Following your Family Footsteps with Google Earth

Today, I am going to create a complete visual for the Browne family on my Father’s Mother’s side. My Great Grandmother, Florence Marion Browne was born on July 19, 1898 in Windham, NY to Robert Emmett Browne and Rosie Anna Knapp. In 1900 when Florence was one year old, the family lived in the town of Windham, NY. Robert was an upholsterer at the time.


Florence Marion Browne

Windham, Broome, NY

Sometime between 1900 – 1905, the family moved to Binghamton, NY where Robert was employed as a clerk. At the age of 6 Florence had two younger siblings Lucy E. (age 4), and William R (age 2).


Robert Emmett Browne and Rosie Anne Knapp

From Windham NY to Binghamton NY in 1905

I have added pins to the map and recorded the resource and date to show the approximate distance of where the Browne Family resided.

In 1910 the family remained in Binghamton, NY where Robert is listed as an upholsterer at a retail furniture store. The family lived at 243 Conklin Avenue which was close to the Susquehanna River.

243 Conklin Avenue Binghamton, Broome, NY

Here I need to make a decision, I could decide to follow Florence M Browne’s life or I could go backward and follow her father Robert Emmett Browne’s footsteps. My ultimate goal is which is to trace Florence’s ancestors so I will focus on Robert. This takes us back to 1880 in Fenton, Broome, New York when Robert was 11 years old living with his father Patrick E. Browne and his mother Nancy. Along with his two brothers William and John. Patrick is listed as being a farmer from Ireland. I’ve decided to mark this location with a different colored pin to show that we are now following Robert’s path (red markers).

Port Crane, Broome, NY 1880

We also find Robert when he is one year old living in Fenton on the 1870 Census with additional siblings: Mary (age 20), Washington (age 17), Julia (age 15), Edmund (age 14), Willie (age 12), Lucy (age 11), and John (age 8).

One of the nice things about plotting your family history out on a map such as this is that you can see things from different perspectives and you can zoom in to the finest detail. Of course we must keep in mind that we are looking at a map that was taken in 2016 and it quite possibly looked different back in 1870.

Jumping around in time now, Robert and Rosie are found in 1910 living at 3 Sheldon St Binghamton, NY and then a year later in 1911 living at 20 Stone Binghamton, NY per the U.S. City Directory. The problem with this record is that it doesn’t indicate whether it is Stone Street, Stone Road, or Stone Ave. so I can’t quite pinpoint that on my map until I find out more information.

Robert Emmett Browne died on May 17 1924 (New York State Death Index Record #26683) at the age of 54 and was buried at Saint Patricks Cemetery in Johnston City, Broome, New York.

St. Patrick’s Cemetery Binghamton, Broome, NY

Now I am going to move back a generation and take a look at Robert’s father, Patrick Evans Browne (yellow markers). I am particularly interested in Patrick Evans because he served in the American Civil War. Patrick was born in Ireland in December of 1825 to Edmond and Mary Browne. The first record I have of Patrick is the 1850 United States Census. He is found living with Nancy in the town of Chenango, Broome, NY. He was listed as a farmer, age 26 and residing with Robert Spendley, a 30-year-old farmer from Pennsylvania. The town of Chenango is currently known as “Chenango Bridge.” According to the New York State Census for 1855, Patrick was still residing in Chenango.

In 1860, we find Patrick and his family living in the town of Port Crane, Broome, NY. It would appear that at this time he had aquired his own farm land. In 1862, Patrick enlisted to serve in the Civil War at the age of 37. He was later discharged on Jun 17, 1865.

New York, Civil War Muster Roll Abstracts, 1861-1900 for Patrick E Brown

This record provides us with detail about Patrick’s military service:

“Brown, Patrick E. Enlisted Age 37 September 5, 1862 Port Crain Mustered in October 27, 1862 as Private in Company G Reg’t 161. He left the organization on June 17, 1865 as Private. Explanation: At Barancas Fla – in accordance with – Genl. Order war Dept. No. 77 Final statement given June 14, 1865. Remarks: Present M.R. April 30 – June 30’ – August 31-1863 December 3 1863 Feb 29 1864, Absent. Sick leave of sixty days from September 7 to go to Binghamton NY. M.R. October 31 1863. Present M.R. April 30 -64-June 30 -1864. August 31 October 31 ’64. December 31-64. February 28 1865.” “ 30-1865.

Wounded in hip and right foot at Coxe’s Plantation LA, Personal accord- place of residence and P.U. Address, Port Crane, Broome Co. N.Y. Married. Names of parents, Edmond + Mary, born Ireland Dec 1825. Occupation Farmer.”

Coxe’s Plantation LA is also known as the “Battle of Kock’s Plantation” which occured on “July 12-13, 1863 in Ascension Parish, Louisiana. It was part of the campaign entitled “Taylor’s Operations in West Louisiana. The Confederate States Army victory left them in control of much of the interior of the Acadiana region. Following the surrender of Port Hudson, two Union divisions were shifted to Donaldsonville by transports, to move inland and pacify the interior. They marched up Bayou Lafourche, a division on each bank. Confederate Brig. Gen. Tom Green posted a brigade on the east side of the bayou and placed his second brigade on the other side.

As the Union forces advanced, skirmishing occured on July 11 and 12. On the morning of the 13th, a foraging detachment set out along both banks of the bayou. Upon reaching Kock’s Plantation (Saint Emma Plantation), they met Rebel skirmishers that forced them back. Then, Green’s Confederates flung their might against the Union troops, which kept retiring although they tried to make stands at various points. The Union troops eventually fell back to the protection of the guns at Fort Butler at Donaldsonville, about six miles from Kock’s Plantation. A much smaller Rebel force had routed the Yankees. The expedition failed, leaving the Confederates in control of the interior. Estimated casualties: 463 total (US 430; CS 33)

The restored plantation house, built in 1847 by a leading sugar planter, is maintained as a private museum filled with period furnishings. It is located on Highway 1 South near Donaldsonville (Retrieved from Wikipedia)”.

St. Emma Plantation

St. Emma Plantation. Johnston, Frances Benjamin (Photographer) Courtesy of Louisiana State Museum

Distance between New York and Coxes Plantation, LA

Quite the distance Patrick had to travel from Port Crane, NY to Donaldsonville, LA

Battle of Coxes Plantation

Despite being wounded at the Battle of Coxes Plantation, Patrick continued his service up until June 17, 1865 where he was discharged in Barancas, FL.

Distance between Coxe’s Plantation and Fort Barrancas, Florida

As mentioned earlier, Patrick Evans Browne then returned to Port Crane, Broome, NY. In June 1870 is when his youngest son (my Great Great Grandfather) Robert was born.

Patrick lived a long life and is found on the NYS Census for 1892 in Fenton, Broome, NY with Nancy at the age of 66. Patrick died on Jan 13, 1910 at the age of 84 in Binghamton, NY (New York Death Index Cert #2029).

Next blog will focus on the next generation in the Browne family, Patrick’s father Edmond William Browne.

#AscensionParish #Binghamton #Broome #Windham #Browne #Brown #GoogleEarth #CivilWar #PortCrane #Private #Louisiana #FlorenceMarionBrowne

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