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Brooks, Peter Chardon, 1767-1849



  • Existence: 1767 - 1849


Peter Chardon Brooks (January 6, 1767 – January 1, 1849) was a wealthy Massachusetts merchant.

Early life

Brooks born in North Yarmouth, Maine, on January 6, 1767. His parents were the Rev. Edward Brooks and Abigail Brown. In 1769, the family moved to Medford, Massachusetts, his father's native town, where Brooks boyhood was spent working on the family farm.

After his father's death, in 1781, he was apprenticed to a trade in Boston, walking to the city, a distance of seven miles, every day. Career

In 1789, he engaged in the business of marine insurance, and accumulated a large fortune. He kept with his own hand very accurate accounts, a rare thing in those days, and made it a rule never to borrow money, never to engage in speculation of any kind, and never to take more than the legal rate of interest. He retired from business in 1803, and, until 1806, devoted himself to the settlement of all the risks in which he was interested.

He then accepted the presidency of the New England Insurance Company, the first chartered company of the kind in the state, and filled the office for several years. In his retirement at Medford he took special pleasure in the cultivation of trees, planting many thousands of them about his farm. He was at different times a member of both branches of the legislature, of the first Boston City Council, and of the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention of 1820–1821.

While in the legislature, he took a prominent part in suppressing lotteries, which at that time were flourishing in the state. Mr. Brooks gave liberally, and without parade, to many benevolent objects, and, besides this, his private donations for many years exceeded his domestic expenses.

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Daniel Webster letter

Identifier: Mss 832677
Webster Mss 832677
Date(s): 1832-12-27

In English.

Daniel Webster letter

Identifier: Mss 823659
Webster Mss 823659
Date(s): 1823-12-09

In English.

Peter Chardon Brooks letter

Identifier: Mss 800320.2
Mss 800320.2
Date(s): 1800-05-20
Scope and Contents

By this policy of assurance, underwritten... by Peter Chardon Brooks, Capt. Thomas Brown of Newburyport... causeth himself to be insured the sum of three thousand dollars. In witness whereof, we the assurers at Boston...Signed by Nathaniel Fellows, Wm. H. Bordman, Samuel Pomeroy, Stephen Gorham.

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