Sunday, July 13, 2014

               Happy Birthday to Albert G Britton (1852-1884)!

Albert G Britton
(Source: courtesy of bbritton11, 

Today is the birthday of my second great grandfather, Albert G Britton, born on July 13, 1852 in Aberdeen, Brown County, Ohio, to Martin Watson Britton and Lucretia Ann Frame.  He was child number 4 of 12 children, and Martin and Lucretia's first born son.  His siblings were...

Harriet S Britton 1846-1922
Addeline Dimmett Britton 1847-1925
Arabelle E Britton 1850-1934
Reginald "Rega" Emmett Britton 1854-1844
Emmett Martin "Mett" Britton 1857-1950
Hiram Pierce Britton 1859-1948
Martina Ann "Anna" Britton 1862-1952
Victor Eugene Britton 1864-1945
Mayme/Mary W Britton 1867-1959
Charles Carroll Britton 1870-1950
Alvin Clifton Britton 1873-1948

Albert married Elizabeth "Eliza" Sharp, daughter of Tilford and Miriam (Duncan) Sharp on April 3rd, 1872 at the home of Tilford Sharp in Pendleton County, Kentucky.

Martin Britton, Albert's father, was a farmer and sometime between 1860 and 1863 moved his family from Ohio to Pendleton County, Kentucky.  Albert followed in his father's footsteps and became a farmer also.  He and Eliza had 4 children together before Eliza's early death around the year 1880, making her about 25 years old.  Eliza is still a mystery to me.  I have been unable to find her death information or burial place.  Could it be that she died giving birth to her youngest child Lucia?

Albert and Eliza's children...

Albert Eugene "Bert" Britton 1873-1956
Morris Britton 1875-1943
Archie W Britton 1877-1955
Lucia Britton 1880-1880

Left with 3 small children, I can only imagine that Albert was overwhelmed.  He was suddenly thrust into the life of a single father.  He had to make a living farming and care for his children by himself.  Maybe here we have a clue as to why Albert G took his oldest son, Albert Eugene, out of school to work sometime around his 3rd grade year. Eliza's sister, Lucy must have been helping out with the children, because it wasn't long after Eliza's death that on Oct 21st, 1881, Albert and Lucy Sharp were married.

 Albert G and Lucy (Sharp) Britton
Source:  Kenneth Britton

Albert had two more children with Lucy...

Emery Emmett Britton 1882-1936
James Britton 1884-1963

On March 21st, 1884, Albert G Britton died from an injury he sustained a few days before his death.  He was kicked in the head while helping his father break a young horse.  It seems his death wasn't caused by the head injury, but from an overdose of Calomel, aka Mercury.  Mercury was a popular remedy in the 1700's and 1800's.  It was thought to relieve the body of impurities and used for multiple types of ailments.  We now know that Calomel is toxic.  Albert was 31 years old when he died leaving behind 4 young boy's and a pregnant wife. The oldest boy was my great grandfather, Albert Eugene Britton. He had just turned 11 years old in February, one month before his father's death in March. Albert's youngest son, James, was born 2 and a half month's after the death of his father.

Below is a letter sent to me by Kenneth Britton, dated April 2, 1884, from Martin Watson Britton informing his son Reginald of his brother Albert's death...

After reading this letter, you get a good idea of what a different day in age it was. I've tried to form a mental image of a father by his son's side for days watching him die in such a painful manner.  It seems incomprehensible.

It's also hard to imagine what Lucy was going through during this time. She was left with her sister's children as well as her own with a child almost due to be born. Three of these children had lost both their mother and their father and were now orphans. 

These circumstances surely were the catalyst that lead to my great grandfather, Albert Eugene Britton, to run away from home with his brother Morris at a very young age (as told to me by my Aunt Janice Britton Peters). But that's different story for another time! 

I'd like to thank Kenneth Britton for all of his hard work, research and generosity. He has paved a path for the descendents of Joseph M. Britton and made our sluething much easier!

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