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[p. 13] Brooks of Medford, A. B. (Harvard, 1755), A. M. (ib., 1760), who was born 4 November 1743 and died at Medford 6 May 1781. For a few years after his graduation at Harvard Edward Brooks was librarian of Harvard College, and in July 1764 he was settled as pastor at North Yarmouth, Me. Here, however, Mr. Brooks's somewhat liberal theology proved unacceptable to his flock, and in March 1769 he was at his own request dismissed from his pastorate and returned to Medford. He took an active part in the stirring events of 19 April 1775, and in 1777 was appointed chaplain on the frigate Hancock, which was captured by the British off Halifax, Mr. Brooks being held for some time as a prisoner. By his wife, Abigail Brown, whom he married in September 1764, daughter of Rev. John and Joanna (Cotton) Brown of Haverhill and great-great-granddaughter of the famous Puritan teacher, Rev. John Cotton of Boston, Mr. Brooks had two sons and two daughters. His second son, Hon. Peter Chardon Brooks, who was born at North Yarmouth 6 January 1767 and died in Boston 1 January 1849, was named for one of his father's Harvard classmates, Peter Chardon, who died prematurely in the West Indies in October 1766, the son of an eminent Boston merchant of Huguenot descent, whose house stood at the corner of the present Bowdoin Square and Chardon Street, on the site recently occupied by the Bowdoin Square Baptist Church. The family of Rev. Edward Brooks was in straightened circumstances after his death; but the young Peter Chardon Brooks, starting in business in Boston about 1789 as a marine-insurance broker, rose to be one of the most eminent merchants of Boston, and accumulated a fortune. He resided in Boston in the winter, and passed his summers on his ancestral acres in the western part of Medford, where he built a large mansion house. At various times he held public office in the Commonwealth, serving in both branches of the State Legislature, in the Executive Council, and in the Constitutional Convention of 1820.

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