Charlotte Smith Hoggatt Brandon
Aug 30, 1821 - Dec 21, 1873
Daughter of Nathanial Hoggatt and Charlotte Smith, and mother of at least 13 children (nine of whom did not live to adulthood), I have been able to find less information than I'd hoped for on Charlotte. I would like to know more about the woman who penned the elegiacal words that spoke to me from her childrens' graves on a Mother's Day nearly 150 years after she had them inscribed there.
For now, I can only piece together my assumptions combined with the information I have been able to track down about her.
Obviously, Charlotte was a learned lady, and woman of some prominence. The elaborate headstones of her children attest to her wealth; due in part, I'm sure, to her 1840 marriage to the son of a notable politician and former Governor, Gerard Brandon.
Charlotte may have come from a well-to-do family herself. According to natchezbelle.org, Charlotte's parents, some siblings and other family members are buried in an old cemetery in Fenwick, Mississippi; the area is called "Clover Hill Plantation". I was unable to find much information on a Clover Hill Plantation other than being listed as one that, at one time, kept slaves.
Regardless, on October 29, 1840, Charlotte S. Hoggatt became Charlotte S. Brandon, marrying the eldest son and namesake of Mississippi's fourth and sixth governor, Gerard Chittocque Brandon. Though a record in a book says only that Gerard and Charlotte had a "large family" that they raised at Brandon Hall, the exact number of children is never given in any of the records I've come across.
Charlotte and Brandon built their home, Brandon Hall, on land given to the couple by her father, Nathanial.
Genealogy records I have found only list some of the surviving children (or those that reached adulthood) with a note that reads "eight additional children; names not given".
The children listed were: Charles, James, Ella and Mary.
The "eight additional children" would most likely be those that died and are interred in the cemetery: Margaret, Gerard, Anna, Philip, Alice, and the twins Agnes and Sarah. There is also Charlotte, who did not die young but is buried among her siblings; bringing the total to eight buried at this site. I later learned there was another child, Geraldine, who was born on Sep 10, 1861 and died, aged only 2, on Apr 23, 1864. I have not been able to find out where she was buried.
An 1860 U.S. Census lists the following inhabitants of the Brandon household:
- Gerard Brandon
- Charlotte Brandon
- Elmina Brandon
- James Brandon
- Charlotte Brandon
- Sarah Brandon
- Agnes Brandon
- Alice Brandon
- Louisa Brandon
- John Lyle
- Wm Huley
- Rose Huley
Elmina is Charlotte and Gerard's third child, Elizabeth Elmina, known as "Ella".
In the 1870 U.S. Census, a few new names appear: Charles G. Brandon, aged 5 and born approximately 1865, living in Adams County, Mississippi. He is listed again on an 1880 U.S. Census survey, aged 15; here he is listed as a brother-in-law of the head of household (Aaron Stanton). Later on, a 1930 U.S. Census shows a 65 year-old Charles, married to a Nellie W. Brandon.
There is also Mary S. Brandon, aged fifteen and born approximately 1855, living in Adams County, Mississippi. It also shows a Charlotte in the house in 1870 that is age 5 which I have since discovered is Charlotte and Gerard's granddaughter; she is the child of Ella (Elizabeth Elmina) and Aaron Stanton who, it seems, lived with Ella's family and eventually took over the home.
Louisa Brandon was 35 years-old at the time of the 1860 census, and not one of Gerard and Charlotte's children; I have not yet figured out how she was related. The census listed her birthplace as Ohio.
(John Lyle and Wm Huley were overseers of Brandon Hall, and Rose Huley, the wife of Wm - which would have been "William".)
As I find more information on Charlotte and her children, I will post it here. If you have anything you could add to the story, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Her Surviving Children
- James Chambers Brandon
- Charlotte Hoggatt Brandon Peirce
- Elizabeth "Ella" Elmina Brandon Stanton
- Charles Gerard Brandon
- Mary Smith Brandon Kearny
The Brandon Children
From what I have been able to piece together, this is the complete list of Gerard & Charlotte H. Brandon's children, in order of birth:
A Mother's Love & Loss
On Nov 10, 2008, I was inspired to put together a video using Windows Movie Maker and the original photographic shots I took when first I found the cemetery in May of 2006. Please go here to view the video.