Daniel W. Brown
was born on 31 October 1838.2
He was the son of Samuel Ulrich Brown
and Frances "Fanny" Hoover
D. W. Brown and Susan F. Peebler were married in Jefferson County, Iowa, on 19 Nov.1857.3
A 1966 newspaper clipping relates that he left for California on the day of his wedding to take part in the Gold Rush in California.
"Mrs. Russell Simmons, 406 E. Washington, has record of a wedding that took place in the parlor at the old hotel [Leggett Hotel, being razed in 1966] back in the days of the Gold Rush. Her maternal grandmother, Augusta Wayner [probably Wagner], had an older sister, Susan. Their maiden name was Peebler. At the age of 16, Susan was married to a young man in the Parlor of the original inn erected at that location. It was the Clay House operated by William Williams. It became the Leggett House when it was purchased in 1855 by Richard C. Leggett. It has been the Leggett Hotel since, a period of well over a century.
"The wedding took place early in the day. After the ceremony the wedding party drove to the home of the bride's parents one mile east and 2-1/2 miles south of Batavia where a dinner was held. That afternoon the young bridegroom, with a few other men, left by horseback for California to take part in the Gold Rush. The young bride climbed to the attic in the farm home and waved a dish towel from the window as long as she could see her new husband riding away over the prairie.
"After spending some time in California, he started back to Iowa with a group of 24 men. In the mountains of Colorado they experienced a violent rain and wind storm. They pitched their big tent early as the black clouds rolled in. They placed their gear around the edge of the tent and tucked the canvas under it. As they huddled together in the center of the tent to keep dry, lightning struck the pole and killed several men, the young groom included. Months later one of the survivors located Susan and informed her of her husband's death.
"A few years later she was married to Michael [sic] Springer in the same parlor in the same hotel building. They moved to Leon, Iowa, where their descendants still reside. While a young girl residing in Jefferson County, nearby Indians called her 'Sukey Blueskin Cracker'. No one could guess where they got "Cracker" since it in no way resembled Peebler. However, the name stuck with her all her life."4
This story is not quite in agreement with our family’s version of this incident. He was killed by lightning in the mountains of Colorado on his return trip some time later. It may be that the departure and return described above are for two different trips, since the family of Daniel W. and Susan Brown, with a son Ellis, age 1, is listed in the 1860 census of Jefferson County, Iowa. He is probably the “Elbo?” Brown, son of D. W. and S. R [sic] Brown, died 14 July 1866, aged 7 years, 6 months, 14 days, and buried next to Samuel Brown.5
Susan (Peebler) Brown was baptized into the Brethren Church in 1859, but the record does not mention Daniel Brown.6
On 3 Feb. 1868, David Springer, age 35, and Susan F. Peebler Brown, age 29, were married at Leggett House in Fairfield, Iowa, by Rev. Maynard.6,7
The obituary says Daniel W. Brown, son of Samuel and Fannie Brown, of Jefferson County, Iowa, died 10 July 1863 [sic], age 21y, 9 m., 19d., leaving a wife and one child to mourn their loss.8
An account for the estate of Daniel W. Brown, decd, was filed by Joseph Sketoe in Sept., 1860, in Jefferson County, IA.