William Brazenor (1824-1894) and Harriet R Keene (1825-1901)

William, baptised in 1824, was the son of Thomas and Mary Brazener of Astley, Worcestershire. His Brazener line may be traced back to the village of Worthen, Shropshire. Four of his children and at least two grandchildren were destined to migrate to the USA. In the censuses of 1841 and 1851, William was working as a carpenter and living with his parents at Astley, where in 1851 he married Harriet Rebecca Keene. Harriet, a 26 year old dressmaker, the daughter of John and Alice Keene of Astley, was born at Potter’s Ring, Northamptonshire.  They had their first child Alice Mary in 1852, at Astley. Another daughter Harriet was born in 1853 and son John Keene, in 1855 and they were baptised together in 1856, at Aston, Warwickshire. However, John died in that same year. The following year another son Constantine Robert was born followed by Rosa Harriet in 1859, both at Aston.

In 1861, William, Harriet and family were living with Harriet’s father John Keene, in Birmingham, where John was described as a provisions dealer. William and Harriet’s last child William Keene Brazener was born in Birmingham in 1870. The following year, in the census,  Robert, Rosa and William were living with their parents and their surname was recorded as Brasenor. Their daughter Harriet, however, was now Harriet Brazner, a 17 year old, live- in nursemaid with an Eagles family at Edgbaston, Birmingham. In 1879, Alice Mary Brasner, married James Clap Withington at Boston, Massachusetts, USA. How and when she got there is still to be discovered but Alice led the way for her siblings.

In 1881, Constantine Robert, Rosa and William were again with their parents at Aston. Robert was employed as a rivet maker, Rosa as a warehouse girl and William was still at school. Constantine Robert married Annie Duffield at Aston, in 1883. His sister Rose/Rosa married in 1885, at Birmingham, to Leonard Columbus Perks. In that same year their sister Harriet Brazner arrived at Boston, on the Samaria, presumably to join her sister Alice.

In the 1891 Census, William, Harriet and William Jnr were in Birmingham, and Rose Perks with her husband Leonard and their two children were living with them. On 26 January 1893, a W. Brazner, mechanic, left Liverpool, England;  on 9 February 1893, a William K Brazner, blacksmith, arrived Boston, on the Catalonia, from Liverpool.

William Brazener died at Birmingham in 1894, aged 70, followed by his wife Harriet Rebecca Brazener, in 1901, aged 75. The Brazener/Brazner name was continued by their sons  Constantine Robert and William Keene, both of whom migrated to the USA. William K arrived in Boston in 1893. According to data from the 1900 Census he married Ida Mulder there in 1897 and they had a son, also named William Keene, in 1898. Their daughter Hazel H followed in 1901 and son Howard W in 1905, both at Boston, where they were still living in 1910. By 1920, the family had moved to Weymouth Town, Massachusetts, where William K senior was employed as an electrician working at a shipyard. Sometime between 1920 and 1930  the family moved to Los Angeles, California. Ida is no longer on the scene and had possibly died.  William junior had married Clara Henrietta Gross in about 1925, and they had a daughter Claire Norma, in 1926. Howard W was also in Los Angeles. In 1937, William K snr, was living at 427 North Ave, 50.Los Angeles. We know this from the immigration documents of Leonard William Perks, Wm K’s nephew, who arrived at Boston from England on 25 July 1937, intending to stay some five weeks in the USA. In the census of 1940, William K senior, still in Los Angeles, was a 70 year old widower and living with him was his daughter  Hazel H Orr and son in law Harvey E Orr, who was a printer. William passed away in Los Angeles in 1961.

William K’s brother, Constantine Robert, who retained the name Brazener, married Annie Duffield at Aston, in 1883. They had a daughter Annie Rebecca, who’s birth was registered at Kings Norton, Birmingham, in 1887, however, in the 1891 Census her place of birth is recorded as Smethwick, Staffordshire. In 1901, Robert and family were still in Birmingham, where Robert was a bolt maker. Early in March 1911, R and A Brazener and a nameless female Brazener, left Liverpool, England for Boston. On the 15th March 1911, the ship Winifreidian from Liverpool, arrived at Boston and Robert, Annie and Annie Rebecca are recorded on the  arrivals list. It is likely that they were attracted to Boston by Robert’s brother William K, who was living there in 1910.

Robert and Annie are next found in the 1920 Census, when they are in Los Angeles, California, and have a janitorial business. In 1924, Robert and Annie can be found on the Incoming Passenger List, arriving at Liverpool, England, on the ship New Toronto, from Buenos Aires, presumably home to visit relatives.  Sister Annie Brazener (nee Duffield) died in Los Angeles, California on 12 July 1933. She was a member of the Christadelphian Church, and her death is recorded in a church newsletter of February 1934. It mentions that she had a surviving daughter Sister Annie Banks, also a member of the church. Annie Rebecca can be assumed therefore to have married a Mr Banks. Indeed, a John Robert Banks was born to a mother of maiden name Brazenor, in 1922 (from USSSDI details in 1989). As yet, the death event for Robert Constantine has not been found.

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