Section 7 – The Brasington Family

Written by Sandy Kinter, from Waterford Genealogical Society E-Newsletter Volume 18 Number 9

Many of the people who owned land in Section 7 were reported in other Sections:

  1. L.L. Dewey or Levi Dewey, Section 19
  2. Frederick Bradley, Waterford Village
  3. A.G. Noble or Asahel Green Noble, Section 16
  4. S. Elwood or Solomon Clark Elwood, Section 18
  5. C. Wager or Charles Wager, Section 18

Unknown is L.L.R., 20 acres in the northwest corner of the section and P.H., 15 acres, east of L.L.R.’s property.

P.H. could possibly be Phineas Huntoon since he owned land not too far away on the other side of Maceday Lake, in Section 5.

Section 7 is now mostly part of the Pontiac Lake State Recreation Area. A shooting range is now in the northwest corner, surrounded by the state recreation area. The property once owned by Frederick Bradley now contains private homes and there are homes on the western shore of Maceday Lake. The Bradley family home is still standing on Williams Lake Road.

The Brasington Family

The 1872 Waterford Township plat map shows the farms of the Brasington families make up most of the land on the north side of Gale Road, from the border with White Lake Township, east to the intersection with Williams Lake Road. With the exception of a small corner at Gale and Williams Lake Roads, all of this property is now part of the Pontiac Lake State Recreation Area.

The census taker first reports Julia Brasington, age 64, born in New York. She is the sole inhabitant of the household. Next is Rufus Brasington, age 36, born in New York; Minerva, age 29, born in Michigan; and children, William age 9, and Ada, age 7, both born in Michigan. This family is followed by the third Brasington household, S. Brasington, age 39, born in New York; Mary M., age 37, born in Michigan; and children, Ida J. age 13, Maria A., age 11, Caroline P. age 10, Amelia A, age 10, Ferdinand, age 8, Cora L. age 5, Elmer, age 3, Melvin, age 2, and Almeron, age 1/12 (born April), all born in Michigan. Last was James H. Wiggins, age 20, farm laborer, born in Michigan.

Tunis Brasington, of Niagara County, New York was purchasing land in Section 7, with a land patent dated 5 May 1837. (2) He acquired a second property in Section 7 on 14 August 1837. (2)

The Find A Grave entry for Tunis says he was born in 1806, but there is no headstone picture to show this. (3) In the 1850 census, Tunis is age 44, and in 1860, he is age 52. (4)(5) Tunis Brasington was the son of Samuel Brasington of Niagara County, New York. (6) His mother is unknown. About 1829, Tunis married Julia Glass, probably in Niagara County since Tunis and family appear in the 1830 census from that county. (1)(7) Tunis Brasington died 20 April 1865 (8) and is buried in the Waterford Center Cemetery, Waterford Township, Oakland County, Michigan. (3)

The Find A Grave entry for Julia Brasington says she was born in 1800. But, like the entry for Tunis, there is no headstone picture to back up this claim. In the 1850 census Julia is age 54 and in 1860 she is 64, (4)(5) so perhaps a birthdate of about 1806 would be more appropriate. Her parents are unknown. In most censuses Julia is reported to have been born in New York. But in the 1860 census she is born in Vermont (5), and an unsourced family tree said Julia was from Wells, Rutland County, Vermont. A very good candidate for the father of Julia Glass is Rufus Glass Jr., found in Wells, Rutland County. He moved to LeRoy, Genesee County, New York, and, in 1820, had one female age 10-16, who could be Julia. Rufus had sons named Seymour, and Rufus F., both names used by the Brasington family. In a Montcalm County, Michigan county history, Rufus Brasington is said to have been born in LeRoy, New York. (1) Julia’s Find A Grave entry says she died 10 December 1870. There was no headstone picture to prove this date, nor were any other sources for a death date found in online research.

The second Brasington family recorded in the 1870 census was that of Rufus Brasington and his wife, Minerva. Rufus was born 21 May 1834, in LeRoy, Genesee County, New York. (1)(10) He moved to Waterford Township Oakland County, Michigan with his parents. Rufus married Minerva Dewey, 16 June 1859, in Waterford Township. (11) Rufus would reside the rest of his life on the farm founded by his father. He died 27 December 1915, in Waterford Township, and is buried in the Waterford Center Cemetery. (3)(10) Minerva A. Dewey, wife of Rufus Brasington, was the daughter of Levi Dewey and Amanda Brace, born 10 November 1840, in Pontiac Township, Oakland County, Michigan. (12)(13) She died 11 February 1927, in Edmore, Montcalm County, Michigan. (12) Minerva is buried with her husband in the Waterford Center Cemetery, Waterford Township, Oakland County, Michigan. (3) The family of Levi Dewey and Amanda Brace
was reported on in Section 19. Seymour G. Brasington and his wife, Mary Marinda, are the third Brasington family in the 1870 census. He was born 7 April 1831 in New York, the eldest son of Tunis and Julia (Glass) Brasington. (14) Seymour married the widowed Mary Marinda (Proctor) Wiggins, date and place unknown. During the Civil War, Seymour served in Company M, 5th Michigan Cavalry and received a pension for his service. (18) After the 1880 census, Seymour and Mary moved to Gilmore Township, Isabella County, Michigan. A probable brother of Julia (Glass) Brasington, Rufus F. Glass, also resided in Gilmore Township. Seymore died 18 January 1913, in Isabella County, Michigan. (14)(15) He is buried in the Gilmore Township Cemetery, Isabella County.

Mary Marinda Proctor was born 16 March 1832, in Oakland County, Michigan. (20) Her death certificate says her father was James Proctor. (20) The marriage to Seymour Brasington was Mary’s second marriage. Her first husband was William Wiggins, marriage date and place unknown. (16) The James H. Wiggins, who is recorded with the Brasington family in the 1870 census, is Mary’s son by her first husband. (17) Mary died 20 April 1915, in Mt. Pleasant, Isabella County, Michigan and she is buried with Seymour in the Gilmore Township Cemetery. (19)(20)(21)


  1. History of Montcalm County, Michigan, Volume II, John W. Daset, B.F. Bowen & Company,
    Indianapolis, IN, 1916, page 125, Hathitrust Digital Library,
  2. General Land Office Records, 1776-2015, Tunis Brasington, Certificates #19935 and
    23330, Ancestry,
  3. Waterford Center Cemetery, Waterford Township, Oakland County, Michigan,
    Find A Grave,
  4. 1850 Census, page 121, Waterford Township, Oakland County, Michigan
  5. 1860 Census, page 391, Waterford Township, Oakland County, Michigan
  6. Niagara County, New York, Probate Records, 1835-1970, Box B1, Images 783-784,
    #0911514, FamilySearch,
  7. 1830 Census, page 323, Town of Porter, Niagara County, New York
  8. Oakland County, Michigan, Probate Records, Volumes 36-37, 1863-1875; Volume 37,
    1865-1866, pages 121-122, Images 400-401, #0983917, FamilySearch,
  9. 1820 Census, page 155, Town of LeRoy, Genesee County, New York
  10. Michigan, Death Records, 1867-1952; Midland-Oakland, 1915, Rufus Brasington,
    Certificate #304, Ancestry,
  11. Oakland County, Michigan, Record of Marriages, Volumes D-G, 1849-1876; Volume F,
    1859-1866, page 34, Image 533, #0973980, FamilySearch,
  12. Michigan, Death Records, 1867-1952; Montcalm County, 1921-1928, Minerva A.
    Brasington, # 59 1929, Indexed as Minerva A. Bessington, Ancestry,
  13. Life of George Dewey, Rear Admiral U.S.N. and Dewey Family History, Dewey Publishing
    Company, Westfield, MA, 1898, page 530, Ancestry,
  14. Michigan, Death Records, 1867-1952, Iron-Kent, 1913, Seymour G. Brasington,
    Certificate #11, Ancestry,
  15. Obituary, S. Brasington, Isabella County Enterprise, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, Friday,
    24 January 1913, page 9, Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University,
  16. 1850 Census, page 55, Clinton Township, Macomb County, Michigan
  17. Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953, James H. Wiggins, Death Certificate #5062, Historical Records,
  18. Civil War Pension Index: General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934, Ancestry,
  19. Gilmore Township Cemetery, Isabella County, Michigan, Find A Grave,
  20. Michigan, Death Records, 1867-1952; Ionia-Kalamazoo, 1915, Mary M. Brasington,
    Certificate #29, Ancestry,
  21. Obituary, Mary Brasington, Isabella County Enterprise, Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, Friday,
    23 April 1915, page 4, Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University,