Welcome to brumm.com: the Blue Phase

The images above should slide over and become visible as you move your mouse over them. Clicking on them will take the browser to that person's short synopsis below.

These are photographs of the people who are written about below. These images are cropped and resized (smaller); if you are interested in the originals, visit the genealogy site which I host here. There is much more complete information available there, as well as a lot more photographs.

(Photo 1, all numbers are counted left to right:) Caroline (Johnson) Lett, my 2nd great-grandmother, was born in Sweden on July 16, 1824. Her father's name is unknown. Her mother was Catherine "Anna" (1794-1879). Caroline married Charles H. Lett in 1849 in Sweden, and they immediately emigrated to the United States, as their first son, John A. Lett was born that year during the trip, while they were at sea. Caroline would become the mother of 9 children; two died in infancy and their names are not known. The other seven were: John A., William A., Josephine, Emma Christine, Frank H., James A., and my great-grandfather, Walter Theodore Lett.

(Photo 2:) Charles H. Lett, my 2nd great-grandfather, was born in Sweden September 5, 1819. He married Caroline Johnson in 1849, whereupon they moved to the U.S., along with Caroline's mother, Catherine "Anna" Johnson. They settled in Iowa. When the Letts were counted in the 1850 census after their arrival in the U.S., they had the name "Anderson," so it is likely that Lett was not their surname used in Sweden (Swedish surname naming conventions in the 19th century were quite different from what we use.) In 1850 they can be found in the federal census listed as living in Jefferson County, Iowa. By 1860, they were named "Lett" and had settled in Des Moines County. Charles had a farm in Huron Township by 1870. he died in Morning Sun, Iowa, in 1905.

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(Photos 2 & 3:) Walter Theodore Lett, my great-grandfather, was the youngest child in the family. He was born in 1866 and died in 1953, so I assume he met me as a baby. He married Ella Johnson, and was the father of two children, who were raised near Mediapolis, Iowa. Their daughter Bertha Leota Lett was my grandmother (she was discussed more fully on the first page of information on my direct ancestors in the paternal Brumm section). Son Charles William "Charlie" Lett was six years younger than Bertha, born in 1899. He died before his 19th birthday in 1918 from the Spanish flu epidemic. Ella died in 1930, probably of cancer. Walter had a short-lived remarriage to an unknown woman some years after Ella's death. Apparently this woman was a gold digger.

I do not know if Walter's mother and grandmother's family (Caroline and Catherine Johnson) were related to the family of his wife, Ella Matilda Johnson. As I don't have any concrete information from the time these families were in Sweden, I couldn't say for sure one way or the other. I do know a very large number of Swedish families settled near Mediapolis in the 1800s, and many of these people were related.

(Photo 3:) Walter Lett and Ella Johnson were married March 16, 1892 in Burlington, Iowa. One of the family artifacts I inherited from my father was a framed original of their very ornate marriage certificate, which is a great family treasure. The scan above of this document is small and illegible, but a much larger version of it is here

My great-grandmother, Ella Matilda Johnson, was born October 14, 1870, and died just after her sixtieth birthday on October 16, 1930. I feel very fortunate to have several photographs of her, and several more ("tintypes" even) that may have been Ella. Also on the main genealogy site here there are a few postcards exchanged between her and members of her family.

(Photo 4:) Catherine "Anna" Johnson was the mother of Caroline (Johnson) Lett. She was apparently a widow before the family moved to America in 1849, or else her husband died before the time of the 1850 federal census. Several relatives of mine have visited her grave site in Des Moines County, Iowa. Born in 1794, she lived to the ripe age of 84, which was fairly uncommon in the 19th century. She must have been a healthy woman! It is not certain that the photograph I contributed as she, the woman in the bonnet clutching her Bible, actually is Catherine. It is my best educated guess for who the woman is. I have it, and it's in reality very small, only a few inches by a few inches in size, and in a very brilliant gold frame. (Note: Catherine was my 3rd great-grandmother. if the photograph is of her, it is the only picture I have of a third great-grandparent.)

(Photo 5:) Hannah Marie Johnson, née Honson, was my second great-grandmother and the mother of Ella Matilda (Johnson) Lett. She was born July 18, 1845 in Sweden, and died Christmas season, December 17, 1915, in Kossuth, Iowa. Kossuth was a little town just outside of Mediapolis; now it is mostly remembered by a cemetery bearing its name. Hannah married Samuel Edmond Johnson (1848-1892) in 1866, before leaving Sweden. They, as the Letts, apparently immediately moved to America, where my great-grandmother, Ella, was born in 1870. There were 9 other children in the family, several of whom died very young, and several others who married but never had children.

Hannah lived in a small house in Kossuth, and after the death of a daughter-in-law, lived there with a son and grandson, whom she helped raise.

When I was a little boy, I did meet one member of Hannah and Samuel Johnson's immediate family, my great-grandaunt, Nettie Marie (Johnson) Paddock. She lived in Malden, Illinois. The memories are very distant and blurry, though I think I do remember it at all because she used kerosene lamps for light and had no electricity. This evidently seemed unique enough to me to store away for future reference.

(Photo 6) Nathaniel Fox was a second great-grandfather of mine. Other researchers and I have traced his ancestry traced back until almost before time began, but I feel fairly confident of it only as far back as about 800 A.D. Nathaniel's family had connections into the English royal family (and earlier when they were the Normans). One of his 22nd great grandfathers was William the Conqueror (who was ergo my 26th great grandfather). Continuing to name drop, the beheading of Anne Boleyn in 1536 killed one of my 11th great-grandaunts.

Nathaniel was born June 1, 1805, in King William County, Virginia. His father was Major Nathaniel Fox (1763-1825) and mother Mary Carver King (≅ 1767-1806). Nathaniel ("Jr"). married Kitturah McFarland in 1829, probably in Ohio, which is where she was born as well as their first children. They moved to Henry County, Iowa, between 1837-1839, and there he became one of the first land owners in New London Township. In 1840, he filed for ownership of land in Sections 29 and 30.

Nathaniel and Kitturah had four children by the time of the move to Iowa, and six more were born afterwards. His youngest daughter, born in 1851, was Ruth Ellen, who was my great-grandmother (she married Charles Pearsey Walker).

Kitturah died in 1877, and at some point the widower went to Nebraska where a daughter, Elizabeth McFarland (Fox) Sampson, lived. Nathaniel died in Greenwood, Nebraska, in 1887.

(Photo 7:) Though I have her husband, Nathaniel Fox's ancestral line traced back the furthest of any in my database, I know very little about his wife, Kitturah's family, not even her parents' names. I made a potential connection to another McFarland family a number of years back, another researcher from that family agreed we had a likely match, but there was no way we could find to really prove it.

Kitturah McFarland was born in 1812 in Ohio, and died, as previously mentioned, in 1877 in Henry County, Iowa. She is buried at the Burge Cemetery, near New London. She was the mother of James M., John McFarland, William H., Elizabeth McFarland, Sarah Ann, Delilah T., Charles McC., Thomas, Maria R. and Ruth Ellen Fox. Kitturah bears a fair likeness to a great aunt of mine, Flossie (Walker) Russell. I feel like I know Kitturah a bit better than most of my 19th century ancestors, as several letters exist that she sent to her daughter, Elizabeth Sampson, and reading these gives me a sense of what she may have been like as a person. Once I thought people born in 1812 were ancient, genealogy has helped me understand how really very close generations are, and makes time expanses seem a lot less.

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(Photo 8:) Samuel Nelson Moyers and his wife, Lucinda Hopkins (Deen) Moyers, were (also) 2nd great-grandparents. Sam was born near Carrollton, Illinois, in 1827 to Jacob Moyers (1797-1863) and Sarah Walker (Rogers) Moyers (1802-1867). He was the fourth of nine children. His father was a native of Pennsylvania, and his mother of Kentucky. A large group of Moyers families apparently came out of Pennsylvania and settled near Cincinnati, Ohio in the early 19th century. I am a descendant of that group. Their exact origin is unknown, for the name Moyers does not exist in Europe. It seems to be a variant on Meyers, as many spellings more closely approximating that crop up in official records. An older cousin of mine remarked that the family in the earlier part of the 20th century still pronounced the name as if it were Meyers

(The connection to "Star Trek," mentioned in my "tagline" on the first page in this family history, comes via descendants of Jacob and Sarah's daughter, Susannah "Jane" (Moyers) Rexroat.)

Jacob Moyers moved to Greene County, Illinois, from Ohio by 1830, although I don't really know exactly when, or if he was alone or with other family. He moved much of his own family north into Iowa by 1840, where they settled in Des Moines County. Sam, age 3 at the time, was essentially raised in Iowa. He married Lucy Deen in 1846, and they were the parents of four children: Marietta "Margarett" was the oldest, who died at age fourteen. My great-grandfather, George Moyers was next, followed by Sarah Elizabeth and Jacob Nelson Moyers. Sam lived to age 92, dying in 1920 (some of the family is quite long-lived: his son Jacob died in 1951 a few weeks before his 99th birthday).

The Moyers were Methodists, and though Sam and Lucy had only four children, three into adulthood, their children were quite prolific. A photograph from their 50th wedding anniversary (below) shows a mighty glob of extended family humanity, including many in the picture whom I really would love to identify but likely never will. (Thankfully a fair number of the attendees are identifiable.)

Lucinda Hopkins "Lucy" Deen was born June 15, 1823 in Lewis County, Virginia (later to be part of West Virginia). Her parents were Jacob D. Deen (1799-1866) and Judith "Judy" Cox (1797-1888). Lucy was the second child of seven in the family. The Deens moved in November 1844 from Virginia to Iowa, and many of the descendants of this family still reside there today. The family name is alternatively spelled "Dean" and "Deen," and apparently this is not just a spelling error passed on from the 19th century, but was intentionally differentiated.

Lucy and Sam celebrated a 60th wedding anniversary in 1906; she died 3 years later in 1909. The photograph below is from 1896, their 50th anniversary:

A scene from the 50th Wedding anniversary of Sam and Lucy Moyers in 1896.

The 50th wedding anniversary of Sam and Lucy Moyers, 1896. The photo is larger which furnishes much better resolution on the main genealogy site; an additional photograph with a different configuration of the attendees at the event is also there.

(Photo 9:) George Washington Earl Moyers was my great-grandfather, and the oldest son of Sam and Lucy (Deen) Moyers. He was born on April 12, 1849 in Sperry (Des Moines County), Iowa. At age 20 he married Rebecca Ellen Pence, who was two years and two days older than he. Immediately after their marriage they lived near Burlington (Iowa), but as their family grew, they made a move to Kansas (Edwards County and Marion County), about 1880, where they remained for several years until home called them and they returned to Iowa and settled in Louisa County. In 1885 a daughter died and was buried in Iowa, so they had returned from Kansas before that unfortunate family event occurred. George and Rebecca were parents of ten children. My grandmother, Hattie Mae "Harriett" Moyers, was the fourth child born in the family, in 1876.

After Rebecca's death 1919, George remarried Mary (Smith) Rogers in 1920, at the same time his son, Edward Nelson Moyers, was married. Mary apparently died soon thereafter, and is not ever mentioned in the family history. George died in 1926 at the home of a widowed daughter in Burlington.

Rebecca Ellen (Pence) Moyers, my great-grandmother, was born in Virginia in 1847, the third daughter (and child) of Jonathan S. Pence and Mary "Polly" Tutwiler. Polly died the year after Rebecca's birth and her father remarried (Elizabeth Shoemaker). He died of exposure in 1865 during the Civil War in Alexandria, Virginia. In 1866, Rebecca and her sister, Mary V. (Pence) Dean, whose husband happened to be a relative of Lucinda Hopkins (Deen) Moyers, moved to Iowa. Rebecca settled in Southeast Iowa, Mary and Martin in Northwest Iowa.

Several photos of Rebecca exist, and I have a couple of them in the artifacts I inherited as my parents died. Though not an uncommon occurrence in the realm of genetics, her face has a sense of familiarity to it, reminding me of other family members I knew as I grew up.

Page 1 Bios: Paternal Brumm and Maternal Walker Ancestors

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    The History of www.brumm.com

    The latest incarnation/redesign of the www.brumm.com web site was begun in September 2010.

    It was a surprise to me that I even have attempted this. After some rather dire health concerns and major surgery in 2008, I haven't felt like attempting anything particularly time consuming and difficult, certainly not as stressful as web page design tends to become.

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    About this Page

    (Part of the main genealogy portal of the site)

    This portal to my genealogical research is a snippet of what can be found in the main genealogy pages at brumm.com.

    The images on the page are as follows:

    All the paternal photos of the Johnson and Lett families were in my father's collection, and I inherited them. The Moyers and Fox photographs from my maternal families were provided courtesy of my aunt, Marge Kimble.

    Other photographs of the 50th wedding anniversary of Sam and Lucinda Moyers were provided by Kathy Begey, but the one on this page was in the collection of Marge Kimble.

  • My Short Biography
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    Dennis W. Brumm

    Height: I once was 6' 4½", but in the past years I've shrunk about an inch. When I was very young and silly, I wanted to be over 7 feet tall.

    Shoe size: 13, though, since the Chinese have begun to make all our shoes, it seems to have increased to 14, at least sometimes. Some maternal cousins have upwards of 15 and 16.

    Weight: Recently shrinking. If I write a rant on the American diet (and its sub-cults) sometime, I will explain what I've been up to.

    Colors: Blue eyes, but sometimes bloodshot while designing web pages. Hair, grayer than ever, originally blondish, then brownish.

    Family: My parents are both dead (my mother since 1967, my father in 1986). No siblings, so I'm an "orphan" these last 25 years.

    Friends: I have many, and many good ones.

    First memory: Apparently before age one. My mother had a bout will Bell's palsy shortly after I was born, and I remember seeing her face a bit "contorted." When I mentioned this once to my father, he informed me I couldn't possibly remember that, as I was too young. But, despite his naysaying attitude, I do. I remember bits and pieces of a 3rd birthday party, when my Uncle Paul brought me a used toy tractor to ride (like a tricycle) on the sidewalk. He'd taken off the rust and painted it, and fixed it up nicely. Many other very youthful memories.

    Last memory: Typing the word "memories" in the above paragraph.

    Where I've lived: New London, Iowa, until age 18, then Ames, Iowa, until age 25. and finally San Francisco, California, since then (1978). I've lived in the same apartment in San Francisco since 1980.

    Travel: I had a touch of the travel bug when I was in my 20s. I went to Europe twice. I haven't been on an airplane since 1990, so I guess the bug was exterminated. Nowadays I am not the biggest fan of the airline industry. Global warming and all...

    Health: I was a sick kid, getting a lot of colds, ear infections, as well as the usual childhood diseases. I missed a lot of school some years. By the time I was a teenager, this improved greatly, and I rarely get sick now. However, as I have survived 2 aortic dissections (see the "Bad News" Section), and since I have a titanium aortic valve and some plastic arteries, I wouldn't say I'm the healthiest human on the planet.

    Hobbies: I spend a lot of time on my computer. It shows. I began an interest in genealogy in about 2000. It meshed nicely with the computer interest. I studied piano as a kid and some in college and have a great interest in music. Composed some for awhile, and was obsessed with making video once upon a time. I have one cat left (there were three just a few years ago); he is not a hobby but my good friend.

    Other interests: I have an interest in where culture is going, and why. Additionally I have dabbled lately in evolutionary psychology, but I am not "adept" in knowledge of it.

    Education: New London (Iowa) High School, graduated in 1970. Attended Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. No degree, all sorts of things happened during that period (see the gay liberation section of "Schools.")

    Work: I have been on disability since May 1998 from the aforementioned aortic condition. Not working has kept me alive. I previously held a number of interesting jobs, ranging from janitor to chemical technician to the middle manager boss of ten folks in the accounting department of a produce company. I didn't expect or really want an early retirement, but thus crumbled the cookie. We can't always get or have what we want, even if your spiritual advisor tries to convince you otherwise.

    Irritations: These change periodically. Presently they are cell phones in public (disruption of the commons), cell phones regardless of location (to some extent all digital addictive media, though I am an addict as well). I get pretty angry sometimes at the entitlement felt/exhibited by those who push baby carriages on local sidewalks and stores (baby carriages are the SUVs of the sidewalk). Often I get irritated by those who accept unfounded myth in the face of all evidence, and the rationalizations they make in the supposed reasoning of their beliefs. However, I have come to believe this latter trait is probably a natural human phenomena, evolved as such, and try to just let my irritation go about it whenever possible. I can still feel some astonishment without the irritation and get along better with the world.

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