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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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HON. CHARLES BRODHEAD. During the many years in which this gentleman has been a resident of Bethlehem, he has not only witnessed its progress from a comparatively unimportant town to its proud position as one of the foremost cities of this part of Pennsylvania, but he has also aided in its development, and his history is closely interwoven with that of Northampton County. His life has been a busy and useful one. Realizing that the aim of life is not merely to “kill time,” he has rightly valued every moment given him, and has thus gained a reputation for promptness in originating plans and dispatch in executing them. The ancestry and life record of one so prominent among his fellow-men will possess for our readers more than ordinary interest, and it is therefore with pleasure that the biographer presents the following outline of his career.

There are few families in the United States whose residence here antedates that of the Brodhead family. Its first representative in America, Daniel Brodhead, came to this country as a Captain of Grenadiers in the expedition of Col. Richard Nicolls (in the reign of Charles II., King of England), which captured New York from the Dutch in 1664. With New York (then New Amsterdam) were surrendered all the Dutch Dependencies, as they were called, on the Hudson River, including Esopus, Schenectady and Ft. Orange (Albany). Capt, Daniel Brodhead was assigned, with his company of grenadiers, to keep in order the Dutch at Esopus (then called “the Esopes”), and was obliged to oversee movements on both sides of Esopus Creek, which enters the Hudson River at that point. His title was that of Captain-General of the Esopes.

Prior to leaving England, Captain Brodhead married Ann Tye, by whom he had several children, among them three sons, Daniel, Charles and Richard. Charles was evidently named in honor of the King of England, and Richard was the namesake of the Colonel of the expedition. These names continue in the family to the present. The Captain appears to have made his headquarters at Marbletown, a village a few miles west of the Hudson, where he dispensed, with iron hand, justice and equity to his Dutch neighbors, and where he died July 14, 1667. His widow survived him, and in 1697 built a residence for herself and family, which remained in possession of some member of the Brodhead family until 1890.

By reason of the long retention of this house, and the business qualities of Mrs. Ann (Tye) Brodhead and her children, a large number of papers relative to the family were kept there intact, and were secured a few years ago by Lucas Brodhead, of Spring Station, Ky., who has had many of them copied and photographed for distribution among the family. Among others was the following pass, given by the town authorities of Marbletown, Ulster County, N. Y., to Daniel Brodhead, a grandson of the Grenadier Captain, and no doubt the first Brodhead to visit the state of Pennsylvania: “Ulster, in the Province of New York. “Mattys Jansen, Maj. Johannes Hardenbergh and Capt. John Rutsen, Esqrs., Justices of the Peace for the county of Ulster, assigned,

“To all to whom these presents shall come, or may concern, greeting: Whereas, Daniel Brodhead, son of Capt. Charles Brodhead, hath a purpose to Travell out of this Province of New York into the Provinces of New Jersey and Pensilvaina: These are to certifie that the said Daniel Brodhead hath been known unto us from the time of his nativity to this day, and during all the sd time hath behaved himselfe as a True and Faithfull subject to our Soveraigne Lord King George and his predecesors, and is of honest and good fame, name, credit and Reputation, and we desire he maybe greeted according.

“Given under our hands and seales in Kingston, this 12th day of September, in the fifth yeare of his Majesty’s Reign, anno q Dono, 1718.
(Signed) “Mattys Jansen.
“J. Hardenbergh.
“John Rutsen.”

This Daniel Brodhead, however, did not settle in Pennsylvania, but made such a favorable report of the capabilities of the state, that his cousin, Daniel Brodhead, son of Richard Brodhead (a brother of Capt. Charles Brodhead before mentioned), came to Pennsylvania about 1735, and settled on what has since been called Brodhead’s Creek, near Stroudsburg, then Bucks, now Monroe County. Mr. Brodhead laid out a town on his mile square of land and called it Dansbury. The Stroudsburg station of the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad Company is on this tract, and the town is called East Stroudsburg. From this pioneer are descended the Brodheads of Pennsylvania. One of his sons, Daniel Brodhead, was Colonel of the Eighth Pennsylvania Regiment on Continental Establishment during the Revolutionary War, and at the close thereof, while Colonel commanding the Western Department, with headquarters at Pittsburg, by special act of General Washington, and on the re-organization of the Pennsylvania troops about 1782, was made Colonel of the First Pennsylvania Regiment on Continental Establishment. He filled several state offices, and when the new state organization was formed in 1789, became the first Surveyor-General of the state, which office he held for many years. He died at Milford, Pike County, in 1809. Another son, Garret Brodhead, was also an officer during the Revolution. He was the great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch.

Charles Brodhead was born at Conyngham, Luzerne County, Pa., August 4, 1824, being a son of Albert Sallatin and Ellen (Middagh) Brodhead. His father, a merchant of Conyngham, was for several terms a member of the State Legislature from Luzerne County, but in 1839 purchased and moved to the old Brodhead homestead at Delaware, Pike County. The schools of the village in which our subject was born, and where he resided until fourteen, were very deficient in educational facilities, and hence, during the winter of 1838-39, he was sent to the academical school at Stroudsburg, kept by Ira Burrell Newman. In the spring of 1840 he followed Mr. Newman to a newly established boarding school at Dingman’s High Falls, in Pike County, Pa. In November, 1840, he left the Pike County school and entered Lafayette College, at Easton, then under the administration of Rev. Dr. George Junkiman, entering the Freshman class. From that institution he was graduated in 1844, during the presidency of Rev. Dr. John W. Yeomans. Immediately after his graduation he entered the law office of his uncle, Richard Brodhead, then Member of Congress from the Tenth Legion (as the district was then called) and subsequently United States Senator from Pennsylvania.

During his student days Mr. Brodhead attended the law school established in Philadelphia by that eminent lawyer, David Hoffman, the author of “Course of Legal Study,” “Legal Outlines,” and other works of merit. Mr. Brodhead was admitted to the Bar at Easton in the November term of 1846. Shortly subsequent to his admission he acted as Sheriff’s Attorney for three years, but shortly thereafter gave up the practice of law and went into the real-estate business at Bethlehem.

About that time two railroads were in process of construction to Bethlehem: the Lehigh Valley, in connection with the Central Railroad of New Jersey, from New York; and the North Pennsylvania Railroad from Philadelphia. Both roads had their lines located on the south side of the Lehigh River at Bethlehem, and Mr. Brodhead in 1854 purchased one hundred acres of the Moravian farm lands on that side of the river, and laid out what is now to a great extent the borough of South Bethlehem. The population of this place is now about twelve thousand, and he is one of its large land-owners. He is also the owner of valuable realty in Bethlehem, where among his other possessions he owns the famous Sun Inn, built by the Moravian Congregation in 1758.

Upon laying out South Bethlehem, the first move of Mr. Brodhead was to get a Government foundry established in that place. He secured the recommendation of the Secretary of War, Jefferson Davis, to Congress for the erection of Government foundries, and through the efforts of Hon. Richard Brodhead, then United States Senator from Pennsylvania, also procured a report from the committee of the United States Senate in favor of erecting one at Bethlehem; but when the report came in the Senate, every Senator, of course, wanted the foundry in his state, every Member of Congress wanted it in his “deestrick,” and the result was no Government foundry for anybody; but, nevertheless, the leaven worked, and to-day extensive works for the manufacture of war material for the Government are in very successful operation upon the very ground reserved by Mr. Brodhead for the Government foundry in 1856, and which he subsequently sold to the Bethlehem Iron Company.

Mr. Brodhead was early and earnest in his efforts to secure manufacturing establishments at Bethlehem, and it was mainly due to his active co-operation in the projects of Augustus Wolle that the Bethlehem Iron Company’s works were located in South Bethlehem. The facts are briefly these: Mr. Wolle was, and continued to be all his life, one of the most active and progressive men that was ever in business in the Bethlehems, and his particular talent was that of an executive officer. He had leased what was known as the Gangewer Ore Bed, in Saucon Township, and secured a charter for an organization called the Saucona Iron Company, for the development of the Gangewer and other veins of hematite ores. He urged Mr. Brodhead to join him in this project, but the latter suggested that they unite forces and put up works in South Bethlehem, for the extra cost of ore transportation would be quite compensated for by the less cost of transportation of coal, if stopped at Bethlehem. The result was that Mr. Wolle, being himself a large land owner in South Bethlehem, agreed upon that place as the site for the new works. Mr. Brodhead then and there drew up a supplement to Mr. Wolle’s Saucona charter, which was subsequently passed by the Pennsylvania Legislature, authorizing the company to make and manufacture iron ores and iron into any shape or condition, and changing the’name of the company to “The Bethlehem Rolling Mill and Iron Company.” Mr. Wolle was the first and largest subscriber to the stock, and was followed by Messrs. Brodhead, Daniel, Rauch, the Moravian congregation, and others. Thus the Bethlehem Mills became an accomplished fact.

Mr. Brodhead was the first to suggest the construction of the New Street bridge, which, starting in Bethlehem, in Northampton County, crosses the canal and railroad of the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company, the Monocacy Creek, a section of Lehigh County, the Lehigh River, many tracks of the Lehigh Valley Railroad, and after a stretch of eleven hundred feet, terminates in South Bethlehem. The Broad Street bridge, which connects Bethlehem with West Bethlehem, was also one of Mr. Brodhead’s conceptions, the idea having first come to him when he was having his engineers locate what was popularly known as “Charley Brodhead’s Huckleberry Railroad,” now the Lehigh & Lackawanna Railroad, leading from Bethlehem to the great slate quarries in and about Chapman, Wind Gap, Pen Argyl and Bangor, with a branch leading through the famous Wind Gap of the Blue Mountains, and extending to Saylor’s Lake in Monroe County. The objective point of the road is Stroudsburg, on the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad, a connection with which will make it the shortest rail line for summer tourists from Philadelphia to the resorts at Delaware Water Gap, Stroudsburg, the Pocono Mountains, Bushkill, Dingman’s High Falls and Milford, on the Upper Delaware. This road was projected by Mr. Brodhead, and pushed through by him with untiring perseverance and pertinacity. He was for many years its President. It is now one of the leased lines of the Central Railroad of New Jersey.

In 1873 Mr. Brodhead was elected a member of the constitutional convention of Pennsylvania and was the originator of several valuable provisions in that instrument, notably the one providing for free telegraph lines, and prohibiting the consolidation of parallel or competing lines, by reason of which the people of the state were protected from the thraldom of a monster monopoly. He also secured the enactment of the section which prohibits all officers and employes of railroad companies from being interested, directly or indirectly, in the furnishing of supplies and material for the corporations with which they are connected, or being interested in transportation lines or contracts for transportation, which provisions have been very beneficial to stockholders, who theretofore were often plundered by unscrupulous officers and employes. He likewise introduced and secured the adoption of the section which extended the terms of County Treasurer to three years, and prohibited their re-election, which has had a very salutary effect upon municipal financiering. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Lehigh University, and has ever manifested a warm interest in educational affairs. His marriage, June 1, 1858, united him with Miss Camilla M., daughter of Gen. Conrad Shimer, an extensive farmer, and prominent in the military and political affairs of Northampton County.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the book, Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company. 

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