Photo History of the Black 95th Engineer General Service Regiment in World War II in Two Volumes Published

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Update in January, 2018: I am now working on a first volume of my father’s World War II letters, “Letters From the Alcan Highway by Captain Stuart V. Bradley” that I hope to complete by June.

Update in December: An excellent history of the Black 93rd Engineer Regiment, which built the part of the Alcan Highway in the Yukon Territory, has been written by Christine & Dennis McClure called “We Fought the Road” just published in October. I am enjoying the book very much. It can be found HERE at their website.

Railway Station Press is publishing the Photo History of the Black 95th Engineer General Service Regiment in World War II.  You can go to HERE to see the Kickstarter Campaign. The photo above is the Army Post Office 998 based in Dawson Creek, British Columbia.

The 95th Engineer General Service Regiment was formed at Fort Belvoir, Virginia in April of 1941. It consisted of African American troops mostly from the southern United States and white officers. In 1942 they were sent to Fort Bragg, North Carolina to train for deployment in North Africa. Instead, they were one of three black engineer regiments (along with four white regiments) sent to British Columbia, the Yukon and Alaska to build the pioneer road from Fort Dawson, British Columbia to Fairbanks, Alaska called the Alcan (Alaska) Highway. The 95th was assigned the section from Fort St. John north to Fort Nelson, British Columbia. The Peace River was a major obstacle to cross. My father who was from Minnesota, Lt. Stuart Bradley (later Captain), was a supply officer. It turned out to be one of the coldest winters on record.

The next assignment for the 95th began in July of 1943 and was in England and Wales to build training and invasion camps in preparation for D-Day. Two weeks after D-Day in 1944 the 95th crossed the English Channel into Normandy, France. Their task then turned to repairing damaged train tracks and bridges, often destroyed by the Germans as they retreated. After some time in Liege, Belgium they were on the border with Germany during the Battle of the Bulge in the late winter of 1944 and found themselves close to the front line. Once in Germany they traveled as far east as Gera, which later became part of East Germany, before being pulled back to France.

They were kept at Camp Lucky Strike for 45 days waiting for a ship back to the United States when most units only spent a week at most, in the camp. There were two reasons for this; combat units were needed for a possible transfer to the Pacific, and they were waiting for a ship just the right size for the 95th as white soldiers did not want to share a ship with black troops. They finally shipped out on August 5th, 1945 and arrived back in United States on August 12th.

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The 19th Century Women of Wellington, Ohio Book is Now Available

Update on November 25th, 2017: The Book is available for sale here.

Nicole M. Hayes has written an excellent book that Railway Station Press is going to publish as it’s second book after The 1907 Autobiography of Henry Martin Bradley.

Nicole has been writing a blog on the 19th Century History of Wellington, Ohio for the last four years.  She has had blog posts about Henry Martin Bradley who grew up in Wellington and the Howk family, a family of Dutch ancestry who the Bradleys married into.  Nicole has a Master’s Degree in American History from William & Mary and has worked at Harvard University, Colonial Williamsburg and Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

We expect to publish and ship this book in December, 2017.  You can order the book for $18 with free Media Mail shipping by sending a check to “Railway Station Press” at P. O. Box 2327, Alexandria, VA 22301.

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Wellington Final Cover copy

This is the front cover of Nicole Hayes’s book.

Wellington, Ohio Plat Map from 1857

Bradley 100 Acres in SE corner Seciton 1 1857

As Henry described it in his 1907 Autobiography, his father William Bradley owned one hundred acres, in the southeast corner of Wellington Township in Lorain County, Ohio where they relocated from Massachusetts in 1835.  He wrote that they lived four miles from the village of Wellington which can be seen on the map below.

There are a total of three parcels in Wellington Township owned by Bradleys and a large number of parcels owned by Howks, the Dutch family that many Bradleys married into.  In fact, the William Bradley farm had Howks on either side of it in Section One.

SE Part of Wellington Township 1857

This 1857 map is in the Library of Congress collection and is available online.

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The Dutch Connection: Howk, Van Orden & Gansevoort Families

There is a history of the English Bradley family members marrying into Dutch families.  A previous blog post describes the connection in Lee, Massachusetts and Wellington, Ohio to the Howk family. My maternal grandmother was a Van Orden and she traced her family back to the owners of the Van Orden farm which is now occupied by a hotel in Manhattan.

Henry Martin Bradley’s second son, Charles Henry Bradley, married Magdalena Gansevoort Ten Eyck (1855 to 1913) of the prominent Albany, New York Ten Eyck family (they owned the Ten Eyck Hotel in Albany). Her ancestry can also be traced back to the Gansevoort family who moved to Albany in 1660. She was named after Magdalena Gansevoort (1777 to 1863) who married Jacob A. Ten Eyck in 1795. My 3rd cousin, Kevin Leslie, owns an oil painting of Jacob Ten Eyck. Ten Eyck is actually German and the Gansevoort family is Dutch.

Magdalina Ten Eyck

Magdalena Gansevoort Ten Eyck (1855 to 1913)

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Update on Publication of Henry Martin Bradley Autobiography

The 1907 Autobiography is now an InDesign file with a layout of 50 pages containing 24 drawings by Maeve Bradley.  It is currently being proofread by our editor Nancy Brooks.  It will be a 5.5 by 8.5 inch book with an additional 41 pages of scanned genealogical material.  I will experiment to see how some pages of photographs print when we order proof copies.  So the final book will be about 92 to 100 pages, a perfect bound paperback, with a color cover and an ISBN number.  It should be available in June.

Below is the current draft of the first page of the Autobiography:

Update on June 20th, 2017: copies of the 114 page book are available.

 

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Dan Beach Bradley: Missionary & Doctor to the Royal Court of the Kingdom of Siam

If you trace back seven generations to Captain Jesse Bradley who fought in the Revolutionary War, and then trace forward from his older brother Jabez by two generations you come to Dan Beach Bradley who lived from 1804 to 1873.  He went to the Kingdom of Siam as a missionary physician with his wife in 1835 and stayed there until his death in Bangkok (now Thailand).

Through treating the prince during a serious illness, he gained the trust and friendship of the future King Mongkut of Siam.  This was the King who desired to westernize the Kingdom and was portrayed in the musical “The King and I”.  Dan Beach Bradley also was a friend of Anna Leonowens, the English governess whose memoirs were the basis of that story.

Besides bringing Western medical practices to Siam and serving the royal court, Dan Beach Bradley brought the first Thai script printing press to Siam.  He founded the first newspaper, “The Bangkok Recorder” and printed 10,000 copies of the Opium Edict of 1839 for King Mongkut banning the use of opium in the Kingdom.  He was the first of a direct line of five generations of Bradley missionaries.

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Rev. Dr. Dan Beach Bradley

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Danyell Broadley de West Morton, a Common Ancestor for Many American Bradleys

Danyell Broadley de West Morton lived in Bingley, Yorkshire, England from 1588 to 1641 and was the father of our ancestor, William Bradley, who emigrated to New Haven, Connecticut in 1637.  He was married three times and fathered children with each of his wives.  His first wife, Elsabeth Atkinson, had eight children: Agnes, William, Daniell, Mathew, Michaell, Samuell, Abraham and Marie.  William’s brother Daniell also emigrated to New England where he was a yeoman farmer and miller and had the misfortune of being killed by an Indian raiding party in 1689 when caught alone on the road outside Haverhill, Massachusetts.

Danyell’s second wife was Annis Holdroide and their only child Esther died in infancy.

His third wife was Elizabeth Sheaffe and they had five children, Ellin, Joshua, Daniell, Nathan and Steuen.  After the father’s death, William as the oldest son, made provision for the emigration of his stepmother and his half siblings to come and settle in Connecticut.  Many American Bradleys are descendants of these half siblings.

Joseph Philo Bradley who was appointed to the US Supreme Court by President Grant, and served from 1870 to 1892, was interested in genealogy and traced his ancestors to Francis Bradley of Fairfield, Connecticut who emigrated in 1637 and concluded that Francis was probably the first cousin of William Bradley.

William’s stepmother Elizabeth lived until 1683 and outlived all three of her husbands, her two American husbands were both from Guilford.

This genealogy of the descendants of Danyell Broadley de West Morton was prepared by Saul M. Montes-Bradley and is available at this link.

Joseph P. Bradley

Supreme Court Justice Joseph P. Bradley

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Jesse Alva Bradley, His Children & Grandchildren 1952 Family Portrait

duncan-bradley-clan-1952

Duncan Scott Bradley sent me this photograph taken in 1952 in Duluth.  He is the ten year old in the center of the top row with his mother and father to the right side of him.

He is the son of Jesse Duncan Bradley and Mary Alice Manley Bradley, the grandson of Jesse Alva Bradley and Mabel Duncan Bradley pictured in the center of the photograph.  He is the great grandson of Alva William Bradley and Orleana Tenney Bradley who are both in the Family Portrait of 1891.  Alva was Henry Martin Bradley’s oldest son.

jesse-edward

In this detail from the Family Portrait of 1891 my grandfather, Edward Cook Bradley, on the left appears to be arm and arm with his first cousin Jesse Alva Bradley.  Jesse’s brother Frank is on the right.  I like to think that Ed and Jesse were pals as first cousins can be, and as I have been with my first cousin David Bruce Bradley.

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New Family Stories from Cousins

In doing the Henry Martin Bradley Autobiography reprint and Kickstarter project I have been hearing from some cousins of mine.  Cece Menard Lane and her brother John Menard, 2nd cousins and grandchildren of Lucile Bradley Shepard, wrote me on Thanksgiving saying that they wanted to contribute to the reprint project with checks.  Cece then wrote me a letter saying that she is old enough to remember our great grandfather Edward Luther Bradley and his house at 2229 East 1st street in Duluth.  She said he played the card games “Slap Jack” and “War” for her.

My first cousins tell me that their father, Bruce Burris Bradley, proposed marriage to their mother, Ruth Atkins, in that same house.  I have also heard from 3rd cousin Press Norpell, widow of the former family trustee Tim Norpell.  She has the 1891 family portrait in her house just as I do.  I would love to hear where the other copies of the 13 1/2 by 20 inch, 1891 family portrait ended up.  She also confirmed that she still has one of the two original bound copies of the Autobiography of 1907.

Rumsey Young, also a 3rd cousin, came for a visit and told me the history of the Norpell family.  Carl Norpell who married Adie May Bradley was a lawyer in Ohio and his father emigrated from Germany.  His son Max was also a lawyer and researched and printed the Genealogy update of 1927.  Max’s sister Louise was Rumsey’s grandmother.  Max was the father of Tim who also was a lawyer.

Finally, I have been trying various items with Zazzle such as shirts and mugs using the carte de visite photograph of Henry Martin Bradley that was in the album given to me by my 3rd cousin Ruth Boone.  Her grandmother was Alice Bradley Edwards, the oldest child of Henry.  So I now offer the Henry Martin Bradley 15 ounce coffee mug at $18 postpaid.  All proceeds go to the Autobiography project.

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hmb-mug-15-oz