Monthly Archives: September 2015

A Beekman family cookbook

Recipes for Indian pudding, suet pudding, and carrot pudding from the Beekman cookbook.

A surprising find in my box of Steward family papers is a combination cookbook–book of home remedies. It is a surprise not as a document – the R. Stanton Avery Special Collections at NEHGS holds many such hybrids – but as a lone example of something from my paternal grandmother’s family in a collection of Steward, White, and Beeckman papers.

To be specific, the cookbook section’s front end paper reads The Misses Beekman. My grandmother was named for her maternal great-great-grandmother, Anne Beekman (1784–1842), who married John Finlay of Montreal in 1809, and the Misses Beekman were Mrs. Finlay’s unmarried sisters, Aletta Beekman (1787–1851) and Cornelia Beekman (1790–1826).[1] Continue reading A Beekman family cookbook

How to keep a surname going?

The poet James Russell Lowell

Reading Scott Steward’s post about surnames being changed to keep another family name going reminded me of two examples we encountered when we wrote The Descendants of Judge John Lowell of Newburyport, Massachusetts together.

The first example is relatively straightforward. This involved the descendants of the poet James Russell Lowell (1819–1891). James had three daughters and one son, but only his daughter Mabel survived childhood. She married Edward Burnett and had three sons – James Russell Lowell Burnett (b. 1873), Joseph Burnett (b. 1874), and Francis Lowell Burnett (b. 1878). In 1890, Mabel’s eldest son James had his name changed to James Burnett Lowell to continue his maternal grandfather’s surname. Continue reading How to keep a surname going?