A Guide to the Jacob De Witt Brewster Papers, 1855-1865, 1892-1896
Jacob De Witt Brewster(1836-1896) was born to Cyrus and Ann (Tappan) Brewster in Montreal, Canada, where his father worked in the family's hardware business. In May 1861, Brewster was commissioned into the 2nd Iowa Infantry as a U. S. Army captain. That October, he was discharged in St. Louis, Missouri, only to be reappointed three days later. During the Civil War, Brewster served as an aide-de-camp to General Francis J. Herron as well as chief of artillery for the Army of the Tennessee at Vicksburg and ordinance officer in the 3rd division in the Army of the Frontier. Discharged May 1865, he returned to Davenport, Iowa, where he had married Louisa Keefer three years before, and to the family hardware business. In 1869, Brewster and his family, eventually including five children, moved to Derby, Connecticut, where he would spend the rest of his life.
Correspondence and military papers compose the Jacob De Witt Papers, 1855-1865, 1892-1896, documenting Brewster's life and career as hardware merchant and a Union Army captain during the Civil War. Military papers primarily consist of Brewster's correspondence as an aide-de-camp of General Francis J. Herron and discuss combat and troop conditions. The collection also includes an annotated transcript of the military correspondence by James W. Pohl and official military documents describing soldiers and ammunition captured by Brewster's division in 1863. Additional correspondence with Brewster's family relates to the Civil War, family activities, and the hardware business.
This collection is open for research use.
Jacob De Witt Brewster Papers, 1855-1865, 1892-1896, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers