1896, we read where Henry meets with George Washington
warning him of the approaching Indian attacks. The following is a quote from that paper:
"In 1752 the Lutherans at Frederick,
Md. commenced the building of a stone church upon a lot of ground
deeded to the congregation for a nominal consideration by Daniel
Dulaney. The foundation was dug and the walls reared to the
height of five or six feet when the regular pursuits of the
town were thrown into confusion by the French and Indian war,
which now broke out in great fury. The formerly well disposed
Indians, instigated by French money and influence, set the torch to
the homes and barns of the peaceful settlers of Frederick
county. The women and children, as a protection from the tomahawk
and scalping knife of the infuriated savages, were removed to
places of security, and instead of the plough, the men took
guns and swords into their hands. Many of the more timid abandoned
their homes and barns and sought safety by flight to distant
points. So great was the desertion on the frontier that Washington
wrote in August, 1756: "The whole settlement of Conogocheague
has fled and there remains now only two families from there
to Frederick Town.
That the Maryland settlements are abandoned is certainly
a fact, as I had the accounts transmitted to me by several hands
and confirmed yesterday, 28th, by Henry Brinker, who left Monocacy
the day before, and who affirms that 350 wagons had passed \\\dX
place within the space of three days."
First settlements of Germans in Maryland. A paper read by Edward T. Schultz before the Frederick
County Historical Society, January 17th, 1896)
I have not yet found why Henry was at Monocacy that day but, Monocacy is the
river that divids Virginia and Maryland about 50 miles or, a days journey by horse, east of Winchester. Many major trading
post were along the river; most likely he was buying supplys for his tavern.
In 1753, Hampshire County was formed from the western part of Frederick Co. and part of Augusta County,
but because of the fear of so many Indian raids it was considered unsafe and was not established until four years later in
1757. (Source: History of Hampshire Co.)
Like his father Andreas, Henry
was a devote Mennonite and a leader in his church. On May 15, 1753
we find a record that shows Henry Brinker, Philip Bush, Daniel Bush, Jacob Sowers, and Frederick Conrad,
the 5 trustees of the Reformed Calvinist Church received a deed from Lord Fairfax for lots #82 and #83 in the eastern
portion of Winchester, VA
for a meetinghouse.
Click on the Pictures below to read the history and the actual
grant and terms of the agreement.
Click to Enlarge
Click to Enlarge
According to the church's records the congregation had been meeting
for many years before this but shared buildings with the Lutheran and Quaker congregations.
(Source: Shenandoah Valley pioneers
and their descendants : a history of Frederick County, Virginia, Chapter 37, pg 195) (The story of Winchester in Virginia, the oldest town in the Shenandoah
Valley Pg 49)
On June 4, 1754 Henry was appointed overseer of the Fairfax Road by the Frederick Co. Court. The order read as
Henry Brinker is appointed overseer
of the Fairfax Road
and it is further ordered that all the Tithables in Winchester together with the
Tithables formerly appointed keep the same in repair according to Law and that the said Henry be exempted from working on
any other road during the time he is overseer
(Source: Virginia Transportation Research Council
Frederick County Order Book 1 (1743-1745)--4 June 1754, FOB 5, p. 474)
At that time the Fairfax Road
was the main road running north and south connecting Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and Tennessee. It later became
U.S. Route 11. Today sections of this road are part of Interstate 81.
Looking back to when Henry arrived in Philadelphia, being only twelve years old, he did not have to take an oath
of allegiance to the state of Pennsylvania nor, had he ever taken one to Virginia but, in 1754 this minute
appears in the Order Book of the court;
“ Henry Brinker a German Protestant, proved to the court that he had been an inhabitant of the colony seven
years and not absent two months at any time and had a certificate from Rev. John Gordon, that he had received the rites of
sacrament of the Lord’s Supper according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England “.
(Source: Cartmell’s Virginia History)
All facts to this point lead to Henry being
in Frederick Co. begining in 1744, according to this seven years before this date would make him arriving in Frederick
Co in 1747. (Looking for proof) Question: Did he stay 2 years in Berks Co when he got married, before going on to Virginia.
In early 1755 the Indian raids in the Frederick Co. area was getting so bad that Col. George Washington ordered
the construction of Ft. Loudon to start on the east end of Winchester. It was finished in 1756.
On December 11, 1755 two spots were open in the Frederick Co election for County Burgesses. The Frederick Co
voters list show that Henry voted for Col. George Washington and Capt. Thomas Swearengen.
(Source:Clark, Murtie June, Colonial Soldiers of the South, 1732-1774, Baltimore,
MD: 1983: Pp. 328-332)
In 1756 Henry Qualified Ensign in the Old Virginia Regiment. (Source:Scotch Irish
Settlement in Virginia, Vol. 2, p.505)
In April 1756 when word came of massive raids by French and Indians on Virginia's terror-struck northern frontier. Washington
gave up any thoughts of resigning his commission and instead hastened from Williamsburg to frontier Winchester to rally the
colony's forces. He soon recognized that his own troops and friendly Indians would not suffice and asked for the
help of the militia. By the time the militamen began arriving at Winchester from neighboring counties in
large numbers, the militiamen themselves had become a greater problem for Washington than the French and Indians. For the
rest of the summer and early fall Colonel Washington commanded his regiment, dealt with the disorganized and inexperienced
militia, saw to the training of the new draftees, and directed the building of a chain of forts the length of the Virginia
Saturday April. 26, 1756; In his diary George recorded a letter he had received informing him that
the Small Pox Virus had hit the Winchester area.
"Receivd Letters from Winchester informing me that the Small Pox had got among my Quarter's in Frederick; determind
therefore to leave Town as soon as possible and proceed up to them." (Source: The diaries of
George Washington Vol 1 pg 273)
Because of the smallpox epidemic in Frederick County, the county court was moved, by order of the governor 3 July
1759, to Stephensburg, "during the time the small pox rageth in the town of Winchester." Stephensburg (later Newton, later
Stephens City), founded by Lewis Stephens in 1758, was competing with Winchester to become the seat for Frederick County.
By Oct. 1759 the smallpox, according to a petition of the inhabitants of Winchester, "was raging at Stephensburg," and the
court did not meet at all until Feb. 1760 (NORRIS , 121--22). GW is here noting the court's move back to its regular seat.
August 7, 1756 Orders from Col. George Washington.
As every method hitherto practiced has been found ineffectual to restrain the paltry tippling houses and Ginn-shops
in this town [Winchester, Virginia], from selling liquor, contrary to orders, to the Soldiers, to the Detriment of His Majesty’s
Service, and irreparable loss of their own Health.
It is hereby expressly ordered, that as many men as the Tents will contain, do immediately encamp; and all the
rest, except those in the Hospital be on Monday, new quartered upon Brinker, Heath and Lemon; who are charged not to sell
more than a reasonable quantity of liquor, and at reasonable rates to each man per day; as they will answer the contrary.
And any Soldier or Draught who is found drinking in any of the other houses, or who is known to purchase, by direct
or indirect means, any liquor from other places; or who shall be found ever going into, or sitting down in any of the other
houses, without giving a sufficient excuse why he did so; shall immediately receive 50 lashes, without the benefit of a Court
And all the Officers are strictly required to see all these Orders strictly complied with…(Source:George Washington Orders, 8/7/1756, The Writings of George Washington, 1:440)
The tavern keepers who abided by Washington's orders also prospered. Washington's success at the Frederick
co. polls in 1758 was attended by the usual practice of treating the voters for the thirsty work of casting balletsvive voce.To Henry Brinker, Henry Heth, Alexander
Wodrow, and others the ambitious politician, now twenty-seven years old, turned over more than 37 pounds for rum, brandy,
punch, cider, and thirty gallons of beer.
(Source: The Planting of New Virginia page 256)
August 29, 1756; in the letter we seen above George Washington was writing to Col Fairfax requesting more soldiers
to help protect Frederick Co. In a part of this letter he mentions his meeting with Henry Brinker, who confirmed that he seen
350 wagons fleeing Maryland and Frederick Co. Va.
while on his return from Monocacy. (Source; The writings of George Washington Vol.
1 pg. 448)
Author's Notes: Monocacy was one of the main
trading post of the area, located about 51 miles from Winchester on the Monocacy River that divides Va. and Maryland.
December 7, 1757, Henry's mother Regula Herter died at the age of 62, in Lower Saucon Twsp, Northampton Co. Pa.
Source: Globally unique Identifier: DA2F9862-929B-46C2-B991-D3DDD64BDF49 Record
ID Number: MH:IF1072561
On June 24, 1758 Two spots were open in the Frederick Co. election for county Burgesses. The Frederick
Co. voters list shows Henry voted for Col. George Washington and Col. Thomas Bryan Martin.
(Source: Clark, Murtie June, Colonial Soldiers of the South, 1732-1774, Baltimore,
MD: 1983: Pp. 328-332) (Voter List 1732-1774)
From July to September 1758 Henry marched with (then) Lt. Col. George Washington to the battle of Fort Dequense
(Source: The story of Winchester in Virginia, the oldest town in the Shenandoah
Valley. pg 7, Strasburg, Va.: Shenandoah Publishing House, 1925)
1760; a book called "Virginia`s Colonial Soldiers" by Lloyd D. Bockstruck, 1988 shows both Henry and Conrad Brinker
as Colonial soldiers in 1760 & 1761, page 350-352, where they were fined for being absent.
On January 17, 1761 The Frederick Co Clerk's Fees belonging to James Wood: list shows Henry paid 80 pound
Author's Notes: The clerk's fees were muck
the same as taxes. At that time tobacco was use the same as currancy.
On May 18, 1761 Henry ran against Col. George Washington for Frederick Co. Burgess. The Frederick Co. voters
list shows the integrity of Henry and a few of our early politicians. Though running against him, Henry voted for Col.
George Washington and Washington won the election.
(Source: Clark, Murtie June, Colonial Soldiers of the South, 1732-1774, Baltimore,
MD: 1983: Pp. 328-332)
January 2, 1762, Frederick Co. Clerk's Fees belonging to James Wood: Henry Brinker 150 pounds of tobacco.
January 1763, Frederick Co. Clerk's Fees belonging to James Wood: Henry Brinker 530 pounds tobacco.
Author's Notes: Looking at the last three years
fees we can see the development of Henry's farm.
On February __, 1764 Henry's younger brother, Abraham, died in Lower Saucon Twsp. Northampton Co. Pa.
Some time between March 12, and May 12, 1764, Henry's father, Andreas died in Lower Saucon Twsp. Northampton
May 12, 1764, Henry inherited twenty pounds from his father's estate.
There is a question in my mind as to why the
differance in Henry's inheritance, Andreas's estate was valued at 250 pounds, Henry received 20 pounds, Abraham's wife received
6 pounds from the whole estate. the remainder was divided between the other three sons. That would be 74 2/3 pounds each.
Click to enlarge
On July 21, 1764, at the age of 17 years, 9 months, and 14 days. Henry signed an indenture
bounding his oldest son George to Adam Haymaker until his 21st birthday. Adam Haymaker was the inventer of
the famous Haymaker Rifle, George was bound to the gun shop on Cameron St. in Winchester, Va. In this bound
George was not allowed to sell any personal idems, go to any taverns, nor play cards or throw dice, nor go to race tracks,
nor absent himself, nor commit fornication, without his masters permission. Source: Frederick
Co. deeds book 10 1764-1765 pg 378
December 20, 1764, A summons was presented to Henry Van Meter by the Sheriff of Hampshire Co. to pay Henry
Brinker the sum of 1 pound, 16 shillings and 4 pence.
August 1, 1765 Frederick County, Virginia, Henry was witness to the land transaction between Solomon
Hedges and Rebecca his wife of Hampshire County to Thomas Hilyard of Frederick County.
(Source: Frederick County, Virginia, Deeds, Book 10, pages 483 & 485)
On ____, 1767 Henry and Catherine's Oldest daughter Mildred Brinker married Frederick Haas in Frederick Co. Va.
On _____, 1768 Henry and Catherine's first grand child Juliet Ann Haas was born.
On Nov. 7, 1768 Henry's son George married Rebecca Bowman, daughter of George Bowman and Mary Hite.
On October 17, 1769, Henry wrote his Will. It named his wife Catherine Brinker, and son-in-law Fred Hass as Executors.
Children named were daughters Mildred Hass, Elizabeth Brinker, sons Henry Brinker and George Brinker.
Author's Notes: As yet I am unable to find
a complete copy of the Will. The information above is readily available.
On ___, 1769 Henry and Catherine's youngest daughter Elizabeth Brinker married Archibald McDonald in Frederick
On ____, 1770 Henry and catherine's fourth grand child, Mary McDonald was born to Elizabeth Brinker
and Arcibald McDonald.
On Dec. 26, 1770 Henry and Catherine's second grand children, twin girls, Catherine M. Brinker and Mary
Brinker were born to George Madison Brinker and Rebecca Bowman, in Middletown, Frederick Co. Va.
August ___, 1772, Henry died, at the age of fifty, on his farm northeast of Winchester, Frederick Co. Va.
August ___, 1772, Henry's Will was proven. His wife, Catherine and son-in-law Frederick Haas were named
executors.(Source: "Abst. of Wills, Inventories & Admin. Accts. of Frederick
Co. VA 1743-1800", King, 1982, p. 31. Will of Henry Brinker, written 17 Oct. 1769, proved Aug. 1772)
Sites around henry's home
Click to enlarge
This is the roans of the Taylor Plantation located in Hampshire Co. WVa. It was the home of many generations
of Taylor's including Susanna Taylor who married Henry Brinker and Mary Taylor who married Jacob Brinker, Henry's nephews, the
sons of Conrad Brinker