Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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BROOKS, David, soldier, born in 1756; died in Dutchess County, New York, 30 August, 1838. He joined the army in 1776, as lieutenant in the Pennsylvania line, was captured at Fort Washington, 16 November, 1776, and remained a prisoner two years. When exchanged, he was made assistant clothier-general, in which responsible position he became a friend of General Washington. After the war he settled in New York City, and later in Dutchess County, representing both places in the legislature, where he served six years. From May till July, 1797, he was a representative in congress, and afterward commissioner for making a treaty with the Seneca Indians, which was signed on the site of the present City of Utica. He was for sixteen years first judge of Dutchess County, and at the time of his death an officer of the customs.--His son, James Gordon, author, born in Claverack, New York, 3 September, 1801; died in Albany, New York, 20 February, 1841, was graduated at Union in 1819, and studied law in Poughkeepsie, but was never in active practice. While there he published, under the signature of " Florio," a few poems that attracted much attention. Removing to New York City, in 1823, Mr. Brooks became the literary editor of the "Minerva," and in 1825 established the "Literary Gazette," which, after a few months, was united with the "Athenaeum." He was connected with this paper about two years, and then with the "Morning Courier" for about the same period. In all these journals he published poems, which were much admired. In 1828 Mr. Brooks married Miss Mary Elizabeth Aiken, who had written many Poems over the signature of "Norna." They published, together, a volume entitled "The Rivals of Este, and other Poems" (New York, 1829), the piece that gave the book its title being by Mrs. Brooks. Among Mr. Brooks' contributions to this volume was a poem on " Genius," delivered before the Yale Phi Beta Kappa society in 1827. In 1830 Mr. and Mrs. Brooks removed to Winchester, Virginia, where the former edited a newspaper, in 1838 to Rochester, New York, and afterward to Albany. Mrs. Brooks, in addition to her talent as a writer, was a skilful designer. The plates in the "Natural History of the State of New York," by her brother-in-law, Mr. James Hall, are from drawings made by her from nature.
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