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Nothing has been found regarding Benjamin's parents or place of birth. A family record, published without giving a source for it, says he was born in Talbot Co., MD.1 His birthdate is given on his gravestone, so it is known that when he first appears in tax records in 1782 in Murderkill Hundred, Kent Co., DE, he was a landowner in his early 20s. There is no record of his purchasing land there beforehand. The family name is said to have been either Bradley or Brady, and there was an older Benjamin Bradley who had property in Murderkill Hundred before Benjamin Brady in 1780. They overlap briefly in the tax records, at which time the older Benjamin is listed without owing any tax. He was very likely the same Benjamin Bradley who shows up in neighboring Little Creek Hundred with taxable property about 1782 and has a probate file there, in which he only mentions a son Maurice? While it is tempting to think that Benjamin Bradley and Benjamin Brady were father and son, there is little to support the idea at present. If the elder Benjamin died and property passed to the younger Benjamin only by default, there would be no record of it. It would have been odd for someone to consciously change their name from Bradley to Brady. If it did happen, it may have been due to a schism between father and son, which would also explain why Benjamin Brady isn't mentioned in the Bradley estate. However, Benjamin Brady somehow acquired property at 22, at which time he was already a Brady and unlikely to have made enough money on his own to buy property. In any case, Benjamin rose to prominence in Camden, being a justice of the peace and founder of the local Methodist Church. He and several others provided land for the construction of the Whatcoat Chapel in Camden. Miriam, likely his daughter, has a gravestone in the Methodist Cemetery in Camden. A death notice (given below) infers that he became a Methodist about 1790.
     Benjamin married Miriam Lockwood, the widow of Cornelius Battelle, and she brought her own young children to the Brady household. Benjamin apparently was living with his son Samuel in Baltimore County, Maryland, when he died, and would have moved after 1835, when he appears in Kent County records. He is buried in Taylor's (Methodist) Chapel cemetery just north of Baltimore with Samuel's family. The chapel and cemetery were on the property of a Quaker family that converted to Methodism in the 1770s. They were ancestors of Samuel Brady's wife. If there was a chapel there that Benjamin may have visited, it was replaced by a new building about 14 years after he died. A death notice in the 21 December issue of The Baltimore Sun confuses his and his son's names:

On the 18th inst. at the home of his son, Samuel Brady, late of the State of Delaware, in the 80th year of his age. The deceased was for fifty years a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

The Brady plot at Taylor's Chapel, Benjamin's stone to the far right, and to to the left is his grandson Jefferson, who died in the Civil War, Samuel Brady's wife Ann and Samuel's tall, round-topped stone.

children of Benjamin Brady and Elizabeth Broadaway:

i. James b. 8 February 1789
ii. John b. abt 1791
iii. Miriam? b. abt 1793, d. 25 February 1859 (bur. Camden)
iv. Philip b. abt 1796
v. Mary b. 25 February 1798
vi. Samuel b. 5 October 1801
vii. Benjamin b. abt 1803
viii. Margaret b. abt 1805

vital records sources:


all text and photographs © 1998-2021 by Doug Sinclair unless where otherwise noted