NameDennis Brawley
BirthOct 18, 1807
DeathOct 22, 1885
BaptismDec 25, 1807, St. Michael's Church, Loretto, Pa., by Rev. Demetrius A. Gallitzin
FatherDennis Brawley (1767-1856)
MotherCatherine (-1862)
BirthAug 19, 1832, Kappel am Rhein, Baden, Germany
DeathApr 15, 1905, Barr Township, Cambria County, Pa.
BurialSt. Nicholas Church Cemetery, Nicktown, Pa.
FatherJohann Georg Fehrenbacher (1768-1851)
MotherFranziska Gänshirth (1788-1845)
ChildrenMathilda (1856-1943)
Notes for Dennis Brawley
As a child, Dennis carried water to the workmen that laid the Northern Pike through Ebensburg, Pa., the predecessor to modern Route 22. In his youth he was a waggoner who transported goods from Baltimore and Pittsburgh to Philadelphia. He became a boatman when the Pennsylvania Canal opened. During the Civil War, he ran boats along the Cumberland Canal. In later life, he assisted with the management of the Blair House hotel, in Ebensburg, Pa.

Census records show that in 1850 Dennis was was a “Boatman” living in Washington Township, Cambria County, with the family of his older brother Michael. His parents were living at the boarding home of Mary Evans in Ebensburg. This boarding house was acquired by John and Mary Jane Blair, and re-established as Blair House, in 1853. Victoria Fehrenbacher / Farabaugh came to work there following her arrival from Baden, Germany, and had a daughter by Dennis Brawley in 1856. The couple did not marry, and Victoria later married Frederick Bechel. Together they raised the daughter and had a family near Nicktown, Pa.

Dennis cannot be found in the 1860 Census, but in 1870, he is living at the Blair House in Ebensburg, where John Blair was working as Sheriff and Dennis is listed in some capacity as “Speculator in [House?}, possibly in connection with the county prison there. In 1880, Dennis Brawley is listed as a 73 year old boarder and "servant" at the Blair House on High Street.

1885 Will Book, Cambria County, Pa. 1-283 Dennis Brawley.
Notes for Viktoria (Spouse 1)
Victoria’s obituary explains that she was born in Baden, Germany, and that she came to the U.S. in 1853 with her two nephews Charles and Bernard Farabaugh. She was well-known in Ebensburg, having lived with the family of John A. Blair for a number of years. She married Frederick Bechel in May of 1859 and that “[t]o their union” was born Mathilda, wife of Anthony Brewer of Pittsburg[h], Mary, wife of J.L. Sherry and Henry, with whom she made her home. She was “a life long member of the Catholic Church, a good kind mother and a model neighbor.” Victoria had been ailing from lung trouble for 20 years, which developed into dropsy and caused her death.

John A. Blair opened his boarding house and hotel in November of 1853, following his acquistion of the Ebensburg boarding house formerly kept by Mary O. Evans. Victoria lived and worked there with the assistance of Carrolltown’s founder, Fr. Peter Lemke. Dennis Brawley, whose parents were residents of the home, fathered a daughter to Victoria. Victoria raised the daughter, Matilda, and later married Frederick Bechel, settling near Nicktown, Pa.

In 1860, "Victoria" was a 27 year old born in Baden, living in Carroll Township with her husband, "Frederick Bagheal," a 49 year old "farm labourer" born in Saxony, with realty valued at $1000 and personal effects worth $250.

Victoria evidently became a U.S. Citizen on October 7, 1862, the same date as her husband Frederick.

In 1880, "Victoria" was a 49 year old "house keeper," born in Baden, and living with her husband in Barr Township. "Frederick Pichel" was born in Saxony, was 70 years old, and was "not working." The surname apparently evolved from Pichel or Bichel to Bechel, the name assumed by the descendants.
Last Modified Aug 27, 2014Created Sep 1, 2022 using Reunion for Macintosh